Category: Dreams

EEOC Update: Surprisingly quiet for once. Last time everything was getting this quiet, my apartment got raided and trashed by the Baltimore City Police.

Onwards to the column!

It’s Ask Black Witch, where readers send me questions. Good questions are appreciated, bad questions are eviscerated, let’s get started:

Hey, I have dreamed before about an old lady who gave me the book of shadows and told me to read it and I remember me doing a lot of spells and go through the book, and I have never ever seen the book or even touched it and on every page of the book there were a lot of pentagrams, and till now I still don’t remember the face of the old lady, So what is that supposed to mean?

– ­Amira A.

Alright, unfortunately, I didn’t get more info than just this sole letter (it’s semi my fault because I didn’t do the usual “write back to person to get more info”, I just replied to her comment where she first posted this question) so I can’t really make any major definites. For example:

  • Have you ever had a background in studying Paganism and/or witchcraft?
  • Did you watch a scary movie or such before sleeping?
  • What culture are you from?

Etc, etc, stuff like that. Otherwise, I would just simply rule it as the mind just putting a movie on as you sleep, so to speak. Not everything in dreams mean some big and major thing. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

The fact the book didn’t have any writing, just pentagrams, kind of means your brain was trying to scare you a bit, it doesn’t 100% have to mean the unknown because while the pentagram is an occultic symbol, it isn’t inherently spooky and evil. Just seen that way due to Abrahamic (Christianity, Judaism, Islam) cultural beliefs we all live with.

Basically, it could be an anxiety dream with a fear of the unknown buuuuuuut it could also just be a regular dream that’s really, really weird…because brains are weird.

The Establishment (Afro-Punk) Version

Lord, I saw this on my twitterfeed a few weeks back, someone had a dream about Janelle Monae and they thought it was yet another one of their “layered, complex, and seemingly random” dreams (I seriously quoted that, copy and paste, no edit). Monae was a Marvel comic-styled superhero. Not something mega far-fetched, mate.

Y’see, I don’t mean to single this one person out but he resembles a people that I all too commonly come across as a dream interpreter, the my-dreams-are-soooooooooooo-deep-Freud-would-have-to-name-a-new-theory-after-me-just-to-only-partly-understand-it type. Or in other words, the “speshul snowflaek” type.

Ah, special snowflakes, they think they’re so unique. The term stems from the childhood chatter from adults that everyone is as unique and special as a snowflake because no two flakes are alike (although I am pretty determined to prove that wrong, I have been known to staaaare at snowflakes for hours on my black gloves, mentally cataloguing whatever I see until I get a match. No luck yet.) and hence are comparable to people, who have “unique” experiences and lives. Now, I’m all for making people feel special and happy. The problem is, is that this creates a sense of over-inflated self-esteem for those doing absolutely nothing but existing, hence the term “speshul snowflaek”, which is written in such a fashion that reflects the moronic qualities these people generally hold about themselves. Nothing is wrong with being unique but not when it’s for something not very unique. For example, this blog is unique in subject matter (albeit that is starting to dwindle in itself expectedly because other Black Pagan blogs are coming about) but not in the fact that it is a blog. There are millions of blogs on the ‘net. A special snowflake is a person who makes something so common or trivial seems grandiose, kinda like wanting applause for getting open a difficult jar of pickles. They are an annoyance to dream interpreters everywhere.

The mind is a very intricate place, granted. It is woven together from genes, experiences and personal revelations or lack thereof. If the mind were a simple box to tinker in, psychology would not be the expansive and perplexing field that it is today and mental problems would very rarely, if ever, reach to the point of debilitating without the aid of any pill or expensive session with a therapist. Mental institutions would be unheard of and most movies that talk about insanity would look like the very pieces of utter nonsense that most of them actually are. Dreams are the free (if you don’t count lucid dreaming) expressions of that mind and has its many symbols and deeper web of meanings so yes it’s going to be pretty baffling at first, uneducated glance. The reality is though, thanks to many centuries dedicated to understanding the mind inside and out, the mind is still a perplexing state but not nearly as much as it was 200+ years ago. Dreams are indeed layered and complex and seemingly random but seriously, you just described practically everyone, excluding those who may have a strong case of alexithymia, a disorder which gives those affected logical, rational dreams (as in a dream about a bowl of cereal is just a dream about a bowl of cereal) due to lack of imagination. I can tell you with honesty and experience from doing dream interpretations for others: no one has the weirdest or quirkiest dreams to rule them all. All dreams can be off the wall in their own respects, there is nary a dream that stands out to me with any “whoa” factor and I’ve handled hundreds. Not. One.

But still that does not stop a horde of people who claim so hard that they are indeed that speshul snowflaek, that one person with a mind so deep and amazing that they are indeed an enigma. An enigma like none other. That all who experience the intricate labyrinth that is their mind, they will marvel in response at the amazement of what their expansive brain can drum up during their mortal slumber…even if it is Janelle Monae in a cape drawn Marvel comics style – which I think can be spotted online somewhere, check fyeahjanellemonae tumblrs first.

