Thursdays Speakers

Speaker Spotlight: Raven Kaldera

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Raven Kaldera is a Northern Tradition shaman, intersex/transgender FTM activist, erotica educator, Ordeal Master, Speaker for the Transgendered Dead, homesteader, diviner, psychic vampire, herbalist, polyamorous parent, and author of many, many books, articles, and short stories. Raven is a builder of bridges between worlds, a crosser of boundaries between communities, a Reweaver of the Web. He is the Dreamer Whose Dreams Come True. ‘Tis an ill wind that blows no minds. www.ravenkaldera.org/
This year’s workshops:

The Language of Omens: Connecting with Gods When You Can’t Hear Them. 
Many people complain that they can’t see or hear the Gods, and indeed that gift is not necessarily given to everyone. However, with time and devotion, it’s possible to work out a system of omens with the willing deities who are dear to you, and thus know that They are listening and communicating. This class will discuss how to develop a system of “walking omens” with Gods, and how to cross-check to know when a cigar is just a cigar and not a Sacred Sign.

Lessons from the Kingdom of Freaks and Monsters: Real Diversity in Pagan Groups. 
As Pagans, we like to think that our groups are open to a wide variety of people … but are they really? How do we include and integrate the spiritual needs of people who are queer, transgendered, polyamorous or in other alternative relationships, physically or mentally disabled, non-neurotypical, legal minors, parents, god-bothered, or otherwise not the usual run-of-the-mill idea of a Pagan? Many groups today are moving away from the “initiatory mystery cult” model and embracing a more open, congregational format, and as such will be seeing more of the above sorts. How do we meet the needs of as many people as possible, and when do we have to say “I’m sorry, not doable” to people? This class will discuss real accessibility from the point of view of a very welcoming congregation. 

Shiva Aghora: Eating with Lepers and Untouchables. 
Aghora is the aspect of the Hindu god Shiva who looks after lepers, untouchables, and anyone who is looked down upon in society. Who are your lepers and untouchables? (Think of that really, really annoying person you cringe to see.) We’ll be learning about the lepers and untouchables in our lives, and doing a small ritual to Shiva Aghora to help us find patience and compassion for them. We’ll also be asking Shiva Aghora for help when any of us become the lepers and untouchables every day in the world.

You can buy several of Raven’s previous CTCW workshops as MP3s on our Shop page)

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Speaker Spotlight: Kirk White

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Kirk White, M.A., L.Ac., is a healer, teacher and author. He has been a practicing Witch and Magician since 1973, a psychotherapist for 22 years, and a licensed oriental medical practitioner since 1994. A past co-president of Covenant of the Goddess (North America’s oldest and largest association of Witches and Wiccans), and past director of the University of Vermont’s Parapsychology Program, he also founded Cherry Hill Seminary, a professional Pagan ministry program with faculty and students worldwide, and Standing Stone Academy, a Pagan healer training program.
In 2006, Wildhunt.org named him one of the “25 most influential modern living Pagans today.” In addition to working as a consultant with Pagan seminaries nationwide such as the Aquarian Tabernacle Churches’ Woolston Steen Theological Seminary, he is a licensed acupuncturist/ Chinese herbalist, registered psychotherapist, legal Pagan minister, Freemason, and adept in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. His skills and interests include traditional healing modalities, various magickal and spiritual traditions, and models of Pagan leadership and ministry.

Kirk is the author of the books Adept Circle Magick: a Guide for the Advanced Wiccan Practitioner, Advanced Circle Magick: Essential Spells and Rituals for Every Season, rEvolutions: The Elements of Mastery, Operative Freemasonry: A Manual for Restoring Light and Vitality to the Fraternity, and Masterful Magick: A Guide for Advanced Wiccan Practice.
Or you can listen to some previous workshops:

Ritual Triage with Kirk White aka “How to Avoid the Ford Pinto Ritual” or Diagnostic Skills for Energy Healers – Kirk White.

This year: Freemasonry & the Golden Dawn:  Old Men’s Mysteries for Modern Men (and Women too!)
This class is an exploration of the history, activities and practices of these two ceremonial groups. We’ll debunk myths, give away “secrets”, talk about magick, and explain how these groups can be used to transform one’s self and one’s world. 

