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Thread: Things to do

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    Things to do

    So, this is going to come off as a strange question, and I honestly think it's a bit inappropriate for me to be asking at all, but here's the deal:
    So, I've been poking around with paganism since high school, and now I finally have a desire to take my religion seriously. I read a lot, and I practice exercises in the books... I guess I'm not really sure how to coherently word this. I don't really have a direction in my practice, and it's not for lack of focus. I just don't know what to do.

    I don't really practice a lot of magic, aside from folkish stuff (I'm not super big on formalities and have found ritual magic to be really awkward for me). Although, I am planning on going a little deeper with studying magic. However, I really don't see a lot of reason to use it as much as most people do.

    And then, I don't have a "patron diety" or anything. I don't really follow a pantheon of Gods. It's not that I don't think they're real, it's just that I came from a Christian/Catholic upbringing, and I want to explore spirituality within myself before reaching out to any deity. In addition, I am quite shy, and really just want to research them before talking to them.

    So... I'm not into rituals (at least super formal ones), don't really honor any deities, don't really use a lot of magic... So I guess I'm just lost? I feel like I'm copping out asking for suggestions on the internet for things to do as a pagan, but honestly I don't know where to go. I have no teacher or group to go to, so I've kind of been left to fend for myself as far as spirituality goes. Which is fine, I'm kind of the mad scientist type who enjoys experimenting, but I keep getting stuck in ruts.



    So this was like... half venting half questioning... So you can overlook the venting part. Anyone got any suggestions for me? Like, things I can look at (websites... books....) or things I could do?
    Last edited by sunflower47; 12 Apr 2012 at 04:18 PM. Reason: spelling mistake... probably only one of a few.

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    Re: Things to do

    Quote Originally Posted by sunflower47 View Post
    This is actually more normal than you'd think. There's a LOT of stuff about ritual out there, tons of magic - not so much about working with idiots or dealing with hyper kids or all the other realities of life.

    You might want to look at www.flamekeeping.org (disclaimer, my work) and see if anything there sparks any ideas.

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    Re: Things to do

    Quote Originally Posted by sunflower47 View Post
    So, this is going to come off as a strange question, and I honestly think it's a bit inappropriate for me to be asking at all,
    It is far from inappropriate and infact a fairly common question It can be tough to really decide how to begin and where to even start without feeling like you are diving into the deep end and unsure if you even know how to swim yet lol

    I think your lack of direction may stem from that you are unsure what it is you do believe yet. You need a solid foundation before you can build anything. Two things helped me alot, one reading about many different paths. & two, actually taking time to sit myself down and write about what I believed. I wrote it all up as if I was trying to explain it to someone else. It took me a while, months and I still went back and changed things as I went along. I asked myself the basic questions and went from there- what is god? Polytheism, pantheism, etc... alot of research may be needed but it is well worth it. Did I believe in an afterlife, if so what? How does the universe work, why do things happen? etc... fill in what you can and go from there.

    Writing, journaling, taking notes helped me alot there.

    What if any specific paths seem to interest you? Any pantheons or you don't need any as well simple god or goddess or divine cosmic whatever is ok too. there are even atheist and agnostic witches.

    You also do not need formal rituals. there are many different ways and not everyone can walk the same path. There is also kitchen witchcraft, folk magic, candle magic. Focus more on what does interest you. What types of things have you done so far and what is your intent with wanting to do magic?


    Some simple things you can do would be to set up a very simple altar. It doesn't need to be to any specific deity or any at all maybe just to nature or as a sacred space to put your focus into. With a single candle to light or some incense or oils. You can take time each day to meditate there or just think/journal on things. Practice grounding and centering. Do you have interest in the moon or sabbats?

    I really like the site: http://gleewood.org/seeking/
    The owner of the site is a member here even. It has alot of good info to start off.
    ♥ I walk in the shadow of the moon, I dance to the pulse of the earth. ♥

    My Blog....`http://moonkissedraven.blogspot.com/

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    Quote Originally Posted by sunflower47 View Post
    Anyone got any suggestions for me? Like, things I can look at (websites... books....) or things I could do?
    As someone else already said, it would probably be helpful for you to figure out the basics of what you believe and what you're looking for in your religion.

