Category Archives: Esoteric

Serpent's Tongue – interesting?

Hey you RPG-playing friends of mine,

I funded a kickstarter program, which I thought actually looked cool.

I’m curious what you think of it, in a meta-game sort of way.
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/500894669/serpents-tongue-a-new-magick-experience

NOTE: this is not an add to get you to also join in.  🙂

Basically, take your average TradingCard Game, like Magic:TheGathering, where you play the role of a magi and must defeat your opponents.

The spells are “spoken” by decoding a little sigil/glyph on the card that corresponds to a key with “letters”.  Kinda like the secret decoder rings we used to have.    Simple level 1 spells are 3 syllables it seems.  (FUS RO DA!) and if you don’t say it right, you mis-cast the spell. (the pronouncing is on hte bakc of hte cards so others at the table can verify it’s correctness or not.

Instead of a deck, you put your cards in a little soft-cover “SpellBook” (that looks like it’s essentually a single card-holder sleeve on each page) to add to the feel of casting spells from your grimoire.

I really REALLY like the meta-idea of learning the spells “rote memory” the more you cast them, and get better at decoding the Glyphs on the fly as you familiarize yourself with the key over time.

What you think?   😀

Sprogling’s been playing Magic and made up his own “spell game” with his lego guys, so it’s ramping up to TableTop time in the next year or so.

I also kinda like the idea of this concept as a springboard for “learning about Magick”, as in the Hermetic sort as part of a more general study of different churchy type things.  His pen-pal in Brazil is wiccan so we’ve been discussing the differences between our more Unitarian/Methodist visitings, and the sort of ‘pagan stuff’ he finds at Fairy Festivals.

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Filed under Esoteric, Questions, Random, Technology, testing, Uncategorized

Hot Coals and Horses

Quick blog post as there’s lots swirling in my head that needs to filter down, but for now, I wanted to post and get in the habit of posting regularly here again…

This past weekend has been interesting, and rather tiring, but all in a good way.

Saturday, I drove to Rochester for another fire-walk, which was a smaller group than the one at my own house, but was nice. More intimate, and seemed to connect better with each person, probably due to the smaller numbers.
The fire was great, and I was chuckling with the hostess about how the coals seemed “colder” as they glowed under our feet. This of course was most likely due to my own energies being much higher.

Before the walk, I also bent a 6ft length of 1/2 inch Rebar (steel rod). Similar to this video. It was absolutely scary, but so inspiring after I had done it. Truly a sense of “you can do anything if you put your mind to it.” I can simply not put into the proper words right now how frightening it was to look down the length of cold metal sticking in my throat… and again how absolutely Amazing it felt when it bent and I hugged David (the man on the other end of the rebar).

Since I was not distracted by playing host, like I had been when the walk was on my property, I was able to let go a little more, and really focus on the fire, our Intentions, and all that. Thus, the coals seemed not hot at all.

At one point, I even made an effort to walk immediately after they were re-raked, along a little trail of piled extra-glowing coals. Never felt a spot of heat, no “kisses” from the coals, and quite amazingly un-phased other than the heat revving up my Joy even further. I was In The Zone, and it felt wonderful.

After the walk, I got to spin my fire-poi a bit, with hand-drumming accompaniment, which was AWESOME! I’m finding that spinning really is a moving meditation, if I get my mind in the groove for it. Similar to drumming all night around a bonfire. It’s Prayer-on-fire. AWoo!

Pretty serious intense work, that stuff though. I was wiped out afterwards and was a tough 3-hour drive home afterwards. Whereas drummnig all night is energizing, Firewalking seems to be really “Transformative Work”, instead of “Sacred Play”. They both have their benefits, but it’s kinda neat to notice the differences and shifted focus required for each activity

* * *

As for the horses portion of the title, Sunday, after the firewalk, we stopped by to visit a nearby stable.

One of the people I know at work had mentioned to me late last week that she had a horse which needed a good home. She was well kept, and very trained, but the price of the stable had gone up, winter was coming (so more $$ for grain, etc), and she had not had time to even visit her Equine much in the past few months due to other family priorities. She knew my wife had horses on our property, and since auctions would just sell off her horse to the highest bidder, she’d rather ask around for a local place to visit and know the horse would be loved.

