We'll take a bit of a break from the history of our friends the Celts tonight and focus on some hopefully entertaining stories I have to impart.
As you know, I am a witch. Truthfully a mild mannered, Goddess loving, curious and always seeking witch. At times I wear renaissance garb, cloaks and long dresses, well simply because I think I look good in that style of clothing. Primarily I wear this style of clothing in my shoppe because it does sort of stand out at the A&P! Yet like today, with a potential storm on our horizon I am looking at stopping at the store after work to get milk and bread, dressed in a medieval purple velvet, floor length dress with black frogging on sleeves and bodice. I wonder if I'll get any looks?? Ha!
Honestly that's about as freaky as I get. But, when I'm missing the unusual, strange and OMG weird!!!, I just have to wait a minute. They will usually find me in my store. Really, like the New England weather, if you haven't had freaky in a while, wait a minute! For instance recently I had Jesus Christ's brother stop by. I kid you not!! He was selling his services, not cheaply he informed me, of his miracles and deeds. He informed me he had visited hell and vanquished the devil, not once but three times!! Well then.
That same day I was contacted by a woman, on the phone, who wanted to know if we were capable of creating illusions that would cause people to see what we wanted them to see. She thought she saw tarantulas scurrying around her bathroom and thought we may have had something to do with that!! Oh, the power people seem to think we have!! Then you have those who are not fond of their friendly neighborhood witch.
Once a couple of years ago I had a gentleman come into the store and he waited patiently until the customers who were purchasing items left, then he came to the counter and asked "So, what do you think about them witch burnings?" Well, I had conducted, just the week before our annual bus trip to Salem, MA and the instructor in me was at the forefront and I started to gently correct him that we didn't have any witch burnings on this continent, only hangings and that the burnings were primarily in Europe, when I was interrupted.
He flourished a small book that I assume was a copy of the Christian bible and waved it in my face and started to scream about the evil that we do and the terrible punishments we would suffer in hell, etc. etc.
I was able to come out from behind the counter and opened the door for him and asked him to leave. After a few more threats he did so. My friend Laurel, who is a Wiccan Priestess and works with me, and I have often joked how we seem to get a lot of 'extreme' people around Halloween and that they tend to go away around Christmas. We joke they must be at the mall harassing Santa!! So the other day left me a bit baffled. I looked at my calendar and nope, not our time of the year yet!!
I have approximately 15 or so individuals on a list that we keep that have been reported to our local police department. I find it interesting that the psychosis that we deal with most often seems to have many things in common. I mean 'psychosis' as these individuals are mentally ill and need our sympathy, not a rude attitude because they misinterpret our ways. Some of the common beliefs from this type of individual are:
- an extreme religious fanaticism, not exclusive to the Christian belief, as many are vehemently non Christian but just as religiously fanatical concerning their belief in the magickal world. Also let me say I do not label religious fanatics Christian or otherwise. They are mentally ill people who have lost serious touch with most of reality and need professional help.
- These individuals, I have met or had any contact with, primarily written correspondence as well as some phone conversations, almost exclusively believe in a greater than human power that they want, think I have and can give them, or that they have and will bestow on others.
- Many of these disturbed people that are attracted to our ways also have a strong unshakable belief in curses, evil spells being cast upon them, and others doing them wrong with the help of magick. When we try to explain to them that magick doesn't, or can't work that way, they are disbelieving or disappointed. Unfortunately there are many cons on the internet and in local communities that prey upon these people and make tremendous money off of them.
I have had a few people contact me over the years from psychiatric hospitals, requesting magickal supplies be sent to them. We won't do this. Magick should not be practiced by those who are not in strong control of their mental faculties as I believe it can cause them harm. Allowing them to believe with magick all of their issues will magickally vanish., when many times therapy and or medication is the real 'magick' needed. It does not work this way, as you know by now. I spoke with a woman's doctor once, a psychiatrist and told him I felt it could be potentially harmful for her to practice unless she was mentally stable. He said he was surprised I wasn't in this just for the money and that he had a new respect for who we are because I wouldn't sell her anything.
I had a young woman once, a few years ago, in her early twenties, who came into the store and inquired about classes. I explained the course and requirements and she asked a bunch of questions and she seemed perfectly normal and rational. I still believe she was although perhaps a bit naive, for after she thought for several moments about the information I gave her she said to me "well, I'm interested in classes but I don't know if Satan will accept me." huh?
I personally, would have loved to have a photograph of my face after that statement was uttered. I think I said "pardon, I don't think I heard you correctly, would you repeat that?" and she did. I hadn't misheard her.
I ask you, how would you have handled these situations? Well to the young woman, who thought she was not up to Satan's standards, I gently explained that to us Satan doesn't exist. We don't work with him and that was an important concept she needed to understand to be accepted for classes at Enchantments. I actually felt bad, after explaining that to her, as her face showed how crestfallen she was. Seriously, she was so disappointed. She left and has not returned.
