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Question of the Week: 113

Pagan Problem Children: What Can We Do About Them?

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 Author:    Posted: Sep. 8, 2002   This Page Viewed: 19,980,405  

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Times Viewed: 32,767

Reponses: 33

Lurker/Post Ratio: 992 to 1

Question of the Week: 50 - 7/16/2001

What's Your Magickal Focus?

What is YOUR magickal specialty? Herbalism? Healing Magick? Directing Energies? Invoking the Nature Spirits? How did you come to choose/decide to develop this area of expertise? How long did you have to practice and study before you felt reasonably proficient in your magickal focal-work area? Did you have a natural talent for this to begin with or did you decide to study this particular area of magick for another reason? What advice for developing skills or expertise would give to someone who is considering entering into your particular magickal focus-work area? What are the 'neglected' areas of magickal Work-you know, the not so glamorous service-oriented stuff that is really needed, but for some reason or another, not too many Pagans are motivated to develop or are interested in studying?

 Reponses:   There are 33 responses posted to this question. Reverse Sort 

Merry Meet! I Tend To Generalize, Not Wanting To Focus Too Much... Jul 16th. at 4:00:38 pm EDT

Rowan Ameth (Kutztown, Pennsylvania US) Age: 16 - Email

Merry meet!

I tend to generalize, not wanting to focus too much on one aspect, but I suppose I tend to lean towards energy focussing... I used to teach a little underground class on energy manipulation at my school, but it was shut down by the Dean of Students... I've noticed that I find it easy for me to focus energies and direct them. I don't know if it's normal or not, but I can drop down into a state of mind in which I can sense other energies (auras, spirits, etc.)... Well, anyway, that's my Magickal Focus...

Bright Blessings,

My Focus? I'd Have To Say Dragons, Witch Was Hard For Me... Jul 16th. at 5:43:20 pm EDT

Sam (Ruckersville, Virginia US) Age: 18 - Email

my focus? I'd have to say dragons, witch was hard for me since I have only found one book on dragons and I don't think thats enough I have to do most of the study myself through shamanistic tecniques. witch is a hard thing for me to do as my mind has a mind of it's own so to speak. and then I only have that one book to connect those exsperances with. Dragons had always been a major part of my life when someone introdued me to the craft my reaction was "you mean dragons are real?" anyone who knows me knows the love of dragons I harbor. and some inssist I have a dragon within me or a dragonic mannor. so my focus is working with dragons and thier kin witch I have found a challangeing and rewarding exspearance.

My Area Of Expertise? Predicting The Future. I Don't Use Tarot Cards... Jul 16th. at 6:58:39 pm EDT

Silver Owl (Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas US) Age: 14 - Email

My area of expertise? Predicting the future. I don't use tarot cards or anything; for as long as I can remember, I've had dreams that came true to the smallest detail. Too bad I can only see it from my perspective- it's unlikely I'll ever be in a disaster. There is one very fortunate thing about it- the only other kind of dreams I have are really strange ones. There's no chance of me confusing a premonition with a normal dream!
I am also interested in darkness. Flowers and fuzzy bunnies just do not suit me, and I am hard pressed to ever fall asleep before midnight. Also, my eyesight doesn't really diminish in the dark. I can find my way around with the smallest light and, hey, it's not like I can read the big E on the eye chart with my glasses off anyway!

Blessed Be.

Hello, I Love This Question Because In Just The Few Entries Posted... Jul 16th. at 7:13:49 pm EDT

Lynne-Renee (rural, STL, Missouri US) Age: 29 - Email

Hello, I love this question because in just the few entries posted (Mon.), it's given me a sense of what I do. I don't normally think of it because this is a normal extension of living here.

Being raised in the Ozarks, you just do things a little folkie anyway. I've done energy work and much weather-conjuring from my early childhood. Around 18 I decided I was getting my kicks out of doing it for others to see my "parlor tricks" so I stopped. As a tiny girl on the farm, I just liked talking to the winds and asking the Goddess for a shower to cool me.

A neighbor taught me about directing energy for healing and about intent and "empowering" things to produce certain effects. It was just called focus back then. I've been interested in the use of herbs and minerals since then. That has been directed to aromatherapy. Expensive, time consuming and such a gift.

I journey and divine to learn. I meditate to get *lots* of things. If you look at where all this goes, it is the fundamentals of those around me, the Midwifes of the Mountains (and the Bootheel!). Part healer, part priest. It's about healing on all levels.
That's what my aim is.

