Photo Post – Moon & Sea

Although I haven’t yet written about it, my family, consisting of myself, my husband/magical partner, and my boyfriend, recently moved ourselves, and the seat of Tashrisketlin to the seacoast of Southern Maine.

When we first moved up to Maine more than two years ago, my Lady told me that I had Work to do with the sea. However, we proved unable to find a place to live near there. This was ok though, since it was still during our three years of enforced idleness, more on that in a later post.

But now, with our idleness at an end, an opportunity to move to less than a half mile from a beautiful beach just happened to crop up, and here we are.

It’s going to be a long and hopefully exciting road of learning and exploring as we work out what living by the sea will mean for us, both magically and spiritually. That too, will be a subject of posts to come. One thing we already know, is that as the sea has become a fixture in our Work and energy, so has the Moon has become a major force in our lives. After all, the interplay between the moon and sea creates the ebbs and flows that suffuse the power underlying the land all around us.

I don’t paint or draw, but I’m a rather skilled photographer and have been exploring photography as a tool for spiritual expression. The fabulous Elizabeth from Twilight & Fire was visiting last week and convinced me to take my camera gear down to the beach for the rising of the Harvest Moon, and the following photos were the result.

So hail the dance of Sea and Moon, who together form one of the great engines that drive our world.

(Photos below the fold, click to enlarge)

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The Work Can Get In Its Own Way

You’ll no doubt have noticed that there’s been a break in posts here on Gods’ Mouths 2.0. There are two reasons for that. First and foremost, we (Alex & Winter) it turns out are not as good at using the “schedule” feature here on WordPress as we’d thought! GM2 has gotten some great submissions over the last little while and we thought we’d gotten them set to publish automatically… but we didn’t.

Sorry about that.

“But wait Alex/Winter, you guys didn’t notice! WTF?” you may be saying, and your frustration would be completely understandable.

No, we didn’t notice. Which brings us to the topic of Work.

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A Day In The Life – Costel Hildr

Costel Hildr of The Infinte Battle presents a Day In Their Life 

I thought I’d transcribe what I do in a typical day. I contemplated on writing about Saturdays/Laugardag or about Wednesday, but those are strange days. So:

I often wake up around noon to 3pm.

I usually roll around in bed, angry at myself for having slept later than I meant to, but then also grumbling because if I didn’t sleep, I would be massively tired. No real win in this situation. I always need a lot of sleep and I can barely fall asleep before sunrise. Something about it. I just need to watch the sunrise in the morning.

I tell myself to get up out of bed.

Then I grumble and curl under the covers pretending the world doesn’t exist for a moment.

I usually text my mate, we Role Play (RP). I play as, primarily, Tony Stark, or whoever needs to be in the RP: including Odin, Fenrir, and others; my mate RPs as Loki. It’s a Marvel MCU and for some reason my fulltrui, actual “real” Loki loves that I do this. We introduced a lot about gods, theology, and things like ways to make offerings to gods. It’s a form of writing and Loki prefers that I make art. In fact, ’13’s Lokablot, He said: Make art for me. In a lot of ways, I consider this art. It’s a form of impromptu art. Planned, but not too planned. We do this for about an hour. Then I look at the time and get a little more angry at myself for wasting time.

I get up and go to my laptop and waste time on Tumblr, Twitter, FB, emails, and checking blogs for an hour. Then realize I’ve still not done anything and most of the day has been wasted.

I angrily make tea and eat some yogurt.

Then I flit around, unsure of what to do.

I walk by my public altar for Loki and clean things up.

Then I go back to my laptop and usually find a prompt for an article. I then write for several hours—for my blog, in general.

Annoyed that I spent the entire day inside at my computer, I go out on to the balcony and read. I have some books that Loki and Hel and others think would be beneficial for me to read. Right now as I type, I’m reading Duel with the Devil, which is about the first sensational murder in the USA.

I pass out. I also fall asleep when I read.

Groggy, I get up.

I feel like an idiot and a failure. Whatever happened to, oh I don’t know, doing good and awesome things for my gods? What about helping restore the shitty parts of the city or helping prisoners or the homeless and poor or children or educating people? Failure. That’s what I am. I just passed out on my sheepskin rug and twiddled my thumbs on the internet. Dammit.

