To use this spell you must be able to picture the evil you wish to bind within your mind.
It is very important to be able to see strands or bonds or knots that hold it together. Those are what you are going to release slowly.
Do note that this spell can take a long time depending on the strength and complexity of the evil. You must imagine yourself undoing the knots or bonds and then say out loud as many times as needed:
“I bind this evil from doing harm
To those around us And itself
I bind it to be free But not harmful.”

You MUST do this slowly.
If you do it quickly and try to overwhelm the evil it could overwhelm you
or just manifest on it’s evil on the energy you are giving out.
If you plan to do this spell please be very careful and know that it is very draining.



In Hecate’s name we bind ____ to the flame
May she bring nightmares, depression, and pain
We cast ____ to the wind, that all know ____ shame
May Hecate envelope ____ in the threefold law May all forget ____’s shame, their harm, their call
May their ability to raise magic fall on deaf walls
We join our energies fellow friends in the Craft
May Hecate stop ___’s harm in the future, present and past
Only when their deeds are reversed will this binding be uncast
So Mote It Be!

Bruised and Battered

Bruised and Battered

Cut a branch from a year old tree, pronouncing the name of your antagonist as you do. Take the branch  home. When night falls, lay it on a thick carpet. Name your enemy aloud again, and beat the branch as hard as you can (but don’t break it). The person  will wake up the next morning as bruised and sore as if he’d been beaten.



If you need to banish something from your life, prepare a pot of soup.
Draw a banishing pentagram in the soup, then stir nine times counterclockwise, saying:
“Blessed Lord, gracious Lady, hear my plea.
Remove (insert what needs removal) from me.
For the good of all, with harm to none;
once this is eaten, the spell is done!” Eat the soup.



mugwort angelica

3 hairs of an imposing beast

black cloth

oil of frankincense or myrrh

Mix the mugwort and angelica in equal parts, add to it the 3 hairs and bind together in a black cloth.  Add a few drops of the oil onto the cloth. then say
” He who is strong, he who is mighty
Lend thine power to this charm
Demons turn on your heels and run”
Draw over it a pentagram and the charms of banishment. Burn the mixture to drive away the spirits that ail you. Burn it in your home or room you wish to exorcise. Bury it before your doorstep and no demon shall touch you nor enter. Wear the charm or hide it in the roof to ensure safety against any ills.



White candle; Favorite incense; Brown paper;
Lead pencil; Spoonful of used coffee grounds
Light a white candle and your favorite incense.
Meditate a short while on the problem. Invoke the Spirits of Protection.
Take a piece of brown paper, like from a grocery bag, on it use a lead pencil to print and
write the name of the offending person or people.
If unknown people are involved, also print and write,
‘and all persons unknown that are causing harm to me!’
Cross off each line forcefully and say, forcefully: I freeze name(s) to be bound by this
spell, unable to cause any more harm to (name(s)! As I will, so mote it be!
Put a spoonful of used coffee grounds on the brown paper, fold it small, and place it in the freezer.
Leave it until the problem is completely resolved.
I wrap a rubber band, string, twist tie, or what have you, to keep the coffee grounds from
falling out of the paper. You can also use a zip lock bag.
Be sure and burn the candle completely up. Don’t use that candle for a different purpose.

Guided Meditation for Young Children

Guided Meditation for Young Children
Author: LynxSeer

Most of your meditations are focused on bringing balance into your life. Meditation is a great way to calm the mind. Therefore so can your children. You can do a guided meditation with a your child (as young as a toddler) or let the older children guide themselves. I’ve found meditation a great way to have arguing siblings calm down enough to come together with their differences.

Grounding and Centering to Calm Angry or Frustrated Young Minds

Here the child will be writing numbers on the blackboards in their mind, each time they erase them they will feel more calm and collected and more ‘themselves’ without the anger and frustration. Speak in a quiet soothing voice. I’ve written this in my own voice, feel free to make it your own.

Have the child lay on their back, in front of you (don’t try to touch them, this will just increase the energy they already can’t control.

*Close your eyes taking a deep breath.

