This is me…

 

…staring into shadows, looking where I know I shouldn’t and letting forbidden knowledge seep into my bones. It’s a quiet kind of spirituality, rooted in the Earth and bonded with Death. I make no claims to fancy titles and have no pretty sounding official name for what I do every day. It’s just My Way. And I realize that while I walk my magic alone, I manage to find and touch the ones that really need me. Do they know I need them too? What use is all the beauty found in the other world if you don’t have someone to share it with? If you want to know me, then you should know that this is how I live my life every day. I peer into the shadows, the darkness, and the places I should not, and then I share the beauty I find with you.

When I was four years old, I lost someone very close to me. Someone who, to this day, I still wish was here. My father’s brother, my Uncle K. He died saving my fathers life, in a rather tragic farming accident of all freaking things. We were very close him and I… I can still remember what the world looked like from his shoulders 🙂

His death was hard. But, his funeral… well, I was far too young to deal with what happened on the day of his funeral. I was a very sad little girl… but it was not just my own sadness I was feeling. Somewhere along that day (that very, VERY long day) I had started to soak up the sadness and panic of those around me, feeling things and knowing things that were far too much for someone at that age to feel. I know I will never forget the sheer, gripping fear grabbing at my throat as I started drowning in other peoples sorrow though.

Nor will I forget seeing the man who made the fear go away.

At the grave side service, when I was very certain I was going to die of panic, I saw a man standing alone among the head stones, not so very far away. He was tall, slightly pale, and had dark wavy hair that just reached his shoulders. His eyes were steel gray, and he wore a dark colored sweater that seemed to be far too soft to be real. His eyes caught mine in my panic, and a kind of calm set over me. I could hear him softly whispering above the cries and words of the congregation around me.

“Give it to him little one. He can still hear you.”

I can imagine my four-year-old brow knotting up when I whispered back “Give him what!?”

A smile…

A smile that was cold and frightening and somehow comforting all at once.

“I’ll show you.”

And he did. I can only describe the feeling as being used as a funnel. An emotional funnel that had one end in this world, and the other in the afterlife. But I *felt* every single thing as it passed through me. Pain, fear, anguish, doubt, guilt, anger, heartbreak… It became mine for a moment before it went through.

And thus, I met Thanatos for the first time.

I was 15 the first time I looked my own Beloved Death full in the face. For two weeks I had a Doctors words ringing in my ears. “It might be cancer.” I had been in pain for weeks. Moving hurt.

I remember just not wanting to think about it, not have to deal with it, and not having to be afraid. But somewhere was also a voice, very tiny at the time, that was telling me to come to terms, to think about it, feel it and own up to my fear.

I walked up the side of the rocky, cacti strewn valley that was home until I reached the top, and then I sat.

I remember sitting for a very long time.

The fear and the horror of it all washed over me time and time again. I could die. At 15. Having never realized a single dream, having never tasted a single thing I yearned for.

And I remember a sudden breeze… it pulled my hair away from my face like a lover would… a touch that was more than just the wind.

And Thanatos loomed over me again at that moment… Not fearful, not frightening, but reality-shattering REAL. I could feel the afterlife and Him waiting for me, patient and loving darkness who would take me into his arms some day.

“Not yet.” He whispered and was gone as quickly as he came, leaving a sobbing, stained little girl in his wake.

That moment changed everything, colored everything that came after. At the very core of myself, I understood that me and Death would always dance this little dance of close calls and near death and quiet-scary moments far more often than would ever be comfortable.

Years later, after being a mother and lover and a woman who very much felt like a lost soul, I faced Thanatos full in the face yet again. This time, physical death was used as Initiation. This time, I was unsure if I would be allowed to come back.

“My death came in threes.”

First came the death of my ego. The loss of the face I knew… the loss of my beauty, and the start of my pain. Nine Days. Three times Three. The Irony was not lost to me.

Second came the death of my strength. For the first time ever I failed and faltered. For the first time ever, I lost the physical power that had always been mine. For the fist time ever, I turned to weakness and loathing. I allowed a monster to take root of me, a monster that only pretended to help the pain. To slay the monster I had to kill off my anger at my loss.

Thirdly came the moment when my body, ravaged by infection and medication and pain, just…. stopped. My heart, caught up in a seizure, allowed me to be present for my death.

I was pulled apart, three by three, watching her reconfigure me.

The fire in me now is of Her… I cannot ever be the same.

Reborn, so brought to Life. Not much left of the woman before… Do I mourn her beauty and light heart? A little perhaps.

Loss is always loss after all.

But I grow tired of that morning.

So now, I shall walk among the starlight as I am meant to be… And I will make no more apologies for not being *her* any longer. Mourn her if you feel you must, but know that the woman who stands before you now is far stronger, and far more willing to live than the other ever was. ”

People sometimes ask me if Im afraid of dying.

I always say no.

