I am angry. I am enraged at the world and all the problems within it. I am offended by the lack of justice and I am confused. I am not confused on my position in all the madness that I hear, feel, see and experience but I am confused at how to be the Wiccan High Priestess that I am and to feel the intense emotion that I feel without a balance or way of understanding it.
How to balance the spiritual part of who I am with the feelings produced by living in the world I live in is a complex mix up of emotions, frustration and complete chaotic combination of conflicted concepts. I cannot embrace the expectations of the world and ignore the shadow self; they go hand in hand with who I am as a person.
And this is what keeps me stuck in times such as these. I don’t know how to dive into issues that are prevalent to the struggle of identifying as a Black woman in America without offending or completely pissing off the very people that read this blog or that support me in my path. When I talked to my sister about this blockage she told me to write about the block itself.
I began to think about how to say I am pissed off, hurt, scared, embarrassed, confused, livid and insulted at the behavior of others and the insensitivity towards the brown and black people of this world. How do I express my complete disgust about reading the stories, like that of Trayvon Martin, and explain what it feels like to be a Black woman in today’s society and fear those things for my children without offending others who do not understand privilege in America?
What is the point in having a blog that talks about the intersection between African American women and Pagan spirituality? I know that point is to discuss all those things and more but I struggle in doing that when I am so hurt and angry that I am not able to separate the issues and express them clearly.
Race has become a topic of dissension for others the past two years, it has always been a topic of importance for us. I don’t know if it is cases like this new one, presidential candidates making overtly prejudice statements or having a Black president that has brought the thoughts of others to the forefront but I feel I have heard more blatantly racists crap in the last year compared to any other year. In the last month alone I have been called a “f**king Nigger” when a guy jumped out of his car in traffic, seen a picture of a street sign that was changed in Michigan to say “Trayvon’s a Nigger” and listened to someone talk about how Black people are the reason for the decline of our society.
And while I work to stay within spiritual space, be the High Priestess that I am and support knowledge to those who do not have it, sometimes it feels like I am doing the work of the Gods against a battle that will not be won in this lifetime. Thankfully I believe in reincarnation and the ability for spirit to bring wisdom back to the earth.
I don’t know if there is a way to express the challenges that everyday Black and Brown spiritual warriors face in today’s times without talking of the intensity that is created internally, it goes hand in hand. What I will say is this: the need for spiritual reflection becomes essential in these times because it leads to a means of clarity and wholeness that cannot be achieved from the outside world. The connection between my Gods and myself is paramount to survival in a world that wages spiritual warfare on the soul of so many people. Tonight I cast my coins into the sea to pay respect to Yemaya and invite her to send her cooling waters amongst us, washing us of so much hatred and judgment of our fellow spiritual family members. And I challenge others to do the same.
Moving beyond the disgust I feel at the racism, classism, ageism, sexism and all the other “ism’s” out there is a battle I am not willing to walk away from because it is important that we are able to be reflections to each other of each other. Some in society will always try to hold themselves above others in an attempt to define themselves, find importance and create a system that gives them a false sense of meaning by standing on the spirit of others. In my belief system the Gods are standing back and pushing the warriors to stand tall as a reflection of wisdom in the face of adversity. We have the words of the mother and father whispering into the megaphone in our minds and drowning out the talk of ignorance.
The point of this blog is to open a forum to speak truths that are not often spoken in our community, giving insight into the vast diversity and value of some of the others who hold a seat at the table of Paganism. Hopefully I can continue to turn up the volume of the Gods and override the sounds of racism that can easily occupy my mind. So the real question becomes what to do about all the emotions that take space during these times after being confronted with such racism against my own?
My first answer is to speak.
My second answer is to pray.
My third… to wait.
And while I wait for continued strength to speak of understanding, peace, love, strength and hope, I will ask for those things for myself in my own battle to understand and be understood. And throughout this process I hope to let my fingers type the words of this spiritual struggle and share it with those willing to listen.