The last two months have been primarily focused on preparing my session for PatheaCon. Yes, I’ve happily had my most recent programming submission accepted and I look forward to presenting again. Last year I had serious reservations about presenting at PCon again, primarily because the expense associated with getting me there is difficult to manage. I also wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to present on. I’ve enjoyed doing my devotional ritual session but I wanted to do something new. But by the time proposals to present were opened up I had a new idea that I was quite on fire about.
The result of this effort is a session called Advancing Devotional Practice. It will be held at 9am on Monday morning. You can find more information about it here: https://www.facebook.com/events/211650729169389/
I’m very excited about doing this session. It’s been cooking in my mind for several years in one form of another, so getting the material out of my head at last is a big step towards the completion of the follow-up to Walking the Heartroad that I’ve been v.e.r.y. s.l.o.w.l.y. working on.
If you happen to be attending PantheaCon in San Jose, CA, this year I would love to have you drop by my session and say hi. It should be an interesting session, if only because I’m going to open up a little bit about my own practice and the challenges I’ve encountered along the way. The presentation is designed as a combination lecture and discussion, so I’m hoping other people will be willing to share a little bit about their practice, too.
(If you don’t happen to be attending PantheaCon, I’m hoping to make the material available sometime in March in an alternative form. Of course, this alternative release won’t include the amazing discussion that will certainly be part of the actual session but you’ll still get to have a taste of it. And of course, if you happen to be in the Salt Lake City area in mid-January, I’ll be doing a local trial run of the material.)
There are other things advancing, too. For the past five years or so I’ve been focusing much more intently on the development of a ritual worship practice. Ritual training is part of my background but my pursuits since I finished school have been more detail-oriented, more theoretical, more hands-on, and more focused on the achievement of a more refined expression of worship. To that end I’ve pursued education and guidance from ritual experts of various stripes and invested a considerable amount of time to improve my own work at home.
For many years I’ve made use of an astral temple to Loki that I created (found?). I know what it looks like – at least in part. It’s grown more concrete the longer I use it. Not long ago I experienced a distinct superimposition of this temple and its vision on top of my physical worship space at home. This was not what I expected to happen but of course this was the next step in this work: the manifestation of an astral location in a physical one through the manipulation of physical objects specifically intended to channel astral markers. So this is the next step in my advancing practice of temple and icon worship.
The next stage of this on-going worship project is to develop a more precisely designed worship space in my home. It will still be primarily altar-based but the addition of particular elements and items will help establish the temple and reify its astral presence.
Part of this effort will involve the creation of a Loki icon as a dedicated spirit vessel, a “body” of sorts that will be more than just a visual representation and an enhanced version of the “window” that my icons have always acted as.
There are lots of layers to this work and lots of layers to my growing understanding of it. I don’t know how much I’ll feel like sharing over time but for now, it’s exciting to know what the next step is.
Blessed Yule to you all.