Posted by solowytch
There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.
And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)
Today’s question is:
Do I work with deities? If yes, who and why? In not, why not?
Define “work with.”
Are there deities that I worship, that I make offerings to, give thanks and praise to, and ask for Their assistance?
Do I ask Them to do things for me (other than protection, or giving me the strength, courage, and knowledge to handle challenges)?
Do I use Them when I’m casting a spell?
Because They are my deities, not my familiar spirits, or members of my (non-existent) coven.
But do I pray to Them and meditate on Them?
Yes, of course I do. I seek Their guidance and counsel, either through prayer and meditation or through divination or just staying open to signs in the outer world.
(Note: not everything you see is a sign. And if you ask for one, being specific is a good idea so you know that you’ve been answered.)
As for which deities, I am primarily Hellenic in orientation, with special devotions to Apollo, Hermes, Athena, and Artemis.
The answer to that might fill a book or two or three or…
Athena for Her wisdom and courage. When I need strength to fight a battle She is the one I turn to. When I am truly angry I’m probably closer to Ares in nature, and She provides the calmness, logic, and rational outlook that I need to temper my temper. “Revenge is a dish best served cold” and She keeps me from burning it.
Artemis because She is both huntress and protectress of the wilderness, and it is in the latter aspect that She calls to me. I was raised in an area where hunting is almost a way of life, but so is respect for and conservation of the wilderness. Both of my maternal grandparents were very big on conservation, so Artemis is a natural (pardon the pun) choice for me.
Apollo… What can I say? God of the sun, music, poetry, prophecy, healing (and also pestilence) from the very first I was drawn to Him, perhaps because I used to write a lot of poetry. (Hey! I was in high school. That made a lot more sense as a reason to choose a deity then than it does now, but even so, looking back I can see His presence and guidance throughout my life ever since.)
Hermes is a more recent addition to my life, I think stemming from when I worked at the jail. A friend and I were having a conversation (an email exchange, actually) and he commented that the jail was very much an “underworld” type of place. Hermes journeys freely between all the realms – Olympus, Earth, and Hades. Hermes is also the god of thieves – and of protection from thieves. He is also the patron of travelers and I was doing a lot of driving back then.
Outside of the Greek deities, I have a fondness for Kwan Yin, “She Who Hears the Cries of the World” because if there is anything this entire world needs it is more compassion.
And Blodeuwedd. Her story spoke to me from the first moment I heard it. (Years ago I read a quote attributed to Muhammad Ali (“I don’t have to be what you want me to be.”) and when I first learned of Blodeuwedd that quote came to mind because She is the embodiment of it.
And there you have it: the deities that hold a special place in my life. My life would be much the poorer without Their presence.
(If you would like more information on the Greek myths and deities, I recommend The Theoi Project.)