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Author Topic: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices  (Read 1519 times)

Darkhawk

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Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« on: July 18, 2012, 04:08:50 pm »
So one of the things that came up in the thread that spawned this group was that people working in groups doing trance and so on can actually help support each other by verifying things that they perceive while connected to otherworlds.  Which is great!  If you have a group you're working with all doing the same thing, like the seidh training Aster was talking about.

But a lot of us are doing stuff basically on our own.  And that makes it a lot harder to confirm things.  I mean, there are occasional "So this spirit said this weird thing" and people saying "Yeah!  That spirit said that to me too!" that one gets in discussions around here, which can help.  (Though, at the same time, I've seen spiritual communities go septic where people are basically just confirming each other's illusions at each other, so it's not always as reassuring as it could be.)

(Or, like happened with me recently - the landwights in my backyard asked me for round red berries.  Okay.  Then eventually we advanced our relationship to me giving them wine, so I set out a dish of wine for them.  The Celt retrieved the dish a bit later, and asked me what had been in it, and I said wine.  After a bit of discussion, his comment was, "... I think the important thing was that it was red."  So at least there's a semi-independent confirmation that the backyard spirits like red things?)

I know I have a particular disease common in the West: trusting rational-brain more than intuition-brain.  (Or, in Feri terms, Talker more than Fetch.  Or if you've read Foxwood, the land-walker over the sea-walker.)  It's something I blogged about recently, the fact that looking things up in old texts and argued over with scholars feels a whole lot safer and more reliable and trustable than "the spirits told me that..."  It's nicely in the comfort zone.

But, as my teacher said, I need to trust all of my means of understanding the cosmos, not just the thinky-rational-brain parts.  (Thinky-rational-brain flips out at this, of course.)

One thing I've seen in various places - it was in my teacher's statements and in some stuff by Kaldera I've read, just to start with - is learning multiple systems of divination to cross-check things with, because it's harder to delude oneself in multiple symbol sets.

But I think a lot of people - I know I'm one of them - have a hard time getting stuff to cross-check at all, because the thinky-brain squelches the intuitive stuff that's on the level where the spirits and other entities might communicate.  Which means there's a more fundamental thing to be doing: learning how to hear and trust the inner voice, which comes before the learning to verify the inner voice.

So: thoughts on that doozy?
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Annie Roonie

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2012, 12:01:28 am »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64792

So: thoughts on that doozy?


Strange aside and tmi. I have got to find someone who teaches Feri over here. Been running into that all over the place. Found a blue god pic out of the blue, ha, looking for something else and it looked like a childhood dream entity that gave me my first big o 'cept the dream entity was androgynous and the pic had a decidedly impressive male unit. Scared the pee outta me and taught me the word "transmogrification." As a tike, I woke ashamed but carried that word around until I found out what it meant. And the blue entity has returned in dreams too, but this time as an unamused civil servant type and looking female by the hairstyle.

So yeah, not having much knowledge of Feri at all, but seeing that pic, I do kind of want some verification. I actually have never wanted that before because in part I have trouble trusting other people's inner voices.

And you know, I think I never wanted to verify any inner voice before also because I have always just operated thinking that I'd never share it.

I can see why this would be important in an organized mystery experience and beyond now. Wow. I have a LOT of mental organizing to do if I want to accomplish something like verification with others.

veggiewolf

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2012, 09:21:18 am »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64792
...
I know I have a particular disease common in the West: trusting rational-brain more than intuition-brain.  (Or, in Feri terms, Talker more than Fetch.  Or if you've read Foxwood, the land-walker over the sea-walker.)  It's something I blogged about recently, the fact that looking things up in old texts and argued over with scholars feels a whole lot safer and more reliable and trustable than "the spirits told me that..."  It's nicely in the comfort zone.

But, as my teacher said, I need to trust all of my means of understanding the cosmos, not just the thinky-rational-brain parts.  (Thinky-rational-brain flips out at this, of course.)

One thing I've seen in various places - it was in my teacher's statements and in some stuff by Kaldera I've read, just to start with - is learning multiple systems of divination to cross-check things with, because it's harder to delude oneself in multiple symbol sets.

