My Papa died at the end of June. He was my mother’s father.
At times like these, I feel relieved that honoring my ancestors is part of my daily life. The death of a loved one is difficult enough. Going through it without the stability of a spiritual practice that encompasses death, grief, and memory is even more difficult.
I’d like to share with you some of the ways that I have been honoring him as a recently deceased ancestor. I hope that anyone else who is grieving a loved one right now will find some comfort and support in hearing about my process. Read More
You may be shocked to learn that I—the weird lady on the internet who just wrote a book about worshipping dead people—actually have a very normal day job. But it’s true. I have a normal commute to a normal office where I work a normal 9-to-5 with some very normal people. Here are some of my favorite magical strategies for not just surviving, but thriving at a normal job. Read More
Folk healers in my ancestral homeland are often called benedetti, meaning blessed ones. It comes from the Latin word benedicere, “to speak well of” or “to praise”; in other words, “to worship”. Their tools are simple: prayer, olive oil, salt, holy cards. Lots of sacramentals, like the candles that Catholics around the world will bring to be blessed at Candlemas services today. Candlemas candles are lit in times of crisis such as during storms or serious illness, and at the bedside of the dying. Read More
I recently joined my friend Devin Person, professional subway wizard, on This Podcast is a Ritual to talk about ancestor veneration. During our chat (which you can listen to here or on iTunes), Devin asked me how listeners new to the idea could start honoring their ancestors. I shared a quick ritual for getting started. But talking about that first step got me thinking…
What is the second step in honoring your ancestors? Read More
DNA testing has become something of a trend over the past several years, so I’m not surprised that it comes up so often in discussions about ancestor veneration. But how accurate and useful are DNA tests, anyway? Can they contribute to a spiritual practice like ancestor veneration? Read More