deercvlt

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2022-05-18 19:02:45

    There were many reasons why I stepped away from archaeology & academia just 16 months post-PhD but the one that still angers me most today has to be the ways in which the Institution™ categorizes folklore vs science when it comes to Indigenous people. Ancestral knowledge of the ‘Old World’ is seen as a form of early science—curiosity leading to rigorous study and eventual advancement—with their fairytales and folklore viewed as purposefully allegorical. The Indigenous people of Africa, Turtle Island, and the rest of the so-called Americas never got that same respect. Outside of a handful of tokenized and understudied societies, most Indigenous ancestral knowledge is viewed through the lens of folklore—and no grace is given to allegory or metaphor or philosophy, either. The assumption is that our people can only think in literal, concrete terms. And it’s fucking insulting. There’s this joke in academia that if archaeologists don’t know an artifact’s usage they’ll deem it as ‘ritualistic purposes’; and it’s funny or whatever but nine times out of ten those artifacts are from [insert literally any Turtle Island or Mesoamerican nation] and not from much-older Greek civilizations. But it’s not well-studied because we’re not well-respected, and therefore nobody bothered to ask our still-living people who are very much aware of what said artifact was meant for (spoiler alert: not ritualistic).

    Early on in my first Master’s program I got into a huge fight with a white professor who wanted to use a widely misinterpreted SuPeRsTiTiOn from MY tribe as an example of a persistent folktale. The folktale being that: Chiricahua Apache women don’t take baths during pregnancy bc we think the water is evil. It is true that, after being moved onto the rez, birthing + postpartum women were becoming ill when they bathed. This isn’t some ancient happening stoked by mythology—this is 100 years ago to recent times; midwives saw it happening and acted by cautioning against bathing. My grandmother, an Indigenous midwife, saw it play out and is very hesitant to recommend bathing to birthing women on the rez today. This isn’t because she or any other Chiricahua thinks water is evil; it’s because water quality has been so horrific that it quite literally was infecting the womb at its most vulnerable time. Had this been a European society, this knowledge would be considered evidence-based but since we’re Indigenous, they slap some contrived faux folkways mythos onto it and call it superstitious.

    This is just one example of what happens on a constant basis when it comes to communities who are being oppressed by the same systems that set the standards for what science, history, and art are.

    It’s maddening and sickening to me to this day.

    (Tangentially, the next time I see a non-ndn upload or reblog our artifacts and crafts and tag it as “primitive art”, I’m going to scalp you. You’ve been duly warned)

    stormbornwitch

    I’m currently working on a research paper which discusses the perception of witchcraft among scholars and can I just say...

    I’m thinking of calling my paper Why E.E. Evans Pritchard was a complete dick and how he fucked over witches for centuries:  A lingering perspective on witchcraft

    wolverineandpearls

    Accurate, but perhaps not the snappiest of titles…

    stormbornwitch

    Damn, I thought I struck gold with that one. How about this one:E.E. Evans Pritchard’s internalised racism and its effects on the perception of witchcraft

    wolverineandpearls

    *nods sagely* I like that one.

    lehydra22

    Is there anyway you could link some of your resources or your essay when you’re done? I’d legit be interested in reading it.

    stormbornwitch

    Academic Witchcraft Research

    I’m sorry to say that I can’t post my paper on tumblr because even though I’ve already submitted it (I got a HD!) I’m hoping to get it published in an academic journal once I add to it and I can’t do that if it’s already freely available to the public.

