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Filling the Need for Understanding

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Over on the facebook group post- conference we are expressing how very good it is to see each other again. Although we only see some of our friends once a year, and although we are often running around from class to panel to class…, it is still soul-nourishing to be surrounded by those who understand, who grok, what we are doing. It happens at CTCW.

Sometimes at work, school, or even in our birth families, we have to constantly self-edit, self-censor, to try and guess whether saying something about what we do is going to suddenly make others see us as foolish, or dangerous, or simply too different to trust. It’s not simply hiding that we are pagans or witches from those who are ignorant about how normal pagans and witches are; some CTCW attendees are devout Christians. It’s not that we have learned herbalism, Reiki and other Complementary healing techniques; those are gradually becoming more accepted. It’s not hiding that we see ghosts, or do divination, or dowse; other people experience all these things. (They do also learn to not talk about them freely.)

You never know. You don’t know who might make some bizarre connection, some leap of illogic, whether from popular fiction, or a story told by a friend, or a personal experience that tno one could explain to them. Tehy might assume that if you believe X, you must be Y. Since they probably won’t say anything about it, you won’t even know that they’ve decided you may attend satanic orgies, or, less dramatically, that you are too gullible to make important decisions at work. We live with this sort of hidden prejudice all the time, and learn to ease into occult topics carefully. “I have a friend who…”

Oh, what a relief it is to be with people who you can tell about the spirit you talked to when you were a kid, or the magickal technique you use to get a parking space, and not worry! Like taking off a pair of shoes that don’t quite fit at the end of a long day, being about to speak without worrying about the audience is so wonderfully comfortable! We hope that, in time, (is a generation too soon?) that this will be possible everywhere, for everyone. Step one is to understand that it is possible.

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Thank you, and see you next year!

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While we stop and rest up from the build-up, enjoyment, and let-down after such an amazing event, it is impossible not to think about CTCW next year.
The theme next year will be stillness, quiet, waiting, preserving. Starwolf suggested the beautiful image of Crystallization of Form, as when water cools and ice shows the form we do not see when it is moving.

I think about the pictures of Dr. Emoto’s water crystals exposed to different words, and how in stillness comes clarity.

The outside world has been heating up, and we could use some “holding space” to calm and keep what’s precious to us. Coming, as I am, straight from the conference, I am overflowing with how precious everyone there is to me, and how you all replenish my inner springs of hope as well as knowledge.

We will take a few breaths, then start looking for the site and date for next year, and we’ll let you know as soon as we can! Thank you all for your support.

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Happy Occult Day!

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November 18th is Occult Day! (It’s also Fool around with a Guy with a Mustache Day, hence the image of Dr. Strange)

The history, origin, and the founder of the Occult Day are unknown. There is no mention about the year at which the celebration had first occurred. However, Occult has been existing in every culture, religion, and tradition. It refers to everything that is taking place beyond the normal human’s perspective. It includes the magic, alchemy, astrology, spiritualism, extra-sensory perception, religion, and divination. Occult refers to the “knowledge of the hidden.” It sometimes gives the meaning as the knowledge that “is meant only for certain people” or “must be kept hidden.” (Happydays-365)

Most often occultist is the study of a deeper spiritual reality that extends beyond the pure reason and the physical sciences. Occult is the life beyond the natural world for the normal people. Almost every culture and religion has the practice of occult. The Day is the perfect time to get involved with your inner self in a spiritual form.”

For goodness sakes, working most of the apps on my phone are ‘occult’ to me! Occult seems to simply be the stuff you don’t know. We seem satisfied to let someone else understand and handle our plumbing, electricity, health care and politics (etc. etc.) so we can study what we want to study. I want to study the mind-body connect, how to manifest a better life, heal with energy, communicate with plants, animals and other beings…. The folks who come to CTCW ARE more likely to understand things some folks consider “occult”, mysteries impossible to fathom. But the first step is to simply start. We may or may not understand the mysteries of sports, fashion, sitcoms or other “common knowledge”.

How do you decide what hidden things, things you don’t know, that you’ll put effort into learning? Have a happy Occult Day, and if you missed the conference this year, I hope you make it next year!

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Workshop: Get Action

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with     Rebecca Oubouzar
Life is beyond demanding, and “wine-and-bubble-bath” method of self-care is a booming business. But all the STUFF is still lurking outside your candle-lit soaking sanctuary. How do we handle it? How do we do so mindfully, without burning ourselves out? How do we do it when we’re overwhelmed, exhausted, depressed? Let’s find out together. (This class will include guided meditation.)

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Workshop: Somatic Prayer

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Somatic Prayer with Sean Donahue
What is your body’s deepest prayer? Shifting, focusing, and building sensation and emotion lie at the heart of my magic(k)al practice. It is our Wild Self, our Somatic Self, that can engage most profoundly with the Divine and the Infinite to create “change in conformity with Will,” Drawing on the insights of Wilhelm Reich and Victor Anderson and my own lived experience, I will outline my approach to working with embodied sensation in partnering with the living world for individual and collective healing and transformation. 90 minutes

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