Posted in Every Day

I’m Glad They Don’t Take Us Seriously.

When I first saw this video  https://www.facebook.com/NowThisHer/videos/987325564731652/?autoplay_reason=all_page_organic_allowed&video_container_type=0&video_creator_product_type=2&app_id=2392950137&live_video_guests=0

I was angry. The dopey music put me off. The weird video clips and ending the piece by focusing on Christians…? It was all infuriating.

As I thought more about it, I got angrier. Christians only make up about 7 percent of the population, but they seem to control the dialog. Even major publications like the New York Times present Christian beliefs and prayers as completely normal, completely rational and normative Read More. but somehow, pagan beliefs are ridiculous.

No plunky music plays over clips of church services. No counter-“curses” are thrown their way.

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Then, as I sat down to write this, I realized something else: it’s a good thing. It’s good no one takes us seriously as pagans. It’s good they don’t see us as policy influencers or reputable believers.

It’s good because if they continue to see us all as caricatures, Dungeons and Dragons cosplayers chanting in smoky basements before going back to our video games and science fiction books, then they leave us alone.

Pagans are as multi-faceted as the gods we worship. We believe many things, look a million ways and live a million lives the “mainstream” religions could never understand.

And it’s good for us.

While they focus on countering our prayers, our spells aimed at making the world a better place, we continue forward. We mind our own business and call to the gods that predate their books, their religion, their constraints.

So instead of getting angry, I have this to say: Ignore us. Underestimate us. And, leave us alone.

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Posted in Every Day

Pathways

There are not many spiritual shops in the Midwest. Mostly, if you’re not a Christian, you’re relying on Walmart candles, smoke-shop incense, and books purchased online to learn from.

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I think learning from nature is great, but it doesn’t work for everyone. I am a cottage witch, a bookworm, and love, love, to learn. I want to consume knowledge and use it to better the lives of my family members and those around me. Unfortunately, most spiritual shops are focused more on selling pretty chachkies than providing access to real knowledge. I hold no ill-will toward anyone brave enough to open a business, but the pure-commerce feeling always leaves me aching for more.

But then there’s Pathways.

Situated in an unassuming brick building in South County St. Louis is the gem of St. Louis’ Pagan community.

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Pathways has an abundant variety of spiritual tools for any denomination and practice imaginable, and if they don’t stock what you are seeking, they will gladly guide you to a source that would have it available.

There is no judgment, and so far, there hasn’t been a question they have not been able to help me with.

That isn’t what makes Pathways special, though.

Pathways feels different. It feels like happening upon a sacred circle in a dense forest.

It feels like…church. But in the best way. In the “this is where the gods are” way.

The staff and owners are not playing at paganism to sell pretty crystals. They are pagans. They live it. They source information and gather knowledgeable guides and offer tarot readings and lessons and a million other things. There are shelves full of herbs for sale by the ounce. There are a hundred tarot decks to choose from, candles, stones, books, robes, rings…everything.

But tucked away in the shelves and cases is something else, something I haven’t found in any other “store”: peace.

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Peace and enlightenment live in that place, and I encourage you to stop by when you are in the neighborhood. Support them, buy something, and feel the place.

*As a side note, you should know I am not an affiliate for Pathways, and they have not offered compensation for this story in any way. This is simply my opinion on a place you should all go.*

MORE INFORMATION ON PATHWAYS:

Pathways
http://www.pathwaysstl.com
11419 Concord Village Ave
St. Louis, Missouri 63123
314-842-0047
Store hours: 10:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Monday – Saturday,
11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Sundays