There’s nothing wrong with taking fascination into dreams and the mind, I wouldn’t be doing any of this stuff otherwise, but please don’t think that you’re the uniquest of them all to walk the earth. If you have been raised in a culture that is acknowledged by someone in the psych field or psych-savvy over the course of history, I can probably explain away your dream with the help of a good dream dictionary and some background in both psychology and sociology. The mind is a puzzle but every puzzle, no matter how unsolvable, has pieces to them. Even if they don’t fit together perfectly or something is missing, they have something to put it all together with. That’s minds and dreams for you.

Got crazy dreams? So do I. So does Janelle Monae.  So does your best friend. Obama too. We all sleep. We all dream. We all have dreams that make us sit up and go, “Wait, what?” They’re going to vary among us because of who we are and our backgrounds and some of the symbols are going to be personal to us because they affect us differently. Think about it: if Obama, Monae and I dream about the White House, a concert stage or a forest we’re gonna say something different each because of our separate statures in life – but they can be explained somehow or related to something. It just depends on how far one’s mind can reach to understand the links.

Don’t be a speshul snowflaek. Just be you. You dream. They’re weird. It happens. You’re a person with a functional mind so definitely feel free to mention your dreams and write them down and stuff because it’s very helpful in you getting a better understanding of yourself. But please, know that you’re not the only one who dreams of their favorite vocalist as a superhero. It happens all the time, trust me.

I know it’s not strictly enforced (because it never had to be) but actually I have a three question monthly quota. Since this is the first month I’ve actually gone over, I’ll answer all questions. I keep the quota around just in case I get a slew of questions but since this is really a first, I have no issue answering everything. Same for the upcoming months unless there are more and more question filled months but I provide warning first. In short, all is spiffy.

I have been cursed or hexed to not have or keep money. What can I do to break the hex or curse? Or what can I do to attract success or money to me.
– Louis R.

Usually when people come to me saying they’ve been cursed, I’m a bit of a skeptic but only because I’ve seen many people come to me claiming to be cursed when really it could be their own downfall or a general downfall that’s been going around (i.e. bad economy, illness, stress) and not a curse. The general rule of thumb is that the more developed a nation, the likelier that someone has not been cursed really but got some bad luck going but even then you have to stratify that to socio-economic levels and environments (in other words, if you’re upper class and fairly wasp? It’s probably bad luck, mate) so still people can get hit with a hex but it’s not common. Improbable but not impossible, basically.

Now as for Louis, I can’t tell for sure if you’ve been actually jinxed out of money, I’d have to hear more to be able to rule out the fact we are currently in a pretty sluggish economy and as of this writing, with US unemployment at 9% and Black unemployment at 16% and even big businesses are feeling the brunt of the economy. That can have an easy chain effect on a person’s spending and finance. Also, hexes don’t come from nowhere (no one really hexes a random person just for the screw of it, that’s mad rare) so if it’s not really traceable (as in, without doubt. Not, “Well, I got that weird coworker…”), it could be unfortunate circumstances that has fallen upon your head. I’m just throwing that out there to make sure you know what you should look for roughly when it comes to figuring out if it’s bad luck or bad juju.

How are you hexed out of keeping money? Surprise bills? Things keep breaking that are in constant need of repair (and shouldn’t be)? Mugged every time you step off your front step? Banks constantly go, “’Paychecks’? What’s that?” Magick takes the path of least resistance usually but when it comes to hexes, they can throw in wrenches like none other. For example: Say you have been magickally knocked in the pockets. It could express itself by the bank losing track of say, your direct deposit and no one’s been notified. You don’t have money (that you honestly should) in your bank account, which you seriously did not know and so you spend like normal, which hits you with overdraft fees and not-so-nice letters from the banks, possible not-so-nice letters from bill collectors and you try to check into it but every human on a computer is saying all is fine and you screwed up (even though it was an error in the system, either human or technical) and because the blame is pinned squarely on you, ya gotta fork up some cash to remedy (which, remember, you don’t have because of your status of direct deposit went awry) and that all snowballs into a giant headache, to put the ending nicely. These are all situations that could and has happened to people in the past: banks making mistakes on accounts, programs have an error, unknown overdraft fees get accumulated, banks going “Not me” even when it is squarely their fault, etc etc. They’ve all happened before in human history of modern finances. But it’s quite a queer probability all of that happening at once and if it’s pretty sudden as well as have a super hard time being corrected, as if obstacles keep falling onto your path.

