Gnosis Diary: Life as a Heathen

My personal experiences, including religious and spiritual experiences, community interaction, general heathenry, and modern life on my heathen path, which is Asatru.

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Witches Party in Vegas

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

A sea of black witch hats filled the hotel lobby. Outside, a drum circle on the fake grass below the lights of nearby hotels boomed its ever-changing rhythms into the night as the giant lighted name Trump peered down over the garden wall from across a dark No Man's Land of downtown. The mermaid in the hotel pool swished her tail and ate fish from the tapas bar.

I was at the Halloween Soiree put on by Sin City Witches. That morning, I was preparing for renfaire when I got a message on the book of faces inviting me to a witch event that night. I had not originally planned to go to the Halloween Soiree because it was literally the night before the Renaissance Faire started, and I did not want to poop out before Saturday night because that was when Phyllis's funeral was going to be held at faire (see my previous post for my adventure that night.) But they offered me and my housemate free tickets and sent a car for us, and said I could hang out with guest of honor Jason Mankey and be a surprise extra guest of honor, so how could I say no to that?

I had a great time at the Soiree. I wanted to meet Jason because I had reviewed his book for Eternal Haunted Summer Magazine and had become an online acquaintance, and it was great to finally meet in person. We had a great time chatting. The drum circle in the moonlight and neon light was a lot of fun. My friend and kindred member the Mermaid Librarian performed there in the outdoor pool that night and it was great to hang out with her a bit too. There were various performers indoors as well although I mostly stuck to the outdoor entertainments for pandemic safety. Indoors, a friend read tarot cards, and various other readers and vendors had their tables. It was an impressive crowd for a local pagan event. (Cue me being an old person and remembering when there were just not very many pagans and heathens in any given city.)

Going to events like this together, and being able to hold Asatru rituals at my house, is one of the great things about newly living in an all pagan and heathen household for the first time in my life. I did hold Asatru rituals at my house for years while mom and I lived together but I usually toned down the stuff about gods and goddesses because she always wanted to participate in what I was doing but also always said she was an atheist; even though some things she did and said seemed pretty pagan, she also often said religion is stupid. And at other times before and since sharing a house with my mom, I have had various housemates none of whom were pagan or heathen, and I pretty much just did not do any rituals with other people at the house then, just did some quiet rituals by myself such as raising a toast with coffee on the back porch. It's great to be able to talk openly at home about spiritual and religious experiences, even the really mystical ones.

It's now a few days after renfaire was over, and I have not yet gotten around to all the post faire cleanup I need to do even though I only went to faire Friday and then dragged myself down to the park again Saturday night for the funeral, and didn't go Sunday at all. But I did get around to doing something I've been wanting to do for a very long time: try absinthe.

My housemate and I had absinthe ritual instead of afternoon tea today. I lit a small candle in a glass holder, and while I poured icewater through a sugar cube the glass candle holder started to vibrate. We sipped our drinks and I said it was literally giving us a buzz. We laughed. But then the holder started to pause, buzz, pause, buzz, pause, buzz... it sounded like a cat purring. It started to feel like a spiritual experience rather than a joke. We talked about the Green Fairy's cat. My housemate and I imagined it differently, but that is ok. Perhaps it appears differently to different people.

I composed a poem while sitting at the dining room table. I had not written any poems for a while, and if I am ever creatively blocked again, I might try this again. Then I napped and dreamed of fairies. Here is my poem:

Green Fairy Cat
by Erin Lale
Have you ever heard the purring
Of the Green Fairy’s cat,
With white eyes and green fur
And a tale after that?


Image: the Mermaid Librarian performing at the Halloween Soiree, watercolor style photomanipulation by Erin Lale

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Erin Lale is the author of Asatru For Beginners, and the updated, longer version of her book, Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path. Erin has been a gythia since 1989. She was the editor and publisher of Berserkrgangr Magazine, and is admin/ owner of the Asatru Facebook Forum. She also writes science fiction and poetry, ran for public office, is a dyer and fiber artist, was acquisitions editor at a small press, and founded the Heathen Visibility Project.


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