    If you're not big on formal ritual -- and lots of us aren't -- what *do* you want to do in terms of religious activities? Is nature a source of spirituality for you? Do you pray? If so, to whom? Are you looking for a community that shares a structured practice or do you prefer to maker it up on your own a you go? Are you interested in the myths of any particular culture that could provide a starting point for you (e.g., Celtic, Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Norse, etc.)?

    Most of all, when you refer to yourself as "pagan", what do you mean by that?

    ~ Aster
    "The status is not quo." ~ Dr. Horrible


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    Re: Things to do

    Quote Originally Posted by caelestisraven View Post
    It is far from inappropriate and infact a fairly common question It can be tough to really decide how to begin and where to even start without feeling like you are diving into the deep end and unsure if you even know how to swim yet lol

    I think your lack of direction may stem from that you are unsure what it is you do believe yet. You need a solid foundation before you can build anything. Two things helped me alot, one reading about many different paths. & two, actually taking time to sit myself down and write about what I believed. I wrote it all up as if I was trying to explain it to someone else. It took me a while, months and I still went back and changed things as I went along. I asked myself the basic questions and went from there- what is god? Polytheism, pantheism, etc... alot of research may be needed but it is well worth it. Did I believe in an afterlife, if so what? How does the universe work, why do things happen? etc... fill in what you can and go from there.

    Writing, journaling, taking notes helped me alot there.

    What if any specific paths seem to interest you? Any pantheons or you don't need any as well simple god or goddess or divine cosmic whatever is ok too. there are even atheist and agnostic witches.

    You also do not need formal rituals. there are many different ways and not everyone can walk the same path. There is also kitchen witchcraft, folk magic, candle magic. Focus more on what does interest you. What types of things have you done so far and what is your intent with wanting to do magic?


    Some simple things you can do would be to set up a very simple altar. It doesn't need to be to any specific deity or any at all maybe just to nature or as a sacred space to put your focus into. With a single candle to light or some incense or oils. You can take time each day to meditate there or just think/journal on things. Practice grounding and centering. Do you have interest in the moon or sabbats?

    I really like the site: http://gleewood.org/seeking/
    The owner of the site is a member here even. It has alot of good info to start off.
    Just wanted to say, I've been doing a lot of this myself lately and have found it immensely helpful. I've also become very interested in Flame Keeping because, for me, this is at the heart of it -- finding myself, knowing who and what I am, and where I fit in the grand scale of things.

    Don't worry about jumping into formal ritual or magick. That was part of my problem when I first got started. Everything was OOH SHINY! and I bogged myself down with too many formalities and not enough foundation. You will find your feet, hon, but it'll take some time. Best of luck on your path.

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    Re: Things to do

    Quote Originally Posted by Aster Breo View Post
    As someone else already said, it would probably be helpful for you to figure out the basics of what you believe and what you're looking for in your religion.

    If you're not big on formal ritual -- and lots of us aren't -- what *do* you want to do in terms of religious activities? Is nature a source of spirituality for you? Do you pray? If so, to whom? Are you looking for a community that shares a structured practice or do you prefer to maker it up on your own a you go? Are you interested in the myths of any particular culture that could provide a starting point for you (e.g., Celtic, Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Norse, etc.)?

    Most of all, when you refer to yourself as "pagan", what do you mean by that?

    ~ Aster
    Ok, I wanted to reply to all of you... but apparently I have to quote somebody. First of all... thank you for the suggestions and websites. So, as far as keeping a journal and reading up on different paths, I've been doing that for years. I'm pretty sure everything I know comes from books, and I'm not just talking about religion. I read and write a lot.
    I would say I have a general belief on the nature of creation and the universe. This is a problem for me, because I'm very interested in many different Gods, but I don't jive with that path's theory on creation, and I don't know if it's ok to worship a God if I don't subscribe to the entire mythos. I would like to think that Gods are individual entities and not archetypes, but then I have no experience with them so I can't so for sure. I just believe that everything came from one source, and that this source isn't a person, it's just energy (intelligent energy, to be specific). I don't try to dwell on the details, because I don't think it's possible to know all those details. I just believe that we come from the source and go there when we die.

    As far as paths: I've read a little on Druidry, Discordianism, lots of things on folk magic (currently looking for sources on Italian Folk magic), and currently am reading a book on Norse Mythology. I enjoy reading Greek mythology, because I think it's romantic and interesting, and I enjoy Norse Mythology a lot because I like that not all the Gods are totally perfect (IMO).

