We are Pleasant Gehman and Crystal Ravenwolf, a duo of divination divas, “spiritual sisters from another mister”. We’re life-long Tarotistas, obsessed with all things esoteric and paranormal. Look for our forthcoming book, “Walking The Tarot Path” coming soon!
We’ve created this blog to share our knowledge and to connect with the vibrant worldwide metaphysical and paranormal community. We hope it’s as fun for you to read as it is for us to write.
|Kristen J. Sollee: badass witch & author|
Whether you’re an occult aficionado, a modern witchlet or a pop culture maven, you probably already know who Kristen J. Sollée is. But just in case you don’t, she is, to put it mildly, a Badass Modern Witch. Multi-talented and insanely prolific, she’s practically super human. As a writer, teacher, curator, public figure…and as a head bangin’ wild rock’n’roll witch, she’s a magickal force to be reckoned with. Her first book, the critically acclaimed Witches, Sluts, Feminists: Conjuring the Sex Positive, was published by Stone Bridge Press in 2017, to rave reviews. It’s a highly intellectual, well-researched and provocative page-turner that’s also super easy to read.
Over the years, Kristen has produced and organized copious amounts of events, is a teacher at The New School, has lectured and taught workshops all over the world, and can pretty much be classified as the High Priestess of occulture. Her seemingly endless fountain of knowledge on all things metaphysical is tempered by her salt of the earth, breezy personality, making her a delightful and accessible educator as opposed to an over stuffy academic. In short, she's
A prolific writer, her work has appeared in several notable mainstream publications including The Huffington Post, VICE, NYLON, Time Out New York, and BUST, among many others. Recently, she’s appeared as a guest on on NPR, Viceland’s Slutever, and Huffington Post Live.
Her second book, Cat Call: Reclaiming the Feral Feminine published by Weiser Books, just dropped on September first. Exploring the intersection of the feline archetype and women throughout the ages, it’s an expansive, highly feminist work, tempered with her innate hip outlook as well as insight- and more than a touch of witchy, Crazy Cat Lady whimsy. Her signature stamp…er, pawprint…is all over it. Cat Call looks at everything from ancient myth and legend to pop culture, fine art and magick, tracing the lineage and various intersections between the feral feline and the feral femme from the Egyptian Goddess Bastet to the pussy hats recently made popular from Womens Marches and demonstrations. This book is thorough and so fabulous, so intelligent and witty, we guarantee that the second you start reading it, you’ll be purring your ass off making the human version of kitty biscuits.
Here’s our interview with Kristen…enjoy!
Divination Nation: What got you interested in witchcraft-
How did you start, who did you learn from-or did you study on your own?
Kristen J. Sollee: My mother is an intuitive, so I grew up with her teachings about meditation, manifestation, dream interpretation, herbalism, and divination. That said, I never considered it “witchcraft,” just “mom craft.” It really wasn’t until my 20s that I had a witch friend take me to my first witch shop, and then I slowly began exploring different practices more seriously—and a decade and a half later the studies continue!
How do you prepare for your work, is there anything specific that you do?
Kristen J. Sollee: Although I work in all kinds of settings, I feel the most electric and open to channeling my best work when I’ve woken up early, meditated, hydrated, slipped on a favorite old band shirt (probably Motley Crüe or Whitesnake) and cracked open my laptop. Somehow my cat always finds me at this point, and she’ll make a beeline for the computer, sitting right next to it, her paws placed dangerously close to the delete key.
Divination Nation: Tell us about your forthcoming book Cat Call: Reclaiming The Feral Feminine
Kristen J. Sollee: Cat Call is a love letter to the untamed crossroads where ‘the feline’ and ‘the feminine’ mingle and make magic. It explores why we have associated cats with women for thousands of years, and why there is such a potent association between cats and sexual and intellectual freedom. I delve into art, history, politics, and popular culture in the book—everything from Ancient Egyptian feline goddesses to kittenplay in kink communities to the pussy hat to feline-inspired tarot spreads. In a way, it’s kind of a continuation of the subject matter of my first book, Witches, Sluts, Feminists: Conjuring the Sex Positive—but with cats!
