Archive for February, 2014

Hello, I just want to begin to learn about Wiccan/Pagan. I am Christian right now but I don’t feel very connected to Christianity. I love the earth, nature, stones, stuff in that nature. I just want to know where is a good place to start a Wicca/Pagan practice? I don’t know what to look for or do.

– Kris

A good place to start is with Lauren Manoy’s Where to Park your Broomstick. That’s how I got started and it really was useful for me as she also gave a brief overview on other faiths that you may or may not have heard of but could possibly resonate better with.

It’s important to think long and hard about your current faith in Christianity such as what is it that you don’t connect with? What do you disagree with? Why do you feel a disconnect and where is it situated? Is it with the people? Is it with the core beliefs? It’s important you do a lot of thinking because, well, changing religions is serious business. People use faith as the bedrock of their morals and beliefs, thus why you have to make sure that you’re going to be okay leaving one religion for another. Otherwise, you’re never going to feel at home in whatever faith you choose.


I’m from Malaysia. I would like to ask is there a way to find out if a person is dead or alive?

Sorry I ask this because, last year on my Birthday – he came into my dream. This guy was my former schoolmate and admirer but we don’t keep in touch. After 21 years, he came into my dream.

In the dream, we went back to our school days where he met me, then jumped into when we are in working life and we date. Final part was then, the both of us get married. Weird is that, he appear in a very bright and clean. He does not utter even a Single Word.

I’m not sure if this means he is dead? I want to find out the truth. If he’s dead or still alive.

Please advise me what to do. Thanks.

– Jennifer S.

Dreams are interesting. You could be getting an omen, learning information about someone or the person could be standing in as a dream symbol. If he seems to be showing all the dream signs that he’s died, you should search for his records. Ask around if you know anyone that may have possibly known you both, look in the papers for an obituary. I guess a good date to start is around when you had the dream and go from there.

If you found a living person (as in, he’s alive and well) then just take what you saw in the dream as a symbol. And that symbol would be whatever this dude meant to you. So if he was the creative type, it refers to creativity. If he was the hyper analytical type, it refers to logic and so on and so forth.

If you found a dead person, it’s up to you what you want to do. If the person died recently, send the family some flowers and your condolences. If it was a while ago, just let sleeping dogs lie and see what symbol he could have played in the dream.

Alright, that’s the Ask Black Witch for this month, everyone. Next month is a new series called “Shut Out” and the subject is mental illness in the Black community. Topics include dealing with mental illness, culture and stigma not only from the Black community but society at large. That means there will be guest writers for this upcoming series to provide their input and perspective.

Hello my name is Kiara and I’ve been researching Paganism/Witchcraft for the past few months. However, since I still live at home (I’m a 20 year old college student), I’ve only been able to learn through online research. I’d like to start getting some books and was wondering if you had maybe a list of reputable authors or books. I apologize if you’ve answered this before but I couldn’t seem to find it through your tumblr or Black Witch website. Thank you and have a great day!

– Kiara

I guess this means I have to do more work in making BW much more searchable or create a new webpage for books I have already recommended on Black Witch. I have suggested a lot of books, especially during The Arts!: Samhain Editions. The book I recommend the most is Where to Park your Broomstick by Lauren Manoy.

And that’s all the Ask Black Witch for this month! Next month is a month long series called “Stuck in My Head”, focusing on mental illness in the Black community.

Before we get started, have you seen Huffington Post’s feature of me in “Celebrating The Diverse Spirituality And Religion Of African-Americans”? You should check it out.

