Multicultural Magic: Meet ChristoPagan Kim

What is your name? Do you go by any aliases?

My name is Kimberly McAfee, and I go by “ChristoPagan Kim” on my blog, Youtube, Twitter and Instagram.

What is your cultural background?

Do you have an hour?  Just kidding!  But I do have a unique and varied ethnic background.  I recently did one of the DNA tests to determine ancestry, and I was really taken aback by the results.  My largest ethnic groups are East Asian – no big surprise there – and Scandinavian – which was a super mega surprise.  I also have ancestry from various European countries, Caucasus and the Pacific Islands.  

Where are you currently living?

I live in Georgia, the Peach State!  

What type of divination and/ or magic that you practice?

As far as divination, I use Tarot and have been beginning to work more with Astrology. As far as magic, I am most inspired by Appalachian Folk Magic, Southern Rootwork and Muism (Korean Shamanism), which is reflective of my ethnic/cultural background and experiences.  My magical workings are definitely influenced by these disciplines, though I also work with my intuition extensively.   

When did you first starting learning your divination and/or magic? 

Interestingly enough, I was practicing magical principles prior to knowing they had a name; I thought they were just quirky little things that I did.  For example, I have practiced sympathetic magic and reiki-type energy work for years.  It was only within the past few years that I learned my “quirky things” actually had names and were legitimate spiritual practices.  As I started learning more, I felt like I had found my home in the realization that I am a Witch.  

What obstacles did you face when you started practicing your divination and/or magic? How did it affect your cultural beliefs?

A lot of my obstacles were similar to those of others on the Witchy/Pagan path, e.g. coming to terms with my beliefs, telling others, etc.  

A particular obstacle for me is finding others who are interested in Muism.  It’s great to read books, websites, etc. on these subjects, but it’s an entirely different thing to have a friend you can “talk shop” with.  

How do you bridge your cultural beliefs with the usage of divination and/or magic?

In some ways, I believe my cultural diversity gives me an advantage being on a blended path.  I grew up living with two distinct cultures – American and Korean – which created a unique hybrid all its own.  I believe that experience and living abroad (I lived in Germany for several years when I was younger) has given me the ability to bridge the gap between differing ideas with ease.  It also has given me the ability to look at things at the macro level, and be more cognizant of what we share as human beings versus what separates us – which in actuality, is relatively minor.  Divination and magic exist across cultural boundaries, though there may be differences on how they’re executed, how accepted they are, etc.  

Do you have a website? 

I sure do!  I have a blog titled, “Christopagan Kim: Discussing ChristoPaganism, Spirituality & more!” and I have a Zazzle store where I sell my art.  I also do Youtube videos, also under the name “ChristoPagan Kim” on my personal channel, in addition to a collaborative channel called “The Biophilic Alternative.”  Feel free to stop by and introduce yourself!

What are your social media handles (I.e.Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc)?

My blog: https://christopagankim.wordpress.com/ 
Youtube: 
ChristoPagan Kim: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCY2FxUDiyanCPGN_Ib68Ysw 
The Biophilic Alternative: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKdKy7u8mYhNG3RinxTzooA 
Zazzle Store: http://www.zazzle.com/art_by_kim 
Facebook: Coven of the Blue Rose (https://www.facebook.com/CovenoftheBlueRose
Twitter: @christopagankim (https://twitter.com/christopagankim
Instagram: @christopagankim (https://www.instagram.com/christopagankim/

Multicultural Magic: Meet Courtney Alexander

What is your name? Do you go by any aliases?
My name is Courtney Alexander. One of my family pet names is "Tupieta" and I used to use that handle a lot back in the day. It's a combo of my pet name "Toopy" and "Courtnietta" my mom put together.  My name has been often remixed into Kurtney, Cawtney, Coco, etc. Just don't call me "court-court" *shudders*.

What is your cultural background?
Southern bred Black-American. Most of my family resides in south Florida and southern Georgia.

Where are you currently living?
Tampa, FL. My favorite city in Florida.