    I’m happy to post some of my resources however! Below are some of the really interesting recourses I found while researching for my paper. These are all the ones with actually useful witchcraft history/knowledge however I’m leaving out all of Pritchard’s racist bullshit. Please keep in mind that a lot of these sources view witchcraft in an anthropological or historical light and are very obviously written by people with little to no experience with actual witchcraft so some are quite funny/ downright hilarious to read. However some of these sources are written by witches (you can tell by the way they write – they have a personal understanding of how shit works instead of looking at it from an outside perspective)

    -          A Neglected Aspect of Witchcraft Studies - Francis Hsu (1960) The Journal of American Folklore

    -          Abracadabra - Sorcery and Witchcraft in European History - WR Jones (1971) The History Teacher

    -          Anthropological and Historical Approaches to Witchcraft Potential for a New Collaboration - Ronald Hutton (2004) The Historical Journal

    -          Essex County Witchcraft - Mary Beth Norton (2008) The William and Mary Quarterly

    -          How Do You Know She’s a Witch Witches, Cunning Folk, and Competition in Denmark - Tim Tangherlini (2000) Western Folklore

    -          Invented Culture Invented Religion The Fictional Origins of Contemporary Paganism - Michael York (1999) Nova Religio The Journal of Alternative and Emergent Religions

    -          Marriage or a Career Witchcraft as an Alternative in Seventeenth-Century Venice - Sally Scully (1995) Journal of Social History

    -          Masculinity and Male Witches in Old and New England, 1593-1680 - EJ Kent (2005) History Workshop Journal

    -          Mass Media and Religious Identity A Case Study of Young Witches - Helen Berger and Douglas Ezzy (2009) Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion

    -          Modern Pagan Festivals A Study in the Nature of Tradition - Ronald Hutton (2008) Folklore

    -          Out of the Broom Closet The Social Ecology of American Wicca - Gary Jensen and Ashley Thompson (2008) Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion

    -          Some Modern Books on Witchcraft - Sona Rosa Burstein (1961) Folklore

    -          The Disenchantment of Magic Spells, Charms, and Superstition in Early European Witchcraft - Michael Bailey (2006) The American Historical Review

    -          ‘The Divels Speciall Instruments’ Women and Witchcraft before the 'Great Witch-Hunt’ - Karen Jones and Michael Zell (2005) Social History

    -          The European Witchcraft Debate and the Dutch Variant - Marijke Gijswijt-Hofstra (1990) Social History

    -          The Pursuit of Reality Recent Research into the History of Witchcraft - Malcolm Gaskill (2008) The Historical Journal

    -          Urbanization and the Decline of Witchcraft An Examination of London - Owen Davies (1997) Journal of Social History

    -          Who is a Witch Contesting Notions of Authenticity among Contemporary Dutch Witches - Martin Ramstedt (2004) Etnofoor

    -          Witch Doctors, Soothsayers and Priests. On Cunning Folk in European Historiography and Tradition - Willem de Blecourt (1994) Social History

    -          Witchcraft - British Medical Journal (1922)

    -          Witchcraft for Sale Commodity vs. Community in the Neopagan Movement - David Waldron (2005) Nova Religio The journal of alternative and emergent religions

    If you would actually like to read the racist bullshit thanks to Pritchard I’ll post it separately (or maybe send them in a message) but I’m gonna say it straight up that it is not pleasant reading AT ALL. A lot of it demonises African cultures that practice witchcraft while being highly condescending and a complete dickhead.

    I didn’t enjoy reading his crap (and the academic papers that were influenced by his crap) but it did provide me with heaps of evidence to show “Here – look at this mountain of evidence which shows what a massively racist prick Pritchard was! And look at the devastating impact this has had on the perspective of witchcraft in the academic community! Look at how he has poisoned the academic profession with his bullshit!!!”

    - Marci

    visardistofelphame

    Raising the Fetch

    Doppelganger, double, spirit body, unfamiliar self, second self, specter body, fetch. Many names are given to our fetch. The part of us that is us, yet is not. To gain familiarity and ability over one’s fetch can result in powerful magic. Our witch ancestors would call upon their fetch to do their own bidding: shapeshifting, possession, haunting, spying, stealing. Many things can be done with this.

    It is a talent that takes time to master, but once done a witch can merely send their fetch out into the world to fulfill their own desire. Below, I have created a ritual of raising one’s fetch, to become familiar with it, and to know it. For from knowing it, one can call upon it at anytime.

    For this rite, the following will be needed.