If what I described above sounds pretty close to your situation, then yep, you just might be right, someone’s put a fix on you. How to solve it? Depends on your background and how good you are with faith and spirituality. If you are particularly spiritual and part of a particular religion (i.e. Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, etc etc), then generally you’ll be able to find some prayer that’s meant for protection from evil and harm as well as for prosperity and good fortune. Faith would seriously do some good now because prayers and rituals can’t be done without heart in them. Salt is useful for neutralizing but I’m not at the point where I’m going to tell you to sprinkle it about (and if you do, don’t do it on your lawn, it’ll kill the grass). Hexes are spells just like any other, they come in different kinds and thus must be handled differently. Dragon’s Blood (it’s a resin and can come in the form of oil, incense and even a bath solution) is good for uncrossing and for protection. Patchouli and Jade are great for finance and success. I’m giving beginner’s grade stuff because I don’t know your background in magick and I don’t want to suggest anything that has a very good chance of screwing up if you don’t know what you’re doing. Also since I don’t know the nature of the potential jinx, I can’t really subscribe anything more particular than that. Believe it or not visual mediation may also best aid you in severing ties from your hex (that should have prayer woven in there somehow because you can’t do it on your own) by visualizing actual dark ropes you are severing mentally.

Granted this is if all your money troubles stems from a hex, remember. If life is still pretty crappy no matter what you do, it could be life throwing you a hardball that’s completely striking you out. Hopefully things will work out.

Hi, I have read your blog and seen you on facebook… My question is that I done a prosperity spell last week visualizing that I make sales at my telemarketing job, it worked the first time  ( I made a sale)  but the second time nothing happened. Strangely I got called 2 days later about a job offer working for a company that I love and a career I love! I don’t have the job yet because it opens later this month but it seemed very strange that all the sudden after the ritual they called me… just wondering.
– Olivia L.

How astonishing! You have my first name. I would say definitely that it was probably the ritual helping you out to do bigger and better things. Now for the reason why something happened the first and not the second time: Magick, not always like the movies, does not promise you’ll get it in each and every time. Plus the spell could have bundled up energy from what could have been the second good sale in a row and become a big opportunity altogether, which is forever better. I hope you’re happy in your new position!

I happen to know a couple of these ‘preachers’ that frequent the buses down in this county, and it does annoy me, but what can I do about it?
– Torrence B.

This question is in reference to the recent post Get Off the Bus. My suggestion is either get some good headphones to blast them out, debate with them until they note their own fallacies and shut up or you might just have to deal with it until they get off or you get off. It’s not easy dealing with people like that, I’m certain, but sometimes you can’t do something or may not have the will to do it. I wouldn’t upfront suggest debate because not everyone has an extensive amount of religious knowledge and it can be a battle of personalities too so if you don’t have a dominant personality or just an expression of strong yet silent will, it could put you in a bad spot because these people don’t really respond or dialogue, they just think it’s the Devil in you making you speak out and shut them down so they may simply grow more persistent and shouting matches help no one. If you have the knowledge and background to flip whatever they say on its ear, perhaps go for it because I can say for myself it does make them pipe down but if you don’t have what it takes, that’s okay. It’s not okay that these people take free license to be total bigoted douchebags who don’t know the difference between spreading the word of God and forcing it down people’s throats but your well-being has to go before their empty-headed ways. Informing the bus driver may not do anything except get you scolded and that’s not good. So your best bet is to get a good Mp3 player with nice headphones and slip them on when they start yappin’.

Hi and nice to meet you. I come from a very strong Christian background so this is a very big step for me it’s just god irritates me so you know. By the way this may be a rather long message but please read it I am desperate to get an answer I have tried so many other people and not got a reply. So please let me tell you a bit about my self so this will all cover the question I need to ask.

I hate how I look I have a big nose and thin lips and puffy eyes and I am always either pink or red and I am very prone to spots.

I also look a lot like my mum and we aren’t on the best of terms right now so I would prefer to look more like my dad. Recently I have met a girl who I imagine would look just like my dad’s daughter if there was no interference from my mum. It’s also a rather funny story actually because my friend looks a lot like her dad who she does not like and I also look a lot like her mum so it’s really weird. So I was thinking what if I had been born in her body and she had been born in mine so we would still be recognised as the same person who we are now. so obviously it would be very difficult as you can probably imagine to find spell that would have the power to do that so I was thinking about trying to make my own spell or maybe you could give me a spell hopefully but if not I will try and make my own but another question is is would a spell be able to change the past because I’m not just talking about a body switching spell I am talking about a spell that could actually change the past!

I don’t want to be a different person I still want to be me just to have been born in another person’s body. I also don’t really know if making up my own spell would work so I guess that’s three questions altogether and I really hope you can help me. Hope I hear from you soon
– Jershua

It sounds like two interconnected questions to me.

I read your question over several times (It was a little hard reading, mate. I figured the British prided their language more than us Americans) and I’m going to be quite frank and start with the bottom and go up. You say you don’t want to be a different person but you actually do. Your whole letter bleeds with that intention because in your mind, you think you can escape your mom (and ultimately the bad relationship with her) if you were just in another physical body or to switch up the past. You could switch bodies with anyone from your friend to your next door neighbor to the Prime Minister, but keep the same mind and you’ll always be tortured because your problem is in your mind, not on your face. You could cast a spell to change the past but I can pretty much assure you what you’re asking for is waaaaaay beyond your skill set and most likely will forever be since you’re tipping into high magick and that’s no walk in the park. I have major difficulties with it and I’m a practiced Witch of nearly ten years. Besides, by changing the past to change the present and the future, how do you know the wheel of fortune will spin in your favour the second time around?

