High Priest of Star Fire
Member of the Council of Elders
2013 Priest in the Wildflower Tradition
2015 High Priest in the Wildflower Tradition
Dedicated Deities and Spirits:
Hecate, Apollo, Thor, and Bears.
Sunsmith the Shaman, maker of things and events with Star Fire,
Began young, about nine, working with nuns and monks
Making trees talk, plants sing without folks’ ire
Feeling a need to share these secret chunks
He sought the animals to inspire.
Knowing the death of spirit that raged in the factory stink,
He sought education for its use in making the world a bit better.
Then went to the mountains for education and feelings began to sink.
He left religion to know the multiverse, encountering life without fetters.
Roaming and searching with building power,
He was called to the Arctic and a Shamanic tower.
Working with seas, more mountains and ice,
Stars, bears, seals, & tundra made life have more spice.
Sunsmith now works all forms of life
Within and without the forms of CAYA.
Yet knows limits are there, even for strife.
Star energy he makes: useful for what ails ya.
The Essential Offering:
For as long as I can remember, the Fire inside stars has been my friend. Best Friend. Even stars that are not really very “friendly” in human terms, are OK with me being inside and using the Fire as energy for what I need; or just to play in the Star Fire. In many forms of meditation, especially lucid dreaming or in Sauna and Steam Room after workouts at the gym, that “space” in riding the bike on trails where it is safe to explore stars, I tend to automatically become one with Star Fire. I find that Star Fire is useful as energy for healing, as energy to send to those who need it (getting a new job, life problems, helping plants, animals). My life is full of good stories, for I live it as a continual adventure. I’m willing to share stories – most consider them entertaining, and if someone is really interested, they can (usually) be fact checked.
Part of the adventure series that is practical to the CAYA community is the counseling training I received at University of Chicago. Since I do not have a license in this state (and do not intend to get one), I can only offer “life coaching” for those who may need confidential help with some problems; such help would need to be approved by Stella Iris, Rabbit, and/or the council; obviously such help would be totally confidential. That leads to the Personal:
Statement of Personal Ethics
I honestly have several levels of personal responsibility to which I apply the same personal ethic:
1. The lowest level of personal responsibility is that of an “almost” curiosity where I feel there is little real responsibility. I pay the fare on a bus or BART, I take the ride, end of interaction. It is still very important for me to say “thank you” to bus drivers and occasionally write a note to BART thanking some train driver for something: The last one was for the announcement that THIS TRAIN IS LATE. WE HAD A LATE START. I’M STILL GOING TO GO AT MAXIMUM SPEED TO MAKE THE “MEET” AT MACARTHUR.” For non BART riders, the Pittsburg train “meets” the Fremont (I’m going to Lake Merritt to see Rabbit or Fruitvale for class or now for the new Ritual Home.
The ethics here are that I still assume without exception, that I will pay the fare, respect other persons, and the property of the ride. I go to the gym, use the equipment, respect the property and without even really thinking about it, I am polite and respectful of others there. Honestly, I have no friends there, only those with whom I see often enough to exchange some personal information. Yet at all times, I am respectful. At what I am calling the “lowest level” it is to be, without thought, as an absolute habit, to be respectful of persons and property.
Occasionally, an opportunity presents itself to DO something – spot for someone struggling with a heavier weight; once, to give away shoes (well used and ready to be replaced) to someone with whom I occasionally chat who had left his shoes on the locker room floor; his shoes had been stolen. They had no real value, the theft was “just” a nasty prank.
Or assist a person who has over worked, and got into that state of semi consciousness in the steam room. I noted that she was slumping, and had trouble acknowledging that others were present. Just carefully, and nicely guiding her out allowed her to “wake up” and be OK. This may not seem like a big deal yet it cost me TIME…. I had to take cool off time, (at least 20 minutes) and then re start the whole sweat process (45 minutes to an hour). I chose to give a bit of help and knowingly faced time in the cold (or just sitting around) for a later bus. To me, helping the person is more important than “inconvenience.”
Personal Ethics Point One: Persons matter much more than things and time.
2. The next level of Personal Ethics means that I will not lie. It is not necessary to tell EVERYTHING to every one all the time but it is important not to deny that I am pagan, polyamorous, or to invent stories that are not true.
Personal Ethics Point Two: I will neither lie nor cause “problems” by telling too much, nor “outing” another.
3. The next level of personal ethics seems simple: I WILL take the best care of myself that I can. Period. That means I will NOT get into things or events that I do not care about. I am not very interested in watching sporting events. So it is a waste of my time and basically a lie to agree to watch some football game. Taking care of myself means that time is better spent reading, working out, taking a LONG bike ride, adding more thought and creativity to a Ritual. My physical, mental and spiritual well being are not to be compromised.
4. The highest level of Personal Ethics means I will make the best efforts I can to do more than I promised for any thing or event in which I agreed to be involved. That includes the whole of whatever I promised. A major example is working with CAYA. That means more than doing the best I can in a ritual, class, or event. That means BEING in the community, helping someone move, planting a tree, listening to someone’s joys or problems.
Perhaps the most meaningful example for THIS statement concerns ritual. I will NOT do a “sloppy” job for any part of any ritual or CAYA activity. I WILL do the best I can each time. That means I will take the risk of going “all out” each time. That means looking materials up before planning meetings, participating in the meetings. That means knowing the part and the rest of the ritual. That means each time, going as far as I can – which can Aspect too far, and fall completely flat, a total “fail” that is totally my fault, admit it, learn, and go on. When the effort is VERY successful, there may be a question of how well THAT effort would work for a different audience. Then it becomes my job to take the time, no matter how much effort is involved, to figure out an answer and deliver that answer.
Personal Ethics Statement: In addition to a base of paying my dues and being always truthful, I will always do my BEST at everything I try.
Even the “small stuff.”
Some Favorite Pagan Books:
Joseph Campbell – that says enough.
Laxdaela Saga (Iceland 920 CE?) Good English Translation published in 1969, more paperbacks Penguin Books in the 1970’s.
The Jotunbok, Raven Caldera, Ashodel Press, 2006
Shamanism: Archaic Techniques of Ecstacy, Mireca Eliade, Princeton University Press, 1964
Three Books of Occult Philosophy, ed. Dnald Tyson, Llwellyn, 2000
Dark Moon Rising, Raven Kaldera, Asphodel Press, 2000.