  • A mirror (the bigger the better)
  • A candle and candle stick
  • Incense (mugwort would be best used)
  • A knife
  • A chalice
  • Wine, Beer, Ale, or Mead
  • Optional: Flying ointment (I find that it works well either or)
  • When finding a private space, you shall light the candle and incense, then turn off the light. The candle will be the only source. Make certain that the candle’s flame reflects in the mirror, along with your reflection.

    Take your drink and pour it into the chalice, “Borram…Borram..Borram”. Chant this as you take yourself into this moment. When you have calmed and left outside thoughts, you will hold up the chalice, “I call to you, and drink to you.”

    Take a drink from the chalice, then place it down. Standing up, it is time to strip. Do it slowly and make certain you watch your reflection closely. From here on, you’ll do your best to keep your gaze upon your reflection.

    Begin to move in a calm and fluid motion. Watch every movement and swap. You will fall into a gentle sort of dance. Continue this, until you feel a change in sensation in your thoughts and feelings. Allow yourself to slip away from everything else, and to become entrapped in this moment.

    When you are ready, take the knife and press the flat side of the blade against your forehead. Make sure to keep your gaze fixed upon the gaze of your reflection. Gently touching your skin, move the blade slowly down your face, neck, and stop at your chest. You will then move the knife to point it towards your own chest.

    Take a moment to feel your power gather at a center point in your chest, then gather towards the tip of the blade. Once ready, you will raise the knife tracing up your chest, neck, and chin. When you reach your mouth, you will open it and feel the power be pulled out and follow the blade.

    Channel the power towards your reflection and tough the tip of the knife against your reflection. Do this as many times as you need.

    Upon the final time, you will raise the knife high above your head and keep your eyes on it, “EKOS EKOS, ARISE ARISE”

    When you look back down at your reflection, your fetch shall begin to appear. Stare into it’s gaze for as long as you can without blinking. It will begin to move, change, and even shift into different shapes.

    When seeking to finish, you merely need to close your eyes and breath deeply. Feel your entire self return, before you blow out the candle and turn on the light.

    This rite can be done many times in order to strengthen the connection with your fetch. Though, it may leave you dizzy and your eyes tired.

    The most important thing is to become familiar with the fetch self, to know it, how to call to it, and most of all how to feel it.

    tetra-tumbles

    This seems wrong and dangerous and I would not recommend anyone doing it!!!! I’ve been searching on the internet for the meaning of the word “Ekos” and I found nothing! I would say stay away from this and do not attempt it because who knows what you could summon/allow to posses you! Remember, mirrors are portals. Do NOT do this. Bad energy written all over this idea!

    ioqayin

    If you search around @visardistofelphame‘s tumblr, you will find where they got the word “Ekos”. It is from the power chant: “Eko eko azarak, eko eko zomelac, etc…” The meaning of such words has become lost to time, though if you search around you can find people’s attempts at translation. 

    This ritual is beautifully written. How can you say that it is evil if you have never tried it? The “bad energy” you’re feeling is your own fear, ironically caused by a fetch spirit in distress. The ritual here has a clear intention; nothing can be summoned from it unless the ritual user wishes it. 

    It is said that some initiated witches would be shown a mirror upon initiation. It is my belief that perhaps someone stood behind them who was in a grotesque masque and told that this was their familiar spirit. Or perhaps they neophyte would actually see a spirit standing behind them, or in front of them. 

    Mirrors -are- portals, you are quite correct, which is why Visardist used one. 

    There are many ways to call up fetch, but this is certainly a more visceral and reality altering method. Try it before you judge it, I say. 

    normal-horoscopes

    Probably a question you're asked a lot but what is it about quack occultism devolving into cum wizardry?

    Note: Referring to quack occultism as whatever the hell Crowley and his ilk/acolytes were up to.

    Ah, the term “quack“ doesn’t really apply to occultism. Crowley wasn’t a quack he was just racist and predatory and generally gauche.

    Its less that occultism devolves into cum-wizardry and more that cum-wizardry has always been a part of occultism, regardless of its culture of origin. The act of insemination, the creation of a new life, will always be a deeply magical thing. Oftentimes, the older the magical text the more cum-wizardry it involves.

