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Occasionally I wandered in where I was not wanted and gave truthful answers.
Sometimes I even did it deliberately. A little disruption now can prevent disaster later.

“Eclipse Phases over Brasstown Bald, Georgia”

I love the sky and the trees.

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Sleeping Gaia

Sex, nudity, nature. All in all very pagan.

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Secure

This looks like an admirable lady.

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Called for veritas

pagan festival season       Mercury retrograde
Lady in the Court of Shadows       🌙 waxing crescent moon

Ahh, TRUTH. A noble thing that everyone admires. Right?

People say they want truth and honesty but they don't. People want validation.

So why am I writing this on a pagan slice of life blog?

Because I use veritas in my calling.

Because sometimes I deal with people who want to change the universe.

And because it is the motto of this site.

It's my calling, but I have no higher authority. I can sometimes make unusual connections. I can juggle words better than average. I can not speak with a god-given and terrible Voice of Utter Truth. I can not summon the wrath of the High Council of Technopaganism and the Mighty Army of the Ninth Moon. I can not condemn the untruthful and ignorant to a horrible afterlife. I have to persuade.

Truth builds from small, simple, and reliable.

Truth can be a big huge barrier in what you want to do. Truth can be the small annoyance when the World doesn't work the way you think it should. Truth can be a small pebble in your shoe. Or truth can that annoying itch in the middle of your back that you can't quite reach. Sometimes truth can be your foundation. Sometimes truth can be the key to change.

Sometimes, sometimes, it's my task to provide truth. Not always. Not everywhere. And certainly not to everyone.

Most people let the Robot go through the motions of life. They don't think, they've just stockpiled engrams to handle different situations. Dinner with family? Pop in this card with engram № 47. Balancing your bank statement with your significant other? That's the card with engram № 16. Exercising at the gym? That's the card with engram № 521. Preprogrammed responses carefully learned through observation and reinforced through use.

These behaviors are based on what we observe that works. Usually society approves of behaviors that work even if it's not the best way. We model the behaviors that deliver results because that is how we get what we want..

Here's the important bit. People using the Robot define truth by how it fits their engrams. Remember that. If engrams don't allow for the possibility of another truth, then there is no other truth. If Robot people encounter a truth that doesn't fit, the Robot reacts to a threat. Even if the new truth works. Few people learn to look beyond the engrams. That's where the real thinking happens.

When something new comes along, most people and society resist. There has to be overwhelming virtue before people accept new. This is why truth is usually pushed aside.

Passion plays it's part too. People cherish their passions. That means that even if the engram doesn't "work," someone may still use it if it raises passions enough. The passion becomes more important that the truth.

Going around handing out truth just because it's truth doesn't work. It makes you look like an asshole. Then when truth is needed, no one pays attention. People don't always want honesty. People don't always want truth. Sometimes truth threatens what a person believes about himself.


Candor is forthrightness or frankness—not so different honesty, really. And yet, in common usage, the word communicates not just truth-telling but a lack of reserve. Everyone knows that sometimes, being reserved is healthy, even necessary for survival. Nobody thinks that being less than candid makes you a bad person (while no one wants to be called dishonest). People have an easier time talking about their level of candor because they don't think they will be punished for admitting that they sometimes hold their tongues.
     — Ed Catmull with Amy Wallace, Creativity, Inc.

The time to learn about new truths is before the truths are needed. I read a great deal. Sometimes I read things I know I will disagree with. I do it to test my own truths. I do it to build my experience. I do it before it's necessary and before passions run high.

I talk to people when I can. I write people more often. I ask questions. I try not to project my truth into what they tell me until after I know what they think.

Then I compare what I have learned with what I know. I look for an essential way that can do what I learned and what I know. Sometimes that means discarding what has worked well enough in the past. I try to do more with less. I can't accept that I have THE truth, I test my truth as often as I can. Some of my truths are about using and constructing other truths.

Simple over complicated.

Seek paradox for truth.

As a rule, absolutes don't.

I have no greater authority for truth. I have to persuade. Before I give truth, I have to judge. So I let people discover truth before I speak. I make sure truth is necessary before I speak. And I have to decide if the listener is worthy.