But I think a lot of people - I know I'm one of them - have a hard time getting stuff to cross-check at all, because the thinky-brain squelches the intuitive stuff that's on the level where the spirits and other entities might communicate.  Which means there's a more fundamental thing to be doing: learning how to hear and trust the inner voice, which comes before the learning to verify the inner voice.

So: thoughts on that doozy?

 
I do this, too - I call them logic brain and emotion brain.  Logic brain is used to squelching emotion brain because of my Depression - emotion brain runs amok with "OMG things and THINGS!" and logic has to calm it down.

(My therapist continually gets on me for not trusting emotion brain now that it is healthier.)

I like the Kaldera idea of multiple divination systems for self-checking.  Maybe I should figure out how my shiny, new, never used, pendulum works.
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DancesWithHorses

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2012, 09:32:01 am »
Quote from: Annie Roonie;64907

So yeah, not having much knowledge of Feri at all, but seeing that pic, I do kind of want some verification. I actually have never wanted that before because in part I have trouble trusting other people's inner voices.

And you know, I think I never wanted to verify any inner voice before also because I have always just operated thinking that I'd never share it.


I'm much the same, however, I recently met some people who were able to provide some verification for the inner voices.  I rarely share it. You would think I'm insane. I learned in a horrible, hard way to trust my own inner voices.

I never believed it there were others before I met these people and we got talking. One is a good friend and she warned me, "this sounds crazy but..." and it was like a light switch. The other one is a person on a horse forum, ended up exchanging email addresses and talked about this sort of stuff.

I don't have much contact with spirits and the otherworld. I'm very much grounded in this world and what happens in this world.  I completely blocked the inner voices for literally years. Until I could not ignore them any more. I have never met anyone else that can do what I can do but the one person I've talked to says she's heard of it.

I do think that cross-checking is a good idea. I usually shy away from divination, the only one I've even remotely thought about was tarot. The greatest issue is, like Darkhawk said, learning to hear and trust that inner voice.

Like another poster, I have depression but on top of that I have social anxiety. It is very difficult to separate what is anxiety talking, what is depression clouding and what my inner voices are saying.
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Jenett

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2012, 12:52:25 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64792

But I think a lot of people - I know I'm one of them - have a hard time getting stuff to cross-check at all, because the thinky-brain squelches the intuitive stuff that's on the level where the spirits and other entities might communicate.  Which means there's a more fundamental thing to be doing: learning how to hear and trust the inner voice, which comes before the learning to verify the inner voice.

So: thoughts on that doozy?

 
The biggest advice I have is to work on building it in small steps, where if you get it wrong, it is not the end of the world.

The explanation I keep coming back to here was me learning how to have conversations about emotions via doing a lot of text-based roleplaying (MUSHes, mostly) in college: I'd grown up in a family who barely admitted that one had emotions.

Dealing with it in game (i.e. if I got stuff wrong, it was either fixable or not a long-term consequence) *and* in text (where I could edit before sending) helped a lot, because I could think through what I was trying to do, put the pieces together, and explore it.

In hindsight, thinking about how to answer this post overnight, I've done something very similar in my religious work with complicated and difficult to understand deities. You work from small pieces that can be cross-checked or at least get some independent verification, and then you work up from there.

Stuff I've done that works for me:
- Taking in data over an extended period of time (by which I mean 6+ months to years, not a few weeks) in a variety of settings (personal work, communal work, workshops, etc.)

- Multiple divination approaches, as well as having someone else do divinatory work for me.

- And this can be a tricky one to arrange, but I once had the very generous offer for someone else to do a Draw Down for M'Lady, so that I could get independent info. (It's tricky, because finding someone who is skilled and comfortable doing a Draw for a deity they're not familiar with is hard.) Immensely useful, though.

- And finally, not relying on anything until it has multiple cross-point references if it's got a lasting impact on my life. (Feeling a desire to paint my toenails blue as a devotional act, not a big deal. Toenail polish comes off or grows out. A strong impulse to quit one's job, change all one's relationships, or move across the country is a thing that requires a lot more cross-checking. Same thing with foods/oils/incense use until you've done the back research.)
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Annie Roonie

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2012, 01:15:42 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;64994


- And this can be a tricky one to arrange, but I once had the very generous offer for someone else to do a Draw Down for M'Lady, so that I could get independent info. (It's tricky, because finding someone who is skilled and comfortable doing a Draw for a deity they're not familiar with is hard.) Immensely useful, though.



