Charissa Iskiwitch, she changes everything she touches

The words renaissance business woman is not something that many toss around, but that is exactly the phrase I would use for the person who I will be interviewing. Her name is Charissa Iskiwitch and this is why you want to know her.

Charissa Iskiwitch

For those who do not know the woman behind the curtain of one of the most dynamic growing organizations founded for Pagan businesses, who is Charissa Iskiwitch?

I am a practicing witch, healer, teacher and business owner.  I was born and grew up in Northwest Georgia.  I learned a love of nature and plants from my mother and grandmother and a love of doing things with my hands from both sides of my family.  I live on a 21 acre farm in Southern Appalachia with my husband and a whole herd of cats and dogs.

Let’s start at the beginning. How long have you been a Pagan and a business woman? And when did the two intersect?

I have identified as Pagan since the mid 80’s when I met a phenomenal wise woman that took me under her wing.  She invited me into her Circle and treated me as if I was one of them.  The entire Circle taught me all about their ways from the folk uses of herbs and animals to the spiritual side of gratitude to our gods.  I was always extremely spiritual and active in whatever church I was involved in even as a child and teenager.  This path touched me in a way I had never been touched before and sparked something inside me that has never gone out even all these years later.

My father was a business owner and he instilled in me the need to work for myself.  I have had jobs.  But I have also always done my own thing.  As a teenager I worked in fast food restaurants while building up an Avon business.  I worked at the library in college and started a dorm room business cutting cadets’ hair and sewing patches on their uniforms.  (I went to a military college) I later sold other lines like Princess House and Pampered Chef, made crafts with my sister and sold them at craft shows, started a firm to oversee tax credit properties and keep them in compliance with government regulations and went into business with my husband making coffee mugs with photos on them. This was all before the internet so marketing was much more expensive and on a smaller scale.

Currently my husband and I run Charissa’s Cauldron (http://CharissasCauldron.com ) and Kit’s Flea (http://kitsflea.com ).  Charissa’s Cauldron carries things I make as well as some other magickal supplies.  I make natural remedies, hoodoo waters and some other little tidbits.  I do some art but have not ever listed it in my shop.  I might decide to at some point. 

Can you tell us a little more about your business?

I started Charissa’s Cauldron shortly after we moved out into the country.  I have studied and worked with plants and other natural materials for years.  As an herbalist moving to a property that has both fields and woods was a dream come true.  The first line of products I decided to offer was flower remedies.  I have worked with and made flower remedies for years for family and friends.  Having access to so many different plants gave me the opportunity to have an ever expanding line of remedies to which I later added crystals. 

Charissa’s Cauldron

Since then I have added a line of Goddess, Lunar and Elemental Waters to the brand.  I sell retail through the website and have several shops and vendors selling my product on consignment.  I offer a unique program for retailers allowing them to not only make a profit from items sold in their store but also from sales made on my website.

What was your first brush with the wonderful worlds I like to call the American Neo Pagan Diaspora?

I was a part of what most Pagans would call a coven when I got started.  We just called it Circle. I went through 5 years of rigorous training.  The people that I circled with then had some unfortunate experiences with the greater Pagan world and instilled a little bit of fear in me about networking outside the Circle.  So later, when I was forced for geographical reasons to become solitary I stayed that way for quite a while.  Then I found a small shop that promoted a more social approach.  I kept quiet about my experience and played it as if I was brand new because my people had told me that I would not be accepted and could even be harassed. 

I realize now that was a mistake based on their limited experience with a local traditional Gardnerian coven.  It did make it harder to be taken seriously as a leader later on because some people remember me being “new” in those days.  I know that sounds crazy but people tend to do a lot of stupid things based on fear.

This led to your involvement and eventual leadership roles in your communities. Tell us what that was like.

When I first started seeking out others after going solitary I found covens galore but not much locally for solitaries.  Finally a friend forwarded something from Meetup.com to me.  It was a time and date at a local restaurant for witches to meet in our area.   I went with two friends and we found that that restaurant and time and date had been set automatically by Meetup.com.  There was one couple there.  There was no real life organizer setting up the meetings or planning any kind of activities.  So, my two friends volunteered me to step in as organizer.  That was in 2004. 

North Georgia Solitaires – PublicFBimage

The following year Meetup.com started charging organizers to use the service so we moved to a Yahoo Group as our means of communication.  Shortly thereafter we changed the name of the group from Marietta/Roswell Witches Meetup to North Georgia Solitaries (http://NGSolitaries.com).  From there we grew into a group that traveled together to festivals, put on festivals, put on open rituals every Sabbat, did community service work and helped local businesses network.  We started a charity – Pagan Assistance Fund and ran that for a few short years.    

Looking back, when you were earning your stripes in leadership and the social webbing of the various causes and societies, what do you wish you could have told your younger self if you had a time machine?

Do not be afraid to be who you are.  Do not let others bully you because your pedigree does not fit into their experience.   If you want to teach, teach.  If you want to heal, heal.  Helping others build their dreams is something you are called to do but do not let it derail your own dreams.

How different is it now?

The popularity of Wicca being the exclusive club that is somehow better or more legitimate than all others has shifted.  It is no longer unpopular to admit that your practice is not Wiccan.  As for leaders, I believe that true leadership is about walking the walk you talk about.

Too many leaders are out there telling us what to do and how to behave but not doing the “boots on the ground” work.  We still do not have a lot of the resources available to us as Pagans that the more mainstream businesses, religions, musicians, authors, artists, journalists and events have.

What things have improved? What things have seemed to regress or degenerate?

Society in general has changed both in positive and negative ways due to the internet.  Before the internet it was harder to find other Pagans to network with.  You had to actively seek them out in person or using snail mail.  Now you can find thousands on social media from the comfort of your own home.  On the flip side of that arguments can escalate within minutes because social media allows for instant responses before people have a chance to think things through.

Charissa Iskiwitch

 

What do you feel about the current state of Pagan leadership right now?

I believe there are many good people trying to do good things for the Pagan community.  There are so many more Pagans than there were 40 or 50 years ago.  Consequently, there are more people stepping up into leadership roles.

When it comes to our role in the landscape of U.S. Society, do you feel we are coming into our own as a group to be listened to in the places of power, or are we still back at the Starhawk point of activism?

I believe we still have a way to go.  The current political climate in the country makes me believe that minorities of all kinds, especially religious minorities have much more work ahead of us before we can expect widespread acceptance.

Do you see any new “Starhawk” level leaders on the field right now?

