disclosure is the best

Lesson 5: Graveyards in Witchcraft- Basics!

By: Helper Kit 

Live class date and time: 1/5/2017 at 7:00pm CST

A.) Legalities: I will mention some things that I do very briefly in my personal graveyard. It is an older one that borders my 3 acre property directly and is not regularly maintained. This allows to me to fudge some rules. HOWEVER- working as a paralegal for over a decade, let me lay some groundwork legality clauses for the general witch:
         1.) Do not enter after dark. It is illegal in most states.
         2.) Do not take dirt directly from atop a grave.
         3.) Do not bring bottles of liquor into the cemetery, or glass jars to put you dirt in.
         4.) Do not light more than a tea candle and always hold the tea candle yourself (do not set on ground)
         5.) It’s best to not disclosure your craft to anyone asking what you’re doing. Just say you’re visiting (and wanted to honor your relative’s memory if a candle is lit)

           6.) ALWAYS do as an employee/pastor/policeman asks. Even if it may be technically legal and they’re just uncomfortable, it’s better to de-escalate the situation and leave. You can either come back at a different time or find a different graveyard.
           7.) Bring flowers to appear more normal! They also make great offerings!
           8.) Do not remove ANYTHING from a grave site. Ever.
           9.) Do not leave offerings of stones. It is offensive (i.e. personal) in some religions. Note: In regards to leaving stones on graves/headstones: It is a Jewish practice for remembrance and respect, but my personal research has not found any sources of it being disrespectful for gentiles/non-Jews to also do so. If you find a credible source to the contrary- please let us know! Otherwise, it is fine to leave small stones as offerings.

B.) Offerings: these should always be something subtle. I never bring in an actual bottle/glass of the liquor offerings. I usually soak a small bit of cotton or leaf/herb mixture in it and use that. For honey, I’m a huge fan of those individual packets you can get at restaurants (even though they aren’t perfectly local and organic, they are more transportable and less legality issues- just please dispose of the plastic trash after use properly)
           Offering examples: tobacco, juice, silver coins, honey, liquor, fruit, flowers, herbs, incense (I like to use pomegranate based juice/liquor/fruit due to it’s ties to the Underworld)

C.) Basic communing with the dead ritual/introducing yourself to a new graveyard
           -example ritual: [http://stygiantarot.tumblr.com/post/154861064189/communing-with-the-dead]

                                   -I do NOT recommend bringing a shovel or spade. Period. I don’t even do this with my own graveyard, it is a dangerous offense to be caught with.
                                   -It would be best to wear shoes that are easy to take off, and do the ritual without digging (if you don’t like the idea of bare feet in a graveyard, wear thin socks you don’t mind getting dirty). The spirits will understand you don’t want to be put in jail.
                                   -I do NOT recommend inhaling the herbs listed as wormwood and mugwort both contain Thujone, which can cause a LOT of issues if too much is ingested/smoked. An sachet of these is fine. You can gently smell the sachet bundle when focusing on the spirit connection. Please be aware of your own medical conditions as well (i.e. allergies/pregnancies/disorders)

                                   -Oils I recommend that are safe to place on your eyelids and would have positive connotations with the dead: olive, pomegranate, coconut, almond, hemp seed (these are all technically “carrier oils” and if you want to add a dash of an essential oil that increases psychic/perception, you can- just spot check it before you put it on the eyelid. Also, just a dab on each eyelid is fine. No need to stick your eyelashes together.
                                   

D.) Graveyard dirt. What the hell is it? Simply put, it’s dirt collected from a graveyard. It is NOT a euphemism for other herbs. Also, when it comes to “Goofer dust”, that is a NOT interchangeable with graveyard dirt, though graveyard dirt is a component of the mixture. Please keep in mind Goofer dust is a traditional Hoodoo mixture, and not something I recommend trying to use or replicate without stepping into appropriation territory (THANKS “SUPERNATURAL”). However, graveyard dirt is not.

-Magical uses: Protection, barriers/wards (around property especially!), cursing/hexes, banishing, certain types of healing, divination, spirit-work

DON’T TAKE SOD/GRASS.
           

