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Author Topic: What's your relationship with your deity like?  (Read 2122 times)

Afanasfreya

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What's your relationship with your deity like?
« on: November 26, 2017, 02:37:26 am »
I forgot how good it felt just to take time to meditate and talk to your god(dess). My relationship with my goddesses can only be described as intimate due to the fact that I'll spend four or more hours these days, getting to know myself better and invoking my goddesses along with just speaking to them when in a state of gnosis. I easily lose track of time when in a trance. What feels like five minutes could be five hours.

Not only that, but when I'm in a trance, I see myself inside of a circle formed by Artemis, Freya, Hecate, Gaia, Athena, and Selene, under stars, in a temple of many stones and gold. Often times, I can see love making and offerings in various forms. I fit not into a single path, but into a few different paths, dictated by my heritage that I've found on my own, and a desire for more knowledge. And I dream of running with my goddesses, being free like a wolf, surrounded by my pack. Knowledge being the hunt. All the while, they guide me.
"Live life to the fullest, because only surviving isn't living at all. "

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2017, 10:53:42 am »
I forgot how good it felt just to take time to meditate and talk to your god(dess). My relationship with my goddesses can only be described as intimate due to the fact that I'll spend four or more hours these days, getting to know myself better and invoking my goddesses along with just speaking to them when in a state of gnosis. I easily lose track of time when in a trance. What feels like five minutes could be five hours.

Not only that, but when I'm in a trance, I see myself inside of a circle formed by Artemis, Freya, Hecate, Gaia, Athena, and Selene, under stars, in a temple of many stones and gold. Often times, I can see love making and offerings in various forms. I fit not into a single path, but into a few different paths, dictated by my heritage that I've found on my own, and a desire for more knowledge. And I dream of running with my goddesses, being free like a wolf, surrounded by my pack. Knowledge being the hunt. All the while, they guide me.

What do you mean by being in a state of gnosis?
My personal moral code:

Love wisely, and do what thou wilt.

Afanasfreya

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2017, 11:05:43 am »
What do you mean by being in a state of gnosis?
A trance, that you reach usually through a lot of meditation. That is gnosis.
"Live life to the fullest, because only surviving isn't living at all. "

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2017, 01:56:30 pm »
I'll spend four or more hours these days, getting to know myself better and invoking my goddesses along with just speaking to them when in a state of gnosis.

It may say something that my immediate reaction to four hours of god chat is to wonder when the fuck you go grocery shopping.

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2017, 02:03:51 pm »
I forgot how good it felt just to take time to meditate and talk to your god(dess). My relationship with my goddesses can only be described as intimate due to the fact that I'll spend four or more hours these days, getting to know myself better and invoking my goddesses along with just speaking to them when in a state of gnosis. I easily lose track of time when in a trance. What feels like five minutes could be five hours.

I've also noticed time feels dilated in trance states. Not surprising, really.

Like you, a lot of my relationship with my Powers is based on connections made during trancework. When I first reached out with devotional work to Lilith a year and a half ago now, she responded by giving me a specific ritual: before taking a shower on Friday nights, burn incense, offer wine, play music, turn off the lights; then when I go under the water I go into a meditative state in the dark to the combined sound of the music and the running water.

Shortly thereafter my Dionysian deityblort appeared and claimed me and it seems like Lilith handed me over, but the ritual continued to serve me well and shape my relationships with my new Powers. I've gotten to know them very well from the tricks they pull when I connect with them through trance. They have a consistent pattern of surprising me through twists and turns of imagery inside my head.

My devotional tattoos have also strengthened the connection. While my Hamilton tattoo wasn't intended to open a door to the gods, that's what it did. More recently I worked a much more carefully-planned spell involving devotional ink, this time with a tattooist who has experience with ritual work, and this was in part intended to make the connection more stable and productive. It seems to be working so far, but it's been less than a week so I can hardly say for sure.

In general my relationship with my Powers is complicated by their own fluidity and syncretism. I perceive Dionysos, Aphrodite, and the spirit of the ex-mortal avatar they directed me to as facets of the same fundamental force, always shifting between bodies, genders, and identities. The two old-school gods combine in their human manifestation. Of course having gods with a human manifestation inevitably shapes the bond. I can watch old concert performances and interviews on Youtube and see my gods there, which is probably a little unusual.