What type of divination and/or magic do you practice?
I'm still learning a lot about different divination techniques. I've been using Tarot for about 2 years now. I also loveeee working with crystals. I'm a Virgo so that lovely earth energy really feels good to me. Astrology appeals to my more analytical and systematic side. I also have been refining my candle-burning rituals and building altars. It really helps me focus my energy and intentions. I've noticed quicker transformation and a lot more trust in myself as I've built my practice. Singing is another powerful tool for me since it has been altering my state of mind much more quickly than reciting mantras have done. 

I'm a creator through and through. Tapping into it through building and making m altar items has helped me realize my own magic and power. Studying West African art and culture has helped me get back in touch with my roots. I'm really getting more into Hoodoo in general. I like the freedom within it. I think right now my spiritual practice is not set in one spiritual system or tradition. I work with what resonates with my journey and what honors who I am.

When did you first starting learning divination and/or magic?
Normally I'd say that it's been the past few years but thinking back, even as a young girl I practiced. I was in a heavy Christian mind-set but it is all the same really. I was super-saved and in the church. A friend and I would get together and practice reading each other minds. Honing our "prophetic" abilities. I also would pray for my cousins, speak in tongues, see them fall out. It was the first time in my life I felt my own magic and power. I dreamed a lot and had so many experiences back then. As life happened I distanced myself further from church and wandered a long time. But it was what needed to happen to break down the structures that would seek to limit the extent of my spiritual power.

Now everything I did then is still applying now. I not only believe in the source beyond, but the one within. I still receive diving guidance but I'm just more aware of who and what it is. I still have to learn to believe in the power of my thoughts and intentions directed towards the love and healing of myself and others. Now I do it from a boundless space and it feels wonderful. 

What obstacles did you face when you started practicing your divination and/or magic? How did it affect your cultural beliefs?
As a young girl I spent a lot of time with my Aunt who practices in her personal life. I remember seeing the books and tools around her home. I used to love being there. In my late teens, I left the last church I called home. My pastor at the time told me she could no longer preach what she didn't believe. Her ideals were changing and she honored it by not staying in her position. I was truly inspired by her courage because so many would choose to succumb to the power and pressure. It also helped me feel okay with questioning and pulling away. If my own spiritual leader did than why couldn't I? 

I began to open myself up in my early 20s. A friend of mine introduced me to a clairvoyant who I began going to for guidance, and still do. She has such a beautiful and fearless spirit and it touched me. She helped me feel it was safe to expand. That I didn't have to fear condemnation. I was still reluctant to go too deep. But then as I studied art my world opened even more. Art taught me so much about the development of humanity. Which helped me to realize how much we changed and evolved. Learning more about West African art helped me to decontextualize my own fears of connection with my ancestors. I don't ascribe to any particular tradition but I've become less afraid of channeling the energies of different deities. Especially now that I see them come forth of their own accord through my art.

As I reached a particular point in my journey I sort of had to come out to people about my changing beliefs. Just this summer I finally mentioned how I felt to my mother and sister, who I'm really close too. Debuting Dust II Onyx Tarotwas my "outing" to everyone else. I know they do not fully understand my transition but thankfully they still support my journey and pursuit of wholeness without judgment. I'm truly blessed.

How do you bridge your cultural beliefs with the usage of divination and/or magic?
As mentioned before, Christianity is still a part of my foundation. I don't reference Jesus or God in the traditional sense. But I still like working with angels, and I still reference the Holy Spirit as a divine guiding energy in my work. I keep a Bible on my altar as well. There are particular church songs I still sing at times because the message in it matters to me and may be relevant to what I need to feel.

Do you have a website?
Yes! I'm creating my own tarot deck called Dust II Onyx - A Melanated Tarot. It has been such a fulfilling and beautiful project. I have grown so much spiritually and feel a much deeper connection with myself and my spirit family. I'm also proud of how far I have come as an artist. To learn more visit www.dust2onyx.com. Visit kck.st/2cIbJ1F to preorder the deck on Kickstarter! 

What are your social media handles (I.e.Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc)?
Stay up to date on Dust II Onyx via:
Facebook.com/dust2onyx
Instagram.com/dust2onyxtarot
Twitter.com/dust2onyxtarot

I'm also easy to find on Facebook for those who want to personally connect.