I, myself, am still really nervous around horses. I can feed them, and brush them, and such, but the thought of actually riding them makes me nervous and tense. Still, learning to ride a horse was something on my “bucket list” when I met my wife, which sadly is still on my list. So I offered to go meet “Jackie”.

When we arrived, she was saddled up, and My wife put the horse through the paces, trotting, running, steering around the open field, and such. Then she asked me to hop on and walk around a bit.

Surprisingly, I learned really quickly that this horse would listen to me. (I’ve never ridden a REALLY trained horse, which may contribute to my fears.) I’d drift the reigns to one side, and the horse turned to that side. No “yanking their head around” needed, like our still-in-training horses. Wow!

I’d touch my heel to her side, and the horse began to trot. I’d say “Woah” and without even pulling back, she’d slow to a walk. double-wow! (At this point, I’m sure you folks who know horses are jsut shaking your head with a smile, laughing at how silly it sounds to hear a trained riding horse actually follows instructions, but it was new to ME.)

Long story short, I actually kicked her into a fast lope. That scared me, so it didn’t last long.

However, the surprising thing, and main reason why we are taking this horse home with us soon, is that the fear I had moving fast was not directed at the Horse. All my past fears were concern that this wild animal I’m sitting on was going to hurt me, even accidentally. With Jackie, I wasn’t afraid of her at all. I was worried that my untrained riding skills would make me fall or lose my balance, but it was totally directed inward, rather than externally.

For a few second there, in the middle of “EEEK! I’m gonna fall off!” was a grinning Joy. I was riding! Same joy I felt after walking coals unscathed. This was awesome!

Click the little thumbnails for larger pictures!

…So now I’ll be learning to ride a horse properly. Firewalking really does Transform the walker.

SEA / AHO! ❤

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Filed under Esoteric, Festivals, firewalk, Random, Stories

Great Pan is Dead, Long Live Pan!

This phrase has been stuck in my head for a few days now, starting while I was inspired to make my “Wild Place” in the yard, and then reading a mere day later in a Percy Jackson novel that the Pan of that story dies. “Grover finds Pan and learns the truth about his disappearance and that he, the God of Wild Things, must fade away and leave the job of making the earth green again to Grover, Annabeth, Percy, Tyson and everyone else on the planet.

This resonated with me all week, in light of our barn collapsing, which makes the property look decidedly less ‘Green-natural’ and more ‘trash-heap’ until it gets cleared up. In true microcosm/macrocosm fashion, this just keeps reminding me what a mess we’ve made of things, and how nice it used to, and will look again.

I helped create the BP oil spill after all, by continued use of petro-commercialism, as Anne said recently. I also helped set aside a patch of yard to be tended respectfully and minimally, and am looking into composting toilets and rainwater collection barrels. Each of us has potential for Change, both good and bad.

So, it seems this moon cycle is one where I find myself musing upon Pan more often than not. Pan in his many facets of untouched wilderness, his voice of Panic, and his [pro]creative drive.

Strangely, I have never been one to ascribe to any particular Pagan-themed diety in this manner. After a solid Lutheran upbringing, with appropriate Christians-tinted faiths, my own Pagan path has tended more towards generic elementalism, pantheism, and non-specified Druidic leanings. (Plenty of explanation of my spirituality on this blog’s archives.)

I had a brief stint of Faerie-slant which still sticks with me a bit. But the Gentle Folk are no gods. Otherwise, I’ve generally paid mere lip-service to other cultures’ Deities in acknowledging their existence on some level, but never joining their ranks. I liken this to knowing the Governor of Minnesota exists, but living in New York, if that makes sense. Yet everywhere I’m looking lately, I see horns. My own facebook page photo, for example, then wearing those self-same horns for fun while working outside last week “to be silly”. Looking back, are those silly head-decorations becoming something totemic? I don’t think so, but still, I’ve had them for years and never worn them much before now.

