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Personal Profile for...
Magickal Path: Hopeful Student of Wicca
Age Group: Adult
Sun Sign: Leo
Occupation: Disabled and so Retired
Relationship Status: Married
Sexual Orientation: Straight
Located in: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Likes: Helping people with their problems, especially by coming up with insights to geopolitical problems [small problems and big ones are often the same amount of work (as below, so above!) , so I may as well look to solve the big problems].
Dislikes: #1 -- Back-stabbers. #2 -- Pollution. #3 -- Wasting resources (particularly natural ones) . (Lacks of understanding I'm actually very tolerant of.)
The key to making nuclear fusion work is to use magnetic lasers. The problem is that they don't exist. The answer to that was what I gave our country.
I have to pull the Fire Alarm here. I know of no other way to get this to the appropriate people.
It is well known that Philadelphia is one of the top-ten Unfriendliest Cities in the world, accompanied by DC, NYC, and Atlantic City. I personally have seen a massive neglect in concern for others, as well as an astounding and completely-unearned egotism here. This city is a Problem -- and one that is affecting both Congress and UN Headquarters (DC and NYC respectively) .
Now, about Wicca here in Philadelphia -- I see the Wicca concentration in Philadelphia as probably being the Goddess's way of attempting to hold off whatever is rotting this city. I see Wicca here as an attempt at a cure.
Which means that whatever is ruining Philadelphia isn't native -- it's being sent in.
My greatest need is to worship and serve the Goddess.
However -- since last time I was thrust in totally unprepared -- if there's a next time, when She's ready I'll be ready. That's why I read.
The first witch I ever met was a high school classmate named kathe who deliberately befriended me and who we all adored intensely. Kind beyond words, she was truly a radiant being. I knew her about two years before she died tragically -- we were literally devastated. I think of her every day, as I believe several of us do (at least I did until a bizarrely unfortunate event in February 2012, but I've resumed that) . I still "worship the ground she walked on".
I've been pagan-oriented since 2008 (attending occasional Beltane and Fires of Venus festivals, and, for awhile, some open Wiccan celebrations) . I was hurt badly (I test to be a Highly Sensitive Person) by a Wiccan-related problem that I had no prior inkling was even a possibility, from which it took so long to recover that I've decided to stay a solitary practitioner. My ailing wife of over six years is herself a long-time solitary practitioner because she does not wish to follow anyone else's path.
My profile used to be virtually a resume. I've been to some unusual places in the U.S. and done many things I never expected to. I have, for example, been to the bottom end of the Bright Angel Trail, on the refueling floor of a nuclear power plant, and naked on the lawn at Beltane. I have created articles in Wikipedia, and ridden side-saddle in an open-door Huey. Through it all I've always had the greater good in mind, and my lack of self-centeredness has too often led to a large amount of personal heartache.
(About nuclear power and the superior fusion power: I saw that nuclear was intended to be a better-than-fossil-fuels stopgap solution until the far-cleaner fusion power came along -- which, 37 years since my Physics degree, still has yet to happen. The proper solution is a mix of solar/wind/bio/geo/tidal/hydro, but there simply is no political will to tackle this problem as long as the world remains obsessed with wars over oil. Fusion power is the necessary intermediate step, that should stabilize the environment, replace the country-side "dirty" power plants with clean ones inside the cities, solve half of the balance-of-payments deficits, and halt the incessant battling over oil.)
I exist to serve others -- not in a submissive way (unless the situation calls for that) , but in a contributory one. That's just the way I am, for if I'm not making others happier I usually am not too happy myself. I've tried to make the best (or if not at least safest) of each situation as it arose, but that approach hasn't served me well. Therefore I'm going to remain an uninitiated solitary practitioner, albeit a well-read one.
I have a preference for strong women (and have asked to work under at least one) . My wife is both easily my equal and superior in several vital aspects (we're both Mensa members, where we met -- only her Chronic Lyme Disease holds her down) . We're not identical people, but we meld our different strengths into a happy marriage.
My greatest failings have come when I've been called on to be the stereo-typical "alpha male". I simply have never believed that forcing situations through into a "win-lose" was preferable to finding a "win-win" outcome. Developing a bipolar condition at age 37 certainly didn't help (the result of overwork and an undesired divorce) -- although under control 20 years later, the shadows of a decade of misery still haunt me. (For the record, one of my brothers had an identical breakdown in late 2007, which dragged me into quite a different morass.)
I've long had a saying (based on a Shakespeare quote that I've since learned is renowned here) : "A man who will lie to others, will lie to himself as well." However, the most important verse to me is "With our brothers, we will share" from the song "One Tin Soldier". Finally, there's a quote from Cantrell (see below) -- "Witches harm none, not because they fear the consequences of the Threefold Law, but because all is sacred."
