We conclude the profiles of our twelve lead ministers with a look at the Leo ministry of the Artisan and lead minister Mark Bilokur, in his own words:
I was born first-generation American to parents of Eastern European heritage, which led me to feeling between worlds, between cultures, at an early age. I remember being interested in the arts for as long as I can remember. I remember drawing pictures since I was able to hold a pencil, crayon or pen.
I had various experiences through childhood and into adult life that led me to the practice, including some powerful dreams and dream-like visitations from the Horned One that echoed in waking life. When I was in grade school, I started exploring yoga and other meditative practices and discovered that, without prior teaching, I was already practicing a number of those techniques.
I’ve studied and practiced the arts in various ways since I was young, getting degrees in painting, sequential storytelling (or visual narrative, or comics), the healing arts of massage therapy and energy work (including a couple different traditions of Reiki), and studied under various people, including Dr. William E. Parker, Sharynne NicMhacha, and Christopher Penczak.
While practicing massage therapy and energy work at Unicorn Books (when they were open in Cambridge, MA), I first came into contact with Christopher Penczak, his books, and his classes. I was amazed by his teaching gifts, his ability to convey difficult and challenging information and concepts in ways that make them much simpler and easier to comprehend and understand, and impressed by the alignment of his words, his intentions and actions, his integrity and his openness.
The ministry of Leo, in the Temple of Witchcraft, is associated with the Craftsman, with the Arts. For me, Art is a means of exploring and experiencing what is, as well as what is possible. Art is a way, a means, a practice where the physical world meets the emotional, the intellectual and spiritual worlds. It seems no coincidence to me that some of the terms for Witchcraft are ‘the Art,’ ‘the Craft’ and ‘the Practice.’ We learn what is true and what is possible by doing, by practicing and perfecting our craft. In this, we are ourselves crafted.
Mark can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.