2021 Fairy Witch Training

Fairy Witch Training

Fairy Witch Training aka Third Road Faerie Shamanism Training

FaerieRlmWetWPnk99 Third Road is the tradition I teach.

Classes are teleseminars—group meetings by phone. Just dial the phone to participate.

Training consists of four courses I’ve taught for almost two decades because they’re the core entry-level witch training and prerequisites for Third Road advanced shamanic training.

* Witchcraft, straight up * accessible to beginners * spells to manifest worldly goals * personal growth * increased intuition * power to serve your tribe *

Each course provides:
* down-to-earth applications of Pagan mysticism. This is mysticism grounded in practical spell-crafting—witch spirituality integrated with common sense; the combination improves your whole life
* experiences of the Goddess and God as living entities Who protect, bless, and utterly adore you
* the ancient Faery Faith’s transformative beauty
* empowerment to be of maximum service to your tribe
* solid magical techniques
* spells for worldly goals
* rites for personal growth
* increased intuition
* core Third Road teachings
* ancient Goddess spirituality: the Great Mother Goddess embraces men, male Gods, gender-bending, and beyond. She embraces all people. You won’t find a more motley crew than in my events. Truly inclusive.

Each person has unique magical and mundane talents. This training nurtures these passions: your particular shamanic and worldly skill sets are invoked and fostered. You attain rich selfhood and can serve tribe by expressing yourself.

Lessons don’t delineate a path we’re all supposed to walk (ick!) but instead support your particular path—your life, your needs, your spiritual and mundane journey.

Instead of a shamanic approach to which you’re expected to conform to be a “real” shaman (ick!), you’ll be in a shamanic journey designed to meet you exactly as who, where, and how you are.

The four courses weave into a whole far greater than the sum of its parts.

A teacher in probably the world’s largest Pagan tradition studied with me. She later said, “I wish my tradition had material as advanced as Francesca’s.” She was referring to my entry-level classes. This is witchcraft, straight up, and accessible to beginners.

The training is multi-leveled, suitable to all levels, and provides access to power at whatever level your spirit, life, and magic require. Adepts experience sufficient depth and challenges, but beginners are not overwhelmed or left to fall behind.

Don’t spin your wheels. In our very first meeting, you enter a circle of power. Expect immense progress in a fraction of the time you’ve spent elsewhere on typical lessons.

No prerequisites required except for one course—The Be a Goddess Master Class. That class’s description (below) explains further.

This eight-month shamanic journey has four powerful aspects:

1) 27 lessons. We meet via teleseminars—group phone calls. To participate, just dial your phone.

We’ll work in old-style oral tradition, allowing immense headway quickly. Enrollment is limited to 16 people, so we can perform ceremonies that can only happen in a small group, and so each participant can receive individualized attention, should they want that support.

I commit to my students. A shamanic journey is personal. Traditional shamanic lessons include individualized attention, which tailors the training to you.

2) Direct spiritual transmissions occur each meeting, deepen the rituals, make them safer, and foster experiential understanding of the course material.

The transmissions also enliven your cells, so your magic wakes to its next level of power as do your mundane strengths.

There are other benefits; the transmissions’ energies adapt to your needs, blessing your internal and external life.

I cannot imagine oral tradition without direct spiritual transmissions. They seem part and parcel.

(I’m not explaining what spiritual transmissions are here because the important thing is the benefits they’ll give you during the training. But if you want a definition, you can read mine here. Be apprised that my definition is not typical: https://outlawbunny.com/2020/11/19/what-is-a-spiritual-transmission/.)

3) One-on-one support by phone. I’m available should you need to privately discuss anything, or if something comes up for you during a group meeting and would take too long to discuss during that meeting.

Take the entire training or participate in a single course. Each course stands on its own, a training unto itself.

Below are the four courses, in the order they’ll be held. Their descriptions are flawed but will work once you’ve read this caveat:

Descriptions divide Fairy magic into categories, which isn’t true of Fey magic as I know it. When I cast a spell to shift a part of myself or my life, the magic is nonetheless all-encompassing. Fae magic is the living, loving presence of the Faery Queen and King. During a Fairy ceremony, these Gods not only achieve my goal(s) for the ceremony but, in Their enthusiastic love for me, bless my whole person and enchant my entire life.

Thus, while each course focuses overtly on certain benefits or approaches, other benefits come too. Additional approaches come into play, perhaps subtly. This style is integrative.

A description of a course focuses on its overt aspects, though each course, to a significant extent, provides all benefits the other courses do.

Also note, near its top, this post lists benefits each one of these courses offers. I don’t repeat all that in a course description.

Course One: Faerie Shamanism—an Ecstatic Path

Course One: Faerie Shamanism—an Ecstatic Path

Curriculum focuses on ecstatic ritual, Faerie wisdoms, theoretical basics of Faerie Shamanism, and some of its more complex aspects.

Course material also helps you discover or deepen your Fey magic: Faerie Shamanism expresses itself differently in each practitioner. I help you build that personal expression, while I also offer techniques for your magical toolbox.

You are on a unique journey. The Faerie Shamanism class steadies your feet.

You also:
* learn training practices and moral stances that increase pleasure
* Gain the material satisfactions of an ecstatic practitioner, without being snared by addictions or illusions
* Embrace wholeness in all your many facets.

Course Two: Holy Sweaty Joy—Ecstatic Spirituality and Sacred Sexuality

Holy Sweaty Joy—Ecstatic Spirituality & Sacred Sexuality

Witches are considered unholy by religious bigots because our religion teaches us to take life by the horns and use revelry to reach our life’s goals—goals of bounty, beauty, self-fulfillment, joy, service to our community, and more.

Claim these old revelry magics of the Faerie ecstatic path. Learn fun rites that do the job when all else fails. This is ritual that transforms you and your life.

Delight in Faery Faith rituals and mysteries:
* Reach your life goals—and heal your spirit—through both magical and worldly celebration.
* Imbue daily activities with confidence, passion, and vigor.
* Move past inner blocks to your inherent, sacred sensuality.
* Be a sex God(dess)!
* Affirm your unique, bewitching sexuality.
* Own your true self, so your authenticity shapes decisions.
* Own your joy.

