Monday, July 21, 2014

A Pagan Trans March

This is my fourth Trans March. The first year, I came early and listened to all the speakers and musicians and reveled in being around people. That year, Trans March was like a secret in my heart: I knew I was like them, but almost no one else knew. The next few times I went to Trans March, I butched it up. I studied men and the way they moved and tried, if not quite to pass as male, then at least to pass as gender non-conforming. I got "sirred" on the train home. I came out. I walked with my girlfriend and her other girlfriend.

Then I really came out. I changed pronouns. I told my mom. I did some hard internal work. I started getting the occasional "sir" in my everyday life, despite making no attempt to hide my breasts. Kids got confused about my gender. (They're smarter than grown ups about some things.) I settled into my gender on some deep, fundamental level.

This year, when I went to Trans March, it was different. I wore my standard outfit: tight jeans, a white undershirt, and my brown leather jacket, the one that my dad gave me years ago. I also wore a leather mini-skirt over the jeans, and dark eyeliner. And my pentacle necklace. I felt giddy, applying the eyeliner, knowing down to my bones that I didn't need to pass as anything at all. I just was. I just am. I'm genderqueer. It's not my tie or my hair or my cock or my skirt that make me genderqueer. Those are accessories. They're helpful as signifiers, though I mostly combine them in ways that signify "I am outside the binary." They can be a wave to fellow outsiders. But I don't need them to be who I am.

On the way out the door, passing by my Hermes altar, I snatched a feather and came up with two. I left the first at the crossroads near my home, praying for a good march. As we twined through the streets and stalled momentarily in the San Francisco fog, I looked back. I was near the front of the march. We were almost at the top of the hill. Snaking back behind me were hundreds, maybe a thousand, trans folks of all stripes and types. People like me, glittering in the streets. With a laugh, I lifted the second feather high and let it go, letting it fly away in the wind.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Trans*/Pagan Events for July 2014

A periodical events round-up focusing on that which may be of interest to people who identify as Trans* and Pagan, radiating from a central point in the San Francisco Bay Area and extending Worldwide. All events are either Trans*-oriented or open to all genders. Events are Pagan-specific, Pagan-friendly, or at least Pagan-inclusive. If there's something you'd like to see listed here— or an error— please leave your message in the blog comments section. Let's have a wonderful time!

In this issue: Eugene, LA, Lopez Island, Oakland, San Francisco, Western MA… y en español

Maintained by Jaina Bee, a Priest/ess of CAYA Coven, San Francisco Bay Area, CA, USA, Earth.

The Church of 8 Wheels: LGBT Tuesdays—Gay Night Roller Disco
Tuesdays— July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 (a weekly event), 7-10pm
The Church of 8 Wheels; 554 Fillmore St., SF, CA
$10.00 entrance fee. Skate rentals available at $5.00

The Church of 8 Wheels is an "only in San Francisco" rolligious experience.  Come join D. Miles, San Francisco's "GodFather of Skate" and the Holy Rollers of the Church of 8 Wheels as we get our skate groove on at the Church of 8 Wheels.

Tuesday Nights at the The Church of 8 Wheels is dedicated to San Francisco's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender community. It's Gay Night Tuesdays at the Church!!! 

Come get your skate groove on every Tuesday night at San Francisco's Roller Disco, the Church of 8 Wheels, 554 Fillmore St. at Fell St. in San Francisco. The doors open at 7PM and we roll until 10PM. We play a variety of disco classics, old school funk and some of today's hottest skate beats, so come on down and roll with us.

more info call 415-752-1967or e-mail
Alphabet Sangha
Tuesdays— July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 (a weekly event). 7-8:30pm
East Bay Meditation Center (EBMC), 285 17th St. (@Harrison) in downtown Oakland

The Alphabet Sangha is a weekly meditation group for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Same-Gender Loving, and Two-Spirit communities. Because that's such a mouthful, we call ourselves the Alphabet Sangha. We gather for Buddhist meditation practice, Dharma teachings, and friendly, supportive community. Together we explore mindfulness and awareness for cultivating an open heart in our everyday lives.

We are a diverse, multicultural community, committed to social justice and to maintaining a Sangha that's welcoming to people of all races, ethnicities, classes, genders, abilities, sizes and ages.

We welcome people at all levels of practice. Simple beginning meditation instructions are always offered. If you have specific questions about meditation, a teacher is usually available to answer questions.