DN: Witchcraft is so trendy right now; what’s your opinion on the importance and relevance of metaphysical practices, magick and divination these days?
Do you think this fascination with all things witchy will continue or is just Fad of The Moment?
Kristen J. Sollee: There’s no turning back in my opinion. Of course trends might shift and change, but I truly believe these practices have the power to transform individual people and entire communities, so now that they’ve infiltrated to this point, they can’t really fade away, just shift shape.
DN: Tell us about Slutist and The Slutist Tarot
KSJ: Slutist was an arts and culture website I curated between 2013-2019 that basically became a mouthpiece for the unholy trinity of witches, sluts, and feminists. We featured a variety of articles, interviews, and original artwork from dozens of writers, educators, artists, witches, sex workers, and creatrixes. My friend Morgan Claire Sirene create the incredible Slutist Tarot two years ago, which centers sex workers and femme identity and tells the story of the maiden’s journey instead of the fool’s. Although I closed the website a few months ago to move on to new projects, the deck is very much alive and well and still for sale over at slutist.bigcartel.com.
DN: Talk about the (and/or your) relationship to witchcraft and rock’n’roll…
KSJ: Almost all of my inspiration comes from rock ‘n’ roll. I am unabashedly that fangirl who tears up when a band I love is onstage. Music is my church: I feel the most magic, the most connection, when I’m listening to music, playing music, or seeing live music. If I want to feel part of something bigger than myself I just go to a show and I feel healed. Or go to band practice! My witchcraft usually involves a musical component as well, particularly my sex magic rituals.
DN: Who and what inspires you?
Kristen J. Sollee: A combination of musicians, magicians, artists, writers and just travel and nature in general. David Bowie, Louise Huebner, Jinx Dawson, Lydia Lunch, bell hooks, Oscar Wilde, Donna Haraway, Murasaki Shikibu, Iggy Pop, Billy Idol, Leonor Fini…
DN: You teach, lecture, write… How do you spend your time when you’re not working?
Kristen J. Sollee: My dad lives in the woods of Wyoming so whenever I can get out there to visit him and go outside and ski or hike and wear a ridiculous cowboy outfit I am the happiest. Really, any kind of travel excites me, even if it’s to a part of New York City I haven’t explored yet.
DN: Please share some of your favorite metaphysical tips and advice for our readers.
Kristen J. Sollee: My favorite saying of my mom’s has always been “today could be the day...” And however you finish that sentence is up to you. It might sound twee, but it really helps me to wake up believing that every day has some adventure to offer—whether mundane or electrifying—that can be life-changing, inspiring, healing, or at the very least interesting…to me that’s where real magic is, accessing the infinite in the minutiae of the every day. From the split-second moments of inspiration that can expand to become your life’s work or the passing interactions that can be mined for a great story or the messages about the past/present/future you get from the world around you when you stop to listen closely…
Visit Kristen’s website: http://kristensollee.com/
|Pleasant and Kristen witchin' it up at The Green Man Store, LA|
On Sunday, Sept. 29, Kristen and Pleasant are reading from their books and signing them at an event for Cat Call in Los Angeles. A Love Bizarre 3042 Glendale Boulevard, Atwater Village. Local cat rescue organization Luxe Paws will be there with adoptable kittens, too!
A Love Bizarre
3042 Glendale Boulevard, Atwater Village
Sunday, September 29, 7:00pm - FREE
We’d LOVE to connect with you!
Visit us to book metaphysical and occult workshops, Tarot readings and healings, or to have us come out for a paranormal investigation: https://www.facebook.com/TheDivinationNation?fref=ts
Connect with us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/TarotAlimah
To find out more about Pleasant or request a reading or healing session, click here: http://pleasantgehman.com/tarot.html
For more on Crystal’s background, or request a reading or healing session, click here: http://crystalravenwolf.com