Course Three: Gentle Heart, Palm Up—Peacefully Conquering Challenges

Gentle Heart, Palm Up—Peacefully Conquering Challenges

Overcoming challenges, great or small, mundane or spiritual, is a traditional path to gaining shamanic power.

This course offers shamanic tools to triumph over problems, whether an “everyday dilemma” or traumatizing devastation. These same tools build the magical strengths to manifest whatever your heart desires in any area of your life. Since the process outlined in this paragraph is a traditional means of gaining shamanic power, this course provides an aspect of core shamanism (as do all four courses).

As always, lessons are not theoretical. This class provides the experience of gaining mystic power to conquer your immediate problems and how that creates the exact magical strengths, methods, and mental shifts needed to overcome all life’s difficulties and fulfill your life goals.

The last thing any of us need is a class that’s too hard. Like most of my classes, this witchcraft is gentle, peaceful, and potent.

Gentle rituals can be more effective than obviously strong rites. Sometimes, only gentleness draws forth our wildness and helps us live free.

You’ll learn a witchy fluidity that makes you unstoppable. I jokingly coined the terms Faerie Taoism and Fae Chi Gung to explain this course: we relaxedly flow with nature’s patterns, so nothing can stop us.

Gentle Heart, Palm Up training saves you mega-time: move through roadblocks quickly and serenely, instead of wandering stymied and anxious. Conquer problems peacefully.

This material helped heal me and my life from the trauma of becoming crippled overnight in 2001 and the crises—e.g., financial problems—that can domino from major illness. I was so depleted that, when channeling these lessons, I was too ill to type or even hand-write them. I dictated them to someone. Then, because of these lessons, I rose like the Phoenix. At age 70, I’m healthier than I was in 2001, my finances recovered, and my spirit is whole.

Course Four: The Be a Goddess Master Class

Course Four: The Be a Goddess Master Class

This Witch Training provides the following benefits. If you’ve already received them, they reach the next level:
* Your inner guide becomes stronger.
* Your connection to the Old Gods deepens so Their blessings in your life increase, and you can revel in the blissful joy of Their company.
* You acquire magical and mundane abilities to meet any challenge or opportunity.
* Profound soul-healing comes—sometimes so easily you don’t notice it till later.
* You Honor and draw on the Deity within.
* Serving all our relations in the way your heart wants becomes possible.
* Fey-touched joy that makes life worth living ignites.

The magic in my book, Be a Goddess, has unpublished, more advanced facets. They meet you as you are now, in whatever circumstances you’re in now, that you may live the way you truly want. I’ll teach you that material.

The tools you already have from one of the prerequisites will gain deeper layers of power, which you can apply to your current situations.

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Feeling powerless? This class will change that.

Already feel plenty of power? Rock on! And if you’re not achieving everything you want, this course is the next step.

You also learn new techniques: I’ll teach you new tools and how to apply tools from the books—for whatever you need: prosperity, creativity, or anything else.

Prerequisite for The Be a Goddess Master Class

Complete one of the following to take the Master Class:
* first 12 lessons in my book, Be a Goddess!
* first 8 lessons in my book, Goddess Initiation
* one entry-level class in Third Road’s Mystic Rose branch (which I taught face-to-face in San Francisco)

I scheduled The Be a Goddess Master Class as the last of the four classes, to give you time to fulfill one of the prerequisites if you haven’t already.

If you start soon, there’s time to do the first 12 lessons in my book Be a Goddess!.

Been a long time since you did one of the prerequisites? It doesn’t matter. Don’t think you have to start again. You’ve done the work.

Don’t feel like you did it well enough? Doesn’t matter. You did the lessons. Learning witchcraft is a process. Give yourself a chance to move ahead with it, toward your life goals. You can always return to earlier work later to do it “better.”

Schedule

The eight month training has 27 lessons, all on Sundays, 6:00 to 7:00 pm, EST, starting April 25.

Each course is seven weeks except The Be a Goddess Master Class is six.

Course One, Faerie Shamanism—an Ecstatic Path—runs April 25 through June 6. Reserve 6:00 to 7:00 pm, Sunday June 13, for a makeup class in the unlikely chance I’m unavailable for one of the planned sessions.

Course Two: Holy Sweaty Joy—Ecstatic Spirituality and Sacred Sexuality—runs June 27 through August 8. Reserve 6:00 to 7:00 pm, Sunday August 15 for a makeup class in the unlikely chance I can’t attend one of the planned sessions.

Course Three: Gentle Heart, Palm Up—Peacefully Conquering Challenges—is August 29 through October 10. Reserve 6:00 to 7:00 pm, Sunday October 17 for a makeup class in the unlikely chance I can’t attend one of the planned sessions.

Course Four: The Be a Goddess Master Class meets October 31 through December 12, skipping November 28 for Thanksgiving. Reserve 6:00 to 7:00 pm, Sunday December 19 for a makeup class in the unlikely chance I’m unavailable for one of the planned sessions.

There is a break after each course, so the schedule is not overwhelming. Plus chances are good we won’t need to use the make-up dates so will have them off too. We break on June 20, August 22, October 24, and November 28.

Enrollment

Full cost—for 27 classes, direct spiritual transmissions, handouts, and one-on-one private support should you desire—is $200 a month. Your carrier might charge you for the phone calls into the lessons.

If you’ve taken this training or one of its courses, repeat enrollment is half-price. Contact me, and I’ll invoice you through PayPal. To participate in a single course, contact me for invoice.

Enroll securely with PayPal. Use the Subscribe button below for automatic monthly payments of $200, for eight months.


Pls give me yr phone #



Upon receipt of payment, your place is reserved. You receive course details—e.g., the phone number to dial for the meetings—by email. For more information or to discuss scholarship, semi-scholarship, trade, or a payment plan other than the subscription option on this page, phone me. No refunds. However, you can cancel your subscription after the two payments for the specific course you’re in.

There Is Only Now

If you want witch training with me, now is the time. It’s been between six and three years since I’ve taught some of these courses.

There is only now, and sky’s the limit. We’ll immediately dive into ultra-focused lessons between the worlds.

