Written words, spoken spells

As promised, this blog post is about my upcoming projects. So here it goes. I began writing an introduction on Kali a few years back for pagan audiences. A lot of people in the witch community asked me about worshiping Kali and whether or not it was culturally appropriate. I took the opportunity to answer questions in a book format, covering Kali as a Hindu goddess, how she is worshiped in India, and symbolism in Hinduism. However as time went on, I felt I was doing the book a great disservice. It was littered with academic jargon, the research everywhere, and it felt dry and dense. I struggled writing it because translating certain things culturally posed a challenge as well. I knew what I understood intrinsically from the Hindu standpoint because I was born and raised as such and to not write it from that standpoint felt like sacrilege. I followed my own path which led me down many roads in witchcraft, but at my core remained Hindu. The confusion and identity crisis made it seem easier to merely write an academic discourse/textbook style version of the book. I didn’t need to personalize it. Yet…that was what the book needed.

So, I began anew. The book is still in the writing stages, but I am making headway. I detail my relationship to the divine feminine, the difficulties I faced then and now, plus growing up Hindu–as well as my journey to a path forged in magick. This book also talks about Devi in all her forms–including Kali. I discuss my own personal views on deities and the Source or All-Pervading-Reality (the all powerful capital S makes its appearance gaspah) and what I am continuing to learn. So when can we expect this book? Well, whenever it gets published. First, I need to finish it. Tall order, I know. My deadline? Another tall order….by this summer at the LATEST. Why did I give myself that deadline? I already have 1/2 of the book completed from before. While we are all under self and government imposed quarantines, what better time than now to finish projects that have been pushed to the wayside? This is the time to really focus–to go inward and ask your soul what it truly needs–check to see how connected you feel to the Source–and to nature and magick. What does my soul need? The answer is clear: to express myself in written words, spoken spells, and art.

The apothecary is another special project of mine. I have been working with alternative modalities of healing and energy to help cope with stress and chronic ailments for some time now. Before I go further though, major disclaimer here, I do NOT recommend abandoning medical treatments! On the contrary, I believe that holistic health can be used in conjunction with Western medicine. Again, I highly recommend that people always check with their physicians and pharmacists for any medical and herb/drug interactions before beginning any holistic therapy. That being said, the reason I am working on an apothecary project is because I’m extremely passionate about helping people feel better. I have seen way too much suffering. I’ve seen it in my loved ones, and in friends, and in the world in general. So what can I do? Thus far, I love making oil blends, sound baths, and using Reiki daily. I also want to focus on multiple disciplines within holistic healing modes–my main focus at the moment is in mental well-being (though sports injuries and chronic pain are also areas I’m working with). Having suffered from severe stress, I can attest to Reiki, Ayurveda, and holistic therapies having helped me in addition to Western medicine. When do I plan to launch this apothecary? At the moment, I don’t have a time frame yet. The book is the first project, and I am studying more with this one. I will regularly update though.

If you have made it this far, thank you! My next post will be on facing rising global challenges, shadow work in the spring, and a recipe for self-healing. Namaste.

The Lotus Reopened

Finally waking up and getting out of that broom closet once and for all!

“This above all; to your own self be true.” —William Shakespeare


It’s been a long road for me to say the word witch comfortably without wincing. Why? The connotation of the word witch has long suffered a curiously difficult journey. For me personally, I was well oriented with the negative connotations of that word. First, let me define the actual word and its origins. Merriam Webster gives us this standard explanation: a witch is someone who possesses supernatural powers, generally speaking, used for evil, and of course, female. However, to call someone bewitching has a more positive effect. Spell binding is another word with positive implications. Yet the word witch is associated with malevolence and fear. In researching Old English, simply put, a witch is someone who practices magic.

There are many indigenous cultures around the world where animism, shamanic practices, and rituals are commonplace. I’m familiar with this within my own background. In our modern day over the years, we have seen a rise in spirituality steeped in witchcraft. I myself took the first step at the age of eleven. Actually, let’s rewind. I knew I wanted to claim the title of the witch long before that–I felt it on a cellular level. I remember as a child that I could wander off somewhere and know exactly where I was going without ever feeling lost. I felt connected to those women who made concoctions, poultices, to those women who used mantras and fire rituals, and I knew I was one of them immediately.

I lived in India and America on and off for the first ten years of my life and was raised Hindu. There is certainly a lot of ritual within Hinduism. To me, it is a magical religion. But the term witch we grew up with was fraught with images of those who use their craft to harm others. The fear of the witch was real. Naturally, I didn’t use that term for myself. I just assumed that I was different, a freak of some kind. I didn’t feel like I belonged anywhere. When I moved to the US, the problem was further exacerbated by bullying. Ah, but then–I found a book at a local bookstore called Charms, Spells, and Formulas. It got my attention right away. The effect of that moment was instantaneous. It was as if it validated everything I was feeling. However, I still feared the word–and so I waited until I was a teenager to truly explore that side of myself.

I struggled with an identity crisis for a long time even after my initial awakening. I felt I was somehow betraying my culture because I was drawn to witchcraft. So I chose a culture outside but shunned my own in the process. The struggle only got worse when I encountered some trouble in a witch circle I was involved with; I really lost myself for a while and succumbed to the negativity around me. As a result, I began to fear the witch even more. I even shunned the witch part of me in favor of my own culture. But denying any part of myself meant I continued to keep one foot in the broom closet and the other one out. I know now that the fear lies in the potential stigmatization from friends and the community. However, as I learn more about my own religion, about the mystical sects within it, and from my own experiences in witchcraft, I have come to realize that practicing magick does not interfere with my ethnic or religious background. I slowly started to open up again like a lotus, bit by bit. I am finally free to put both feet out of the broom closet!

Stay tuned! My next post will be about my work in progress: a book and a plan for an apothecary. Thank you for joining me on my journey!