I go back to my laptop and find a documentary or TV show or movie to watch. I knit while watching. (Right now, I’m making a “flame hair” hat which is red, orange, and another orange-color and is in the pattern to make it look like fire.)

Night falls and I pour water on a rock. Don’t ask me why, the landvaettir just like it. They want it at sunrise and sunset and it has to do with the sun/Sunna and moon/Mani, and I don’t know.

I check my ancestral altar and change the water and fiddle with things on it.

I thank the apartment-dwelling vaettir.

I make dinner and pick out the alcohol for the night (I like my variations). I place dinner (food and drink, in smaller portions than myself; I’m really strapped for cash and I barely have enough to give to him as well) on my personal altar for Loki and sit down on my bed, which is right next His altar because I don’t have room for a table and chair for me. I light some candles and/or incense.

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On Not Keeping Up With the “Ravens”

I do not own a drum.

Ok, that’s not really a fair statement, I actually own two very nice drums, they just don’t do me any good. Part of my plethora of neurological issues is an automaticity and fine-motor control delay that makes it impossible for me to maintain a drum beat. I start off fine, but the processing/control-delay means that each strike of the drumhead takes place little bit later than it should, sending me out of rhythm within a short time.

For most people, not being able to use a drum would be a tiny footnote in life. However, for someone who publicly identifies as a shaman (or more properly, a shaman-magician) and spirit worker, not using a drum is seen by many an impediment not unlike like an accountant who’s bad at math.

Of course, the drum issue is just one of a raft of ways in which my Work differs from the common archetype of what it looks like to be a shaman, spirit worker, or magician.

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Announcing Gods’ Mouths 2.0 – A New Collaborative Pagan Blog

Gods’ Mouths 2.0
Following our own paths… together


We are extremely excited to announce a new collaborative alternative spirituality, paganism and spiritworking blog project with the return and reboot of “Gods’ Mouths.”

The new managing editors, Alex Bettencourt of Rock of Eye, and Wintersong Tashlin of Notes From A Barking Shaman, intend to present content from contributors with a broad diversity of relationships to spirituality, faith, gods, spirits and magic.

Posts on Gods’ Mouths 2.0 will explore the complexities of our lived experiences as spiritual and/or magical beings in ways that challenge us as readers to broaden and question our own understandings faith and practice. But through it all, God’s Mouths’ writers and editors will strive to ensure that our content does not pass judgement on people whose beliefs (or lack thereof) differ from our own, or seeks to non-consensually impose a fundamentalist worldview on anyone.

In order to best nurture an environment where that can succeed, Gods’ Mouths 2.0 is guided by one unyielding principle: there are many ways to approach, experience, and interact with the Divine and the Otherworld(s).

This means that while some of us come from traditions with strict rules and beliefs, no posts will be allowed that would seek to impose those rules and beliefs on anyone else.

Moreover, the relaunched Gods’ Mouths 2.0 rejects a hierarchical view of spirituality that says only high priests/priestesses, shamans, spiritworkers, godspouses, and adepts are entitled to have their voices heard on spiritual and magical topics. The experiences of new journeyers, solitary practitioners, lay people, mystics, and many others deserve to have their voices woven into the broader tapestry of our community.

We look forward to seeing where this new journey leads, and hope you’ll join us, be it as a contributor or a regular reader.

Alex Bettencourt & Wintersong Tashlin
Managing Editors
Gods’ Mouths 2.0

Honor Through Absence

by Wintersong Tashlin

Note: This essay only speaks to my personal experiences as a shaman and spirit worker. It is not intended as criticism, or a statement on other people who have or have not chosen to break with their milk religions.

I don’t have any ancestors.

That sentence is difficult to write, and I know the very idea is anathema to many people’s beliefs and practices. Yet for me it is the truth. And a hard truth it is, particularly as a spirit worker and a shaman who works with the honored Dead.

It goes without saying that I have parents, and grandparents, and so on. So the question arises of how can I not have ancestors? To answer that question, I have to tell you a bit about who I am, and more importantly, where I come from.

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