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On Magical Authenticity

Most magical practitioners I’ve met start from a similar place – as little kids that love nature. We start by making potions from plants and twigs, communing with animals, and finding ourselves lost in the stars. Then we are usually told, by others and ourselves, that we need to grow up. One of my mentors is fond of saying that, if you want to see what an authentic practitioner looks like, watch a child in nature. It is interesting how what comes so naturally to us when we are small is exactly the place we work so hard to get back to when we begin serious practice of magic.


We often think that a certain path or tradition holds the key to unlocking that feeling of magic. It absolutely can because tradition, community, and keeping magical history alive is important. However, the root of magic lies within you. Your practice must have a connection to who you are, where you live, and your daily life.


I am piloting a class series called Folk Magic Fundamentals that starts at the end of this month. I want to share a bit about my own practice to help give you a sense of what I will be teaching and why.


I personally work in a quiet tradition, which is a particular lineage of Trolldom. That’s a broad umbrella term for a form of folk magic with Scandinavian roots. When I say quiet, I mean that it’s kind of like Fight Club. First rule is you don’t talk about it. Just kidding. Kind of. My mentor has said more than once that it’s important that we do our work and shut the hell up about it. Working quietly conserves power, is how I was taught.


I studied with my mentor, who is based in Sweden, for years. One of the things he stressed was the importance of connecting the magical practices I was learning to who I was and where I was from. While he made it clear that, when the time was right, coming to the motherland of the tradition was important, he also taught me that connection to nature, the spirits around me, and connecting with the authentic practitioner within me was the heart of the magic, which is older and more powerful than human existence and constructs. It helped me embrace the complicated relationship I have with growing up all over the Western United States and my identity as a country kid at heart now living in an urban area. He says I get to claim the banner of what he named “Cowboy Trolldom.” I’ll take it.


Getting to this place was a process that took about 15+ years of study, practice, and learning as much as I could. Before becoming a “Cowgirl Troll,” I explored so many paths. I dipped in and out of Wiccan and Neo-Pagan spaces, finding that while I appreciated what I learned, these spaces weren't for me. I’ve had the great honor of learning from friends who are dedicated students of traditions much different than where I’ve landed, which has given me so much appreciation for the similarities and important cultural differences that exist in our practices. I am grateful for every teacher and experience I’ve had on the way…and there’s been a lot. We can learn so much, even from traditions and teachers that we don’t stay with for long. My hope is that Folk Magic Fundamentals will give some of you the jumpstart that I wish I’d had and the refresh and reset that I could have used as I went searching for a practice that felt like home.

 

I created Folk Magic Fundamentals to give you a framework for discovering what authentic magical connection feels like for you. I want to help you feel what magical living and listening to nature and the whispers of your ancestors and the spirits all around you is like. I’m not here to teach you a certain tradition, although my hope is that many of you will pick up the trail of a tradition that feels aligned by the end of our time together so you can keep learning and growing.

 

The registration is open and the full class description and schedule is available on the registration page. Make sure you click “Read More” to see the full description. This class is for both beginners and experienced practitioners who are seeking a refresh to their practice. Click here for more about who Folk Magic Fundamentals is for.


I look forward to seeing you in class. We start on May 28th.



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