    The modern examples of cum-wizardry practiced by Crowley have their roots in ancient fertility rituals, but their usage has mainly become a mechanism for weird goths to have spooky themed sex. Never been my vibe personally, but I’m not going to judge unless it turns into a fully-fledged sex cult.

    Coincidentally, in the last years of his life, Crowley’s drug-addled magical practices devolved into a sex cult.

    ralfmaximus

    Wasn’t Jack Parsons (founder of NASA’s JPL) mixed up in that? He supposedly blew up his home (twice?) with explosives trying to open a dimensional portal under Crowley’s tutelage and formed an ‘occult’ sex club with L Ron Hubbard. 

    They tried to get Robert Heinlein to join in on the fun but Virginia Heinlein put the brakes on their involvement because all the wife swapping made her nervous.

    They never did get that dimensional portal open but they sure had a lot of orgies.

    Was that the same sex club?

    normal-horoscopes

    Different branch, but yes, same sex club.

    Hello! Due to some personal circumstances, I am opening up my services for tarot reading and devotional writing. I am an experienced reader, and I have studied tarot for 10 years. My pricing will reflect this, although I offer reduced/sliding scale rates for BIPOC+ folks.

    Kofi: ko-fi.com/mysticmusings31920

    Tarot Services

    -I do not accept questions pertaining to health or finances. I also do not accept deity identification questions.

    -I am willing to help you work through particular messages you may have received from a deity or spirit. However, I am not a medium and should not be the only source you rely upon for such questions.

    -All other questions, such as those pertaining to love, spirituality, personal growth, etc. are fair game.

    -Please DM me prior to making a payment. For readings, you can expect to receive an online document with an in-depth explanation of the spread and each card in it, as well as any personal notes.

    **I am not a medical or mental health professional, and my services are no replacement for seeking advice from these sources. These readings are intended for entertainment purposes only.**

    Short Reading (3 cards)- $7

    This reading will examine the relationship between three cards as it pertains to your question.

    General Reading (5 cards)- $12

    I generally recommend a five card spread for questions pertaining to things like the month or week ahead, full/new moon readings, holidays, etc. It is when you want a bit more information than can be provided by the short reading, but does not necessarily require the depth of the Celtic Cross or Shadow Spread.

    Persona Shadow Spread (7 cards)- $20

    This reading takes a look at your shadow, and how its influences in your subconscious realm affects your conscious reality. This reading also provides advice for how to "defeat" (i.e merge) with the shadow self, in line with the theme of Persona.

    Celtic Cross (10 cards)- $25

    This is a good reading for when you want to get into the meat of an issue. I also recommend it if you would like a more in-depth examination of your question, particularly if you don't have something specific in mind.

    Intuitive Pull- $25

    I select a random number of cards to answer your question. I often average between 7-12 cards for this type of reading, although the exact number can vary. I prefer this spread for creating a more personalized reading to the querent.

    Decks Available:

    -The Marigold Tarot

    -The Dark Wood Tarot

    -Tarot of the Divine

    -The Halloween Tarot

    -The Nightmare Before Christmas Tarot

    -The Rider-Waite Tarot

    -The Wild Unknown Tarot

    Devotional Writing

    I have written my own hymns and poems for the past four years. Some of them may be found on this blog (selenightwitch), tagged under #original poetry or sometimes #original prayer.

    If you are interested in commissioning me for a devotional piece, please DM me first so we can discuss pricing. I can be reached through my main Tumblr blog or Instagram at victorianeldritchcryptid.

    windvexer

    id actually really like you talking about practice when youre low energy/someone struggling with mental illness. it can be hard to keep my relationships with spirits since i suffer from depression. and raising energy/getting into alternate/heightened headspace is troublesome due to that. any good tips, beside stuff like "stir your tea three times and say depression has no power over me and tadaaah youre actually a witch" or something dumb like that??? :0

    This post may have helpful information for you: Ok, so you want to practice every day?

    I am not really the best practitioner to ask about practicing while depressed. I used to suffer from mental illness, but I've been without it for long enough now that I'm speaking from the outside looking in. But I have a few ideas floating around.

