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Author Topic: Pagan 101  (Read 2746 times)

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DragonsFriend

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Pagan 101
« on: September 29, 2015, 06:34:32 PM »

I am wondering how many here have taken a Paganism or Wicca 101 class and what you learned from it.

I am going to be putting on such a class in the near future that will contain the "standard" 101 topics of Etiquette, Ethics, Centering and Grounding, Theories of Magik, Introduction to Energy, Introduction to Sacred Space, Magikal Names, and the Isaac Bonewits Cult Evaluation framework.
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earthmuffin

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2015, 10:31:15 PM »

I never had a class but got my 101 from reading books. I think your topics sound good-- probably a lot broader than I got into with my own studying. Do you touch on psychic defense at all under any of the topic headings? I found I was lacking there- also in the Intro to energy which I find difficult to grasp from the limited info in Wicca books I have read. Taking Tai Chi was much more helpful for me in that department and quizzing the elders on this forum.
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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2015, 11:25:25 AM »


I have taught a number of such classes, including as a consulting chaplain in five prisons.

peace,
ES
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2015, 12:04:59 PM »

I never had a class but got my 101 from reading books. I think your topics sound good-- probably a lot broader than I got into with my own studying. Do you touch on psychic defense at all under any of the topic headings? I found I was lacking there- also in the Intro to energy which I find difficult to grasp from the limited info in Wicca books I have read. Taking Tai Chi was much more helpful for me in that department and quizzing the elders on this forum.

In the introduction to energy I teach basic shielding and when it should be used. I should point out that most "psychic" attacks are "internal". Insecurities and guilt are much more common than attacks by others. this doesn't mean it doesn't happen, only that it is rare.
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vordan

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2015, 05:53:11 AM »

I had an eclectic Wiccan coven for 12 years, we stressed ethics, the way to behave in a circle, the wheel of the year briefly, and the quarters to those starting. We tended to have participation as a big part of the learning process, I would take time to explain what we were doing to new people as we did them. The previous High Priest liked the ceremony more and the formal structure of classes,  people learn by doing.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2015, 06:03:58 PM by vordan »
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Tinevisce

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2015, 11:16:27 AM »

I've never had the opportunity to take formal classes for energy work/witchcraft, and I wouldn't have had the resources (money, transportation, etc) for it even if classes were offered. That, and the fact that most local practitioners here would come from left hand paths which I wouldn't want to get involved in at this juncture in my life, pretty much ensures that almost all of my studies are undertaken alone with help from books and the wonderful people here. :)

That said- and why do I keep saying that so much- I do know what topics I'd love to learn about if I ever took a Wicca 101 class:

a) Along with the basic grounding and centering skills, learning exactly why they're so important makes sense to me. That is to say, what are the consequences of not having a proper foundation with these skills later on in someone's spiritual path.

b) Perception of energy and developing those senses. On paper, different kinds of energies "feel" different to us...but it becomes quite difficult sometimes to separate when the way something makes us feel has its source inside us or is a valid energetic perception.

c) Like EM said, basic shielding skills. More than that, a walk-through of how likely/unlikely psychic attacks are.

All of those points seem to be covered in your class, so looks like something I'd love to join :D
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2015, 01:37:45 PM »

Long ago I tried to put on classes through E-mail or on a site but it is difficult and much more time consuming to do classes in that way. I charge very little for my open classes and that is usually just for the handouts or materials.

Basic centering and grounding keeps you from being drained when using energy as it connects you to the Earth energy to replenish what you use. It also serves to keep you in a spiritual mind-frame so it is easier to drop the physical and emotional garbage when working with energy.
Psychic attacks are rare. A lot more rare than our own subconscious beatings. Shielding wont have any effect on those issues. We use shielding to keep unpleasant energies under control more than as a means to avoid attacks. We all know at least one person whose energy is just not in tune with our own. They might be wonderful people or a little troubled but every time we are around them we feel like we need to bathe or slap them. A shield is a way to be able to interact with those people without their energy signature interfering with us. NOTE: There are likely folks who feel the same way about your energy too. A "Bug Zapper" shield is great for that situation.
If you raise a shield because you are feeling uncomfortable and it is ineffective it is time time to look in a mirror and see what is going on inside.
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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2015, 06:04:38 PM »

Quote
If you raise a shield because you are feeling uncomfortable and it is ineffective it is time time to look in a mirror and see what is going on inside.

So true! As a novice though, I find it difficult to ascertain if a shield or similar energetic construct is ineffectual because of improper construction or because it can't block something that's coming from the inside :)
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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2015, 07:46:28 PM »

Quote
If you raise a shield because you are feeling uncomfortable and it is ineffective it is time time to look in a mirror and see what is going on inside.