We owe much to the leaders that pioneered the freedoms we now enjoy.  We still have a lot to do and need leaders to step up and work to create a cohesive community for Pagans and remove the barriers that isolate us from mainstream society.  We have quite a few leaders that work through interfaith organizations to bring down some of the barriers.

Image: Pexels

Where have we progressed, in your view, when it comes to our festival relevance insofar as incorporating our gatherings with that of, say, the level of the local Baptist Picnic, or Elk’s cookout, in acceptance?

We are already starting to see a little more acceptance.  However, the social climate has taken a bit of an ugly turn recently causing some of the more vocal mainstream religious groups to target anything they do not understand and consequently fear.

When will we get there?

I believe it will get worse for all minorities before it gets better.

Do you believe it will be in our lifetimes that Paganism is on a par of freedom with other mainstream religions in this nation?

I would love to believe it will but I believe we will need another generation or more before the people running the country have evolved past the fear of differences.

What role do Pagan Businesses and Media play in making that happen?

I can only base my opinion on my own experiences.  I find that behaving professionally and speaking with tolerance effects more change than accusing and pointing fingers.

By being afforded first hand vision of how the sausage is made, so to speak, what has given you the perseverance to continue?

My father served in local government and instilled in me the need to serve community.  As early as my teen years I did what I could for my community.  From organizing a movement in my high school to make an unused corner of the property into an outdoor mini-park for students that wanted to spend their lunch or study hours outside, to traveling with my church group to lower-income communities and do chores like clearing an overgrown yard, painting houses, home repair and helping with the local Meals on Wheels program. After college I started a pet rescue operation in St. Louis helping to reunite lost pets with their owners and get unclaimed pets out of the pound and into foster homes while we looked for forever homes. When I joined the Pagan community it was natural for me to be drawn into service.

Image: Unsplash

No matter what kind of community service you are doing there are challenges.

Organizers and leaders must overcome those challenges for the good of their community. 

I continue to serve because I love community and people and feel that it is our duty as humans to try and bridge the gaps between different facets of the world so all can enjoy a safe and helpful community.

For a while you were doing events with Pagan Pride Project. How was that? And how did it affect your views on Pagan businesses?

Actually, I did not organize a Pagan Pride myself.  I support the Pagan Pride Project whole-heartedly.  For several years my organization, North Georgia Solitaries, provided labor for loading and unloading at Atlanta Pagan Pride.  One year we hit the road and attended Savannah Pagan Pride as a group and got there early so we could provide loading and unloading help.  We find that having a group of people helping vendors to unload and set up keeps traffic moving so other vehicles can pull up and get unloaded.

I was on the board of Church of the Spiral Tree that put on Auburn Pagan Pride a few years ago but I have to say that Linda Kerr did most of the work on organizing that.  I just helped out by providing ritual, a children’s activity table and a couple of workshops.  I offer my graphic design services free of charge for programs and marketing to any Pagan Pride that wants it.  I always donate product for fundraising to as many of the Pagan Prides I can.  

I organized two local events, Beltane Bash and Pagan Pathways Festival in addition to an open Sabbat celebration every Sabbat as well as an annual Litha camping trip for several years.

What was the thing that sparked your passion to create the Pagan Business Network?

My health the last few years has kept me from staying as active in the local community as I would like.  I am able to attend events if I do not have to travel too far, but the physical elements involved in putting on events was too much for me.  When I decided to start Charissa’s Cauldron I was looking for ways to network.  I did not find anything more than a few Facebook groups where you could post ads.  I wanted more.  My father taught me that if you cannot find the kind of organization you are looking for to create one.

I have been a member of many business networking organizations, some geared for women and some for local businesses.  They work.  I created a network for women business owners in my local community when I was running my family’s insurance agency after my father died. It just made sense for Pagan businesses to have a network.

Was this mainly an intellectual motivation that drove you, or was there something more at play?

I like to say jokingly that when I started my own business I got lonely.  That really is not that far from the truth.

Running a successful business means you must wear many hats.  Not all of us have the knowledge to wear all of those hats effectively.  For online retailers you need to have a place to sell online, create your product and market your product.  If you do not want to use a selling site like Etsy or Amaranth you need to have a way to put up a website.  You need to find suppliers that do not eat up your profit margin, learn how to take effective photographs and edit them, write effective copy, and learn how to market in a way that allows you to sell your product and still have enough left to restock and have a little left over as profit.

PBN News Ad

Having a network means we share our knowledge.  We are building lists of resources such as suppliers.  By adding an ezine such as PBN News we have a place we can help promote each other, keep up with community news and share information about events some of our businesses might want to be a part of. 

 

Our main website has pages that list all kinds of resources.  We have built some social media channels we use to promote community businesses, artists, authors, presenters and more.

 

When you hear the words, Pagan Business, what do you feel is the mental image most people have now?

I believe vendors and brick and mortar stores offering Pagan type goods come to mind first.

How do you want to change that?

Anyone doing something that requires getting the word out falls into the definition of business I want the Pagan Business Network to use.  This includes musicians, radio stations, authors, artists, podcasters, bloggers, presenters, teachers, clergy, causes, events, vendors, online stores, brick and mortar stores and so much more.

In your experience as a successful business owner, what do you observe to be the most difficult barrier to the success of niche businesses?

Targeting your demographic is crucial.  Today there are so many Pagans working to build a business of their own it makes it harder to get the attention needed.  Then there are big box places you can shop that are able to offer goods at lower prices.  I find that one of the best ways to stand out is to become known in the community.  If you are running a shop online get involved in online communities.  Not as a troll or someone pushing their business but more as someone that shows they care about the community and are willing to share knowledge and be present in discussions. 

You need to build credibility for buyers to feel comfortable buying your product.  Presenters and teachers need to build credibility to entice speaking engagements or students.  Musicians and authors will sell more of their work if they are viewed as approachable.

The Pagan Business Network was designed to do what?

PBN’s mission is to build resources through cooperation and collaboration.  In other words, bring the Pagan business community together rather than treat each other as competition.  We are always stronger together.

Pagan Business Network Ad

You built an empire. Just how expansive is this?

I would say that I am building a network.  I want to bring people together so we can all help each other find success in our chosen paths.

Can you tell us about your vision in the beginning vs. now?

Honestly, when I started this I really only expected to build a small group of businesses.  I did not anticipate how hungry our business community is for something like this. 

Instead of the 20-30 businesses I expected we have over 2000 businesses participating in one way or another.   With that growth the vision has grown. 