I even found my penny-whistle while cleaning up our closet on Thursday, and enjoyed waking some sleepy half-memories in my muscles by trilling a few songs out off my fingers. It’s no pan-pipe obviously, but the symbolism is surprisingly apparent when seen in retrospect, as they weren’t done with Pan in mind at the time. It’s interesting.

Did any of you readers with a more personalized relation with a particular Higher Power approach things in a similar manner, or were you off searching for a name specifically? Or, I suppose in other words, did you find your connections, or did They find you?

I also wonder if I’m just reaching for synchronisms that aren’t there. A bit of spiritual Apophinia, perhaps?

I also wonder if the webmistress of “The Gods are Bored”, or a Druid’s Apprentice, could get me a proper interview with Pan? *chuckle*

So, while I’m musing on all things goat-boyish, here’s two songs to entertain you. I just re-listened to them at work, which brought me merrily through that afternoon doldrum that hits around 1:30.

Enjoy. (and thanks to Nettle for sharing the songs initially with me recently!)

http://www.youtube.com/v/uxCPkg_Ee3Q

http://www.youtube.com/v/hztAzxNdL8c

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Filed under Dreams, Druidic, Esoteric, Faerie, Moon Muse, Outdoors

Awkward catharsis

I’ve been doing a little meditative work for “The Circle of Shamans Without Borders” over the past two weeks. Not every day, but as best I can, and often closer to 10:00 pm than 7:00 pm on my timezone.  Still, it is something that at least lets me feel -slightly- better about ending my day.

I have a deep-rooted Dread (yes, with a capital D) regarding society today that I have tried to keep under wraps and dismissed as over-dramatic conspiracy-theory-ish folly.  Then again, I also think that dismissing such things is what got us to this point to begin with.   Thus, the unbalanced mood lately, and inability to focus on the details of things.

Recently, however, I found myself feeling altogether different about the whole topic of the Deepwater Oil disaster.

I was sitting outside last night, trying to visualize my opening ‘circle’ and was struck by a profoundly angry sky.  Physically, it was overcast and warm; a wonderful summery evening to sit outside.

Metaphorically (Etherically? Astrally?  Mentally?  I’m not really shamanic in my practices), it was an oppressive weight crushing me to the grass.   I cried.  Real little-kid-upset tears, at being berated so sternly by the Sky.  I was an ant, helpless and afraid, and scraping my meager scraps of glucose from the blades of grass and gathering dew while dreaming of building a fortress in the sandbox.   It hurt my heart, and cut my spirit.   The oil, it flows, and there’s nothing I could do about it, except be blamed for everything I did to cause it.  I was at fault.  Knowing even a single human being, made it my fault.

Honestly, it was scary as all heck, and something I’d prefer not to repeat again.  If that’s shamanic work, I’m not wont to continue it.  Yet, I think I should.

I should, because after being left feeling raped and shattered, I picked up the shards of Me and went back inside to get a drink of orange juice.  I needed something cold and soothing.   I began to feel Lighter then, and a strange sort of hopeful and bittersweet about the whole situation.

Like lancing a boil to drain the fluid before it infects the surrounding tissue, I felt relief, but not closure.

I’m left today at work with a sense that while there is nothing I can immediately do to affect the oil spill, I should continue to apply energies to the healing of the land.  It’s nature responding to humanity’s greed, and rather than fight upstream against the flow, I need to merely turn into the current and help steer away from the rocks below.

It sounds totally depressing to try typing into words, but I can’t help but feel better that it happened somehow.  Fish will die, coastlines will need cleaning, and a terrible tragedy has been unleashed.  I do not deny this.   I feel bad not feeling worse that it happened, though.

The cynic in me thinks maybe this waste of oil will speed along the endgame, so that it’s not quite as deep a trough we are sliding into? The optimist in me feels conflicted with the caring/feeling person in me that maybe lots of stuff dying will help more stuff stay alive?   (Hiroshima stopped the war, after all)

I’m not sure what I think.   It is almost a sort of Ennui, but more cynical, and resigned at Fate.

But I think a bit differently today than I have been.

Bear with things… it’s a weird river I’m rolling on…

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Filed under Dreams, Druidic, Esoteric, Healing, Moon Muse, Technology, Uncategorized