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The Witch’s Walk

by on Apr.16, 2012, under philosophy, social remedies, special offers, witchy ethics

My dears,

There are those of you to whom the following subject is familiar, perhaps painfully so.  As for me, I find it as painful as fingernails upon a blackboard, and freely admit that I reserve the right to ignore anything said by, or promoted by, the like of extremists like Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh.  However, when it comes into your world and speaks to you personally, it becomes difficult to ignore.

Please let him shut up

I was working in my local food bank today.  I got to stuff sacks with groceries.  We worked hard, and couldn’t help commenting on the fact that the shelves had gaping empty spaces, were unusually empty, and we were serving more families than usual.  There were three of us volunteers from Trinity Episcopal, and I couldn’t help but think, ‘What nice people.  They are working so hard!’.  And I was right, of course.  They were nice, and we were all working very hard.  In the fullness of time, our conversation turned to life in these United States.

We talked about the increasing shortage of good food, the rise of prices, the fact that we were now only allowed to give peanut butter out to families with kids because of the recent doubling of the price, and the scarcity of our supply.

I noted that the ‘breads’ in our donate section were primarily sugary specialty treat breads, and that there was a distinct shortage of good solid complex carb bread, or for that matter, no whole grains of any kind.  No produce at all.  Lots of cans, though.  AND some good dried beans, a poor folks’ (remarkably healthy) staple.

We were just a gathering of country folk, talking about the hard times, the importance of being prepared for more hard times, about our pantries and medical supplies.  One of my companions was a retired nurse who had volunteered for deployment in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.  She had qualified opinions on what it took to keep body and soul together.  I contributed a bit of info about canning and food preservation.  We talked about clean water and how important that was for any community.  We spoke about community, and the need for people to help one another.

Good people, doing useful work.

Suddenly, one of the ‘good people’ began to talk about a book he’d just read.  It was called A Patriot’s History of the United States.  Now I’ve heard of this work.  It has the reputation of being a work of pseudo-history cum fantasy, written as a neo-conservative response to Howard Zinn’s award winning and critically acclaimed People’s History of the US, and was thus eminently ignorable.  Until Glenn Beck recommended it to his disciples and put it on the NYT bestsellers list.  At some point it has become required reading for neocon Christian Reconstructionists, the fascist arm of the Protestant party.

My new friend talked about reading this work in conjunction with the Bible, and how he’d come to understand that the US was a Christian nation, founded upon Christian principles, and that the Bible was historically real and a contract for all people.  I blinked.  He began to talk about how the US has a duty to lead the rest of the world to a God driven form of government, all inspired by Biblical truth.  I blinked twice.  All this while continuing to fill and distribute food to clients.

Since the conversation, as it often does down here in the American South, then drifted over to the usual hatred of the feds and especially of the president, and I felt that my head was about to explode, I broke my cardinal rule.  You know, the keep your mouth shut and your eyes open rule.

Surely you know that the Bible is a collection of myths and cultural stories, and not a recording of history?   I said, not so innocently.  It’s a book of mystical revelation, not facts!  Smile and blink.  That worked.  The silence was as thick as the fog on a humid summer at dawn.  Blessed, echoing silence.

After about a half hour of this blessed silence, my friend smiled and agreed to disagree, “The Great thing about this country is…”, and we continued our ‘good work’.

But my hair continued to stand up, and the feeling of tension stayed with me thru the afternoon, and all the way home.  When had my little cypress Episcopalian church, my bastion of Anglican tolerance in a sea of Baptist this and Presbyterian that and born-again tents popping up like mushrooms…  When had Trinity been infiltrated by this fascist belief system that no amount of logic could dislodge, that covered poisonous hatred so deeply that even truly good people were brainwashed into embracing it, even as they went about their day doing good works?

(For those of you who don’t know me, or who haven’t read my bio – I am a witch in the Western tradition.  My heritage holds traditional witchcraft, Western Mystery Lodge tradition, and Episcopalian Christianity.  I embrace them all, having also practiced Zen and Tibetan Buddhism, Islam, and Hinduism.  There is a place for all faiths upon the Tree of Life, and ‘each to their own’, to me, creates a beautiful kaleidoscope within the Purple Ray of mysticism.  Christ sits firmly upon the throne of Tiphareth, the Sephirah of the Heart.  And there are a plethora of Pagan Gods all over the place, up and down the Tree.)

To be sure, I am in no way bashing Christianity.  I’m bashing Fascism.  There is a rise in these groups that join fascism together with religion.  In Islam, they are Al-Qaeda and its knockoffs.  In Paganism, they are white supremacists.  A belief in divine purpose, combined with a nationalist jingoistic fervor, the belief that YOUR belief is the only truth and should govern how others behave.  How much scarier does it get than that?

The path of the Mage, or the Witch, is a path of tolerance.  We are attempting to understand, by listening and observing, rather than reacting.  We are human, surely, in our reactions to things that make us distressed or uncomfortable.  And it goes without saying that if you see evil in action, such as a child or animal being abused, you must act – lest by your inaction you become part of that evil.  And it is also true, and very difficult, that a Mage must judge their actions to know if by acting they will make the evil worse.

