Rooted in experience

Cat Chapin-Bishop asks us to tell all in her post on The Wild Hunt…

“Don’t tell me how your tradition draws down the moon or performs a proper blot… Don’t tell me that Paganism celebrates the body and honors sexuality… Don’t tell me that community is important in Paganism… Don’t tell me that Pagans find our gods in nature… Give me your experience. Give me the marrow and the meat of your spiritual life. Because, unless you write it down, no one else ever will. Only from you can I receive this gift: your own lived Pagan journey.”

Oooh, this is my kind of pagan question..

I partly covered the question about community in Unca Tom’s Coven Part I and Part II.

I have no tradition so there is no proper blot. Although I do believe in being properly prepared in whatever way you deem proper. Part of that came from my experience with Unca Tom’s Coven. Part of it came with my trainings in Leon’s Outer Grove. Great stuff, all of it. But I just can’t seem to get down and funky with the rules. So I tread my path, eyes open, eyes closed, feet on the edge, heart in the stars… ever the fool.

Stephanie Pui-Mun Law’s Tarot Fool

Looking in at the communities and not sure I fit there any more than I’ve fit anywhere else in this or any other lifetime. It doesn’t seem to be important for me, at least not in the sense that I can’t have my circle. I still get to have my paganism without my community. But it is a lonely circle some times. As for the sexuality, yeah, that is totally lonely. I’d settle for being able to celebrate my spiritual delight with just one other person. Just one. And to do it in a totally groovy juicy sexual way.

I can tell you that hanging out naked in our local community’s swimming pool with other naked pagans has helped me immensely with my body image. While folks might have been staring surepticiously each other, I only remember the guy who noticed that I had lost the knowledge of how to interact with gravity when I left the pool after a particularly long soak with my lover. I felt comfortable. But I have no need to venture into the Aphrodite and Pan Groves. I leave that stuff to the sacred privacy of my cottage in the woods and the woods themselves.

The pool seems lonely now.

I can tell you how I find my gods in nature.

I remember a hot day one summer long, long ago and yes, far, far away, walking along the dirt drive from the cabin to the point to commune with the waves, seals, and wind. The drive is overhung with bows from the myriad trees and the sun was dappled and fluid and happy. My dog Isis, She Who Is Missed Most Dearly, was sniffing along looking for goodness knows what. The insects were humming and chirruping and suddenly I saw him. A three point stag. Just off the road, about 10 feet from me. In the deep shadow. I stopped in my tracks and time stood still. I looked at him and he looked at me. I looked forward and so did he and when we turned back we were both still there. The heat of the day was gone, the bugs were gone, Isis was elsewhere, and I just knew that he was showing himself to me in all his strong nobility.

And suddenly the long moment was over. The sun came back, I could hear the clicks of beetles, and Isis was right where she’d been before, completely oblivious to the fact that she was 15 feet from a stag. Never caught a whiff. But I did.

I can’t tell you what was said although much was. I can’t tell you why it meant so much to me. I can’t tell you why I knew my path. I knew it would be crooked. I knew that male energy, presence, fitness, and lusty ruttyness. And I knew I wanted that in my life. I can tell you that sometimes I catch him watching me when I go back there. And so it has been.

She visited me one night at that same cabin. I was still smoking at that time and I’d gone out onto the porch to do so. It is very dark at the cabin. Starlight. Moonlight sometimes. When I sat down I couldn’t see a darned thing. But I heard something. A rustle. I stopped moving, breathing, and tried to will my eyes to see. Scared to death that the vampires were coming. And then She moved into the moonlight with her fawn. I followed them across the meadow in the dark full moonlight flitting behind trees and shadows as they meandered to the path that takes them into the woods. I knew. And so it has been.

I dreamt She suckled me at her deer furred breast when the creek bed dried up. And so it has been.

He came to me in a dream flash of sunlight, Lugh, Lord of Light, Dianus, and took me to places I didn’t know I could go. And so it has been.

The meditation one Beltaine to visit the Spring Maiden Goddess when the King came out from under the stairs and told me that it was nothing without both of them. I love you. And so it has been.

The memories bring me to tears. Nothing in any book as taught me much of anything that brought meaning to my life. Everything has been brought by simply living my life. Sacred days.

4 thoughts on “Rooted in experience

  1. this was a beautiful read. I truly feel our experiences far outweigh anything else that might be written or ruled or legislated by officiality đŸ™‚

    No one can take these sacred moments away from you. And no one could give them to you but that your own soul called them in.

    Yes. And it’s why I don’t mind that much that there aren’t more higher level pagan books out there. What can it really teach you if you don’t simply sit under the tree and listen?

  2. Ah, lovely. Thank you for sharing. (I’ll be back to read more later–those Unca Tom’s Cabin posts, at the very least!)

    I’ve gone ahead and posted this to MetaPagan, in hopes that others will also enjoy it as I did.

    I’m honored! I’ve read your blog off and on for some time. In fact I was reading it yesterday and your post about maybe not being a pagan and who actually reads your blog. *I* read it because I enjoy it but I have missed the continuing tale of your pagan life… My mother is quaker and also considers herself to be a pagan. The other reason your blog caught my eye.

  3. I love this. This post by Cat C-B struck a chord with many of us, I think. Your sharing of your experience was truly beautiful. Thank you, Beweaver!

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