Now, since you would have someone to switch bodies with, your good friend who doesn’t like her dad, how do you know she would want to switch places with you? Can’t exactly pull a “body snatchers” thing, especially not on an unsuspecting and new friend. And how do you know you would be happier in her life – actually, body since changing bodies doesn’t promise a life switch – than you are in yours and that she vice versa? It just sounds a little one sided in your question. Even if you two equally do want to switch bodies (but not minds), what happens if one of you want to switch back?

Even in the vastness of magick, possibilities can come with limits and things happen for a reason. It’s clear you want to separate yourself from the hurt and that makes total sense but this really is not the way. You don’t like your physical features because of who they relate to so there’s nothing you can do really that would truly heal your problem on the physical level except to deal with them on the mental and emotional level where they reside. Work on whatever problems you have with your mother because running won’t solve anything. Talk to a counselor, therapist or someone that you trust to help iron out the problems. That’s the only way to solve this issue. The problems you have with your body are simply red flags to a deeper issue that need far more attention than the shape of your nose and lips. And try some Witch Hazel solution for your skin, it takes care of the red very well and keep spots at bay with consistent use.

I apologize if this is a strange question, but I was browsing and found your site, and was curious if you had an answer for me.   First off, let me say that I am not a pagan, nor am I very familiar with pagan customs; but, I felt that if I wanted to gain some understanding, I’ve got nothing to lose in asking and searching.

So, as for my question:

I have been having an interesting recurring dream.  Well… sort of.  I’ve had an interesting recurring “visage” lately.  Every couple of nights or so, I drift off to sleep and I see this girl.  She has lovely features, but never says a word.  In my dreams I often walk with her and talk to her.  (The setting is always a moonlit glade or stream).  She simply smiles and listens until I wake up.

Well about a month ago, I had the most peculiar thing happen.  I was laying, staring up at my ceiling in the dark early morning.  I think I must have only been half awake, but I could feel a presence in the room with me.  And just for the strangest moment, I felt a cold but calming touch on my face…. and (this is going to sound really bizarre) I saw the girl’s smiling face in a glimpse and she kissed my cheek… I think.  As I startled awake, the image and feeling was gone.

I know I must sound completely insane, or that it’s just my “hormones” running away with me.  It’s for this very reason I haven’t told ANYONE about this.  I can’t explain how, what or why, but this being whatever she is, feels so real to me.   I am currently happily in a relationship, and yet the “girl” doesn’t seem to care.  What’s really strange is that, being with her feels natural…  It doesn’t feel in any way conflicting with my current relationship…  Which makes me feel a little guilty.   

Again, I know I must sound crazy.  Please forgive the strangeness of my question..  but I am just curious if you, as a witch, had any sort of insight for me.

Truly and sincerely yours,

If I had a nickel for every “This is a strange question”, “I’ve an interesting dream” or “I must sound crazy”, I would never worry about money again.

Have you ever thought that this dream could be crafted by your own mind because sometimes a cigar is just a cigar? I don’t know how long you’ve been having this dream versus how long you’ve been dating the girl you’re currently with but it sounds like you’re just having a happy dream. It doesn’t mean that you don’t love your girlfriend, it doesn’t mean you’ve gone nuts, it could just mean that you’re just dreaming. Even the half-asleep part, which is probably you already being halfway in the dream state hence touches and things like that feel real.

Nothing to feel guilty over until you put more focus on the dream girl than the real girl or even worse, try to turn the real girl into the dream girl. People can have reoccurring dreams of good things just like they can have reoccurring dreams of bad things. So go with it unless things take a turn for the worse.

That’s all the Ask Black Witch for this month! Want to ask a question? There are various ways to contact me! Everything is on the About Me/Contact Me page but you can also use the Ask Black Witch Submission Form on the right or tweet me @thisblackwitch and/or using the #askblackwitch hashtag. ABW questions are answered on the last Friday of every month.

The Establishment (Afro-Punk) Version

Dreams are very weird things. Anything can happen in them and they’re not easy to interpret always because the human mind is really complex. As a dream interpreter, I find dreams absolutely amazing because the mental landscape is far vast and express more than the physical landscape a person could express themselves in. Dreams may be complicated but once with a grasp of how they (and the brain and the mind) works, they’re pretty interesting and helpful.

I have a set list of protocol that I’ve developed when I was doing dream interpretation on that I generally follow. I usually ask to interpret dreams if someone throws one out there (haven’t done it often as of late because I have little time to dedicate) and first interpret it as is, not asking for additional info about the dream. If the dream procures something pretty sensitive, I tell the person maybe they should contact me or the other way around because I couldn’t care less if the recipient doesn’t believe in this stuff, no one likes havin’ their business put out there (then again, if you work my nerves and still don’t care about secrecy, I have no issue with pullin all the skeletons out of the closet and throwing them up like an exhibition). Now, there have been times I just jumped out there and interpreted a dream without permission just because I was excited enough about flaunting my skills and normally people don’t mind until I trip over a nerve and all of a sudden, reading over.