Please note: along with the four above prerequisites, participating in advanced training requires two electives. You might have already taken one without even knowing it. Here are some recent events that qualify (and there are plenty of other qualifying electives to choose from):
* One of the 2020 or 2021 daylong retreats
* Dragon Magic
* Magic For Business Success
* Laughing Vulva, Goddess Womb
* the breath healing course and the sound healing course combined qualify as one elective
* ditto combining both three-week Trauma, Shamanism, and Victory groups

Advanced training will start 2022 (if enough folks are interested) and not until well into the year, so there’s time for you to take electives. Sometimes, we can delay an elective if you haven’t done two before the advanced training begins.

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You can’t find these lessons elsewhere. I’m utterly grateful the Goddess whispered them to me because they’ve saved me over and over. More about my curriculum-creation process:

* When teaching orally, I’m ensconced within a family oral tradition I entered in infancy, learning magic con leche. I receive experiential wisdom-lessons not taught elsewhere.
* Raised in a European-based shamanic family tradition that includes both Italian sorcery and Celtic shamanism, I teach a multicultural Faerie shamanism.
* I thoughtfully, joyfully, carefully channel curriculums, constructing lessons over time. This tunes us into enormous, subtle powers. You won’t pay for a jumble of undigested white-bread ideas that an unprepared teacher declared, “Voila, genuine Pagan stuff!” 🙂 Instead, I committed my life to developing material for you.
* I received full-time, longterm shamanic training. It was not academic but an experiential training of skill sets. That focused study allowed me into the heart of reality, in trance 24-7, channeling lessons for seven years.
* For decades since, my Gods asked me to trance only part of the day, to ground me. Feet more on the ground than ever, I continue to explore our magical yet earthy cosmos and channel new earth-based mysticism material, because resting on my laurels would be no fun. I like fun.

Fairy witch, Francesca De Grandis, is the bestselling author of Be a Goddess! and Goddess Initiation. A teacher, guide, and healer, she offers long distance classes, rituals, private counseling, and healings. Her Goddess spirituality embraces practical magic spells. Raised in a European-based shamanic family tradition with both La Vecchia Religione and Celtic shamanism in its lineage, Francesca’s witchcraft is a multicultural Faerie shamanism. La Vecchia Religione translates the Old Religion and refers to the practices of an Italian witch, also known as a Strega.

A Garden Is Magic

Photo of Jenelle’s Garden. In the garden is a statue of Quan Yen and a street sign that reads “Queen Street.”

Months back, I gathered with some of my sister Third Road initiates, by phone, to do a magical spell. (Third Road is a tradition of Fairy magic that I channeled and continue to channel.) During our ceremony, Jenelle Leigh Campion read a poem she’d written about her garden, pictured above. Her artistry wowed me once again.

The poem also portrays themes dear to me:

* Inner wholeness created through connection with the larger whole and through appreciation of every part of the whole. This sensibility is central to my journey as a spiritual seeker and Fairy shaman.

* The green world as an enchanted realm in which each plant is a living spirit. Plants are my friends who give me great joy with their beauty and wisdom, while they help me with my witch spirituality.

Here’s Jenelle’s poem, prefaced by her introduction:

This piece was inspired by a writing prompt that asked me to write from a “family consciousness” perspective and use the “royal we” pronoun to describe a family having a group experience. Instantly, my garden called out as the collective voice that would like to be channeled into my writing and this was the result.  

Garden

We are the garden.
We are the ones who grow.

In the misty, humid dawn we drink in dew
collectively unfurling
from the evening’s contraction.

Hibiscus sees the light first,
standing almost as tall as the wall behind us.
Only a few shy flowers appearing amidst the bush.

Our bright pink petals of Lady Magenta
highlight brightly
in the sea of our green.

The tender arrives to inspect
our changes and newness
and inspire the cherished waters to flow,
refreshing and preparing us
for the work of the day.
Growth.
New achievements unlocked.
New blossoms to bloom.

Magnolia is always in the light drawing nutrients
down from the heavens and
up from below the foundation.
She hugs the earth and sky.

The cluster of Bamboo and Rosemary
are the grandmothers in the garden.
Kwan Yin stands in their heart,
reminding compassion.
These plant darlings shimmer in green
and laugh into the wind as they bend.  

The potted plant party corner thinks
it’s having an exclusive event.
And they are right.
The late day sun is their jam!
Drinking in and
reveling in brightness
their medicine becomes
plump and potent.  

We all become more
plump and potent,
happy in our brightness
or shade.

Easter Lillies, Holly, and Queen of the Nile
liking their cool calm zones
to chill and become beautiful.

We are the garden.
We are the ones who grow.

We are one circle,
within a larger neighborhood circle,
and a city circle,
state,
country,
continent,
world.

One global plant family
everyday turning up
to bring delight
to our courtyard.

Jenelle, who also paints amazing pictures, says, ”It is my joy to send art out into the world because it nurtures happiness, creates feelings of abundance in our lives, and shares the spiritual support and magical empowerment that the sweetness of beauty can provide.

I’m blessed by my students because, like Jenelle, they are amazing companions for me along the Faerie path. Join us. My newsletter tells you about upcoming classes and other events. Click the banner below to subscribe.

Click this banner to subscribe to my Faerie newsletter. Upcoming events, freebies, and stardust.

The Virtual Pagan Monastery 2020

Walk between the stars with me.
We’ll find a moment’s peace,
our spirits held secure by Gods
Who also cradle everything.
Then we’ll return to earth,
our hearts and strength renewed.
We’ll have the means to serve life well
and stay the course that day.
And when earth’s weight bears down on us,
we’ll walk the stars again.
And, once more, gain the help we need
to meet the hours ahead.

I hope my above poem conveys, to at least some small degree, the power gained when visiting the Virtual Pagan Monastery.

You might think of it as a Goddess temple, Druid grove, Faerie circle, Pagan monastery, or retreat to an otherworldly haven. It has been sanctuary, even in the hardest times.

If you’re unfamiliar with this long-distance experience:

Twice a week, I lead fifteen-minute-long ceremonies via group telephone calls. This continues for six weeks—ongoing spiritual sustenance that fits into a busy day.

During every ritual, I also give a direct spiritual transmission. You receive profound care, so are better able to meet the hours ahead and live fully.

To define my particular transmissions: I was born generating a beneficial field of energy. During our meetings, it adapts to your needs, e.g., personal growth, a soul healing, physical health, joy for your wild heart, safety on the mundane and etheric planes, the spiritual strength to get back up after life’s knocked you down. The transmissions do not focus on one benefit only, but bless you as a whole being. They also add luck to anything you do to improve your life.

