Saturday 2 October 2010

What it means....

to be Black, Jamaican & pagan.

So today is another broom tale for you.If you didn't know before now: I'm Black, and Jamaican. And no I don't practice Voodoo, Hoodoo, Santeria, Candomble' or any of the Yoruba traditions. (since we have that outta the way lets move on) I have been on the Pagan path for over 18 years (this Halloween), I have traveled through many different paths before I came to settle on the one which I now walk, I'm eclectic with a strong leaning towards Druidism and Hedge witchery( im studying midwifery).  Unique I know, i have to explain how i came to that path every time I go to a pagan event. I didn't choose it it choose me. 

My family like most Jamaicans have a smattering of everything in there, my paternal Grandfather is from Scotland, and the rest of the family are descendants from African and the Arawak Indians that were native to the island.  From I was a child the Celtic Gods (really all the Gods ) fascinated me and I made my decisions to research as much as possible, one Goddess in particular kept coming up, Morrigan, she has been in my life for many years and only recently decided to share by letting in Anubis from the Kemetic (otherwise known as Egyptian) pantheon.

Did i mention she's mean?? She's not an easy Goddess to serve and she doesn't share easily, she's dominant, demanding, nosey, in your face and just generally the Queen (i mean it is her name), and she has many personalities(three to be infact Nemain, Macha, Badb) She rules with an iron fist, she doesn't ask she tells you and when you don't listen she'll sit back watch what happens then gladly laugh when you come crawling back with tears in your eyes cause you should have listened. Did I mention I love her??

image courtesy of
She has never failed me, she has given me strength and helped me to grow as a woman in my own power. Serving her has never been easy but it has always felt right.  When i mentioned that i was feeling lonely lately its because I haven't been working with her lately, i had allowed myself to drift along in life and not really attempt to work with her or anyone in fact (sad I know). Since writing that and working on this blog I have begun the journey back to her and to my faith and unquestionable unshakable belief I once had.  Faith isn't about not having questions its abut believing despite them, and I have finally learned to just let go and let Goddess (hard so so hard to do).

I wanted to share how my life is different as a pagan, many of you know what it is but do you know how annoying it is to have others assume that because you are Jamaican, black, with dreads you
a) smoke weed
b) practice a Yoruba tradition
c) are clueless about the other traditions

The very fact that i get annoyed about it can tell you none of the three are correct. Its hard to tell Jamaicans that I'm pagan because they instantly associate it with Voodoo and have a negative image with it.

So its very lonely to be a Jamaican pagan, those that are pagan are few and far between in my neck of the woods, I am also one of the few black women in my neck of the woods.  I try to fit in and discuss with others but sometimes I'm alone with my opinions and I certainly feel it.
Sometimes i have to go to New York to even get some company. There are so many others who fit in with and i love it.  Not that there is anything wrong with CT just not enough pagans to hang out with and even fewer black women in which to talk to.  So i have had to turn to the internet to get that company and to learn because there is actually only one store in our neighborhood, if they don't have it NY it is. (this isn't a boohoo story i swear)

My faith is very important to me,but sometimes it can be very isolating. Even among the pagan community.  Even though it can be isolating, it also has led to me making some amazing friendships, the few i have made are too amazing, and they help to build up my faith in the community and what it can be.  They have become mentors, teachers and really good friends.  Sometimes the Goddess leads us down a path that may at first seem lonely but can somewhere along the way leads to a beautiful life filled with great friends, a fulfilling career and an amazing spiritual path.

Becoming Pagan was easy because I am from the Caribbean. In the Caribbean many children are brought up on the tales of Brotha Anansi who teaches morals through his many little trials and tribulations but these stories also explain why things are the way they are in the world (ex: why cats and dogs don't get along). Hearing these stories which are derivatives of the tales of the Yoruban Spider God Anansi aides in opening our minds and hearts to the presence of the other Gods. (they are also greatly funny and family building)  There is also a form of ancestral worship in the revering of National Heroes that takes place, many of our superstitions and traditions also have a pagan slant to them.  There is also the fact that Jamaicans take ghost (or duppies) for fact, that they exist as in the different tales which are shared by everyday people, as well as the belief in the strength of magic although many will not admit to it.
So even though i can't share with many Jamaicans that I am pagan, there are many things i can do to be out of the closet without being out of the closet and no one will think its weird
I am a Proud Jamaican and Pagan

How does your faith isolate or include you in the pagan community? How does it feel to be a follower of your Patron?  How does it help you in everyday life?


  1. Like you I have very mixed ancestry. My mothers side of the family is German/Norwegian and my Fathers side are Hungarian Jews, so I kind of am misunderstood on both sides. Isn't it interesting how our patron deities choose us, regardless of our race, color or ancestry. I have no interest really in anything of traditional Judaism and am slightly drawn to Kabbalah. I've had many patrons throughout my life as I believe they move with our needs. Right now the Hindu Elephant God, Ganesha is working with me, along with the Egyptian Cat Goddess, Bast...Morrighan is powerful!She reminds me of Kali..And Anubis is has such magickal energy. Thank you for sharing your story, I'm so glad I found your blog...Merry Meet.

  2. thanks so much!! Yes isn't it amazing!! I love the Goddess, she is got some strong opinions on how things go and boy she really means it when she says follow me or its up to you what happens
    thanks for sharing also


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