Because people cherish their passions they cherish their truths. That means that people may argue. And if their arguments don't fit the World as it is, people move to the abstract. They declare How Things Should Be without recognizing how things are. I don't strike down other truths. More times than not I act only when someone imposes their truth on others. I want people discovering their own truths that work for them. I want people asking questions. I want people questioning the answers. It's the best way I know to find answers I haven't thought of yet.

My task is not to win arguments. Sometimes I nudge. My job IS NOT to build the reputation of NeoWayland the Wise and Wonderful Sage. My calling is to make sure truth is carefully applied and that it sticks. I can't "make my mark" and do that. I don't play to win, I play to truth. If I do it mostly right, no one notices.

And sometimes I use truth to prevent greater harm.


Imagine for a moment that you were a part-time plumber and you were on an internet board that really didn't have anything to do with plumbing. You saw a person who kept talking about plumbing even though it was obvious he didn't know what he was talking about. Then he started offering advice, like how hydrochloric acid was great for fixing slow drains, or how mixing bleach and ammonia was just the thing to bring out that extra shine in the brightwork, or how a firecracker works to loosen that mineral deposit in your shower head. Or how you can fix that black mold by painting over it five or six times. Now most people should know that those tips are VERY BAD AND DANGEROUS, but not everyone does.

Do you think that you should explain in detail why he's wrong? Do you think you should have to trot out your qualifications to disprove what he says?

How about after it happens the fifth or ninth time?

That brings us full circle.

Occasionally I wandered in where I was not wanted and gave truthful answers. Sometimes I even did it deliberately. A little disruption now can prevent disaster later.

Veritas is my Calling but I have no higher authority. I have to persuade.

Truth builds from small, simple, and reliable.

Sometimes, sometimes, it's my task to provide truth.

Before I give truth, I judge. I let people discover truth before I speak. I make sure truth is necessary before I speak. I decide if the listener is worthy of truth.

Most people let the Robot go through the motions of life. People using the Robot define truth by how it fits their engrams.

People cherish their passions.

Going around handing out truth just because it's truth doesn't work.

Candor works better than honesty. Wait until asked unless it prevents greater harm.

The time to learn about new truths is before the truths are needed.

Test your truths as often as you can. Do more with less.

My Calling is to make sure truth is carefully applied and that it sticks.

That's it really. Simple to write but hard to do. Harder still to live. Try it if you can.


Comment from discussion Called for veritas.

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Control how we touch other people

We can't let our faiths and our creeds control how we touch other people. Faith is between you and the Divine. But we're measured by how we touch the lives of other humans.
     — NeoWayland, Journal 07Jul2017

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Dark

pagan festival season       Mecury retrograde       Lady in the Court of Shadows      
🌚 dark moon       ☀︎ Total Solar Eclipse 11:26 AM AZ time

Okay, that was embarrassing.

I'm an insomniac. This morning I was up at about two because I couldn't fall asleep. I started doing some stuff at Pagan Vigil and pretty much lost track of the time. I hopped in the shower about 9:40 and made it long. I get out of the shower, pulled on a pair of sweats, and walked down the hall.

“Why is it so dark? Did I miss the forecast? Is it going to rain?”

And then it hit me. The eclipse. Duh.

I hadn't checked my calendar yet, I usually don't do that until after I shower and clean my glasses. But yeah, people have been talking about it for weeks.

So much for the pagan guy who tells people to pay attention to their surroundings and the natural cycles. I forgot. And I'm embarrassed to admit it. You won't tell anyone, will you?

I've got about a half hour before the darkest time. I think I'll find some lemonade and a chair outside.

Bright and Dark Blessings all.

gods, i just love saying that when the cycles match!
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On some issues

On some issues I run deeper than granite and more certain than dawn.
     — NeoWayland

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Reader

That library shelf says a reader lives there.

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Snack bar

I'd say early 1960s by the hairstyles and the dress.

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“Coyote and Raven, American Tricksters: Crash Course World Mythology #22”


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Ways

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This last week in free speech

This article is cross posted at Pagan Vigil andTechnopagan Yearnings. Feel free to repost as long as you credit me and one of those two sites.