                                               Types:

                       1.) General graveyard dirt: from anywhere inside the graveyard grounds. This is what I recommend for beginners or people who don’t have a lot of spirit work experience. Still leave an offering, explain your purpose, and be respectful even if you’re just snagging a couple spoonfuls from under a tree.

                       2.) Grave dirt: dirt from a specific grave. Do not do this with recent graves unless it is someone you knew/a relative. It’s best to do this with older/semi-abandoned graves (pre 1900s are great). Ask permission first (this is where spirit work experience comes in, it’s best to get some sort of positive response in the method you are familiar with before removing), leave an offering, and again be respectful.

                       3.) Grave dust: The “leavings”/debris from atop the gravestone itself. This is actually the easiest to collect without looking suspicious. Just gently sweep it off into your hand and discreetly put it in the bag/vessel you brought. It’s a common ingredient in Underworld/Death/Necro workings. Also can be thought of as an extra potent version of graveyard dirt in regards to magical correspondences. Still leave an offering, ask permission, and explain yourself beforehand.

 

E.) Homework: Go to a graveyard/cemetery and walk around quietly. Let yourself soak in the energy and see if you’re drawn to any gravestones. Take pictures of the one(s) that you’re drawn to! Share them on the server (or on your blog and tag us!)
           Extra credit: Research the person listed on the grave and see if you can figure out a reason you might have been drawn to them!

  • Steven's song, 'Full Disclosure': I don't want my best friend to go through trouble for me, she shouldn't have to worry about me.
  • Literally the next song in the entire series, sung by Pearl and Connie: I'm gonna learn how to beat the shit out of anything that looks at Steven wrong.
Best Episodes for Doctor Crusher

Full disclosure—Doctor Crusher was my favorite character as a kid, and I never knew quite why. Doing this profile revealed that, when she was doing more than delivering her obligatory two-lines of dialogue per episode, she was a smart and funny nerd up for any adventure while rocking a lab coat. Here are her best moments:

“Symbiosis”

All around one of the first season’s best episodes (yes, the first season had good episodes). Despite the show’s notorious rule that the lead characters could never have interpersonal conflict, the story here finds a good reason for Crusher and Picard to verbally duke it out—they both have high moral standards that compel them to take a certain action. Or, in Picard’s case, to not take action. (You might also check out Season 1’s “The Big Goodbye,” which isn’t a Crusher episode, but features her being adorable in a 1940s getup on the holodeck.)

“Remember Me”

The sci-fi hook is pretty easy to figure out early on, but the fun is watching Doctor Crusher argue with the unhelpful computer while solving the puzzle she’s trapped in. And Gates McFadden got to do some stunt work, running and jumping and almost flying around the ship, just a few days before discovering that she was pregnant.

“The Host”

I didn’t like this episode as a kid, but upon rewatch, I think it shows an enjoyable, very adult (as in grown-up) romance of the kind that Star Trek usually fumbles. The chemistry between Crusher and Odan is real enough to make you believe they’ve fallen for each other in two weeks, and it raises intriguing questions about identity and love (even if it sidesteps the issue of sexuality at the end).

“Cause and Effect”

One of my all-time favorite TNG stories. Known as the episode with the ultimate teaser, it’s a brain-teasing sci-fi concept with Doctor Crusher and the crew trying to figure out how to stop a time loop that keeps destroying them. It could have been any character’s episode, but the choice to let Beverly carry the show really sells it. It’s also one of Jonathan Frakes’ early directing efforts, and he nails the challenge of shooting basically the same scenes over and over again with subtle differences. Solid work all around.

The Quality of Life”/”True Q”: The first one’s so-so, the second one a very good Q story, but both these episodes give Crusher a supporting role in which she’s a friend, mentor, confidant, and philosophical debate partner, rather than the person curing or fixing the crew after their adventures.

“Suspicions”

To be honest, the mystery in this murder mystery doesn’t completely hold up, and the ending is beyond preposterous, but it’s fun to watch Doctor Crusher take some names as she doggedly pursues the truth, getting herself into trouble like a classic gumshoe. Plus, it’s Guinan’s final appearance on the show.

“Attached”

Finally, Beverly and Jean-Luc tell each other how they feel! It takes being psychically connected with brain implants—a sci-fi version of two fugitives being handcuffed together as they go on the lam across enemy country—but their obvious chemistry gets to sparkle at last. Beverly looks amazing in her shiny dress in the final dinner scene, which makes it hurt just slightly less that it ends the way it does.

