Thoughts Begin Roaming So Late at Night…

I read a lot of historical fiction set in ancient Egypt and have for years. At first, it was just a means to an end: my mind had grown too sleepy with the knowledge I was taking in but I still wanted to be there. So, I would pick up historical fiction and read away. But now, this is another way for me to connect with my gods. After reading a long set of text or a few chapters, I can sometimes feel like I’m wandering the desert beside my goddess, hand-in-hand. Different books cause different reactions, but it aids me to see and feel them better, I believe. It’s an interesting topic. Anyway, the following quote is from Throne of Isis by Judith Tarr, found on the top of page 46.

“But,” he said, “such things need order—ritual—sacrifice—”

“I am the rite and the sacrifice,” said Dione. “She’s never needed more than that. And why should she? She’s a goddess. She can do whatever she pleases.”

For some reason, this quote really made my insides sing with the feeling of something important.

I’ve always looked at various pantheons and seen them as different.

Whenever I think the Norse gods, not that I know anything about them, my focus is entirely on a strong-willed, battle-hewn pantheon. Is this even remotely correct? I don’t know because I don’t work with them, but this is the perception that I have of them. I’ve looked to the Celtic pantheon and I’ve always seen them as… watery and light. They’re material aspects, but they live in a different plain entirely. Is this in any way true? I don’t know. None of them have ever looked my way and I’ve never looked in their direction, either. The Romans have always been immaterial shadow figures that reign supreme, but only in the name of ritual and rites, of words. Is this true? I don’t know. I’ve never been interested in learning about them. Whenever I have looked to the Greek pantheon, I have always seen them as emotional stock that live and fight by said emotions. Is this accurate? I don’t know because I do not work with them, either. But, I’ve seen the reactions Aphrodite has given to my patron around things that she disagrees with or what Hermes has done with and for her, and my opinion still remains: over emotional.

I’ve always been content and satisfied with the Egyptian pantheon because they are remote, but kind and gentle. Yes, there are members of this pantheon who can live by their emotions or who are more likely towards battle. Yes, there are members of this pantheon who live more closely amongst the humans and still others who have pulled entirely away from the human race, or at least mostly. But, I’ve always seen the gods of my pantheon and said to myself, “This is my kind. These are my people.” And the reason being that because they do not live by their emotions, because they are removed and yet not, because they are in many ways like me and teach me to strive to live so heavily with ma’at.

However, this passage made me think more clearly about something I said in my Ganesha entry:

The lesson, really, is that they’re people, too…

I think that’s why the initial passage that I quoted above rang so supreme with me. As ever, as always, I am constantly learning new and innovative things about my goddess and about my pantheon. As ever, as always, I am ringing more truly with the things they want me to have as part of my life. And it is at this moment, after having said what I did in that entry and after having read the passage above (over and over again) that I am beginning to understand that as remote or cold or battle-infested as I think other gods and goddesses may be, they are all people, too.

The thing is that this passage rang the bell deep within me—more a gong, really—not just because of its relation to my perception of various gods and pantheons. This is an important lesson that, I feel, isn’t quite complete. But, there was something else about it that made me sit up and take notice. It was an aspect that spoke to the path I walk in this realm of spirituality, of religion. And it’s interesting that a historical fiction book, of all things, could make me take so much notice. It’s important, though, I think in that it’s been an ongoing thought process in the back of my mind since I began writing about path forging this week. It’s been something that’s been interesting and important and working itself out. But it was at the reading of my fictional book by Judith Tarr that it kind of came together to coalesce properly.

“But,” he said, “such things need order—ritual—sacrifice—”

“I am the rite and the sacrifice,” said Dione. “She’s never needed more than that. And why should she? She’s a goddess. She can do whatever she pleases.”

I’ve been focused a lot on the rites, the holidays, the rituals that I wish to perform to honor my gods. This may be a large part to paganism, as a whole, although I couldn’t say for sure since it’s just me over here in my neck of the woods. It’s been since forever that I’ve always wanted to do dances and songs and prayers and words to them that make their spirits soar and sing with the knowledge that they are remembered, that they are known, and that they are loved. But it’s now that I’ve read this and let it sink in overnight. It’s now that I’ve contemplated it over two cups of coffee, a cigarette, and while staring off into space. It’s now that I realize that I had it all wrong.

The rites, the rituals aren’t the important part.

I’m not trying to belittle anyone who does perform these aspects in their religious practice. As I’ve said, I know that most members of the KO will do a daily rite or a weekly rite to honor their gods. I think it’s fantastic and wonderful that they have such commitment and dedication. I know, still others, who do not participate in the KO, but who hold similar rites on a regular basis to honor their gods, as well. And while I enjoy reading about it. And I enjoy knowing that there are people who are dedicated. I love knowing that there are people who are willing to commit in the world and that they are honoring the same deities that I do, it’s with the above mentioned thought that I move into the realm of epiphany…

…the important part is the love.

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15 thoughts on “Thoughts Begin Roaming So Late at Night…

  1. I can only speak for Norse and Egyptian in my working with them. For the Norse, there is so much depth to the Norse Pantheon and much of it has nothing to do with Fighting. Of the most powerful magick that I personally practice is that of Seidh Magick. Seidh is shamanic, shapeshifting, oracular…..

    I would say that in order to understand the Norse magickal path one should get to know the Nine Noble Virtues. It is the nutshell version of what the Norse and their Gods are all about.

    • Honestly, I’ve never been drawn to other pantheons. Whenever I’m asked how I got started on the Egyptian path, I either say, “It fell in my life,” or “it was a no brainer; a rabid obsession since childhood coupled with religion.” But, it’s dawned on me that I’m being biased because of both of those responses. It’s just… something that I need to start thinking about and considering and dealing with.

      The Nine Noble Virtues. Got it. I’ll look into it.

  2. As one of those people who regularly does senut, this is interesting. On some level the Gods/Netjer/etc. don’t necessarily need the rituals, true. They are part of being manifest in the Seen world, perhaps. They are also a very good way of building up the relationship. I think that’s actually a big point of senut: forging that connection.

    • Ah. I’ve never seen it that way. More, I’ve viewed in the light of something new and exciting followed by dragging followed by boring followed by despairing. I think the reason is because I’ve been forging me relationship with Sekhmet for so many years now that in doing something like senut, I’m rehashing things that I’ve already (A) tried or (B) done. I don’t know. It’s all very convoluted in my brain, but you’ve gotten me thinking and that’s awesome.

      Thank you for your comment!

  3. Yes, so very much yes. The rituals and stuff are good to know, but we do need to remember the Gods are people in and of themselves. My own practice has been starting to grow this way as well, as of late.

    • There have been a lot of people whose practices have been heading in this direction lately. It’s actually kind of neat to watch it ebb and flow this way. :)

      I really like the idea of intricate, huge rituals that bring me closer to my gods, honestly. I always have and that may be why I was drawn to this path in the first place. But I know I do not have the patience for such things. I try to live as simply and easily as I can (though this isn’t always the case). And I have no memory for complex words and movements. So, it’s with that in mind that I realize that while I’d love something big and huge, it’s just not me. And the best part being that my goddess doesn’t need it.

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