This week’s question from the Pagan Perspective YouTube channel is a bunch of questions the hosts have put together to ask the Pagan Perspective viewers.
Topic for the Week of 1/20: “: Our turn to ask questions! This time last year, we asked our viewers some questions! They answered in the comments, or in video responses posted to their own channel. It’s been another year, so what questions do we have for our viewers now?“
Monday Questions from Rich
What are your 2020 goals? And what steps are you taking to accomplish those goals?
I have a few goals for this year. The biggest of them is restructuring how I run the business so that I can spend the lion’s share of the year catching up on administrative tasks and all the crap I’ve been putting off because it isn’t a part of the business I’m enthusiastic about.
As for the steps I’m taking. I’m still struggling with getting on track with this, actually. I know it’s a one-step-at-a-time process, but I really feel as if I’m moving at a snails pace. Then again, this month has felt very discombobulated in nearly all areas of my life, so why should my goals be immune to that?
Who are your favorite authors?
Rick Hautala, Dean R Koontz (early works), Laurell K Hamilton, JR Ward, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Anthony J Melchiorri, Adrienne Lecter… to name a few. Obviously, I’m focusing on fiction with this question.
What tarot deck are you vastly consumed by the artwork of or the concept of?
The Stolen Child Tarot by Monica Knighton. This deck has started to actually overtake Tarot of the Hidden Realms, although at the moment they are about equal in my connections with them and preference for them.
What tarot deck do you love the concept of, yet find difficult to interpret?
The Wildwood Tarot. I’ve written about this before, but it turns out the issue was the system attached to this deck. After a few years intently studying this deck and the companion book, I finally cut off the titles on the cards. Now? It communicates beautifully. Apparently? It was the system that I was struggling with all along.
Do you craft? What kind of things are you bringing to life as far as a crafting skill?
God yes. In fact, I have so many different interests in the crafting department that I have a habit of overwhelming myself with projects and ideas. I’m a jewelry designer and run a business with that particular craft which includes a variety of crafts including resin molding, dremel engraving, metal clay, wire wrapping, and more. I also have projects that include nature photography, macro photography, fabric painting, scrapbooking/journaling, deck modification, etc.
What are some challenges that you are facing right now that you would care to share? How are you doing with that?
My biggest challenge at the moment is the fact that intimidation and fear are holding me back and making me waver a bit concerning stepping forward into the goals and projects I had wanted to begin dealing with in the new year. This involves not just my business, but also in the exploration of emotional depths that are new to me, and also the shadow work that I want to tackle. I’m just having a hard time finding the “oomph” to push into these things as I’d like at the moment.
Tuesday Questions from Cara at cutewitch772
What are you reading currently, whether related to your spiritual path or not? Books, graphic novels, fiction or non-fiction?
I don’t read a lot of books cover-to-cover, primarily because I don’t really have the time for it. Instead I mostly listen to audiobooks. Since audiobooks are mentioned below, though, I figured I would add here the books on my nightstand that I am slowly working my way through, and that I occasionally use for stichomancy.
These books are “Why Can’t You Read My Mind?” by Jeffrey Bernstein, “You Already Know What To Do” by Sharon Franquemont, “Nocturnal” by Wilder, “I See You. I Am You.” by Casey Jo Loos, re-reading “Tarot Shadow Work” by Christine Jette, and “The Signature of All Things” by Elizabeth Gilbert.
What about listening to — audio books, podcasts?
Currently I am listening to “The Dark Bones” by Loreth Anne White. I listen to a lot of mystery themed books on audiobook, and I recently was given a huge list of mystery podcasts to listen to as well, which I’m excited about exploring.
What books or other resources would you recommend to other people to learn about the path YOU are on?
This is a really difficult one, as I didn’t learn my path from books and I rarely read books about paganism or witchcraft. What I would recommend to learn more about my path, though, is anything that has to do with indigenous plants of the pacific northwest and their uses medically, in alternative medicine, and in folklore and magical circles.
What different subjects or practices would you recommend someone learn about in order to get a sense of the many things that may make up your personal path?
Botany in the pacific northwest, magical herbalism, aromatherapy and herbal medicine, Wicca (sans the deity aspect), Buddhist ideology, non-theist spirituality, grounding via the earth, energy work and clairsentience, animism, forest bathing, liminal spaces and physical hedge walking, forest Fae and the mythos surrounding them, as well as the energy properties and spiritual uses of stones and crystals.
What are you watching? Movies, TV, etc.
Emergence, Bull, Stumptown, New Amsterdam, Stephen Colbert, Shadowhunters…. That’s about it currently for stuff I’m keeping up on. I have quite a few things I want to watch, but I don’t have a lot of time for that sort of thing. I also like The Price Is Right, Family Feud, and America Says.
Tea or coffee, or both, or neither?
