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Author Topic: General/Non-Specific: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?  (Read 601 times)

Melissa

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How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« on: January 10, 2018, 09:50:37 am »
Hello!

I would like to know how to worship and connect with a deity that fits myself? Is it normal that meditation results in nothing or am I doing anything wrong? Have any of you had experience connecting and meeting your deity, receiving advice from them in life, if yes, please share. :) Thank you and have a nice day.

TransporterMalfunction

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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2018, 11:38:41 am »
Hello!

I would like to know how to worship and connect with a deity that fits myself? Is it normal that meditation results in nothing or am I doing anything wrong? Have any of you had experience connecting and meeting your deity, receiving advice from them in life, if yes, please share. :) Thank you and have a nice day.

In my experience, I haven't had any obvious 'I am your god/goddess, worship me NOW!' kind of experiences. What I do is I pray out loud to deities, and then go into meditation to see if I feel anything from the deity I prayed to. Probably the most common one I get is 'We'll probably never be BFFs, but I don't remind receiving worship from you every once in a while.' Sometimes it's hard for me to get in the correct frame of mind for meditation, and I can't really hear anything. Divination could be another route to go, although I suck at it so I can't offer any concrete suggestions there.

Also, I would encourage you to not just look for a deity that fits your personality. It could work out like that, and that is great, but sometimes people find that deities who they don't mesh with at first blush can provide a lot of opportunities for spiritual growth.
Remember how long you’ve been putting this off, how many extensions the gods gave you, and you didn’t use them. At some point you have to recognize what world it is that you belong to; what power rules it and from what source you spring; that there is a limit to the time assigned to you, and if you don’t use it to free yourself it will be gone and will never return. - Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, Book II

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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2018, 02:35:24 pm »
I would like to know how to worship and connect with a deity that fits myself?

It varies a lot for different people - and for different deities! I usually suggest approaching building relationship with deities like building relationships with people, and having those kinds of expectations.

Say you move to a new physical location, away from where you've lived before. You start doing things to make connections in that new place - you may go looking for a new doctor or childcare or dog park. You may go to things related to your hobbies or interests. And as you go to new places, you'll run into a bunch of people you don't know.

A lot of those people, you aren't going to connect with - you may smile and nod, but that's about it. Some you might hit smalltalk with, but it never goes further. Some you'll build a specific kind of interaction with (doctor, childcare, people who run events you attend regularly...)

But most of those are not going to turn into 'oh, now you're my great friend'. Chances are decent that you might find a couple of people that you're interested in getting to know better, but building the relationship takes both people being interested, and then usually some time and repeated interactions.

(Sometimes - usually pretty rarely - you get that spark of 'oh, this person is going to be really important in my life' and the interaction develops very fast. But if you think about it in the context of all the people you've ever met, you can probably see why betting on that for deity relationships is not a great statistical choice.)

Quote
Is it normal that meditation results in nothing or am I doing anything wrong?

Do you mean a meditation to meet a deity? (in context of your other question)

That's sometimes the case. It's hard to tell without knowing a bit more about what you're trying and what your experience with meditation is so far. Sometimes we don't get anything because we haven't learned the skills to have an open-ended meditation experience like that. Sometimes it's because we're aiming at a specific deity (or concept of deity) and that's not the right fit. Sometimes it's not the right day for that. There are lots of possible things going on.

(My usual recommendation for this kind of meditation work is Diana Paxson's Trance-Portation. She includes meditations specifically about building deity connections, but she also has some of the best 'this thing is happening, what do I try' troubleshooting advice of any book on the topic. It's based on courses she taught, and then other teachers teaching the same material, incorporating the experiences of the students to adjust/add explanations as needed.)

Quote
Have any of you had experience connecting and meeting your deity, receiving advice from them in life.

Yes, but it's not the 'constantly in my head offering advice' sort of thing.

In my tradition, our deity work was rather carefully structured. We started training, attending rituals and gaining some experience and knowledge of a variety of deities (my tradition has usually worked with one pair for lunar rituals, various combinations for solar rituals depending on the focus, a particular pair for specific rituals, and then encouraged people to build individual relationships as part of training with whatever deities made sense for them.)