*[You’ll guide them in re-connecting to their own energy with speaking.] Begin at your feet (‘become aware of your toes, relaxing as your laying. Become aware of your ankles…then calves…then knees…etc. up through the head.)

*Feel the ground beneath you, the energy of the earth seeping into you through your shoulders and rear. Let the energy of the earth take your anger and frustration. Let your mind quiet.

*Picture a large blackboard in your mind. You are standing in front of it.

*Pick up a piece of chalk. Draw a large circle on the blackboard.

*Begin with the number 10. Draw it within the chalk circle.

*There is an eraser in your right hand.

*Use the eraser to wipe away the number in long stokes, leaving the circle intact.

*Write the number 9…….Doing this all the way down to 1 (you can also direct the calming energy…generally at number 5 I again remind them that with each number they are growing more calm.)

*Erase the number 1.

*The blackboard slowly fades from your mind.

*Take a deep breath and open your eyes.

*Take a moment before stretching your revitalized muscles awake.

Here are some tips for doing meditation with children. This is my Autumnal Equinox Guided Meditations but they can be used throughout the year, really.

Meditation with the very young child: (ages 2 – 6)

Meditation with the very young child is more teaching them to focus and ‘stop’ for a few moments. This will not last long as a young child has a hard time staying focused for more than a couple of minutes – so don’t try to make them do longer. The simplest thing you can do with a very young child (or a child who has never tried meditation) is the Bell or Gong. You can also do this technique with a crystal glass partially filled with water.

*Have the child lay in a comfortable position.

*Have them close their eyes and take a few deep breathes.

*Speak soothingly to them for a few moments to sharpen their focus: “do you hear the birds?” do you feel the breeze on your skin?

*Tell them you are going to ring the bell. Tell them to follow the sound with their ears and to not open their eyes until the sound goes quiet.

*Gently ring the bell or tap the crystal – something that makes a sound that slowly fades.

*When they open their eyes ask what they felt, how did the bell sound, etc.

*You may find a child will tell you the sound never goes away completely – this is scientifically true – the sound waves just move out of range of our hearing. Children love this concept and will tell you a million eye-opening things about the sound of the ‘bell’.

Meditation with the young child: (ages 6 – 11)

As you both sit outside, ask the child what they did this year? What was the favorite thing they did this summer? Have them describe it in detail. You can go so far as to explain how that wouldn’t have been possible without the Gods blessing you with good weather.

First Guided Meditation – Thankful for a beautiful Summer. Lets go to the beach!!

(You can also use a fountain, swimming pool, whatever kind of water the child is familiar with) {Note: I’ll tell this as I tell it, in my voice, feel free to make it your own as you know your children and what they can connect with}

*Lay down

*Close your eyes and take a few deep breathes.

*Feel your body getting heavy, as if it will sink into the ground.

*I’m going to count slowly to ten, keep breathing and relaxing {1, 2, your getting a little heavy. 3, 4, 5, your arms are too heavy to lift, 6, 7, 8, you feel the breeze softly caressing your skin, 9, 10}

*You see a hallway in front of you in your mind. There is a door at the end that is closed.

*Walk through the door onto a beach on a warm sunny day.

*In your mind, just feel yourself standing still for a moment looking around, seeing the waves wash against the shoreline in their regular rhythms, over and over again. Hear the soft whoosh of the waves. And the kee-kee of the sea gulls.

*Watching the waves, breathe with them. Take a beep breath in as the waves wash to shore, breathe out as the water recedes.

*As you breathe with the waves you feel the sun shining down on you. It feels warm and soft – like a hug. It is a hug from the Mother Goddess. She’s glad you are here, enjoying her beach.

*Enjoy this hug from the Goddess. Feel warm and comfortable and relaxed in her embrace.

*When enough time has passed, begin to come back to your everyday active self. Turn around and see the doorway again.

*Walk through the door into the hallway. I’m going to count backwards from 10 as your body wakes up. {10, you can feel slight tingles in your toes and fingers, 9, 8, your body is getting lighter, 7, 6, 5, you are again aware of the air around you, 4, 3 you can feel the ground beneath you, 2, 1, open your eyes}

*Stretch out those limp arms and legs, take a deep breath, and sit up.