The Virtual Pagan Monastery group meets twice a week for six weeks, starting May 12:

We’ll meet from 3:15 to 3:30, EST, on Tuesdays and Fridays.

To participate, simply dial the phone.

You’ll need about three minutes after each session to do a special grounding, which I’ll teach.

Reserve Tuesday June 23 and Friday June 26, the usual time, for makeup sessions in case I’m unavailable for planned sessions.

Total enrollment fee: $250. Your carrier might charge you for the call.

Click the Pay Now button to enroll securely through PayPal:





Limited enrollment. Upon receipt of payment, your seat is reserved. You receive event phone number, etc., by email. Refunds unavailable. Call me for more info or to discuss scholarship, trade, or payment plan.

Explaining this event is hard because many people think Paganism lacks inward, contemplative aspects or inner adventures. For my outward efforts to be effective, powerful, and loving, I need the inner life.

My inner life is also a precious, exciting joy that fuels the passion for life in my more outward experiences. Please give yourself contemplative times and inner adventures. Visit the Virtual Pagan Monastery.

We all make choices about what’s best for us and what helps us best serve others. For most folks, that excludes a huge amount of time in ritual. (Actually, I believe anything we do is ritual, but I need to define ritual in the more usual way here.) My choice was an ongoing enormous amount of rituals, which required a solitary life, since I couldn’t found an in-person Pagan monastery. A description of my day is relevant to this event:

I rarely see anyone in person. My contacts are mostly between the stars, doing ritual with folks. Otherworldly time spent with students and other wonderful friends is an enormous nourishment and joy that feeds me like few things ever could, given my particular personality and spirit.

So much time alone allows me to, among other things, do devotional practices and channel shamanic rites I lead.

New terms are needed to depict spirituality that is liberating instead of oppressive. For example, devotional or contemplative activities needn’t be dour, overly formal, or anti-sex. So I made up the term ecstatic contemplative to describe folks like me. I also coined Pagan monasticism to hopefully expand the sense of the possible lifestyles.

Since few people have the time that I do for ritual, I had the idea of a virtual Pagan monastery providing mini-retreats for you. You needn’t be a monastic, or want to become one. Take advantage of my decades as a Pagan monastic; I’ll draw on my daily experiences to create fifteen-minute rituals for you.

Many folks have “inner monasteries”—places they visit and practices they have—to nourish themselves, ensure they cleave to their paths and their truths, and engage with the Divine. But a lot of these individuals tell me lack of time keeps them from going inward often enough, let alone coming up with a ritual for themselves on top of that. Each Pagan Monastery meeting has a ritual all prepared for you, I lead you through it, and the weekly schedule is easy.

You needn’t go it alone.

I usually only “open” the virtual monastery for visits in the early months of the year, but I feel it’s important right now. For one thing, some of us need our spirituality more than ever, and need empowerment more than ever, but it can be hard—if not near impossible—to spiritually tend to oneself at the present time, and the virtual monastery is a quick way to do it.

In ancient shamanic culture, sacred group meetings were part of the everyday, even during major upheaval. Tribes were normally busy taking care of business—hunting, weaving, etc., and all the more so during crisis. They didn’t try to shoulder on without group rites. The ones I’ll lead in the Virtual Pagan Monastery are heavy duty ceremonies.

This magic is so strong that fifteen minutes of it improves your life. For example, some of these brief rituals can, all on their own, land you smack dab in the reality of you, your truest self with its wisdom, balance, and magic. When you don’t arrive in the center of your personal essence during one of those rites, you likely move radically in that direction, so you stop holding your breath, exhale with enormous relief, and feel longed for peace. Plus the rites we’ll do add up to the substantial claiming or reclaiming of selfhood.

You emerge from each brief session prepared to make life more serene, fulfilling, and abundant. You’re more able to do whatever’s needed to achieve your goals and stay centered while you’re at it. This is support to be powerful.

Feedback: “Someone might think, ‘I won’t get much from 15 minutes.’ … But Francesca’s Pagan Monastery showed me how deep a 15-minute ritual can go. She knows how to do this.”

If you’re skeptical about these visits accomplishing what I say they can, and you suspect 15 minutes isn’t worth your time or money, you’re smart. The world is full of “spiritual” con-artists.

My claims aren’t hype. Few people can do what I do. If one of my services or books accomplished something nothing else had for you, that starts to give you the real picture.

Add that I trained from childhood as a shaman. Then, for decades, I’ve dedicated my life to developing shamanic skills and innovative ritual methodologies and to becoming a guide capable of addressing a lot of different life arenas.

So when I announce I excel at facilitating shamanic experiences and making fifteen minutes relevant and extraordinary, I’m talking truth. But don’t take my word. Trust what your gut tells you. It might say that, in fact, my methods have led to miracles.

All the rituals I perform combine to create my wholeness. Nevertheless, whatever I did ritually yesterday doesn’t fully cover what I require today. Over and over, I need to regain emotional balance, center into the reality of a caring Goddess, and experience spiritual renewal. This is even more true for me right now.

Consistent ritual is even more vital during difficult times. During crisis, enrolling in this event might be one of the most important steps you take. For one thing, it’ll help bring the most powerful you forward to face challenges and accomplish exactly what’s needed.

If you need to miss some sessions, enroll. Perfect attendance isn’t part of real life.





Please visit me in the Virtual Pagan Monastery. It is a beautiful place.


Pagan Trends, Absolute Truths, and Trusting Yourself

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Trends change rapidly in the Pagan community. We often see “an indisputable fact” ricochet to its exact opposite within years. These “truths” cause immense discord. How can we navigate these treacherous waters without disavowing our own personal wisdoms? We all find our way of doing it. If I share mine, perhaps that might make finding yours easier.

So, a story:

Way back when, most American Pagans insisted traditional craft was nonexistent. People became downright nasty in their disdainful insistence there is no traditional witchcraft. Nowadays, many Pagans discuss traditional craft, what it is, how to do it, and where to learn it.

The party line back then was that anyone who claimed a traditional craft lineage was a liar. The person in question might be completely discredited.