I was looking for a group of businesses to share knowledge and skills.  With the sheer number of people that have become a part of this we have expanded the vision to include providing actual promotion as well as a place for writers and budding writers to publish, a way for musicians to get their music heard in more places, and a place for business owners to be spotlighted so they can start building a larger presence.  I hope to see PBN add a few more resources to the table in the future.

What unforeseen challenges have arisen due to this labor of love?

As I mentioned before my health comes into play limiting what I can do.  My biggest personal challenge is setting limits for myself and not trying to do it all.

In what ways have you been able to master them? What has been your main support system?

I cannot take responsibility for mastering anything.  I have found a great team of people that are inspired by a similar vision.  That team makes all of this doable.  In that team I have found some friends that I hope to have for the rest of my life.  My husband keeps a close eye on me and calls a time out when I put my health at risk.  My mother supports anything I do regardless of how crazy it seems.  My chosen brother (meaning not by blood) always supports my wacky ideas and joins right in to help without question.

You are very gifted with creativity, which you have manifested in many ways. How did flower essences become your forte?

I am not sure that they are necessarily my forte.  I do many other healing methods as well.  I was first introduced to Bach Flower Remedies years ago when I was looking for some help dealing with grief.  I felt that I had to step up when my father died and take care of my mother, settle his estate and run his business until we decided what to do with it.  My sisters were not able to do any of that at the time.  I feel emotions deeply and found it hard to deal with the business at hand while grieving.  I found Bach and took them for a couple of years.  While I was taking them I read every book I could get my hands on and searched out as many websites as I could about them.  I started making them and experimenting with my own.  I decided that I was going to incorporate them into my healing methods. 

I am a Reiki master and have certifications in several other methods of healing including herbalism, color therapy, sound therapy and crystal therapy.  Essences just seemed to fit right in.

Pagan Business Network Flyer

Have you found that a change in the way they are accepted in the last few years?

I never really saw any acceptance problems.  Although I have seen some of the mainstream media personalities endorse Bach Flower Remedies.

What inspires your selections of herbs and blends for your products?

I tend to work primarily with what I have access to.  I often tell students they should start with the plants in their backyard before worrying about others.  I can find all the plant ingredients I need for just about any working within walking distance of my back door.

 

 

You have so many projects and creations, what management system do you use? Is there a small pixie with a rolodex in your pocket or what?

No, but I would love to find someone to keep my calendar up to date and organized.  For now I use Google calendars together with Google drive.  It seems to work for me.

Recently a change came about in the disposition of your businesses. Can you share what is going on right now?

My husband called a time out on me after a run of being in and out of the hospital this summer.  We decided that it would be best if I handed off the reins of PBN to someone else.  Rhiannon Hood, an exceptionally talented business owner has agreed to take on the leadership role of the Pagan Business Network.   I am moving into more of a right hand position to assist her.

How has your role changed in PBN?

I will continue to be extremely hands on.  I am currently launching a couple of columns for PBN News and a show on PBN Radio.

What is your wish to see happen going forward? And how do you plan to contribute to this vision?

I would like to see PBN continue to work towards promoting our businesses, giving writers a place to publish and podcasters a place to air their shows.  I want to work towards better promotion for our authors and musicians. 

I want to see PBN bring more Pagan businesses together to help each other reach our goals.  

As for how I will contribute, I will continue to utilize all the business skills I have to help the Pagan business community.

We’ve talked a lot about you and your businesses and your creations, but let’s get into some more heady stuff now. What part do you feel your connection to the Divine has had in your life so far?

Image milada-vigerova

I have always had a strong connection with the Divine.  When I was younger I focused more on the Christian god because that is what my family did.  Now I work more with the Pagan gods.  I have always felt that my experiences are blessings and I should use that to help others.  That is what led me to teach and to do the clergy work I do.

Would you say that you have been walking a path that has been predestined to a point, or are you totally in a freewheel roll?

I believe that a path with choices along the way is offered by the powers that be.  It is up to me to make choices on which way I go.  Each choice I make creates or removes choices.  I would say that my path has been an extremely winding and wandering type of path due to the fact that everything interests me. 

How have your recent experiences affected your spiritual practice? Or has it been the other way around?

I believe that each affects the other.

 As I get older I find more and more beauty in the world around me and more compassion for what others are going through.   When I was younger things seemed more defined in my mind of who and what was good and bad.  I see life and people differently now.

Friends come and go, but spiritual relationships are more lasting and enduring. Do any pillars in your life come to mind that you would like to talk about who have served as mentors, teachers, comrades, and inspirations?

There are so many.  I would start with my parents.  They taught me about community, compassion and creative thinking.  My grandparents taught me the value of hard work.  One grandmother taught me to look at my differences as gifts and not handicaps.  The other, along with my mother taught me the love of nature and working with plants.

You are something of an inspiration yourself. And you are still going. What counsel do you have for the aspiring person, of any age, who seeks to step out on faith and pursue their dreams?

Be smart about it.  Have a detailed plan of what you want and how to get there.  Keep a backup so you do not hurt yourself financially while you get started.  Have faith in yourself and do not let anyone tell that you cannot do what inspires you.

What affirmation would you give them in the face of detractors and underminers?

One step and one day at a time.  Let the negative energy and comments flow off you like water off a duck’s back.

Many people have a theme song, or genre of music, that they turn to get them going and rev them up to win. What is yours?

I love country music when I want to get my energy level up.  I love the ballads of some of our Pagan musicians as well as classical when I want to relax.

And if you had a theme song for your life up to now, what would it be?

“Thank You For This Day” by Karen Drucker

So, what is next for Charissa?

I will continue to build my businesses in 2017.  I would like to get my product into more retail stores and have a plan in the works for that.  I will continue to work with PBN to help others find success in their businesses.

Is there anything you would like to add that we may have missed?

Time for a shameless plug.  You can find my products at CharissasCauldron.com and our flea market at KitsFlea.com.   If any of your readers want to connect with me feel free to friend me on Facebook.  I usually have a tab up when I’m working in case anyone needs assistance.

Secrets of High Priestess Kathie

There are people who are magick users, who find their spell work only through the pages of a book, and they can be competent in one offs. There are those who study the traditions and spirits of magick who create a space in the fabric of reality that allows them to change and bend reality to their wills after a fashion. They are successful to varying degrees, and are worthy of respect. But today, we are going to talk with a woman whose very flesh, fire, and spiritual bloodline is magick. Today, we are going to interview the Priestess of Secrets of Conjure Coven.