    In general:

    Gods and spirits do not experience time the same way we do. It is not fair to you or to them to assume such. A month without communication may seem like an eternity to you, but can be a blink to them.

    Have you ever had a friend where you guys just don't talk that much for weeks or months at a time, but whenever you start chatting its as if you never left off? It's the same concept.

    If your spirits are telling you, "we won't love you any more unless you torture yourself over communicating with us as much as possible," get rid of them and make new spirit friends.

    And if they're not saying that -- let yourself off the hook. You should be a proud and wild fish swimming free in the ocean, your path shouldn't make you feel trapped against unattainable standards.

    There are some spiritual relationships which can be very intense and the spirit does demand high levels of communication - these would be laid out to you. If this wasn't created as an expectation for you, no need to project false needs onto spirits.

    Definitely do not promise to return to communicate again at a set time. "I promise I'll be back soon" is usually a promise made out of guilt and stress, which is only going to compound guilt and stress if we can't follow through.

    Try building a shrine to your spirits in a place where you can regularly see it.

    Do not:

  • Make promises that you'll leave offerings or communicate at X intervals
  • Leave disposable offerings that you have to clean up in short order
  • Avoid making promises to spirits but still pressure yourself to try and attain certain communication/offering goals, as if there is somehow an internalized golden standard which you believe you are always supposed to strive to fulfill even though it's making your life worse and harming your path and spirituality.
  • Look at the shrine. Talk to it. Interact with it when you feel like it. Too brain-drained to even say hello? Then don't say hello.

    Did you find a neat rock? Do you have some change in your pocket? Fancy some incense? Leave these things on the shrine as a gift.

    Here is the offering ritual:

    "Hi everyone, I have this and I want to give it to you." *place on shrine*

    It sounds like you are attempting direct psychic communication with your spirits. That is draining and perhaps not suitable for casual encounters.

    Try using a tarot deck, pendulum, runes, or other tools.

    Also - just talk to them. Literally just talk to them. Do it internally if you like. This may also be called prayer, if you can untangle it from connotations of worship.

    Do not:

  • Make yourself jump through hoops before you're "allowed" to interact with the shrine or your spirits. "Before I leave this offering I need to do a counted breath exercise so I can see how the spirits feel about the offering--" nope. None of that.
  • Discount the power of one-way communication - you just talking/praying to them without using tools or psychism to hear anything back.
  • Believe that your spirits are powerless in your life or don't care about you unless you constantly open yourself up to two-way communication
  • Believe that you must achieve certain physical standards before the spirits want to be with you or help you.
  • Definitely do:

  • Ask the spirits for help whenever you need it.
  • Understand that the spirits like hearing from you and listening to you even if you can't hear them back at that time.
  • Closely examine your path or practice for areas where you, A) want to practice something specific, but B) require yourself to undergo extra techniques or ritual steps before you're allowed to begin, so therefore C) often do not end up practicing, or only end up practicing unrelated techniques you didn't really want to do to begin with.
  • The following posts may be of help to you:

  • List of low-spoons spells and magic activities
  • Ask: Modifying practice to be less draining
  • Lowest spoons candle dedications
  • So I’m feeling a little down
  • Straô |  Every spring, eight weeks prior to Easter, a procession of flower-draped draft horses rides to the beach to wash their legs in Zeeland’s sea water. The straô, an age-old tradition on the island of Schouwen-Duiveland, concerns six villages. The evil spirits, which according to old tales would have gathered in the horses’ legs, are rinsed out.

    Lees hier meer over het straô rien.

    The Púca [Irish/Celtic mythology]

    Púca, also Pooca, are creatures from Irish mythology. Though they can take many different forms, they are most often seen in the shape of a horse, and sometimes they take on the form of a human. These creatures can sometimes be seen at the coasts and fields of Ireland. Púca are generally evil creatures, causing property damage, breaking fences and disturbing farm animals. Physically powerful beings, they have been known to pull ships away from their course and into rocks or cliffs, causing them to sink. Púcas have also been known to eat people. Its hooves were razor sharp and could be used to slice victims to ribbons, as if they were claws.

