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Pagan News Beagle: Fiery Tuesday, October 10 2017

Trans people in Mexico turn to a local folk saint for patronage. Experts debunk the idea that stress doesn't affect people of color. And Costa Rica's Savegre River obtains protection from UNESCO. It's Fiery Tuesday, our segment about societal and political news from around the globe! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Keeping It Together

It’s been a rough summer; honestly, it’s been a rough year.  Like many people, I suffer from depression.  My emotional and energetic state often reflects that of the people and world around me.  In the best of times it can be difficult for me think positively and move forward creatively.  In times like these it’s pretty much all I can do just to keep up the illusion of being a fully functional adult.  Thankfully, as a magickal person I have a whole host of spirits and allies to help me keep it together.

My personal practice is a unique amalgam of traditional and pop culture practices and when it comes to dealing with my depression it's pretty much all hands on deck.  I know there are a lot of people out there with strong reservations about mixing practices.  While I can understand seeing mixed practices and pantheons as potentially problematic, I believe it’s all a matter of execution.  In my view  a sincere practice done respectfully and with the full consent of all participating parties is pretty much always acceptable.  It’s not uncommon for me to call on Santa Muerte, Baron Samedi, and Tony Stark in the course of an evening.  Yes, I will call on a Mexican folk saint, a Loa, and an Avenger at the same time, but I do not do so lightly.  I have strong, long-standing working relationships with these metaphysical beings; we know each other very well.  I’ve worked with all of them on their own and have discussed and gotten permission from them to call on them in inter-pantheon situations.  The relationships that I have with my allies forge a connection between them, as they all care about me, and make mixing pantheons and practices a lot less incongruous than it would be otherwise.  It’s like asking your sibling, best friend, and favorite co-worker to help you move; they may not really know each other but because of their close relationship with you they can probably get along well enough to help you out.  I wouldn’t want to call on spirits I hadn’t worked with before in a mixed practice setting.  This is more like putting up a craigslist ad for help moving and expecting everyone that happens to show up to get along.  Not a great idea.  When needs are sincere and explicit permission from the beings involved has been acquired, then call on whatever and whomever will best aid the situation.

Depression is a gnarly and ever-changing beast that manifests differently for everyone.  For me, depression can morph its form at any time, requiring different energies moment to moment just to make it through the day.  The different entities that I work with on a regular basis all have different qualities that can help me in different ways.  This is why I will shamelessly mix practices and pantheons as needed.  Tony Stark is my go to ally when I’m depressed because his depression and emotional difficulties manifest similarly to mine.  He’s a character that tends to take the world on his shoulders and get beaten down by the big picture while putting up the facade of thriving.  That’s pretty much what my depression looks like.  I often call on him to help me feel less isolated and to feel understood.  I also have a big plushie Iron Man that functions as part talisman, part comfort object - a little juvenile sure, but it helps.  I’ll also almost always call on Santa Muerte when I’m not feeling my best.  You may not know this, but Santa Muerte gives awesome hugs.  No matter what’s going on she’s always there for me with real acceptance and without any kind of judgment.  She’s my go to particularly when I need to forgive myself.  When I need permission to take care of myself rather than helping everyone around me I call on Baron Samedi.  Strangely, or not, death deities and spirits are spectacular at reminding you what it means to be alive and the value thereof.  The Baron is amazing at helping me to see the beauty and joy around me and to actually take the time to engage with it; to live life rather than merely getting by. 

The aid received from my various allies can manifest in many different ways.  Simple conversation is the most common form of aid I request while dealing with negative emotions.  Just because you’re calling on a magickal being for aid doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to get them to do magickal work.  Metaphysical beings have entirely different wells of wisdom and past experiences to draw from in giving advice as well as offering comfort or support.  Witnessing of sorrows and an energetic hug can be as powerful a catalyst for emotional healing as any spell or working.  That being said, I often call on my allies to help hold my shields when I’m emotionally compromised.  Depression is hell on your aura and can make you a lot more vulnerable to external negative energies as well as sapping the energies you’d normally have to respond to trouble.  I’ve called on Buffy Summers a time or two to watch my back when I didn’t have the energy to do it myself.  The other main magick I’ll ask for help with while depressed is divination.  Depression is a dirty, rotten liar.  Depression clouds judgment like nothing else I’ve ever experienced, making clear divination a must when having to make critical decisions under its influence.  I’ve called on everyone from Cerridwen to Yoda to guide important divinations to help mitigate the incredible pessimism and negativity that depression brings.  Everyone has different needs while dealing with negative emotions, but we must remember that our metaphysical allies care about us and are willing to help.