I Find It Heartening To See That There Are Others Looking Into... Jul 16th. at 7:32:02 pm EDT

Chad (Lake Dallas, Texas US) Age: 22 - Email

I find it heartening to see that there are others looking into the oh-so feared "Darkside" of magick. I've often worried if my interests into, for lack of a better term, Necromancy were abnormal. I've never understood why others were so wary of it. I suppose they have been too influenced by Hollywood and the occasional D&D role-playing game lich.

My specialty is magick connected with the dead, their spirits, and the energies released and/or remaing. The areas near where I live are filled with old graveyards, and missing graveyards (they had things built over them). So most of the time I am using whatever I can find to help spirits move on and disperse or use up their energies after they have left. I look to old superstitions for inspiration on how to contain them, but occasionaly dip into ceremonial magick for seals and gates. I'm thinking about looking into alternative uses for runes and the Tarot, using them ofensively rather than defensively. Minerva Waters's site ( has been helpful. I use a fishing net in my worship space for very effective spirit warding.

I've been studying magick solidly for five years and started focusing on Necromancy the last two of them. I have much to learn but my patron God Anpu(Anubis) is helping me.

P.S. If anyone from Scarmig's Religious Refuggees message board reads this, e-mail me please. I lost my bookmark and can't find my way back.

My Focus Is Actually On Focusing My Skills. I Am Very Good... Jul 17th. at 12:39:31 am EDT

Sundown (Wichita, Kansas US) Age: 43 - Email

My focus is actually on focusing my skills. I am very good at finding painful areas on people and animals, figuring out what they've done to themselves--I can even tell them exactly what structure (bone, muscles, tendon, etc.) they have injured and to what extent. What I am currently working on now is augmenting their own natural healing ability with my energy--very difficult for me to do. My energy just wants to merge with theirs in a general fashion, not focus on the particular injured part. It's a little frustrating, but I'm using meditation exercises to better focus my will.

Focusing on other beings' pain is a natural ability of mine, I can remember doing it when I was very young. I was in and out of the hospital a lot when I was a kid and I remember being overwhelmed by the sensations there. It was very scary. With effort, I was able to teach myself to focus on one person at a time; I didn't know why I was doing it, but I think it must have been a form of psychic self-defense.

As Wiccans, I don't think we pay enough attention to the importance of meditation and developing control over our energies. The techniques are boring (my neices really hate candle meditations) but I feel that we must gain the control over the energies ever-present that our ancestors had. I've been to some circles where a great deal of energy was raised, but not focused too well. We must become more adept if we are going to make a positive impact.

I Focus On Several Different Things, But It's Mostly Mental Tools & Specific... Jul 17th. at 2:18:12 am EDT

Calypso (Billings, Montana US) Age: 30

I focus on several different things, but it's mostly mental tools & specific (rare) in-person training I've received, and largely things I've come to understand based on what I've sensed in the course of practice.

One of the first things I sensed was through discovery in my back yard as a young teen. I could sense different forces from the different directional quarters, and I spent time exploring those differences. Most of the personal work I do now is time spent talking to and making requests of the directional quarters. This was something I discovered long before I understood what it was I was dealing with, long before I found out it was wiccan (or pagan), and lonnnnggg before I found any books which dealt with the directional aspects. This was such a huge source of power, and I've learned to interact very powerfully with it.

The backyard was also where I experienced the thinning of the veil, and I love to sit still and sense the changes in nature's energy.

I also had several issues I dealt with regarding setting spacial boundaries. Altho I discovered this on my own out of necessity, due to the intensity of some of the situations I found myself in I actually sought a little (rare) training on this - claiming space for myself. It also extends to mentally erecting spacial boundaries to effectively avoid negative attention or energy from unwanted sources. (Works really well for casting circles, too!)

I've had a little success with Silva training, scanning others (and even cars) for pinpointing the source of dis-ease. I have not pursued practicing this, very much, partly out of frustration with Silva's books which suggest weeks and weeks of practice on one tiny step at a time...

Most of my formal research has been in Hindu literature, and I feel that as a Euro-American genetically, Wicca is the easiest way to put into practice many of the Hindu/oriental beliefs I hold. I also greatly appreciate Wicca's eclectic philosophy of promoting personal responsibility for one's beliefs. My research into world spiritual lit. has hugely enhanced my affinity for universal symbology and metaphor.

