Here are the panels which took place during this year’s conference.
All ghosts are Spirits, but not all Spirits are ghosts
Not having a consistent group of terms to speak about the disembodied entities (some of which think but perhaps not all do), it’s hard to talk about spirits. What makes that strange image on your photo: a spirit? A dust mote? Concentrated psychic energy? What are those apparitions seen in haunted houses and graveyards? Specters? Will-o-the-wisp? What’s moving the items in your house: A fairy? A ghost? A poltergeist? What’s that you feel: your dead brother? The woman who lived in this house in the 19th century? A nasty spirit who followed you home? Who’s running the planchette on the Ouija board: a demon, a spirit guide? Houdini? What took your book or scissors when you weren’t looking but no one else was there: a poltergeist? A pixie? Who fixed my screens, carried buckets of water, and swept the sacred grove? A land wight? House elf? Hobgoblin? Let’s put our heads together and see if we can figure out what to call these creatures?
Discussion of the fascination with the artificial being somehow yearning to be human, and that flirtation Vs vexation at that fear that technology will one day replace us humans in jobs Etc.
We charge objects
We put our energy into things we make/craft
What constitutes what has a soul and what doesn’t?
And where does the magic reside as our world becomes even more intangible (in the cloud) what of heirlooms?
Coming Out of the Closet in ‘Interesting Times’. Living in the Time of BLM
We have been blessed, or cursed, to live in interesting times. For many people, the BLM movement has highlighted the disparity of life experienced based on a person’s visible differences. In this world, can people of a minority, including minority faiths, feel safe coming out of the broom closet? Or any closet?
Death and Grieving in the Time of Covid
Death and grieving customs have always been a big part of the human condition. They help us cope with our mortality, and our losses. Every culture and tradition has them. Now, suddenly, with COVID and the need to socially distance, many of these customs are difficult or impossible to follow safely. How do we adapt? What are we missing? Are the adaptations working for us?
Magic beyond the Binary
There are numerous traditions that focus on the energy from binary contrasts – Male and Female, Giving and Receiving, Light and Dark, etc. But gender is a spectrum, not a simple binary condition. While some people align their gender identity with their assigned sex at birth, others have found their own way. Let’s explore what new magical approaches can be found when we approach sex and gender as the spectrum that it is.
Masculinity in Paganism
While for the last millenium women, goddesses and witches have been pushed down, the last half century has seen the pagan movement push back. But this has left some men, allies of women and gays, feeling conflicted. How can they celebrate their masculinity without triggering the women they love and respect who may still be suffering after-affects of personal or cultural trauma? Is it possible to say “The way I am is GREAT!” without implying that it’s better? How are we to raise the next generation of boys and men without unintentionally including toxic models?
Practicing Healing and Divination in Pandemic Times
Many of us had stopped offering readings and healing sessions back in March when the world went into lockdown. Some have emerged slowly, and yet others long to get back to “normal” but are also fearful. We also see that different states have different protocol for reopening for these types of services. What has worked for you? What did you change? Let’s collaborate and discuss protocols that we have implemented and methods that we have changed, and even possibly what has remained the same as we keep ourselves and our clients safe and reinvigorate our Spirit Journey.
Ritual and the Internet
t this point we all agree that lecture style classes work over video conferencing. Interactive discussions are fairly common too. But how far can we stretch this? Can you do effective ritual over Zoom? Spells via Google Meet? Divination via GoToMeeting? What are the limits, if there are any?
The Fair Folk – Tiny or Terrible?
For many of us, the first fairy we were shown was Tinkerbelle, or someone similar in the works of Disney studios. Yet, if we look at folklore we find they are frequently tall, lordly folk who are met with fear and/or veneration. Are they both? Are the tiny, cute beings of our childhood stories pure fiction? Or perhaps the older stories have grown in the telling? Our panelists will present their opinions on this curious transition in the lore