Music Inc
Without a doubt, I love this game. I learned about it via Tumblr and am glad I did. It is a free mobile game created by UK Music, the Intellectual Property Office and Aardman Animations – I am a big fan of Wallace and Grommit since I was a child so I was like “Meh, meh, SOLD.” – and it creates a pretty realistic glimpse into the music industry and “let them experience the challenges encountered by artists in the digital age”. Oh man, is it a great game, here are some screen shots:



I like that it is pretty neatly packed with you trying to find artists to sign and furnish them into world-class performers that, of course, will earn you major money but it comes with unforeseen bumps such as song leaks, the fiscal effects of piracy, frustrated musicians, online flame wars and how everything means so much, even if it is just a little. You can track song stats your performers made, release songs, shelve songs, put folks on tour, get them producers and other outside creators, bump up their image and more! It’s a great game that does not go for gimmicks to prove a sobering point that making it in the music biz is really, really hard. As you’ll see, none of this is easy or cut and dry. However, it’s possibly not really directed at artists like the review said since artists are not really at the center of this game but someone trying to start up a label. The artists kind of seem like horses in a stable or a gaggle of kids you have to take care of.

With the game, I wish you could have options to go on tour with other folks on your label (if you have more than one or two artists). I haven’t unlocked all the tiers of the game so maybe you can but I haven’t seen it yet. I would like that because it’s extremely realistic when performers go on tour, they tend to sometimes be on the same label, which rakes in more money for the record company. And it would be great to have the option of various artists on your label being able to guest on other label mates’ songs since that happens as well. And more diverse music hopefuls! They’ve got a great line up so far (some of them being light spin offs of actual performers), I want to see a bigger sea of different faces. Or at least have more different people pop up on the “Pick an artist to sign” section once your label gets more notoriety since that’s also pretty realistic as well as bigger labels have more people clamoring at them than start up labels. I think a little of a “Help” section may be nice, too, because even I was perplexed a couple times and I actually know how the industry works (for the most part). Oh, and I was a bit frustrated (because it’s me), that there were no songs for me to hear because I kept thinking, “I don’t know what the song sound like so I don’t know how to play the market!!!!! But I also wanted more input from the artist. I mean, they’re the ones the business is dealing with, I wanted to see “An artist complained about their 360 deal, they wanted a 7 months/5 song option!” or something like that (since the game goes with months and songs instead of years and albums, even though the latter is what really happens in reality). Again, as aforementioned, this game is more so pointed at the person starting a label and artist trying to express themselves without going broke.

I showed my friends this game because I thought it was that interesting and one, Vicki, had this to say:

“Mmkay so it’s an addictive strategy management game and it’s hard as sh*t. The most I’ve been able to do is sign 2 artists but I wind up going bankrupt and having to start again….Reading the review explains why the game plays like it does. Like for example, no weight is placed on the actual song and the artists are treated like not people. There is a ton of emphasis based on piracy. This game was just made to portray multimillion dollar recording agencies in a sympathetic light when if you look at how the artists are treated, they’re just money makers. In the game, you start out with £1000 when in real life, these companies have billions. Like it’s designed to make you think that the business is suffering. That being said, it’s a really fun game. Kind of like Spent.”

I actually agreed with this notion because the artists, once you think about it, are pretty faceless in a way. You get a name, face and genre but you don’t treat anyone different based on their genre, sound, etc etc. That’s probably why it frustrated me earlier because I couldn’t hear music to determine how I wanted to go with the music because the artist doesn’t really play a part except to be like a horse in a stable.

So far, this game is amazing even though there are some flaws and I highly, highly recommend you check it out. It’s a fun game that can get frustrating at times because the music industry is actually frustrating but very enjoyable, all in all. You have got to play this game. It’s playable on iOS and Androids devices.

Le1f’s music is really an interesting sound and with very interesting visuals. I first heard of him from his video “Wut”

I think this video is great because not only does the rapper show his skills in flowing with his deep, gravel voice, he shows different body types and even uses White bodies as props, which isn’t commonly seen. Usually it’s Black folks being used as objectified props (Ex: Miley Cyrus, Die Antewoord, Lilly Allen, Mackelmore, Grimes, the list goes on and on and on and on) so the imagery is really striking and (certainly refreshing). That and he has an uber crisp Harlem shake. Le1f would have been a better rapper to tote about in regards to gay rights than Macklemore because Le1f could actually count for a better representative of being gay and interacting with hip hop than Macklemore ever could, who’s only song about being gay was about having a gay scare. Not to mention, just like Paganism, gay lgbtq groups have a “White is right” problem, which is probably why Le1f doesn’t always get the shine (as well as other gay rappers who are minorities) that he deserves.