COST: EBMC is supported by the generosity of the Dharma communities that make a home there. There is never a fee charged for any event at EBMC. The teachings and space are always offered freely, and you are invited to donate money or offer your support through participation in the community.

ACCESSIBILITY: EBMC is fully wheelchair accessible, with two accessible bathrooms. Chairs and cushions are provided, and you are free to bring whatever else you need to make yourself comfortable. Out of respect for people with environmental illnesses, please do not wear fragrance or scented products.

GROUP FORMAT: Some of our core teachers are based in the Theravadin tradition, and some in the Soto Zen tradition. We also have wonderful visiting teachers from a variety of Buddhist traditions. One or two teachers generally lead(s) the group, and sometimes there are peer-led sits with no teacher, facilitated by members of the Sangha.

The typical evening format:

    7:00 Welcome
    7:10 Silent sitting (with some instructions)
    7:40 Dharma talk & group activity
    8:20 Announcements
    8:30 Closing

Please try to arrive a little before 7 so we can begin together.

Newcomers at any level of meditation experience are always welcome!

2014 Outfest LA: LGBT Film Festival
July 10-20
Directors Guild of America,  7920 Sunset Blvd., LA
$10 and up

Though there are lots of fine, fun, and fabulous films in this year's festival, the Documentary Centerpiece is this year's Sundance favorite, My Prairie Home, about singer-songwriter Rae Spoon who identifies quite cheerfully as a non-binary person. This looks so cool!

My Prairie Home
Sunday, July 13, 6pm
(Canada, 2013, 76 min)
Los Angeles Premiere
Directed By: Chelsea McMullan
With only a guitar and a handful of cash for Greyhound fare, transgender singer-songwriter Rae Spoon, who prefers the gender-neutral pronoun "they," performs across the vast and blue-skied plains of Canada, in dingy bars and badly lit concert halls. Together with filmmaker Chelsea McMullan, Rae's songs transport audiences from small, confining nightclubs into dreamy, beautifully photographed landscapes of music and memory. MY PRAIRIE HOME disposes of traditional documentary filmmaking, opting instead to explore Rae's discovery of love outside their evangelical home with haunting visuals and a hypnotic score that go hand-in-hand with Rae's highly personal melodies. Within the first moments of this Sundance Film Festival favorite, we're visually cued to subvert our expectations and spend intimate time with a subject who sees the world in their own way. A particular joy comes from delving into an artist's world of quiet musings; discovering Rae Spoon is this film's biggest reward. 
Energetic Alignment through private CoAlithesis treatments
Friday, July 11
Homestead Apothecary, 486 49th St #C, Oakland, CA
$50 (or $35 if you bring your own beeswax candle, sage bundle, or palo santo stick)

Take a guided & assisted dive into your own energy field & participate in a collaborative healing process. This treatment is especially recommended for those with a passion for working on their own healing & evolution. You will leave these sessions with hands-on experience of simple & effective energetic treatments, customized to your particular & current needs, that you can then continue to practice on your own to keep your energy strong, flowing and in balance.

Rae Diamond’s work arises from a devotion to the interrelation of matter and energy. She has practiced professionally as an astrologer, energy healer & teacher for over a decade. Rae apprenticed with Lakota shaman, Char Sundust, 2002 – 2006, became a Reiki master in 2005, & recently transplanted to Oakland from Seattle. She is also the director of the Long Tone Choir, plays synthesizer in an art-rock band, makes meticulous black & white drawings, & makes frequent forays into nature.
  This 45 minute treatment will occur on the 2nd Friday of each month. Please email the shop to see if appointments are available.
Low Cost Consultations every 2nd Saturday with Liz Migliorelli of Sister Spinster Apothecary
Saturday, July 12
Homestead Apothecary, 486 49th St #C, Oakland, CA
$40-60 sliding scale

Liz Migliorelli is a western clinical herbalist and magic maker. Her clinical herbal work is inspired by the folklore of the plants and aims to find herbs that bring your personal mythology into balance. In order to work on your health care needs and intentions, she provides a safe, non-judgemental, active listening space in order to discuss your health care options that may include herbal remedies, flower essences, dream work, magic and ritual, nutritional support, lifestyle changes and other healing modalities. She welcomes all bodies with deep compassion and respect. Liz has studied with folk herbalist Corinne Boyer in Olympia, WA and has completed the apprenticeship program and clinical year at the Ohlone Herbal Center in Berkeley. Liz has studied under herbalist Atava Garcia-Swiecicki and now works at Ancestral Apothecary as a teaching assistant and medicine maker. Liz is the founder of Sister Spinster Apothecary, where she is committed to making flower essences in love and ceremony for her community.

