This post may be too little too late – and I’m not entirely sure that a blog post could have helped anyways, but I feel compelled to write one nonetheless.
To make a long story short, Danica Swanson and I were in correspondence for a few months late last year as I’d tried to figure out a place to live while I dealt with the madness that is legal immigration. I wanted to be as close to British Columbia as I possibly could, and co-habiting with her seemed like would be perfect for my very tiny budget. So I stayed a weekend with her last month so we could chat and so I could see the space. Unfortunately, my end of the deal fell apart and I’ll be moving back to LA instead – which has always been a worst-case scenario for me.
The really shitty part is that my staying with her in Portland was to help her maintain the Hermitage and the various projects she’s undertaken in service of the Gods, and now I’m not able to do that. You can read her blog post about the situation here.
What I can do, though, is write about how amazing the Hermitage, as a concept, and a physical place, really is. It’s hard to really get it from reading about it online; truthfully, I had to be there to appreciate all of what she’s trying to accomplish and how well she’s doing it given the limitations of apartment living.
The Black Stone Hermitage consists of many different spaces: a good many beautiful shrines, the Black Tent Temple, a Psychomanteum, an altar for meditation, and even the equipment to provide ritualized tea service.
Every square inch of the place was painstakingly planned and curated to cultivate an atmosphere of darkness, introspection, and hibernation, from the smallest accouterment to the largest piece of furniture. She lives, breathes, and exudes monasticism; she lives her service to the Gods. And the Hermitage is a rare place that has been built to serve both Them and us – though it is also her home, it is a space for our community to visit and utilize. They’re going to get something powerful there that they can’t anywhere else right now, I guarantee that.
Which is why I really, really want to see the Hermitage stay put, and why I really want to see Danica continue the work she’s doing because it is unique and it is of immense value to us as polytheists. I wish I could have stayed in Portland to take advantage of it.
But, all I can do right now is plug her Patreon – it may be the only thing that could keep the Hermitage alive as it currently exists.