[Welcome to our column, Talking My Path. Here, polytheists, witches, and Pagans of any tradition are invited to discuss and celebrate their spirituality in a series of five short questions. If you would like to participate, don’t hesitate to email firstname.lastname@example.org.]
ev0ke: How do you define your particular tradition or path? Does it have a specific name?
AH: Years ago, I knew a wonderful man known as Mickster. He told me that I was a Dianic without the Wicca.
I love Diana the Huntress and tend to speak to her more than any other. I found her in a book when I was fourteen. Being a woman scorned appealed to me even then. I always spoke to the moon and it was nice to give her a name. Then I joined an internet forum in the late 1990s. I was told about Dianic Wicca. That didn’t appeal to me at all. I don’t follow the teachings of Z. Budapest nor am I a Neopagan.
As I am getting older, my feelings are more linked to my Scandinavian cousins. My father always liked Odin. He always said he would be off to Valhalla. I think I would like to join him.
ev0ke: Which Deities, powers, or other spirits are honoured in your tradition?
AH: I have respect for all gods and none. I believe in little folk. We call them Pharisees down here. Ugly little sods they are. I leave cream out for them on the main holidays of Beltane, Samhain and Yule.
I also follow the seasons. Being a farmer’s lass, you learn when to work with the seasons.
I think it helped that my late Nan would tell us to watch out for old oaks and mushroom rings. I swore I had seen Pharisees at the bottom of my bed and seen faces in the trees. She also spoke about Herne and his hounds riding through the night. Stories passed down though folklore.
ev0ke: Among the various festivals and holy days celebrated in your tradition, which is the most important to you, and why?
AH: Everyone loves Yule, mostly because it’s the same as the other event on the 25th of December. Same presents, same feasting, different deities. And same hangover. I love to decorate the house with green. No plastic. The Holly King sits in the corner next to Julbocken. I like it more because, in the UK, it means the sun is returning again. And in a few months, I can start buying plants for the garden again. Our holidays are season-based and we give thanks for all of them. Even the rainy ones.
ev0ke: Which texts, websites, or other resources would you recommend to someone interested in your traditions?
AH: I have none, mostly because I started this path a long time ago. I think they best way to learn is to do your own research or, as I did, join a pagan forum. As my late father said, “You can’t learn to fly by just reading Biggles.” Meaning you need to read and read.
ev0ke: Is there anything you would like to add, such as creative projects you are undertaking, festivals or events you will be attending, and so on?
AH: Everyone should go to one pagan moot in their lives. Or have one like I did. You will realise after the third drink that pagans are just normal people and totally barmy.
Also never preach your path. Pagan means freedom.