This 45 minute consultation will occur on the 2nd Saturday of each month. 
Pronouns page from The Gender Book (cc)

 The GENDER Book book-signing party
July 18, 6:30pm 
Wicked Grounds, 289 8th Street San Francisco
FREE, however please support the venue by purchasing a beverage or something, eh?

The GENDER book resident artist Mel Reiff Hill will be hanging out at one of our favorite coffee shops in San Francisco to sign books, doodle you some free drawings, offer you coloring and activity pages and eat some tasty snacks. Join us to get your copy signed and meet fellow gender scouts! 

The GENDER book is a fun and colorful resource which illustrates the beautiful diversity of gender. We give half of our proceeds back to book scholarship funds and use the rest to continue providing free gender education for all.

By popular request, a text-only version of the GENDER book. This is great if you want to pop the text from the GENDER book into a google translate to help talk about gender to your Spanish aunt or Filipino brother-in-law.

Other uses could be to help with accessibility (though there's also a specialized large-format version for that, if you prefer). This is meant to be used as a companion to the original, fully-illustrated version of the GENDER book, so print out both to help you read alongside!
Consulta Sanadora y Somática con Edgar Fabián Frías, MA de Nuestra Red Sagrada
July 19, A las 10a.m., 11a.m. y 12p.m.
Homestead Apothecary, 486 49th St #C, Oakland, CA  
$35 – $60 pago de escala basado en sus ingresos

Edgar Fabián Frías, MA tiene entrenamiento como consejero, terapeuta, y guía. Viniendo de un linaje de curanderos y sanadores indígenas de Zacatecas y Jalisco, Edgar entrelaza la sabiduría y prácticas de sus antepasados con prácticas y teorías modernas sobre la sanación y el cerebro humano. Recibio su maestria en terapia de salud mental y un certificado profesional enfocado en la neurobiología interpersonal en Portland, Oregon. Además tiene un año de entrenamiento con el proceso “Hakomi,” una forma de trabajar con nuestra energía corporal, psíquica, y espiritual, usando nuestra atención propia y nuestro enfoque para descubrir y explorar nuestros sistemas internos. El estudiar y aprender con compasión de nuestra experiencia propia, nuestros pensamientos, emociones y sensaciones, nos puede ayudar a lidiar con traumas y aprender a tener una nueva relación con nosotros mismos. Edgar ofrece una invitación a entrar a una red sagrada de apoyo, empoderamiento, compasion, y sabiduria.

Estás consultas de 45 minutos ocurren en el 3er Sábado de cada mes. Por favor llamenme al 510-255-1474 o envienme un mensaje a mi correo electronico para hacer una cita.

Mi pagina de web:

In English: 

Low Cost Consultations with Atava Garcia Swiecicki of Ancestral Apothecary
July 23
50 sliding scale

Atava Garcia Swiecicki, MA, RH (AHG). Atava has been studying and practicing healing arts for over 20 years and has an undergraduate degree from Stanford University and a graduate degree from Naropa University Oakland. Atava is also certified in both Acupressure and Jin Shin Jyutsu®, and is a clinical herbalist and professional member of the American Herbalist Guild. Atava’s teaching and healing work is a unique and powerful combination of herbal medicine, curanderismo, dream work, energetic bodywork and ancestral healing. She runs a small herbal product company, Ancestral Apothecary, that specializes in hand-crafted herbal remedies and potions. She also is opening a school and healing center dedicated to herbal, folk and indigenous medicine in the Oakland. Her website is:

This 45 minute treatment will occur on the 4th Wednesday of each month. Please email the shop to see if appointments are available. 

Faerieworlds 2014
July 25-27
Emerald Meadows at Mt. Pisgah, Eugene, OR describes Faerieworlds thus:
"Faerieworlds, the yearly festival that encourages attendees to “live your legend,” returns. Celebrating fantasy, magic and, of course, faeries, this annual event of pixie dust and gossamer wings provides everything a faer-folk enthusiast could want. By bringing in internationally acclaimed authors and artists, featuring a “Mythic Marketplace” and presenting a diverse group of musicians from the world over, Faerieworlds….caters to the varying tastes of those who adore the faerie realm."
For much more information, flit on over to:

Kinky Spirituality Munch
Sunday, July 27 7:00pm - 9:30pm (recurs last Sunday of each month)
Wicked Grounds 289 8th Street, San Francisco
FREE, please support the venue by purchasing something

We will be gathering at Wicked Grounds to discuss and share what Spirituality and Kink mean to each of us. Come. Share your beliefs. Share your practices. Talk about Rituals and Rites and what they mean for you. Meet other Spiritual and Spiritually Kinky pervs in the Bay Area. Know that you are not alone in your practices.