High Priestess Kathie, used with Permission
High Priestess Kathie, used with Permission

For those of our readers who may not know you, who is High Priestess Kathie?

I would like people to know that I come from a long line of spiritualist and spiritual people in my family.
I have done readings, been a lending ear to family and friends since I can remember. Professionally, I started doing readings almost 15 years ago(time flies) and I started doing spells and hoodoo around that same time professionally as well. Before that it was just for myself or a friend.

Where does your spark, your passion for magick have as its source?

I would say that it comes from a sense of me knowing that magic has been practiced in my family. It’s in my bloodline, even though some of them may not call it magic, or called it that back then. I remember my grandmother would call it power but to me its the same thing.

Was there a pivotal experience in your life that led you to this path?

Well I was raised up in this path so I saw a lot growing up as a child. But I will say that I started working with the dark arts, or black magic, more when I was attacked by an aunt that was in the church and I had to protect myself from her.

How long have you studied?

I would say really all my life. My grandmother taught me how to protect myself and how to help heal people and my voice is a tool in aiding that.

I can remember being a teenager even and getting occult books, thirsty for knowledge because I knew there was so much more than what I was being taught, being raised up in the bible belt a lot of hidden from me as well.

 

Who would you say have been your most helpful influences?

My grandmother was the most helpful in my life hands down! Rest her memory. My mother and father were supportive of me, but my mother didn’t want me to do this. She wanted a different life for me.
What folks have been there along the way as you grew as a practitioner?

I would say now as an adult my partner he is very supportive of me, friends and a couple of family members
also my brother and sister witches in my coven. The Secrets of Conjure Coven, my spiritual family, is amazing!

Secrets of Conjure Coven
Secrets of Conjure Coven

How would you define your style of magick when compared to what many are publicly teaching today?

I would say my style of magic or practicing is “non conventional” for sure. Definitely unorthodox in many ways lol.  I am known to be very controversial in my practice.

Do you feel there is a disconnect with traditional teachings and skill development when compared to the older generations? Or do you feel that since times have changed, the magicks have changed as well?

I really do feel that there is, and that is because more people are starting to practice magic, hoodoo, voodoo, Santeria, witchcraft than ever before and because of that you have people that did not have the “traditional” teachings from family and certain traditions that was passed down. So you will find a lot of spiritualist and spiritual people combining practices or making it their own way.

You are known to be a leader, not a follower, why do you think that is?

I believe it’s a combination of things. For one, I believe my title has a lot to do with it. Being a High Priestess and also because of my age.

I am a “seasoned witch” and getting ready to get into my Crone years soon and with that comes a lot of experience in life and dealing with clients, other witches who are priests and priestesses, and people in general. I feel the younger people look up  to me because of the wisdom bestowed upon me from living life.

Do you feel that it is tied in with your identity as a spiritual person?

Yes, because all I have ever been around in my life are women and men who were leaders. Most of the women in my family always had their own business, I had a great-aunt that ran a homeless shelter, she had a radio show, and had a street named after her. Then of course my grandmother was a minister, healer, and reader in her community.

They wouldn’t call it readings back then but they would come to her to get a “word from God” which people came from everywhere around the world for her help. So with me being her grand-daughter and her taking me under her wing this is the only way I know how to be. My mother was also a dancer, musician and entrepreneur.

What are your thoughts about the Black Witch Convention happening in October?

I think it’s awesome to have and that Black witches can come together and do something positive. I am in full support of it. I believe it will be a success.

Do you think that gatherings such as that one might be something you might be hosting as your practice grows?

I think that is possible but it’s not anything I have on my agenda anytime soon. But I do fully support those that do it.

When it comes to community, do you feel that we are losing the ability to be supportive of each other without competition?

Yes, some things do need to change and go back to the old ways I suppose. I can say that it is extremely competitive and I have not had a lot of positive experiences with other spiritualist in the business. Insecurities and people just aren’t friendly like they once were and really want to help others and sadly I see this in the African-American spiritualist community. It’s more cut throat. A lot of men don’t have respect for the women and visa versa. It’s become more about business and getting money it seems like, instead of being civilized.

How do you teach and learn from your peers when it comes to dealing with common issues?

Well, for an example I handle social media like I do in real life. I ask questions and also allow people to voice their opinions or contribute. As long as there is no line drawn with being disrespectful. I am open to all sorts of feedback and teach that to others so that they can either improve or add to their own lives.

You are a studious and creative person, how does this come through in your works?

I truly believe that this motivates me to give it all I got and to pay attention to details. I have always been creative and strive to do the very best I can. I was taught to be that way and I believe it shows in my workings. Especially in my readings.

Has there ever been a time when you just relied on the book?

I would say there was a period where I just relied on book instructions for spellwork and beliefs, but it was only for a short time cause I love to think outside the box. That is why I practice more than just hoodoo.

What do you feel is the most important thing about walking the path you walk?

I would say it’s very important to be true to yourself. I listen to people and decide if I want to really apply what they say to my life and if it really would benefit me. For example, I had a few Haitian voodoo people that didn’t like the fact that I worked with Damballah and my offerings I gave. I knew the truth is that it was because I was not initiated. I don’t feel that its in me or in my path at the moment to be consecrated or initiated into a religion.

Is it for everyone?

No, this walk or path is not for everyone. Some people are just to afraid or they have been so brainwashed by western religions(especially Christianity) that they shouldn’t be practicing because they have to much fear, doubt and worried about it backfiring on them.

If you had to speak to a younger you about what to expect in this life, what would you say?

Don’t dwell off life’s rough stuff just know you will always have challenges but learn from your mistakes, don’t be so hard on yourself, and take care of you more. Your hard work will pay off over and over again.

What would you most like to see happen in your own life in the next 10 years in regards to your studies and business?

Oh, I am an information sponge! I love to read, study and share information even if its YouTube videos. I really want to take the time to get more into the Egyptian studies later on. I am just so busy that when I do that I want to devote time to seriously learning and taking some of the practices and adding it to my work.

I only see my business booming. I currently am getting ready to put out my own brand of oils. I have my graphic designer doing my labels as we speak. I will have available for the public, my own organically blended oils that can be used for spellwork, rootwork, spiritual baths and protection.

What kind of clientele would you say most represents your practice?

EVERY WALK OF LIFE. Every race, ethnicity, gender that you can think of. I do not discriminate against clients either. I welcome everyone.