What is a Draw Down? Is that like channeling?

LiminalAuggie

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2012, 01:18:49 pm »
Quote from: DancesWithHorses;64963

Like another poster, I have depression but on top of that I have social anxiety. It is very difficult to separate what is anxiety talking, what is depression clouding and what my inner voices are saying.

 
You know, I'm starting to wonder if there's something about those of us with depression and/or anxiety issues that make us more inclined or receptive to this sort of Mystery work, because this is spookily close to my experience as well.

Once thing I was able to manage with my therapist through cognitive-behavioral stuff was learning to discern which messages are coming from the toxic part of my mind and which aren't. It's gotten much easier to deal with that voice (though it still won't shut up sometimes) when I can recognize that what it's telling me is not the whole truth.

Using those same skills I've gotten better at being able to tell when words of phrases that get stuck in my head or come up in meditation are coming from something that's me or not me. It's not a perfect system though, and I really ought to learn a divination system that isn't Tarot so I can cross-check.

I'm also pretty dedicated to being solitary and...maybe never going to meet any other pagans IRL ever because hey, social anxiety, and when I think about doing anything in a sort of group setting it really weirds me out. I feel like it's okay if I'm searching for things I don't have names for on my own, even if it's all just in my head and I'm deluding myself (thanks rational brain) because it's not affecting anyone else. But exploring that with more people than just me? Terrifying.

A more specific reason I'm reluctant to do group things is that I'm just trying to identify LG at this point, and I'm pretty sure He's not one of the usual suspects I've already investigated, but if I look to other folks for assistance or confirmation there's a good likelihood that whoever else works with less obscure deities and be like "oh no, He's totally Hermes" when I'm pretty sure He's not and I still have a lot of doubt about mysticism in general and argh.

Unhelpful mental loops, ahoy.

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2012, 02:19:10 pm »
Quote from: LiminalAuggie;65004
You know, I'm starting to wonder if there's something about those of us with depression and/or anxiety issues that make us more inclined or receptive to this sort of Mystery work, because this is spookily close to my experience as well.

Once thing I was able to manage with my therapist through cognitive-behavioral stuff was learning to discern which messages are coming from the toxic part of my mind and which aren't. It's gotten much easier to deal with that voice (though it still won't shut up sometimes) when I can recognize that what it's telling me is not the whole truth.

Using those same skills I've gotten better at being able to tell when words of phrases that get stuck in my head or come up in meditation are coming from something that's me or not me. It's not a perfect system though, and I really ought to learn a divination system that isn't Tarot so I can cross-check.

I'm also pretty dedicated to being solitary and...maybe never going to meet any other pagans IRL ever because hey, social anxiety, and when I think about doing anything in a sort of group setting it really weirds me out. I feel like it's okay if I'm searching for things I don't have names for on my own, even if it's all just in my head and I'm deluding myself (thanks rational brain) because it's not affecting anyone else. But exploring that with more people than just me? Terrifying.

A more specific reason I'm reluctant to do group things is that I'm just trying to identify LG at this point, and I'm pretty sure He's not one of the usual suspects I've already investigated, but if I look to other folks for assistance or confirmation there's a good likelihood that whoever else works with less obscure deities and be like "oh no, He's totally Hermes" when I'm pretty sure He's not and I still have a lot of doubt about mysticism in general and argh.

Unhelpful mental loops, ahoy.

 
using my tarot to point blank ask questions to deity in a ritual setting,not just a self reading setting seems the only way I get any concrete answers,and I trust what my cards are saying is truth from them because I NEVER get the answers I want. which so far is the only way I can verify its not just my inner voice ego making me feel better or what not.
I have a big chitchat ritual in mind tonite and hope I get a different reply this time,last time I asked what was I missing/doing wrong,in trying to have dream contact,visions with hekate and she sed: never mind me,deal with your relationship,home life first...then we can talk. *foot stamp,pout*

