This edition of Pagan Voices is a spotlight on Pagan women of color within our community support of Black Lives Matter. Women of color are the backbone of many of our communities and their leadership and wisdom have supported us time and again.
The trauma experienced by the Black community and other people of color within white-majority societies is palpable. Oppression, discrimination, and violence are all too commonplace occurrences for many people of color everywhere.
The Wild Hunt reached out to some of the women of color within the Pagan community and asked them to share whatever they felt our readers needed to know. Their messages reflect their wisdom and their hope but also their anger, their rage over the injuries, and the healing that the world must seek.
Sarah Penn shared this wisdom,
During this most painful time what I wish that every person that is not a person of color would do, is take a moment to boldly and bravely ask themselves where anti-blackness lives within them. To bravely call it out where we see it, and begin that process with ourselves. The only way to heal something is to name the problem, and then bring it out in the lights to fully examine it, and the sooner we do it the better.
–Sarah Penn, eclectic practitioner, Black and Proud
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Sangoma Oludoye offered these thoughts,
In Seasons Such As This we are striving to navigate what’s real, what is not?
Who are we in BEcoming as we and our Mother Earth are healing…this rabbit hole is an abyss into the Underworld globally,
Innertracking brings inner peace. Viruses are catalysts and agents of great change,
Honor the dead, respect the Living and prepare for those waiting to be born…
-Sangoma Oludoye, Traditional Yoruba Priestess of Orisha and the Ancestors
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Clio Ajana reminded us of the ongoing challenges in her column from last August, Purging Injustice:
Cell phone video and the public recording now expose other injustices such as police brutality more frequently. What can be replayed on video allows everyone to judge what happened.
This has changed how some perceive and accept police authority. There is a shift from the benevolent, protective role of the police officer to one of attacker. Each step of potential justice served starts to re-build the reputation of the police as benevolent protectors for all.
However, a purging and transformation of injustice comes when we each face our own biases head-on, without ignoring what is around us or pretending that things will get better without our acknowledgement or interference.
We live in a time that is not unlike an itch that is scratched so hard the skin bleeds. Our skin needs time to heal; and continued trauma will only make things worse or keep the pain at a constant level.
As individuals, we have the choice to scratch until we bleed and keep scratching, or we can choose to clean our wounds and stop scratching.
Clio shared another column yesterday Wake Up Call – George Floyd and Living While Black in 2020. She wrote “As a black woman, I hear that and think of the last words of George Floyd, when he called out ‘Mama.’ My heart clenched.”
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Lilith Dorsey shared these powerful words,
I’ve gotten a lot of phone calls and texts lately. I’ve started referring to them as white guilt moments. Now some, albeit a very small portion, of these were heartfelt, genuine, and welcome. The bulk have left me with a bad taste in my mouth, and a disgusted feeling in my stomach. If you’re wondering if I am talking about you…in the words of my favorite song…if you feel like the shoe fits, bitch put it on.
In the past I’ve written and created a lot of content, as well as taught workshops on racism in the Witchcraft community. I’m astounded that people who have a serious history of persecution will turn around and hate and persecute others. Recent events like the murder of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, and so many more have put the spotlight on the horrifying treatment of Black people in the United States by police and society at large. While it is long past time that this country and its residents realize and recognize what’s going on.
Many allies in the Witchcraft and Pagan communities have been turning over their platforms to Black witches at this time. All I can say is better late than never. And to the racist police, and systemic oppressors, and cultural appropriators (in the words of a popular #BlackLivesMatter protest sign): “We are not our ancestors, We will fuck you up.”
–Lilith Dorsey, Voodoo Priestess
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Thunder Breath Walker asked us to breathe with her,
With all of the energy and chaos around us it’s important to stay grounded and Reach For Another Human Being. Reach out and gain knowledge of love and support to what makes us different and what makes our difference Beautiful. It’s takes us all to dance in rhythm to make this planet better. Breathe with Me!
-Thunder Breathe Walker, Energy Worker
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