*Do you feel your new energy, all set and ready to go again!

Second Guided Meditation – Thankful for a beautiful Summer. Lets go to the fields!!

*Lay down

*Close your eyes and take a few deep breathes.

*Feel your body getting heavy, as if it will sink into the ground.

*I’m going to count slowly to ten, keep breathing and relaxing {1, 2, your getting a little heavy. 3, 4, 5, your arms are too heavy to lift, 6, 7, 8, you feel the breeze softly caressing your skin, 9, 10}

*Imagine walking through a beautiful meadow on a warm sunny day.

*In your mind, just feel yourself standing still for a moment looking around, seeing the tall brightly colored wild flowers blowing in the gentle breeze, hear the breeze passing over the grass, the bees buzzing for nectar.

*Watching the flowers nodding in the breeze, breath with them. *Breathe out as the breeze blows; inhale as it ceases.

*As you breathe with the flowers you feel the sun shining down on you. It feels warm and soft – like a hug. It is a hug from the Mother Goddess. She’s glad you are here, enjoying her beautiful meadow.

*Enjoy this hug from the Goddess. Feel warm and comfortable and relaxed in her embrace. Her breath is the breeze gently caressing your skin.

*When enough time has passed, begin to come back to your everyday active self.

*I’m going to count backwards from 10 as your body wakes up. {10, you can feel slight tingles in your toes and fingers, 9, 8, your body is getting lighter, 7, 6, 5, you are again aware of the air around you, 4, 3 you can feel the ground beneath you, 2, 1, open your eyes}

*Stretch out those limp arms and legs, take a deep breath, and sit up. Do you feel your new energy, all set and ready to go again!

Meditation with the older child: (ages 11 – 14)

An older child is better able to connect by grounding and centering. They should have enough self-control to shut out outside noises and distractions (otherwise how would they do their homework..hehehe) Therefore you don’t have to do as much, you can let them develop their own minds with meditation. Especially these Sabbats meditations for thankfulness. I suggest you sit with them and do your own meditation – because as a child learns to shut out the outside world they can get a little frightened – they are so used to the stimuli.

Explain that we are thankful for all we have done and experienced through the year. You can even make a list of special events – or work on a scrapbook (I love scrapbooking with my kids) . As life goes on, it is in caring interactions that we find joy and happiness. Explain the steps of the meditation to them before beginning. As you go through your own meditation – only speak softly occasionally to move to the next step – otherwise, let the child progress on their own to fill in the mental images.

Guided Sitting Meditation:

*Sit cross-legged, back held straight, and face each other.

*Clasp your hands and let them rest in your lap.

*Close your eyes.

*Breathe easily and evenly, in and out. Silently count each breath in as one count, and each breath out as one count, till 50 counts – 50 breathes. (Breathing in is 1, breathing out is 2, etc)

*Now, while continuing to breathe evenly, take some time to think about the event or person you are most thankful for. Relive the experience (s) in your mind. What were your favorite parts? Who was there? Do you feel the sun on your skin?

*Continue breathing deeply and evenly. Imagine writing a letter of thanks to the Goddess. Thank Her for this time you so greatly enjoyed. Thank Her for your family and friends.

*Imagine folding the letter into a paper airplane and sending it to Her on the breeze.

*Continue breathing deep and evenly.

*Think about some ways you can show Her and your family your appreciation of them.

*Again become aware of your body. How do your feet feel? Your legs, torso, arms head?

*Take a final deep breath in, slowly let it out, open your eyes, stand up, and stretch.

Step-Parenting (It’s Not For Wimps!)

Step-Parenting (It’s Not For Wimps!)
Author: Rune Fox

Everyone comes about becoming a parent for the first time in different ways. Most have children born to them, while others adopt. No matter what, any woman may have maternal instincts inside her that loves and protects. Perhaps it is the Goddess in all of us.

