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Author Topic: Are your gods/deities real?  (Read 515 times)

jinx

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Are your gods/deities real?
« on: June 26, 2020, 04:14:53 am »
If I practice magic and choose a deity but absolutely dont know what I truly believe regarding the path im using (chaos, satanism, eclecticism), only that I must brainwash myself in order to use the Power of Beleif / Prayer - what is this called? A sort of agnosticism in paganism? Usually I complete the "spell" and jump back to my Satanic philosophy.
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist? Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal? A sort of temporary self brainwash in the same vain as chaos magick.

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ehbowen

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2020, 04:30:02 am »
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist? Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal? A sort of temporary self brainwash in the same vain as chaos magick.

Define "real".

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ehbowen

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2020, 05:22:48 am »
Define "real".

Sorry, not meaning to be snarky (Well, not too much... ;)). But it's a decent philosophical question: What, ultimately, is reality? And by whose definition? The Materialists...if you can't see, touch, hear, or measure it it's not 'real'? Who died and made them god?

True story: Twenty-one years ago, almost exactly, I was going through a spiritual upheaval. I went to church one Sunday; I remember it vividly. I sang in the choir; I even remember the exact anthem which the choir sung that week: "We've Come To Bless Your Name." I also remember the pastor's sermon and something of personal import which happened during it.

Some time later (a couple of months) I obtained an audio recording of that week's service. The choir anthem was there, and my voice was on it...but it wasn't that song. It was, "We Can't Have Church (Until the Holy Ghost Shows Up)." And the pastor's sermon was on the same general topic and Bible verse, but the event which had personal meaning for me during the sermon was not there.

One Sunday, one service...two realities. I was not and am not misremembering events; I am a singer, I knew both of these songs, there is no possibility whatsoever that I am confusing these events. There were two different "time tracks"; I experienced one and, As Far As I Know, everyone else experienced the other.

And this was not an isolated occurrence, although it is a rare one. There was another service at a different church, some seven or eight years later, where one member posted the end of the service (and his trumpet performance) on YouTube that very same day. There were small but significant differences from what I clearly remembered from just a couple of hours earlier. Again, no possibility that I am confusing things; the memory was too fresh and the service was too important to me.

I believe that I've met God (And her Father, but that's another matter entirely...). We spoke for two hours. I'll never forget that day; she's cute (And, quite possibly, eligible?  ;)). But if you had surveillance camera footage of that day (and Disney just might), it's quite possible that it would show a sequence of events entirely different than the one I remember so clearly from twenty-six years ago. Does that mean that what happened to me was not 'real?' Or is it just Something That Gods Do?



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Where's the KABOOM? There was supposed to have been an Earth-shattering KABOOM!

Ashmire

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2020, 11:24:45 am »
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist? Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal? A sort of temporary self brainwash in the same vain as chaos magick.

I started with something like that, I guess... Just kind of "If this is a psychological trick on myself, it's a harmless one that makes me feel better".  But eventually enough strong results were there to convince me it's not just me, even if I can't prove it to anyone else.  I find that writing such remarkable occurrences down to refer back to them when I'm feeling down about myself and my path is a useful practice.

Morag

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2020, 03:22:29 pm »
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist?

When I go to the grocery store and ask someone in the produce section if they have any organic sweet potatoes, I don't spend time wondering if that person truly exists. It's irrelevant to my interaction with them.

At some point, I realized it wasn't worth wondering if the gods I met were real or just figments of my imagination. The human brain can't tell the difference, so instead of getting caught up in what if this is all imagined and I'm not REALLY eating sweet potatoes?? I'm just going to eat the sweet potatoes and enjoy them.

So it has nothing to do with belief, which I think is stagnation anyway. (Ideas are more flexible than beliefs.) I interact with the world as it presents itself to me. I check in to make sure I'm not hurting myself or other people (even if they might all be figments of my imagination, because I don't want to be the person who hurts others, real or not).

In short, I try to treat others how I want to be treated. As if I exist.
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PerditaPickle

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2020, 08:52:22 pm »
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist? Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal?

I know almost nothing of chaos magic, and I don't follow a path which involves deities, at least for the moment - but I am aware that some folks view deities as archetypes.

"If this is a psychological trick on myself, it's a harmless one that makes me feel better".

This makes me think about how I'm a great believer in the placebo effect.

Sorry this was brief, but it's late here - I'll try to revisit soon with more input

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Altair

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2020, 09:15:08 pm »
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist? Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal? A sort of temporary self brainwash in the same vain as chaos magick.

I don't take my gods literally. I acknowledge that my gods are largely metaphoric, my own limited human mind's attempt to wrap itself around forces that run through us and around us that are so vast that they defy human comprehension. Those forces are real; my attempt to grapple with their existence (deification) is imperfect, but useful mental shorthand, granting me some insight into the nature of these forces and my relationship to them.

