Friday, May 21, 2010

Main Speaker Gig at Heartland Pagan Festival 2010

I will be one of the featured speakers at the 25th annual Heartland Pagan Festival, which starts May 27th and continues through the Memorial Day weekend until May 31st. This pagan festival is located in Kansas as the Camp Gaia spiritual retreat, a large campground owned and maintained by the local pagan community. Not too many groups can boast of having a pagan spiritual retreat that is owned and operated by local pagans, so it will be interesting to see how this site has been maintained and developed. I remember this site when it was first brought into use, some many years ago, and it needed a lot of development then. From what I have heard, a lot has been done to make this site more hospitable. I will write up a report about the festival and my perceptions of the event and the retreat site - hopefully, there will a few pictures as well.

The schedule of events has not yet been released, so I have no idea when exactly I will be giving my workshops. I believe, as a main speaker, I will be conducting my classes in time slots that are exclusive, so they should be well attended. You can find a link to the festival website here.

Classes that I am going to conduct for Heartland 2010 -

Title:  22 Steps of the Cycle of Initiation - Transformative Journeys
When & Where: Unknown
Description:  This lecture and discussion group will examine Joseph Campbell's 22 stages Hero's Underworld Cycle and compare them to the 22 trumps of the Major Arcana of the Tarot. This comparison will illuminate both the meanings of the Tarot as well as power of the Hero's Journey as it applies to individual spiritual transformation. We will also examine the Feminine Cycle of the Heroine, based on the myth of Cupid and Psyche.

I have already presented this information in a previous article, although not the in-depth analysis and exposition that the attendees of this class will be getting. However, knowing that the Tarot trumps can be perceived as being the stages of transformative initiation is a very important tool that helps one to build and facilitate initiation mystery rites for oneself or others.

Title:  Elemental Magick - Using the Energy Theory of Magick
When & Where: Unknown
Description:  This lecture/discussion group will examine the definitions and nature of the energy theory of magick and how it can be applied to produce more advanced methods of magick. We will examine the Vortex, Pyramid of Power and the Octagon as magickal mechanisms of empowerment.

The workshop will go over the basic structures and mechanisms that underlie an advanced use of the Energy model of ritual magick. The goal of this class will be to thoroughly cover all the things that one might need in order to put together a ritual to invoke Elemental spirits. I will be handing out a class outline with the ritual pattern to perform this kind of magick. Hopefully this material will be well received and there will be some who might even put together a ritual based on this pattern. That is my hope, so we shall see how well I present this material and what kind of questions or communication problems occur.

Title: History of the First HPF 1986
When & Where: Unknown
Description: This lecture/discussion group will talk about the first Heartland Pagan Festival, how it was started and what happened. This is a kind of history lesson, but with lots of amusing things to share and recollect. I have notes and other media sources that we can read together and examine. Sometimes, in order to know where you are going, you need to know what has happened in the past. Since I helped start the HPF tradition, it’s suitable for me to discuss what happened and who was involved.

Here are couple of snippets from the workshop - keep in mind that all of this happened in Kansas City back in the ‘80's:

“The First Heartland Pagan Festival was held the weekend of June 27 through 29, 1986, at the Camp Hammond camp ground facilities. The hosting organization was called Council of the Southwind, which had been formed as late as the autumn of 1985. The original name for this festival was called the “Midwest Pagan Festival”, but that was changed in the early process of organizing this event.

It all started on a cool somewhat rainy Sunday, August 18, 1985, at Antioch Park by the lake. This was the site of the Rune Picnic, one of several to come. I had met both Mariel and Misraelia (their magickal names) at Mike Nichol’s classes on Modern Witchcraft. Anyway, someone was talking about PSG and how it was so far away, making it unlikely for many of us locals to be able to attend. I dismissed PSG and said, “We should just put together our own pagan festival for the local people.” I believe that Misraelia said rather dryly, “Then why don't you do it.” I was taken aback somewhat, then I remember thinking to myself (which I did out loud), “Yeah, we could do it. It can’t be that hard to put on a festival for maybe two or three nights.” Little did I know that what I was suggesting was actually a lot more difficult than I had any idea about, having never done anything this large before.”

There is so much history in the wiccan and pagan movement, which started in the fifties and sixties of the last century. Sharing this information with younger members is vitally important in my opinion. The past should be preserved by the telling of tales, so that’s probably why I have told such long winded tales about my past. Some day I should pull them altogether and publish a kind of biography.

Frater Barrabbas

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