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Best UFO Sightings Of February 2016!

ironqrows replied to your post: The next person who tells me I write Penny well…

do you want me to get the mop out and murder with the mop

Please. I’m begging here.


ofthieveryandaddictions replied to your postThe next person who tells me I write Penny well…

but??? you are??? ? fuck it’s so rude for people to make assumptions like that

Right? And the thing is - I don’t spread it around. It’s not on my blog or my about page or anything because it’s not anyone’s fucking business but my own. Same with the rest of my head.

But to make that assumption and go off about how they’re autistic and they think I did okay for such a neurotypical!! It’s like… do you not understand the concept of disclosure? I have a lot of shit going on that even my best friends don’t know about. Pretty sure some people have seen it in my fics and guess. But.

Don’t fucking assume.

This is one of my favorite pieces of art. It’s by an incredible artist named Colin Quashie (Full disclosure: Colin Quashie is one of my best friends living on the third rock from the sun)

The piece is entitled Responsibility. I’ve owned this painting for 15+ years. It always amazes me to hear what people see. Some think it’s a man walking away from his family, but there’s nothing on the canvas to suggest that these people know each other. They could be strangers passing by. Some people think it’s a woman taking her life back from the oppressive confines of an abusive relationship. There are so many ways to interpret the images. 

I’ve heard Quashie lecture about Responsibility many times. For him, art is about process and product. The process is defined by why. Why did he paint this image and call it Responsibility? Why did he use those colors? 

The product is defined by everyone. Ultimately, Quashie’s personal process is irrelevant. The viewer has the right to define what they see for themselves. Quashie’s role as the creator is not more important or more relevant than the viewer’s. 

The role of art is to communicate, not dictate. The creator will never control what the audience sees or how they respond. The audience takes what they want. They don’t need permission. They are not right or wrong. That’s the beauty of art. That’s the beauty of being a fan. There’s room for all of us. All of our feelings and opinions are valid as long as we don’t try and dictate to others how they should feel. 

If the creator can’t dictate, then neither can the fan. Both sides struggle with that reality. That’s why I troll. How can you not laugh at the human condition? We all get so worked up. We scream, we yell, we cry, we laugh, we love, we hate and eventually we die. I choose to laugh as much as possible before the grim reaper knocks on my door. Nobody lies on their death bed and says, “you know, I really laughed and loved too much. I really should have hated more.”

And so, I troll on:)

Everything Pt. 2

Everything Part One You MUST MUST MUST read part 1 before you read this or else you’ll be completely lost. They won’t stand alone. Also, I did my best with all of the medical stuff (disclosure: I haven’t gone to medical school so I did enough research to get me through). 

“Owen,” he heard Meredith sit beside him in the gallery where he was watching Amelia’s surgery. “Why don’t you go get some rest?”

“I’m not tired,” he answered her as he sniffled. He had sat there silently crying through the entire surgery, watching every move Stephanie made. Impressed with her skill and technique, it didn’t change the fact that it was Amelia on the table.

“Okay.”

“Why are you here?” he asked her, not accusingly, more so curious.

“To make sure you’re okay. Are you okay?” she asked him, her eyes focused on the surgery below.

“No.”

“Don’t run,” Meredith warned him. “You’ve hurt her before. And as much as I can’t stand her right now, I can’t watch that happen to her again. So, don’t pull away again.”

“She won’t want me.”

“Stop talking nonsense,” Meredith said.

“I blame myself. For this. I should have done more. I should have made her get checked out. We could’ve found this earlier. She wouldn’t be on that table.”

“Did you get checked out after the explosion?” Meredith asked him. Finally, he turned to face her. “No one got checked after the explosion because no one had any apparent injuries. Even Amelia had no idea she hit her head. So you can stop playing the blame game right now. As soon as she started showing symptoms you got her here. No one can predict a brain bleed. You did the best you could.”

“If only that were good enough.”

Meredith reached down and took ahold of Owen’s hand and didn’t let go until Amelia was rolled out of surgery.

“She’s going to be fine,” Stephanie reassured him as she came to update Owen. “I got control of the bleeder and we’ll keep monitoring her closely until she wakes up.”

