Archive for August, 2015


I’ve been gone for a while and that means I got messages while I was away. Which is a bit derpy because I said I wouldn’t be answering any while I was gone. The ones sent in around end of July weren’t of bad timing, the ones of earlier July were and not even that smart of a question to start with. So that means I can be as careless with those letters as they were with their consideration.

Hello, I have a question, and maybe I could be wrong but I have no idea at this point. So I was intimate with this woman who said she was a witch. She came over my house and since then a few strange things have happened. My coconut tree folded in half and died, my banana tree died, the strangest is my dog will not stay outside. I usually let her out in the morning and when I get home from work and after work she’ll stay outside for 2-4 hours at a time. Now she will not stay outside any longer than 5 min if that. She’ll paw at the door till I let her in. I was also sick for 2 weeks after being intimate, which doesn’t usually happen for me. Is there any way she cast a spell, or placed something around my house that would cause this. Is there any way I can cleanse myself or my house? If you have any idea’s or suggestions they would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

– Chris C.

Without additional information, this can easily falls into “bad question” category. The reason being is because just because you were intimate with someone who said they were a witch, it doesn’t promise that everything around you will suffer and die. That doesn’t make the slightest sense. I asked for more info but since this question was asked so early, I am certain there’s going to be no response.

If the chick had a nice time with you, I doubt she could be the problem unless she’s vindictive (and if so, why did you get with her? Should have seen this coming) so I’m going to assume she isn’t. If the relationship/interaction went sour, it would make sense. Otherwise, it could be a lawn problem that your dog picked up on but you haven’t. Which should have been the first thing you thought (assuming it was a good interaction or you would have said something), not the last. How about instead of bugging me, bug the people at a home & garden store?

I was wandering can u help me or show me a way on how to become a werewolf?Can u please give me some information.I really want to be one.

– Redi B.

This was so ridiculous, I didn’t bother to clean up the letter. Wandering/Wondering? Why can’t people write better? I mean, everyone makes typos, even me, but it’s no excuse for carelessness in writing to others. They may not take what you say seriously…like now.

I don’t think a poorly read werewolf is what the world need so I would recommend simply reading books that are actually above the literature level of Twilight and go from there. Especially since most metaphysical information isn’t built for lower reading levels. Ok…all metaphysical info isn’t built for lower reading levels.

I’m assuming that this is as confidential as website submission can be?-over the internet right?

I’ve been practicing years upon years-more of eclectic witchcraft. I am a wonderful person with Great sense of integrity, morale’ and ethics… I LOVE helping others in anyway that I can. I hope that you’ll read this with non judgement having said that at least.

I need suggestions for magickal work to balance my life back out- desperately-

Past 3 years of my life everything has continuously went downhill

A man I love walked out on my daughter and I after off and on of 5 year relationship-so I pretty much GAVE UP on being happy in that sense and within a year married a not so great person-at all with a complete lack of personal integrity and seemingly no conscious whatsoever, who continuously tries to DELIBERATELY prevent any productivity I try to create. Including my spiritual practices

Lost my vehicle
Out in the middle of nowhere
Not employed

The child support that I pay for my son from another relationship is an issue. Example- my “husband” said that he was paying it all along this year. Then a month ago I got served-just went to court today.

The father of my son continuously tries to make things difficult for me. (I lost custody of him, because his wife had a lot of money that helped it court. The judge said that they could provide more for him because of their financial status ect)-NOT because IM A BAD mother-BC IM NOT-AT ALL! I feel like I have to explain all of this so you’ll understand I’m doing EVERYTHING I can, and its one road block after another and its GOT TO STOP because my optimism tank is at 1%

Example about sons father- I have always been steadily employed-when I got fired he did everything he could to make seeing my son more difficult- I had to do all of the transportation 100%, he harassed our son about his visits, what he ate, hygiene, visitors everything and if anything was forgotten(such as a belt) I had to travel back to my home over 100 miles one way to get it, or he would ensure another court visit. I wound up losing my job from the time off….