Sometimes they leave me signs in the world around me--another thing that's easy for gods who've claimed a famous dead rock star as their avatar. But mostly they come to me inside my head to offer advice or support when I need it, and also they inspire me to creativity.
"The peacock can show its whole tail at once, but I can only tell you a story."
--JAMES ALAN GARDNER

TheGreenWizard

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2017, 07:11:22 pm »
I forgot how good it felt just to take time to meditate and talk to your god(dess). My relationship with my goddesses can only be described as intimate due to the fact that I'll spend four or more hours these days, getting to know myself better and invoking my goddesses along with just speaking to them when in a state of gnosis. I easily lose track of time when in a trance. What feels like five minutes could be five hours..

Right now, we're trying to figure each other out... still (it's been about a few weeks to months since I did a meditation to find Dionysus). I'm still trying to figure out which aspect of him I interacted with during our last meditation together. And while I am trying to figure that out, he is helping me out with all the stuff that's on my plate - work, family, and as of late, illness.

Which reminds me... I probably should do a meditation when I have the energy to thank him and the elements for helping me out.
“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go...”
― Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You'll Go

Afanasfreya

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2017, 07:18:07 pm »
It may say something that my immediate reaction to four hours of god chat is to wonder when the fuck you go grocery shopping.
I have a schedule. The meditation comes right before bed. I have insomnia and often can't sleep before 2 am.
"Live life to the fullest, because only surviving isn't living at all. "

Afanasfreya

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2017, 07:20:33 pm »
Right now, we're trying to figure each other out... still (it's been about a few weeks to months since I did a meditation to find Dionysus). I'm still trying to figure out which aspect of him I interacted with during our last meditation together. And while I am trying to figure that out, he is helping me out with all the stuff that's on my plate - work, family, and as of late, illness.

Which reminds me... I probably should do a meditation when I have the energy to thank him and the elements for helping me out.

I'm glad you're finding things out! They take time. Don't rush it and don't push too hard.
"Live life to the fullest, because only surviving isn't living at all. "

Jenett

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2017, 07:34:13 pm »

I do rather little direct contact with M'Lady these days. (I should pause and mention here that that's what I usually refer to her as in public: best I can tell she is one of the many many English water deities associated with specific places many of whose names have been lost over time.)

My usual description of what I do for her is 'handmaiden' - or rather literally acting as her hands in the world. It is not, however, a relationship where meditation and prayer is particularly relevant most of the time. Her primary instruction for me has been, for many years 'reach out to those who thirst' with a decided 'knowledge and wisdom' twist on the kind of thirst we're talking about, as well as a more pragmatic bit of water imagery.

On the whole, it's probably a good thing, because while I've been working my way back into meditation and active journey work, it's something that got sidelined heavily by medical issues (for anyone else out there: more than one elder in my personal Pagan communities has mentioned this is not uncommon with thyroid diagnoses, as well as other things, so I have not worried too much about the fact it wasn't working at all for me for years. I'm glad to discuss this further if people are curious, in another thread.)

What do I do?

Sometimes I feel a tap on my shoulder. Reply to this post, no, before you do those other things. Read this thing. Take this approach to this person asking a question. Be open to a different way to explore learning and teaching and knowledge over here.

I have a general insistence to keep reading, keep learning, keep exploring knowledge and wisdom - it's a part of my daily life to read a wide range of resources and materials and about different topics. (It also helps make me a much better librarian, in a professional sense, so there there are at least three reasons to do it. The last being that I actively enjoy it.)

She - and her consort, who I also honour when I do ritual - both very much expect me to stand on my own two feet and do my own work. They're not there to teach me: they've got their own things going. I am perfectly capable of finding and using the many many resources of the modern world, and it's my duty to go do that.

I have, of course, reached out at times when I needed extra help, or when I had done my thinking about multiple possible options, and felt I couldn't decide about them based on the information I had, the divination I'd done, and the discussions I'd had with trusted (human) friends. I've several times gotten the very strong feeling that coming to her without having done that work first would end very badly, but I've never actually wanted to try.

