Is Lore and Myth Really Important?

Although I have read quite a few mythologies of gods from different cultures, I have an aversion to ancient mythology. I often feel uncomfortable relying on myth and ancient texts as part of my practice, mostly due to the fact that I often associate it with my birth religion, Roman Catholicism and also Abrahamic religions in general. I’m not sure I want to have any sort of mythology involved in my practice at all.

Would you say reading mythology is a big part of being Pagan? If I’m not willing to read myths or have lore as part of my practice, do you think getting involved in Paganism is a waste of time?

Herbal Reference Book?

I’m looking for a good reference book on herbs. The one I see recommended all the time is Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, but that’s also the one I see being decried all the time.

One of the biggest issues with Cunningham’s book seems to be that he doesn’t warn readers about the dangers of some herbs, especially in relation to pregnancy, medications, and stuff like that. But for someone who already knows that stuff, would it be a good book just as a reference for magic? Or is there something else you would recommend?

Ritual Attire?

I’m attending public rituals with a group and they asked us to wear attire that’s just for the rituals we do with them, something that isn’t street clothing. While there are many websites that sell clothing like this my problem is that a. I don’t have loads of cash sitting around for this and b. I’m plus sized and pregnant so getting clothing off of a website would be difficult.

So what I’m asking really is where did you get your cloths, what do you consider ritual wear, and what suggestions/advice do you have to give?

Wisteria Correspondences

I was wondering if anyone knew of any correspondences for wisteria. Living in the Southern U.S., wisteria is endemic. I’m used to the purple wisteria, but recently moved and here, they have white wisteria. I was thinking the white could be used for lunar magic/worship. They have an evocative scent and most flowers are used for love magic so I thought that might be a good correspondence. I’ve looked in Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs and the only reference is in the very back (if you own it, page 288) under properties of oils and it says wisteria is for protection. I’ve also checked the only other herbal I own, A Witch’s Guide to Herbal Enchantments, Folklore, and Divinations by Gerina Dunwich and there’s no mention of wisteria at all. Any help filling in this gap of knowledge is greatly appreciated.

Sensing and Recognizing Energy

A lot of what I’m learning about seems to first start with energy and then centering/ground/shielding/etc. It makes sense to me. I am going to throw out a definition here and hope I’m using it right, but I get animism and that everything has an energy or gives off an essence. But my hold up is…I can’t feel it. I’m of the belief that we all have the ability to sense energy but it isn’t nurtured growing up so you don’t realize that energy is around you, like when you hear a buzzing noise and eventually your body just tunes it out and you don’t hear it but it’s still there.

I have been reading and re-reading on Jenett’s website the portion about energy and how different people sense it with different senses. And I have tried the activity of rubbing my palms together and feel the resistance. But all I feel is warm palms from friction.

So here is where you lovely people come in!

Did you learn to sense energy or did you always have the ability? How do you sense it (sight, sound, touch, etc)? What types of exercises would you recommend? Can I have walls up and not realize it?

I think that meditation would play a role in this as well, just focusing on your breath and your self will allow some of those hidden skills to emerge and become less hidden. Has this been the case for you?

I feel like energy is an important factor and I’d like to practice it while I continue to learn.