by W. B. Yeats
I went out to the hazel wood, Because a fire was in my head, And cut and peeled a hazel wand, And hooked a berry to a thread; And when white moths were on the wing, And moth-like stars were flickering out, I dropped the berry in a stream And caught a little silver trout. When I had laid it on the floor I went to blow the fire a-flame, But something rustled on the floor, And someone called me by my name: It had become a glimmering girl With apple blossom in her hair Who called me by my name and ran And faded through the brightening air. Though I am old with wandering Through hollow lands and hilly lands, I will find out where she has gone, And kiss her lips and take her hands; And walk among long dappled grass, And pluck till time and times are done, The silver apples of the moon, The golden apples of the sun.
Six of Wands
Time to reap the harvest of previously sown effort. A moment of acceptance of gifts and blessings that are a reward for generous and wise forethought.
It is time to reap your harvest and give thanks for its bounty.
Let me say that I was writing on godspousing and veiling out of genuine concern. I did not target anyone in particular and if you thought it was about you I can only say, consult the Carly Simon song. But I have some final stories to tell about why I’m so concerned about the practices which I hope you will take into consideration.
I’ve had some of my own experiences and I’ve seen what my students over the years were put through out of naiveté and sometimes hubris or a combination thereof. Or Sometimes it was someone wanting to fit in or impress people. I taught Wicca 101 & 102 for about 10 years sometimes 3 times a year or more and the people who landed in my class had usually landed there because they had had some experience learning on their own and their HPS sent them to me to sort them out. I’m glad that their HPS trusted me so much but sometimes it felt like a dump job because the HPS didn’t want to sort it out.
And the problem was usually the same, someone had taken a patron/matron/ personal deity because they felt like they needed one and had picked one that looked appealing to them and got in some kind of trouble.
Because deities don’t think like humans and don’t really care to most of the time. They want supplicants and adherents and sometimes the human got used in ways they did not expect and plan for.
A student in my very first class had trained with Dianics like I had and had decided she wanted to follow Hestia, I’m still not sure exactly what happened because she said she was too embarrassed to tell me but somehow her devoting herself to Hestia got her housebound for an entire year and she was very clear that it was because of her self-dedication and that whatever had happened was not her choice but that she chose to do whatever it was but then when the year was over she had decided enough was enough.
My co-teacher in that class had some of the same type of experiences when she decided to dedicate herself to Lakshmi for a year and a day. She had some fantastic experiences because Lakshmi is the Indian goddess of plenty but she paid a price. She worked for VW and got to test drive a car for a year. She would get offered free tickets to shows she wanted to see. Wonderful opportunities came her way and she gained over a 100 lbs.
I had an experience along with 5 other women with Hecate at the WCWMF and decided that I might devote myself to her and I’m not sorry I did it but I saw things that are still with me because I became hospice clergy at the AIDS Service Center before the AIDS cocktail was available to all in this country. Those experiences will stick with me the rest of my life and I’m grateful for them and it gave me ways to deal with my parents when they were dying and it gave me things to say to my brother before he died but it also hurts your heart from loss. At least that was the price I paid as an Empath.
You pay a price to devote yourself to a deity and you need to go into for the right reason with your eyes wide open and be willing to pay the price and toll that will be levied. You never get off lightly. I saw countless clueless women who took Kali for their name without thinking it through. Their lives went to hell in a handbasket, either because what the goddess required had too high a price and they refused to pay it or they were so clueless they didn’t understand what was required and Kali doesn’t mess around or suffer fools gladly. I know women who took her as theirs with both eyes wide open and accepting what was required and have a wonderful full life because of it.
I devote myself to Brighid but I’m also a smith, a teller of tales and a healer in my small way. When she wants me to write something or create something I do it and unless I’m on the freeway at the time I don’t question it. She has had to learn about freeways.
I can understand having a relationship with Ares/Mars/Thor or other martial types if you are a peace officer or have been in the military. Then you understand what is required and have already paid the price for devoting yourself albeit maybe in ways you never imagined but that relationship works because there are often shared goals and outcomes. There is no way I’d do it if I wasn’t in those professions.
We don’t always know how deity is worshipped and we have lost some of their aspects over time so things may happen that you will have no clue are headed your way. You have to be clear on what you may have to give up for that relationship. Deity often does not understand the whole space time continuum thing and think all time is now.
Devotion with eyes wide open and the maturity to make choices and the willingness to study is a wonderful thing but without knowing at least some of the possible outcomes can really get you hurt. I know if people are new they think I’m busting into their business and it’s their practice and why do should I care, that I should mind my own business. Well, I may be one of the ones that has to put you back together when things go wrong. I’d like you to go with knowledge and not go running back to some where safe like Christianity when things go wrong. I’d like you to do it for the right reason and not to be the “cool kid”. Do it because you can’t imagine doing anything else. Do it because you must, not because you decide to oneup some other person on Tumblr. Don’t do it because you think you should and everyone else is doing it so you have to do it.
One last thought, in ancient times you could run down to Temple Row to the Temple of the your deity of choice and you would have been taken care of and your needs met. You would have had fellow priests and priestesses to share the load and the experience with but we don’t have that. In the real world you have to make a living and at least part of the time live in the real world. Try to remember that there is a real world to interface with?
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