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Author Topic: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?  (Read 1542 times)

Cabal

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Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« on: November 23, 2013, 10:09:20 pm »
I recently tried to go completely over to Thelema, but the Celtic Gods I honored I still feel so connected to. I know several people have more than just one practice, and I was wondering how you were able to make time for both and find a good balance between the different paths.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2013, 10:24:47 am by RandallS »
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Faemon

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Re: Finding Balance
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2013, 11:32:16 pm »
Quote from: Cryfder;130446
I recently tried to go completely over to Thelema, but the Celtic Gods I honored I still feel so connected to. I know several people have more than just one practice, and I was wondering how you were able to make time for both and find a good balance between the different paths.


I've been treated like a ping-pong ball between the Celtic and Norse gods this past year and a half, so I've hung on to a barely-technical sort of faelatry since that seems to be a feature both have in common.

From what I've gathered, Crowley himself was influenced heavily by both Kemetic and Western Ceremonial practices...while he can be criticized for a lot, innovatively breaking out of the mold and forging his own way is admirable of him. Perhaps the same thing can be done with your Celtic/Thelemic practice. Obviously, the exact same thing can't be done by definition, but, you know, something like that sort of.
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Enid

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Re: Finding Balance
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2013, 11:46:22 pm »
Quote from: Cryfder;130446
I was wondering how you were able to make time for both and find a good balance between the different paths.

 
I consider myself a Druid, but I also maintain a shrine to Caddi Ayo, the Caddo "Captain of the Sky" who is not only a local deity, but a deity my recent Caddo ancestors worshiped. I think the best way to maintain balance is to trust yourself, and that small voice that tells you where you need to be focusing energy at the moment. I think it really does depend on your needs and the relationships with your gods and/or practice. It's not easy, but that's the best advice I have for you.
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Micheál

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Re: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2013, 09:16:22 pm »
Quote from: Cryfder;130446
I recently tried to go completely over to Thelema, but the Celtic Gods I honored I still feel so connected to. I know several people have more than just one practice, and I was wondering how you were able to make time for both and find a good balance between the different paths.

This is something that I notice comes up a lot and one that I've filtered through myself. I've found it has a lot to do with how society and major religions have conditioned the word, 'religion,' and the concept of belonging to one or no other. If one does worship particular Gods, or a certain pantheon, it's only natural to abide by the culture of their names' worldview, which yes may conflict with beliefs in another path.

I can only speak from my own experience, and in that if I have to class my religion it'd be Wicca, as that's the established tradition&priesthood I've taken oaths to, and commit to preserve. Fortunately Wicca's Gods "aren't jealous gods," and being an orthopraxic tradition does not conflict with my beliefs or world-view as a Gaelic Polytheist, which I personally consider myself in my personal practise as it's the culture I live in.

Thelema is a bit different. Its deities are Thelemic versions of Egyptian Gods, which I've never had a connection with. Actually other than the Wiccan Gods, I don't stray from Gaelic deities. Thelema, though, is very diverse. You can go through endless debates on Lashtal, other forums, and everywhere seeing Thelemites debate to the death whether or not it's a religion or not. Thelemites come from very diverse backgrounds and hold many different beliefs where everything from its practises to deities are highly subjective, so the only real essential rule is to accept the word of the "Law." That also qualifies Thelema as a philosophy, and like Masonry a "philosophical companion of religion," if one chooses to view it that way, like myself.

Some, however, do consider it their religion, and follow it as one. There's a cousin order here with many good friends called the "Irish Order of Thelema," that started as OTO, but split off to pretty much adhre to the philosophy while religiously acknowledging where they live, and Irish deities. I, however, am Caliphate OTO, which I remain in for the fraternal aspects and to help tge order grow. The rituals involved such as Resh, The Gnostic Mass, e.t.c, are just philosophical metaphors to me......and it also doesn't hurt though having the fact Gardner was a brother himself, who used some of Thelema's material in Wicca.

So for me, I see it as having a religion, a personal spirituality, and a philosophy. For many just one of these encompasses all, which rightly so, sure can. I can cover all areas with one, but in others, they're complimented.