Sh!t My Tarot Cards Say: Major Arcana Edition

What if the cards *really* want to talk back to you?

I sometimes have deep and meaningful conversations with my tarot deck that I carry with me every where. A lot of times, I've often received weird looks from strangers.  Then I turn around and say "Wanna join in the conversation?"  I know...I'm a horrible witch. 

The purpose of this article is to help others understand the general meanings of the cards in a humorous manner.  Actually, more like sharing my own thoughts when my cards speak to me. But you get the picture...no pun intended.

For this edition, I'll be starting off the Major Arcana which is comprised from the Fool to the World. Believe me, there are no major secrets when it came to the big shots.  

THE FOOL: It's such a lovely day to take in the scenery! Perhaps I should go bungee jumping? Or should I wait for my dog to finish peeing?

THE MAGICIAN: For $9.99, you'll get all of this in the table plus a chance to see me perform my greatest trick - making your wallet disappear! 

THE HIGH PRIESTESS: Oh, you think I'm hiding something? Nah bruh, it's all in your head...or is there?

THE EMPRESS: *singing* I'm every woman, It's all in meeeeeee, anything you want done baby, I can do it naturally.

THE EMPEROR: My wife needs to stop singing. Also, why do I feel constipated? Ugh, why can't you behave!

THE HIEROPHANT:   Now child, remember I told you - the peanut butter always gets mixed with the jelly. Please don't tell me otherwise, or that your friend says that it tastes better without jelly. That's preposterous!

THE LOVERS: *unfortunately, Adam and Eve are having an argument because they can't figure out why they're naked in the first place*

THE CHARIOT: Good grief, should I go for a chicken sandwich or a hamburger? WHY IS IT SO DAMN HARD?

STRENGTH: That's a good kitty. Mama needs to make sure that you don't do anything rash! Here, feed from my hand. And people say that you're such a mean kitty...nonsense! You just needed some love, dear. 

THE HERMIT: I better stay away from society for a bit.  Also, my back hurts and I wonder if this lamp will help burn the population below me. 

WHEEL OF FORTUNE: You spin me right round, baby.

JUSTICE: THOU SHALL NOT PASS! Also, you need to pay your parking ticket.  

THE HANGED MAN: If everything below is above, then what if the above is below? Also, why does my head hurt?

DEATH: Nothing to see here. Just doing my job. Don't mind the trail of bodies behind my horse. Don't fear the reaper, folks.

TEMPERANCE: I just need to keep fixing the ratio between wine and water. How the hell did Jesus do this?

THE DEVIL: There's a reason why I invented YOLO in the first place....hehe

THE TOWER: *someone decided to place a cherry bomb in the toilet and everyone ended up going to a different floor to use the bathroom*

THE STAR: If I stare at the water long enough, I'll morph into Mulan.  *10 seconds later, starts to sing* WHEN WILL MY REFLECTION SHOW WHO I AM INSIDE??

THE MOON: You can keep barking at me boys, but you ain't getting my attention. This sista is gonna need her beauty sleep. Also FYI, I'm taken. Oh, and I'm on my period.

THE SUN: *in a high pitched voice* EVERYTHING IS AWESOME! EVERYTHING IS COOL WHEN YOU'RE PART OF A TEAM!!!!

JUDGEMENT: When I repent, you repent, just like this. Now don't make me smack you with my horn! 

THE WORLD: Hooray! I FINALLY beat that long ass game and that stupid boss. Now I can go....oh wait, you're asking me to replay the game again for another million dollars? Sure, why the hell not?

Hope you guys enjoy this fun piece! Let me know in the comments on what you think the Major Arcana cards are saying to you. And if you wanna connect with the cards in a deeper level with me, let's make some magic

Blessings,
Diana

Tarot Astrology Scopes for March 2017

Want to know what's in store for you for this month? Grab your favourite beverage and let's have a closer look. All of the info written below are not limited only to the Sun signs. It can also be applied to the Moon and Rising signs as well 😊

Deck that was used in this reading is from The Crystal Visions Tarot Deck (published by U.S. Games Systems).

