Happy 6th Birthday, Therioshamanism! And a Question For My Readers

Hey, you! I’ve got a question for you! (And by “you”, I mean anyone reading this blog, whether regularly or sporadically or just by chance.)

So I’ve been writing in this space for six years now. (Yay, happy birthday Therioshamanism!) Over time the focus has shifted and evolved; it went from being a fairly uptight “I’m going to make my own neoshamanism–here’s how I do it!” blog, to a more laid-back place in which I’ve done everything from profiles of different totems to records of outdoor excursions and even ruminations about environmental and sustainability issues and activities, among others. (I wrote a little more about this transition here.) I still consider all these to be integral to my spiritual path, which ceased being its own independent entity years ago and is now part of the whole woven tapestry that is my life, each and every day. So this blog has become a place for me to share these things, whether overtly spiritual or not, with you folks.

I know what I get out of the blog, then–a place to organize thoughts and share them with others. But I’m curious as to what you get out of it. Why are you here? What do you like to read when you’re visiting this blog? What do you want to see more of? What could you not care less about? I’m not so much trying to let other people decide what I should do with my little space here on the internet; rather, I’m curious as to how it may be benefiting others. I get emails and messages now and then from people who were inspired by something I wrote and grew because of it, and that always makes me feel like I’m doing my job as a writer well. So consider this a friendly invitation to fill me in on what brought you here, what keeps you bringing back, and sure, what would you like to see in the future? Let me know what’s helpful to you!

16 thoughts on “Happy 6th Birthday, Therioshamanism! And a Question For My Readers

  1. I only just started watching you but I think, like anyone who blogs, I’m looking for others to share with and connect with and anyone who combines spiritualism and nature is going to be on my radar haha especially some one who is so passionate about animals and their meaning as you are. I think that’s something I would like to keep seeing from you, animal totems and the like

  2. I found out about your blog kind of by mistake.While I know your work now as expressive and exploring under-focused areas of pagan/totem work (I’m looking forward to fungi totems like you wouldn’t believe!), I found you because you were THE Dead-Animal-Artist. I have always felt drawn to bones and skins, and after I found myself having shape-shifted with a coyote pelt rather by accident, I realized I couldn’t ignore that part of me for fear that it would fulfill some kind of stereotype. Your book “Skin Spirits” came to me shortly afterwards.It’d been out for a few years, but I guess I wasn’t ready for it–I was so used to keeping the spiritual part of my life secret. I live in a depressed community with little education and low tolerance (mostly because of the lack of education–these aren’t bad people, just uninformed, and they don’t have the resources to become informed) and its hard to find let this part of me grow in a harsh climate.
    Your blog serves as some inspiring mental or spiritual fertilizer. When the posts pop up in my facebook newsfeed, it’s just a little reminder going “Hey, you’re not alone! Far from it!”

    Though this is what drew me to your blog initially, I’ll admit I’m not a loyal reader of your spiritual posts. It’s hard to give an example of what I read the most of, because it’s whatever I feel compelled to readthat day.

    Truthfully, I believe your posts were environmentalism and living or spiritually that never go “unclicked”. I was already active in caring for my environment, but it’s always nice to see how I can make this part of my spiritual or every day life, and there are some ideas that I swear you wrote in response to my thoughts. (“Hey, it’d be nice if there was a piece on how cleaning up trash could be used as an offering–it’s a lot better than good intentions” and then BOOM, a few months later, there it was!) The diversity of the blog is also appealing to me, so I’m glad it’s not narrowed to one field.

    Congrats on 6 years–here’s to hoping there’s another 6 years!

    • Wow, I’m really happy I was able to offer you some resources you might not otherwise have had! I had a similar situation growing up in a small town; the internet in the 90s, even as relatively small as it was compared to now, also gave me more connection than I had otherwise. So I’m really happy to continue that tradition with you (and, hopefully, others!)

      Please do feel free to toss any ideas you have, share your own experiences, etc. in the comments when you find something you resonate with; maybe it’ll help others see they’re not alone, either πŸ™‚

  3. I’ve been a customer of yours for four years, and read your blog for five. You’re a teacher in my own spiritual practice, and your words have helped me immensely to accept my spiritual self. Your form of neo-shamanism resonates very strongly with my own experiences, and I’m always grateful for the thoughts you publish.

    You’ve changed from a blog more based in ritual to a blog more focused on the environment you worship, and I love seeing that spiritual evolution in your writing. There’s nothing wrong with either approach. I simply enjoy watching this change take place as you explore more and more of your own mind and the Oregon countrysides. You keep yourself open to any change while staying authentic and honest with your audience. Your beliefs show and you teach with every post, and that’s why I continue to follow your work.

    • I’m glad I’ve been able to help you with that, with words and concepts that ring true to you. Sometimes just having someone “get it” can be really confidence-inspiring, and I know comments like yours help me feel that I’m not the only person going in these directions.

      I do try to be transparent; I don’t give every little detail of my day, but I started this blog as a record of my path, and I like that people can see where the changes have occurred. People sometimes think that spiritual growth is linear–it really isn’t. It’s messy, and fun, and I hope I can share that idea some.

  4. I really like the blogs you make about our action’s effects on the environment. It helps me be more aware of how every thing I do can hurt or care for creation, and it also gives a unique perspective of how someone of a different faith views that relationship. Even though I’m Catholic, you give spot on commentaries about caring for nature and I love the honesty and thought you put behind each blog. πŸ™‚

    • *nods* That sort of action is something that’s absolutely not limited by spiritual path! We’re all in this same world, and I appreciate that we have some common ground in this; please feel free to add your own perspective in the comments whenever you like.

  5. I am always interested to observe how others walk their Path. I find it inspiring to know that I am not alone in my journey… others are journeying too… that helps me put one foot in front of another even when it’s lonely and when I am tired. I find it hopeful and motivating that others have a deep inner life. I walk a slightly solitary Path, not necessarily by design, I just don’t usually fit the well-trodden Paths even when I want to and try to… it’s helpful to see others have a full Spiritual experience and Path who are also journeying a less beaten track. And I appreciate how you honor those who are less well-honored on the mainstream, (even on better marked and accepted Shamanic) Paths.

    • Honestly, I started out solitary because I had no other choice, and it grew on me. But, like you, I found a lot of support in the writings of others, including plenty I’d never met face to face. Let’s keep creating our own pathways, and share the road when we can πŸ™‚

  6. I started following you several years ago when your blog was geared more towards just spirituality, totem work, costuming and therianthropy. While I realize you’ve moved beyond just those things, they’re all things I’d like to see more of here; minus therianthropy, obviously. πŸ˜‰

  7. I read because you were really cool at a festival. πŸ™‚ But I keep reading because it helps me frame my shaman-ish leanings as a suburban white girl and you teach me so much. I also always admire other people are around my age and more established in the community/have written more books/etc, it gives me something to push for! Thank you for all your writing and contributions to the community. ❀

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