See? Bookstores are dangerous for me…

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Yeeaahhh… I was left unattended in Barnes and Noble with a credit card… This is the result. Actually, this and a couple things for my kiddo for Easter/Ostara gifts, but still…  >_< *smoke wafts off debit card*

I regret nothing. “Ghost” was I comic I read in high school and while it may seem silly to others, she was a huge role-model for me.  Rediscovering her at this time in my life has to be fate. 🙂 As for the special edition “Death?” It’s Neil Gaiman. I’d read the phone book if he wrote it. :p

The Tarot and Trace books just looked cool. I’ve always wanted to expand what I can do with my tarot cards and any sort of spiritual advancement I’ll take. :p

This is about IT for me in regards to book shopping. I did a big shop last week when I took the demon seed to get pictures with the Easter Bunny and still haven’t finished all THOSE comics. Looks like reading isn’t my anti-drug, it IS my drug. XD

Pagan Blog Project – “R” for “Retribution”

Ma always taught me living well is the best revenge. In a way, she was right.

There is always something in you that wants the big confrontation after a fight; the epic conclusion worthy of the final episode of a TV drama. I’ve had those and let me tell you, they are so not worth the trouble. There is nothing soul cleansing about them. Every confrontation has left me weary and soiled. It didn’t matter if I was “right” or if it mended a broken friendship, there was still a sense something once in one piece would never be right again.

Sometimes when something ends, it ends for a reason. There is no real benefit to getting even or getting the last word. For me, the best revenge is to forget the whole thing. As a wise friend of mine said: “Don’t let them rent space in your head.” They’re not worth it.

Pagan Blog Project – “P” for “Practice”

Like many spiritual people, I try to see my faith as something I live, not something I do. I frequently question if I’m Pagan enough because I don’t go to many functions, I barely have time for proper rituals, I forget when the holidays are, and I can never remember correspondences off the top of my head. I always have to look them up.

So, if the proof is in the practice, what makes me a Pagan?

When I stargaze, I believe I am practicing. When I teach my little girl respect for the earth, I believe I am practicing. When I sit and take a breath, admiring how the air smells like grass and flowers, I believe I am practicing. It’s in these moments where we can all stop wondering if we’re Pagan enough and just enjoy the world.

Pagan Blog Project – “P” for “Peace”

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The most valuable time I can grab in my life is when I have peace of mind; when my thoughts are calm and serene. I don’t often reach this state through meditation, but when I do it’s just fantastic.

Usually, things are just crazy in my life. Like any working mother, I snatch at moments of peace when I can. Those moments to myself where I can just recharge and de-stress are what keep me going. But every so often, I’m walking home and the temperature is perfect, there’s a slight breeze and there’s soft music playing on my MP3 player. I look up at the twilight sky and there’s just enough clouds to make the light easy on my eyes. I just take a deep breath and smile. I stand up a little straighter and I’m ready to face whatever else the day my bring or leave the trials the day has already brought behind me.

Those moments are more precious than gold. Snatch ’em up while you can!

Pagan Blog Project – “N” for “Name”

Like many other Pagans, I assigned myself a magical name. It is a name only to be used between you and your deities; perhaps within your coven. I agonized over what it should be and even had the initials tattooed on my back.

I’ll be straight up with you all, I barely use it. I don’t regret the tattoo and the name fits me but honestly, in my spiritual practice, my very being resonates with my identity. Names are not important. Like I mentioned before, my practice stripped to it’s purest form is all about intent.

So, I posit the question to my Pagan fans and readers of this blog, how does your magical name (if you have one) factor into your practice?

Pagan Blog Project – “L” for “Live”

(image from here)

I will admit to you that I am not the type of person who wakes up thinking “My! What a glorious day! I must verily ponder ways in which to seize it!” I am more likely to wake up like this:

(from SIP but taken from this site)

Just driving to work is enough to put me on edge on some days. Between a full time job, my daughter, my husband, and my writing, it’s a wonder I am not covered in wrinkles with a full head of white hair.