    They are not always evil, though. One story tells of a young man named Phadraig, who befriended a Púca by offering it a coat. Since then, the creature visited Phadraigs farm every night to mill the sacks of corn into flour. Out of gratitude, the young man made a fine silk suit for the Púca. The Púca was happy and put the suit on and left to travel around the world, wanting to see and experience the world of humans. Phadraig unexpectedly lost his magical helper, but by this time he made enough money (with the Púcas aid) to afford an education. Much later, when Phadraig grew up and fell in love with a girl, the Púca returned to offer a wedding gift, which was a golden cup with a magical drink in it that ensured the couple’s happiness.

    What I find really interesting is that I came across several stories from different countries where the hero helps a magical spirit who is then grateful and starts to perform farm labor at night, until the hero gives him a set of clothes and the spirit leaves for a variety of reasons. Including, for example, a story from Flanders. It’s a common theme in folklore.

    Sources:
    http://kirsman1jakarta.blogspot.com/2013/03/
    https://aminoapps.com/c/urban-legends-cryptids/page/item/puca-celtic-demon/8anY_EquXI4R8p6KrgBYW46EaMKZMkG5a
    http://karlshuker.blogspot.com/2011/12/fairy-hound-and-pooka-crypto-folktale.html

    (image source 1: Ceara Finn) (image source 2: englishweb.ekablog.com)

    actually a very cool psychic trick, if you're trying to be a psychic:

    I'm on a quest to rework my regular practices to become much lower energy.

    Psychism - whether it be through Sight, Hearing, Taste, Touch, Smell, Knowing, or any of the senses - can be A) difficult to learn for the first time, B) draining, and C) often frustratingly symbolic or vague.

    Today I remembered a trick I used to do :) it works really well.

    Don't open your mind to detect just whatever comes up. Instead, choose a very specific set of symbols and see whether or not they are activated.

    Let's say you're playing a game with friends where you try and guess what element an object is charged with.

    Reaching out and feeling whatever vibes come can be very symbolic, like "I sense depth and coolness, darkness. I get the same feeling as looking at a mountain drenched in rain. But there is a strong flow here that moves everything..."

    Try not doing that. We all agreed at the start of the game there would only be the four classic elements used, right? So why are you trying to see whatever vibes? You just need to see one of four things: a symbol of earth, air, fire, or water.

    Specifying to yourself what each elemental symbol looks like, then reaching out to see which one appears to you: "I see an inverted triangle and the color blue."

    It sounds stupid simple but it works ridiculously well.

    Don't accept all input and then put the onus on yourself to interpret it. Choose a highly limited symbol set, and see which symbol appears.

    Need to check on whether or not an object is charged? Maybe you can choose the numbers 1 through 3. If you hear "One," the object is without charge. If you hear "Two," it's moderately charged; "Three," fully charged.

    A game where you check each other's emotions? Tell yourself what to do. Tell yourself what symbol sets are allowed. Maybe you just tell yourself, "look, remind me of a memory where I felt or observed as near to that emotion as we can get."

    Just tell yourself what kind of symbolism you want!

    This works for spirit contact too. "Tomato, you're showing me a desert but I don't know if that's because you need to dry out or because you're too dry. Please show me water if you want water, or a desert if you want to dry out, or food if you need fertilizer."

    In a big way, psychism is just establishing a mutual language between you and the hidden world :) it can become a lot easier if you define and explain symbol sets that make sense to you - whether you are defining them to yourself or to the spirits around you.

    "I've started to get strange psychic input since I began my practice but I don't know what it means, how do I find out?"

    Maybe the spirits/your subconscious are working on trial and error just as much as you are! Establish and communicate what things you understand and are prepared to receive.

    If you want tips:

  • Choose small symbol sets. You can have lots of them, after all. You don't need one all-encompassing symbol set for every kind of reading you do.
  • It is helpful to have a "not here" or "something else" symbol in each set :)