Tag Archive | goddess

Pagans pray.

Pagans pray. This is something some people can’t always get their minds around, sometimes even pagans can’t get their mind around it and can only relate it to Christianity but I don’t know of any religion or spirituality that I’ve ever heard of that doesn’t pray. They may call it something different like a libation or offering but it all comes down to asking or thanking or even adoring the universe or a particular deity for something.

Maybe it’s because I was raised in the twilight between Presbyterianism/Church of Scotland and my grandmother’s instructions on living with the other beings seen and unseen that exist around us but I have always seen fit to pray.

If you are Christian, you know about Intercessory prayer or praying on behalf of someone, the real difference in Wicca is the fact that you must have permission from the person you are praying for to do it. Sometimes we might be tempted to do it unasked for but when looked at, the person may be using that thing you want to pray to get rid of as a crutch to get through life as warped as that may seem to you. It may be the only thing holding them up and that could be sickness, a political viewpoint, general negativity or a prejudice you want them to get rid of. If they lost that thing would their world collapse? It’s not our job to do it unless they ask for it. We have to remember to harm none even if we don’t like it.

But how else can we pray? I don’t know any pagans that haven’t lit incense. The ancients thought the smoke carried prayers to the gods. According to archeologists the first written prayers were recorded 5000 years ago. Humans have probably always had some form of prayer even if it was a form of “Feet, don’t fail me now” when being chased by a bear. There are many recorded prayers and hymns from the Greeks and Romans and other peoples.

Hymns and chants are forms of prayer. They can be sung as adoration or in thanks. We sing or say grace for nature’s bounty, that is prayer. We light candles with intention. We ring bells in Circle to call to the deities as invocation. Prayer doesn’t have to be words. Some of us have trouble with words but we can sing, drum or hold an image in our minds.

We don’t need to kneel, or be in submission on the floor, we don’t need to flagellate ourselves to obtain real or imagined needs to feel forgiven. We can take a walk in nature and send our consciousness out into the world to commune with our living world. We can sit in stillness and just be in our bodies. We can light incense and follow its path to the heavens. We can blow a bubble and fill it with our wishes and needs and let it go. We can write it out and burn or bury it and let it pass away into the earth. We can send it down a stream or out on the waves on a bark or origami boat. We can use the elements to pray.

When we pray it can be to our higher self, a specific deity, it can be to our ancestors for needed wisdom. We can pray to the universe, in general. We can pray to the Fae. We can request things of nature around us.

Sometimes we just have the need to express ourselves to something outside ourselves when we are feeling, whether that feeling be grief or joy, love or despair, hurt or healing and sometimes just because we are human on this earth, in this time and in this place. We pray.

Boudicca’s hare

From here I can see all across the fields to the Roman Legions. They stand there stiffly in their orderly squares.

I lie in her arms wrapped in her cloak of so many different colours. Her long red hair floats in the wind as she waits. I’m surrounded by the roars of the tribes.

She breathes deeply and looks around. These are her people. She is doing this for them and for my Goddess, Andraste.

She is well named for Boudicca means Victory and we will win today. We may not win every day but today we will. My goddess has decreed it. And still she stands waiting for the sun to be favourable to us and then she will let me go.

She will watch how I run for left is victory and right is loss. I will run left. I will run as fast as I can across the fields and into the arms of my goddess for I see her waiting for me. I know where to run because I watch for her to keep me safe.

Boudicca leans down and I’m off! Running as hard as I can, my sides heaving as I breathe. The Iceni and their comrades have become quiet watching me go.

I’m almost to Andraste when their spears start to fly. The noise roars higher and Boudicca’s people run at the Romans who are trembling in the turtle of their shields.

And it is done. I’m safe in Andraste’s arms. Safe to run again another day.

BunniHoTep and Ptah

Once upon a time BunniHotep was walking on Temple Row and came across Ptah. Ptah was staring at a half carved obelisk with a chisel in his hand and a puzzled look.

“What’s wrong, Ptah?” asked BunniHotep because something was quite obviously very wrong. Ptah usually looked very happy when he was going about his crafting tasks. It was his job to make and design all the art in the Temples. He had just finished Osiris’s lotus columns so this was very strange.

“I’m stuck,” he said with a sad voice. “I never get stuck and right in the middle of this obelisk too. I have to finish it and I have no idea how. My inspiration just flew away like that ibis there.” He added sadly. “That never happens to me. I have no idea what to write.” He looked even more dejected. Ptah was a god of few words so he had to be upset if he was going on this way. He saved his words for his work.

BunniHoTep decided she needed to shake Ptah’s lost inspiration loose. He had done a lot for her. He had spent a long time crouched down in rabbit-sized tunnels in her Temple carving and painting beautiful scenes. That had to have given him very big amounts of back pain and head bumps.  She had to help if just as a thank you for all his hard work.

“How did you get the idea for this obelisk in the first place?” she asked quietly.

“I don’t remember! It’s all gone.” Ptah was almost whining in frustration and this would never do. Gods do not whine!

