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About songlore

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  • Gender
  • Location
    United States
  • Interests
    Folklore, folk and traditional music, languages, writing (fictional and academic), hiking
  • How familiar are you with witchcraft?
    I'm somewhat familiar in general and very familiar within a limited scope.
  • Have you explored other paths?
    I'm a beginner on this path. I've done the whole Wicca thing with the year and the day and the whole nine yards. And while that resonated better than the Christian faith I grew up with, it still felt off. It felt a bit like Christianity, in that it felt like window dressing rather than a genuine part of my day to day life. I've been exploring a broader sense of what witchcraft is and what that means and I've started to feel a bit more at home with it since doing that.
  • Have you ever worked with Traditional Witchcraft?
    That depends on how one defines traditional witchcraft (which I realize is the next question). I come from a family of traditional healers - granny women, to use local terminology - and so was raised with some knowledge of herbalism and traditional healing. As far as any sort of ritual element, I don't know how traditional any of my practice has actually been. It's mostly been herbalism, traditional healing, and kitchen witch type work.
  • What does Traditional Witchcraft mean to you?
    To me, traditional witchcraft means getting back to the roots of things. So getting back to an understanding of nature and one's relationship to it, and how to cultivate that relationship in order to bring about change in one's own life and small corner of the world.
  • How long have you worked with witchcraft in general?
    About 6 years off and on. (It didn't really solidly stick until I stepped away from practice that felt scripted.)
  • What brought you to our site?
    This forum seems different than most of the ones I've come across. Less Wicca-oriented, not focused on religion so much as practice, and less trying to get you to buy things.
  • What do you expect to get from this site, and what do you expect to contribute to this forum?
    I'm hoping to get a better sense of direction from being here and being part of discussions that include those more experienced than myself. I hope that coming from a somewhat unique perspective (given I study folklore and folk song) I might have some insight I can offer. Although I'm not entirely sure to what extent that will be useful yet.
  • Do you belong to any other online witchcraft sites?
    Not at the moment, no.
  • What are your strongest points in witchcraft?
    Focus and a good knowledge of Appalachian traditional healing practices.
  • What are your weakest points in witchcraft?
    Direction. I often feel a bit lost trying to sort through everything, which I think is what drew me to Wicca as a complete beginner.
  1. I'm usually reading a few things at a time. Currently, I'm reading three books. I'm slowly working my way through A Gathering of Shadows, second book in the Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab. The chapters in all the books in this series are very short, so it's good for bedtime reading. I just restarted Hounded, first book in the Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne. And I'm finally actually getting a chance to read The Ballad of Frankie Silver, by Sharyn McCrumb, which I encountered as part of my thesis research.
  2. This sounds like my two, as far as the off-key recitations of the Handbook of Feline Rights. ???? I've got a tiny, sassy, female, all black DSH and a big, cuddly, male, very orange, tabby DSH.
  3. I have a black cat named Lila. I would count her as a familiar, as any time I sit down to do any sort of work, she is *right* there, usually on my alter. She's singed off a few whiskers that way... She also likes working outside with me, besides her usual walks and hikes. She came from a shelter, but I didn't pick her, she picked me. I was there to see a different cat, but every time I would pass her cage she would come to the front and scream and reach out to try to grab my sleeve. The shelter staff was baffled, because apparently she never did that with anybody besides regular shelter volunteers. They had never seen her act that way with a stranger. Which pretty much sealed it, as far as "this is your cat." She's blossomed since she came home. She's very outgoing and a complete ham. She also seems very attuned to my moods and will bring me puffballs when I'm upset and scream until I throw them. (She likes playing fetch, so I think the cat logic there is that "the human is sad, fetch makes me happy, fetch will make the human happy." Or I might be over anthropomorphising there.) At a whopping 8lbs - 3.6kg, for the metric folks - she believes she is the biggest, baddest, most fearsome creature ever. Aside from perhaps deer, which she's afraid of. She and her "brother," Kell, are both named for book characters. Kell is a big, orange tabby. Even though he's also generally right there as soon as I sit down to work, I don't count him as a familiar. Whereas Lila will sit on my alter through an entire ritual and then leave immediately after it's done, Kell just sort of wanders in to sit on my lap and then wanders back out. He's more lap cat than familiar. Familiar or not, though, he's an excellent cuddler, which I think is a great quality in a pet.
  4. I just went through a big move recently. Like this past weekend recently. The short version of that story is: started Ph.D. program, got very sick, could not keep up with program, was diagnosed with a relatively rare immune system disorder - because that's precisely my luck, it can't be anything common and easily fixable - am no longer in Ph.D. program because it's pointless for me to be there until my health is under control. But because I was no longer a student nor was I employed by the university any longer, I ended up moving back home, seven hours from where I had been living. (With my parents for the moment until I find a long-term job and an apartment. Hopefully I will be on my own sooner rather than later, just me and the cats again. I love my family, but I will pull out all my hair if I'm here too long.) So my question to you guys is, is there anything you do when you go through a big move? Or even a little move? Basically, do you have a specific ritual or routine you do upon inhabiting a new space? Usually I smudge the north, south, east, and west corners of whatever space that happens to be. I may spend some time meditating and just feeling the place out to see what it needs. I also have a pair of statues (they're sort of effigies of guardian spirits that were gifted to me) I keep as close to the door as possible and put up as soon as I possibly can upon arriving. Anybody else do something similar? Something different? Nothing at all? What are your routines for that?
  5. To me, what's traditional is what I was raised with and expanding from there. I've mentioned this before, but I come from a family of traditional healers. Much of what I know of the craft, I learned from them. Even though they're strict Southern Baptists, that practice has always been separate from religion to them. Sure, they might have prayed with whoever they were healing, just for a little extra divine help, but the actual practices of folk medicine and herbalism were not faith based. Instead, they were based in an understanding of the land and the resources it could provide. The *only* theistic element might have been looking at these as God-granted resources (given the time period, it's likely, though I've not heard accounts of it), but the work itself was not religious. The actual title was handed down oldest daughter to oldest daughter, but all the girls would learn growing up. Some of them married into nearby towns and practiced there. And starting there, working with that healing practice that's been handed down for at *least* 400 years and branching outward into Spirit work and really gaining a deeper understanding of nature as a whole, that to me is what makes this traditional. But, as has been mentioned already, it's important to acknowledge that this isn't static. It's changed over time and I've changed it myself, since I live primarily in a much colder climate than the relatives I learned from and so work with different plants some of the time. That doesn't make it any less traditional. It's more sort of "tradition+".
  6. I can usually get my hands on whatever I need wherever I am, as my work has only had me traveling domestically and within a region I'm very familiar with. I've been taught how to find the herbs I need for various things. I do keep a few crystals, a couple of candles, and a sort of altercloth (mostly to wrap everything in so it doesn't get lost and to protect things from the red dirt because that does *not* wash off). I also tend to carry small, pocketsized notebooks for my fieldwork and have started carrying one with me as a Grimoire. The size makes them easy to stick in a bag or pocket and the hard covers protect the pages.
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