My children came to me in a most unexpected way. I fell in love. I met Jim at the end of last summer. Having a string of bad relationships, being sexually assaulted, and a bitter broken engagement in the past, I had stayed single for a few years. I gave up all hope of having a life of my own. I met Jim through a blind date. Not expecting much of anything, Jim and I instantly clicked. I know it sounds corny, but I think there was love at first sight. It just so happens that Jim is a divorced father with primary custody.

Now, I’m blessed to have two beautiful children in my life, along with my soulmate, Jim. They are my stepdaughter Ariel, who is 9 and a half, and my stepson Taylor, who is 13.

Having been previously single with no children of my own before, I’d say my new family has adjusted well. I love my stepchildren as if they were my own flesh and blood, and they return their love to me and have accepted me as a parent figure. A person could not ask for more wonderful stepchildren. They really are a dream come true!

The only problem is that Jim’s ex-wife hates me so much, she would speak ill about me around the children. I just don’t understand why she hates me, without even knowing me. She is a so-called “Born -again Christian”. Bear in mind, I have many Christian friends whom I love dearly, so I know full well that hate is NOT a Christian trait. (Or at least it shouldn’t be!)

The biological mother treats the children as if they were her possessions, not as human beings. She has anger management issues, and was court-ordered to seek help. She failed to do so, and does everything she can to make life a living nightmare for everyone involved. There are the unfortunate pawns in her childish games.

It would be nice if someday, Jim’s ex-wife will wake up and realize that she is not doing herself or her children any favors by being hateful. I am really not trying to say that I’m better than her, or that she has no place in their lives at all. That fact remains that she is their birth mother. Nothing will ever change that fact. Removing her from their lives completely would probably do more harm than good to the children, even if it would make life easier for Jim and I.

Jim and I try to be the voice of reason in the children’s lives. Hey, we may not be perfect, but at least we’re stable. Ariel seems to be most bothered by her mother’s hurtful behavior the most. I try to assure her that it doesn’t bother me. After all, I am a U.S. Army veteran, having served in Iraq. There isn’t much that will shake MY tree!

It does hurt me to see Ariel become someone else when she has tantrum-like trances out of frustration. After she comes out of them, she is very apologetic and embarrassed. All I can do is hold her while she cries while she cools down.

Both of the children are in counseling. However, while their mother is in the picture, they don’t seem to be making much progress. I have to remind myself that it is a long, painful process, and all I can do is be patient.

I’d be lying if tell you that I haven’t thought to myself “why am I here? Life was sooooo much simpler on my own! Why not just walk away from it all?

I just can’t walk away, because those kids need me, and I need them. They are what make life worth living! When Ariel looks up at me, smiles, and says “I want to be just like you when I grow up!” and then gives me a huge hug. We go for walks in the woods and build fairy houses.

Taylor is an extremely bright young man who tends to take in frustration rather than act it out. He his smarter than many adults I know. Even so, he is on the way to failing the seventh grade. It breaks my heart when he calls himself stupid.

Even though it is well known that teenagers can be difficult to relate to, Taylor will become bubbly and silly. He will often ask me to play a game of Dungeons and Dragons with him, or ask to go on a hike or go surfing with me. Of course, I think it is just wonderful, because it gets him away from the computer, video games, and television.

I’m sure you’ve heard that saying “It takes a real man to be a father!” The same holds true for motherhood.

I have not yet experienced the joy of being pregnant or the pain of giving birth. I watch women and have been there when some of my friends have enjoyed being pregnant. Even though it sounds terrible, I just couldn’t help but feel envious! Life is itself is such a gift. How wonderful it must be to give life?

Having traveled around the world and seeing the worst that human nature has to offer, I have seen my share of pain, in others and myself. I was once a victim of rape. Needless to say, I had trust issues with men for a long time, as well as people in general. This is probably why I stayed single for quite some time. Now, I’m not looking for pity. Somehow, through professional help and personal strength, I am now a more wary individual. I still believe everything happens for a reason.

