As I’ve said before, I’m a deity collector. I never wanted to be. I remember starting out and being new and excited, but never wanting more than a few relationships with pointed gods, namely the relationship I have with Sekhmet. I never wanted to incorporate anyone else into my practice, in all honesty; I wanted to be a “Sekhmet kid for life.” And while I am that, I have had my “phone number listed.” Due to this, I don’t usually have a lot of choice in whether or not gods come a-calling, although I have a lot of choice in whether or not I allow them to hang about or I actively begin cultivating relationships with them. Here are the stories of two “trickster deities” and my choices therein.
A good year and a half prior to my relationship with Hekate, Hermes had been pulling his King Troll Extraordinaire routine with me. The Sister began working with him in late 2010. Her relationship is exceedingly UPG and one of the items that he had requested of her was to pick up feathers in her path. Now, normally, feathers aren’t a huge omen thing as birds are, well, everywhere. However, this girl finds the most random feathers in her path at times of the year when such feathers should not be out and about. Around the time she began this little exercise, he began sending me feathers here and there. Now, I knew it was just a game to him – I would go over to her home and pay my respects to her Hermes altar, “hear” things from him on her behalf, and whatnot. But even with all that communication going on, I was always very sure to tell him, “Thank you but no. I am a solid Kemetic.” Er, well, if we ignore the whole lwa thing.
I think he started really trolling me because he found my stance in regards to Hellenic deities to be amusing. I am not a fan of theirs. When I began working with Hekate, it took me a lot less time than I had expected to get used to the difference in “godphone frequencies.” This, however, opened me up to more trolling from Hermes. The moment I put up an altar for the working I would do with Hekate, he began coming over on a fairly regular basis.
Now, while he has a lot of serious qualities, the Hermes I tended to see and hear was not very serious at all. It’s all a game to him, really, with me. “Let’s see what she does this time,” sort of a thing. I tend to view it as a child’s desire for attention, meaning that they will do both good things and bad things to gain that attention. In Hermes’s mind and my own, I began to see what he would do to me as a kind of “any attention is good attention.” So, when he began ice-skating around my house or tap-dancing in my kitchen screaming, “tea for two, two for tea,” I did my best to ignore it.
One would assume that with a god making themselves known like this then the next step would be to cultivate a relationship. And in some instances, I have to agree. However, not in my instances. When it was recommended that I begin working with Persephone for other shadow work items, I refused. When Hermes showed up with messages from Athena, I said no. It’s not that I am offering them disrespect – in a way, I am very much flattered by the willingness of these deities to work with me. However, Hellenic deities and I are not a matched pair. I have never had a thing for deities outside of the Kemetic pantheon, even as a child, aside from a very serious and odd obsession with deities of death, tricksters, and destructive deities. Even with my desires to know more about these types of deities, I still prohibit myself within my pantheon.
Er. Aside from the lwa thing.
After I refused Athena and Hekate packed up, I can honestly say that Hermes’s influence in my life has faded. Even when speaking about him with the Sister, he has not shown up. There have been no feathers in my path. I have not seen him ice-skating around my house, I have not lost my keys from the hook they hang on, and I can honestly say that I believe his trolling behavior is at an end.
Of course, this whole path stuff isn’t so easy as “farewell.” Oh, no, no, no. Just because one trickster leaves does not mean that another one won’t show up.
Towards the end of King Troll Extraordinaire’s reign in my life, I began getting extensive “feels” from Djehuti. One would assume that I would know a thing or three about him. As a deity whose epithets include who gave words and writing, lord of writing, mighty in his words, and lord of speech, one would almost assume that he would have been a patron of mine – regarding my lackluster writing “career” – already at this point. However, I was very serious when I mentioned above that I wanted only to be in a relationship with Sekhmet. I didn’t seek him out because, in all honesty, I held more to a “muses inspire” paradigm in my writing than anything else. Since his appearance in my life, I’ve obviously and rapidly begun to amend my thoughts on this matter.
At the end of February, I began getting nearly daily calls from a “pay us $500 to publish your stuff” place that I had never heard of. It’s possible I signed up for this stuff when I was still living at my in-laws’ home, however the fact that the calls began around the time I noticed I had begun surrounding my Tumblr persona with Djehuti kids began to make me go, “hm.” Around that time, my daily rune began to make me ask questions and when someone very helpfully did a supplementary reading, it was entirely around “writing.” Okay. Well, that’s just coincidence… until another friend of mine wrote about how I needed to start writing books beyond the 101 in the areas of voodoo and Kemeticism and everywhere in between. And that’s about the time that I had the light click on.The solid moment when I knew I couldn’t quite ignore him anymore was when I saw the image to the left. I had tried something a little different in my daily routine since I had issues with spoon management and being allowed to blog. I had asked for his input on Tumblr, gone into the Sekhmet tag, and found the image as shown. (It wasn’t sourced on Tumblr and I don’t honestly know how to do the reverse source thingamajig.) Anyway, when I saw this, it really spoke to me. I can’t quite say if this image is trying to tell me anything more than Sekhmet wants him around for me or if there’s more to it than that. It doesn’t really matter, he’s here and I’ve accepted that… or as much as a person like me can accept such things.
I have to admit that when it has come to working with other gods, I often will refuse a time or twenty before I finally give in. The differences here aren’t just about the pantheons specific to each deity, but also about the roll they would have in my life. While I may not have spelled it out, my relationship with Hermes would be about cooling off, calming down, and more frenetic. It would also be inherently specific to his messenger service. As he did with Athena, I knew that embracing him in my life would leave me open for all manner of other Hellenic deities. And that is not something I can or will accept. I have a love-hate relationship with most Hellenic deities – for UPG reasons – and besides, Sekhmet has never lifted her “no Mediterranean pantheons” restriction from me.
As far as Djehuti is concerned, while I know he has trickster aspects not just from what he’s done with me but from other followers of his, I also know that he can and will get serious when the time comes. As I don’t know if this is a life-long or just-now type of relationship, I’m in the “wait and see” kind of mode. All I know is that watching an ibis-headed man walk around my apartment in a pinstripe suit, looking about as suave as can be possible, is quite a break from the norm.