Last December i got 3 cervical disk herniations –won’t go there, but I’ve still been applying for jobs and doing AT HOME SELF PHYSICAL THERAPY THANKS TO YOUTUBE!! and I can now move and walk without looking cripple(and a little magick healing) I applied for over 43 jobs within the last 3 weeks, and that was scoffed at by him today

I’m working on creating a website, applying for jobs and doing everything I can to stay positive, hopeful and Im running low

I just do not know where to begin now that ive made the first step of the day1 full moon”divorce” ceremony I completed successfully…………..

I need things to get better, and it’s obvious that it needs to go this route……the spiritual route…..

I know that with the right rituals I can rebalance everything and things will improve but im having a hard time staying grounded enough to focus all of the ideas I have. Being as it’s a waning moon, I think it’s imperative for me to start when I can but I want to FEEL that the steps I take are the best ones, so I thought that I would ask for suggestions, since I have a high lack in socialization because of living in “the woods” and lack of knowledgeable witchy friends 🙂 Shelters are not an option, nor family and friends for various reasons………

We are not in any “imminent physical dangers”- for me its emotional and mental challenges more to say than abuse- it openly pisses me off, and i silently am discouraged. Please respond as soon as you are able and thank you for your time in reading this rather long feedback 

– Frustrated and Confused

For skimming readers, the TR;DR:

“How do I bring balance back into my life after everything has gone so down hill? Jobless, nearly hopeless, I need balance again.”

The reader sounds like she’s been through a lot. I suggest the reader do meditation, especially grounding, centering and healing mediations. A good suggestion would be to visualize a scale that has heaps of sand on both sides and excess sand falling off until they balance out. That and to try to have a balanced diet (Allrecipes can help) or at least drink a lot of water to keep the effects of stress low. In addition, I made an employment guide on my site with resume builders, how to’s on doing well at an interview and more for various fields. There’s not an overnight solution, especially since this isn’t an overnight problem, sadly. There’s a lot of hard work in getting life back on track and in balance.

Greetings. I would like to know what state you are in? Where’s home? And if you have a picture available for viewing? I can provide a pic as well. Thank you for your attention.

– Raphael Uriel (you know this is a fake name)

This was while I was on break. I honestly thought, “If someone was planning a break-in, they really must be the dumbest criminal ever to just up-right and ask, where do you live?” And why would a pic be needed? What kind of question is that?

My response:

Why all these questions? Sounds waaaaay creepy, dude. Why are you so creepy?

– Black W.

These are indeed creep-level questions to ask a stranger on the internet. At random. I doubt many would go, “Oh, these are totally acceptable questions geared towards me. I usually talk about race, gender, mental illness, identity and metaphysics and other layman topics, questions like these are super normal.”

Dude’s response:

I do understand. Thank you for your time. Just showing interest. I know first hand that trusting people on the internet is not practical. Sorry it came off creepy.  Im obviously not doing this right. Forgive me if i have disturbed your peace in any way. 
Raphael

Ok, I hate guys who do this. Seriously. You come to my blog – which is not a dating blog by the way, or an OkCupid profile – where I talk topics that would certainly make anyone (or so I thought) not confuse it for a dating site, you ask questions that a weirdo burglar would ask (like, how do you just up and ask people “Where do you live? Can I see a picture?” and expect a positive response? Outside of dating sims, how many people have this worked on?) and then give a response like this?

A smart guy (not one stupidly borrowing the namesake of the archangel of wisdom and information) would have probably done what even Dr. Nerdlove recently suggested would have just been a regular reader and just have a regular conversation with me. There’s not really a chance in Hades I would date a reader (Exhibit A of dating fans: Chester Bennington and his ex-wife Samantha, that was painful) and even less so one with zip, zero, zilch tact and social calibration. This site is a regular blog, not meant to catch flies. That minimizes my work. By a lot. Which is insulting because I’m pretty sure guy bloggers don’t get stuff like this an as often.