To the best of my understanding back then: a big name Pagan dishonestly validated the material he taught by saying he’d gotten it from his grandmother, a traditional witch, but he lied about her being a witch.

People just decided, if he was lying, everybody else must be. Good grief!

Ok, let me continue this tale by adding how it affected me personally:

I was raised in a longstanding European-based shamanic family tradition. This was hardly a secret to some of the Pagans I knew. But, in case it’s useful context for the rest of my story, I didn’t have a best selling book yet, so the number of people who knew anything about me were far far fewer than later became the case.

You can imagine, amidst all the vitriol and possibility of being totally discredited, I was thoughtful about when to mention my traditional witchery to a Pagan. I wanted to avoid the near certainty of being branded liar in the larger Pagan community.

Close friends knew my family background, and I’d tell others when it was important. In fact, when the bestseller did come out, its back cover mentioned my mom was a Sicilian witch. To do otherwise would’ve insulted her and all my witch ancestors. But I also used discretion. For example, skirting my family history in casual conversation.

What I’m saying is: navigating the dangerous seas of trending “absolute truths” was challenging—for one thing, it can be frightening to buck popular opinion—but I found ways to maintain integrity while also guarding my emotional equilibrium. We can keeps our spirits whole. Here are two navigation skills that worked for me:

One is knowing it is vital to trust your own beliefs and respect the value of your own experiences, despite people who try to hit you over the head with trends to make you feel ignorant or otherwise not as “authentic” a Pagan as they are.

The second navigation skill is discretion. I want to practice discretion about whether to say something.

Nowadays, most people use the word discretion to mean holding silence. But discretion can also mean wisely considering the best course of action, judging each situation according to its specific circumstances. I’m using the latter definition here. So, in terms of our topic, discretion might lead one to speak—to good purpose—or to remain appropriately mum.

It’s vital to speak up for your beliefs when there’s good reason. Losing self-respect does not constitute successful navigation of treacherous waters.

As to choosing silence, let’s start with the example of avoiding arguments with people who aren’t going to listen.

Back when mentioning a family tradition might completely discredit you with many people, I was at a dinner party where someone who was constantly on power trips declared, in a high and mighty tone, that as a scholar she was devoted to naysaying the possibility of a family tradition. She did not know I came from one. I didn’t tell her. (A friend in the know did surreptitiously wink at me. That was lovely support.)

Most people who jump on trending absolutes will neither listen nor engage in a courteous, informative exchange of ideas, because they’ll rush to prop up wobbly egos with pseudo-knowledge. They’ll just try to browbeat you into feeling you’re wrong, though that may not be their conscious motivation, bless them. Wasting your time in a verbal entanglement amounts to letting someone’s pseudo-truth get the better of you. Your time is sacred.

Yet if she had been honestly interested, and merely misinformed about whether traditional witchcraft existed, I might have discussed my family.

Important aside: Though I avoided an argument at the dinner party, I admit my record’s not perfect with that sort of thing. Luckily, seeing how it depleted and upset me helps me not repeat the mistake any more. A hard won lesson, but one that frees me from other people’s opinionated insistences.

This blog is long but the following feels vital. Another example of discretion and silence:

(Please note, I’m going to use traditional witchery as an example in this essay again. That’s a coincidence. The examples have no relation. So don’t think you need to connect the dots between examples.)

More than once, a segment of the Pagan community inflated their position to one of dominance by stating “superior” pseudo-truths, and I could have deflated their posturing by disclosing a bit of traditional witchcraft’s sacred lore.

I stayed mute about the lore. I was blessed to have received it, so would not disclose it merely to prove a point to people who would not have viewed it as precious information but who would have pawed it.

They’d have greedily grabbed at it as mere words—exploited it as verbal fodder they could parrot to appear in-the-know and first string. (Heh, at least I got to feel smug about keeping my mouth shut. … Ok, I admit, feeling superior wasn’t good for me.)

Had I said anything authentic, nobody would have cared. The agenda on their table was to show how important and “wise” you were. That was not an agenda I wanted to be part of, even though telling them traditional material would’ve moved me to the top of the food chain. But climbing up would have actually, as the old expression goes, dragged me down to their level. … Goddess, I was tempted anyway. … Maybe smugness about my silence was my solace.

My story about being silent is relevant to discretion stopping fake truths from derailing your personal hard-won beliefs, in the following ways:

Opening my mouth would have been my ego reacting to theirs, as well as meeting their attempt to move up in a hierarchy with a similar attempt of my own. Both of those would have betrayed my personal belief in not living in ego or falling prey to power struggles.

It also would have wasted my time and life force, instead of me going about my merry business, living happily according to my own ecstatic truths.

Responding to someone’s power play with one of our own can be incredibly tempting, but also incredibly damaging to ourselves. Ego-driven magic and power-hungry grabs put someone on the slippery slope of chasing chimera more and more, less and less living joyously in the beautiful world the Goddess created for us.

Had I shared the lore for the purposes of my ego, I also would have debased that material. Reduced to mere words in order to feed my ego, the power of that beautiful material would’ve been lost to me, crumbled into dust like Faerie gold.

There’s one more way someone’s pseudo-truth would’ve gotten the better of me if I’d blabbed sacred knowledge for the sake of ego and dominance. I would’ve betrayed my following personal truth: I hold my religion sacred by only using it for honorable purposes. To do otherwise, I would truly have failed navigating the rocky seas of community-enforced pseudo-truths and sunk to the depths.

When magic and spirituality become tools to create unhealthy hierarchy—aka dominate others—they go sour. So does the spirit of the practitioner in question. His soiled shamanic path is handed down to his students, its very essence feeding their worst aspects, perhaps subtly but thoroughly. A nightmare for the community.

When magic and spirituality remain tools to serve, in respect for our differences, those tools become more powerful and capable. So do our spirits. Free of contentious opinions and excess verbiage, our innate magic fills each day, often silently. We become blessed by—and a blessing for—community.

I hope some of my above opinions are useful to you.

I teach traditional craft. My Gods bless me with wise students: They are wise in so many ways, but one is that we all respect each other. Honoring our differing views as assets allows each of us to uniquely contribute to the group’s magic and well-being. This in turn allows each of us to benefit from all the participants’ strengths.

