Archive for Norwescon

Norwescon and themes of three

Posted in Animals, Art, lwas, Movies and Media, Sekhmet, Vodou with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 9, 2012 by cheshirecatman

Art table at Norwescon 35

Last weekend I was at Norwescon participating in the art show and attending panels. It was exhausting and a lot of fun. Among the highlights for me was the panel on race and popular media, moderated by Sheye Anne Blaze and featuring author Dennis R. Upkins. Mr. Upkins slipped in a barb about the film “Avatar” before I even had a chance to mention anything, and it was so gratifying to hear from others who share my views on the film (which you can read here). I don’t hate the movie or believe that James Cameron had any bad intentions, but when I watch it there are always things that bother me about the film even though I love the lush visuals.

I made three sales this year, and two of the pieces went to auction (a first for me!). I can’t help but think the goddess Sekhmet had her hand in this, possibly due in part to some candle work recently performed with her. One of the pieces that sold was a standing figure of the goddess herself, and the other two were domestic black cats. Granted, I had no shortage of cats on my table, but still, only the feline pieces sold.

Two years ago, I sold three Vodou-related pieces at the same convention, after requesting the favor of the lwa.

True to my promise to her, a portion of profits will be set aside for donation to big cat causes, to be donated periodically to a responsible non-profit organization (there are several I like, including the Snow Leopard Trust and the White Lion Protection Trust). The goddess likes us to create and display her image, so I have another piece started for her to display at my next show.

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Norwescon, card readings and tax refunds

Posted in Animal communication, Divination, Erzulie, La Sirene, Legba, lwas, Psychic, Religion, Vodou with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 25, 2011 by cheshirecatman

Last month the person who is going to be a new mentor to me gave me a one-card oracle reading, which correlated quite accurately to where I am in life at the moment. Here is the reading in its entirety:

For every new ambition, relationship, and experience you seek at this time, there’s a commitment in place that must be eliminated to make way for the new. Current routines, habits and even types of free time must be sacrificed so that you can open up to new energies. Your Master Teacher is present, urging you to identify what must go. Be honest in your assessment, and be realistic and thoughtful in setting your goals so that you don’t overreach and fail. To reach for something greater, you must first let go of what’s in your hand.

I’ve been feeling this way for quite some time—the urge to throw stuff away and to prioritize my  interests, maybe even drop some of them altogether. This is difficult sometimes, as I have so many interests: art, writing, Vodou, the occult, some computer games, movies, reading, musical instruments (wanting to learn flute and drums), animal health, etc. In the past I’ve pushed myself in too many directions at once, which resulted in a little progress in several areas but great strides in none. As my commitment to Vodou and my artwork deepens, I am finding that my time management skills are in need of immediate improvement.

I spent last weekend at Norwescon, one of the larger science fiction and fantasy conventions in the Seattle area. I caught up with some friends, attended several panels and film previews, and participated in the art show (even selling one piece, which made me happy). On Sunday there was a paranormal fair in one of the ballrooms near the art show, which I’d been looking forward to all weekend. I arrived there just after they opened at 10 a.m.

The first thing I did was take a telepathy-based ESP test from Philemon of Elemental Entertainment. I scored rather average. Part of the reason for this might be because I suffer from performance anxiety, and have trouble focusing when others are watching me. I have materials at home for this type of testing and really should retest myself soon and see if I fare any better.

Next, I stopped at the table belonging to the Northwest Museum of Legends and Lore to try out their spirit box, which is a small wooden box with a voice chip inside that can produce phonetic sounds. You ask it a question and then plug it in and listen. I decided to address my question to Puck which, in retrospect, might have not been the best idea. Initially I did not think it would be a problem because I talk to Puck through Tracy Ann with little difficulty; however, Tracy Ann is not a voice chip. Her brain can convert Puck’s message into language which humans can understand. After I asked my question, I placed my  hand on top of the box and plugged it in. What I heard was a long jumble of syllables which reminded me of  people speaking in tongues. I could not pick out many recognizable words among those sounds which contained many ‘y’ and ‘l’ combinations. Here is a list of words I may have heard, but none of them were clear: fuel, Uriel, lair, young, lua [lwa?], aerie or airy, a hair, omni, Jeremiah, admiral, lord, le ear. The experience was rather disappointing, but I’d be willing to give the box another try if the opportunity should arise again.