Let’s talk about the mess that took over my life this last week. I had a hunch I could be in deep on Friday night when I got some phone calls asking me what libertarians had to do with Charlottesville, Virginia.

Some know I don’t like email and a few have my number. If I had company over or if I had been watching a decent movie, I probably wouldn’t have answered the calls. This was the first I had heard of Charlottesville. I thought at first they were talking about Charlotte, North Carolina. I poked around on the internet and found out about a torchlit protest. Hey, I told folks, they have a right to free speech too. As long as they don’t burn anything down or do any other property damage, it was no skin off my nose.

I didn’t agree with what white nationalists and neo-Nazis stood for, but that is what free speech is all about. They could protest all they wanted as long as they followed the law.

But, all my callers said, it’s hate speech.

So? I replied. I threw out the quote (from me) I had been using for a few months.

“I am certainly against Nazism, supremacist groups, and misogyny. I just think they SHOULD be heard, if for no other reason than they can be laughed off the stage.

As loudly and as enthusiastically as we can.”


I said that no libertarian would support bigotry. I could see the issues about protecting the statues and I thought that deserved a very public discussion. But the racist chants shouldn’t have anything to do with that. It was two different issues and they shouldn’t be mixed.

After the sixth or so call, the landline and the cell were both quiet. “Nice job,” I thought to myself. Another crisis averted. The folks I talked to would know that libertarians and Libertarians weren’t neo-Nazis or white nationalists. I patted myself on the back.

Then came Saturday. And I got flooded with emails. By Saturday night the phones were ringing.

I should explain. About twelve years back someone at Stormfront discovered Pagan Vigil and decided that I was something I am not. Some of my writings were passed around the internet. Worse, I was quoted out of context. Then some of my stuff was rewritten to make it seem that I supported certain causes and certain ideas. That took forever to mostly fix. But there are pockets left.

Then there was the mess from Florida. Long story short, white nationalists tried to co-opt part of the state Libertarian party. They were kicked out.

But here I was, a libertarian with supposed white nationalist ties. And a (scary? sexy? spooky?) pagan to boot. What did I have to say about vehicular homicide at a neo-Nazi rally?

Free speech is acceptable.

Unprovoked violence is not.

And you’d better be damn careful about “provoked” violence. Especially at a public protest.

People have the right to talk about their beliefs. People don’t have the right to impose those beliefs on others.

If you use force so others will listen, you’re doing it wrong.

All of the above went over pretty well. Here’s what didn’t.

I said that if the neo-Nazis were wrong to use violence first and not in self defense, so were the BLM members, the antifa, and the black bloc who had been doing exactly that for years. If you were a member of the right group, the authorities were mostly looking the other way. Mob violence had become part of American political culture again, and it wasn’t the neo-Nazis or the white nationalists who had made that happen.

Or for that matter, the Christian right, the Republicans, or the libertarians.

Violence was being used to shut down political discussion. What’s more, some groups were claiming moral authority because they had been victimized by American society. No one would be allowed to criticize if the proper groups were involved.

This. Was. Wrong.

This lay the groundwork for tyranny.

As you can imagine, those last five paragraphs did not go over well.

BLM, antifa, and the black bloc weren’t allowed to be guilty no matter what they have done or what they will do.

Anyone who says different is a racist. A fascist.

A Nazi.

And they must not be allowed to speak. At all. Under any circumstances. They must be silenced.

That’s when the pagan stuff started hitting the fan. If a pagan did not IMMEDIATELY drop everything and denounce the neo-Nazis and link them AND ONLY THEM to unprovoked violence, why, they were no better than the Nazis.

And therefore they must not be allowed to speak. At all. Under any circumstances. They must be silenced.

Suddenly free speech was only for the Morally Favored.

This made me angry. Not only was paganism getting dragged into a political situation (AGAIN) that favored progressives, but people were literally talking about Those Who Should Have Free Speech and Those Who MUST NOT BE ALLOWED Free Speech. Violence was ACCEPTABLE against Those Who MUST NOT BE ALLOWED Free Speech. The whole mess was pushing my buttons. I’m afraid I wasn’t always polite about it.