If you want to know more about him, look him up here




Orisinal Games
I used to play these games so much, I loved them dearly. Back in around 2003-2005, there weren’t a lot of gaming sites online and I remember coming across Orisinal as something cute and gentle but challenging. And these games are created and coded by a girl, which is fantastic! Look at all the work she’s done.


I really like the game High Delivery, a game where you collect flowers using a fan and deliver them to heaven. The sound and visuals are very serene, I love the game very much. I highly recommend playing it.

That’s all The Arts! for February! Next week is Ask Black Witch. Remember, good questions are appreciated, bad questions are eviscerated.

No Sale

Being BW, I like having a decent comment section. Then occasionally I get this gem:


The derp is real in this poor attempt of someone trying to hustle their wares. Wow. I explained in the comment but let me break it down in detail because I must say, I do not – I repeat, not – like posts like these. I thoroughly got rid of the emails but the email was the first dead giveaway this was fake. You know, I’m going to hit on all the issues bit by bit in list form! Yaaaaaay.

Email was self-promotional: No site representing Black Witch has anon. If you have something jacked up to say, you have to identify yourself. This means, to post a comment on BW, you have to post an email and the person so “refused to leave a name” the exact same email in the text that they did in the email section to post a comment. Usually, people put down their own emails in opposed to someone else’s, even if they thought the business was great because, well, they’re not that business’ PR person. This person covered their tracks poorly.

Jacked up story that makes not a hair of sense: So, apparently this Cynthia – I thought you weren’t going to leave a name?! – person is trying to get back a guy who cheated on her…but he’s upset she (rightfully) freaked out and won’t speak to her. Yeaaaaah, this almost totally confirms the story was not only made up but by a guy. The sexism in the passage is too great to be realistic. Usually anyone who has been cheated on generally don’t want anything to do with the person who got caught. If anything, it’s usually the cheater that’s begging to get a word in edge-wise, not the one who has been betrayed. This story makes no sense. Must go in deeper.

“My name is Cynthia and my ex-boyfriend dumped me 8 months ago after I caught him of having an affair with someone else and insulting him.”

Wait, your cheating boyfriend dumped you because you insulted him after catching him with someone else? Yeah, that makes no sense, I tell you. This is how I could tell a guy wrote this because it minimizes the usual reaction a woman has to a dumping (hint: it’s a lot more than mere insulting going on because women happen to be people and people don’t like betrayal in their personal relationships in general). It somehow frames the guy as if he did nothing wrong and his chick – Cynthia, here – totally freaked out and it was an inappropriate response. To be honest, I thought the message first said, “He caught me having an affair with someone else” because of how the sentence was fraimed.

“I want him back in my life but he refuse to have any contact with me”

So you want your cheating boyfriend back in your life – remember, this dude wronged Cynthia, not the other way around – and he won’t talk to you because somehow you bruised his ego while he trashed your trust. Riiiiiiiiiiiiight. This story is so fake. Usually it’s the cheater that has the hardest time ever talking to the person whose heart and trust they broke, not the person who was betrayed. If anything, they want nothing ever, ever to do with the person. Even if they do come back, it’s not without some genuine time away to think about things.

“I was so confuse and don’t know what to do, so I visited the INTERNET for help and I saw a testimony on how a spell caster help them to get their ex back so I contact the spell caster and explain my problems to him….. he cast a spell for me and assure me of 3 days that my ex will return to me and to my greatest surprise the third day my peter came knocking on my door and beg for forgiveness. I am so happy that my love is back again and not only that, we are about to get married.”