I remember the one time I did that, it actually was how I got started on FM as the dream interpreter. Some kid posted that he had a weird dream, didn’t know what it meant. Me and my over-zealous self just upped and interpreted the whole dream from top to bottom right there on the thread. Hey, others were throwing out guesses, I figured I’d be fine. Well, after a day or so the kid responded, pretty embarrassed. He remarked, “Dang, puttin all my business out there.” On one hand, I was pretty proud because it means I was accurate. On the other hand, I ain’t mean to do him like CNN, hence why I don’t just jump out there anymore. Instead I would try to ask or let people come to me (and oh they did, wasn’t long before I had to make rules about that). I don’t get as many requests as I did prior – a good thing because working too hard on too many requests  is what did me in as a dream interpreter. I would be so tired that the interpretations would start to become wrong or waaaaay left field. So that was the end (kinda) of that.

Dreams are on one hand fairly complicated but on the other hand pretty simplex if you know what to look for.

Not every dream is some deep, mystical, intricate fabrication of the mind that is incredibly metaphorical and completely perplex. Dreams actually do differ based on race, religion, age, culture, social impact from their environment, gender and even significant life alterations (i.e. being blind or restricted to a wheelchair) and it’s my job as the interpreter to see through all of that to find the real meaning of the dream as seamlessly as possible. Not an impossible task, just a arduous one sometimes because, well, sometimes I don’t feel like looking up what a light bulb flickering inside of a synagogue with Arabic scriptures being highlighted on dirty, crumbled walls while a ballet recital is going on that no one is noticing means when dreamt by some atheist who believes that all religion is a very intricate sham that takes advantage of the feeble-minded and hence hasn’t set foot in anything spiritual in eons and is repulsed by the fine arts. If only it were that easy to say, “’Eh, it is what you think it is. Laters,” but then I wouldn’t have any recipients to help out now would I? Some dreams have meaning, some dreams is just your brain filing away memories of the day or maybe your brain decided to take a sharp turn into Stupidtown for a night and rented a room. The best way to tell the difference is the symbolism being used and how likely a string of logic can be woven from what is discovered. There have been dreams where I said, “It’s nothing, honestly.”

Not every dream is worth looking at because some dreams are simply loony or will just tell you the same old crap you already know, it just tells me how much of it is on your mind. That could be noteworthy but people can be worrywarts too. I don’t interpret all my dreams because I’m quite lazy and I don’t feel that every dream is a message from the divine. It could be a joke script from your mind instead and what’s the point at looking at those? Dreams can help you better yourself but that’s not the point of dreams, to be an incredibly cryptic self-help kit.

Some dreams are worth looking at though because some dreams can be a cryptic self-help kit in the way that some dreams do have meaning. Dreams can be very useful in that they can provide insight or raise red flags that might have otherwise gone ignored on the conscious level. I know I personally have gone to the dentist because I had a dream about a particular tooth going gray and decaying to find out that I needed some important dental work done because something went unnoticed and could have been a real problem in the future. I could have interpreted the dream as an anxiety dream but there was something about the feel of the dream and how it played out that convinced me it was about a real matter and I followed up on it. To find all dreams as pointless I find to be very pointless in itself because it would be stupid to assume that people can note their own problems or that the conscious mind is thorough enough to handle everything that comes its way, suppressing and forgetting nothing.

Not all hard-to-interpret dreams are prophetic dreams or actual messages from God. Sheesh, if I had a nickel for every person who thought that God was speaking to them because they dreamt of walking a lamb in the desert and strolling right into a burning town filled with the most hysterical people you can find. Sometimes hard-to-interpret dreams are just that, hard to interpret. People aren’t easy little boxes that you can open up and tinker in so some dreams are very complicated because the general dream dictionary(ies) may not have a good enough interpretation for them. It doesn’t mean the dream is impossible to understand – for all we know, there isn’t anything in particular to understand – it just requires more work (or less).

It does bug me when someone tells me their dreams, it’s usually preceded with a “My dreams are weird.” No, they’re not. I have interpreted tons of dreams; yours most likely won’t take home the Weirdo Award. Dreams are just that, dreams, hence they don’t run the same as a linear movie always. Dreams are pretty abstract usually, which is why everything in a dream is called a symbol because most likely it’s gonna represent something else. There’s nothing weird about dreams, even if it includes some of the most taboo elements of someone’s culture, it’s still not weird. It can be weird if a person doesn’t dream but even that is rather explanatory in itself but it’s also something people want to take the Weirdo Award home for: not dreaming.

I dunno, maybe people think it’s so cool to not be of the norm (I’m kinda laughing because those who say they don’t want to be of the norm generally are the people who fight hard to keep it) that they can’t dream and omigosh they’re so different and unique and would probably make for an awesome villain for the next Inception film and stuff like that.

Ha, no.