I know who is coming for me, whose arms I will find myself in. In a way, I yearn for that… but I also know I have other obligations (most notably, to his Beloved Mother Nox) that will keep me for as long as needed. And while I may be unafraid of Thanatos, I still have many a thing to live for. And that is a much sweeter thing to be alive for.

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A simple starting point…

I get questioned often enough about why I use the Term “Infernal Polytheist” for myself that I think it is well past time to address it, and to address just what this “Infernalism” is and means to me, and some of the concepts that are central to it in my practice. As of writing this, I keep in contact with handful of people who are studying these concepts and are working with these Deities on their own, and as we have shared information and experiences with one another, some common ground has shown it’s self, and Im hoping I can capture it well enough here… at least well enough to allow for understanding of our *base* as it were.

For starters “Polytheistic Infernalism” is not really a standing Religion, but more of a Religious Concept that centers on The Gods and Spirits of the various Underworlds, and all the different Concepts that encompass Darkness it’s self. It is a Concept that sees The Darkness and The Light as two different Spiritual Constructs, which have very different paths of interaction, and concerns it’s self with the workings of The Gods and Spirits Darkness rather than the (very well tread, very well known) concepts of Those Of Light. Not because one is better than the other, or because they are at odds with one another, but because at a Polytheistic Infernalists very core is a tugging that cannot be denied, a tugging that leads our feet off of the Path of the Many, and into the Shadowed Worlds where so many monsters dwell. Unlike those who go through “The Dark Night of the Soul” and return gladly to the Daylight, or those who take a few spiritual journeys to conquer what they see as their own negative darkness, a Polytheistic Infernalist finds themselves quite at home in the Shadows of both worlds.

Now, right here is where many people start to delve into very tiresome clichés… Images of Goths and LARPing Vampire get togethers (Those are still fun though!) , teenagers haunting their local graveyards smoking cloves and playing with ouija boards (also fun), self proclaimed “Dark Magicians” who couldn’t magic their way out of a wet paper sack (these guys are less fun)… When most people start talking about “The Darkness” or “The Shadowside” this is what they see represented. This is why so many people who are called to do this work keep it to themselves, and pretty much go at their practice alone. These clichés are part of what I am hoping to help others break free from if they like , and why Im writing all this… so that they can peruse the Darkness in a serous, authentic, and healthy manner. Because there is so much of worth that is yet uncovered.

I am going to be addressing a number of basic concepts and some simple applied language and terms to give one a more firm footing about the actual subject matter of these concepts. The sad truth is, that when one tries to delve into this subject matter in a way not aimed at the very shallow or the played up spooky, one quickly discovers that the subject of the Infernal Strain of Spirituality is missing vast chunks of foundation in our top heavy and light obsessed world. There are many popular misconceptions carried forward by mainstream religions, consumed media, and bad Alternative Religious Concepts. Instead of trying to combat those things, it is actually a far more simple process to start from the underground up as it were.

The first thing we should address is “What, exactly, are your referencing when you say Darkness?” Hint: it is far more than one, singular thing. Having spent years wrapped up in the study of these very things, and with help from some of my Infernal leaning Associates, I have come up with The Three Concepts of Darkness as a basic introduction to some Key Concepts that are often worked with.

The First Concept of Darkness is the Darkness Present in our Physical World. This is the Darkness of Night Time, The Darkness of Shadows Cast by Objects, And the Darkness of Earth, which can be both natural (places like caves) and man made (places such as basements). While each of these Concepts of Darkness are rooted in our physical world and can be experienced as *physical* things , they each also have different spiritual qualities, and different energy patterns that one can manipulate and interact with. This is the first Concept of Darkness that I encourage people to interact with at length, as the nature of these Shadows are often mirrored in the other two concepts. The stand apart here is, of course, the Darkness of Night, which is more than the simple absence of light and physical Nighttime, but also a Primal Deity that I will address at length at a later date.

The Second Concept of Darkness is the Darkness of our Inner Landscape. This is the Darkness we carry inside of us, our inner monsters, our darkest natures. As a society obsessed with the Spiritual Concepts of Light, very few people ever take the time to learn about their Inner Dark Landscape. While it is given lip service in many religious settings, it is most often treated as something to be conquered, something to be beaten into submission, and something to be buried deeply, ignored, and never shown to others. The Monsters and Predatory Natures dewclawed and defanged for polite society. For those who are called to the Infernal Side of Spirituality, this is not only toxic to our basic nature, but can actually harm our being able to function in the Infernal Realms should we find need to go there. For someone willing to go through the process of taking this Darkness inside and learning to cherish it’s gifts, the outcome is nothing less than a shattering restructuring of our very concept of self. Those who are willing to fold their inner darkness into the fabric of their every day lives are catalyst of spiritual change in themselves and others.