Part of our homework each month was an exercise of researching a deity and learning some core things about them (about 3-5 pages of writeup at most: not exhaustive, but significantly more than the quick summaries in many books) and also to do an artistic or creative work that related to that deity. The deities we did this with were one the tradition worked with regularly, a couple like Brigid, who come up in the larger community really often (so having some familiarity is really helpful), and a few that were there for other reasons of the teachers. There's a longer description on my website of how that worked I won't repeat here

Once we were about nine months into training, we spent a class talking about different kinds of deity interactions, and we had a meditation to help us discover a deity to work more with (not 'this is your main deity forever', but very explicitly 'this is one possible relationship you can choose to build on'.)

I went into that class having had a very detailed and specific dream the night before, which gave me a lot of sensory data (fabric! flowers and their smells! what the land smelled like! the sound of water in a fountain!) but nothing easily researchable like, y'know, names or obvious iconography. The meditation reinforced a lot of that, and I kept going with that.

15+ years later, I still don't have a name that anyone else will know, but I'm a lot more sure where M'Lady comes from, and some of her interactions. I'm *very* clear about her goals for me, but it is mostly a hands-off sort of thing. At particular points in my life, where I've done as much as I can do on my own, I've asked for her help, but it's usually been smoothing the way or making things work out more smoothly, rather than advice or commentary.

(The one place I do get her making commentary regularly is a 'you should reply to that post' nudge, or the equivalent in person. The 'that is part of your work for me, go do that thing'.)

Over those years, I've also had a variety of other experiences with deities, including Drawing Down (both being present for, and in one case, doing in ritual), but most of my other interactions are either more relational (group work) or situational (asking X deity for Y thing because Y is a thing they care about and want to help with, like my relationship with my doctor or another professional.)
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Eastling

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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2018, 01:07:03 am »
Hello!

I would like to know how to worship and connect with a deity that fits myself? Is it normal that meditation results in nothing or am I doing anything wrong? Have any of you had experience connecting and meeting your deity, receiving advice from them in life, if yes, please share. :) Thank you and have a nice day.

It is very possible to connect with a god, goddess, Power, deity, etc. that fits you without receiving a vision in the middle of meditation. For example, researching subjects that interest you, learning what deities are connected with them, and then further investigating those Powers is a valid way of pursuing a pagan spiritual path. If you haven't had an epiphany from meditation, it doesn't necessarily mean you're doing anything wrong. It might mean your epiphany lies elsewhere--or that you don't need an epiphany, only to seek your own path. (And the people commenting above me have good advice on that!)

For my own part, I more or less decided what I wanted in a deity and then started reaching out in dramatic ways--getting semi-impulsive magical tattoos, writing elaborate passionate prayers to mysterious goddesses, that sort of thing. I did eventually get a dramatic response, but it wasn't from a Power I'd expected at all, and the Power I did get turned out to be pretty intense to deal with. So I can't say I recommend that method to everybody.

I think I can say, though, that in an ideal practice, you get what you put out. It's not about performing specific actions to get the perfect deity. It's about finding out what works for you, and that includes the gods you worship. Sometimes you don't "get it right" the first time (I thought I was worshipping Lilith for a while, but she actually handed me off pretty quickly). That's fine, too.
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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2018, 05:01:15 am »
Hello!

I would like to know how to worship and connect with a deity that fits myself? Is it normal that meditation results in nothing or am I doing anything wrong? Have any of you had experience connecting and meeting your deity, receiving advice from them in life, if yes, please share. :) Thank you and have a nice day.

