Wednesday, January 18, 2006

The Good Neighbor

The neighbors stare at me. I’m a practicing witch and the neighbors know this, because I have never made any attempt at hiding it, any secret of the life I lead, but on the contrary calmly explained it every time I’ve been asked, treating my craft as a completely ordinary thing, as natural as any craft, any way of life. Which it is. At least it would have been in a society approaching sane.

I work with herbs, a healer in my own right, using the ingredients nature gives me, without resorting to poison and unnatural compounds. I light fires in the night and dance naked around the seething and scorching flames.

Rumors are abundant. I sacrifice chickens when no one is watching. The children are restless and I am to blame.

I am to blame for everything, from disease to a boring life, for all the poxes mankind has visited upon themselves.

I’m alien to them to them, a curiosity, exotic, worrisome and dangerous. My confidence in self, my ability to stand out from the crowd, to seek what is unknown and different, is a threat to the Big Lie they have created to sustain their mundane lives.

So they stare, and Hunger for what they don’t dare grab, and their hunger turns sour, turns to fear, resentment and hatred. They see a person free as a bird, see it possess what they have lost, and they want to cage it, and if they can’t cage it, destroy it. Their distorted hunger is a horrible thing. The good neighbors stare at the witch with envious eyes.

At best they want to manage and tame us. At worst they want to burn us at the stake… and they will... unless we stop them.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

The Path

I’m Maxine. I am what others may call an eclectic witch. That means I follow my own path, not that of others or any other established, fixed path. The Path is Mist and Shadow, and that is also how it should be. Every witch, or any human being for that matter, should experience life and magick their own way, not conform to any preconceived tradition.

I discovered that I was a witch about fifteen years ago. I didn’t become a witch then. I have always been one. But I realized beyond doubt who I was that night. I had sought for years, for a way to change my life. It was Midsummer Night’s Eve in 1991, when I attended an unofficial, very unofficial celebration of life in London’s Hyde Park. We shared bodies and minds, and everything possible, the hundred or so of us, and my life, like that of many others present, was irrevocably changed.

Today’s world, the official part of it, is so indifferent, superficial, in all ways that counts. It’s an illusion, a mirage, in most meanings of the words, not in the sense that it doesn’t exist, but in its significance. Once you’ve learned to reject today’s world’s glitter, buzzwords like money and success, a much bigger world reveals itself to you. We opened up that night in Hyde Park, opened up to the world, to the vast Universe, its endless variety and depth.

I watch you sit there, yes, you, sit there in your tiny house, never going outside, hardly ever being aware of other houses, and certainly not those outside your tiny cluster of reality. You deny the Universe, deny yourself. Even when people show you the world beyond your limited understanding, you see merely the gray neighborhood of your house, because you are colorblind, and the slightest glimpse of colors scares you.

I am open. I reject the narrow chinks of your cavern. I am Maxine. I am a witch. I am the world.