The person writing this is probably older than they would like to portray themselves. Seriously, who capitalizes the word “internet” like a Christian does with the word “Lord” or “God”. If anything it sounds a bit churchy with going “I saw a testimony….” Just doesn’t sound right, like the dude is trying to seem bigger than big, like a life saver somehow. Oh wait, I forgot, the spell caster did say he was a guy while parading as Cynthia, so I was dead on. So pretty much Cynthia asked spell caster to cast a will-bending love spell (which is a major no-no in many spell-caster eyes, regardless how they feel about karmic repercussions or otherwise because nothing says “I love you” quite like “I will zombify you into loving me.”) to drag this totally-not-interested-in-her-anymore guy – Peter, his name is – back to her and warp him into marrying her, despite not showing any change to his personality. Begging for forgiveness and being brainwashed into marriage doesn’t count as “Will try to be a better guy.” Happy Valentine’s Day! Clearly the love is so strong in this mythical relationship.

“Once again thank you oral spell caster, you are truly talented and gifted contact his email:[derp@thisisbullsht.never – BW]”

“Oral spell caster”? That makes not a whole lot of sense in the context of your message. If it was over the internet, how could you know what the person did to cast a spell? For all you know they did this with bunch of chickens:



And called it a day. That and the rear-loading of how wonderful this no-name caster is a bit much. I understand singing praises but this sentence strikes me as a fourth wall starting to show cracks.

Look, I don’t mind people wanting to attract new business, especially other Pagans. Thing is, there’s a way to go about it and this most certainly ain’t it. I don’t advertise any spell casters on here usually for a variety of reasons but it still would be better to ask than to try being slick like this person. I don’t appreciate that. Start your own side business using your own means and resources if you want to do pay-for-pray but don’t spam my site.

Next week is The Arts! Let’s see who’s getting featured!

– Music Inc.
– Le1f
– Orisinal Games

Snowdrift Opinions

Wow, it’s been a two weeks of race stuff for me. First, it starts with after the Grammys and how everyone is pissed that Macklemore swept the rap section (I don’t really have an opinion over that musically since I’m firmly in the rock part of the business but Nikki Lynette wrote a really good piece on it as a Grammy voter). And finishes with some why-don’t-you-spoon-feed-me pandering.

We’ll start with the music stuff since that happened first.

See, on Tumblr, it all started with an ask that was very well answered by Something Wratchet about why folks are up in hackles over why Macklemore won, particularly over Kendrick Lammar because it is like the best metaphor of gentrification ever:

Ask answered by Something Wratchet

And what it turned into was a quagmire because a random White Pagan with, as he says, no knowledge of music, music industry or anything that could translate into intellectual discussion on this topic decided to stumble in and throw around what is usually nicknamed White Opinions everywhere and then shifted almost seamlessly into White Tears. Yep, this guy, Pathfinder-Tarot, is exhibit A, B, C and D of why White Pagans can’t make friends with minority Pagans so easily. Check below and click to read the whole thing:

Click to read the whole thing

Click the pic to read the whole thing, it’s a doozy

White Pagans really should collect this guy and talk to him about why for a person with pathfinder in the name, he’s hella lost mentally. I even had the chance to pull out the bingo board (and the ignore button because if he’s following me for my content, maybe he could try elsewhere since he doesn’t deserve it as a non-ally, maybe leave the religion altogether.)

The bingo board o’ destiny!

'Da Bingo Board o' Destiny!!!!!! Derailment Bingo

‘Da Bingo Board o’ Destiny!!!!!!
Derailment Bingo

You can print and play at home. I didn’t even read the rest of the whinging after a certain point because for someone who called me angry (how dismissive, I’m apparently angry because y’know, that’s the only setting I can be on when discussing race because if there’s one thing White folks who are clearly caught up in their feelings don’t like, it’s how the person they’re talking to might have a point) he’s just crying and crying and crying to the tune of “won’t someone please think of the White people! We’re all human! Can’t you just ignore the past like we want you to?!” Seriously, if the guy is this bereft of knowledge of why Macklemore’s win is problematic racially, he probably has zero clue why the lgbt community doesn’t like this guy so much as media does. His song “same love” starts off with him basically saying “I had a gay scare in 3rd grade because I was doing all the stereotypical gay people things I learned that only gay people do, glad mom set me straight”. If the best song about queer love is by a dude who had a brief worrisome moment that he might actually be queer, thaaaaaaat’s saying something.