But how can you listen to the unseen, how can you walk between the worlds when your mind has locked closed on itself.  Your attention totally on your own thoughts.  Your doorways of perception shuttered down so that they no longer can see anything except the propaganda posters you’ve plastered all over the inside of your own head.  Somehow, I had to be able to get to a place where I could acknowledge that inside this little country church that I love, where I sing in the choir every week, there are forces of reactionary rage and blindness at work.  That within the hearts of these ‘good people’ exist both paradigms, tolerance and love combined with chaos and hate.

Similarly, I had to acknowledge that my local coven was circling not to celebrate the lights and the seasons, but working out their anger and hatred of everyone who had ever hurt them, a High Priestess acting out her fear and pain magickally, rather than experiencing the Joy of oneness with nature and the flow of Life.  I had to walk away from my participation in coven, something I’d done in 5 states over 35 years, and be willing to walk as a solitary once again.

As a witch, you must to be able to hold the dichotomy, the concept that one thing can have completely contradictory realities, the ‘real’ and the ‘astral’ for example.  The good and the bad in other people and their beliefs, in governments, in corporations, in life.  When you can see past the surface differences in things, people, events, places and times, then you can begin to notice the connections between them.  The similarities that reveal that we are all part of the net of the stars.  When you can see this net, these connections, then you will know when your magick has merit, when you are acting in concert with the flow of Universal Life Force, and not simply acting out.  You will be able to discern a Path between the Points of Light, and be able to avoid the pitfalls of Chaos.

As a witch, you will practice Silence, Observation and Discernment.  You will try to understand.  These practices will help open your mind to the Unseen, and make you fit to truly Serve others.

My loves, next time we will look at some magickal languages and symbols that you might wish to use to decorate your wand, in greater depth.  If you wish to read ahead, look at Freya Aswinn’s Leaves of Yggsdrasil, and anything you can find on the Ogham.  You might want to also get ahold of a good dictionary of symbols.

AND, for those of you who would like to participate in the eBook questionnaire, please read THIS ARTICLE, and let me know your opinions!  I thank you for your help.

Until then,
Blessed Be!
Marie Angeli

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Magick 101, and then some

by on Apr.14, 2012, under magickal info, special offers

Hello my dears!

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been working working working to edit Magick 101 the free e-pamphlet that I’ve promised my readers.

You see, I got a bit carried away while I was writing it.  I planned and structured and wrote, and then wrote some more, and then some more.  I ended up with enough material for a series of about 10 ebooks!  My intention has always been to introduce my readers to the different avenues and ways of magick as I have learned it.  There’s a LOT out there, and everyone’s way is different.  But I’ve thought that if I shared what I personally have learned over the years that I’ve been working on this practice of magick, that it might possibly help students to find their own way.  If I could share something that I know, that helps you in turn realize what you already know, or figure something out for yourself, or learn something new, then I’ve done what I committed to do.

That is the Great Work, as the secret lodges have taught for hundreds of years.  It is written over the gateway of the Oracle at Delphi.  Know thyself.  Practice your magick, and live the life that is yours and yours alone.

So anyway, here I am up to my neck in material, all of which will become books in time.  But of all this stuff, what should I introduce people to first?  What are the most immediate concerns or the most pressing questions that the majority of my readers have?  What do you really want to know, dearies?  I’ve come to the conclusion that I have only one real choice.

I want you to tell me.

Either respond to this post in the comments section, or send me an email directly via the Contact Marie Angeli link to the side of this page, or send an email to Me!

  If you’ve opted into the Newsletter list at the bottom of the page, I will also send an email out to you and you can respond directly to that, if you choose.  Answer one question or all of them, it’s up to you.  I will listen very gratefully to what you have to say.

Here’s what I’d like to know:

FIRST
•    If I were to write an introductory pamphlet on Magick just for you personally, what would you most be interested in?
•     What is the aspect of magick that you personally are most curious about?
•   What is your level of practice, and what things would you like to see discussed about the how-to of ritual?

NEXT
•    What are you most afraid of in approaching a magickal ritual?
•    What are you most frustrated by in your own magick?

LASTLY, and this one is very important to me…
•    What is your magickal goal for yourself?

Please when you write, also tell me a little about yourself and your practice, where you are metaphysically and geographically (country or city or in-between), and anything else you’d like me to know about you.

The primary reason I’m doing this is because I took my vows and initiations as one dedicated to service.  I want to write something for you that will be of use to you.  This is my job.

Yes, I can certainly take my written drafts and lock myself in a closet somewhere and kick out several magickal tomes.  I can post them on Amazon and the smile and walk away, and not think another thing about them.  I can do that.  But it is far more important to me to make sure that what I do write is useful to the people who will read it.  That’s really been my goal all along.

So I’m asking for your help with this.

And I look forward to hearing from you.

Blessed Be!
Marie Angeli

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All Text and Images © 2010 - 2014 Marie Angeli

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The Tao

Truthful words are not beautiful; beautiful words are not truthful. Good words are not persuasive; persuasive words are not good.
Lao Tzu
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