There are different stages that the brain partakes in during sleep, some stages producing more memorable dreams than others but basically a complete and total rarity to not at all dream a single whit. We all dream at least 200-400 dreams a night as the brain goes through the different stages between alpha, beta and theta (I won’t bore you with what those are – until I start running out of content for this blog/column, then this place is gonna look like a textbook) and we basically remember about three or four dreams out of all of that, particularly the ones as we were going into deeper sleep, REM (Rapid Eye Movement) and the two hours right before we wake up naturally from sleep. Those patterns can be disturbed however if the dreamer is stressing out in real life or isn’t getting enough sleep, among other factors. It’s not terribly unique to not have dreams, it’s even happened to me, just generally a flag to something more important.

Dream interpretation is really fun to me. I’ve always been intrigued by psychology and metaphysics so it just makes perfect sense to me to get into that because the human mind is really interesting and I think that dreams are way more than just a mental slideshow of nonsense as we sleep. Not all dreams are poignant tales of caution or of the dreamer itself but they are remarkable in what they tell. Dream interpretation isn’t as hard as one would think, just keep an open mind and a good grasp of psychology and sociology for the harder stuff but just get a dream dictionary (here’s some recommended ones on Black Witch) and keep a dream journal. I still interpret dreams for others but I’ve mainly been keeping them to offers of divination giveaways and even if I did get dreams to interpret, they would have to situate themselves to a spot on Ask Black Witch.

Hello there, Black Witch, I have 2 questions to ask of you. 1. Do I have to believe in Gods & Goddesses in order to become a Wiccan/Witch?  Not too long ago, I dreamt about a letter K and a yellow pentacle and I’ve been trying to figure out what it means. 2. Do you have any suggestions where I can find this out?

For question 1: Do you have to believe in God & Goddesses to be a Wiccan or Witch? Yes and no. To be Wiccan (because Wiccan and Witch are two different things), a religion, you do have to honor a God and Goddess. You can called them Lord and Lady if you like but while it’s the norm to work with the Gods and Goddesses, you don’t have to set them as number one exactly for you can work strictly with elementals, stones and nature itself. You may hit some rough spots as a Wiccan – for example the monthly esbats (full moon salutations) which honours the goddess. You can still honour the moon as it is indeed part of nature but just know you might have to get a pantheon if you plan to be Wiccan. Since Witchcraft is a craft and not a religion, you’re freer to choose whether you want to work with Gods and Goddesses or not but still, know you may run into spells or rituals that require you to use a deity of some shape or form. Even if you don’t want to believe in Gods and Goddesses, you still have to believe in something for Witchcraft and Wicca, regardless which path you choose.

For question 2: You dreamt of the letter K and a yellow pentacle and want to know what it means. That’s easy. I always use books for my dream interpreting needs. The best books I can refer to you are:

1,001 Dreams by Jack Altman
The Element Encyclopedia of 20,000 Dreams by Theresa Chang

Also on this one website I stumbled across, there was this awesome supplemental dictionary online that’s now gone – but I copied and pasted everything! Here it is, provided by Rapidshare!  I hope you figure out that dream!

General Question: What is Ophiuchus and am I still my original sign?

This isn’t entirely a specific question but about three weeks back, there was all this chatter on Twitter about the so-called “13th zodiac” and how it’s totally changed the face of astrology forever because apparently we’re using points in the sky that hasn’t been accurate since pretty much Christ was alive. Cue twitter-dom schizz outs and the mysterious Ophiuchus becoming a worldwide trending topic. My timeline and mentions remained pretty calm but apparently it was War of the Worlds for others. I didn’t know about any of this really until a reader on my timeline mentioned it and linked to this, detailing what was going on and she was about to ask me.

Ophiuchus is pretty familiar to me because I remember hearing about it on MysticWicks, a pagan forum I was part of, back in…uhhhh…2006. Getting into astrology and its many forms, I have heard of this zodiac and the star shift itself but because I was younger and totally not into Vedic (Sidereal) astrology, I stuffed Ophiuchus into the back of my mind. So imagine my surprise when I see that little guy trending in 2011 and people screeching over it.

Since I didn’t remember much of Ophiuchus (and didn’t study basically any of it when I was aware of it), I did what a person in my position could do: seek out folks and info that did know what they were talking about and that meant marching back to MysticWicks (why’d I left it? Dunno) where I reliably found those old conversations and I think a couple new ones. Read up on them:

“Born in April, But I’m Actually a Pisces”
“Precision in Astrology”
“Sidereal Astrologers – None Here?”
“Glossary for the Astrologically Impaired” (I think this is awesome.)

Informative, no? Here’s more recent ones about the whole situation from wordpress blog Practicing Astrologer:

“Oh No, It’s Ophiuchus Again!”
“What Astronomers Don’t Get About Astrology”

I usually love hearing or seeing people get into astrology or any other form of esotericism because that’s basically how everyone starts but I get concerned when it draws into a fever pitch because I get the strong feeling a lot of people are probably missing the point somewhere. I still identify as Cancer because I’m a tropical astrologer, I use the Western astrology system, not sidereal so I can still blissfully ignore Ophiuchus happily and the world not turn to flames.