When times are tough the wise practitioner calls for help.  We spend years cultivating relationships with a diverse host of deities, spirits, and other metaphysical beings so that we can call on them when we need them.  We must remember that our own mental and emotional health is as valid a reason to call for help as any other.  Our allies care about us, want us to thrive, and are willing to help us to do so - particularly when we are unable to help ourselves.  Regardless of what entities you have relationships with, take the time to discuss how they would be willing to help you.  If you’re prone to depression consider cultivating a few relationships just for aid with it.  Then, when the time comes actually utilize those relationships and ask for help.  A practitioner is never truly alone, there is always something listening.  Ask for help from beloved allies and you will keep it together.

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At the Crossroad of Spiritual and Mental Health

In my early 20s, I experienced a spontaneous awakening that fully opened up my world to the life of a mystic. Years later nothing quite cements the phrase “spiritual emergence” than the exact moment when the energetic point at my heart broke open.

There were a few problems with the journey I was about to begin. One, I didn't have a community, and the network of support I did have hadn't experienced anything like I was describing. I didn't have any local teachers. The greatest hurdle, though, was the fact that I'm bipolar with the diagnosis now of Bipolar Type II.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_web3_sm.jpgWhen I first started studying magic – almost 40 years ago now – one of the first things I learned was that doing magic on or for someone without their explicit knowledge and consent was a big no-no. There was potential for creating serious negative energy that could extend beyond the lifetime in which the spell was done, and lead to debts that would need to be repaid in successive lives. Such magic also went against my personal philosophy that I was responsible for myself and my own actions, and the gods would judge and reward me accordingly, and by extension, other people we responsible for their own actions and would be suitably judged and rewarded. In general I have lived by this, doing little magic (what I have done has been successful) and often without formal circle as I tend to work more with meditation and journeying. But I have a close family member who is changing my mind.

As a new teen at age 13, she maintained she was evil. Since I have a degree in psychology, I came to some conclusions about why she kept saying this. But those conclusions were not helpful. The child refused any and all self reflection, clinging to this story as if it were life. Perhaps it was. But we could not allow such a belief to continue, especially in the face of her increasing anger and simmering aggression. She had already done damage to property and struck her mother - the latter I didn’t’ find out until over years later – but the psychic dark cloud that surrounded her was enough to demonstrate that she was drawing on some bad stuff.

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Nine Weeks of Energy Clearing: Week 3- The Media Detox (Reclaiming Your Mind, Will and Relationship with the Gods), Pt. 2

For the next few weeks through Eostre, in preparation for Spring Equinox’s energies of renewal, I’m focusing this blog on energetically clearing our lives. Last week focused on the magical, energetic and religious repercussions of conditioning we receive through television and news media and how this is especially damaging to pagans and polytheists.

This week we continue the media detox with music, video games, social media and junk advertising.

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Nine Weeks of Energy Clearing: Week 2- The Media Detox (Reclaiming Your Mind, Will and Relationship with the Gods), Pt. 1

(For the next few weeks through Eostre, in preparation for Spring Equinox’s energies of renewal, I’m focusing this blog on energetically clearing our lives. Last week we began with looking at the Wyrd (Karma) of Used Things— examining the fate patterns attached to previously owned stuff.)


 You are your thoughts. Thoughts manifest your reality. But how many of those thoughts are really your own?

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Bjarni Böðvarr
    Bjarni Böðvarr says #
    Shirl, i am sorry to contact you this way, but please contact me ASAP it concerns SW Frithmoot 2 years ago.
  • J'Karrah
    J'Karrah says #
    Some great advice. I was please to see somethings I had already started doing (out of self defense!) on your list, and look forwa
  • Shirl Sazynski
    Shirl Sazynski says #
    Thanks! You're welcome.
An Integrated Model of Wellness for Difficult Times

“What drains your spirit drains your body. What fuels your spirit fuels your body.” 
― Caroline MyssAnatomy of the Spirit


As a chaplain working in a healthcare setting, I am intimately familiar with the current efforts to include the emotional and spiritual aspects of health into a more traditional allopathic medical model. In many respects, we are seeing great progress as integrative and functional medical models are starting to incorporate more holistic and alternative treatments like reiki and acupuncture in treatment plans for patients. But what does it mean to have an integrated model of health? And why is that so important in times of distress, especially now around the holidays and as a result of current political events?

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