Owen nodded and sat by Amelia’s bedside. “You’re going to be okay,” he said as he used the back of his hand to caress her face.

Day 3

“She hasn’t woken up!” A disheveled Owen shouted at Stephanie in the hall outside of Amelia’s room. Since her surgery, he hadn’t moved from her room. Meredith brought him food and water, knowing he wouldn’t leave. His facial hair had grown out and you could see he had worried his hair into a heap of a mess. Now there was a distinct odor being emitted from him, yet he still wouldn’t leave.

“I don’t know why she’s not waking up.”

“You don’t know?” he roared at her.

“Her CTs are clear. She didn’t have a stroke. She should be awake.”

“That’s not good enough!” he shouted.

“Dr. Hunt!” Bailey shouted and marched over to him, motioning for Stephanie to leave them. “That poor girl has been running herself ragged trying to do everything she can for Dr. Shepherd. You need to control yourself and get it together.”

Entering into her room, he pulled the chair as close as he could to maintain his vigil. “Amelia, I need you to wake up. Okay? I’m sorry this is all my fault. I should’ve paid more attention. I should’ve taken care of you. I never should have pushed you away. I’ll never do that again, I promise. It’s time to wake up now. Show me those beautiful blue eyes. It’s time to wake up.”

Day 10

“This is just sad,” Alex said as the group of them stood outside of Amelia’s room, watching Hunt as he restlessly slept in the chair beside her.

“Shut up,” Meredith slapped him.

“The dude hasn’t even had a decent shower. Have you smelled him lately?”

“You don’t know what it’s like so shut up,” Meredith scolded again.

“It’s the worst feeling in the world,” Arizona chimed in, dwelling on her experience with Callie. “Just let him be.”

Day 13

“They all just forced me into that shower. It was not appreciated at the time, but I have to admit I was starting to smell pretty ripe,” he laughed as he arranged some flowers around her room. “I bet you’re wondering what in the world we’re all doing out here. Stephanie is working around the clock trying to figure out a way to wake you up since you’re being so stubborn. Ironic thing is that you’re probably the only one who would be able to figure it out in the first place.”

He paced around the floor. “What do you want me to do here, Amelia? Haven’t I begged and pleaded enough? Why won’t you just…WAKE UP?” he shouted, tears streaming down his face.

“I’m sorry,” filled with remorse, he rubbed circles over her hand with his thumb. “I didn’t mean to scream at you. I just don’t know what to do anymore. I don’t know who I am without you anymore. I don’t want to be this person. I’m mean and irritable and I yell at everyone. I’ve never been more in touch with my feelings, that’s for sure,” he chuckled.

“I’m desperate here.”

He sat there for a few moments before an idea struck him. “I had a sister. Megan. She was three years younger than me. Smarter than me, funnier than me, better person than me. She did everything I did. We went to med school together and that’s where we met Riggs. Nate was my best friend. And Megan loved him. And he was with her the day that we lost her. I trusted him with her, and he was like a brother to me. And he should’ve…but he didn’t. And I don’t talk about it. We all have things we don’t like to talk about. This is one of them.”
He continued to stroke her hands. “And now I’m wishing I would’ve told you sooner. There’s a lot of things I wished I would have said to you. Like all of the things I love about you. The way your mouth looks like a ducks when you’re really pondering something. The way you walk, the way you talk. You’re filter or the lack of one. I love that you have the ability to just say whatever is on your mind without thinking about any consequences. I know you’re working on it, but I love it even if it hurts sometimes. I love your intensity in an OR and your ability to take charge and command. Whenever you would tell Derek off, I used to think it was so hot,” he laughed.

“I love your confidence. I love how you are with the kids. You’re so good with them. I love your pancakes, best I’ve ever had. I love the way that you hold only my elbows when we kiss. I love how your small petite baby hands somehow seem to fit perfectly with mine. And there are more, but that’s enough for now. I love you Amelia. And I’ll spend every moment for the rest of my life telling you that. But you need to wake up first.”

Day 20

“Zola wanted me to tell you that she sold 500 boxes of Girl Scout cookies. She set the record in her troop. Although she set aside a box of the peanut butter patties because she knows those are your favorite. Those are your favorite?” he chastised. “Everyone knows Thin Mints are the best.”