If you’d like to join us, I teach mostly via group phone calls—aka teleseminars. Subscribe to my free newsletter, which tells you about upcoming classes: https://outlawbunny.com/newsletter/

Have a magical day.

Traditional Witchcraft, Spirituality, and Ethics

FDG2016TphatCurrently, it is a prevalent opinion among Pagans that traditional witchcraft was strictly magical, lacking theology or moral aspects. While I can respect that theory, it is not congruent with my own experiences. I suspect whether traditional witchery had sacred or ethical aspects varied by locale or by family tradition.

I never argue with anybody’s experience, only their theory. Theory is ever-changing. I’d never want to invalidate anyone’s experience, including my own. I’ll share mine below.

My experiences lead to conclusions that differ from the aforementioned current popular Pagan position. I hope to add to the Pagan dialogue on the topic, and provide support for those who, like me, have an unpopular point of view.

Growing up in a family tradition, I learned magic and a mystical worldview con leche. Therefore magic and mysticism were a given, as much a part of life as the air I was breathing. In the process, a religious and ethical worldview was deeply ingrained in my cells.

Note I say “my cells,” not “my brain.” It took my entire childhood and adolescence to imbibe the tradition’s basics, because cellular lessons take time.

The understandings of the tradition were so deeply imbedded in our home life that much of the family tradition was taken for granted, not out and out spoken, but more implied and lived. This includes the theist or moral aspects.

In fact, calling it an understanding in the above paragraph is somewhat of a misnomer. It is not so much an understanding as a way of being.

In any case, a lifestyle with many of its important aspects being subtle or unspoken seems an earmark of many traditional witches I have met.

When I got older, I saw that this subtlety sometimes causes people who were viewing the family tradition from the outside to not see the tradition’s deep religious and ethical roots, only the more overt—and perhaps less core—trappings. When I participated in family traditions in Europe, I usually found deep religious and ethical roots in them.

Observers are not engaged in the family culture. They are standing outside it, watching. Only by being part of a shamanic family culture over a long period of time can one can really understand the culture. The notion that to watch something is to fully understand it is a fairly current concept of scholarship. As I said above, learning the traditional witchcraft of my family required an experiential, long term lesson.

It has become almost de rigeur to insist traditional craft never had sacred or principled aspects. This makes it important to me to write this post about my family tradition, because I feel I’m speaking up for my Gods, for my witch ancestors, and for others who feel as I do.

I do not like it when a theory ceases to be a theory and becomes a mandated belief—in other words, when someone is mouthing somebody else’s words to, consciously or not, invalidate other seekers. Unfortunately, the concept that traditional witchcraft had neither ethical nor theological base has become yet another Pagan rote declaration, usually said—or written—in an intimidating tone of I-know-better-than-you-so-whatever-you-think-is-stupid.

I can admire people who authentically believe other than I do. An informed and friendly exchange of ideas about traditional craft, spirituality, and ethics could be a lovely thing. Healthy debate is a wonderfully educational process for everyone involved. A supportive, respectful, and thoughtful exchange of ideas can do wonders.

But debate is not the same as trying to legitimize and define one’s path by invalidating someone else’s. That hurtfully invalidates a lot of newbies who already feel insecure about their belief system. This can crush a newcomer’s spirit.

Coming to our community, hoping to finally find fellowship, but instead encountering someone just as invalidating as mainstream society, can be doubly heartbreaking, because they thought they had finally entered a safe space. So they often never participate in our community again, and end up without support in their Pagan explorations.

People who need to squash others in order to validate their own power have less power than they think, and more mere bluster than they realize.

Thus, I felt impelled to write this post to support invalidated Pagans.

A last thought on traditional witches and ethics: perhaps in some cases, a lack of morality had less to do with any tradition and more to do with human nature. Some people just take anything, even that which is moral and sacred to begin with, strip it of those roots, and use it for their own selfish—or even evil—goals.

I hope this post is a useful contribution to Pagan dialogue about traditional craft.

If you want experiential lessons in traditional craft, I teach The Third Road, a tradition I channel, informed by the magic of my ancestors and my mom. (Channeling teachings is part of traditional craft.) I teach mostly via group phone calls—aka teleseminars. Here’s the link to subscribe to my newsletter, which tells you about upcoming classes: https://outlawbunny.com/newsletter/

Bless you.

DNA and Ancestral Ritual

DNA Science and magic meet. I won’t choose between mysticism and science. They can feed each other.

My ancestors are spiritually important to me. So I’m combining science and spirit in a deeply personal way: I ordered an AncestryDNA test kit.

A mystic, I travel through the blood in my veins, back through time, to discover the ancient ways my family once practiced. Today, the logical rational side of me does the same by spitting into a vial. This test tube becomes a chalice that arrived by mail, enclosed in plastic. Two supposedly disparate halves of me come together to feed my spirit.

I mailed my saliva, part of my sacred body, to scientists, who will analyze it to reveal my ethnic background. They’ll go back through many generations, the same way my meditations have. Their work will expand my otherworldly travels.

The lab analysis will determine where my ancestors hail from, based on a science my layperson’s mind can’t understand, no matter how much experts explain it.

Many scientists would be equally puzzled by my ability to uncover historical information by meditating on my blood. I have my expertise, they have theirs. I get to draw on both.

A relationship with my ancestors, in ritual and daily life, is pivotal to me. They lovingly support me. And I tend them. Trance journeys give me a strong intuitive sense of my ancestors. The DNA results can help me know whether my intuitions are correct.

It would be fine to trust my intuition without the DNA results. (Check out my blog about that: Mysticism and Non-Academic Scholarship.) But corroboration is useful.

Science can support my spirituality in other ways, too.

For one, I come from a European shamanic family tradition. Some of my family history has been lost. I’m hoping DNA will fill in gaps.

For example, I might see how major societal events impacted my family’s past generations to shape the family’s spirituality. That familial story could provide context to better understand my own path.

Luck allowed me to gather a staggering amount of anecdotal evidence about my ancestors. Information from relatives, and from strangers I don’t know but who have my last name, and from other sources, provided enormously convincing material, when looked at as a whole. I believe anecdotal evidence is part of folk culture and one source of the old wise ways. This fecund anecdotal evidence can be augmented with DNA science.

For example, the DNA test might help me gather more anecdotal evidence, if it leads to relatives I hadn’t learned about previously. They might know family history I don’t.

