When I think of the Ancient, Immortal Gods, I think of beings who inspired so much fear in the hearts of men, that many men would sacrifice their own blood in order for the sun to rise another day. The human ambassadors to such deities required years of training and spiritual purification before they could even begin to properly divine the will of the Gods – let alone make requests. It is said that the Celtic Druids trained for 19 years for this feat.
Today, the internet is abound with spells promising love and success after muttering a haiku. “Buy this spell and a 16th generation witch will conjure a porsche filled with stacks of money in your lawn!” You’ve all seen the ads. Much of our society revolves around the willow wisp promise of self gratification through little effort and time – therefore, some forms of modern magic attempt to do the same.
However, a Hellenist woman I interviewed in the past had a great response to this. “The Gods are not our personal errand boys.”
This is not to say that we shouldn’t attempt an interaction with the Gods or Nature. A spiritual reconnection is vitally important for the people of our time! However, what I’m trying to articulate here, is that some folks tread down the path of Paganism and Earth Based spirituality with some erroneous expectations.
In meditating on the matter, we have to ask ourselves, what is the purpose of spirituality?
In this blog, perhaps it is not my role to tell you what you can and can’t do with your spirituality.
However, I think it is useful to ask yourself why you are spiritual? What draws you to the Gods?
One reason people tell me they’re not spiritual is because they never get what they pray for, spirituality doesn’t have the “desired results.” When the “place in the oven for 3 minutes and reheat” tactic of spirituality doesn’t work for some individuals, they abandon the spiritual world altogether. But of course, these individuals set themselves up for failure because they had the wrong expectations to begin with.
In my opinion, spirituality shouldn’t be about what the Gods do for you.
Spirituality should be a process of purifying yourself and making yourself worthy of the Gods presence.
Throughout history, the different spiritualities of the world required the following attributes of a practitioner:
The mentioned steps above were required more so for a religious priest or priestess of sorts. Yet even laymen found ways to include these attributes into their life.
For example, if someone prays everyday for a Hummer and doesn’t get it, they will declare there are no Gods/God. If someone prays everyday for world peace, only to face the cold, harsh reality of a cruel world filled with suffering – they may also declare that there are no Gods/God and that they are alone in a cruel world.
However, deep change occurs at the subconscious level. Through sacrifice, prayer, meditation, establishing bonds with a community and enforcing self discipline we change ourselves at a deep level. We put ourselves through a process of purification like a sword being tempered by a steady flame.
By becoming more spiritual, you align yourself with what is actually important in life and place yourself on the path towards achieving that goal.
The Gods aren’t your personal errand boys in a quest of your choosing. They are the embodiment of timeless truths and nature’s power – and you mere mortal, are a part of a quest of their choosing.