Lokean Swamp Witch: Trickster-Induced Mysticism and Mayhem

Diary of a Lokean mystic.

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Heather Freysdottir

Heather Freysdottir

Lokean nun, writer, swamp witch. Heather is a Pagan monastic, writer, editor, and mother. She has written and edited for a variety of publications and social media, including science journals, romance novels, and technology blogs. She also holds degrees in education and speech-language pathology, and has a passion for historical linguistics.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

I have been quiet here lately because I've had local work going on, and I've been doing self-work as well. Shadow work is interesting, and mine has dug up something that I kind of knew, but I didn't realize just how much one particular word has run my life: lazy. There's a lot of emphasis in spiritwork on, well, work. I'm not here to criticise anyone else's Work, mind you, this is me considering myself and my inner workings. But lazy can and has run my life. I have three advanced degrees. I got them while parenting a child who needed considerable medical therapy. I founded my own indie publishing house before I was 30 years old. I edited for a prestigious science journal by the age of 36. I pursued marathoning. Despite being a Gen Xer, I realize that I can't really use the word slacker in a self-description.

These are all fine and good achievements, and I am glad of the knowledge and skills that I gained in pursuit of them, but I also stayed at them, the jobs particularly, because I feared being lazy. Especially my own company. I grew to hate publishing because I never got to write. When the company went under, I blamed myself for not getting more involved in the financial end, even though I HATED it, and the initial business agreement was that I would not work in that side because I was already writing, editing, doing layout and author recruitment, with promo as necessary. I can't imagine how much more I would have hated my job if I'd added on financial work as well. I would have burnt myself out even more, for fear of being lazy.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

I’ve been quiet this month, but I’ve had a lot of offline goings ons – I am teaching regularly at the Raven Faerie, and I have a class Saturday, August 31st from 10-12 on making your own rune set. We also have a psychic fair coming up on September 7th as well. Do ALL the physical work! during Pop’s month is not a huge surprise to me, given that the Vanir are about hard work leading to prosperity. The other pleasant surprise I got was that Mom came around – Gerda.

I have strong feelings about Gerda and Her lessons – she’s an Etin Woman among the Vanir, a stern Queen, and a keeper of healthy boundaries. She’s not a cuddly Mother, but She is fiercely protective of those She loves. I have more in common with Her than just Pop, and having an opportunity to reconnect with Her is a delight, like finding a long-lost relative. Truth be told, when I picked my nom de pagan, I considered the notion of using Heather Gerdasdottir, because not many use their mother's name for the surname *cough* Laufeyson *cough* and because I adore Her. Pop as a surname won out because He has pointed out, rightly, that I do much better with Disir ancestor work than I do with  my Alfar.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Shirl Sazynski
    Shirl Sazynski says #
    The Celtic story of Grainne and Diarmuid is relevant to the tone of your quotes. It has similar themes of an opposed love-match (w
Update on FB anti-Pagan hate group

The "Witches must die by fire" Facebook group has returned from its temporary removal. I had a thoughtful reader named Morey, who runs social activism groups on the site, suggested reporting the page to Interpol instead of Facebook, in the hopes of holding them to a higher authority. You can report the page to Interpol here: http://www.interpol.int/Forms/Contact_INTERPOL

If you decide to go the Interpol route, include a screenshot (I have one in this blog post) along with the link (https://www.facebook.com/WitchcraftTheBattleLinesHaveBeenDrawn) and the page's title. Talk about the real-world violence against witches - a quick Google search of "witches and Africa" yields stories like this: http://www.iol.co.za/news/africa/family-of-witch-hacked-to-death-1.1296038#.UhJ3p5LVBrs - this page is not a troll or a parody, this is someone inciting people to violence, death, and mutilation. If you need a sample letter, feel free to borrow or amend mine:

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    I just received this in my in-box from Facebook: "You reported Witches must die by fire. for harassment. This page has been remove
  • Amy Begley
    Amy Begley says #
    Yes both pages have now been removed. "Lady Liberty League" and "Circle Sanctuary" both wrote letters to Facebook about the pages.
  • Christine Kraemer
    Christine Kraemer says #
    Helpful informational page for explaining why these pages contain credible threats of violence: http://www.whrin.org/
  • Caleen Canady
    Caleen Canady says #
    My husband had a suggestion regarding this site that I thought we should pass along. He's dealt in security and investigations and
  • Amy Begley
    Amy Begley says #
    I like that idea Caleen but I have read on some of the Facebook pagan pages that some pagans/wiccans are now under personal attack
Facebook claiming page titled "Witches Must Die by Fire" Not Hate Speech