Because I am a curious lolita (check the links of interest if you don’t know what a lolita is), I decided to get my Vedic (sidereal) chart casted. This is what came out:

My Vedic Natal Chart

Now, this is what I’m accustomed to seeing (click to view a clearer picture):

My Tropical Natal Chart

Don’t look the same, do they? They shouldn’t either because they’re not the same system, just like Chinese and Western astrology are different systems but they still can be applied to the same person. In Vedic astrology, I’m a sun in Gemini, moon in Leo, ascendant in Virgo. In tropical (Western) astrology, I’m sun in Cancer, moon in Virgo, ascendant in Virgo. In Chinese astrology, I’m a Fire Hare. I’m still me, just with different perspectives applied and each of those perspectives have their own rules of interpretation as well as their own faults, no one is more “right” than the other. And there’s plenty of other astrology systems that I didn’t even mention (but will once people start freaking out at them).

In other words: If you thought your whole life you were an Aries, you still are, no need to panic. Western astrology – as far as I know – still hasn’t changed.

Let’s Dream!

I remember way back when I had my old dream interpretation thread at the message boards. It was my little carved out spot in the High Command section of the boards. I honestly thought the thread was going to die but it turned out to be a big success. I really liked the thread, it reached into I think 50-something pages. My rules were no profane sex dreams, especially involving any of the members of Fort Minor (Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park, Styles of Beyond, Lupe Fiasco, Demigodz, Holly Brook, Bobo of Cypress Hill, etc etc etc), be as clear as possible and if they didn’t want the dream interpretation to be public, just say so and I’ll private message (PM) them the interpretation.

I really did get a lot of people and even a few regulars. From the beginning, I managed to handle questions about dreams from both the psychological side and the scientific side with little issue and even help people. I wasn’t afraid to tell people to seek out a counselor if they needed one – quite a few did – and I could deal with anyone ready to start trouble, which thankfully was very little.

Always would I try to make sure to answer in the orderly time period of within a day and keep the interpretation as non-kooky as possible; I didn’t want to come off looking like a hack and I didn’t want the interpretations to be useless. My regular users started to get the hang of mentioning if the dream was reoccurring, a nightmare or if it could have any real world relation, which did help flesh out a better reading but if I felt the issues the reading would uncover were too deep, I would PM the dreamer in question.

What I liked of the dream thread was the near anonymity of the internet. Since Fort was a themed site, I wouldn’t be able to pick out much about these kids (well, not all were kids but that’s how I refer to a group of people sometimes) that I could use for the reading and I definitely didn’t participate in the message board enough to know them well enough to dredge any info that could make me look otherworldly and all knowing. As a matter of fact, I wouldn’t even really look at their screen names except to figure out who I’m talking to. I often didn’t know the querent’s gender, age, life or background, I just interpreted the dream for what it was and that’s it. If the dreamer didn’t understand or thought I was wrong, I wanted them to say so. How am I supposed to learn from my mistakes if I don’t know I made any? If I were wrong, I would ask how and see if I could right things.

Did anyone from Fort Minor ever use my dream thread? Nope. I haven’t even a clue if they ever peered into it or even knew that it existed. I always wonder if any of them at least scanned through a couple pages and what they thought of it. I dunno but still it’s something to ponder. At least Lupe Fiasco or Mike Shinoda – don’t ask me why, just seem like something they’d have an interest in.

My dream interpretation thread started back in ’06 but lasted a year because I began to burn out. I should have save the pages of my thread but I didn’t know of the existence of FreezePage or anything like that then. Combined with my laziness, the thread is pretty much gone for good. It does kinda suck and I do regret not saving it because it was a very nice piece of work and the best demonstration I’ve had of public divination on record. Not anymore.

I had started to burn out around the mid year of the thread, I think. My responses weren’t as fast and correct as they used to be and I was getting headaches constantly. I thought I could cure it by doing sabbaticals but nope, I was really becoming run down. This was terrible because I knew the more raggedy I would be, the more incorrect my readings would be and the more incorrect my readings would be, the less valid my interpretations would become. That’s not good. Instead, I opted to leave the thread alone after handling the last requests and letting it die on its own. There was still some chatter in the thread but I never read any of it since they weren’t dream requests.

It was nice when people came to me discussing dream superstitions such as a demon sitting on your chest and how it was actually sleep paralysis because the brain woke up before the body did. I loved those chats because I liked discussing how dreams worked, how they’re not all rubbish and they’re not all decipherable by Freud. Holy snickerdoodles would people think everything could be interpreted by the Freudian school of thought or that all of Freud’s interpretations revolved around sex. I personally like Carl Jung’s ideas of dream interpretation which uses the archetypes but I make sure to keep an open mind. Dreams can vary because of who the dreamer is.