And of these, are there any moments that you would like to share that stand out particularly strongly in your memory?

I remember when I first started doing readings professionally and there was a gentleman that came to me and he told me his name was “Vu Vo”, and of course I was like “Vu Vo who”? He kept telling me his name was Vi Vo not Vi Vo Who lolol. So anyway that let me know that this was my destiny cause I had people seeking me out from Vietnam and around the world on a regular basis.

Do you remember the first time you charged for services?

Yes! What was that like? I was excited the first time I got paid from someone that was not family or a friend was when I first started doing contract work with this online company called Kasamba. I think it’s still around. I just couldn’t believe that I actually got paid great money for doing a reading and giving advice
to someone I didn’t know. I just knew this was for me.

Looking back,would you have charged more?

First starting out, I wouldn’t have charged more, but I would say that I would have eventually started to do this for myself instead of contracting with different psychic companies like circle of stars, keen, bitwine etc. earlier and that would have allowed me to cut out the middle man and save money for me and my clients pockets.

Here we go, how do you feel about the misapplication of the Wiccan Rede to your craft ethics and beliefs?

I respect those who are Wiccan but that rede doesn’t apply to me of course. That is not my belief so when people tell me that it applies to me, I do not listen to that because people are going to want to believe what they want and this is my life to live.

There is a phrase going around, “get your Wicca out of my conjure”. How do you feel about that?

I can understand how the traditionalist feel about that. There are those that want to keep the old practices “strick” but if you really look at it, every house that practiced hoodoo back then did things differently. These days people practice more than one system of magic. I, myself, do hoodoo and witchcraft.  I actually also incorporate some of the voodoo elements into my workings. I find that works for me.  Does it resonate? No, I can honestly say that it doesn’t resonate with me.

What is the main thing that you think keeps people from growing as practitioners today?

Keeping an open mind, which is what I have been trying to do with my own self lately and really try to accept people as they practice. Everyone knows I am against Christianity in Hoodoo and when it comes to African religions but that is just my own opinion and it’s not to be forced on people. What works for one person may not work for the next and like I said, I don’t discriminate. Some of my clients are Christian, also Islamic.

If you could open a school tomorrow, what would be lesson number one?

Leave your fear behind you. If you are afraid of this path you do not need to get in it. You are not ready or it may not be for you.

How do people get in touch with you?

People can find me on Facebook. I would prefer it being through my fan page. Also they can message me at highpriestesskathie@yahoo.com or highpriestesskathie@gmail.com for now. I also will have a brand new website up and running by December of 2016.

Do you ever find that you also get clients through YouTube?

Yes! YouTube had opened another door for me. I do appreciate that. It still feels funny to me when people tell me that they are a fan of my videos or love to watch them. I appreciate that sooo much.

My YouTube channel is less that 3 months old right now and already have almost 600 subscribers. That may not mean a lot to some people but it means the world to me. I am so thankful for my people, supporters and my coven.

And what is the name of your channel, for those who do not know.

It is HighPriestess Kathie on YouTube.

If you were to choose a stone to represent you, what would it be and why?

Black Tourmaline and that is because I have a lot of them I have some on my altar. I use it for grounding me and protection from all enemies against me that are seen and unseen.

Is there anything that you would say that we may not have had an opportunity to talk about here?

Yes….

Something you would like folks to know about you?

I have heard that many people maybe intimidated by me or afraid to approach me because I do work with the dark arts. The thing is that I am approachable and will do the work that you hire me to do for you. I just ask for respect when you come to me and you will get it back in return.

I know I have somewhat of a controversial reputation online and that comes from having problems with people that are in the same business as me. I do not have issues with clients, it’s always someone from the spirituality business and we already talked about how we need to improve that as a community and believe it can be done.I made a video about it and bringing awareness to it will help for future readers, spellcasters, and rootworkers. Social media has a way of making people say things online that they would not dare say in person and that applies to everyone.

An In Depth Interview with Shetan Noir – Goddess, Witch, Belly Dancer, Author

 

SHETAN PROFILE JEEP Shetan Noir is a Michigan based award winning belly dancer and Pagan writer. She is an active member of the Great Lakes Witches Council and Motor City Belly Dance Show. She has written many books and is working on several new book projects. She also writes articles for various magazines and websites such as Circle magazine and examiner.com.

Please tell us how you got started on your spiritual journey.

There were too many things in the bible that didn’t make sense to me and I found I had intolerance for it. So I decided to go on my own path which led me to the path of the Pagan. I studied ceremonial magic but it is really complex compared to hoodoo and folk magic. The folk and the hoodoo magic really appealed to me with their simplicity and effectiveness, a candle to carve, herbs, intention and done. This really resonated with me so I embraced these systems.

At what age did you realize that you were a Witch?

At 16, my father’s mother came to me and let me know she had passed on. When my family came to give me the news, I shocked them by telling them she had died before they had a chance to tell me. Throughout my life, I have had dreams that let me know someone has passed. Once my phone rang and woke me up and I heard a message being left saying, “Tell your mom I will meet her at the cemetary for the burial.” When I went to tell my Mom, she said, “Oh that was my mother.”  Now my grandmother was already dead. Both me and my mother heard the phone ring and so did my dogs but there was no trace of the message on the answering machine. So at around 16 I realized that there is more to what we do than we are doing and that there are greater powers out there.  

Please tell us about your book, Intro to Hood magic: Modern Magic for the Urban Pagan.

About 5 years ago at Convocation,  a four day event where I have taught for many years. I had friends within my circle that kept coming up to me and asking about hood magic because they didn’t comprehend it. It wasn’t until the Friday before the event that I actually looked at my bio on the program and saw that instead of putting that I practice hoodoo, they put down that I practice and teach hood magic! So I was showing it to my friends not knowing what to do and my friend David Smith said to just own it and go with it. What’s funny is that I used to always wear a black hoodie and so people were wondering if when I pull my hood it’s a sign that I am casting against them. I decided that I would write a book and create a workshop on hood magic for the following year.

There are people who felt that the term “hood” means an inner city war zone type of place but this book encompasses what you have to work with in any type of neighborhood, from rural to inner city. Some people live in condos and apartments and want to know how to grow their own plants on their balcony or how to do a fire ceremony without a yard and a place to create a fire. I did catch quite a bit of flak for it when it first came out because of the assumed meaning of the term hood. I might be from the country but I have also experienced the mean streets of inner city Detroit and no matter where you live, you can use this book.

I like the sound of the chapter, “Making Your Own Luck”. Please tell us about that chapter.