The Third Concept of Darkness is the Darkness of the Underworld (that I personally approach as Erebus)… This is the misty darkness where rests all of the various Underworlds, the Shadowed Land of Death, and the Birthplace of all Dreams. It is in this Place that the Infernalist finds themselves the most strongly drawn too. While popular Religions tend to consider all places nested within Erebus “Hells” (and do not be mistaken, those Hells DO nest here as well) the landscape of Erebus is expansive with both beautiful afterlives, and pockets of beauty that can rival anything in the Lighted World.

These Three Concepts of Darkness, while being separate things, very often have an extreme level of interplay as well. Dreams drift to us from the Underworld, Night Descends and brings the Keys to the Doors of Erebus closer to grab at… their are many, MANY levels of interaction at play all wrapped up in that single word of Darkness. For those who wish to work the Infernal, knowing how this interplay happens, and understanding the different forms of Darkness are the beginning steps to unraveling ones place within the landscape of darkness.

My death came in threes.

First came the death of my ego. The loss of the face I knew… the loss of my beauty, and the start of my pain. Nine Days. Three times Three. The Irony was not lost to me.

Second came the death of my strength. For the first time ever I failed and faltered. For the first time ever, I lost the physical power that had always been mine. For the fist time ever, I turned to weakness and loathing. I allowed a monster to take root of me, a monster that only pretended to help the pain. To slay the monster I had to kill off my anger at my loss.

Thirdly came the moment when my body, ravaged by infection and medication and pain, just…. stopped. My heart, caught up in a seizure, allowed me to be present for my death.

I was pulled apart, three by three, watching her reconfigure me.

The fire in me now is of Her… I cannot ever be the same.

Reborn, so brought to Life. Not much left of the woman before… Do I mourn her beauty and light heart? A little perhaps.

Loss is always loss after all.

But I grow tired of that mourning.

So now, I shall walk among the starlight as I am meant to be… And I will make no more apologizes for not being *her* any longer. Mourn her if you feel you must, but know that the woman who stands before you now is far stronger, and far more willing to live than the other ever was.

For I am now truly Amorella Moon, Filia Nocte, Puer Noctis… the walker of places in between.

And I cannot go back…

Im Standing…

… at the place where Death becomes rebirth. At the moment when souls, cleansed in brimstone and bloodmeal make themselves ready to Become again.

I should not be here.

This is not a place for mortal eyes.

Given this glance as a gift to ease this suffering… this sorrow I always hold.

I understand my Darkest Mother… I understand.

The draught these souls drink is the Elixir of Forgetting.

The water at their feet is of a Primordial River, that lets them forget. A gift given out of love.

And this is what I disallow myself out of Duty.

A couple of Old Mystic/Religious Terms we need brought back…

Theophoria: Greek. The act of Bearing a Divine Spirit. A type of Divine Madness (This is not an act of Divine Possession however.)

Exstasis: Greek. Displacement of the Self. “Stepping Outside of”. This is sort of like an Out of Body Experience, but undertaken under Divine Influence.

Klesis: Greek. An invocation of the (primordial) powers of the Earth, the Heavens, and the Underworld.

Henosis: Greek. Mystical Union with a Deity. (Also not an act of Possession)

Katabasis: Greek. A downward movement. To descend into the Underworld.

Psychagogia and it’s friend Psychomanteia: Greek. The first is the gentle persuasion of souls from the underworld, or the entertainment of such. The second means to politely divine by consulting said spirits. Much more polite language for the engagement of The Dead.

It is not bloodstains you see here…

dancetormented2

… but the mark of crimson tear drops that snuck out of my soul. Tragic. Hollow. Perfect. Shards of Divine Madness and Inspiration.

It must be understood that every poem, every painting that I put my hand to is both an extension of my heart, and a piece of my devotional practice to M’Lady Night. These are small portions of myself, small portions of Her that are created in near impossible ritual and pain. That is the way it must be, bartering blood and sanity and life for the moments when I can bring her Dark Divinity crashing down to this earth for others to discover and revel in.

Her and Her Dark Children are ALWAYS my why. They are my Cornerstone, my Muse, my Masters. If you find yourself moved by anything I have turned my hand to, understand that you are being moved by Them as well. They have me hide secrets. They have me hide keys to Divine Mysteries. They have me create beauty in the Darkness for those who need it.

And at the end of the day (And at the End of My Days), that is what I will be known for… A Divinely inspired, willingly tortured poetic soul…

… Im pretty OK with that.

Another day Underneath…

Downward… I had to fight my way in.

Ill lit stone walls. I only knew that I was in Erebus.

A White Snake clasped round my arm, a sometimes companion on these journeys, let loose, leading away those guarding your cell. They were shadowy, constructs that seemed to be less material than the surroundings.

Closer to a cell door… I find you Imprisoned.

By your own hand, but you don’t know that.

So I removed the cell doors, fought off the remaining cell guards, and then slayed the monster that you appointed to punish yourself. Is this the reason for distance? Tied down to a chair of cold iron… No. This will not do. I release you as you recognize me, only seen once before when I was a babe in arms.

Hello my Uncle… welcome to freedom you denied yourself all these years.