Owen switched out the older flowers for newer ones and set them on the ledge behind her bed.

“And Bailey keeps growing like a weed. Pretty soon he’ll be taller than you. And Ellis just keeps looking more like Derek every day. Sometimes when she smiles she looks just like you. She has your dimples.”

He sat on the corner of her bed and takes ahold of her hand. “What are you thinking about, Amelia? What I wouldn’t love to know what you’re thinking in there. Can you hear us? Hear me? Because I just can’t understand why you’re not awake yet. We’re all here waiting for you. All you need to do is get it together and open your eyes. Come back to me. We’re getting close to 30 days. After 30 days…” he trailed off unable to finish the thought. “I wish it were me here instead of you. I’d gladly be in your place if it meant you were out in the world.”

Day 22

“Owen, why don’t you go home for awhile? Go sleep. I’ll stay with her for awhile.”

“No.”
“Owen, she wouldn’t want you to do this to yourself.”

“Shut up. We only have eight days left. I’m not leaving her. I want to be here for whatever time she has left. I need to be here for whatever’s left.”

“It’s only a couple of hours. Get some decent food; get some sleep. When she wakes up you don’t want her to see you looking all haggard and decrepit.”

“Call me if anything changes?” he asked.

“Of course.”

Owen stood and leaning over, kissed Amelia’s forehead. “I’ll be right back. I love you.”

He returned to the trailer that he had settled a few blocks away from the hospital and fell asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow. He hadn’t left the hospital much in the last 22 days. A few hours here a few hours there, but he mostly had stayed in her hospital room, showering in the lounge when he began to get tired of his own stench and filth. He didn’t think it would feel so good to be outside of those depressing gray walls and feel like a normal human being. And for a few hours he forgot everything. Forgot that Amelia would probably never wake up or if she did she would probably have so many neurological deficits that she wouldn’t even be herself anymore.

Amelia’s directive had been very clear that she didn’t want to be kept alive by machines or any other extraordinary measures for over 30 days. There had been no improvement; no change. And in 8 days, she would be let go.

Owen stepped into his shower and spent what felt like hours inside, letting the warmth radiate through his pores and try to bring his body peace. He exited the shower and began to mill about the trailer trying to find anything that wasn’t out of date. Finding a can of soup he put it into a pot and placed it onto the small burner.

His phone vibrated in his pocket, a page from Meredith. He had missed at least 10 pages from Meredith, the hospital, Stephanie, Maggie lit up on his phone. Something was going on. Pulling on the rest of his clothes, he ran back to the hospital.

Taking the elevator up to the neurological ICU floor, he couldn’t help but think that he had missed it. That he had let her down again. That he hadn’t been there for her when she left this world.

The doors to the elevator opened and he hesitated to even step off of them, not wanting to admit that she was gone. As he entered the hall he saw Stephanie around the nurses station sobbing, her head in her hands. Meredith sitting close outside Amelia’s room, also sobbing. He had missed it and he’d never forgive himself.

Tears stung his eyes as he came closer and closer. Rounding the corner to Amelia’s room, he prepared himself for what he was about to see.

“You’re late,” her voice called out to him. Shocked and stunned, his brain worked in overdrive to propel his feet forward to her.

With tears in her eyes, she reached out for him and enveloped him as he cried.

Day 30

“Dinner is served,” Owen bowed as he placed the plate of food in front of her.

She took a bite and moaned. “This is really good.”

“Thank you.” They continued to eat in companionable silence.

When they were finished, Amelia began. “I missed you. So much. Even though you were there I missed you. I need to come clean. I heard you. I heard every word you said to me. That you think I look like a duck…”

“I’m pretty sure that’s not what I said,” he laughed.

“That you love me. I definitely heard you scream at me to wake up. I’m sorry my brain was too slow to catch up. But I want you to know and understand that this was an accident. All of this everything we just went through was not your fault, okay?” When he wouldn’t meet her eyes, she forced him to. “Okay?”
“Okay,” he consented. “You heard everything?”

“Everything. One last thing to come clean about,” she said as she moved over to sit in his lap, wrapping her hands around his neck.

“What’s that?”

“I love you too.”