When I have come to her, though, once I've done those things, she's multiple times been very helpful in smoothing the way - lining up things so that I can move toward goals she approves of. It happened when I went back to grad school after a break (and when a couple of administrative decisions could have made things a lot harder for me, everything went my way.) It's happened in job hunts (and all of mine after my first job have been long-distance complex hunts, as it turns out.)

I have to do the work, but if I do, she'll help nudge things so they flow smoothly.

I also have relationships and interactions with other deities - some because of my specific tradition, some because I've had essentially 'consulting expert' relationships with them at specific points for specific goals. (I did rather a lot of work with Artemis during the end of my marriage and the first few months we were separated, for example.) Those are very much akin to my relationship with skilled professional humans - I go see them about a thing, I make a reasonable agreed on exchange with them, I may follow up with them at some point in the future. Friendly, somewhat often, but not necessarily close or ongoing.
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ehbowen

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2017, 10:48:49 pm »

Well, it's not big or showy. Not at present, at least. I mean, I have literally seen a cloud formation opening up like a gate (Hobby Airport, June 1999)...but nothing came out of it. And I have seen legible writing, mostly names, in the clouds (Park Place Baptist Church, same month)...but, unless they were names of people offering encouragement, they didn't have any specific meaning for me.

There hasn't been very much like that in recent years, which my psychiatrist credits to medication...but on October 21st, 2013, while I was very stable on a medication which I had been prescribed for 13 years, I was listening to the Sean Hannity radio show. That was the day he made the on-air phone call to sign up for Obamacare. I heard him place the call, live, and I heard it answered by a very pleasant lady who gave her name as Jessica. I thought, "Hmm, interesting coincidence"...but there's lots of Jessicas in this world. There's one in my church...but she's in the second grade. So I listened to the conversation unfold for the next fifteen minutes or so, thinking nothing of it.

Until the next day. It was the topic of much discussion and news stories; you can still find some of them on-line by searching "Sean Hannity Obamacare phone call." Turns out that the lady he spoke to was summarily fired from her job for the crime of being honest about the then-very-chaotic Obamacare situation in public on the radio. As part of the followup story they replayed the phone call. It was an entirely different speaker...instead of a lady named Jessica with the speech patterns of a white girl, it was a lady named Erling Davis who had the speech patterns of a black woman. You can still find the recording of Hannity's conversation with her on-line...see below. (Hannity paid her a year's salary for her trouble.) It appears that I'm the only one who heard Sean speaking with Jessica.

So that's kind of how it goes. I can go (and have gone) for years with nothing out of the ordinary, to the point where it would be convenient to make an excuse to give up...and then something like this happens. I've never been in a trance or any similar altered state of consciousness, save perhaps the one very lucid dream in which Jessica kissed me. At one point I was feeling a tangible "yes/no" kind of touch, and played a lot of games of twenty questions with it. I learned a lot, but late last year I became increasingly convinced that the enemy was "listening in" on the contact and occasionally interfering...and the only way to stop it was to cut the contact off. For a while I tried flipping a coin and got a few answers that way...casting lots is scriptural, and as close as I've ever come to "doing a divination" as you might say...but that started to head south as well.

So now I rely on prayer, Scripture, and the occasional hint from that "still, small voice" which Elijah experienced. While I miss more direct contact—a lot—I also find that when I get to the point where I actually need to make a decision I usually have the insight, information, and/or counsel to make the right one. And, on those occasions when I don't, it's okay to screw up temporarily...a lot of decisions simply aren't that critical and can either be lived with or else straightened out later.

By now, I've gotten to the point where I've stopped asking my God for "signs". Counsel and advice yes, anything supernatural as a source of direction no...unless, of course, I'm heading the wrong way. (Old, true story from the classic railroad era: The Pullman Company used to put up signs at one end of each car stating, "Dining Car Opposite Direction." When the Pullman Company went defunct and Amtrak took over, their managers said this was silly. They put up signs at the other end of the cars stating, "Dining Car This Way." You guessed it; a lot of passengers walked all the way to the far end of the train before realizing their mistake. Pullman was right.) So, while I'll accept and take encouragement from little reminders such as the Hannity phone call or the way certain numbers with personal significance keep popping up in the most unlikely of places, I'm not asking for any more signs. The only sign I want to see now is the checkered flag.