Aries: Knight of Pentacles

Though the energy is fiery, you're remaining as cautious as ever when making decisions.  Don't feel alarmed if you're experiencing more heat than usual. It's right up your alley. 

Taurus: Strength (Reversed)

You're normally easy going, but this month you may be feeling some anxiety over some confidence issues. Rest assured - you'll get back to your grounded nature.

Gemini: The World 

A sense of completion is in the air. Whether if you made an advancement or starting from square one, you can bet that you'll be up for the challenge. 

Cancer: Four of Pentacles (Reversed)

You may be feeling that you have no reason to trust anyone at the moment. A sense of paranoia may creep up. Try to spend a few moments in meditation and recite affirmations. 

Leo: The Lovers (Reversed)

Jealousy and possessiveness may come up if you're feeling that someone is taking away your spotlight. Rather than seething, try to open up a line of communication without biting someone's head off. 

Virgo: Ten of Wands

Your attention to detail might be overworking you. Rather than fighting uphill, think on what needs to be delegated. Plenty of self care and learning to say "no" will help ease the stress. 

Libra: Eight of Cups (Reversed)

You may be feeling less inclined to release a past grudge. However hard things may be, it is a good moment to reflect on what's holding you back in moving forward.

Scorpio: Six of Cups (Reversed)

There are some unresolved issues that may be harbouring your current relationships with others. It could be from a traumatic event that may have shaped your viewpoint. Allow yourself to look within and take note. 

Sagittarius: Ace of Pentacles (Reversed)

You're quick to pull the trigger, but you find that your impatience on manifesting your goals takes a lot more work than just thinking it out loud. Write your list and cultivate the seeds without feeling pressured.

Capricorn: Ten of Swords (Reversed)

Feelings of apathy may reside as your work starts to increase. Remember - health is wealth. Try to set some time for yourself before burning yourself even further.

Aquarius: Ace of Swords (Reversed)

You may be feeling like you're trying too hard in a situation. Focus on the overall picture, instead of jumping into conclusions. You'll be surprised how much hidden messages it can bring to the table.

Pisces: Eight of Wands

You're going places! The rate of manifesting your dreams is at an all time high. Focus on your intuition and take charge on where you want to go from here. 

Monthly Tarot & Oracle Reading for March 2017

Hola everyone! With the recent changes happening in my personal life, I decided to switch the format from weekly to monthly forecasts. In doing so, I decided to expand the reading a little further using three tarot cards and three oracle cards. The oracle cards will provide a lesson behind the portion of the month.
I'm using the Golden Universal Tarot and Gypsy Oracle Cards (both by Lo Scarabeo).

Ready? Let us dive right into the reading. 

The beginning portion of the month, we will see a sense of maturity of our emotions thanks to the Queen of Cups.  Our instincts will allow us to nurture and provide self care to those around us. Since we're under the season of Pisces, Venus will be retrograding on 3/4 so pay special attention on how you're handling your relationships.  One of the biggest takes from the retrograde is that it'll expose the cheaters in your life.   If you're suspecting that someone may not be faithful, don't be afraid to expose them for what they're worth. Even if you made a mistake on being too trusting with their words in the beginning, this retrograde season will provide an opportunity to showcase their sins (in a classy way of course).   If you're looking for love, now would be a good time to have an honest conversation with yourself as to what you're looking for in a potential relationship. If you're currently involved in a relationship, you may see a rise in affection from either you or your partner.

esta will go direct on 3/7, so do expect a sense of independence and appreciation of your identity.  Even if people may see you as an overly sensitive soul, at least you're able to work your magick without compromise.  Because honey, no one can be you. Look good for yourself. And if that ex of yours try to come back in the picture, let them know what they're missing out. 

Mars will move into Taurus on 3/9, which may offer a straightforward approach to your relationships. It can also provide a sense of grounded passion, especially when finalizing your thoughts about how you feel towards something or someone.  The oracle card "Friend" advises that you may need to help out someone during a rough patch. It can also indicate that you may need someone to lend you a supportive hand.  

