the 13 Pagans who have been influential to me

Two blogs have listed the Most Influential Pagans and I thought I’d list mine.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/panmankey/2013/03/25-most-influential-people-in-the-birth-of-modern-paganism-american-wing/

http://goddesspriestess.com/2013/03/29/top-thirteen-most-influential-people-in-goddess-spirituality/

The Pagans I call influential are the ones who I have met and have been my teachers at least once. Some I have called friend and some I still do. So in no particular order.

Marion Weinstein – Author of Positive Magic which at the point I came into paganism/Wicca was the only readily available book. I was lucky enough to be one of her escorts when she was a presenter at Harvest Moon much later. She was one of the most down to earth people you will ever meet and the typical Jewish grandmother. She was always asking if I needed a sweater, wasn’t I cold? So I made her a button,” I am the Goddess of all things and all things should wear a sweater!” She was a delight.

Z Budapest – Mother of the Dianic movement. Love her or hate her, Z is the founder of Dianic craft and deserves respect. I happen to find her a lot of fun most of the time. She is a fighter and fights for what she believes to be right and has the courage of her convictions. Something that can be awfully rare. Her tiny yellow book had a big influence on me when It first came out.

Shekinah Mountainwater – Author of Ariadne’s thread, great book if you haven’t read it. She spoke at the WCWMF one year and had every one mesmerized.

Ruth Barrett – is both a lovely person and musician but a pillar to the Dianic Movement. I met her long ago before Circle of Aradia came about and will always admire her.

Selene Fox – I had the pleasure of meeting her at the first Harvest Moon and participated in her wonderful workshops and the next year when she came she attended my coven’s first open women’s circle and was a major calming influence a some very scared, first time in public priestesses. We adored her for that and always will.

Marija Gimbutas – her scholarship was amazing and I had the pleasure to meet her when she gave the Pallas Society their first workshop. That was a wonderful evening of slides and knowledge and laughter. She is sorely missed.

Scott Cunningham – a fantastic, funny, take no shit, wonderful person that I had the best time with one Harvest Moon. Even if he did embarrass the shit out of me. He was a font of wisdom and common sense something that can be sorely lacking in pagans sometimes. Rest well, Scott.

Paul Bereyl – my other favourite gay male pagan whom I dearly love. Author of several books on herbalism , astrology and the Wiccan Bardo. I took many classes from him. He can be a stern task master and has the most mischievous sense of humour. The time he spent in LA was wonderful and I loved going to Circle when he was having them here. I just wish I could get up to Seattle to see him again.

Pat McCollum – An amazing man, generous friend and our best ambassador. I met him at the first Harvest Moon. He is doing wonderful work as a prison chaplain and as he travels the world. He also knows a lot about herbs and the craft. He also is married to another wonderful person who is rather quiet now, Barbara McGraw, but if you ever get to hear her sing her goddess music, do it!

Merrie Foerster – My first teacher , on the first board of the Pallas Society and one of the founders of Harvest Moon. Priestess extraordinaire, ex Marine MP capable of scarring little Mormon boys who show up during Circle for life.

Ffiona Morgan – Author of the Daughters of the Moon tarot. Wonderful priestess and maker of jewelry and a mainstay of the West Coast Women’s Music Festival. We always had to hurry to her booth to see what she had and to get the women who hadn’t bought her deck to buy one to colour. She also had at least one Circle at the fest that was a can’t miss date.

Steve Blamires – Author of various well researched works on Celtic Craft. I got to be Steve’s escort at the Harvest Moon he was main presenter at and I had the best time even though we had a hard time finding things to do since most things were closed on a holiday Monday. We ended up at Descanso Gardens, roaming under the trees and talking like old friends. I had a great time comparing what my Scottish grandmother had taught me and what he as a Scottish native knew. It was a wonderful day.

Diana Paxson – I fell in love with her novels but I got to meet her at one of Z’s Goddess 2000 camps and go to her workshops on Scandanavian seers, runes and other Northern European women’s spirituality topics the 2 times I was able to attend. Excellent teacher and I love her writing fiction and non-fiction.

So those are my thirteen pagans who were influential on my practice aside from my grandmother who was not an influential person to other pagans but she was to me.

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2 thoughts on “the 13 Pagans who have been influential to me

    • When I became a pagan almost 30 years ago the community was so much smaller that people travelled a long ways to be part of the few festivals there were and Los Angeles has always had a an active community. I was lucky.

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