Jim and I have decided to try for a child between the both of us. Ariel has already “put in her order for a baby sister.” Now, if that’s not cute, I don’t know what is! We may allow Taylor and Ariel help name the child, once we know when or if we become blessed with another. I will make it very clear form the start that I will always love both them just as much a new baby.

Being a stepmother has prepared me for the next step, if it comes. It has healed my spirit and gave me the strength to take whatever life has to dish out. I am prepared to give my life to my stepchildren, if anyone dares to try hurting them.

There is no love like the love for a child. It is love in its purist form, no matter where it comes from.

Raising Children As a Pagan Parent

Raising Children As a Pagan Parent
Author: Josie

Because my beliefs are not the norm for my culture, I often wonder if I am raising my children well. I wandered into the path of Witchcraft when my oldest child was 2 years old. There was never the awkward moment of having to tell them that mommy was a witch and what that means. They grew up with the chants of the Pagan group Libana as their lullabies: “The Earth, the Air, the Fire, the Water, return, return, return, return. . .” In my arms, they watched me cast spells before they could speak or walk. Crystals, herbs, candles constantly burning, my creations of essential oils, Books of Shadows and ceremonial robes, swords, wands, staves, and chalices were their mundane world.

My children will never be like ordinary children at any point in their lives, and, I suppose, in many ways this is good. They will never wonder about being good enough to get into heaven. They will never fear “God’s Wrath.” They will not tally up the “sins” they’ve committed and worry about being saved. They will never feel that sex is evil and have extreme guilt for “doing it.” There is so much they won’t beat themselves up about, but there are also ways in which they may lose out.

Have you ever noticed that if someone meets a devout Christian, who is raising his children to be devout Christians, he is applauded for rearing his children with a belief system and a faith in this “faithless society”? But if you say that you are Wiccan, Pagan, Druid or another non-mainstream religion (after you’ve explained to them what you’re talking about) , they ask if you are giving them exposure to Christianity and giving them the option to be Christian.

At first my reaction is, “Why would we have to do that? Do you expose your children to other religions and give them the option to follow other beliefs? Have you taken your son to a Buddhist temple or a Wiccan circle to give him that experience?”

But in a way they are right – not about the religious part, but about the exposure. Imagine your child going to college and having to examine William Blake’s “Songs of Innocence” or Shakespeare’s “Henry V” and not knowing anything about Christian doctrine. It would be the same as studying Chinese poetry without knowing anything about Taoism or Confucianism.

But how much exposure to Christianity do our children need? How much leeway do we give them for their own beliefs?

I was raised in a fairly non-religious house, which, in this culture, means that we did not go to church, but we were still Christian. In fact, years ago when I told my parents I was Pagan, for the first time in their lives, they wanted to “save me.” “I already saved myself, thank you.” My mother was so disturbed that any “New-Age” music, including Enya, instantly gave her a migraine simply because she associated it with Paganism. It took them years to understand my beliefs and still more before they accepted them. I am sure that during those years they asked themselves, “Where did we go wrong?”

As Pagan parents, should we feel obligated to raise our children to believe only what we believe? Or should we expose them to our culture’s mainstream beliefs so they are not so shocked when they enter school or meet other children? In these days when Child Protective Services can take your children from you before they prove you are endangering them, are we afraid to let our children be open about what we practice? Can you imagine the commotion your child would create if he goes to school with the symbol of the Horned-one on his t-shirt?

In truth, I do not have simple answers to these questions. Everyone’s circumstances are different. Some of us can be more open without fear; other cannot. I can tell you what I’ve done and what I’ve learned, and I hope that my lessons may guide you in your and your children’s journey.

I’ve learned never to cling to any dogma so tight that if it shatters, chunks of me go with it. I constantly write down my ideas, not so that they are written in stone, but so that I won’t forget them and I can see how they and I have changed and grown. What I believed fifteen years ago is vastly different from what I believe today. What I believed last year is different from what I believe today. I constantly experiment, ask questions, read new topics and theories in order to learn more and test my ideas and beliefs. I never say, “So I’ve reach enlightenment now and this is the truth.”