BunniHoTep made an executive decision and grabbed Ptah’s arm with both her paws and tugged. “Let’s go for a walk. You need to get away from here.” She guided him off Temple Row. She thought Temple Row might be part of the problem. He rarely left it. How can you get an idea if you never go out?

So she walked him down to the docks on the Nile and they sat down and watched Ammit catch frogs for dinner. This aspect of her friendship with Ammit was a little hard to stomach but one makes allowances for friend’s oddities and it might help Ptah. They watched the ibises come and go from their nests, feeding their chicks. They watched the dragonflies buzz back and forth, their blues and oranges flashing brightly in the sun. She watched Ptah start to relax but he still had a sad expression on his face. So she tugged on him again and they continued on their walk.

She decided to walk him thru the Palace gardens, maybe that would help. They walked among the date palms and along the papyrus and lotus pools. They looked at the minnows darting back and forth catching insects for their suppers. They watched a vulture circle around over the desert in the distance. “He looks like he hasn’t a care in the world,” Ptah sighed.

“No, he looks like he’s found dinner,” BunniHotep said and hoped it was no one she knew but Ptah was seeming a bit brighter. “When was the last time you did something besides work for one of us?” She asked Ptah quietly.

“I don’t remember. Everyone keeps me so busy and I hate to say no.”

“Well, let’s make a bargain. Once a week we’ll take a walk off Temple Row. You don’t even have to speak to me when we walk, just be.” They kept walking and BunniHoTep smiled to herself at the small joke she had made. Thoth had made the rabbit hieroglyph the word “Be” and Ptah was too wound up to even remember.

“Let’s go watch the sunset over the Sphinxes. This time of year it goes right down the row of them and I like to watch it and then we can have supper.” Ptah nodded and they went and sat on the steps at the end of the row for their private show from Ra.

“You know something BunniHoTep? You gave me a big present. I think I can go back there tomorrow I know how to finish it. I think I’ll sketch it out tonight on papyrus so I won’t lose it but I know what to do now.” Ptah was very relaxed and smiling a bit now. He leaned back on his elbows and just watched to sun set.

Then the two friends got up and walked companionably back to Temple Row.

BunniHoTep and the real reason for the Flood

Ladyo 122

Once upon a time the moon was shining brightly out on the sandy, flat top of the mesa and a small rabbit came out to dance in the moonlight. BunniHotep was tired because people were not getting along and that made Her sad so She decided to do Her favourite thing in the whole world, Dance! BunniHoTep started to move slowly. She bowed in the direction of the Nile and She bowed to the desert and She danced. She danced slowly at first. Dipping and Spinning with Her paws out from Her sides and She danced because She felt the Earth move and the winds flow gently past Her.

She danced her joy at being alive in this body and in this beautiful place and as She danced something strange started to happen. Her joy moved through the world and the first one to feel it was Bast. Bast came running from Her Temple and She brought Her drum. Bast watched BunniHoTep and began to drum. Then the energy and love they brought to their dance moved farther out into the world and Hathor began to feel her foot tap.

Hathor said to Herself, “I need to Dance!” It had been so long since She danced and She was one of the goddesses whose dance helped make the world so She ran out to join the dance. As She ran to join the dance She grabbed Isis who had come out to see what was happening.

They joined the dance and the joy moved farther across the Earth. Next Ma’at and Nepthys and Nuit felt it and came running to join. They spun and dipped and whirled and stretched their arms out to the world and a strange thing began to happen.

The people began to smile. People who had not smiled in years smiled. They smiled at their neighbors. They smiled at strangers and still BunniHotep danced for joy.

Then other things began to happen as Bast drummed, women who had struggled at their labours gave birth easily and the children that were born were blessed with peace and joy all their lives. People who were sick and waiting to die, let go and went with peace and love surrounding them. The crops in the fields grew sturdy and would produce much food at harvest time. People who were fighting stopped and wondered why they had ever done it.

The beautiful night sky bloomed with stars overhead and people wished on the shooting stars and if their dreams weren’t selfish their wishes came true.

And still the Goddesses danced. A gentle rain came and caressed them and left to water the fields. Because Ma’at danced people who had not been fair to one another settled their differences.

And as the joy flooded the world the people understood about this great flood of love and peace and joy. History records a great flood and as man interprets these things in later years it was recorded as a bad thing because some people can not understand good and love in the world. The ones who wrote it down only knew that a Great Flood had come one night and changed the world. They never knew it was just the Goddesses dancing because they loved the World.

Flameshift

Hymn to Brighid

Brighid, Lady of flame
Forge of me a link
In the chain
Of strong women
Create a song in my heart
Help me heal with love

Sing me a song of flames
Sing me a song of hammer and anvil
Sing me a song of peace
Sing me a song of creation

Make me strong
Make me shiny
Make me tempered
Make me precious.

Sing me a song of flames
Sing me a song of hammer and anvil
Sing me a song of peace
Sing me a song of creation.

Use me to help
Use me to heal
Use me to create
Use me to make real

Sing me a song of morning
Sing me a song of night
Sing me a song of between times
Sing me a song of your light.

Kat – TOILA Brighid ritual 2001