Personal Responsibility – Circles 2-5

Ok. I am absolutely exhausted. So. I’m going to list the following circles surrounding most people, but for those who read, you can think of ways you are responsible for these groups, and how you can improve them.

EDIT: I feel much better today, and will be finally going through the other circles of personal responsibility.

Second Circle – Family

This includes your blood family, your significant other/partner, and people who are much more than friends, but aren’t really related to you by blood. This group for me is incredibly small. It includes: Mother, Father, Sister, Brother, Sister-in-law, Nephew, Cousin and his family, Friend 1, Friend 2, and Husband (not necessarily in that order).  To be fair, this list is comprised of everyone I truly care about or have a relationship deeper than mere “Acquaintance”. As Kathleen Kelly says in You’ve Got Mail “I lead a small life, well, a valuable, but small.” I like my small world. My bubble.

The main problem I have with this circle is generally my sister. She’s extroverted, rather pushy, and *loud*. Don’t get me wrong, I love her to pieces, but she can be a lot to handle sometimes. I am also cripplingly introverted. My sister has the strange ability to just sap all the energy and patience from me in a short one hour period. She doesn’t mean to, and it’s never intentional, but it happens. She just often asks for more than I can readily give, and I find it really difficult to deny her because she’s super great at guilt.

Third Circle – The Coven (Of which I’ve never had)

I have never had a Coven, so I have no experience in this circle, nor can do I have an opinion. I honestly don’t know if I’d want to join one.

Fourth Circle – The Community

Maybe it’s because I married a socialist, but I do believe we have a responsibility to our communities. Helping those in need doesn’t need to be exclusively Christian. Everyone deserves to have the basics of life, and I would *love* to see America base itself more off of Sweden’s or Iceland’s model.

That being said, I know I should be doing more. I’ve thought about volunteering somewhere, but I am seriously unable to talk to people without an IV of Ativan, it would be almost impossible. And before anyone says anything, I *am* in therapy, and getting help. I am also getting tested for Cushings (tumor on the pituitary/adrenal glands) which could be affecting anxiety, paranoia, and depression levels. Woots. So I am dealing with it. But being out in public is currently a daunting task for me. So instead, I do something at home that allows me to help without causing panic attacks. I crochet and knit scarves, mittens, hats, and blankets for those who need them. I give what I make each year to my brother’s minister, and she makes sure they go where they’re needed. It’s not much, but I’m trying, and maybe, one day, I can do more.

Fifth Circle – The Planet

I am truly not doing as much for the planet as I would wish. I do all the small basic things (turn off lights while not in a room, don’t waste water or energy, use my car less, etc), but I’m going to try and find ways to do better about this.

You can find the First Circle post here.

– Alfrún

Upcoming homework!

At the end of the first section in Dedicant, Calafia has reading chapters 1-9 of The Spiral Dance by Starhawk as the homework. So it’s ordered. I have a few reservations. I actually reconsidered buying it for a bit. Some of the reviews were troubling, but in the end I decided I’d use the mental exercises, while ignoring the history and whatnot. I usually ignore the history chapters anyway. I’ve set no real stock in any of them, as they tend to be incredibly prejudiced against Christians and whatnot. So we’ll see if this book was worth it.

– Alfrún

Personal Responsibility – First Circle: Self

Find joy in everything you choose to do. Every job, relationship, home…

It’s your responsibility to love it or change it.

– Chuck Palahniuk

Dedicant talks about circles surrounding you and the impact you have on these circles.

First Circle – The Self

Self-love, self- esteem, and self-knowledge are all things that are incredibly important, but the more importantly is self-honesty. There is only ever one person you should ever listen to indefinitely: YOU! You are your most important asset. But knowing, and following what’s in your best interest can be incredibly tough. Especially for those who have a “martyred” personality, or are givers, and find it difficult to take as well as give. I do this frequently, but in the end crashing after a while trying to do and be everything for everyone. It’s not healthy behavior. Instead, pay attention to what your mind, intuition, and body are telling you.  Take care of yourself.

Abundance: I am at heart a rather materialistic person. I like my belongings to be new, sparkly, and aesthetic as well as functional. I like expensive crystals and gems, and would have a jewelry collection to amaze the mind if I could. Not to mention my collection of books as it grows every year by leaps and bounds… But I’m not particularly proud of the greed that sometimes flares up with that side of me. So I tend to squash it. HOWEVER! That’s not to mean you can’t strive to be comfortable. There’s no need to live like a spartan monk. So long as it harms no one, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to have more. Having financial security reduces stress in *huge* ways. I’ve recently lost my job, and my spouse and I were living on a single income that did not fulfill our needs (he has since gotten a new one with a hefty pay raise so we’re doing much better). We had many long nights trying to figure out where money was coming from for this and that. Without the help of my parents, we would have been possible danger of losing our home. Wanting, and having, money/abundance is healthy, so long as that wanting is not destructive to you or others.

Health: “Do what ye will, an it harm none.” The Rede also applies to *yourself* in case anyone had forgotten. Mwahahaha! No lectures on diet or exercise. I promise. We’ve all heard them far too often, but you do need to keep yourself healthy. You can read more about what Calafia says in her book if you want.

So, listen to yourself, treat yourself, and try not to be too hard on yourself.

– Alfrún

My Beginnings and My Transcript

I am beginning my year and day studies in a few days time (November 1st, after Samhain, the new year, seems as good a time as any). I’ve technically started a little early with this exercise, but as I’ve just gotten the new book (Dedicant: A Witch’s Circle of Fire by Thuri Calafia), I was excited to start. I started tonight by producing my Transcript. You can access it from the sidebar menu. I’m not entirely certain what she means by some of what she asks for, but maybe I’ll figure it out along the way. Feel free to pop over there any time you want. It’ll be updated as I go along.

Tomorrow I will be creating colored flashcards. Here’s how and what they are for:

You will need 30 index cards (or cards similar to this)

Markers, paint, or crayons of the primary and secondary colors (red, yellow, blue, orange, green, purple)

Draw a circle and color it in for each card. Five cards of each color, so you’ll end up with 30 cards total. Then, with the colors facing away from you, or downwards, guess which color each card is. I’ll be keeping track of my “scores”. I’m interested to see if I get better.

This exercise helps to develop intuition and psychic muscles. Go for it, and good luck!

– Alfrún