Most of us can relate, I’m sure. You want to be the type of person who seizes every moment but we are lucky to have a moment to breathe. I say, take that moment. People around me may get annoyed or tease me when I will just stop and let loose a great heaving sigh but man, that’s the best sigh EVER. Better than running to get coffee, better than chocolate (yup, I said better than CHOCOLATE) because in that breath, I am aware of my being. I am present in the moment.

Then I can go back to calling every one idiots for tailgating and changing lanes with out a signal. >_< And for the love of all that’s holy, why can’t my kid pick up her frigging shoes!!

*sigh*

Much better. 😉

Living is making the best of whatever you have and realizing that you may not have time for a 20 minute meditation every night or be able to take hour long walks whenever you want, but that second where you can stop, breathe, then continue. At least that’s what it is for me now. And it’s not so bad. 🙂

Pagan Blog Project – “J” for “Just”

Notice the above is not “justice.” I am referring here to what feels “right” and what is “fair.” I am big believer in what is fair, and this may not be what justice IS to many people. It is enough for me to have the man who cheated on me unable to be with anyone else no matter how hard he tries. I don’t wish for the lawyer who tried to screw me over to lose his practice; I want someone to do to him what he tried to do to me. I don’t wish the same pain, I wish frustration to the same tune as my own because I believe that would be just if not necessarily justice.

I suppose part of me sees “justice” as “revenge.” But there in lies the added bonus of a punishment. While all actions have consequences, in a spiritual sense, I am not a fan of punishment. If you cause someone hurt, the consequence should be equal to but no greater than the original offense.

Well, sure I say this now but watch. Next time my kid talks back, I’ll yell a lot longer than the time it took to sass me. XD

Pagan Blog Project – “I” for “Initiation”

As a solitary, I am “self-initiated.” That’s pretty much the entire story. Pagans can (and have) sit around all day debating if that “counts” or not but you know what? Who cares? You walk the path, it’s what you are. So many churches squabble about little details, splinter off or try to annihilate each other. Do we really want to walk that line?

I did a formal ritual to initiate myself but I was practicing long before I did. Just like my marriage, I never felt I needed something “official” to declare my love to my husband or my gods. The paper’s nice and it comes with it’s perks, but without it, me and him would still be a loving couple and good parents. And I would still be a tree hugging, dirt worshiper. 😉

Pagan Blog Project – “I” for “Inspiration”

I guess I’m a bad Pagan in that I don’t have a super regular practice. I make up my rituals on the fly, communing with deity whenever I can in whatever manner seems best at the time. I do the same thing with my writing, rarely using a plan or an outline for my stories. I have a general idea and flesh it out as I go along.

Honestly, I feel this connects me more to my spirituality and my work than if I had a formal plan. The creation is visceral, like a lightening strike to my senses and it’s very invigorating. Nothing beats the sudden wave of words flying from my mouth or flooding through my soul. I truly believe nothing makes me feel more alive than the feeling of pure inspiration.

Sometimes, inspiration needs a kick in the pants. That’s why I enjoy feeding it with massive amounts of books, movies, anime, and comics. XD I’m not afraid of bad movies because that can be a great way to spur it on. The moment I mentally check out of a movie with the list of things I could have changed, I feel invigorated and justified in the time I spent watching it.

I also inadvertently serve as inspiration to others. Or so they tell me. It always shocks me when friends and family somehow believe I know anything about anything. XD But hey, if I am one of the things that inspire you? Go for it.

Pagan Blog Project – “C” is for “Coven”

I have been tempted to join with a couple of witchy friends for a working but I have never wanted to join an existing coven. Like many Pagans, I wasn’t raised in the faith. Ma sent me to an African Methodist Episcopal church till I was old enough to say didn’t want to go anymore.

There was nothing in particular that turned me off to this church. Eventually we moved into a new neighborhood and I never found a new one. I was more comfortable being Christian alone than in a group. That feeling carried over when I discovered Wicca and late when I decided the more general label of Pagan suited me better.

As an introvert and a person diagnosed with alexithymia, I find I have a better experience with my religion on my own. Sometimes I think it would be cool to at least have someone to talk to but that’s why the interwebz exist. 😉