My favorite song is "Time Will Tell" from (appropriately) "Wizards" -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwlgNT-vDEA (note that the MP3 file has a far better quality of sound than the YouTube video) . I've also watched other videos, and one I've long admired still strikes a chord -- "The Impossible Dream" ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LgzXwpePTTU ) .
Not being in a coven, I've had to "feel my way forward" in a non-traditional learning path. Basically, I skimmed a number of books, found some very good introductory books and read them, and added in some very good intermediate or advanced books. From these last books I am learning the kinds of things that a novice should concentrate on learning and why (tree lore, for example) . I've done little actual practicing to date (visualization is going to be tough for me) , but now that I much-better know what to practice and why I hope to start true novice-level studies.
*** Ironically, despite all of my reading, I currently refuse to use magick beyond the reading of a Tarot or, on very rare occasions, the use of a pre-made protection candle. That's because I appreciate the power of magick so greatly that I won't use it without both adequate training and safeguards (remember my military and nuclear engineering backgrounds) . This hesitation has been going on for over three years now, but I see no alternative. In any event, I have other capabilities I can employ in the interim. ***
The books (of our now-167 Wicca/paganism books and many associated ones) and albums I've found most useful so far are listed below (the ones I've recently read thoroughly have dates beside them, for my use) . However, in the end the Goddess is right -- if that which you seek you find not within you.....
-- Vivianne Crowley's "Principles of Wicca" (1997) (read In August 2015)
---- (This book is far superior to any other I've read, as an Introduction)
-- Raven Grimassi's "Spirit of the Witch" (2003) (read in April 2014)
---- (my 1st Must-Read book for newbies)
---- (Chapter 8 is an in-depth explanation of Magick's workings)
-- McCoy's "Inside a Witches' Coven" (1997) (read in March 2014)
---- (my 2nd Must-Read book for newbies)
-- Orion Foxwood's "The Flame in the Cauldron" (2015) (read in June/July 2015)
---- (*** You very likely will read this book if you are a serious newbie ***)
-- Silver RavenWolf's "To Light a Sacred Flame" (1999) (read in July 2014)
---- (Note: The first chapter contains "The Ordains")
-- Starhawk's "The Spiral Dance" (1979/1989/1999) (re-read in July 2013 and Sept./Oct. 2014)
---- (This is the classic "Wicca Primer" book, and should be read by everyone before they become a dedicant.)
-- Lady Maeve Rhea's "Summoning Forth Wiccan Gods and Goddesses" (1999) (read in December, 2014)
-- Adler's "Drawing Down the Moon" (1979/1986) (finished reading in February 2015)
-- Penczak's "The Inner Temple of Witchcraft" (2002) (read in May 2014)
---- (a first-year book for Solitary Practitioners)
-- Murphy-Hiscock's "Solitary Wicca For Life" (2005) (re-read in August 2013)
-- Cabot's "Power of the Witch: The Earth, the Moon, and the Magical Path to Enlightenment" (1989) (read in December 2013)
-- Starhawk & Valentine's "The Twelve Wild Swans" (2000)
---- (re-read all of The Elements and The Inner Path sections in February 2014)
-- Holland's "Wicca Handbook"
---- ("The Eight Ways to Raise Power" are on page 59)
---- (a simple symbology of numbers is at the end)
-- Holland's "The Spellcaster's Reference"
-- Raven Grimassi's "The Wiccan Mysteries: Ancient Origins & Teachings" (re-read in August 2013)
---- (This has the "traditional Wiccan alphabet" in Appendix 3)
---- (Note: Chapter 16 has ten questions which require going back over the previous chapters)
-- Cunningham's "Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner" (1988)
-- Rabinovitch's "An' Ye Harm None: Magical Morality And Modern Ethics" (2004) (read in November 2014)
---- ("To cast a spell is to project energy through a symbol")
-- Cantrell's "Wiccan Beliefs & Practices" (2001)
-- Lord Foxglove's "Advancing the Witches' Craft" (2005) (read in February 2015)
-- Zukav's "The Seat of the Soul" (1989) (read in November/December 2013)
-- "Warnings & Cautions For The New Wiccan or Witch"
---- Use magic "only in direst need, and then must the cause be just"
-- Covenant of the Goddess
----"super-organization" and credentials-clearing organization
-- "The Cauldron" on-line radio station
--The "classic" 161 Laws
-- Howard's "Modern Wicca: A History From Gerald Gardner to the Present" (2010) (read in May/June 2015)
---- (Accurate, detailed, and raw)
-- Clifton's "Her Hidden Children: The Rise of Wicca And Paganism in America " (2006) (read in June/July 2015)
-- "Gardnerian Book of Shadows (Forgotten Books) " (originally published in 1950) (read in July 2015)
---- My "bedroom-level" BDSM and other experiences would have fit nicely into BTW
-- Telesco's "Advanced Wicca" (2000) (read In August/Sept. 2015)
-- Draco's "Traditional Witchcraft and the Path to the Mysteries" (2015) (read in August 2015)
--- (The initial chapters resonate very strongly with me.)