And if this moron knew trusting people up front on the internet isn’t practical, why did he still ask? Talk about empty-headed! What girl would want a guy like this? The kind of guy that practically needs a helmet, to be spun in bubble wrap and bugged with a gps so they won’t get lost walking through their own house. That’s not boyfriend material, it’s not even charity, it’s a waste of time on worthless space.

No, this guy is obviously not doing this right. And for dude readers going, “Then you should teach him, not chastise him.” Uhhhhh, I mention Dr. Nerdlove all the time now on my site, I seriously may add the dude to the Links of Interest. That means there’s already an expert on the field, it’s not my job to teach the dude how to interact with people, which he should have gotten the basics when he was growing up. Dr. Nerdlove does a great job, this dude should have read him instead of going up like the Hindenburg. Even if I would have turned the dude down, I wouldn’t be this harsh because, remember, tact can be the difference between having drinks with a girl and wearing a drink from a girl.

My response:
Waaaaait. Showing interest? So you go on a site that has nothing to do with dating, at all – the post I wrote previously before the vacation one was about race & gender, not dating –  and mistake it for an okcupid profile because you somehow didn’t know that site existed, then ask creepy questions like “where do you live? Can I see your picture?” as if those are ok questions to ask random people on the internet (something tells me you seriously don’t ask guys these questions right off the bat but try it, I strongly recommend. I’m sure you’ll make many dude friends that way). Y’know, I’ll just post this on my site to make fun of because maybe you should just stick to dedicated dating sites than make yourself sound like an idiot. Why did you think this was a good idea? Swimming in bleach would have been smarter.

– Black W.

Basically this. What moron would think there was a good idea in the initial interaction? May work astoundingly well in dating sims where the girl is literally programmed to have no viable choices. Sucks obscenely bad when you’re dealing with the real world. I know chatting people up is hard but why make it harder for yourself by being such a dunce? I remember a cop friend of mine said “The best pick up line I ever had: ‘Hello, how are you?’” Simplicity and social calibration goes a long way. Way longer than this dude, who crashed before leaving the shipyard. (Granted, folks, please don’t email me with just “Hello, how are you?” Even Cleverbot says more words. Especially to chat me up, then just don’t email me at all.) I already don’t like guys who approach me, I strongly dislike guys who confuse my website for a dating profile. Because they’re already saying, “I don’t take your intellect seriously, especially since I’m not going to bother to match it. At all.” That’s the disrespectful part. It would be different if the guy actually talked and attempted to have a conversation in opposed to saying basically nothing of relevance. At all.

I think the best way a guy has ever shown interest in me was simply talk to me like a normal person. Seriously. This is not like a normal person. If so, how would this dude fair in normal communications in school and getting (and keeping) a job? Not to mention going to the market. This isn’t a dating sim. And I keep making that comparison a lot because it’s true. It really isn’t. I’m giving this dude a hard time because he’s not the first nor the last to act this way and it never gets any less insulting.

All i can do is oppalogize.  As my father says im just a child in this world. Do as you must. Again sorry.

The best way this dude can truly apologize is never act like this to anyone else ever again. Seriously, don’t talk to girls like this manner is acceptable. Talk to them like they’re people, because they are. I’m sure his dad would be right to say that but A) the dude wasn’t born yesterday and B) that doesn’t mean you should act with such little tact, I’m sure his father would agree. How else would this guy be able to have and keep a job or do well in school if going the “I’m a child of this world” route for an excuse, which is what it is. What if his boss was a woman, is this dude just gonna just lose all professionalism and go “Where do you live? Can I see pictures of you?” What if this dude had a female study partner, would dude just go “Where do you live? Can I see pictures of you?” It’s minimizing. There’s other ways to show interest (including figuring out if they want interest shown to them, period) that isn’t the “let me just treat them like they’re pixelated” route. That’s why I’m not going “Awww, this poor dude was trying, lemme be soft.” Nah, there isn’t any trying at all.