This goes along with what the whole book Hood Magic stands for. It’s about using what you have to turn things towards your favor. When you are asking your Gods and Goddesses for what you want, it often boils down to your mental state. If you are coming from a place of gratitude, things come more quickly but if you come from a place of feeling low or inundated with bad luck, you might get something but what you get might not be in line with what you want. This can also happen if you are not being specific about what you want.

I have a great story to share about this. I had been doing a petition spell each week for good fortune and abundance and everything was going great. Then I was at a jazz festival doing tarot readings but it wasn’t going very well. Apparently psychic readings don’t go over very well at these types of events. One person looked at me and said, “You’re one of those spell casters, do something.” So I got up and took the $2 that I made in tips and went outside to give them to the people who would most benefit from the money while asking that it be returned to me tenfold. I saw some street performers and gave one of the dollars to them. Then I found a homeless man that I gave the other dollar to. As I was walking back down the street, there was a man there handing out sample containers of a well named brand of hummus. As I walked by, the man turned around and gave me a big box of hummus samples. It had like 500 small samples. Then a man who was handing out pita chip samples handed me a box of those samples to go with my hummus so I got the “abundance” I asked for but hummus was not exactly I had in mind and I was eating hummus and chips for months. The event had to end early due to the weather and I said, “Well, I didn’t make much money today but I have lots of hummus to eat”.

Please tell us about your book, The Other Side of the Coin: Spells to Enrich your Bank Account and Life (Volume 1).

I took quite a bit of time researching that one because everyone was coming out with prosperity books but their books weren’t doing any better than mine. So I decided to research prosperity magic through hoodoo. I found a wealth of information and tried to put as much into it as I could. It’s not just about hoodoo but contains information from various cultures all over the world. Each culture has its own group of deities and you can always find at least one or two of them that are dedicated to prosperity and happiness. I didn’t want to leave any out in order to show respect to all of them.

What is your favorite prosperity herb/stone combination?

I like pyrite and emeralds for stones. For herbs, I love to grow orange mint, cinnamon basil for its dual action. I also like St. Michael’s holy basil. If you plant it at the front door of your house it will ward off evil and promote prosperity. This year I have orange mint, apple mint, peppermint, white sage, hyssop, anise and lemon verbena.

Please tell us about your book, To Fight Fire with Fire: Protection Magic.

Here is a little secret about the book. I do a lot of paranormal ghost hunting and things like that. My friends and family know that so they will call me to get rid of the spirits that are partying in their homes. So To Fight Fire with Fire is about protection magic but also includes ways to get rid of entities. People don’t realize that when they buy things from antique and garage sales, these things can have spiritual attachments that can wreak havoc in the home. So if people are dealing with the paranormal, this is a great book to have.

What is your favorite herb and stone protection combination?

I’m a huge lover of mixing sea salt with red brick dust. I ground down the bricks myself. I like peppermint and hyssop for protection herbs. Anytime I have come from a Pagan event or have been dealing with people who have questionable intentions, I take a bath in these to clear the gunk off of me. I also love magnetic hematite. I carry them in my jeep and keep them on me if I am going to places where people may be casting against each other. Magnetic hematite will neutralize bad energy.

Please tell us about your book, Sticks and Stones: A Book of Curious Spells and Unique Information.

This was my first leap into self-publishing. I took the things that I have learned throughout my life and put it in one book. It’s more about folk magic and hoodoo and is a good starting book for people who just want to see how it works and what to work with. A candle, an herb, an intention, a petition or psalm and sending it out into the world for fulfillment.

What’s your favorite spell in that book?

My favorite spell is the bloodhound spell. Many people do return to sender spells but the only problem with that is that unless you add that you want it made known who has cast against them then unless the target is very public about their woes, you’ll never know if it worked. When a bloodhound gets on a trail, they make all kinds of sounds. They have one of the loudest bays that you will ever hear and love the sound of their own voice so they are vocal the whole time. That’s what the bloodhound spell basically does. No matter how much this person tries to hide what they did, there is something coming along behind them making a ruckus. This way there is no way they can hide it. I come from a long history of working with dogs and bloodhounds are loud, they work with law enforcement and are almost impossible to escape.

SHETAN BELLY DANCE As an amateur belly dancer, I want to hear about your book, Sequins+Hot glue gun=Belly Dance Costumes (Volume 1).

I’ve been belly dancing for over 15 years and the hard thing for us plus size dancers is the costuming, finding ones that fit us well and looks nice on us. I was doing tons of performing and started performing with a variety and burlesque group and one of the dancers was showing the other girls how to make pasties. So I was watching and I was thinking that I can use that same concept to make my own appliques and I could make my own costumes. I was able to create pretty much any kind of outfit I wanted as well as in any color. They all fit really nice and I am only limited by my imagination when creating them.

Does it help large breasted women to create their own dance bras using the bras they already have?

Yes, you can find a bra that works for you and shows your boobage at its best to use. I like the Lane Bryant CACIQUE line. When they have the buy 2 get one free, I would save up my pennies to get them or you can get them from the clearance wrack to save more money. You want a firm cup with underwire to support you. Then you pick the color and shape of the appliques and create your bra. The book has templates that you can copy and cut out. Just be sure to find a bra that supports and enhances you. Naturally how much you can apply depends on the size of the bra. You can fit a lot more on larger bras than smaller ones.

I am working on an online course through Craft U and once it’s done, I will post it on social media. I am going to show how to create an entire belly dance costume including pointing out what kind of skirt enhances your figure, how to make cover ups from just a tee-shirt, etc. It’s a step by step course that will help you to create a complete costume custom made for you. There will also be videos on how to make Shisha mirrors and hip medallions which will be very helpful for people who have never done embroidery. Teaching this through video will be much more helpful to give people a visual to follow step by step.

You also recently went through a personal tragedy at the hands of a drunk driver. Please tell us about that.

It was actually about a year ago. My Mom and I were on our way to get something to eat and go to the store in my Jeep Wrangler. We were coming to the end of the road and were about 20 feet from the stop sign. A Jeep Grand Cherokee came flying around the corner and slid in the gravel right into my car, knocking it 4 feet to the side. I knew he wanted to run and I told him I would chase him down if he did. I had my Mom call my Dad who was just down the road and the police. I could smell the alcohol on his breath as he made up all kinds of excuses. He offered to just give me his phone number and let his friends fix the fender but I refused because I knew there was more damage than just the fender. My father came and we both blocked him in so he couldn’t leave the scene. He gave us a fake phone number which I told him was not going to work so I took a picture of his license plate. My Dad informed him that the police had been called. As soon as he heard that, he jumped back into his truck and drove over the embankment to get away. The police arrived a few minutes later and recognized the description that I gave of him. Apparently this same man had done this 3 times previously and the police knew where he lived so they had a car waiting for him when he got home. He blew twice the legal limit when they gave him the breathalyzer and the worse part was he had no license and no insurance.