I also feel the same about asking and discussing with other folks,because if I say well this is what I got,can you help me get it right or tell me what you think,etc. then they tell me,well THAT part you got wrong,its never like that....and that (like you knowing it's not Hermes for sure) was the only part I WAS sure about,I wanted help with things around that element,not advice on that element itself. lol.
let me clarify:I am told repeatedly,eshu/legba are not the same being you can't work with both as one.
but I've asked them point blank myself and had them laugh and say keep on keeping on,don't listen to what others say,your doing fine,why do you care what they think? and then they go and say,we are fine with things being done together to us both. without them ever verifying for me if they really ARE one entity or two completely separate ones....O.o so I'm left right back where I was...trying to deal with them as a pair but as one deity at the same time.
which to me just sounds so very much like something they would find highly amusing at my expense. SIGH
am I going off topic? I can't tell.
I didn't mean to....I'm just trying to say YES I agree,it's hard to ignore logic fact brain and trust what emotion,inner voices intuition brain sez all the time. you want to and a younger you totally would without question,but the other part of you sez,ok prove it smart guy! or....what would others think??
somehow UPG is always subject to skepticism and not as worthy.
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Ize bel daleen.

DancesWithHorses

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2012, 02:32:32 pm »
Quote from: LiminalAuggie;65004
You know, I'm starting to wonder if there's something about those of us with depression and/or anxiety issues that make us more inclined or receptive to this sort of Mystery work, because this is spookily close to my experience as well.

Once thing I was able to manage with my therapist through cognitive-behavioral stuff was learning to discern which messages are coming from the toxic part of my mind and which aren't. It's gotten much easier to deal with that voice (though it still won't shut up sometimes) when I can recognize that what it's telling me is not the whole truth.

Using those same skills I've gotten better at being able to tell when words of phrases that get stuck in my head or come up in meditation are coming from something that's me or not me. It's not a perfect system though, and I really ought to learn a divination system that isn't Tarot so I can cross-check.

I'm also pretty dedicated to being solitary and...maybe never going to meet any other pagans IRL ever because hey, social anxiety, and when I think about doing anything in a sort of group setting it really weirds me out. I feel like it's okay if I'm searching for things I don't have names for on my own, even if it's all just in my head and I'm deluding myself (thanks rational brain) because it's not affecting anyone else. But exploring that with more people than just me? Terrifying.

 
There is the possibility. My friend is almost identical and has a lot more experience. She's also much stronger in abilities/sensitivity (whatever you want to call it) than me. One thing that stands out to me, is that both of us, when we are in stable, solid, supporting relationships, much of the depression and social anxiety disappears.

I have my friend, that's usually enough for talking over things. She's much like an aunt to me. Now this thread has me exploring dreams and the like. The mind is an amazing thing.

As for the entities laughing at oneself... they never give me clear answers. They seem to like giving me headaches.
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Jenett

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2012, 02:49:34 pm »
Quote from: Annie Roonie;65003
What is a Draw Down? Is that like channeling?

 
Roughly, yes. The term comes from Drawing Down the Moon, inviting (in that case) a Goddess into the body of the priestess (most commonly). Drawing Down the Moon has some classical-era references, but there's a more modern parallel Drawing Down the Sun. The other term you'll hear is aspecting.

It can be anything from a very light sense of presence to something a great deal more direct and specific. (I've been present in ritual for most places on that spectrum, and done a Draw that was very direct and up front with the goddess in question having some very clear ideas about what I was going to say.)

Whatever you call it, it can be prone to abuse (be very very careful if you're told to do something that benefits the person who's hosting the deity). But done right, and in service to community, it can be an immensely useful tool and an amazingly potent experience.
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Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2012, 02:56:12 pm »
Quote from: LiminalAuggie;65004
You know, I'm starting to wonder if there's something about those of us with depression and/or anxiety issues that make us more inclined or receptive to this sort of Mystery work, because this is spookily close to my experience as well.
...

I have a theory, shared with some others here, that Deity has a less-complicated time dealing with human brains when they're partially...cracked open already?

I owe a blog post on the subject, I think.
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Annie Roonie

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2012, 03:13:28 pm »
Quote from: DancesWithHorses;64963
I'm much the same, however, I recently met some people who were able to provide some verification for the inner voices.  I rarely share it. You would think I'm insane. I learned in a horrible, hard way to trust my own inner voices..