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Re: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2013, 02:01:27 pm »
Quote from: Cryfder;130446
I recently tried to go completely over to Thelema, but the Celtic Gods I honored I still feel so connected to. I know several people have more than just one practice, and I was wondering how you were able to make time for both and find a good balance between the different paths.

 
As for me, I have incorporated the faces of many deities from many pantheons into the same path. When I'm doing something general, I simply refer to "The Goddess" and "The AllFather", as I believe all deities can be traced back to those two. And if I'm working on something specific, let's say Love, I'll work directly with a love-based deity. I usually work with the one that "pulls" me. For example, it may seem obvious to work with Aphrodite, but if I have a pull towards Hathor or Isis, I'll work with Her.  And as long as I remember all the deities and treat them pretty equally, all is well.
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Liadine (dragonflyeyes)

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Re: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2013, 04:20:11 pm »
Quote from: Cryfder;130446
I recently tried to go completely over to Thelema, but the Celtic Gods I honored I still feel so connected to. I know several people have more than just one practice, and I was wondering how you were able to make time for both and find a good balance between the different paths.

 
I describe myself as eclectic rather than following two distinct religions, but I am devoted to gods from two (er, two and a half?) pantheons, and the different pantheons require different things from me in terms of worship, ritual purity, our relationships, etc.

The two things I've found useful are making sure that things that *must* be done on a regular basis are scheduled in, and scheduling certain times/days which are dedicated to each deity/pantheon (which is related to the former, but also a distinct thing). So, when I do my nightly devotions, they're done in the same time frame but as two separate blocks: first I do my devotions to the Hellenic deities (with the purity rituals that involves), then Brighid and Himself.

Really, for me it mostly involves staying conscious of my responsibilities and whether I've been neglecting anything - same as if I was just following one path. The difficulties come in when one path demands something that's frowned upon by the other, or have conflicting teachings, or so on. That's only happened a few times for me, and it's just been a process of deciding what was best for me, what I actually believed, and how I was going to make it up to the deities/reconcile the two paths.
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Cabal

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Re: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2013, 05:53:15 pm »
Quote from: Micheál;130556
This is something that I notice comes up a lot and one that I've filtered through myself. I've found it has a lot to do with how society and major religions have conditioned the word, 'religion,' and the concept of belonging to one or no other. If one does worship particular Gods, or a certain pantheon, it's only natural to abide by the culture of their names' worldview, which yes may conflict with beliefs in another path.

I can only speak from my own experience, and in that if I have to class my religion it'd be Wicca, as that's the established tradition&priesthood I've taken oaths to, and commit to preserve. Fortunately Wicca's Gods "aren't jealous gods," and being an orthopraxic tradition does not conflict with my beliefs or world-view as a Gaelic Polytheist, which I personally consider myself in my personal practise as it's the culture I live in.

Thelema is a bit different. Its deities are Thelemic versions of Egyptian Gods, which I've never had a connection with. Actually other than the Wiccan Gods, I don't stray from Gaelic deities. Thelema, though, is very diverse. You can go through endless debates on Lashtal, other forums, and everywhere seeing Thelemites debate to the death whether or not it's a religion or not. Thelemites come from very diverse backgrounds and hold many different beliefs where everything from its practises to deities are highly subjective, so the only real essential rule is to accept the word of the "Law." That also qualifies Thelema as a philosophy, and like Masonry a "philosophical companion of religion," if one chooses to view it that way, like myself.

Some, however, do consider it their religion, and follow it as one. There's a cousin order here with many good friends called the "Irish Order of Thelema," that started as OTO, but split off to pretty much adhre to the philosophy while religiously acknowledging where they live, and Irish deities. I, however, am Caliphate OTO, which I remain in for the fraternal aspects and to help tge order grow. The rituals involved such as Resh, The Gnostic Mass, e.t.c, are just philosophical metaphors to me......and it also doesn't hurt though having the fact Gardner was a brother himself, who used some of Thelema's material in Wicca.