So true! As a novice though, I find it difficult to ascertain if a shield or similar energetic construct is ineffectual because of improper construction or because it can't block something that's coming from the inside :)

:yeahthat: I have a very difficult time believing/feeling like the shield is working for more than a few seconds at a time. I don't know if it is a problem with "suspension of disbelief," with sensing energy or with visualization.
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2015, 02:03:12 AM »

I wore a shield for so long it became a part of me. I knew it was there at times but most of the time it was concealing all my energy from anyone outside. It was an energy invisibility shield that protected me during the chaos of the 70s. When I finally brought it down I was immediately recognized by one of the elders who was an instrument of destruction in those years. He attempted to destroy my reputation but in his attempt he actually increased my popularity among most other parts of the Pagans in the area.

That is just to let you know that unless you are using your personal energy for a shield you might not be very aware of it. I rarely use personal energy for shielding. The one exception is my "screen door" shield. Some call it a "Bug Zapper" which is an easy name to remember but a bit misleading.

Here is how to construct the "Screen Door" shield:
Screen Door Shield

A personal energy shield for protection against annoying energies.

Center and ground and bring yourself to a visualization state.
Visualize any annoying insect. See that as an irritating or uncomfortable energy. Then think about a screen door. It is used to keep out annoying insects, and when they run into it SLAPP! The annoyance can't get through and peace returns. Unwanted or erratic energy is like a swarm of bugs. We are going to stop the bugs.

Take your personal energy and form a field of energy around you. Form it so that your aura is completely covered with it. When you have that field in place you want to charge it with your signature. Pour your energy into it and fill it in so there are no holes. When you are comfortable that it is in place and complete, name it. Call it “Bug Zapper”  or “screen door” or another descriptive word that you will think of when you feel annoyed by someone's energy. Build a box or tray in your mind and label it with the name of your shield. Roll the shield up and place it in the box or tray. Now it is no longer in place it is in storage for when you need to call on it.
This is the magik behind the screen door; Anytime you call on it it unfolds and is perfectly in place. The name you give it activates its use. It is transparent to energy that is compatible but “buggy” energy can't get through. You are using “power words” to initiate a shield that is premade for a specific purpose.

Practice using the “screen Door” as often as you like. Get used to using it quickly and “on demand”. This is training for you and the shield. You should work with it until it is second nature to you just like hugging yourself when you are chilled.

Be sure to center and ground after the shield is in place because it is using your energy and you will need to replenish that energy or wind up feeling drained and a little scattered yourself.

What are the consequences of using this shield?
The most obvious is that it uses your personal energy so it will tire you unless you recharge. Others, especially those sensitive, may see you as being closed or less approachable, so only use it when needed and then for the shortest time. Don't use it when meeting new people until you can recognize who you need to use it with.
Most others can still sense your energy but amplified because you have it out there “in their face”. It might make you seem “fake”.

No shield will protect you if you have physical contact with a person. I try to shake hands with people and if they are open to it there is a direct connection formed. No shield will work until that connection is removed. More on that later.
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2015, 02:25:34 AM »

Those who are new to "the craft" have a great deal to "un-learn". The longer you lived with the common beliefs or, like me, the longer you try to correlate logic and science to magik, the longer it will take you to be accepting of the "real" world. If you can think it up and believe it is, then it will be. This is one of those things that the effect must come before the cause.

My first involvement with a group was at an "energy party" that I was invited to. A very nice young woman met me at the door and told me that I had a strong energy about me. Ok, she was very pretty and I would have walked hot coals to be close to her. She had me sit on the floor and sat down facing me. She put her hands in the air at shoulder height and told me to do the same. I was told to imagine a rubber ball between our hands and to make it grow. well I saw that image in my mind and started to do as she asked and then the strangest thing happened. There was nothing visible but there was something between our hands! it exerted a force very much like a beach ball. She told me to hold it as she put her hands down to her knees. I was holding an invisible beach ball! Someone walked by and the ball evaporated. She looked at the person and said something but I don't recall what it was. We got up off the floor and she led me to another room where we were alone. She told me to close my eyes and relax. (she could have told me to jump in the air and stay there and I probably would have tried) She directed me in the making of a psychic shield that would calm me. As I built that shield I was, for the first time since very early in my childhood, alone in my mind and emotions. I am an emotional empath and I never knew until that minute which emotions were mine and which were not. She told me to open my eyes and what I saw was a very different person. She was less attractive to me and more like an older sister than a potential girlfriend. I told her how I felt and what had happened and she went into a long description of why it was I saw her differently without all the noise from the others.
From that day on I could shield the emotions of others from myself. I wasn't schizophrenic after all!
« Last Edit: October 02, 2015, 02:28:17 AM by DragonsFriend »
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vordan