So that was my week. It cropped up again and again. Phone calls, face to face talks, internet discussion boards, and gods, the emails. People couldn’t or wouldn’t accept one simple idea. Take away someone else’s free speech today and you will lose yours tomorrow. Not might, will. The only sure way to protect your free speech is to protect other’s free speech. Even if you don’t like what they are saying.

Especially if you don’t like what they are saying.

Noam Chomsky (of all people) said something very similar. “Goebbels was in favor of free speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech.”

That’s who I am. That’s where I stand. A right isn’t a right unless the other guy has it too.

     — NeoWayland, pagan philosopher, libertarian, and part time troublemaker


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In their own minds

1078849reduced

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Inside a tree

It's inspired.

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I can’t hoard the magick

Gifts from the gods were not meant to be put behind glass and never used. I can’t hoard the magick. I have to put it back out in the world.

So here it is neighbors. Take it, use it, do something with it. Leave the world a little better than when you found it. Pass it on.
     — NeoWayland, Do Be Do Be Do

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Hippies? Not quite…

Okay, this is staged.

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Kissed by the sun

I'd say she's a child of the sun.

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“Hermes and Loki and Tricksters Part 2: Crash Course World Mythology”

“In which Mike Rugnetta continues to teach you about tricksters. In this episode, we're talking about tricksters as culture heroes. Basically, a culture hero is someone whose creativity adds to their mythological culture. We'll learn how the shennanigans of Hermes are credited with deeply influencing Greek culture and myth, and we'll look at how Loki's tricks led to a lot of important aspects of Norse myth. This episode has it all! Cattle rustling, cook outs, luthiery, joke haircuts, and Gullinbursti the Battle Swine. All that's to say, this is a good one.”

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One book

Reading

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☥ ✰ ❝Sincerity does not equal competence.❞

Sincerity does not equal competence
     — Isaac Bonewits

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Journal 11Aug2017

Thinking by blogging

So I've learned to do small pleasures.

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Things are always more complicated than you think

Things are always more complicated than you think.
     — Peter Adamson

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Beware of jargon

Beware of jargon.
     — Peter Adamson

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Old mind

The purpose of ritual is to wake up the old mind in us, to put it to work. The old ones inside us, the collective unconscious, the many lives, the divine eternal parts, the senses and parts of the brain that have been ignored.
     — Zsuzsanna Budapest

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Song of Amergin

I am the roar of the ocean. I am a powerful ox. I am a hawk on a cliff. I am a salmon in pools. I am a lake in a plain.
     — from the Song of Amergin

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Skyclad

We’re not naked, we’re skyclad!
     — Kelley Armstrong, Dime Store Magic

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Cannot bless

He who cannot blast cannot bless.
     — Gwydion Pendderwen

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Power is scary

Power is scary. And scared people are very very dangerous.
     — Cholla, Who Cannot Hex Cannot Heal, Witch Eye

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She was more than a bit put out

When I finally did hear the voice of the Divine, it was female. And She was more than a bit put out that it had taken so long to get my attention. I did hear a male Divine voice too, but that was later.
     — NeoWayland, Why are you Pagan?

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Dreams seem small

If our dreams seem small, it's up to us to make them greater. We need to make our own, not reach for the dreams of another. We can make it our Journey, or we can live the Story of another. A simple choice but the price is high. Just your faith and trust.
     — NeoWayland, Quick notes to a new seeker

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Seven points

Yes, this one is overtly sexual.

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Don't essentialize

Don't essentialize.
     — Peter Adamson

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Lady with torches

I love pictures of Lady Liberty.

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People of the library

Pagans aren't people of the book, we're people of the library.
     — Steve Posch

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Best practices

I had to learn that just because others didn't see the possibilities didn't mean I had to explain it.

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Focus on the primary text

Focus on the primary text, not secondary literature.
     — Peter Adamson

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On the road

Sharing a cup of coffee in the morning.

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What about you?

I like this lady's attitude.

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Respect texts about texts

Respect texts about texts.
     — Peter Adamson

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Sunfell Tech Mage Rede Nine Words Serve The Tech Mage Best Keep What Works Fix What’s Broke Ditch The Rest

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