Weird Scenes Inside the Gold Mine

I spent this past weekend at PantheaCon, that big Pagan festival out here on the West Coast. It was mostly fun, absolutely exhausting. Unlike most years I didn’t have a whole lot to do. I didn’t make the schedule, but I did get to play “guest priest” in a couple of rituals which was fun. What follows are a few random observations from inside the gold mine. Kings and Queens of Pcon (Magicians parody, I’m Q.)... Read more

Beyond the Bubble

This past weekend one of my Facebook friends posted a status update that caught me a little off guard. She wrote that “If any of my friends likes the page of Donald Trump, or has friends that do, they should unfriend me immediately.” I thought it was a little reactionary, especially the last part. I have friends that like the page of Donald Trump, and probably for a variety of reasons. Some of them no doubt want to keep up... Read more

So You’re Going to an Indoor Festival (What to Bring & How to Survive)

Ah February . . . . it’s full of cold, rain, snow, and various other things many people find unpleasant (though I’m a big fan of rain), but there’s a bright spot: a couple of Pagan festivals in the middle and at the end of the month! Even better, there’s another one in March! Yay. From now until March 20 my living room will be a giant mess of travel bags and charging cords and I love it! [caption id="attachment_7990"... Read more

5 Non-Witchcraft Books for Witches

Apparently these lists of “5 Non Books” are a thing, and since I was asked to play along I thought I would. Since I don’t see all of these books I’m going to list as essential parts of a Pagan path, I kept this list specific to Witches. Thanks to Gwion for starting the trend and to John for continuing it, and to Tempest who we just know is going to do one of these lists herself! To be honest,... Read more

Ozark Witchcraft, Superstition, and Folklore

When talking about the history of Modern Witchcraft one of the things that people like to ask me about is “Witchcraft in the Ozarks.” Sometimes this will lead into people talking about how Gerald Gardner visited the area during his brief stay in America in 1947-48. That’s not out of the realm of possibility by the way. Gardner was living with his brother in Memphis Tennessee during his stay in America, and the Ozarks were just just up and around... Read more

Bad Day? Be a Pagan!

I’ve had a bad week. Now I’m not asking for anyone’s pity or sympathy here, we all have bad days, weeks, even months sometimes. And when we do have bad days, it’s easy to forget about the little things that make life better. For me, many of those little things are Pagan related, and doing them doesn’t fix everything, but they do make everything feel a whole lot better. Flower from my walk. I’ve been... Read more

Building a Pagan Library (And I’m Giving Some of it Away)

I’ve been thinking a lot about books the last year and a half. Part of that’s because I wrote a book about books called The Witch’s Book of Shadows, but some of that is because I simply like (love?) books. Writing books has resulted in me buying me more books than ever, most often because there’s research to pin down, along with all the rabbit holes I end up falling into while researching. Shameless Self Promotion.... Read more

Paganism in the Age of Trump

I’ve been trying for the last few months to put my feelings about a Trump Presidency into words. I’ve vacillated between outrage, being hopeful, and walking around muttering in a constant state of despair. As I write this Trump has been President for a few hours and all I can say is “so far so bad.” And I think that’s a fair judgement to make considering his cabinet appointees, his disaster of a press conference, and his inauguration remarks which... Read more

Witchcraft Before Wicca: Three Important Magickal Books

Modern Witchcraft is sometimes referred to as a religion of the books, and even if that’s an overstatement, there’s no denying that the magickal community likes to read. The popularity of Paganism (and by extension Modern Witchcraft and Wicca) is due in large part to books. Until recently it could be difficult to meet other magickal folk, but by the 1960’s books on magick, the occult, and even Witchcraft were generally easily available at bookstores and local libraries. But even... Read more

Show Your Work: Silence & Skepticism in Modern Witchcraft

There’s an individual who lives near me who loves to talk about his hidden knowledge of Witchcraft history. In his telling Wiccan-Witchcraft has a truly ancient lineage and can be traced back to ancient Hellenic Paganisms (not the modern day re-constructions, but the thing being done 2500 years ago). To say that I’m skeptical of such claims is an understatement. This individual and I have access to many of the same research materials, and while I certainly don’t know everyone... Read more