I also admit the possibility that thought may be so integral to the workings of the universe, the power of thought so great, that merely by conceiving of these forces as these deities, they may in fact differentiate into these forms and come into being.
The first song sets the wheel in motion / The second is a song of love / The third song tells of Her devotion / The fourth cries joy from the sky above
The fifth song binds our fate to silence / and bids us live each moment well / The sixth unleashes rage and violence / The seventh song has truth to tell
The last song echoes through the ages / to ask its question all night long / And close the circle on these pages / These, the metamythos songs

EclecticWheel

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2020, 07:46:00 am »
Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal? A sort of temporary self brainwash in the same vain as chaos magick.

You ask I think at least two different questions: are your gods real, and do they exist.

I am not at all sure I can apply the concept of existence to even God, if there is One, but that doesn't mean God isn't Real.

Then there are what I have come to regard in my devotions as my own "little gods" or "personal gods," basically spirits relevant primarily to me.

Asked whether they are real, my reaction is, well of course they're real.  Do they exist?  I am not confident in my ability to definitively answer that.

I mean, thoughts and experience may be said to "exist" in some sense, but what does that mean?

The important thing for me is that it is obvious they are real, and my actions and practices follow.

With deities with which I'm unfamiliar, I assume they are real unless given a reason to think otherwise.
My personal moral code:

Love wisely, and do what thou wilt.

Anon100

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2020, 02:36:26 pm »
If I practice magic and choose a deity but absolutely dont know what I truly believe regarding the path im using (chaos, satanism, eclecticism), only that I must brainwash myself in order to use the Power of Beleif / Prayer - what is this called? A sort of agnosticism in paganism? Usually I complete the "spell" and jump back to my Satanic philosophy.
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist? Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal? A sort of temporary self brainwash in the same vain as chaos magick.

I personally come from what I think is the other end of this thinking ( If I'm not understanding this I do appologise ).
Any ritual I do relating to deity is done because I believe in them. If I didn't believe I wouldn't do it or would do something else to get to the same purpose without calling on deities I didn't believe in.
Like Morag I don't think too hard about what's real or in what way. If I did I would have a hard time stopping that thought - am I real?? So, images or parts of me, it doesn't matter. I sense them and appreciate they have a part in my life.

Donal2018

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2020, 02:04:49 pm »
If I practice magic and choose a deity but absolutely dont know what I truly believe regarding the path im using (chaos, satanism, eclecticism), only that I must brainwash myself in order to use the Power of Beleif / Prayer - what is this called? A sort of agnosticism in paganism? Usually I complete the "spell" and jump back to my Satanic philosophy.
Do most of you truly believe the gods/deities you call upon truly exist? Does anyone just make their own rules and sanity using higher powers for their magic not taking them literal? A sort of temporary self brainwash in the same vain as chaos magick.

I just met an agnostic witch on Facebook and she had some interesting things to say on this topic. I would echo what some others have said here- it is not whether you believe in gods, it is more about whether you get meaning out of interacting with them.

If gods are ideas, they might be useful, interesting, and helpful ideas. I view gods as cultural constructs and powerful psychological symbols or archetypes. Those symbols and archetypes tend to work for me. Others may experience them as actual entities, which is great. That is just not my experience or view of gods. So, differences but respect.

Donal2018

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2020, 02:32:43 pm »
I just met an agnostic witch on Facebook and she had some interesting things to say on this topic. I would echo what some others have said here- it is not whether you believe in gods, it is more about whether you get meaning out of interacting with them.

If gods are ideas, they might be useful, interesting, and helpful ideas. I view gods as cultural constructs and powerful psychological symbols or archetypes. Those symbols and archetypes tend to work for me. Others may experience them as actual entities, which is great. That is just not my experience or view of gods. So, differences but respect.

Another thing that I would add is that the gods are not just symbols to me, they are personifications. As such they might seem like real people or entities due to the action of your mind and imagination. I can   see how it would be easy to view them as actual beings. I am agnostic about it. I choose to view gods as symbols, but admit they might exist as entities. I just prefer to view them as archetypes.

Gaudior

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Re: Are your gods/deities real?
« Reply #11 on: Yesterday at 06:38:19 pm »
When I go to the grocery store and ask someone in the produce section if they have any organic sweet potatoes, I don't spend time wondering if that person truly exists. It's irrelevant to my interaction with them.

At some point, I realized it wasn't worth wondering if the gods I met were real or just figments of my imagination. The human brain can't tell the difference, so instead of getting caught up in what if this is all imagined and I'm not REALLY eating sweet potatoes?? I'm just going to eat the sweet potatoes and enjoy them.

So it has nothing to do with belief, which I think is stagnation anyway. (Ideas are more flexible than beliefs.) I interact with the world as it presents itself to me. I check in to make sure I'm not hurting myself or other people (even if they might all be figments of my imagination, because I don't want to be the person who hurts others, real or not).

In short, I try to treat others how I want to be treated. As if I exist.

I like this explanation a lot! :)
I talk to plants.

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