So for me, I see it as having a religion, a personal spirituality, and a philosophy. For many just one of these encompasses all, which rightly so, sure can. I can cover all areas with one, but in others, they're complimented.
I'm really starting to feel this way about Thelema and the OTO. I can not for the life of me, really connect to the Deities of Thelema, but love what it stands for and the ritual aspects. I love my OTO community as well. But I have only ever really been drawn to Gods of the Brythonic Celts.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2013, 06:01:02 pm by Cabal »
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Re: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2013, 03:58:50 am »
Quote from: Micheál;130556
This is something that I notice comes up a lot and one that I've filtered through myself. I've found it has a lot to do with how society and major religions have conditioned the word, 'religion,' and the concept of belonging to one or no other. If one does worship particular Gods, or a certain pantheon, it's only natural to abide by the culture of their names' worldview, which yes may conflict with beliefs in another path.

I can only speak from my own experience, and in that if I have to class my religion it'd be Wicca, as that's the established tradition&priesthood I've taken oaths to, and commit to preserve. Fortunately Wicca's Gods "aren't jealous gods," and being an orthopraxic tradition does not conflict with my beliefs or world-view as a Gaelic Polytheist, which I personally consider myself in my personal practise as it's the culture I live in.

Thelema is a bit different. Its deities are Thelemic versions of Egyptian Gods, which I've never had a connection with. Actually other than the Wiccan Gods, I don't stray from Gaelic deities. Thelema, though, is very diverse. You can go through endless debates on Lashtal, other forums, and everywhere seeing Thelemites debate to the death whether or not it's a religion or not. Thelemites come from very diverse backgrounds and hold many different beliefs where everything from its practises to deities are highly subjective, so the only real essential rule is to accept the word of the "Law." That also qualifies Thelema as a philosophy, and like Masonry a "philosophical companion of religion," if one chooses to view it that way, like myself.

Some, however, do consider it their religion, and follow it as one. There's a cousin order here with many good friends called the "Irish Order of Thelema," that started as OTO, but split off to pretty much adhre to the philosophy while religiously acknowledging where they live, and Irish deities. I, however, am Caliphate OTO, which I remain in for the fraternal aspects and to help tge order grow. The rituals involved such as Resh, The Gnostic Mass, e.t.c, are just philosophical metaphors to me......and it also doesn't hurt though having the fact Gardner was a brother himself, who used some of Thelema's material in Wicca.

So for me, I see it as having a religion, a personal spirituality, and a philosophy. For many just one of these encompasses all, which rightly so, sure can. I can cover all areas with one, but in others, they're complimented.

 
I like Micheál's perspective on this. My OBOD practice, too, is metaphorical and philosophical, more than religious, for me. The rituals are about the celebration of the land, its spirits and its seasons, whereas my Gaelic polytheism is more about honouring the gods of the tribe(s), and is much more religious in flavour.

The other area where I'm fairly eclectic is in terms of magic, but I see that much more as a set of tools than as a religious thing.
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Materialist

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Re: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2013, 04:29:51 pm »
Quote from: Cryfder;130446
I know several people have more than just one practice, and I was wondering how you were able to make time for both and find a good balance between the different paths.


For me, the different practices eventually combined and turned into their own thing (and when I figure out the one perfect word that describes it I'll tell y'all). I think that is the natural progression of practicing different traditions. All my ancestral rites fused into sraddha; agnihotra combined with elements inspired by Romano-British sacrificial pits and cult urns; and now that permafrost has set in astaka is being joined with Romano-British and Viking practices of making sacrifices at rivers, big trees and rocks.

So I think your practices will eventually sort themselves out.

Cabal

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Re: Finding Balance Between Multiple Religions/Practices?
« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2013, 06:40:05 pm »
Quote from: Materialist;130975
For me, the different practices eventually combined and turned into their own thing (and when I figure out the one perfect word that describes it I'll tell y'all). I think that is the natural progression of practicing different traditions. All my ancestral rites fused into sraddha; agnihotra combined with elements inspired by Romano-British sacrificial pits and cult urns; and now that permafrost has set in astaka is being joined with Romano-British and Viking practices of making sacrifices at rivers, big trees and rocks.

So I think your practices will eventually sort themselves out.

 Yeah, I am combining a lot of my practices into a single practice to honor my house hold gods!
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