All faiths and practices are accepted without judgement or criticism.

You might be interested, but maybe you don't know what "Spirituality" means in reference to BDSM?

SACRED BDSM can include (but is not limited to):

Healing or coming into wholeness, holiness, integration and authenticity
Transformation & Shadow work
Trance & vision quest
Offering & prayer
Ritual & ceremony
Moving in and through the energy into release & awakening
Discovery, uncovery and/or recovery of that which is lost, hidden, suppressed, rejected or denied
Working with consciousness, energy, sensation, impact, power, & the chakra system to increase vitality, and inner harmony
Explore with us. Share your ideas. Find common ground together at Wicked Grounds.
 Save the date, preregister, and pack your bags for these enticements:

Haaayfest! Queer Music Explosion!!
August 8-10
Oddland!, Lopez Island, WA
Sliding scale donations, $20+, no one turned away for lack of funds

more info to come: Oddland!
Queer/Two Spirit Ancestral Healing Workshop
August 21-24
The Witch Barn, Amherst, MA
Cost: $500-$425. $75 deposit due by July 1st. 
We are thrilled to announce this special workshop on ancestral healing and remembrance workshop for the queer community. We’ll be gathering at the Witch Barn in Amherst, MS for a four day intensive on this subject. Topics covered include:

• Group and individual practices to connect to our ancestors
• Ritual and ceremonies for healing
• Dream work
• Healing with plant and stone allies
• Connecting to the elements of nature for healing and connection

Class taught by Atava Garcia Swiecicki of Ancestral Apothecary and Dori Midnight.

Dori Midnight practices community based healing and intuitive counseling, weaving traditional folk healing, plant medicine, and social justice. Drawing from her ancestral heritage (Ashkenazi/Sephardi, Roma, First Nations Shawnee), her passion for justice, and training as a clinical herbalist and flower essence practitioner, Dori's work is grounded in self-determinism, collective liberation, and the belief that healing ourselves is inseparable from healing our communities and earth. Dori teaches workshops on community healing, queer magic, and intuitive arts and maintains a local and distance healing practice in Western Massachusetts.
To Register: Contact ancestralapothecary[at] for a class application.
Freedom and Ease of Being: A Meditation Retreat for Our LGBTIQ Community (IMS)
September 2 – 7, 2014
Insight Meditation Society, 1230 Pleasant Street, Barre MA
Sliding Scale; $485-$605

IMS is one of the Western world's oldest and most-respected meditation retreat centers. We are dedicated to providing a spiritual refuge for all who seek freedom of mind and heart.

This insight retreat creates a space of ease and support for our LGBTIQ meditators to come together, beginners and experienced practitioners alike. Sharing silence and meditative space allows us to make greater peace with ourselves and our lives, one moment at a time. We learn to find an ever-deepening sense of wellbeing, touching joy and fostering the heart's release. While listening to the teachings of wisdom and compassion, and sitting and walking mindfully, liberating insights arise, and clarity and freedom is gained. We practice in this way both for our own benefit and for the benefit of others.

There may be rides available for this retreat. You can also offer a ride. Click here to view the listings.
24th Annual Southern Comfort Conference
September 3-7
The Crowne Plaza Hotel, Atlanta Perimeter at Ravinia
, 4355 Ashford Dunwoody Rd, Atlanta GA

Prices Vary, $130 and up
Scholarships available 

We are so glad you have decided to join us the 24th annual Southern Comfort Conference, the largest gathering of the transgender community in the world.  Whether its your first time, or you are an old hand, we’re sure that you will have the time of your life.

There is something for everyone on the SCC. Whatever your connection to the transgender community – whether you are transsexual, a cross dresser or in between; a spouse, a partner or a family member; straight, gay, bi or omni-sexual; post-op, pre-op or non-op; young or old; married or single; FtM or MtF – if transgender is an issue in your life, you are welcome!

Editor's note: the SCC 2014 program is still under construction. Check here in the next month or so for specific events that may be of particular interest to Trans*/Pagans!

Southern Comfort Conference