The Trendy Geek

I just recently found this jewelry maker because I was looking for medical bracelets (remember folks, I got PTSD and Dissociative and they’re getting pretty bad). I didn’t want something chunky or clunky nor something that looks like something a 50-year old with a silver hairy chest and clotted heart would wear. At first I thought there was simply one company that made medical bracelets, like, an official brand that if you deviate from, all first responders would simply ignore. Theeeen logic and Google showed something different. All it needs is a caduceus (the medical symbol) and info on your disruptive illness in question, which can be on the front or the back. Or in a QR code (how hi-tech!). I simply wanted something simple, won’t bother my OCD like a chain bracelet would, and, since I don’t like wearing bracelets or anything, something I won’t try to take off because it bugs me, so nothing thick.

After searching Google for what felt like eons, site after site of ye-gods-wow expensive medical bracelets (I’ve seen $50-$80 medical bracelet), I went to Etsy instead. I actually found this funky cuff bracelet that I really liked:

medi bracelet

I really like the skinny look, very minimalist. Not only, but it can be customizable far beyond what you put on it. It varies what kind of finish you can have such as a shiny finish, hammered finish, brushed finish, etc. Also, what I noticed on this site is the rings and trinkets available for anyone who loves geekery and games.

Don't open dead inside

locket

Most importantly, these are all handmade by one person, Gina Stone. She’s a really talented artist and I really like her works. She is very easy to talk to and a speedy responder (I had to talk to her about the customization of the bracelet). Her products are reasonably priced. The medical bracelet I’m getting is $20, which is fine for me because it’s handmade with a hammered finish (the baseline finish is shiny, $18). That’s not expensive, really, at all since it’s the price for a decent bracelet.

Since all the Trendy Geek products are handmade, the bracelet is going to take 1-2 weeks to be made. I just got my bracelet on Wednesday.

wpid-2015-08-19-19.57.28.jpg.jpeg

The box was really secure and came in a bubble mailer. Sorry it’s dark, the lighting sucked.

Everything is hammered in so it won't wear off

Everything is hammered in so it won’t wear off

wpid-2015-08-19-20.10.37.jpg.jpeg

Huzzah. It’s skinny!

Here is where you can find the Trendy Geek:

Etsy: The Trendy Geek
Facebook: The Trendy Geek
Pinterest: The Trendy Geek
Twitter: The Trendy Geek
Instagram: The Trendy Geek

Z-Type

This is a great typing game for anyone who wants to improve their typing skills with a fun game. I learned of this game a while back but it is a great recommendation, especially as you garner appropriate typing style.

Z-type

Here is the site where you can play: Z-Type

Qinni/Night Light

This is a wonderful short film called “Night Light” of a girl who can create anything with the stroke of a pen. However, there is an accidental stroke. But just because something is not perfect doesn’t mean it’s not worth having.

Sadly, WordPress won’t let me embed so watch it here on the artist’s deviantArt. To view her portfolio, see it here.

Money and Magick

Something super common about Paganism, Wicca and Witchcraft is how it sometimes seem so costly. Seeing practitioners with cauldrons, extravagant robes, visually rapturing wands, goblets and more, it can appear the price of entry and participation can appear way up there, somewhere past “college textbooks”. This meme submitted to Wiccan Cat Meme basically says it all:

Just as a reminder, I'm not Wiccan, just Pagan

Just as a reminder, I’m not Wiccan, just Pagan

I think such a paradox is ridiculous. I understand how someone can get sucked into it – I certainly did when I started and having a catalog of Avalon Moon as a teenager didn’t help – but for such a nature-based belief system, we can charge like Wall St. investors when it comes to our natural products.

