Hello again, Readers! Witch in the World has had a wonderful week! Many good things are happening in my life. I live in this beautiful part of the world (Phoenix) where the weather is now becoming absolutely blissful! I have great friends and family and things are just looking up!
I was also transitioned from a Temp to a permanent employee at my job, which is great news! Yes, as a Witch in the World, I’ve not (YET!) figured out how to pay the bills for my privileged luxuries (like food and shelter) without a day job. Some day, I hope to sustain myself entirely on Tarot Readings, Ritual Planning and Teaching the esoteric and nerdy things that I’ve learned, but for now, from Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm, I’m a paralegal for a fairly large national corporation.
This morning, in the break room, one of the attorneys in my department remarked to me, “So! I hear you are a Tarot Reader!”
I sort of froze and had an “ut-oh!” moment. I took some time to look at her and try to gauge (or divine) her feelings about such a thing. You never know whether such a statement will be followed by, “Can I get a reading?” or “You know you’re going to hell, right?”
It’s a shame that we still have to tense up about these things. I mean, she didn’t point at me and scream, “WIIITTCHHH!!!” … but it sort of feels that way sometimes if you think you’re being “outed” from the broom closet. You see, I’m quiet at work about my extra-curricular activities. Most people (at least in the corporate world) don’t think that Para-legal and Para-normal mix!
The company I work for is actually pretty progressive. I don’t think the “company” cares at all what my spiritual practice is. They, wisely, avoid the topic of religion altogether. Also the company seems accepting of “alternative” expressions. The first month I worked was LGBT awareness month. And there are a number of employees, even in the Legal department, sporting tattoos, piercings and purple hair. Many different styles of fashion are present as well. And I’m pretty certain there are a few other witches roaming the halls. (There is one lady in my building who has long black hair with one AWESOME white streak, who always wears black flowing clothing. I think I might need to chat with her at lunch some-time. Hopefully, I’ll find a non-threatening way to open the conversation!)
But all in all, I’m not “out-there” about my pagan private life at the office. The vast majority of the other employees portray a rather conservative look. And I’ve discovered that many of them are very religious and might be frightened, put-off or just plain freaked out to know there’s a witch in the mix. So I’m quiet. I’ve let one or two of the other paralegals know that I read Tarot in my spare time…. And it leaked.
I’m not so sure I want it widely known at the office that I’m a diviner. Being a Tarot Reader doesn’t make a person a witch, but there are those who would draw that conclusion. The thing here is that (probably) two things will happen:
- People will start asking for readings. Win! One already has! So my little moonlighting business grows! Awesome; and
- Some people will draw their ignorant conclusions and decide that I’m somehow mentally deficient in my belief in such “nonsense” – OR will be frightened that I might curse them <eye-roll> – OR (WORSE!) will become consumed with saving my soul.
And some of those folks in the second category may be in positions with influence over my employment – or at least over the atmosphere in which I work.
Now, as I said, it’s a progressive company and I highly doubt that I would be fired or even called out for being a witch on my own time. Besides, I am extremely good at my job and I have a kick-ass work ethic. So, I don’t think it would come to that.
(And let’s face it. The revolutionary warrior living in my soul would positively REJOICE at the opportunity to orchestrate a very large and VERY public fight over something like that!)
Still people could make my work day unpleasant if they were so inclined.
But there’s another way to look at this. That moment of “ut-oh”, when I get down to the truth of it, is just me worrying “What will they think of me?” And, of course, I have to remind myself that it’s only what I think of me that matters. And, honestly, MOST of these types of encounters end positively. The other person is, usually, either curious and sincerely interested or simply totally cool with the fact that I tell fortunes or cast spells or practice a different religion. So I have to ask myself, “Who’s the bigot there?”
Yes, I’ve been shunned, feared, treated rudely and, once, I believe, even horribly hexed by an entire congregation of folks holding themselves out to be “Christian”. (I’m quite certain that people who truly follow the teachings of Jesus Christ would like THOSE kinds of “Christians” to GET OFF THEIR SIDE!)
Sure, there’s more work to be done, but the fact is, that I see hope. I see more smiles than scowls. I feel more acceptance than rejection, more love than hate (as it always has been and will be, because, of the two, only Love is indestructible). There IS hope for us witches/pagans and folks of alternative spirituality, especially, if we RADIATE what we have gained from our respective practices. As a witch and priestess, I have come to understand that fear is never the answer when love is possible… and love is ALWAYS possible. If you show the world what happens when you LOVE your spirituality; when you LIVE your true nature – caring, healing, teaching, learning, embracing ALL that there is – the world won’t be able to turn you away, or judge you. They will be too busy admiring you and trying to figure out how you achieved that. So, shine brightly, my pagan friends. Be the first to embrace and show love instead of shrinking from the possibility of rejection. Be the first to be kind, to smile, to understand and to remember that each person before us is also part of that Nature that we worship. And they’ll know we are witches by our love!