So then what do I teach my children as “the truth” if “my truth” constantly changes? What do I teach them if my only stable ideal is that of learning and a willingness to change my beliefs if new evidence arises and new epiphanies are had?

Well, that is a good place to start. Teach them to read everything that interests them. Teach them that although you do not know what the truth of life, the universe and everything actually is, that you search for it, that you have theories, and that you are open to new ideas, and they should be too. Tell them your theories on everything from creation to the Gods. When you struggle with the validity of your beliefs, let them know what these struggles are. After you’ve reached new conclusions tell them about it. Have you ever thought of asking your children, “What is God?” Maybe their answers will surprise you.

Next, teach them some of the fundamentals of our beliefs that are less likely to change.

Revere the Earth for She is our Mother as well as our Home. The more we do to protect Her, the better our future will be. The more we neglect or harm her, the worse our future will be. Some may call Her Gaia or Mother Earth, but She is a constant in nearly all Pagan belief systems. With this reverence, speak to them the mantra of recycle, reduce, reuse, so that we may harm Her less than past generations did.

Teach them to understand the Wheel of the Year as a beautiful, never ending dance that celebrates nature in all its phases. It does not matter whether we call it Beltane or someone else calls it May Day; it is the principles behind the holidays that are important: a celebration of life, a celebration of change, and a celebration of the natural world.

Show them how the Moon, La Luna, in Her many guises represents our own lives and the stages through which we go. We all share the experience of going through waxing, mature, waning and dark phases in our lives, and She is our nightly reminder of this fact. Her monthly journey mirrors our own.

Encourage them to do Magick on their own. The skills we initially strive to learn when we start out on the Path (meditation and visualization) , children have not yet forgotten – they just call it daydreaming and imagination. Children are naturally more creative and Magickal than adults. They may surprise you by their ability. Teach them to cast spells in a very natural way. There is no need for ritual even as an adult, so teach them simple chants and spells.

I have had wonderful success with all children over four years old, whom I have taught to do simple meditations and spells. Teaching them to utilize these skills before they lose them will mean that they won’t struggle with re-learning them as many of us did.

Let your children figure out whom the Gods are for themselves, for if the adults were not sure, why would we expect them to know. Even in our own Pagan culture we call Divinity by many different names and we see a myriad of Its faces. Imparting a simple openness to the idea that everyone sees the Divine in a different way will negate the fear of exploration of your children’s own spirituality.

I spent most of my childhood communing with nature. I was the youngest of six children, and my closest sibling was five years older than I was. I grew up in the country with no one my age living nearby. I spent many a day buried in a pit of dry oak leaves melding with the natural world. My playmates were chickens and dogs. Even at a young age, I had a unique concept of God. I am very glad my parents did not try to supplant that with their own vision (even if it was through laziness) . It allowed me to grow at a natural pace.

Give to them that love of all things natural. Show them the magic of sitting under a tree, watching the clouds, and growing things in the ground. Even if some of us are not outdoorsy types, who among us does not feel uplifted by the first crisp fall morning or the first sweet drops of snow in winter, the smell of the ocean breeze or the brilliant colors of the first spring flowers.

Tell them to respect other people. For everyone, no matter his or her age or intelligence or belief system has something to teach you. Everyone has a unique perspective – this is the gift of diversity.

Demonstrate the courage, that although we may not advertise our beliefs, it is okay to be different and it is fine to believe things that not many others believe. To find the courage to hold our own in the face negative reactions and the desire to fit in is difficult, but we can be that example to educate our children to find it within themselves.

As far as what they should or should not tell others, use your judgment. Your situation may be different than mine. I homeschool my children, so I do not have to worry about what they say in school, because for us school is the playroom. But even so, there are people with whom we are comfortable telling all and there are people with whom we are not. It would be a wonderful world if all diversity was accepted, but it is not so. I feel that as long as I give them love and teach them acceptance of their ideas, they will be fine.

We’re Not Like Other Families

We’re Not Like Other Families
Author: RedBeanSidhe

Have you ever found yourself saying this to your kids? “We’re not like most other families. We’re different.” How do you feel when you say those words?