I can't comment on anyone's experiences but my own, as it tends to be different for others.  But when Anubis first approached me, I was alone at work, working on the recently departed.  It was cold as areas with corpses tend to be, but that night it was extra cold.  It was bone chilling cold.  I had just finished up with Mr. Roberts, and that's when I felt Anubis.  He wrapped around me like a warm cloak that blocked out the cold.  I did some research, and I don't think I've told this here before but I was in the library and walked past a shelf of Egyptian gods.  A book fell off the shelf and opened to the exact page that was talking about Anubis.  I took that as a sign.
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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2018, 01:07:49 am »
It is very possible to connect with a god, goddess, Power, deity, etc. that fits you without receiving a vision in the middle of meditation. For example, researching subjects that interest you, learning what deities are connected with them, and then further investigating those Powers is a valid way of pursuing a pagan spiritual path. If you haven't had an epiphany from meditation, it doesn't necessarily mean you're doing anything wrong. It might mean your epiphany lies elsewhere--or that you don't need an epiphany, only to seek your own path. (And the people commenting above me have good advice on that!)

I want to add to what East says here, that not everyone does experience direct interaction with deity - it's actually much more common not to. Despite what some books and websites suggest, you don't need to receive communications from deity/ies to be pagan, nor is it necessary for a deity to choose or acknowledge you before you can honor them. As East says, finding deities that interest you for whatever reason, researching them further, and deciding which ones you want to honor, is a perfectly legitimate approach.

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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2018, 01:20:19 am »
I want to add to what East says here, that not everyone does experience direct interaction with deity - it's actually much more common not to. Despite what some books and websites suggest, you don't need to receive communications from deity/ies to be pagan, nor is it necessary for a deity to choose or acknowledge you before you can honor them.

I'll continue the chain and add to what Sunflower says. I'm going to give an example.

My mother has, as far as I can tell, no personal and intimate relationship with her God. At least--she has never once in over three decades of raising me said anything about it. She has never once told me about miracles that happened to her or tried to describe the Nature of the Divine for me. All the Kabbalah books I inherited came from my dabbling ger father. Frankly, she seems utterly disinterested in such things.

She is also the most Jewish woman I have ever known. She works at a Jewish institution; she takes an active role in her synagogue's governance; she made a concerted effort to raise both her sons steeped in Jewish culture.

There are a lot of people like her in Judaism, and there's no reason they can't exist in modern paganism as well.
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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2018, 06:09:38 am »
Part of our homework each month was an exercise of researching a deity and learning some core things about them (about 3-5 pages of writeup at most: not exhaustive, but significantly more than the quick summaries in many books) and also to do an artistic or creative work that related to that deity.
I think that's a really good exercise.

I don't have so much to add, because there are already really good tipps in this thread.

In my experience research and creative work helps a lot to build a relationship with deities. It also helps to read myth and (with a grain of salt) contempory fiction or look at artwork.

I think it's a bit similar to learning a new language...it helps to read, talk, watch TV in that language to broaden your vocabulary, conversation skills and to understand the culture behind the language. With deities the "vocabulary" is not just words, but also images, sounds, relations to different aspects of the world. It takes a while to integrate into that.

When you finally have a personal conversation with a deity it will help a lot if you already have some "vocabulary". A lot from the beginner problems I had came from having experiences with deities, but lacking the context to deal with them.

Now I think of it integrating oneself into a different religion than you were raised in is a lot like moving to a different country, learning the language and getting to know the culture and people and trying out different things.

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Re: How can I connect with a deity that fits my personality?
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2018, 11:23:46 am »
Hello!

I would like to know how to worship and connect with a deity that fits myself? Is it normal that meditation results in nothing or am I doing anything wrong? Have any of you had experience connecting and meeting your deity, receiving advice from them in life, if yes, please share. :) Thank you and have a nice day.

You can reach out and embrace and experience any god or goddess you want, never allow anyone to convince you otherwise.  All it takes is Will, and action upon that Will. 

If that is difficult for you to understand, try and think of it like this.  When you know what it is you must experience, deep down like it was always meant to be, like some burning magnetic desire and passion that's been pushing you towards a certain path, you act upon that inner power and make things happen so that you've experienced what you felt you must experience.




𒊩𒆪  𒂔𒇸𒀝  𒄿𒈨
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𒊩𒆪  𒂔𒇸𒀝  𒄿𒈨

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