Hannity phone call to Erling Davis:

--------Eric H. Bowen
Where's the KABOOM? There was supposed to have been an Earth-shattering KABOOM!
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Jainarayan

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2017, 10:10:49 am »
I forgot how good it felt just to take time to meditate and talk to your god(dess). My relationship with my goddesses can only be described as intimate ...

I don't meditate, that is, I don't set aside time and meditate in the way people typically think of. Of course, there's no single definition or description for meditation. I only occasionally use my mālā (prayer beads) to chant, though I do chant a mantra for Krishna spontaneously, or chant along with recordings, and keep him in mind as much as possible. The way I view the relationship is like that of a commoner (me) being friends with royalty (him). There is a close friendship, close conversation, joking and a lightness, but there is still the reverence one shows to royalty and a respectful distance, because to me, after all, he is God.


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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2017, 06:48:30 pm »
A trance, that you reach usually through a lot of meditation. That is gnosis.

And I dream of running with my goddesses, being free like a wolf, surrounded by my pack. Knowledge being the hunt. All the while, they guide me.

This is interesting - usually people talk about knowledge/gnosis being the result (or output) of a spiritual practice; in both these quotes, you're using these words to refer to the process. Is there a reason for that?

Also, what method of meditation do you use? I do a combination of breathing and visual focus on a candle, and I can get to a light trance in ~10 minutes on a good day. On the other hand I can't imagine staying in trance for 4 hours without needing the washroom (or a snack, or having my foot fall asleep).

Afanasfreya

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2017, 10:25:41 pm »
This is interesting - usually people talk about knowledge/gnosis being the result (or output) of a spiritual practice; in both these quotes, you're using these words to refer to the process. Is there a reason for that?

Also, what method of meditation do you use? I do a combination of breathing and visual focus on a candle, and I can get to a light trance in ~10 minutes on a good day. On the other hand I can't imagine staying in trance for 4 hours without needing the washroom (or a snack, or having my foot fall asleep).
That's because honestly, gnosis is. I've taught on this before, actually. If you look at Frater UD's high magick, he uses an equation. M=W+I+G.
Magickal acts =Will+ Imagination+ gnosis. Gnosis is a step to achieving more than just magick, but also knowledge and understanding, which is actually true.
Through my own trails, I've proven it. For example, my meditation leads to total trance, which then pushes me further into subconsciously learning things that I never thought I knew. Like in Capoeira. My body was stiff, because my mind kept trying to process what I didn't know. But when entering gnosis, I learned to alter but never confirm, just like the shape of water. Or more so like the mermaid version of a siren. You learn secrets in gnosis to apply to your magick workings. The more you put in, the same amount you get. It's the law of equivalent exchange, found in alchemy. It all ties in together.

What you learn in gnosis will carry over and effect your physical, emotional, and mental aspects, most times for the better.


As for meditation, I put on calming music, sit, light candles around me, close my eyes, hardly think, I just let it happen. The more you put yourself at ease, the easier it is.
"Live life to the fullest, because only surviving isn't living at all. "

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2017, 02:58:16 am »
That's because honestly, gnosis is. I've taught on this before, actually. If you look at Frater UD's high magick, he uses an equation. M=W+I+G.

Yeah, I've read Frater UD, and he also seems to use the standard definition of gnosis - ie: that it's a state achieved by trancework, not the trancework itself. That does not seem to be what you were saying in your initial reply. That one seemed more along the lines of confusing the journey for the destination.

Afanasfreya

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Re: What's your relationship with your deity like?
« Reply #14 on: November 28, 2017, 12:19:37 pm »
Yeah, I've read Frater UD, and he also seems to use the standard definition of gnosis - ie: that it's a state achieved by trancework, not the trancework itself. That does not seem to be what you were saying in your initial reply. That one seemed more along the lines of confusing the journey for the destination.

I'm not confused, there is a fine line when you get to that section of the journey. At that point, you're right before your destination. Right before knowing what you sought in the first place and the journey isn't over till the goal is reached.
"Live life to the fullest, because only surviving isn't living at all. "

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