What made me even angrier is that this accident caused me to have a miscarriage. When we went to court, his wife who was pregnant was there which made the blow even worse. He ruined my vehicle and took something that was irreplaceable to me, especially now that I am in my forties. It’s been a huge struggle and a yearlong process trying to keep tabs on him. The court ordered him to pay me $3800 just to make the repairs and he didn’t pay it. He didn’t show to his parole meetings and had a bench warrant placed against him. I knew the trailer park that he lived in and had to do my own investigative work to see when he was there and called the police to go pick him up when he was. He went to jail for 30 days and was ordered again to pay me by a certain date which of course he didn’t do. So they issued another bench warrant but he fled the state. When I told the police they said there was nothing they can do until he comes back into our state. Drunk driving should be considered to more of a huge offense than it is and they really let people slide on it. This man has done this repeatedly and next time he may kill someone. Now I have to do all of my own detective work to seek justice.

What would you like to see happen to this man?

I would like for him to pay me what he owes and also to pay restitution to everyone he has done this too. I want to see him punished. He should sit in jail and have the knowledge that he cost someone the life of a loved one eat away at him for the rest of his time on earth.

Aside from the physical and emotional trauma, how has this impacted you financially?

My medical bills were taken care of through my health insurance but my jeep is still damaged. The windshield is cracked thanks to being showered with gravel, broke my lights, there’s structural damage to my tire that could cause a blow-out. The tire alone was $400. The fender is a $1500-2000 part. He also damaged the gear assembly box because of the way his vehicle pushed mine sideways. He made the decision to drink and drive without a license or insurance but he had enough money to move his family out of state and fix the damages to his own vehicle and not pay me a cent.

He lived in the same trailer park as my cousin and aunt and I went to visit them. As I came out, I caught his wife letting the air out of the tires of my jeep. I confronted her and she started screaming obscenities at me and took off. I had to file a police report against her too. Thankfully I had witnesses because she tried to file a report against me saying I was harassing her.

You’re a travel writer, aren’t you?

Yes, that’s one of the reasons why I have my fingers crossed for my jeep until I can get the money to repair it so I can keep doing what I love which is being a travel writer. I also am working on books on cryptozoology and the paranormal as well as my Pagan series of books.

I would really love to go to this convention that’s 3-5 hours away but I have to make sure that at least somebody I know will be home in case my car breaks down. It makes it hard because you want to be mobile and get your job done and earn your income but now I have to worry if my jeep can make it there and back or if I have to cry myself to sleep about it.

I understand that you have contributed to many charity events, would you please tell us about them?

One of my biggest things I did was when I was running belly dance shows within the local communities was I would pay it forward by giving local new dancers a chance to have stage time. We did monthly shows and we would accept donations each month for different charities. We did this for three years under the name Motor City Belly Dance. We donated to the Humane Society, Make a Wish, Toys for Tots and other local charities. We also donated to Space Walk which is for the homeless and did shows to raise money for both animal and human based charities.

Since you have helped so many with the knowledge you share in your books and charitable contributions, how can others now help you through this crisis?

I do have a crowd funding site set up through YOUCARING that I created with the hope of receiving enough donations to fix my car so I can continue to move forward despite what has happened to me.  I really do need to have my jeep repaired and am reaching out for help to cover the considerable cost to fix it. Anyone who wants to make a donation can do it by clicking here:  

Despite what happened to you, you have exhibited inspiring strength. Please tell us how you stay so strong?

I try to keep that positive outlook on life because it’s very hard to go to that dark, negative place and only dark and negative comes back to you when you do. I study the law of attraction and try to keep my ranting and ravings to a close circle of friends who know what I am going through. I attribute my strength mostly to my belief system and knowing how strong my parents are. My Mom is the bear curator for the North American Bear Center and works with live bears three times her size and my Dad is the main caregiver for my younger brother who has a head injury. Just seeing how they deal with life and how strong they are really propels me forward.

What final words would you like to share with our audience?

If you want to get to know me better, FaceBook is great and you can also find me on twitter. My books are available to purchase on Amazon. I am also working on a couple of different sites including a podcast and blog on the paranormal called Into the Liminal Abyss. Liminal means between spaces where you find most paranormal activities and the abyss is this vastness where everything comes from.  I am hoping to launch them in October. I am also working on a book project that documents the stories and legends of the water monsters in the Great Lakes. There are so many different stories surrounding them. Anyone who has any stories they would like to share, please contact me. I’m going to spotlight each of the Great Lakes, their depths and what’s currently living them. I am going to include the Native American tribes of the Great Lake’s stories of water monsters and spirits and document any sightings of these creatures. One in particular is a snake being with a moose head.  I’m going to go on a mission to talk to park rangers to see if moose actually swim in the Great Lakes. They may be swimming from one of the small islands to Lake Superior. I’m also documenting the aquatic fossil records of the Great Lakes to see what actually lived in them millions of years ago and examine the possibility that some of these creatures still exist. So I’ve got quite the interesting summer coming up and I’m really looking forward to it.  

To contact Shetan to teach workshops and seminars or learn more, you can contact her through FaceBook.

Please visit her Amazon page to purchase her books.

Don’t forget to check out her blogs, Fingers in the Pie,  and Into the Liminal Abyss

You can also follow her on Twitter.

 

 

Terence P. Ward, one of our top Pagan journalists

Your friendly neighborhood Pagan inkslinger was favored with an interview of Terence P Ward, Assistant Editor at The Wild Hunt.  You know, that modest blog that turned into a premiere online publication and news agency that covers the Pagan world right now?  So join in this honor of speaking with this true pioneer for Pagan journalists.

 

Terence P Ward, used with permission
Terence P Ward, Assistant Editor at The Wild Hunt

 

So, even though there is a strong doubt that the readers here would not know who you are, tell us about who you are.

I doubt there’s so much doubt.  I meet people all the time who have never heard to The Wild Hunt, the premier site for Pagan news.  I am the assistant editor there, and contribute at least one news story myself each week.

