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A pagan without a God(dess)

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Xentor View Post
    Hear hear. Not all of us Pagans have patron gods or even believe they exist. For instance, I happen to believe that the deity who created our universe sacrificed their own existence to spawn life, and I deem the worship of local deities unnecessary. When I call out, I hear myself responding. That is quite reassuring to me.
    And just because a Pagan may be polytheistic, believing in and worshipping a pantheon of many Gods and Goddesses, doesn't mean they have a "patron" deity. It's called Reconstructionism. On a specific Hellenic Recon forum recently, there's been a discussion about how a Recon's definition of "patron deity" would differ from a more typical Pagan definition, and basically, in HR, we worship the whole pantheon at appropriate times and any "bonus" worship directed at specific deities is part of either a)our professions (a carpenter or electrician may devote extra offerings to Hephaistos, a musician to Apollon, a stay-at-home mother to Hera, Rhea, Cybele, Aphrodite, and/or Hestia -- you get the picture), or b) reconstructed/modern-adapted cult worship (like, say, Odusseos' special reverence to Athene or Meneadic worship of Dionysos).

    Some HR people may use the term "patron deity" to refer to their .. extra-curricular reverence informally and amongst people who know what we mean by it (other HR's, our best friends, etc...), but in mixed company, especially mixed Pagan company, even those who use "patron" informally with other HR's prefer to avoid it because it conveys this idea that either a) we think we're "special buddies" of X-Deity, or b) we're "crazy schizophrenics" (for lack of a better term). We (and I'm speaking generally here) as HR generally believe that A is hubris (excessive pride at the expense of insulting others and, most importantly, the Gods) and that B is a symptom of a person being unable to differentiate gnosis from wishful-thinking that they're actually having a one-on-one with the God in question.

    Now, HR's also don't typically believe in belittling another's beliefs, no matter how far against our own those beliefs are (though, there are a few HR people I can think of... oh boy... let me tell you, Internet...), simply because that's just impolite -- and if you want to do a search for one of our sacred texts, one of the Maxims of Delphi states "Speak kindly of everyone", and while HR's generally tend to agree that these Maxims are man-made, we also acknowledge that they were inspired by the Gods, and thus should be taken a little more seriously than Naked Lunch.


    • #17
      I think we've all been in your shoes at some point.

      Something I did was sit down and write out my thoughts. It's harder than you would think. I asked myself - What is god/goddess to me? I forced myself to answer honestly and discovered I didn't believe it was an actual transcendent diety at all.

      Ask yourself many questions, and be honest. What is important to you in this world? What places, what objects, what living or non-living things?

      Sometimes we want to find our place so badly that our truest, inner thoughts and beliefs get a bit buried by all the information we're trying to take in. That was certainly the case for me.

      Once I cleared my mind and allowed myself to be honest and accepting of my beliefs I did find myself and my path.

      I am also a pantheist but consider myself pagan also. A pagan pantheist. However, I don't feel boxed by either of those words and simply use them to try and describe my general beliefs. Down to the details, my path is my own and has no name.

      I believe once you give yourself some breathing room and clear your mind, you will find your path and your diety if that is what fits you.

      Remember, your path is for you to walk, not to be led down.


      • #18
        "" Remember, your path is for you to walk, not to be led down""

        lovin that statement:uhhuhuh:
        Enter Her World
        ~Jaqueline Frost touches the flowers~



        • #19
          Also think about what you expect out of a relationship with deity. Some might think that they get a patron deity and their path is now spelled out for them, it will now be a no-brainer as long as they can claim a deity. It takes work, sacrifice (whether through time, self education, offering homemade crafts, etc.), it can be very demanding, and deep down, you may not be ready for that if your life is already extremely busy. You said that you've tried to make retreat weekends for yourself, but something always comes seems to me that you are all too willing to let your mundane life get in the way of something that you say is very important to you. Perhaps the gods are responding to that message, that you aren't ready to make time for a deity in your life.
          Pagan Tart, High Priestess of the Soli-Tarty Path

          My heroes have always been cowboys, and they still are, it seems
          Always in search of, and one step in back of,
          Themselves and their slow-movin' dreams
          ~Willie Nelson~



          • #20
            I do understand where you are coming from. I have been a Pagan for about 11 years and I still do not have a real patron. I have deities that I work with frequently but I don't believe that I am under their patronage...yet. However there does seem to be this attitude that in order to have a patron on has to sit back and wait for this profound experience to happen to you. The problem with that is that if it doesn't happen to you, you feel as if the gods don't want you or something. Why not get a little proactive? Find a God/dess that you admire and leave an offering and ask them for patronage? If you feel that the answer is yes then build an altar to them and invite them to meditations/ rituals etc. I believe that this approach is just as valid as any other. Good luck!


            • #21
              Originally posted by Rudas Starblaze View Post
              dude!! you have my cell phone # and youve been here! what more connection do ye need!?
              LOL! Oh Lawd, wes in trouble now! :giggle:

              Love ya little Bro!

              On a Side note:

              If you feel a desire to connect do a little research and see if you can try a guided meditation and ask for contact. Perhaps they are not aware that you wish contact or to establish a connection. Just try talking like you would with a person and see if anything happens from there. Bare in mind that I am from a Hoodoo stand point and that tends to make me pretty practical. Sometimes all it takes is you just saying the words out loud
              Last edited by Teresa; August 4th, 2008, 06:16 PM.
              ~Magic and Rituals & Advanced Paganism Forum Guide~
              ~Paths: Palo, Santeria, Hoodoo, Voodoo Forum Guide~
              Thanks Catiana and Athena-Nadine for the beautiful banners!

              I am the daughter of earth and water, and nursling of the sky; I pass through the pores of the ocean and shores; I change but cannot die.{Percy Bysshe Shelley}

              RIP Tony
              05/25/67 - 06/22/08
              You are my Angel


              • #22
                You don't have to have a patron deity to be pagan. Paganism is a very broad path, which also encompasses those paths that do not have specific belief in god(s) but who still hold a reverence for nature, or practice energy work, or a number of things.

                However, if you find yourself yearning to be associated with a god/dess, try researching god/desses. Eventually one of them will stand out to you. You could try contacting that deity.

                If nothing comes of it... eventually, someone will "pick on" you. Give it time, leave your spiritual schedule "open". All things in good time.
                "The cosmos is also within us, we're made of star stuff.
                We are a way for the cosmos to know itself."

                Carl Sagan, as quoted by The Symphony of Science