And folks, if you’re going to talk to me about privilege, don’t be like Pathfinder-tarot and not know the difference between different forms of privilege such as class privilege from racial privilege because that Ukraine reference is from way out of left field in his futile attempt to derail the conversation. I’m academically trained in this stuff, please know what they hell you’re talking about before getting caught up in your feelings. Especially if you’re going to say you’re not an ally because to say you’re not an ally to a minority, this is what they hear: “I’m a racist and proud of it. I wanna be best friends with George Zimmerman and regularly watch Fox News. Obama is the worst president we ever had because he’s Black.” The only opposite of ally is pretty much bigot, there’s not a lot of gray area and if you’re declaring to be the opposite of ally, then you don’t deserve respect.

I do appreciate the assist from Tumblr user, thedappledsky because for a 19 year old, she’s very sharp as a tack and I like that because this guy was super annoying and would not shut up, good gods. Even brought up his zodiac sign as if that’s some major declaration of will or something impactful. That’s how you could tell he was way out of his league on the conversation and deserves to be hung high for other White Pagans to see why they should just keep their mouth shut or if they believe minority Pagans are making up all the interactions they have. Seriously, collect your boy. I’m sure he has an ask box on his tumblr so whatever you want to say to me, just say to him because I don’t care to hear it.

The next one is an ask I got while I was at the Imbolc ritual:

click to read answer. Apparently the tumblr is deactivated now

Click through to read answer. Apparently the tumblr is deactivated now


Dude, I know she really means well and usually meaning well would get a nice response out of me but talk about lazy. Seriously? Does she really need to be spoon fed about how to be an ally personally when there’s a) Google b) my website, which has a new section called “race” c) Abagond wordpress, which is in the Links of Interest annnnnnnnd d) There was this really popular comic about how to be a White ally, as explained by a White ally, JamietheignorantAmerican, that made the rounds on Tumblr:

Click to read it all, it's really good and very informative

Click to read it all, it’s really good and very informative

I think I saw this comic in passing at least 5 times in a week, there’s no way this girl could have not seen it. While Bonnieeleven asked really nicely, it annoys me greatly when asked these questions because it means White folks think it’s my job to personally educate them only for them to never retain the information. They’ll forever make flubs just to come back again to a different person to be spoon-fed information once more. There is Google, there are tons of information out there to help teach them what to do from folks who could explain it better than I ever could. There’s that comic I just posted!!!! That comic gets it! There’s even really useful links at the bottom of that Tumblr for White allies!!!! If you can research metaphysical tomes that takes hours to find, then you can do a basic research on how to use your privilege in a constructive manner that doesn’t turn into pulling a Macklemore or being an insufferable White liberal (which is pretty much the same as pulling a Macklemore). Actually, I like this writing by The Cynical Witch titled The PPC and STFU. She gets it, too. Read, understand and comprehend. This part drives the point right home, after citing my work:

It is not my job, or hers, to educate you on the myriad ways you (and I) benefit from white privilege. Instead, I am going to ask the long time members of the pagan community to stand up. I want to know: why are you letting this happen?

Simple, ain’t it?

As for Bonnieeleven, I wasn’t able to respond to the follow up ask but it seems it would probably have not been worthwhile:


First of all, seems like this ask was cut off at the start, I couldn’t find the beginning anywhere. Second of all, why is it so important I give you a pat on the head? One should be fighting against racism and other forms of bigotry because it is the right thing to do, not for brownie points from the oppressed. I could sit here and assume this chick is secretly a Tea Party member and die-hard, Southern bred Republican, complete with Texas education and she should still be fighting against racism and other forms of oppression nonetheless. Would it bum her out? Most likely. Should it stop her? Nah, not really. Look, if you want to be a good ally? Do some leg work instead of asking me to do it for you and expecting brownie points. Allies are better appreciated when they fight oppression for intrinsic reasons (right thing to do), not extrinsic (the oppressed might give you a cookie).

If White Pagans wanted to be of some use to their own religious community, they should cut the White guilt and White anger and just educate themselves instead of annoy their minority Pagan counterparts. It’s not our jobs to teach them how their privilege is harmful when there’s so much info they can find themselves.

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