DNA results could also be a jumping off point for more ancestral rituals. I love the wisdom of ancient cultures, and appreciate reenactment whether based in textbooks’ history or intuited history. I revere native and ancestral spiritual practices. These leanings feed my desire for DNA info about my ancestral roots.

I can best explain another reason for wanting a test by telling you a personal story.

A friend of mine was part of a DNA study. Before continuing the story, let me be clear: I’m not part of any study. My test kit is from AncestryDNA. They’re not experimenting on me, and their tests results do not show an ancestral timeline such as you’ll read about in my friend’s tale. I checked out some companies, and AncestryDNA seems to give the most comprehensive results. If you’re interested, their kit is also easy to use.

Back to my story:

My friend phoned me one day, and exclaimed rapturously, “I got the DNA results. My family originated in Egypt!”

Then she added, “My later ancestors migrated to Greece. Guess where else my ancestors migrated to?”

I responded, “Mongolia?”

There was a long pause. Then she said, in a stunned voice, “That’s right! How did you know?”

“It was obvious. Your immense love for Egyptian religions motivated you to become an Egyptian scholar, devoted to reviving ancient Egyptian spiritual practices, which became part of your personal devotions. Later, you seriously worked with Greek Gods. Then, you channeled material that had no geographical basis, as far you knew, but later found out that the material resonated with documented Mongolian traditions.”

I continued, “Your family only told you about your Caucasian Irish lineage. But your earlier ancestors influenced your mystical life. Your spiritual quest this lifetime follows the migration of your ancestors, step by step!”

The point of my story: I want to know if my DNA matches my various spiritual leanings.

There can be valid reasons we’re drawn spiritually to cultures we were not raised in. Our DNA might be one of those reasons. I don’t hold with the idea that you should only use the spiritual tools of your obvious ancestors.

Mind you, I am not okaying co-option. I’m saying legitimate cross cultural shamanism exists.

That legitimacy is hard to come by. It would take a whole book to explain how to pull it off ethically and otherwise, so I won’t get into it here, except to say:

By “cross-cultural shamanism,” I don’t mean “core shamanism,” AKA the idea that shamanism is primarily the same in all cultures. I disagree with the modern standardization of shamanism.

My experience is that shamans individualize according to cultural differences, and way past that, individualizing family by family and person by person.

My personal definition of legitimate cross-cultural shamanism is an ethical, thoughtful blend of earth based mysticism as it manifests in various cultures.

Moving on:

I am a little worried. With adventure, comes fear of the unknown: am I going to like the DNA test results?

But mostly I’m excited about the DNA adventure I am embarking on.

And I feel gratitude for science and magic.

When the DNA results arrive, I’ll post them here, and share how it impacts my mystical journey.
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Note: I first posted this blog May 2015 at http://witchesandpagans.com/sagewoman-blogs/a-faerie-haven.html and post it again here for those of you who tend to read me here.
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NewsPrpl

Upcoming Training

Update: The day and time of this event has been changed, so you can enroll if the new schedule suits you better. New schedule: we meet seven Sundays, from 4 to 5 PM EST, starting Sunday November 8. Classes are consecutive weeks except we skip November 29, for Thanksgiving weekend. Reserve Sunday Jan 10, same time, for a makeup class in case I’m unavailable for one of the planned sessions. Rest of class info is below:

Come Home to the Faerie Queen
A Seven-Week Faerie Shamanism Training

FeyRealm

The Faerie Queen tells us, “I’m Mother of the Faerie Nation. And more of you are awake to your magic now—lovers, warriors, children and elders, changelings, cats in disguise, bards, wolves, gardeners, corporate executives, tricksters, star-children, and many others. Come to me, come home, I will protect you and tutor you until our starlit cells flow back and forth between us like the milky way in all its immense luminosity. You’re awake now, my Faerie children. The new global Fey village has begun.”

This class responds to the Faerie Queen’s call. You’ll create previously impossible possibilities for you, Gaia, and all beings. Honest. The curriculum is the culmination of decades’ work. Rewrite your DNA and break through to the stars.

Faerie Ancestor who is a guardian to this site. Silk Painting, Outlaw Bunny

Faerie Ancestor who is a guardian to this site. Silk Painting, Outlaw Bunny

The Fey-spark in humans re-ignited. Ancient starlit blood came forward till it finally hit critical mass; Faerie magic’s thoroughly awake in many people. This leaves us with new questions and new approaches needed to answer them:

image* Have you sensed shifts in the human/plant/mineral psyche?

* Can you have self-healing, prosperity, and great sex during present times?

image* Do you feel the mystic part of you desperately needed by everyone, including you, right now?

* How can we better use our new/old/undiscovered/shifted powers, both magical and mundane?

image* Do you find Paganism too dogmatic, not pagan enough? Do you long for fellowship that supports your unique vision?

* How can mystics—ranging from activists to quiet magicians—come together to love, celebrate, and protect Gaia? Can Gaia—and ourselves—be happy, or even survive, without such a tribe happening globally?

This class addresses these issues with innovative magic and fresh ideas.

FDG2015ProfileYou also receive lessons to be your style Faerie shaman. There are different places in Faerie, each special. One is your home. This class helps you go home. If you’re already home, you’ll learn (more) about its unique magic and spirituality, and use them practically to empower your mundane life.

This teleseminar is multi-leveled, suitable to entry-level beginners and adepts.

Come Home to the Faerie Queen qualifies as one of the two electives needed before advanced Third Road training.

Nuts and bolts:
* These are group meetings by phone. To participate, just dial the phone from anywhere.
* Class meets seven Sundays, from 4 to 5 PM EST, starting Sunday November 8. Classes are consecutive weeks except we skip November 29, for Thanksgiving weekend.
* Reserve Sunday Jan 10, same time, for a makeup class in case I’m unavailable for one of the planned sessions.
* Tuition: $250. If you’ve taken it before, repeat it at half-price. Your usual long-distance charges apply and appear on your phone bill. The event’s area code is a U.S. #.
* Enroll here.
* Or pay by check or money order here.
* Upon receipt of payment, I email you event phone number, etc.
* Call me—814-337-2490—for more info or to discuss scholarship, trade, or payment plan. Do not email me. Refunds unavailable.

imageIf you want to be part of this experience, enroll now, because I don’t know when I’ll be able to teach it again. It’s maybe been six years since the last time.

