My exact answer that I submitted in writing was as follows: “Since we are having the event in a public space, I cannot say that they cannot come. However, they need to understand that if they make a choice to come they need to recognize that they are in OUR sacred space.” When I hosted the Enter the Womb event, we were on private property which gave me the opening to say no non-women of color and with me renting a public venue, I was not quite sure of how I would be able to carry that for legal reasons. So I used the wording I felt would cover that. However, after doing further research and realizing that we are an organization with specific memberships I am in my full right to say that if you are not a women of color, do not waste your money because I will not refund it.”
So to reiterate…..If you are not a Women of Color, do not come. If you buy a ticket we will dismiss you without refunds because you were told in advance that this event is not for you. If you are a brother…wish us well and send us your love. Make sure your wife, sister, dawta, mother have all their needs met so they can attend this event. ~ Mama Omi of Dawtas of the Moon
You see, I don’t want to spend time trying to explain to non-POC women the intricacies of my life. When the topic of this conference came up, I had to take the time to explain things to them that were exasperating, and ones that I really think they should know.
Part of the lesson I had to teach was that Black Witches/Workers/Healers get it from BOTH ends. Our own people shun us because they have been brainwashed by the church. Even though our practices and beliefs are thousands of years older than theirs (and well documented), they believe and judge us based on a book that was written 300 years after Christ died, and they only believe it because someone told them that they were going to hell of they didn’t.
Incidentally, I keep looking for the physical evidence of my former religion, but I can’t find any. If you can, let me know because I can find plenty of evidence of the religions I follow.
I had to take the time to exaplain how disappointing it is that I’ve been told by Black people that those who practice the ways of our Ancestors are savage devil worshipers. I’ve had family and friends (who I believed had better sense) tell me that they were not comfortable staying in my home anymore, much less having a conversation about my religious beliefs. They change the conversation, walk away, hang up on you, and leave Facebook group conversations without so much as a goodbye.
Now ain’t that a bitch considering I’ve spent my life having theirs shoved down my throat whether I wanted to hear it or not?
This is not to say whites don’t experience that as well, but because of our culture’s deep entrenchment in Abrahamic religions, and our values of keeping families intact that have been ripped apart for so long, these things add extra pain to this kind of ostracization.
So do you think I want a whole day of that shit when what I really want is to be around women who get me?
In my Bey voice, “HELL NAW.”
When I began to study Vodou, other ATRs, and aspects of the Occult (which by definition means “hidden” for nothing more than the above stated reasons), I thought I was entering a place where people had open minds and were welcomed. I found out very quickly how wrong I was. There were few places where I felt welcome, and often I was asked questions like I was the only Black occultist on this planet.
The funny thing is, life is the same for Black people in the occult as it is anywhere else in the world. You get to be the spokesperson for all Black people. Racism doesn’t disappear because someone no longer worships an Abrahamic religion. The venue of this treatment simply changes. It doesn’t go away.
To say I was disappointed is a massive understatement.
There is still a portion of the Pagan population who are racist as the day as long, and, to add insult to injury, we have cultural appropriators running roughshod through our religions and traditions trying to change things about them that make them uncomfortable.
When the writer of the blog referenced above was uncomfortable with Mama Omi’s words, she CHANGED THEM.
“When we call them on it, we are accused of being segregationists, and even racists. It only shows me than many don’t even KNOW what the sociological definition of racist is. You do know you have to have the ability to systematically oppress people, don’t you? Ask any Black person the last time we were able to do that.
Please, I’ll wait.”
We have not been able (or really tried that hard for that matter) to keep non-POCs out of ATRs, so please, please, please tell me how we have oppressed whites by simply saying, “you can’t sit with us” for ONE FUCKING DAY??? Oh, I know what is at play here.
They realize that we might actually like it and start doing it MORE OFTEN.
(You do know that is why there are loitering laws that are always directed at Black people. If you cannot gather, you cannot plan anything.)
Can non-POC still sit “other” places? Yes. Isn’t that what we were always told? How is that “separate but equal” sitting with you now that the shoe is on the other foot? It hurts like your ass has bunions, doesn’t it?
And no, men of ANY COLOR will be in attendance at the conference. I don’t care if you are Black, Brown, and down. The fact that a brother has to point out the fact how we are continuously ignored in the movement on national TV is shameful.
We want, no we FUCKING NEED, a safe place to go to be with women who experience the same things and face the same struggles. And it is not because Black women are not diverse, it is because our oppressors treat us THE SAME!
We have a need to gather, to love, to commune, to bemoan our condition, to find SOLUTIONS, and just to fucking BE!
No, I don’t need “Becky with the Good Hair” or “Mister/Hotep” looking over my shoulder and writing everything down/recording it on an iPhone while I do it.
It just ain’t gonna happen.
So now, I am delighted to see that there is a place for US where we can discuss the strange dualities of the church and Paganism. Where we can be Black and Brown women of all types. Where we can see our diversity even if no one else can. Where we can share, love, support, and grow. I hope that all sista witches support this. To register, please purchase your tickets here:
Dawtas of the Moon: Black Witch Convention
I’ll see you in October.