On my own, I trust my inner voices. Perhaps because my inner voice is an observer I think. This multiple avenues for verification is done but I never called it that. I scry everything, not intentionally much of the time. And the tools that are specifically designed for divination tend to back up what the world has already been displaying.

I just never saw the need to verify with others, but I can see why that would be important to people now.


 If anyone wants to play with their hemispheres for a bit,
 here's an concise article with an optical illusion that can help a body figure which side of the brain they may be using. Everybody uses both, so everybody can eventually make it change spinning directions.  

It's not special really, but I cross over, lots of people do. Which is to say, I don't use either side exclusively or necessarily predominantly. Some situations and people call for one side to respond predominantly and that required side steps up. Many of my colleagues also demonstrate that they cross over as well and very easily. I think we have to do it in order to get concepts across to different kinds of thinkers.

The only shrink I was involuntarily sent to (in 1st grade due to driving a nun apeshit enough to hit me and draw blood) tested me and told my mother it was likely that fast inter-hemispheric processes were in work and that the nun in question was frustrated by that. Every little test since then has born this inter-hemispheric dealio out. And also told me that I am not alone.

Fluidity can be learned too if anyone wants to - it's not particularly helpful in every line of work though. If a body challenges both sides simultaneously and repeatedly over years, IME, the fast crossing become ingrained and speedier.

My hunch is that with some people who do the natural sign spotting, many of whom are drawn to paganism, have another task going at all times already and may be a lot more porous to start. Thus the uber academic flavor of many pagan arenas. Both sides are engaged and want to be engaged.

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2012, 03:16:37 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;65019

It can be anything from a very light sense of presence to something a great deal more direct and specific. (I've been present in ritual for most places on that spectrum, and done a Draw that was very direct and up front with the goddess in question having some very clear ideas about what I was going to say.)

Whatever you call it, it can be prone to abuse (be very very careful if you're told to do something that benefits the person who's hosting the deity). But done right, and in service to community, it can be an immensely useful tool and an amazingly potent experience.


Thank you for this explanation. I can see where this could be a great way to verify things certainly.

DancesWithHorses

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2012, 03:39:27 pm »
Quote from: Annie Roonie;65027

My hunch is that with some people who do the natural sign spotting, many of whom are drawn to paganism, have another task going at all times already and may be a lot more porous to start. Thus the uber academic flavor of many pagan arenas. Both sides are engaged and want to be engaged.

 
I think I agree with you there. And the brains, that is wicked, I got the dancer to skip after a while. According to that I am more right-brain but a lot of that was killed by the public education system. Hunches and science don't mix that well ;)
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Jenett

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Re: Learning to Trust the Inner Voices
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2012, 03:45:12 pm »
Quote from: LiminalAuggie;65004
You know, I'm starting to wonder if there's something about those of us with depression and/or anxiety issues that make us more inclined or receptive to this sort of Mystery work, because this is spookily close to my experience as well.


I'd actually suggest it might be the other way around - that people who are what's sometimes called 'open headed' (i.e. more responsive to this kind of outside stimulus from deities/spirits/other entities) may be somewhat more prone to depression, anxiety, or other issues that are at least partly driven by response to external stimulus.

(I've seen it go both ways with people I worked with, but more generally the "this person has been seriously open-headed since childhood, and now has other stuff going on" is a bit more common.)

Quote

A more specific reason I'm reluctant to do group things is that I'm just trying to identify LG at this point, and I'm pretty sure He's not one of the usual suspects I've already investigated, but if I look to other folks for assistance or confirmation there's a good likelihood that whoever else works with less obscure deities and be like "oh no, He's totally Hermes" when I'm pretty sure He's not and I still have a lot of doubt about mysticism in general and argh.


There's different varieties of group things. A lot of times, M'Lady doesn't come up much in group work. Even when she did (i.e. when my training was explicitly including some "make a connection with at least one deity" stuff), once I said "No, not any of the likely suspects", my teachers and group mates when "Hmm.", offered occasional ideas when I hit specific annoyances, and mostly left it alone.

Groups - and people - vary, but really, I want to work with people who, when I say "Hey, thanks for trying to be helpful, but that suggestion there? Heard it, not so helpful." go "Oh, right." and move on. Doesn't really matter what the topic is.
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