It is very important for everyone to remember that you don’t have to pay out the wazoo to practice magick. It’s really cool to have that fancy candle holder and obsidian mirror with a robe that is as intricate as it is incredibly flammable but as nifty as it would be to be the prettiest fireball running down the block if you’re not careful, it’s not necessary. To do a money spell, for example, shouldn’t make you broker than you were when you came up with the idea. Yes, there’s the Western capitalist idea of “gotta spend money to make money” but when dealing with the universe and asking it for a solid, it’s probably better to think outside the box. Intent is there, physical substances are merely supplemental to the practice. Think of being a runner or simply an active person. You don’t have to be plastered from head to toe with Nike to simply jog, which only requires comfortable shoes and clothes as well as a water bottle. The extra stuff is certainly nice and can totally make running a lot more comfortable but not necessary.

Working magick can be done with birthday candles and some dirt from outside, it can be done just using only the salt and pepper shakers, it can be as simple as writing down a name and stuffing it into a short water bottle to freeze. Magick can be cheap, if not free. Magick can also be heavy meditation on a particular outcome. All these things require practice but they’re there. A smart witch is one that can work with little materials but still make it work. It’s not necessary to have the $300 crystal ball when a shiny glass or small orb of quartz is fine enough because the intuition comes from within, they’re just helper materials. Using table salt in circle casting (but not outdoor spellworking because that kills plants, try soil or protective herbs) is fine. Using the same chalk made for sidewalk art is fine in spellwork, too. Using a branch or incense stick instead of a wand or staff is ok as well. This is using nature to do natural magick.

Basically, while it can be great to use fancy materials in spellwork but what makes spellwork, well, work is the practitioner, mainly. To be informed of practices and spells via reading countless, substantial resources and to simply continue practice the basics such as energy manipulation and meditation, that’s what makes a great practitioner with successful spellwork that doesn’t break the bank. Because what’s the point of making a money spell that makes you more broke? That’s practically an accidental hex.

Next week is “The Arts!”:
– The Trendy Geek

– Z-Type

– Quinni

Firstly, join me and Tamara Winfrey Harris on Sunday at Exittheapple on 2334 Guilford Ave between 11AM-3PM in Baltimore City, MD for a discussion of the recent book The Sisters are Alright: Changing the Broken Narrative of Black Women in America. I believe there will be light refreshments. Alright, onward with the column.

Posted recently on the African American Wiccans Society FB group page was an article titled “Beware of Fake Crystals on Ebay (How to Know the Difference)” penned by aLoverOfLife. This article is actually really good about how to spot fakes when buying crystals online.

I usually buy my rocks from physical places but I definitely have bought gems online. Sometimes stores will over-price on something that you will eventually think, “This is a rock. I am about to spend $25 on a semi-common rock smaller than a phalange on my finger” in regards to so you want to have a more acceptable price. However, the thing about buying online is that you can wind up with fakes. Surprisingly, it never truly dawned on me that folks would sell fake stones because I thought it would stand out but I’ve been staring at rocks speculatively since I was a kid (and had a rock growing kit using chemicals) so there’s probably that. However, give folks an inch, they’ll take up half the coastline of California: I’m good at identifying a fake but the average person isn’t and especially not the noob who really just want to get any stone to start their witchy practice. And while there are those who would say, “Why don’t the person just go outside and dig in the dirt? There you go, rocks galore,” you’re not likely to find a Herkimer diamond or phantom quartz or sodalite in your backyard in the middle of Detroit. Hence why folks like me buy stones in physical and digital places.

The information the writer got was from an Ebay seller that recently closed shop that finally decided to share the tricks of the trade of how to spot a fake versus a real rock.

The starting information is about Azeztulite/Satyaloka (I’m not going to quote the whole article since clearly it has been written but merely give my own experiences), which is simply not real. It’s just a milky quartz with the price hiked up way high up. Also, here’s a rule of thumb since this is probably going to come up a lot: if the seller mentions that the rock (or any item of question) comes from a “secret” or “old” pocket or space of any US state or country (the more otherized, the better), it’s probably a fake. It’s very rare this is actually the case. If the orgin story sounds too glamourous to be true, it probably is. For example, I could find really good stones under the Middle River Bridge in Baltimore City, my hometown, buuuut that orgin story wouldn’t sell as well as “found from a secret pocket among the Appalachian mountains region”, which is basically the same thing, jazzed up.