If you see someone else’s class that sounds the same, this class is original material. No one teaches it but me.

Faerie holds daily miracles. I trust that.

Enroll here.

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A mystical event is no substitute for medical care by a trained physician, psychiatric counseling, or other therapeutic treatments. Participants are personally responsible for the consequences of their voluntary participation.

Wyrd 2014

My wyrd New Year’s resolution: Ecstasy and ease.

Sometimes, it is vital to do things the easy way. I work hard on my spirituality. That’s important. But we can get stuck in the idea that growth has to be all work, no play. The resulting experience sucks—I do not want to feel like God’s drone!—and does not always make for the most inner growth or power. So I constantly create fun modalities for inner change, for my students and myself.

Life and growth will not always be easy. When I’m counseling a trauma survivor, we may be in painful tears together. That is a good thing. Hard work, balanced by fun and ease, has been my ongoing approach.

Empowerment can be accomplished through joyful simplicities. Joy nurtures the spirit. For example, I receive commissions for fantasy portraits, which I paint in trance. They affirm the client’s wondrous essence, inner and outer beauty, and power. Below is one I did of myself. Scroll past it for the rest of the blog:

MddleManagment4ChaosGod2012WT

With the Divine, we can grow spiritually, and overcome obstacles, the easy way, sometimes. Heck, not just sometimes, but a lot of the time!

Recently, I asked one of my students to give me a spiritual challenge—whatever she felt I most needed to work on. Oddly enough, it was to do things the easy fun way. Huh? Me, who is already so good at that? I mean, I have a ball in my life. There is mega-laughter in the classes I teach. And my Gods have a great sense of humor, too—we have a blast together.

But you know what? My student was right. There’s always another level to reach toward. I’m forever wanting to achieve more for the community and in my private life. And I am not, right this second, referring to more fun and ease, but to what I want to accomplish overall.

After meditating on the assignment my student gave me, I realized that the progress I envisioned, for both my private life and what I want to accomplish as a community shaman, could only be achieved through a new devotion to fun and ease. Hah, what a great challenge—to have more fun than ever and go easier than ever!

2014 is my year of doing that.

With so many demands on our time and money, streamlining our lives and choosing pleasure may not seem possible. Nor may there seem time to get needed spiritual support. But here are three easy ways to do all that. There’s that word again—”easy!”

1) Ignore new year promotion-hype that sells you a lot of product, which is the same old stuff that never worked before. Stick with the tried-and-true. Sometimes, we blame the tools we have, instead of our use of them. If you’re not using a hammer, it’s not the hammer’s fault that the nail never gets driven in. Revisit one of your basic tools that has supported you in the past. Use it a little.

2) Ignore hyped up approaches that demand more time than any sane productive person has. Instead, take a moment. For example, keep your tarot deck or runes by your bed. When you wake up in the morning, pull one card or rune, as you’re scrambling out of bed to feed the kids. While you go about your morning routine, spend a few moments thinking about the card. I’m not suggesting you go into trance, sit in a lotus position, or have deep thoughts. I’m saying that, if you cannot do a lot, do not be discouraged and forsake all attempts—just do what you can. Giving a tarot card or rune some consideration, even for a few moments, can open us to Divine guidance, inner resolve, or peace, regarding the day ahead. It can really be a benefit.

3) When you finish reading this, keep heart open to fun, easy ways to: Grow, overcome life’s challenges, and have support for your life.

Here is a way to have all three. Enjoy a Spirit Portrait—it is a gentle, organic process of empowerment. And you give me a chance to fulfill my New Year’s resolution. I adore mirroring people’s wondrousness to them; it is truly some of the best fun. My spirit grows a bit with every painting. Together, we make a great 2014. . . . Wow, I love that idea! Providing joyful support, having a great time in the process, and our shared happiness? Yes! Info at http://www.outlawbunny.com/2012/03/16/fantasy-portrait/

May our fey-touched hearts enjoy 2014 to the max!

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No Need to Fit In!

People trying to decide if I’m the right guide for them often say, “I’m eclectic, so I don’t know if I’ll fit into what you teach.”

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Detail. Faerie Realm, silk painting, Francesca De Grandis

Oh dear! It is terrible that the prevalence of bad teachers requires that issue to even come up.

Most of my students are eclectic. I am, too. Those who look for the core of reality, the heart of magic, and the essence of mysticism do not want to be boxed in by labels (Wicca, hedge witch, Druid, Taoist, Christian), and are not looking for ego-feeding titles. They are drawn to teachers who, whatever their path, support students to find their own idea—and experience—of the core of reality, heart of magic, and essence of mysticism. I hope I’m one such teacher.image

During our lessons, we transcend labels and titles, to focus on finding our individual beliefs, personal myths, and shamanic gifts. If folks already have them, I help them polish their personal approach, even if they’re already master level.

Magic, Spirit, and life cannot be standardized.

I do tend to call my classes “Wicca” or “Faerie.” I’m of the generation in which “Wicca” and “Faerie” referred to (among other things) individualized earth-spirituality. Unfortunately, nowadays, those terms are often used rigidly, to denote a set liturgy and belief system, which invalidates many beautiful Gaia lovers.

You’re not alone if you’ve faced invalidation. When first teaching (eek, that was in the eighties!), I thought I knew the one true way. Then I realized my students were my peers and fellow travelers. Guess what? After explaining I wld no longer support a hierarchy, imageI lost many of my students, they migrated to a fundie tradition of fey magic. I was devastated, stunned that people I loved—many of these were my beloved initiates—could not make that move with me, that attempt at being egoless. It was, and still is, painful to see ego takes precedence over ethics, effective magic, fey sensibilities, and beauty. But I mention my experience because it might be validating for folks who went through something similar. Ok, enough negative stuff. To quote “Buffy, “not for me the furrowed brow.”

Onto the rest of my beautiful day—my Gods’ embrace, a flow of joy, magic, and right livelihood, a flow carrying me toward even more joy, magic, and right livelihood. I hope this post is validating and/or, if you’re considering me as a guide, informative.

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥
Want shamanic counseling? I can guide by phone. Book an appointment online. http://www.outlawbunny.com/pastoral-counseling/