I was following a witch who happened to be a psychic vampire, and now i need some informations on the subject for my exams, and i can't remember who it was, so pardon me if this is a weird question, but was it you?
I’m not terribly familiar with the subject, perhaps it was Tarot Blades you were thinking of? I believe she is quite knowledgeable.
I am writing one. I feel like there’s a lot missing in most witchy books, but I want your opinion.
I hope to cover some new ground. Judging from my outline so far, I think I will!
It’ll be a few years before it’s finished (no doubt!) - but tell me. What has been missing all your life, in terms of witchy books?
Brightest blessings on this lovely night, may your evening be full of incense and lit candles!
Things I think you should definitely cover, especially based on what you’ve written in the past, what is/isn’t cultural appropriation and how to be respectful when taking elements from other cultures to incorporate in your practice.
Few books that I’ve come across deal with practical ways to incorporate magic into your daily routine. There’s a lot about big/flashy/ornate rituals, but not so much about how to have magic in your everyday life.
I apologize if this is the wrong person to ask, I'm supremely new to this.
You said that Athena is your patron goddess- how did that happen? I've read some things saying that patron deities choose you, not the other way around, how can you tell if one has or encourage one to?
Thanks for the awesome question!
This is a really complex topic and I don’t pretend to be an expert by any stretch of the imagination, but here are some of my thoughts on the subject:
I don’t think there is any one right or wrong way to find a patron goddess or god. Some pagans chose a deity that they feel an affinity for, or some would say that they feel the specific goddess or god chose them. Everyone is different, for some it might take a lot of work and searching to find energy they connect with, for others it might be quite easy.
It’s also worth noting that patrons can change over time, you may have a really intense relationship with one deity for awhile and then it peters off. Conversely, it’s also possible to simultaneously have more than one patron.
It also really depends what you believe in. Some pagans see all gods as different manifestations of the same universal energy. Others see each deity as completely separate and its own entity.
In any case it amounts to same thing in the end. By having a patron goddess or god you are making a commitment to pursuing, working at and maintaining a relationship with that deity (or energetic pattern).
In my case, I’ve felt a connection and pull toward Athena since childhood. In one way or another symbolism relating to her kept popping up in my life. So that was the start of this relationship, but it has developed over time as my practice has grown. When I had my formal initiation rite, the name given to me was one of Athena’s epithets. That really solidified the relationship and signalled the beginning of my formal commitment to her.
I get a lot of my spiritual guidance from dreams, so that was also definitely a factor in my decision to dedicate myself to Athena. She appeared in a series of dreams I had and I knew that was her way of inviting me to follow her on this path. I think you always have free will, you can choose to accept the offer being put forth, or to reject it.
If you are at all skilled with lucid dreaming, it’s definitely worth trying to set the intention of meeting with deities you are interested in working with, or who are interested in working with you.
You certainly don’t have to dedicate yourself to any deity the first time you work with them, like any relationship it needs to be cultivated over time. More than anything, you need to commune with the deity you wish to work with in ritual space. Invite them to witness your rite, do an evocation, maybe work up to an invocation if you feel comfortable with that idea. Make offerings to that deity, don’t just ask for petitions or help. Light a candle in the deity’s honour. Meditate on the energy you are trying to reach within circle or in ritual space.
You could also try building an astral temple. (For an invaluable explanation of how to do this read The Art of Psychic Protection by Judy Hall.) This take time, but once it is established, if there are any deities who want your attention they could show up for a chat.
You could also try using forms of divination, e.g. tarot, runes, scrying - whatever you connect with in order to find a patroness.
Whatever you decide to do, keep detailed notes of your experiences. If your dreams, or divination doesn’t make sense at first it might mean doing some more reflection or research into the layers of symbolism you have encountered. If no deity that you currently are aware of is jumping out at you, do more research corresponding to the symbols and signs you are coming across and see who they correspond to.
While I am not a communication major, but a psychology major, it is totally okay if you don't have an answer to this question...
I think that it is absolutely awesome that you are in grad school and wonder if you could shed some light on how difficult it is to get accepted? I am a 3/4 year student in undergraduate pysch. and am looking forward to, but extremely scared of the application process and yada yada yada... Is it as difficult as as seems and what are some tips for getting accepted?
Thanks for the question!
I did my undergrad in politics (yay social sciences!), so hopefully some of what I say will be relevant or helpful. :)
I’ll be honest; I got into grad school the wrong way. I did two pretty huge things contrary to a lot of the advice that is out there on the subject.
First - I only applied to one program, which is such a no-no. (However, I had also applied to 7 law schools, so I had a plan B.)
Second - I’m also doing my MA at the same university as my BA, which traditionally is frowned upon. I think this is starting to change now, but the reasons why is worthy of its own post. I should also note that my situation is a bit unique, as my program is very non-traditional/unique in many regards, such as it is multidisciplinary and a joint program between two universities. Tecchnically, I am a student of two different schools.
I wouldn’t say that my acceptance was a complete fluke because I fit in and my research interests match the scope of the program, but let’s just say that I was very fortunate and things could have easily not turned out this way. I was on the wait-list at first, which I was kind of crushed about. I was very lucky and ended up being accepted soon after.
As self-deprecating as I am being, I think I did do some things right:
1- My reference letters were written the professors with whom I had the strongest personal relationships. These were the professors who I felt could best speak to my abilities, potential and ambitions.
I had short two meetings with each of them about 4 months before the application was due. In the first meeting I asked if they would feel comfortable writing on my behalf. In the second meeting I provided them with a copy of my CV, a draft of my personal statement, and pre-addressed / postage attached envelopes. During the second meetings, we also discussed what I hoped to get out of the program. I also made sure to provide each professor with a firm deadline of when the letters were due.
Remember: professors are very busy and they are doing you a favour - make it as easy for them as possible. Several weeks before the letters were due I sent each professor a reminder polite email and asked when I could pick the letters up. Some professors might prefer to mail the letters her or his self, but I’m a bit of a control freak and wanted to make sure I was in control of as many variables as possible.
2- Prior to applying to the program I had an informational meeting with the director of the program. It might feel a little sleazy, but many people do this in order to have an “in”. At the very least I don’t think it can hurt to have someone on the admissions committee who can put a face to a name when they are deliberating.
This meeting was very also helpful to me because it gave me a better sense of what the admissions committee were looking for in candidates. I was then able to tailor my application to better suit those criteria.
3- If there’s one thing I know about academics, it’s that they love to talk about their own work.
Talk to your current professors about their research and bring your interests into the conversation. Chances are that they know of suitable graduate programs, and may have colleagues there who they can put you in touch with.
Prior to applying to my program I also sought out a professor who I thought might be suitable to be my thesis advisor. We also had a short informational meeting where we spoke about his work and how it correlates to my own interests. Being able to include the name of someone on your application who has said she or he is willing to supervise you will greatly increase your chances of being admitted.
4 - Your current university probably has academic advising services available. Chances are there are free workshops and/or talks about applying to grad school, as well as applying for funding. Go to these, they are invaluable!
5 - Have academic “extras” on your CV which will make you stand out, e.g. submit to journals and publications, be a research assistant, be on committees, get a relevant internship etc. All of these will demonstrate your commitment to the field.
Anyway, I hope this helped somewhat. There are also a lot of great how-to websites and books out there on the subject. I would suggest looking some up!