I know how I felt having to say that to my kids. My heart sank when I heard the words roll out of my mouth. I felt like I was setting my kids up for a harder life. I felt as if I was alone in a large uncaring society, and leading my kids to learn to feel the same way as I did when those words came out of my mouth.

I debated for a long time over it. Even made up ‘pro and con lists’ in my head just to try and figure out what, if anything, I was doing wrong.

I am a pagan mother of seven boys. Then to top that off I have an extended large family. I still have yet to find another large pagan family such as ours. AND… I home school. I am happy homeschooling, and I believe my kids are too, but sometimes looking at everything I am shocked at what a large load I have put on my kids. It is a lot to take in if you were not the one experiencing it. Could you imagine?

So after all the worrying and debating I asked my oldest, “How does it feel to be different?”

Then this 12-year-old son of mine answered me the way only a kid could.

“What do you mean different? I don’t feel any different. I feel like myself.”

I smiled and then felt put in my place. We’re not really different. When I asked him how he felt about our family, he said, “Well, our family is extraordinary.”

Overall, when you really get down to thinking about things, and how some things might appear to be different, just put things into perspective. Perhaps you aren’t all that different. Maybe it’s just the way you think about things. The ‘burden’ I thought I was giving my kids was actually just my desire for them to have an open mind and a different perspective on how our family exists.

See, I think my perspective comes from how I was raised. I was raised very Christian. I was in the church nursery as a baby. My mom was the Sunday school teacher when I got older. I knew the Bible, and it was a contest between the preacher’s son and me as to who knew all the answers in class.

We had weekly dinners with the preacher and his family. I went to youth service on Wednesdays, as I got older. I had a lot of questions though, and as my mom said, good Christians don’t have questions. they just have faith. So I knew I had problems because I couldn’t stop asking questions.

I wasn’t a good Christian. I couldn’t just believe. I had too many conflicts. I tried to talk to my mom, and I told her I didn’t like having a God I was afraid of. I explained that it’s not right when you fear God.

In response, I was told, you should fear God. It makes you a better Christian to know you will be punished if you don’t accept him and Jesus.

I just couldn’t win. I tried to talk to the preacher, who told me my mom could explain things to me. And when I talked to my mom, I got no answers.

I swore that growing up my children would not have to face the things I did. I found Paganism when I was younger.

I told my mom, “Those people who were hugging the tree looked so happy”.

My mom said, “They should be. They are all going to hell.”

I said, “Well, if all the people at our church are going to heaven, why are they all so sad?”

She replied. “Life is hard. There is nothing easy about it.”

I got books and read in private, figuring out my religion. When we had children we agreed that they would be able to pick their religion and they would be educated.

When my 12-year-old son had done some research and told me he chose Paganism, I must admit, my heart skipped a beat. But what he doesn’t know, he wasn’t raised to know, are the hardships involved. It’s both a blessing and a curse for him.

I have explained the secrets he will have to keep from his grandma. Some people won’t agree with his choice and he will have to either keep his faith secret or deal with this.

Overall though, still he doesn’t see us as different. It’s a wonderful thing that he doesn’t take to heart all the hardships. He doesn’t see us as different because he was not raised to see anyone differently. I figured by his age these things would have come into perspective for him, but they haven’t.

What a wonderful experience, not being different! Having a large family, and being Pagan is just natural for my child. Maybe for other children of mine too, someday. I believe some will be Christian, some will be pagan, and maybe some will venture beyond these boundaries and dive headfirst into their own religious freedom to choose something totally different.

I will take them to the local Hindu temple. They go to church on occasion. We have been to two local Universal Unitarian churches. In the words, being ‘different’ is good because everyone is ‘different’. If we were all the same, the world would just be boring.

It’s true. Everyone is different. It’s just something we deal with throughout life. Maybe it’s not such a horrible thing to be ‘different’ and some of our children don’t even think we’re ‘different’ at all. It really puts things into perspective to believe that any religion, sincerely held and practiced, is just fine.

If you are not taught to believe that ‘different’ religions are bad, then they aren’t.