Have you ever been interested in the witchy side of spirituality? You’re in luck! We are talking all about the mystical aspects of our spirituality that we don’t usually tap into during traditional religious services. How do we go about discovering our inner voice? And when we’ve uncovered it, how do we honor it?
In this episode we explore different definitions of mysticism, distinguish it from the term “New Age, ” and talk about how we can all be mystics. We look into ancient sacred texts that didn’t make it into the Christian canon, share our thoughts on the gaining popularity of witchcraft, and try to connect the dots between mysticism, sexism, and racism.
If you’re looking at a few mystics to learn about and follow, check out Evelyn Underhill, Mirabai Starr, and Richard Rohr.
What We’re Reading and Listening To
Katey is reading Mary Magdalene Revealed by Megan Watterson. Did you know there was a Gospel of Mary? You won’t find it in your Bible. It was one of the many early Christian sacred texts ordered to be destroyed in the 4th century when Christianity became the official religion of Rome and the canon was determined. Some amazing scribes buried three copies, and they were discovered in 1896.
This book reignited Katey’s love of Mary Magdalene and brings assurance that we can reconcile mystical practices with our Christian faith if we so desire. Christ is and was so much more expansive than we’ve been taught to believe by the institutional church. Any sense of separation or division is an illusion. Our healing begins when we start to recognize that we are one with God and with one another.
Ashley’s pick is The Witches are Coming by Lindy West. If you haven’t already read her memoir, Shrill, about what it’s like to be a fat female journalist who writes about feminism and pop culture on the internet, check that out too! West is also famous for being viscously trolled online and actually meeting and confronting one of her worst trolls (This American Life did an episode about it.)
In The Witches are Coming, West tackles topics like reproductive rights, climate change, #MeToo, toxic masculinity and misogyny. In Ashley’s favorite chapter, she goes back and watches all the Adam Sandler movies that were popular when we were in high school and realizes that these movies were a huge part of the culture at that time teaching boys to be men. It’s hilarious, and also really sobering.
Kindred of the Moment: Dianca London
We learned about Dianca London, who was recently interviewed on an episode of The Witch Wave podcast with Pam Grossman. London writes about witchcraft, literature, and black occulture. In this interview she talks a lot about being a black girl in predominantly white spaces growing up, how she sees poetry as magic and incantation, and how there are many witches of color throughout history we don’t know about! And in particular, she talks about how Christianity and witchcraft shape her spiritual life. They don’t have to be contradictory—and we are here for it. Listen to the interview here, and check Dianca on Twitter and Instagram.
Stuff We Mentioned
- The Witches of Baltimore
- A New New Testament
- “Signs You Might Be a Mystic“
- “Witches Are Having Their Hour“
- The Mystic’s Prayer
Next Time on Kindreds
Next time we’re going to talk about something that was suggested in our listener request episode and that’s the tough topic of reproductive loss. We’ll be talking about the full range of losses that a person can experience and how to support yourself or someone else going through it.