You are a writer, but that can mean a lot of things. What does that mean in your life when it comes to your path of actualization?

I get excited whenever I read fiction that moves me, and imagine myself creating like that, but it’s never quite turned out that way.  Being a writer doesn’t always mean having something to say, and for me that means I have the opportunity to help others who don’t write so well share their stories.

Since I started writing news in 2010, I’ve never written more and I’ve never been happier with my work.

So many people see journalist, writer, and Pagan, but you are specifically a polytheist. When you are approaching issues and stories, what part does this other facet to your life and belief window play in how you frame your works?

To be clear, I’m the kind of polytheist that relates to the gods as individual beings, separate from each other and from myself.  We’re called hard polytheists, or devotional polytheists, or in some circles, those curmudgeons muttering in the corner.  I am quite grounded in that world view.  On the other hand, Hellenic polytheism like mine warns against hubris, arrogance that leads to the belief that we are better than the gods.  It would be hubris for me to presume that my understanding of the gods is the whole story.

Many, many Pagans use language that makes this error, whether they believe all gods are one god, there are no gods, the gods care what we think or they don’t; the truth is, none of us have the full picture.  Since my viewpoint is a minority in our minority religious community, I use it as a reminder to work for more inclusive language in my reporting.

When you cover an assignment, do you sometimes find a bias in the communities toward soft polytheistic groups vs. true poly?

Heck, even calling them “true poly” is a bias, but not the most predominant one.  Indeed, as I noted in the previous question, most people couch their opinions in language which assumes others agree with them.  It’s ironic, since we’ve probably all faced that with some Christians, and railing against that kind of privilege is not at all uncommon.  When I’m working, I try to place those quotes in the broader context as best I can.

Bluestar Tam God's love
Bluestar Tam
God’s love

Pagan, and Interfaith, awareness and activism stories seem to be something running through your work. W

So much of the modern Pagan movement has been about just letting us worship who and how we wish, but that’s definitely changing.  More activists, more people engaged in interfaith work, and more pushes for Pagan infrastructure are all evidence that this movement is maturing.  These have all been part of Paganism as long as it has had a modern identity, and they have been resisted by others in the community for just as long.

Andras Corban-Arthen was engaging in interfaith work in the 1970s, and Selena Fox was trying to secure land for Circle Sanctuary not long after.  Some people feel that Paganism will lose its counterculture roots if these things happen, but the emergence of strong activist voices suggests otherwise.  Pagan identity is transforming right before our eyes, and it’s impossible to say what it will look like on the other side.

What part do you believe those of nontraditional religions can play on the world stage of events right now that will create a positive impact? How can we take our seat at the table?

I’m going to borrow from the views of Andras Corban-Arthen, founder of Earthspirit Community, because his words resonate with me.  Pagans are leaders in environmental activism, in the rights of women, and in acceptance of diverse sexual orientations and gender identities.  Those are all important viewpoints to share.  I also see us as particularly good at blending scientific and mystical perspectives, and recognizing that they are complementary, not competing.  We take our seat at the table by not hiding who we are, and not letting others control the messages of Paganism.

What roles do writers play in this?

Writing endures.  It generally lacks the intonation and nonverbal cues we rely upon for communication, but it lasts far longer than conversation, and spreads further.  By putting forth our beliefs and practices in writing, we help shape history.

Do you feel a unique responsibility as a Pagan journalist?

Journalists like myself must serve as the mouthpieces of our community.  I would love for other Pagan journalists to join The Wild Hunt or otherwise use their skills to tell Pagan stories.

As a journalist, it’s my job to “comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable,” in the words of Finley Peter Dunne.

That requires a dispassionate perspective, but dispassionate does not mean uninformed.  Reporters find themselves having to become an expert in a new subject in a very short time, and coverage of Pagan news in mainstream media sources shows that it doesn’t always work well.  Because I’m Pagan, I have a baseline knowledge which makes that learning curve a little less steep, and the end product a bit more accurate.

Digitized by the Gruss Lipper Digital Laboratory at the Center for Jewish History - www.cjh.org Young men and women working on writing for publications at Camp Wel-Met, 1948 Photographer: Heinz H. Weissenstein
Photographer: Heinz H. Weissenstein

What role do you think that The Wild Hunt has played in the consciousness of cyber society?

We are working to make the wider world take our community seriously.  That’s only possible because we stand on the shoulders of giants, the pioneers who took the first bold steps into being publicly Pagan and working out how to educate the world about us.  We couldn’t exist without that work, and it is our responsibility to build upon it.

What ways would you like to see writers and media professionals expand the visibility of our issues? What is the next step?

The Wild Hunt started as a blog, updated daily for ten years by its tireless founder, Jason Pitzl-Waters.  It is now being transformed into a full-fledged news agency.  In order for that to continue, we need more Pagans to become comfortable with speaking to reporters, skilled at recognizing news stories, and fluent in articulating their beliefs and practices.  The more Pagans emerge from the shadows, the more those of us who work in news can focus that light through a lens of accuracy and truth.

If you could choose a Delphic Maxim that you felt most accurately defined the body of your works, what would it be?

 

If you are a stranger, act like one.  I strive never to assume I know more than I do, and to actually listen to my subjects rather than write the story before they’re finished telling it.  I think of myself as a stranger visiting their homes for the first time.

For those who would love to follow your writings, where can they find them?

My news stories can be found at wildhunt.org.  I also occasionally post personal musings at truepaganwarrior.com, which also has a presence on Facebook and Tumblr.

Is there anything you would like to tell us that we may not have covered up to this point?

My definition of Paganism is inclusive, but not blindly so.  While I see similarities in groups such as Native Americans and practitioners of Shinto, I try not to force a label upon them that they would reject.  Polytheists and Heathens sometimes, but not always, use Pagan to describe themselves, but not always.  My way to honor that is to refer to these groups as being “in the shadow of the Pagan umbrella,” rather than under it; it’s an attempt to recognize that while some may see them as Pagan (or close enough), that they don’t always agree.  There are similarities enough to pay attention to what they’re doing, and real overlap, but use of the term “Pagan” is as amorphous as definitions of the word itself.

Pagan Journalists, who could have seen these great days come to pass when, back in the 50’s, Paganism came out of the shadows and into public society?  The faces of the new times are here, and they are writing our stories and keeping watch for us.  We thank you, Terence, for taking up the pen and marking the records.  For now there are scribes who exist among this generation of new Pagans, who report and challenge us, writing their stories from the spaces just out of the corner of our eyes.