Blogging is by it’s very nature a sort of narcissistic activity. I mean, your assuming the whole world wants to hear your inner most thoughts and that they matter somehow. When I started this blog I really did so just to have a place to write down what I’m feeling, regardless if even one other person ever read it. Lately, I’ve been neglecting posting because I felt what I have to say isn’t important enough to be of interest. I’m meaning to remedy that.
So here is some personal miscellanea of things I’ve learned about myself on my path thus far. It’s in no particular order, just random stuff I’d like to get down before it escapes my mind. A stream of consciousness in fact. More statements of belief as it stands right now (by the time you read this will already be outdated).
- I am Pagan for better or worse. Recently I left the label behind like many others to use “Polytheist”. It didn’t really change much. People of mainstream faiths still called me Pagan when referencing my religion, and I didn’t really bother to correct them because it felt too damn pretentious. I think the moniker still has use, and like it or not it’s what were stuck with even if it it isn’t perfect. I think it’s better to just embrace it personally. I don’t always agree with Ian Corrigan, but I think he nailed it on the head in this post. Plus I hate having to give any label that requires description. Most people know what pagan means without me having to give a monologue about it. I’m cool with that.
- I am an animist. I have always been so since before I knew what the word meant. Together with Paganism, these two views fuel my spiritual practice.
- I am fiercely devotional. Devotional worship to my gods fills a large part of my personal practice. It makes me happy. I enjoy their company. I like to think they enjoy mine. I probably get more out of it then they do. I know many fellow magicians eschew this view, but I’ll always be fiercely devotional to my gods. It’s just how I’m wired. My life is better for them being in it.
- I am a magician and have to have magic in my life. This is non-negotiable. Magic has been my passion since I was 3 years old. My very first memories are of trying to craft my own magic. I’ve left faiths before solely on the basis of their lack of inclusiveness of magic. I use magic all the time in almost every aspect of my life. I would not want to live in a world without magic (I don’t know how people do it, really). I enjoy both High and Low magic and tend to engage in both depending on the need.
- I have a love/hate relationship with Druidry and all things “Celtic”. I wish this weren’t true, but it is. Revival Druidry (I stress as as opposed to Cultural Druidry or Neo-Pagan Druidry) fits a certain lock in my soul like nothing else. No matter how many times I leave (and I try often. About 3 times in the past month alone.) I’m often back the next day being drawn back in. However, no matter how much I try worshiping the Celtic gods, even though I have both Irish and Welsh ancestry, and even when I have open invitations from the gods themselves (ie the Morrigan, & Cerridwen), I feel like a cultural interloper and like a visitor on shaky ground. I try and try, but I just don’t get anything out of it. I don’t know why this is, but it is. My own gods are Greek. I feel at home with the Hellenic gods. While I know that many druidic types worship heath cultures outside the Celtic, for me personally I don’t find it works very well (kudos to those whom it does though). Thus I’ve settled on not bringing the gods into my Druidry at all, and keeping it solely animistic. For me animistic Druidry works, but it is an uneasy balance.
- In reality, even though I’m drawn to Druidry, my personal practice tends to resemble Traditional Witchcraft more than Druidry I have to admit. My actually every day practice tends to resemble Robin Artisson (sans the fanciful language) more than Philip Carr-gomm or JMG. Particularly necromancy plays a big role. I firmly believe that the heart of witchcraft is necromancy. Even interactions with gods I think may be a form of necromancy (I think a lot of gods are deified ancestors. Maybe not all, but there are quite a few).
- My primary patron is and probably always will be Hekate. However, it’s not all light and roses right now. I’m jealous of those whom I hear talk to her all the time and she’s in their life all the time, and their having great experiences, because it isn’t like that for me at all. I feel fiercely devotional to her, but she seldom “speaks” to me or otherwise makes her presence known outside of occasionally at during altar worship. I’m comforted by the fact that I hear others say this too. I don’t know if she’s just like that by nature. Others have suggested she thinks I can stand on my own two feet and don’t need the constant assurance of her presence. Still I wish we had more interaction than we do. Another possibility is that I’ve explored her surface as much as possible and to go much further I have to really dig in deep and challenge myself. I am comfortable in my relationship with her. I’m not feeling challenged at all. Maybe that’s it? This is part of the reason an extended hand from The Morrigan seems enticing, but still… it doesn’t feel right the way Hekate does and there is the whole matter of given oaths that I refuse to go back on.
- This is part of the reason I consider monoalatry to Hekate. Even though we’re not communing daily, I get the feeling in some deep part of my being that the answer is giving up all the other distractions and concentrating on what is important, digging deeper, if not permanently at least for awhile until I get through this. Truthfully, she gets 80-90% of my worship anyway. While I maintain relationship with other deities, those relationships are shallow at best. Why keep ‘em? (Although I am developing quite a fondness for Helios, a god whom I approached of my own volition). This idea of near-monoalatry comes up all the time, in meditation, in dreams, in my ever day normal consciousness. Somehow I think it’s the right way but I’ve never actually made the leap. I could see being happy with an entire practice built around the Cult of Hekate with her at it’s center and working with the gods and spirits who are associated with her. My religion would in fact… be Hekate. So whats holding me back? The knowledge that once that gate is opened all others are going to be closed. It’s part of the deal methinks.
- On a completely unrelated note, I’m giving St.Cyprian another try. This time I’m focusing solely on his pagan aspects to what appears to be great effect.
- The most intense experiences I’ve ever had with a spirit or deity is with Dionysos, to this day. He goes quiet on me for looong periods of time, but I ever have a place for him in my heart.
- I still really like Chaos Magic.
- I’m currently feeling frustrated because I don’t feel I’m making enough progress magically. I realize it’s not a race, I just feel, I don’t know, stalled somehow. The Great Work is poking me in the ass but I don’t feel like I can get to it until I figure out all of the the above. Problem is, I’ve got too much going on and not enough time to attend to it all properly. I’m aware that I need to downsize. I’ve gotten too broad and scattered. I’m a big fan of the phrase “Hold on tightly and let go lightly”. But what to let go? Some serious thinking needs to be done before I can move on. Because, you know, I don’t think about it enough, right?
- As you can see, not much has really changed with me
Ok, that was actually all very helpful to me to get it all written down.