Very few things in social media get me too terribly worked up, but today I encountered and reported a Facebook page titled, "Witches must die by fire." The fact that an anti-Pagan site on FB exists doesn't surprise me, though how overt that hate is took me aback. What disturbs me more is that Pagans who have reported are getting an answer of "there is no evidence of hate speech."

How can a page that spreads slander, misinformation and exhorts violence against Pagans not be termed hate speech? If this were any other faith, would this even be vaguely acceptable? If you subbed in Jews or Muslims, would this be allowed. I would hope not, but given this, I am kind of afraid to ask, actually.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Áine
    Áine says #
    I'm afraid I can still see the page from the original link. Reporting it now.
  • Richard Daley
    Richard Daley says #
    what do you expect from a country that missionary's literally band there original pagan traditions and brain washed them all into
  • Kaitlyn Hancock
    Kaitlyn Hancock says #
    Keep reporting these people. Facebook has some automated bs, but enough complaints will get their attention. I contacted Covenant
  • Ali
    Ali says #
    I too, have found this second page that is obviously based in some unfortunate African country where unlucky females who come unde
  • Greg
    Greg says #
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/163986480405404/ Here is another FB group advocating violence and death against witches and "WIZZ

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
your Godphone is okay

Today's post is begat by some "never trust your godphone, it takes years to develop" type posts floating around on the interwebs. I'm not picking on anyone in particular because I can't even tell you which one I saw, just that it annoyed me into telling a friend that I felt like that attitude is demeaning and that telling someone to disbelieve all their UPG is to undermine their trust and relationship in the Divine. I also expressed to said friend that I felt like saying that was a losing battle, because so many people drink that kool-aid right from the start. Hel, Idrank that kool-aid initially, y'all.

I was rewarded with a dream of Spirit Worker school where everyone was handed out adult diapers. "Put 'em on, you're gonna need 'em."

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

I was gonna kick off my month for Pop with a more general post on how awesome He is, but I came across this on the blogosphere, and I wanted to quote it, because the blog it's from is about health at any size.

"When I started out, I felt like I should post every comment that wasn’t just overt spam.   I believed that it was somehow cowardly to not post hater comments.  I have since changed my mind – I work hard to put out good information on this blog and develop a readership and I don’t have to hand that forum over to a hater to prove anything.  People are allowed to behave like idiots but I’m under no obligation to give them a place to do so."

via How to Handle a Hater | Dances With Fat.

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Questions on Pagan Monasticism

I'm writing today about Pagan monasticism, for a couple of reasons, one being that a colleague in my study group asked about how you can tell whether you’re called to clergy as a monastic, particularly as opposed to being a priest or priestess. The other reason I'm writing about it is because many Pagans are not aware that monasticism is a vocation in our faith, and certainly even fewer people outside Paganism.

“While in common usage the terms "nun" and "Sister" are often used interchangeably (the same title of "Sister" for the individual member of both forms), they are considered different ways of life, with a "nun" being a religious woman who lives a contemplative and cloistered life of meditation and prayer for the salvation of others, while a "Religious Sister", in religious institutes like Mother Teresa's Missionaries of Charity, lives an active vocation of both prayer and service, often to the needy, sick, poor, and uneducated.”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nun

I can’t find the same sort of reference for the difference between “priest” and “monk,” although I suspect it’s somewhat similar. It’s been a long time since I formally studied Catholic doctrine. However, I’d also say that in Paganism, the lines are a bit fuzzier in terms of monasticism. If we were using the strict Catholic definitions, I’m somewhere between a nun and a Sister – I have a large amount of most of my days dedicated to contemplative study, prayer, and meditation, but I also do a lot of community work online and in person. This is why I have “free-range nun” listed as my occupation. It’s sort of tongue-in-cheek, but it’s accurate.

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