My Magickal Focus? I Would Have To Say Meditation And Connecting With... Jul 18th. at 1:17:49 am EDT

Angie McMullen (Montoursville, Pennsylvania US) Age: 22 - Email

My magickal focus? I would have to say meditation and connecting with the Lady and Lord. Sometimes I use candles for this but most of the time I use my mind. I see everything as connected and in some sort of harmony. Each living thing in the Dance of Life touches the other. It gives me a feeling of peace and joy.
Gentle Breezes!

Ever Since I Can Remember I Could Just Feel The Energys And... Jul 18th. at 8:05:32 am EDT

river walker (Smyrna, Georgia US) Age: 31

Ever since I can remember I could just feel the energys and "moods" of everything outside. I started my study trying to heal a broken heart that just would not go away. A focus on healing both body and soul began there. I work with herbs mostly, some stones. I do this because I almost feel directed to. THere was no dicision making, and I never thought of doing otherwise. I'm working up to healing on a larger scale : beyond people and on to the general bad attitude of the world. I don't think I can change the world, but even bringing a calm to three or four at time for a little while helps - especially during rush hour.

Advise on the subject - Read every little thing you can get your hands on, even the stuff you don't agree with, and then do what your heart says.

My Magical Specialty Is Probably Off-the-cuff Spells. It's Sort Of Odd, Since... Jul 18th. at 10:20:12 am EDT

Richard Gant (Erlanger, Kentucky US) Age: 29 - Email

My magical specialty is probably off-the-cuff spells. It's sort of odd, since I've mostly read up on ceremonial magic. I guess you could say that I'm a "MacGyver witch" - I take what I know and then improvise with it based on what I have on hand. So, the only thing I can recommend for others who want to do it as well is to read up on the theory of magic. A lot. (I personally recommend Frazier's _The Golden Bough_, Isaac Bonewitz' _Real Magic_, _The Magician's Companion_ and _The Magician's Reflection_ by Bill Whitcomb, and anything by Scott Cunningham.) Get comfortable with patterns and correspondences and symbols, and then practice until you are confident in your abilities (energy raising and manipulating exercises are a must).

Laugh If You Will--but The Phrase Which Comes To Mind Is... Jul 18th. at 11:03:25 am EDT

Cat (Asheville, North Carolina US) Age: 34

Laugh if you will--but the phrase which comes to mind is "mundane magic." Or, if you like it better, the magic of things which appear mundane. The great gift paganism has brought into my life is a reason to see so-called ordinary events as all magical, and all part of the same system. I'm thinking, even, of taking a basic physics course (which is saying a lot for someone of my mathematical NON-talents) because I'm thinking more and more about the (literal) forces which drive the creek downstream, shift the tide back and forth, hold us to the world. Watching my husband bake bread or a possum shamble through the yard, feeling the muscles fueled by oxidation when I walk or run, lighting a candle, getting an idea out of nowhere--what's more magical than that? Generally I feel like the most magical thing I can do is to watch, and record, and remember. To bear witness to the way things are, all the time.

To do that is to participate in something greater than the single self, and it's to change that self as well. I go back and forth on how much I expect magic to alter the external world or its denizens to suit my liking, but the one thing I know magic can change is me. It can help me live in this world, as it is.

Don't get me wrong; I doubt if most of us come to this faith without at least a mild taste for costumes and trappings and play. I like candles and pretty robes as well as the next witch, I really wish I had access to more group rituals, and a really dead-on tarot reading impresses the hell out of me. But when the chips are down, what's most magical is what's been there all along, and what's there every day.

My Magickal Focus Is Chi, The Oriental "life-energy", Also Loosely Translatable As... Jul 18th. at 4:55:39 pm EDT

Ethan McCool (Chattanooga, Tennessee US) Age: 24 - Email

my magickal focus is chi, the oriental "life-energy", also loosely translatable as chaos. my manipulation of chi developed spontaneously as a self-defense mechanism against various emotional difficulties i faced as a teenager. I am not and never will be "reasonably proficient" in working with chi; the idea of controlling it is contradictory to the necessary mindset required to even notice it. I do not advise anyone to study chi; spending your life studying life rather than appreciating it is your loss. IMHO, most of the neglected areas of magickal work are neglected for very good reasons.

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