Dreams aren’t very one-size-fits-all, the interpretation could be modified drastically by the dreamer’s background, culture and way of thinking. One good example is on the Fort Minor dream thread, I would frequently come across many dreams involving the members of Linkin Park (since many Fort Minor fans were Linkin Park fans as well). I once had gotten a dream request where the dreamer was choking Chester, one of the members. The dreamer was very scared because Chester was his favorite member, never would he do something so violent and harmful to Chester. Thankfully the person’s dream did not refer to hidden motives to murder but a suppression of creative energy and appeasing those that the querent doesn’t like. Chester is known to be quite an eccentric livewire and the act of strangulation generally means forcibly retaining something whether it is emotion, truth or facets of personality, usually to bend into the norms. Basically, the dreamer was forcing back his own individuality for social approval. Before long, I learned to have a special definition for each member of Linkin Park because they were just as acceptable symbols as dreaming up a sink or a bear because for these dreamers, every member of the band has a special meaning. And with these specially created definitions, I really gave accurate readings because usually they would hit the nail right on the head.

Though I am a dream interpreter, I don’t always interpret my own dreams. Some dreams simply don’t need to be interpreted and some dreams make me go, “Ooookaaay, not lookin’ into that one.” I have accidentally done lucid dreaming (being in control of your dream) and interpreted the dream while dreaming. As in, I could see a house being hit by a tornado and instead of getting out of the way and going somewhere safe (since I can feel in my dreams), I just stood there and went, “Ok, that’s a tornado, it refers to emotional turmoil and it’s hitting a house which is in reference to me and – Oh crap!” Boy, I’m one weird cookie.

And speaking of being in control of your dream – a wonderful friend of mine had taken me to see the movie Inception. It was a terrific movie, I really recommend seeing it! As a dream interpreter, I really found the movie enjoyable! Now that positive review is out the way, I now have to say that Inception was just that, a movie. There are not people (not that I’m aware of) who creep into your dreams to sow ideas or steal information. It is a wonderful fabrication of the power of ideas and the intricate depths of the mind via dreams but it is just a piece of entertainment, not an instruction video. I’ll write a piece on movies and magick/metaphysics later but this is my little blurb. Onward with the remainder of the column:

I recommend that if you’re going to write down your dream, do it right when you wake up. Have a journal or a tape recorder nearby. If I’m not mistaken, the average person forgets 90% of their dream within 10 minutes and you only remember the last four to five dreams you had that night. When I jot down my dreams, I would keep my eyes closed or completely covered so not to forget any of the dream by being exposed to light. Just write, don’t worry about if it makes sense, just write it all down and review it later. I use dream dictionaries (which I will showcase in The Arts: Samhain Edition) to help interpret my dream but as I have mentioned, I don’t always interpret my dreams. Sometimes I just keep them in the back of my mind and if I have a reoccurring dream, I just note that it happened and put a little more effort into working on what it’s referring to. Not all dreams have to be interpreted but they are very useful insight into what is going on underneath the surface.

One kind of person that I would come across sometimes would claim they never dream. Why they sometimes tote it as a badge of honor I am not sure because it doesn’t make them seem cool or otherworldly but the average person has at least 200 dreams a night as they go through the different stages of sleep but only remember the last 4 to 5 roughly and maybe a couple of the first ones. Not having any dreams simply means you don’t remember the last few dreams you had, not that you don’t dream at all. The brain dreams for three main reasons: 1) It’s assembling the memory of everything you did that very day so your dream could be just a recap. 2) There’s something you’re ignoring that your mind (or body) is throwing up a red flag for, such as a dream about crumbling teeth can be an anxiety dream or a mental memo that you ought to see the dentist immediately. 3) Your mind is just being stupid and random, it happens.

Talking about dreams, I do have some dreams as a diviner. Silly little hopes, really. I always wanted to do divination for my favorite performers. It’s like taking a picture for me and as a fan it’s the least I could do. It’s either I want to read someone’s palms, interpret their dream or handwriting, draft their natal charts, whatever. I always think I will find something cool in there. I know for fact I want to redo Mike Shinoda and Chester Bennington’s natal charts with them because I wanna get the charts just right. Oddly enough, I never go, “Hey! I want to do their tarot/cartomancy!” because it doesn’t have the same feeling for me as doing palmistry or explaining to someone their Mars sign and how it influences their Jupiter sign. I especially would like to do astrology (i.e. Natal Charts) because there so much crap astrology out there. Ah, dreams.

Next week! The Arts! Who’s going to be featured:

– George 2.0

– Atmosphere

– Baltimore Book Festival

– Baltimore Chocolate Festival

The Chocolate festival is in October but is being featured in September. Why? Because October is The Arts: Samhain Edition! Books and sites on Witchcraft, divination and Paganism galore! And speaking of George 2.0, I will be at the next two Janelle Monae shows in DC on Sept 13 and 14th at the 9:30 Club. Gonna be there too? Say hi to me! I’ll be in lolita (look in the links on the sidebar to see what lolita fashion is). I’ll also be in NYC on Sept 18!

After The Arts is Ask a Witch! You know the rules: comment, email, tweet me or use the Ask a Witch submission form on the right sidebar! Ask a good question, get a good answer. Ask a silly question, get a silly question. Ask a bad question…erm, get a stupid answer? Either way, ask me! You never know till you try!

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