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2015, 08:11:51 AM »

We seldom did energy work with new people, except basic grounding and being part of the circle. New people tended to either ruin energy work or get sick neither was a good result, sometimes just the energy just from the circle was too intense. People would come with a variety of energy and experience levels normally only one or two people at a time so we could adjust what we taught them to their needs. Some people never really would get it, some came for their spouses or partners. You have to look at each student and get a feel for what they were about, one size does not fit all.
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2015, 11:29:22 AM »

vordan,
I agree whole heartedly! We never let people join circle without an evaluation. Spouses are not automatically allowed. Children above the age of about four years old have also been problematic. When doing lessons the individuals can be worked with on a one-on-one basis or paired with someone with more experience.
In circle the high priest and high priestess have to manage the energy so it is up to them to keep things in place. Our open circles were always very simple with a clear objective and well defined before and during the circle. If the pre-ritual directives are described and each step along the way is well marked it is easier to keep people on task and the energy is easier to manage.
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Tinevisce

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2015, 02:18:24 AM »

Quote
If you raise a shield because you are feeling uncomfortable and it is ineffective it is time time to look in a mirror and see what is going on inside.

So true! As a novice though, I find it difficult to ascertain if a shield or similar energetic construct is ineffectual because of improper construction or because it can't block something that's coming from the inside :)

:yeahthat: I have a very difficult time believing/feeling like the shield is working for more than a few seconds at a time. I don't know if it is a problem with "suspension of disbelief," with sensing energy or with visualization.

Sorry DragonsFriend for somewhat hijacking this :)

@EM
TBH, this new knowledge of sensing my daily shield sort of just happened and it clicked onto place. I don't know what it is that I did right, but I can tell you what I did in the hopes of that helping you.
I used the molten fiery core of the Earth as a source, and that seemed to work really well for me. I have been pulled to make daily offerings of incense to the land ever since, though.

Re: the sensing part of it, it's not as though I feel particularly safer in general or less afraid of things that go bump in the night- it's really more like being aware of a layer of something surrounding me all the time.
I think, for me, popular media (TV shows, books and sometimes even books about energy work) presented the biggest obstacle in that they made me think that energy had to consciously make you feel a certain way. Like, a shield would always consciously make you feel safer....I actually got it into my head that if I didn't feel absolutely safe and protected, I must not be shielding right.

I've since been learning that that's not necessarily the case...am I making any sense at all?
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earthmuffin

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #14 on: October 08, 2015, 08:49:56 AM »

Yes, thanks, T. I suspect I need to get into the habit of a daily meditation/visualization.
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2015, 06:26:14 PM »

I know people who hear, feel, taste, smell and see energy. Different people perceive energy differently. I know one person who seems to be completely blind to energy. He accepts that it is there and that what he does works but can in no way perceive it at all. I can tell you that once a shield is in place for more than a few minutes I ignore it. It is like my skin, I notice it when I get a scrape but otherwise it is just part of me.

I wish I could have each of you in a class. It is always rewarding when the "light" comes on and people begin to acknowledge their potential.
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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2015, 08:05:27 PM »

I think I have been quite impaired with energy sensing-- partially due to my upbringing in science and partially because I have had some rather significant energy blockages in my body. I'm getting a bit better though now.
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #17 on: October 09, 2015, 10:04:46 AM »

Earthmuffin,
I was also very much the logic/science end of the spectrum but I was also an emotional empath. I knew that energy surrounded us I just never thought about controlling it. Once I became aware I began "playing" with it constantly. It is like everything else in life, the more you use it the stronger it becomes. I begin my energy classes with an explanation of energy (very science based) and then the ways that you can affect it. Centering and grounding are the first exercises followed by the three major sources and then building energy spheres between partners. The home work is to center and ground until it becomes second nature. Then building energy spheres on your own until that comes easily. It is a process of building on each step until you get so used to the energy work that it becomes like anything else in your life.
When you first start driving you have to constantly work to see all the signs, keep the car in your lane, use the turn signal and all the rest but when you do it for a while it all becomes automatic. Using energy is much the same. at first it is a lot of work and little things distract you but after you have built on your successes it all becomes a very natural thing.
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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #18 on: October 09, 2015, 10:52:30 AM »

Thanks, DF. I do practice Tai Chi fairly regularly and have taken karate in the past. Through those two things, I learned to ground and use my own energy fairly well. Where I have still have problems seems to stem from the fact that I have a lot of pain and blocked chi, which makes it more difficult to sense energy. Also, for a long time I misunderstood that some of the tai chi exercises and things such as circle casting and shielding require the use of external energy. I may also have empathic tendencies or at very least am very sensitive. I think I have spent my life trying to numb myself to bombardment with certain energies.  Any tips you might have for me are  much appreciated.
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DragonsFriend

