Speak not of such things for they frighten me!

The following questions come from The Reverend Boy:

If I remember correctly, I believe you said you were a pagan or Wiccan. What about that faith / spirituality gives you fulfilment? Do you have a community with whom to share your experiences?

This is a great question in that it really makes me think. More importantly, it challenges me to express in words things that often defy description. And of course, it also forces me to talk about some things that might cause some of my friends to worry and even consider calling a mental health professional — or worse, an exorcist.

I’d say that my fulfillment from my spirituality is due to two closely related themes. The first is the tendency of Pagan spirituality to celebrate, cherish, and even honor this life. The second theme is the close and curious (if sometimes frustrating and nerve-wracking) relationship I have with Freyja.

Like I said, these two things are quite intertwined, because Freyja is all about life and its joys and sorrows. She is fascinated by people and social settings. There’s been more than one time that I’ve been at a gathering of friends at a coffee shop, dining with friends at a restaurant, or otherwise out and about with other people, and the next thing I knew, she was there with me, taking it all in. She’s fascinated (and sometimes disgusted, I grant you) by how people interact with each other and all kinds of details of my life and the lives of those around me. And seeing it all from her perspective in those moments turns even the most “mundane” experiences into moments of awe and contemplation.

The fact that she’s there at a moment’s notice in any situation is also incredible to me. It creates a very conversational relationship between the two of us. Talking to her is not something that’s limited to rituals (though rituals are wonderful and important things as well), but something that can come at any moment. It’s a comforting and casual thing. Well, okay, it does get annoying at times, like when she pipes up about my eating habbits. But in the end, it’s all worth it.

I’m also finding lately that my faith is becoming very community-oriented. I find myself thinking in terms of what I can do to help others, even in the smallest ways imaginable. To me, even building community is becoming and important way. And my Pagan faith gives me ways to go about helping in this manner (and the occasional kick to keep moving in that direction). And again, that’s all about celebrating life, not just as an indivdiaul, but as a group of individuals.

I’m going to hold off on talking about my spiritual community (though I will point to a couple of previous posts on that particular subject. But I have more on that topic brewing in my mind. So I want to give it a bit more time to percolate before I dump it out into the blogosphere.

Oh, and for anyone wondering, the title of this post is a paraphrase of the response that a witch was supposed to give whenever the subject of witchcraft came up, according to the Ardanes.

6 thoughts on “Speak not of such things for they frighten me!”

  1. Wow you’ve been busy on the posting front. I’m trying to keep up!

    I like, too, religions that put more emphasis on celebrating this life. I so tired of all the end-times garbage in Christian circles. “Oh it doesn’t matter how we treat the environment, Jesus is coming real soon”. Which, of course begs to be argued with, considering Jesus has been coming back “real soon” for over 2000 years. If one even believes that eschatology. In any case, it’s used as an excuse…I used to be in prayer groups where we prayed for Jesus to return and save us from this life full of sin and heathens…and I fully repent from such behavior.

  2. Thanks, Erin. This has actually been a fun exercise for me, so far. I’m doing the same thing on three different blogs. So far, I have written a total of thirteen posts in response to various questions. And to think, it’s only been a little over twenty four hours!

  3. Thanks for the great insights.

    They are not entirely dissimilar to what a Pentecostal or Charismatic may experiences as they try to sense the presence of God and the Holy Spirit working even in what we may call ordinary things.

  4. Oh, and glad to know I’ve made you think. That means I’m doing a good job at being an Episcopalian. 😉 I would be interested to know more about your community of faith when you feel so inclined. Paganism seems to me as very individual and not a regular gathering of community (where one exists … i realize that unless you live in an urban or suburban setting the chances of being in community are diddly / squat), except perhaps to mark the seasons.

    That sacred lust thing you mentioned in a post somewhere too … that’s something else to explore

  5. I’m glad you enjoyed what I wrote, RevBoy. I agree that there are certain similarities between what I talked about and the experiences of some Pentecostal or Charismatic Christians. I don’t know if you’re aware of it, but I attended a Charismatic church during my college years. Of course, many from the Baptist church of my childhood would probably point to that fact as one of the early signs that I was “going astray.” 😉

    As for Pagan community, I’ll simply note that there are probably more opportunities for communal activities than you might first expect. Of course, a lot of those activities don’t necessarily involve explicit religious observances.

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