--- "... and what appears as inspiration to one person, will be completely incomprehensible to another."
-- McCoy's "Advanced Witchcraft" (2004) (read in March/April 2014)
---- (initially somewhat painful, in that I could have written over half of Chapter 1)
-- Grey Cat's "Deepening Witchcraft: Advancing Skills & Knowledge" (2002) (read in April/May 2015)
---- (a Wicca leadership book)
-- Morgan-Douglas's "Wicca 333" (2003) and "Wicca 334" (2007) (read in April/May 2015)
-- Rain Dove's "The Tangled Web of Wicca: Through the Eye of a Traditional Wiccan Witch" (2014) (read in January 2015)
---- (Coven leaders absolutely should read pages 260-261 near the end of Chapter 8)
-- Leland's "Aradia: Gospel of the Witches" (1899) (read 13 of 15 chapters + part of Appendix)
---- (Had only a few insights.)
-- "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Tarot" (read in March 2014)
-- Pollack's "Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom: A Book of Tarot" (1980) (read in June 2014)
-- A Very British Witchcraft (Full) : Documentary on Gerald Gardner
-- Legend of the Witches Documentary 1969
----- This video is about witchcraft, but not about Wicca
-- "Shamanic Journey Solo and Double Drumming" (an album for journeying)
-- "Celtic Trance" (an album for special energy-raising)
-- "Two Worlds One" (Lisa Lynne -- I have 10 of her albums -- http://www.LisaLynne.com )
-- St. Clair's "Sign of the Labrys" (1963) (read in June 2015)
-- Heinlein's "Stranger in a Strange Land" (1961) (read in August/Sept. 2015) )
---- (Originally read in the late 1960's)
BASICALLY SECULAR BOOKS:
-- diZerega's "Fault Lines: The Sixties, the Culture War, and the Return of the Divine Feminine" (2013) (read in April 2014)
---- (a Must-Read book for coven leaders)
-- Campbell's "The Power of Myth" (1988) (read in November 2013)
-- Collins/Raeburn -- "Building a Magickal Relationship: The Five Points of Love" (2002) (read in January/February 2014)
-- Maitland's "From the Forest: a Search for the Hidden Roots of our Fairy Tales" (2012) (read in April 2014)
-- Reis's "Spellbound: Woman and Witchcraft in America" (1998) (read in December 2014)
---- (The last chapter, Chapter 12, should be read first)
NOW READING -- Vivianne Crowley's "Wicca: A Comprehensive Guide to the Old Religion in the Modern World" (1989/1996/2003) (read Intro and 8 of 14 chapters)
---- This is "Wicca 101 / 102 / 103"
NEXT IN LINE -- Wildman's "Wiccan Meditations" (2002) (read Intro and 1 of 6 chapters)
PAUSED -- Silver RavenWolf's "A Witch's Notebook" (2005) (read Intro and 1 of 5 chapters)
PAUSED -- Silver RavenWolf's "A Witch's Notebook" (2005) (read Intro and 1 of 5 chapters)
PAUSED -- Farrell's "Magical Imagination: The Keys to Magic" (2013) (read Intro)
PAUSED --- Silver Ravenwolf's "To Ride A Silver Broomstick: New Generation Witchcraft" (2002) (read 1 of 23 chapters)
----- (I intend to practice this book)
PAUSED -- Penczak's "The Outer Temple of Witchcraft" (read 16 of 17 total chapters)
ORDERED -- Higginbotham's "Paganism: An Introduction to Earth- Centered Religions" (2002)
--- "Religion is for people afraid of going to hell -- Spirituality is for those who have already been there." ---
--- "Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle." ---
--- "If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together." (But if you have to march through Hell, follow a soldier.) ---
--- "Never look down on someone unless it is to help them up." ---
--- "A point of view can be a dangerous luxury when substituted for insight and understanding." ---
--- Only trust someone who can see these 3 things in you:
----- the sorrow behind your smile,
----- the love behind your anger,
----- & the reason behind your silence. -----
In memory of the 1 in every 8:
"Mental Illness in the Pagan Community"
"Summing up suicide data in bipolar disorder"
You do a "Dark Night Of The Soul" -- my own "Dark Night" lasted just over a decade.
--- An old man wandering around the [ancient Greek] Olympic Games looking for a seat was jeered at by the crowd until he reached the seats of the Spartans, whereupon every Spartan younger than him, and some that were older, stood up and offered him their seat. The crowd applauded and the old man turned to them with a sigh, saying "All Greeks know what is right, but only the Spartans do it." ---
--- (From Wikipedia) -- "The LIM-49A Spartan was a United States Army anti-ballistic missile, designed to intercept attacking nuclear warheads from intercontinental ballistic missiles at long range and while still outside the atmosphere. ..... It was part of the Safeguard Program." ---
If you never understand why I put the above two paragraphs in, you will equally never have the faintest chance of understanding me.
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