Why Start This Blog?

This blog was founded to provide a venue for my writing that didn’t fit well for another blog site I wrote for, Patheos which was a host site for discussions on religious practices. In my case as a naturalistic pagan – someone who doesn’t believe the supernatural (deities, spirits, etc.) exist, and goes about life in an earth-centered way that acknowledges that I am but one species among many in a vast network of life on this planet, being reliant on this network for our own well being. As a result I have a website that is dedicated to this endeavor, based on the philosophy I stumbled into founding in my personal life searches for meaning – Ehoah. You can read the background to that here.

I had since left Patheos, and so I moved the majority of my writings from Patheos: Paths Through The Forests, my previous blog group No Unsacred Place, and current and future writings with the Natural Pagans group, here under the Seasons & Stardust tag.

A large portion of what wanted to share and write about here when I founded it, is tied to one of my hobbies – The Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), a Living History group that focuses on pre-1600 history, being primarily medieval in focus. Hence the heraldic wolf in the logo of the site – as one of my interests in the SCA is book heraldry. All my writings pertaining to Living History will be found under The Cairn, because it is my historical cache 😉

The primary reason was to keep on top of my crafting and writing, because a prominent piece of advice for writers to get out of writing block is to keep writing to get your jive back. For the crafting side of things it adds some helpful reminders on the progress and encourages me to, you know, finish them… while at the same time show others how they can do some nifty things too! Because I love spreading the crafting bug!

Why “Canadian Mutt”?

Because I am one. For those not familiar with the term, its just a statement of being of mixed heritage – commonly a blend of various European peoples and a variety of Indigenous peoples. Often leaving the amount of each as a bit of guesswork. In my case my memere grew up in a metis community in northern Quebec, and married and settled down in Northern Ontario. Her background was hidden to prevent her kids, and therefore decendants, from experiencing discrimination, and thus I am of the assimilated. I was taught some things from the family tellings mainly in how to read the environment, but was missing a lot of cultural context that I only began to fill in in my adult years, especially since my memere’s background only began to be openly talked about after her passing. This is where I began to see the cultural mixing of my background more clearly. Metis, in that I am culturally French Canadian, raised anglophone, predominantly Irish diaspora, with some Cree and Anishinaabe background with lingering teachings handed down. It is a real mixed bag all as a result of each ancestor trying to make the best decision for their children. Thus my family was able to hide in plain sight as “white” of “French heritage” and was thus spared the discrimination,

Against the Irish – Having come over as traders in the early days of the Hudson Bay Company / Rupertland and marrying into the local populations. The stereotypes tied to being Irish were Hot Headed, lazy, drunkards, and even assumed a Whore. These assumptions that were common at the time meant that many employers were not willing to hire Irish – with storefront signage litterally stating,”Irish need not apply”;

And especially against the Indigenous peoples, for the same stereotypes to boot, but were subjected to far worse conditions. The laws not only ignored the rights of the indigenous peoples, they were shaped to eradicate them. Hence the trauma of the Reservation System and Residential Schools designed to assimilate the children, to “kill the indian in the child.”

I cannot blame my ancestors, I still lament the severing of connection to the cultures of my background and why I encourage others of non-anglo saxon background in Canada to not hide their heritage if they can do so safely. Do not become like my family and be another assimilated people, especially if you have a choice in preserving and openly celebrating your heritage. I do not want any peoples to feel ashamed of who they are and where they are from. The Canada now may not be the ideal it is presented as, but that does not mean we should not try to make it so.

One thing that could not be hidden in my family was the common occurence of red hair. The stigma of being redhaired has only recently alleviated – I grew up constantly being teased about it, but now it is no longer “hot headed”, its fetishized – uh, better but still no thanks.

Either way that is incredibly minor compared to distant cousins who could not escape the racism and have suffered in generational trauma and still suffocate under systemic racism that Canada perpetuates to this day. Something that is finally being shaken up, in living memory of being allowed to express the culture and language and the closing of the last residential school, and more with Reconiliation.

I do not propose a definitive solution for achieving full reconciliation – lots of ideas, but nothing with certainty in that it would work, not to mention the nuance all the First Nations each have in their  circumstance and what would be their ideal outcome. No one solution will suit all the First Nations – that is a given. A lot of discussion and work still needs to happen before reconciliation is reached, and much still needs to be followed through. I just hope I live to see what that looks like and will do my part in helping it along.

Coming from this background has left me many a time in the proverbial middle of discussions. Where people expect you to pick one side or another, and often am simply unable to – usually coming at it from a middle way, because how else am I to go about it?  This had made me realize that much of what I talk about revolves around this kind of situation so it felt appropriate.

My handle in my writing is Rua Lupa, being Gaelic for “red-haired” and Latin for “she-wolf”, knowingly this is a grammatical bastardization in an Anglophone order because if it was not I would keep being referred to as Lupa for short, instead of the preferred “Rua”. For those who have a tick against that sort of mangling, you may be relieved to find that I also go by Fáelán Ruadh ua Aodha (Old Irish) as an Ealdormerian SCAdian. In both cases I go by Rua/Ruadh informally.

For Canadian Politics & other Hot Topics that are occurring in or related to Canada, look under the tab “Political Barking”

All of my writings will be together under “Rua’s Rambles”

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