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #19 on: October 10, 2015, 09:33:06 AM »

Find a quiet place and center and ground daily. When that comes easily (second nature) then begin a MedLax routine. Just fifteen minutes a day after centering and grounding meditate through relaxation for the sole purpose of doing nothing. Clear your mind or focus on your body and DO nothing for that fifteen minutes. Remember that calm feeling as you go about the rest of your day.
After four weeks of that let me know how you are feeling.
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Athena

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #20 on: October 11, 2015, 03:25:17 AM »

Find a quiet place and center and ground daily. When that comes easily (second nature) then begin a MedLax routine. Just fifteen minutes a day after centering and grounding meditate through relaxation for the sole purpose of doing nothing. Clear your mind or focus on your body and DO nothing for that fifteen minutes. Remember that calm feeling as you go about the rest of your day.
After four weeks of that let me know how you are feeling.

That sounds like exactly the thing I needed.

I have a question though, that wanders off from your question and relates to my personal journey. My life is undergoing a lot of radical changes at all levels currently. So while relaxation and meditation helps, there are things which I need to control and mollycoddle a bit lest they fall apart. Should I go for individual sessions for different intents or is it okay to group some of them together when I work? How does the energy equation work in such cases?
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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #21 on: October 11, 2015, 11:03:10 AM »

Find a quiet place and center and ground daily. When that comes easily (second nature) then begin a MedLax routine. Just fifteen minutes a day after centering and grounding meditate through relaxation for the sole purpose of doing nothing. Clear your mind or focus on your body and DO nothing for that fifteen minutes. Remember that calm feeling as you go about the rest of your day.
After four weeks of that let me know how you are feeling.

That sounds like exactly the thing I needed.

I have a question though, that wanders off from your question and relates to my personal journey. My life is undergoing a lot of radical changes at all levels currently. So while relaxation and meditation helps, there are things which I need to control and mollycoddle a bit lest they fall apart. Should I go for individual sessions for different intents or is it okay to group some of them together when I work? How does the energy equation work in such cases?
Unless you can keep your intents for each part of your life clear and defined doing energy work on more than one thing at a time is an unmanageable mess. I would only have one very focused intent at a time. You should also remember that most of what goes on in ones life only requires your personal work and not magik to hold it together. Without any idea of the subject and objects of your intent here it is difficult to be more specific.
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Athena

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #22 on: October 12, 2015, 07:54:06 AM »

Find a quiet place and center and ground daily. When that comes easily (second nature) then begin a MedLax routine. Just fifteen minutes a day after centering and grounding meditate through relaxation for the sole purpose of doing nothing. Clear your mind or focus on your body and DO nothing for that fifteen minutes. Remember that calm feeling as you go about the rest of your day.
After four weeks of that let me know how you are feeling.

That sounds like exactly the thing I needed.

I have a question though, that wanders off from your question and relates to my personal journey. My life is undergoing a lot of radical changes at all levels currently. So while relaxation and meditation helps, there are things which I need to control and mollycoddle a bit lest they fall apart. Should I go for individual sessions for different intents or is it okay to group some of them together when I work? How does the energy equation work in such cases?
Unless you can keep your intents for each part of your life clear and defined doing energy work on more than one thing at a time is an unmanageable mess. I would only have one very focused intent at a time. You should also remember that most of what goes on in ones life only requires your personal work and not magik to hold it together. Without any idea of the subject and objects of your intent here it is difficult to be more specific.

Totally understandable. I agree we don't need magic to hold everything. May be I have to learn to take it slow.
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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #23 on: October 12, 2015, 04:04:27 PM »

Patience is an art that requires one to be patient. :)  just one of those remarkable polarities of life.
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A mature witch's life should reflect the balance of the universe

earthmuffin

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Re: Pagan 101
« Reply #24 on: October 15, 2015, 12:26:04 PM »

Find a quiet place and center and ground daily. When that comes easily (second nature) then begin a MedLax routine. Just fifteen minutes a day after centering and grounding meditate through relaxation for the sole purpose of doing nothing. Clear your mind or focus on your body and DO nothing for that fifteen minutes. Remember that calm feeling as you go about the rest of your day.
After four weeks of that let me know how you are feeling.

Hi DF,
I have a question for you. I have not yet had the chance to ask my Tai Chi teacher about this. Many times when I am grounding and centering standing up during Tai Chi class (sinking the chi), my belly gets uncomfortably full feeling. Am I doing something wrong or how can avoid that feeling? Thanks.
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"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion." The Dalai Lama
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