I had initially planned on staying at the Northwest Museum table and getting a tarot reading there, but while I was using the spirit box I noticed that there was a $5.00 fee for the reading. Now, normally I would consider that a very good bargain for a tarot reading, but I’d already spent most of my money at the convention and, seeing as how I was not in desperate need of a reading, I really did not want to spend anything there. (This would turn out to be one of those “coincidental” circumstances that pushes me in a direction that I am meant to go.) So I got up and wandered over to the table of the Seattle Metaphysical Library. A young man with a tattoo sleeve was sitting quietly there with a tarot deck. He introduced himself as Jaxob and said he was giving free readings. He told me to shuffle the deck while thinking about my question (I did not speak it out loud), and then to set the cards down and cut the deck in half. I decided to ask the spirits to show me what I needed to know about my spiritual path.

Jaxob picked up the two stacks, then laid out three cards: the Page of Swords, the Queen of Swords and the Ten of Swords. He asked me what was the first thing that I noticed about the cards, and I replied that there were a lot of swords. He explained that this represented someone who exists on the mental/intellectual level (which would be me–not by choice, but a strong intellectual/skeptical side appears to be part of my makeup). The Ten of Swords (the image is of a man lying face-down with ten swords sticking out of his back) represented the end of this type of existence, and the beginning of one more based on emotion. He interpreted the Queen of Swords to indicate that I should work with a female deity towards this goal.

He asked me if there was a particular female deity I worked with, and I told him that I used to be Wiccan but now practiced Vodou, and we had a brief conversation about Vodou. As it turned out, he is a friend of Mambo C’s. Small world.

He thought the Queen of Swords might represent Erzulie Dantor, but was not sure. I am thinking perhaps I should be paying more attention to La Sirene–partly due to the association of water with emotions, and also because of the watery sensation that Angel felt in my third eye when she aligned my chakras. Plus La Sirene has been with me on this journey all along, and I feel I’ve not been giving several of the lwa as much attention as they deserve lately, with the exception of Legba. But I will keep Dantor in mind, and see if anything else occurs that suggests I should be serving her as well.

Note: Any interpretation errors are likely mine and not Jaxob’s…I did not take thorough notes during the reading and am writing this largely by memory.

What struck me about Jaxob’s reading was that it reminded me of last month’s oracle reading…both with themes of change, spiritual growth and giving up old things to make way for the new.

In conclusion, I’ll mention that I got my tax refund today. For quite some time I’ve been planning to buy a Playstation. I enjoy computer gaming, but have never spent much time with console games. Plus it could double as a blu-ray player, which I’ve been wanting to buy. However, in light of this second card reading echoing the first one, I am thinking of passing on that idea and just settling for a simple blu-ray player. Besides saving money, I will be sparing myself of yet another time-consuming, income-chomping hobby that will take me away from my artwork and spiritual studies.

Art show Vodou

Posted in Art, Legba, lwas, Religion, Vodou with tags , , , , , , on April 10, 2010 by cheshirecatman

Last weekend Norwescon was held at the Doubletree Hotel in SeaTac, Washington. Norwescon is one of the largest regional science fiction and fantasy conventions in the United States. I’ve been showing there regularly since 2005. And I never sell a thing.

Two years ago I came close. Someone bid on one of my smaller sculptures. I got all excited, only to arrive at the art show on the last day to find that the would-be buyer never paid for the piece nor picked it up. So my record of zero sales at this particular convention remained intact.

Last weekend marked the 6th year I’ve been showing up at this con. And this year proved to be different. The difference is that I walk with the lwa now.

Before the convention, I stood before my shrines and asked Papa Legba and my lwa to help me do better at art shows. On Thursday I traveled from Seattle to SeaTac and set up my table and attended the artist reception. And then I went home.

The following day, while I was at work, a friend who was attending the con called me and said I had bids on three of my pieces. Not one, three. Surprise, disbelief, then excitement passed through me in rapid waves.

On Sunday I arrived early at the convention and decided to walk through the art show before hitting the dealer’s room and some  convention events. I had to see the bid tags for myself to make sure they were real. Sure enough, they were.

A few hours later, just before the art show closed, I saw that two of the buyers had picked up their artwork. One of the three pieces was still on the table waiting for pickup. And a fourth piece was gone—purchased via direct sale!

I was flabbergasted. And here’s the kicker: three of the four sold pieces had Vodou themes. (In the photo above, note the three framed reliefs.)

I never had stuff like this happen to me when I was Wiccan. Of course, part of the reason for that could be that I was not particularly good at spellwork. Which apparently does not matter in Vodou. A polite request was enough.

And of course keeping one’s promises. Sunday evening, after a dinner celebration at a wonderful Thai restaurant, I went to the grocery store and purchased various offering foods for my lwa.

I reallly do love them.