Towards the middle portion of the month, the Sun card offers a sense of celebratory and carefree stance in your current life.  You may be feeling inclined to adopt a "happy go lucky"  attitude during this time.  The Full Moon in Virgo on 3/12 would probably bring forth a stressful time in terms of how much a workaholic we can be on achieving our goals. 

As much as we have our good intentions on bettering ourselves, sometimes less is more.  Take a moment to feel the regenerative properties of the Sun card - spend plenty of moments by yourself, pamper your well being and not give two shits on what others think. This is especially true for parents who have been overworked and haven't received a break.

*waits for a million dollars to drop from the sky and relocate to an island far away*

Mercury in Aries on 3/13 offers up a time for some witty and spit fire conversations. It might also provide a great time to get in touch with your writing if you're looking to go on a comical spree. Laughter is the best medicine after all. With the Sun card, you may find yourself starting up projects that'll allow you to verbally communicate with ease under this planetary aspect.  Sun will move into Aries on 3/20, the first of the zodiac. The oracle card "Thief" indicates that while you may feel inclined to let your guard down, be wary of those who want to take advantage of your kindness. Seal off any loose ends, and demand for receipts if needed. After all, your best judgement call can save yourself and your sanity.

At the end of the month, we have the Nine of Cups. This is a moment where you may want to reflect on your personal and spiritual growth. Numerology speaking, the number nine can indicate an almost sense of completion. There may be a sense of regression when looking into past moments that led up to your current state.  Speaking of which, the New Moon in Aries on 3/27 is a time where we need to get our asses in full gear.  Sure, we may be feeling lazy and not wanting to do anything. But this is not the time to be procrastinating. If you screwed up before, the New Moon in Aries may offer a second chance to take upon the initiative. Pallas in Aries moves in on 3/30, where we will definitely see plenty of competition and fierceness.   Do expect some claws to come out, but focus on healing yourself before going into battle.  No one wants a weak bitch. Stand up for yourself by any means necessary. 

Mercury will be moving into Taurus on 3/31, which may allow you to take the time in preparing your ventures. Coinciding with the fiery energy in Aries, you may find yourself being pushed over to the edge. Remember this - no one can't coerce you to do something unless if that was your intention all along. If you're okay being in the confinements of your own home instead of participating in noisy discussions, then by all means please do so. However, keep in mind that your sense of wisdom would not be parallel to others. You may feel that your opinions are right and therefore, may think it's not necessary to listen on what others have to say.  The oracle card "Money" is an indication that you may find beauty and value in certain things, so don't feel ashamed if you're making an investment that will help you out in the long run. 

I hope you enjoyed this monthly forecast! Let me know what you think in the comments. 

Blessings,
Diana

Shadowscapes Tarot Deck Review

The Shadowscapes Tarot Deck by Stephanie Pui-Mun Law (published through Llewellyn) is by far one of the many gorgeous decks that I've encountered.  Most of the imagery consists of a dream like quality with some Asian and Celtic influence. The cards have a matte finish and is easy to shuffle.  It follows the same structure as the original Rider-Waite-Smith deck with some differences in terms of the imagery. 

In terms of ease of use, this deck is perfect who wish to take their time in delving into the lush imagery of the cards. Compared to the Rider-Waite-Smith deck, the Shadowscapes Tarot Deck offers a lot more symbolism, which may be overwhelming for those who are new to tarot. Overall, this is a wonderful deck to add into the collection.  

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Mystical Cats Tarot Deck Review

I adore cats so much. When I found out about the Mystical Cats Tarot Deck, I was in complete awe of the imagery.  Suffice to say, the vibes from the deck did not disappoint me.  The deck is by Lunaea Weatherstone and is published by Llewellyn.  

The card stock has a semi-matte finish and is easy to shuffle.  It loosely follows the Rider Waite Smith deck. There are differences of the suits. For the Minor Arcana cards, it's divided up to Earth, Sky, Sea and Fire.  In terms of interpretation, the artwork is very gorgeous and does not skimp on the details.  I've done a test reading with this deck and it provides a great deal of accuracy when helping the querent.  In a way, it feels like the cats in each of the cards are having a conversation. Highly recommend this deck!

ating: 5 out of 5 Stars