As far as the other individuals, I deal with them on a one on one basis. Always with respect and a pleasant demeanor. When its apparent that the person is not in full control of his/her rational faculties, I try to get them to leave the store without anyone getting hurt, because we can't help them. I don't attempt to psychoanalyze as I'm not a trained therapist and I have issues with people who 'pretend' they are! I also don't underestimate that a person, perhaps in the grip of a psychotic episode, can be potentially dangerous.
I also don't try to debate them and discuss with them history or concepts to 'prove' to them that they are mistaken about our world and what we do in it. These people are vested in their understanding of the world and how they see it. Its not a battle I wish to engage in, because for them, at that moment in time, they are right as it relates to them. They are incorrect in their assumptions of us, but in their mind they are correct and to try to argue them to another position is the mistake of the young and inexperienced on this path.
O.K. this was several years ago when I first opened the shoppe, and would advertise using a very nice photograph the local paper took showing me in my tarot parlor. Needless to say I no longer use my photograph in any advertisements that may find their way into a prison system!! I also had to look up the term 'dominant' and no I don't believe our world syncs up with the worlds of S and M or bondage and discipline, though I have worked with some past coven members I would have dearly liked to tie up and flog!! (Ha!)
I have had at least one individual receive a written warning from the local police and he is never allowed to enter our shoppe again. He was convinced he was some sort of soul mate of mine and we needed to be together!! The really crazy part is I had never met him and he had never set eyes on me, ever, well as far as I know! My staff dealt with him, then the police. Yes, the scary does at times visit Enchantments.
Then the really bizarre! Once and thankfully only once, a gentleman who drove a small car affixed with placards all over it, proclaiming him the son of light, stopped by to shop! Not the brother of Jesus, at least he didn't introduce himself as such. Well, he certainly caught our attention as he walked into the shoppe wearing a large cloak and, o.k. I'm not kidding, an orange traffic cone on his head. Not the small ones used for kids games, but an honest to goodness full sized traffic cone!! Bright Orange. Yep. Try ringing up that man's purchase with a straight face I dare you!! We are expected at Enchantments to be pleasant and polite to all regardless of dress, religious affiliation or oddities. Sometimes I'll admit to going home with a sore inner lip from my teeth biting down so hard to keep a polite face and respectful demeanor.
These are just some of the fun, freaky stuff I encounter in my shoppe. Some of the less fun stuff has happened from those who I did work with and who knew me as their instructor at my school. These are the most disturbing. I'm considered a strict teacher in the respect that I require my students to be responsible for their attendance, tuition payments and to do homework and studying as required. They are required to get very high grades to pass from one section of study to the next and they need a 90% to graduate. This is not kindergarten! I'm proud to say that the students who do graduate achieve these requirements and all of my graduates I am so proud of. There have been those who are a bit, shall we say lazy. When things don't go as smoothly as they expect some have left with disgruntled attitudes and complaining "Ms Faith is sooooo . . . " I'll let you fill in the blanks.
Some of these past students have accused me of the most ridiculous things. Let's see, I've been accused of attacking someone in their sleep and it was said this person awoke up in the morning with hand prints on their body, and the hand prints were obviously mine!! Really?
I've been accused of controlling their minds and being able to see and hear their thoughts! As if I don't have enough trouble dealing with my own overcrowded thoughts!!
Then the topper was when I was accused of burning someone's house down with my spells!! I brought this one to the police's attention because to be accused of arson or any other crime frankly just ticks me off! That situation involved a person stealing candles from my store and they were caught on video tape. The person was asked to leave and never return and I refused their offer to pay for them, after they had been caught and fired. Simply because I believe in Karma and I wasn't inclined to soothe the karmic flashback. When I heard that the thief's house burned down a couple of months later, I knew karma had taken care of the situation. Karma was kind, as no one was injured that I know of. And I fervently hope that to be true. But karma can be a bitch. It's funny, sometimes I think people think I make this stuff up!
Well, to be accused of such an act, was very concerning and I brought the story to the police department. The police then handled the issue and the irony of the situation did not escape me. For a mere couple hundred or so years ago would have seen me hung on the State House lawn in Hartford for that accusation. It made me glad that the government no longer feels this way about what we do, and in my town the police have been very respectful and helpful whenever a situation requires their assistance.
Well, these are just some of the fun highlights of my day to day life. Some are concerning, some downright scary and some ridiculous in the extreme. Trying to educate people as to who we are and what we do, and what we don't do is my focus and the reason Enchantments exists. The people I discussed tonight are just one reason I continue to try to teach others. Because many times its these people who are the most outspoken and who are mistakenly thought to represent the average Wiccan or witch. I assure you they do not!!!
The primary reason I teach and have Enchantments is the normal, magickal, rational and interested folks who really make my day. I have so many great customers that come in to say hi, support us and to get information. They may ask how to cast a specific spell, are trying to find the right herbs or stones, maybe need their cards read or just want to visit. To the magickal people who make up our clientele and make each day a happy experience, I personally thank you!!
This is a bit of a a different topic than what we normally discuss, but I did promise you by the very title of this witches blog, that I will share with you the experiences that visit my witches life. I hope the stories made you laugh and I look forward to our next discussion.
Peace and Happiness
© 2010 Enchantments, LLC Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website.
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