Introduction to the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
The Golden Dawn has had the single largest influence on Western occultism in modern history. The concepts, associations and practices of almost every subsequent magical group, including Wicca, modern Paganism and Thelema, were inspired by the Golden Dawn. Through study of hermetic qabalah, astrology, tarot, alchemy, theurgy, astral travel and other spiritual/ personal development tools they became the “gold standard” of ceremonial groups. Join us as we explore some of the history, beliefs and practices of past and current Golden Dawn temples. There will be some “show and tell” and a chance to experience GD ritual firsthand. Prerequisites: An alternative to the Freemasonry and the Golden Dawn talk.

Witching Wellness  with Kirk White
The witch walks the line between the worlds, weaving the forces of the plants, the stars, the elements, the spirits, magic and medicine, mind and body, to bring healing (or harm when necessary) to themselves and their communities. Placed into the magical worldview of medieval European folk medicine and magic, yet also drawing on Chinese, Ayurvedic, and Greek humoral medicine, we will begin to explore how these forces are woven together and can be used for health, happiness, growth, and balance. We will cover basic theory, learn and practice assessment/diagnostic methods, and learn how to choose or create the right treatment strategy based on those findings. Beginners will leave with a firm foundation on which to begin growing while more advanced healers will gain strategies and skills to better define, refine, and deepen their current skill set. (90 min)

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Speaker Spotlight: Seán Pádraig O’Donoghue

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Seán Pádraig O’Donoghue is a poet, herbalist, and witch living in western Maine in the shadow of a chain of mountains that stretches south to Georgia and north and east across the sea to Ireland and Scotland.  Prior to becoming an herbalist, Seán was a political organizer in movements for peace, human rights, and global economic justice, and a freelance journalist documenting the human and ecological impacts of U.S. policies in Latin America.    He grew up near Boston, a short distance from where his great-grandparents first landed when they arrived from Ireland, and just on the other side of the woods home of a maternal ancestor executed in the Salem Witch Trials.    http://www.otherworldwell.com

This year he will be teaching Hawthorn Medicine and Magic, Rewilding Masculinity, and Somatic Prayer .

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Speaker Spotlight: David Rea

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David “Tyr’s Dragon” grew up on a horse farm just outside Elk Neck State Park and spent most of his childhood wandering through the woods and exploring nature. The inherent balance of nature is what inspired him to seek out a spirituality that matched his observations of the wilderness. In 1996 he began exploring the Wiccan religion as a solitary practitioner. He is a 2nd degree priest in the Assembly of the Sacred Wheel and coven member of Fellowship of the Ancient White Stag coven in the Silver Spring, MD area. David graduated from the inaugural class of Gryphons Grove School of Shamanism (located in Silver Spring, MD) in 2012. Dave has been a board member of the Sacred Space Foundation, a Mid-Atlantic esoteric conference, for over 8 years. Dave’s extensive education in the sciences of math, physics, and animal husbandry continually inform and expand his innate spirituality. His experience leads him to no longer see a line between spirit and science; they are intertwined. Dave’s specialization in energy work and creation of sacred space is from combining numerous geometric and physical theories with energy/chi work. This work is useful during his shamanic work as the Guardian/Ward for Gryphons Grove. Dave also uses these skills when working on house clearings\warding.

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Speaker Spotlight :Davis Sprague

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davis was a spiritual wanderer, drinking deeply of many different schools of magick and mystery. These include QBL, Western Ceremonial, Chaos Magick, Wicca, the old craft of the wise, Quakerism and Sufism.  Fifteen years ago discovered the ecstatic, earth-based magick of Reclaiming Witchcraft, and has identified as a witch since that time.  davis has taught at many Reclaiming intensives and camps, as well as other pagan retreats. Vocationally davis is a healer in the Hudson Valley of New York, their life-long home.  davis is also active in the Stewart Tradition of the craft and the local wiccan church. davis lives with eleven dogs and one human daughter, on land their family farmed for generations, and enjoys walking, studying, doing magick and playing music.

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