    And as far as what kind of magic I like to do: I mostly just work with herbs, oils, and crystals. I want to study elemental magic. I like working with tangible things in addition to energy. Mostly, the magic is for general health, and for gardening, because despite my best efforts I still seem to have a black thumb. I could see myself making crafty items or just working in my home as part of my spiritual practice. The only catch is, I haven't had a consistent home for a while now, so that dream won't be realized for a while. I'm also very, very interested in herbalism. I tend not to lump that with magic though because I float on the biomedical side of the subject. I could see myself energizing a plant before I use it though.

    Let's see... I enjoy the seasons, and would love to celebrate them more... I guess I like the moon, but then I've always had a fascination with the night sky. I hope this clears up my question... thanks again!

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    Re: Things to do

    Quote Originally Posted by caelestisraven View Post
    I really like the site: http://gleewood.org/seeking/
    The owner of the site is a member here even. It has alot of good info to start off.
    I did not know of this site. Thank you for putting it out there.

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    Re: Things to do

    Quote Originally Posted by sunflower47 View Post
    ... I would say I have a general belief on the nature of creation and the universe. This is a problem for me, because I'm very interested in many different Gods, but I don't jive with that path's theory on creation, and I don't know if it's ok to worship a God if I don't subscribe to the entire mythos. I would like to think that Gods are individual entities and not archetypes, but then I have no experience with them so I can't so for sure. I just believe that everything came from one source, and that this source isn't a person, it's just energy (intelligent energy, to be specific). I don't try to dwell on the details, because I don't think it's possible to know all those details. I just believe that we come from the source and go there when we die.
    I know there are folks here who would disagree with me on this, and that's perfectly fine, but from a personal POV, I don't think it matters if you agree or even like *all* aspects of a particular path.

    For a long time I described myself as Wiccan -- and in many ways I still am -- but I never adhered to the idea of the Lord and Lady, not even as archetypes. It just wasn't for me because I didn't feel it in my heart and soul. Now, however, after many years, I'm feeling a calling to the goddess Brighid. It's a new and exciting experience for me.

    Brighid isn't exclusive in Wicca, or excluded out of it. It's just something I feel. At the same time, tho, I still feel very compelled and attracted to other aspects of Wicca, such as the reverence for nature and the celebration of the seasons. I love the balance that's often found in Wicca. It's just that Brighid is now a new layer for me to add to my spiritual path.

    There are others who feel they absolutely *MUST* follow every aspect of their chosen path, down to the tiniest detail. And that's fine. I figure whatever works for everyone so long as it doesn't intrude upon others. Ultimately a person must do what they feel is best for them. If mixing and matching is what feels best for you, then I would go for it. If, on the other hand, you feel more compelled to follow a stricter path, then by all means do so.

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    Quote Originally Posted by earth_dragon View Post
    I know there are folks here who would disagree with me on this, and that's perfectly fine, but from a personal POV, I don't think it matters if you agree or even like *all* aspects of a particular path.
    Just to expand a bit on this idea, there a lots and lots of pagans who are building their own paths for this very reason.

    F'ex, as I've detailed in other threads, I'm dedicated to Brighid and I value historical accuracy very highly. But I'm not a Celtic recon or a druid. I'm not trying to follow a recon or druid path because there are parts of those that just don't resonate with or work for me. For instance, I acknowledge but do not worship other gods, at Brighid's specific request. Nor do I do any magic, for the same reason.

    I'm creating my own practice so every aspect of my path will be intentionally crafted to align with the work Brighid gives me and with my beliefs and goals.

    ~ Aster
    "The status is not quo." ~ Dr. Horrible


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    Re: Things to do

    Quote Originally Posted by sunflower47 View Post
    So this was like... half venting half questioning... So you can overlook the venting part. Anyone got any suggestions for me? Like, things I can look at (websites... books....) or things I could do?
    I started out the same way. I would start reading or researching one thing at a time. Something universal like herbs, runes, cards. Herbs is a good one I think. Start reading online or in books the various pantheons and myths. I found my goddess that way. Start mediation, ground and centering and maybe an altar. Sort of set up your space. Study is as productive as practice sometimes.

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