I actually prefer water and milk, to be honest. But I do also drink herbal teas and hot cocoa. I do not drink caffeinated tea or coffee, as my energy reacts unpleasantly to caffeine. I also don’t drink sodas, because I find them too sweet and I find the sensation of carbonation to be unpleasant.
What area do you live in, and what season is it currently? How do the local climate, flora, and fauna influence your practice (if at all)?
I live in the pacific northwest. Specifically, in the peninsula area of Washington State of the USA. It is currently winter here, and we just had what is very likely the only snow that we’ll have all year just last week. It’s already melted away.
As is obvious by my previous answers, the flora of this region are very strongly incorporated within my practice, which includes a good deal of herbalism and plant energy, and a lot of bonding with the rainforests of the area and the liminal spaces found there. I have a special connection with cedar trees, sword ferns, and lichen, as well as damp earth.
Do you grow plants — either indoors or out — at all? If so, what kinds?
I grow plants indoors year round, and most of them are rotated out regularly as I am often rehabilitating plants that are in need of some TLC and have been brought to me by others. I nurse them back to health, and then give them back. Permanent residents in my home include a medium sized peace lily plant, a couple of Christmas cacti, and a crapload of aloe plants.
Outdoors in my personal space, I grow plants on my balcony including flowering annuals, a lilac tree, herbs and ivy, as well as cultivating a healthy diversity of indigenous ferns, lichen, and mosses.
Outside of my personal space, I work for a farm that grows raspberry, corn, and pumpkin crops. I also work part time in a (primarily) advisory position for a local nursery where I am responsible for monitoring plant health and teaching employees how to best care for the plants, and handle pests and disease. During the summer months, I also “moonlight” from time to time for a local landscaping company when they need extra help.
What kind of music do you listen to? Do you think it’s influenced by the music you were exposed to growing up?
I listen to just about anything but country music, as the twang in country music makes me twitch. My current preferences seem to rotate around a blend of indie music and k-pop featuring male vocals. I have gone through phases in the past where I’ve enjoyed classic rock, 80s alternative, techno / electronica, dance, 70s rock, and a variety of other venues. I also very much enjoy classical music, especially where the cello is featured prominently in the pieces, as well as crooners of the 50s and 60s.
I don’t think my preferences really influenced at all by what I was exposed to growing up, but has a good deal to do with my synesthesia and whether I find a song pleasurable or unpleasant in relation to my synesthesia reactions.
Do you use music in ritual and other spiritual practice, even if it’s not “Pagan music”? If so, what kind of music and how is it used?
I don’t. Not that I haven’t and wouldn’t be willing to under certain circumstances, but I don’t want the distraction of music during my spiritual practices, and due to my synesthesia, music is very often a distraction beyond just background noise that most people find it to be.
Wednesday Questions from Yucca at Magic and Mundane
What is paganism to you?
The basis of my existence. I’m not entirely sure how to explain this, but it is the foundation upon which how I see the world and how I see that it works. A basis for reality as I know it.
What is your vision for the role that paganism will play in your life in the future?
The same. I grew up in a faith that didn’t quite fit, but was close. And when I struck out on my own I honed that path to the one that fits for me. I’m very comfortable in my path and happy with it. I’m open to adaptation and adjustment as new ideas and experiences shape my view of both the world and reality, but I doubt sincerely that I’m going to be making any major life-altering changes in this area.
What would you want to see Paganism becoming both in society, but also as a community? Where would you like to see it going or see happen?
Acceptance has been a slow thing coming concerning religious diversity in the world, and to be honest… also in the pagan community. In both cases you have those that insist that their way is the only way, and wish to force others into boxes that do not fit them. I would like to see this become less and less of an issue over time.
Thursday Questions from Meghan aka. Subirasri
What does being Pagan bring to your life?
Refreshment of my soul and a depth of connection with nature. Being pagan is that “good morning” stretch and deep breath of air outdoors on a crisp morning after a long, cozy sleep under warm blankets.
What spiritual goal do you have for this year for yourself?
I would like to do some work with the shadow that I encountered last fall, although I’m not sure if that’s a spiritual goal so much as a self-care goal with a spiritual aspect. I would also like to find the pathway that will allow for contact, communication, and a chance to get to know my guides… as opposed to ignoring their presence and allowing them to just “do their thing” in the background.
What progress would you like to see the Pagan community make this year?
I answered this above in the Wednesday questions, but I would very much like to see more acceptance of diversity.
Friday Questions from Alduin Royeau
What pagan based practice do you preform to protect yourself and family from sickness such as the flu?
I don’t have anything that is targeted directly at the flu or colds, things like that. I do regular cleansing, and I have wards in place for negative energies.
What do you think a Pagan based Ghost show would look like?
Probably people helping spirits with closing out their unfinished business so that they can move on.
Are you able to see, hear, or smell things from the other side?
I cannot. Apparently, if last fall was any indication, I do have some latent mediumship ability, but it is unexplored.