Also, the piece says that rough white quartz is pretty much worthless in price. That’s actually quite true. Remember, not everything that comes from the earth warrants a high price and also remember that high prices are man-made, no rock comes out the ground with a price tag. Usually prices (fair ones) are based on established value delved from location (is it somewhere remote or easy to get to?), ease of acquiring (can you just pick it up off the ground or have to scale a mountain?) usage (can it power something or just be a pretty paperweight?) and rarity (are there a bunch of these scattered around like gravel or is this the only rock you’ve seen like this?). This is why some metaphysical shops will gouge the price of a gem you could purchase from a science-y rock store for less.

Next mentioned are glass crystal points from China. I don’t like the hyper focus on China because geez, it’s becoming yellow scare shorthand for “cheap, worthless, comes a hundred a penny”. Yes, a lot comes from China (it’s a big country, in case no one has noticed) but still, it bugs me. Moving on, buying glass when you thought you were getting crystal certainly sucks. The tell-tale sign, as noted on the piece, is that they’re perfectly clear and quite big but quite cheap. A crystal like that would sell for hundreds, possibly thousands, not ten dollars. If they have fractures, they look odd because they were made with a cloth and a ball peen hammer.

There’s also a common man-made fracture made, as illustrated by the article, by heating the glass and dipping it in room temp water (or cold water), which makes these odd fractures. I think I gotten one myself because it was thrown in when a purchase was made at the Maryland State Fair. It was a clear fake because there was glue on top to keep the “stone” fastened to the holder. Remember, I got it for free, mainly because it wouldn’t sell and the seller wanted to make their payload lighter when it was time to pack up shop.

Here is another “[fake crystal] from China” entry. Y’know, I know China is seen as the king of fakes, partially because of Western orientalism but ummmm, China produces authentic stones as well. Like jade. Not everything in China is fake and other folks in different nations can make dupes as well. It’s not like China (and to a further extent, Nigeria) holds the world population of scammers and frauds. Cons exist everywhere. As for stones, I’ve seen fakies coming straight from New York and LA. Yes, China can make passing fakes but the hyperfocus on them is a bit irksome.

This entry was about colored crystal points. This reminds me of being told once that sapphire is not actually a brilliant blue unless scientifically doctored. Given the picture on the article, it can show how the “quartz” actually is colored glass. If the quartz can remind you of a kitschy glass kitchen bowl, it’s probably fake. That and if you take a close look at the surface, the surface is probably perfect. Crystals, given their creation, are not perfect, especially at a close look. There are teeny ridges and if you look super close, indentures and fragments. And no bubbles.

Finally a fake gem not from China. Here we have fake smoky quartz from the United States, namely Arkansas (and noticed for the US, a state or location gets made. It doesn’t care what region the fakie came from in China, just the fact that it did, which creates the illusion that all of China pumps out fake stuff when really it’s just certain parts). As pictured on the article, it’s a clear quartz that went through a radiation treatment to give the stark black smoky color. If the color is claimed to come from a heat treatment, it’s a lie. On the article, there is a side-by-side analysis of a man made smoky quartz and a real one as well as a short list of how to tell the difference, which is pretty on point.

Afterwards, you have polished quartz being sold as natural. Goodness, here’s the thing about natural, raw quartz: it doesn’t look “perfect”. Natural quartz have sharp, clean lines instead of dull edges and polished crystals are often cut flat on the base. There is also a short list of how to tell the difference between the two, also very good.

There are certainly more features of false stones and how to tell on the article, I would recommend reading, this is pretty much a very cohesive article for when you buy online but also when you purchase in person. Crystals are bought for their qualities as created by their formation, it is not the same to use false stones or materials such as glass. Metaphysics is a lot more than simply the “power of thought”, authentic materials are important.

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