I have been with the Pagan community for nearly a decade, notably unguided. I have been fortunate to find friends who are Pagan or open to pagan thought. In that time, I have become a mentor to many of them.
Our Coven recently went through an ideological split during a time when we were trying to restructure. This split made some things better and some things worse.
Throughout the split and in the time since, many of the members have been struggling with their faith. I had been doing the best I could to regain some manner of order, to prevent the crisis of faith that would allow such a split to happen; but I ultimately failed. As such, I was stuck with many practitioners looking for something to do and a declining faith to do it with.
As a result, I sent out the following, and after realizing that others in the community may need to hear these words, I have chosen to also post it here:
I feel compelled to say something as many have made it known they are feeling low. There is but one thing that has remained true for me these past nine years, the nine years which I have followed my path. That one thing is this: my life, however meaningless, mundane, boring, and painful it is now, will come to mean something in the end.
What I mean to say is this: You have been placed upon this earth for a reason. That reason is known to someone but will be kept from you until the time of your death. I believe that at this point, you will reflect upon that life and come to the same understanding that so many before have. That understanding will be unique to you and your own experience, but will go something like this:
I made a difference. I changed a life, and so, I changed the world.
How have you changed someone today? Have you yet or will it be later in the day? Did you teach them a skill, or help them with a task? Did you learn something that will later save lives?
When it all seems so pointless to you, think about the bigger picture.
I once found myself asking my God for just one thing: There are very few things that we do in life that we set out to do. In the end, it’s the little things that gain us the profound legacy that we all yearn for. The one thing that we all manage is the one that we may never see. That achievement is the difference that we make in another human being.
If in your life, you make a difference in one person’s life, then you may die with a legacy. If we teach a skill we leave a larger legacy. If we listen to a problem, we have created a solution. It’s the little difference that we make that lend a hand to large means.
If there were one thing that I could ask my lord for, one thing above all else, it would be to make a difference, if only one person at a time. I would die having been fulfilled in life. The difference is my wish, my dream, and my will.
In a bit more specific request, I will leave you with this: I was born and baptized Lutheran, and still hold some beliefs of that faith. Jehovah and I still chat about my problems, but Odin has taken me in and taught me.
The relationship you have with your god is personal, on which is never to be questioned by another. But we are complex individuals, and just as we have a handful of doctors for each special problem, we too have a hand full of gods waiting to grant us powers. So long as we believe in them then the depth of the relationship is irrelevant. The links exist.
Faith, and in turn religion, exist in a part of us that is neither logical nor understandable. Our Gods make it logical and understandable. They help to fill the void we feel, the feeling of security, feelings of safety. Next time you are alone and afraid, feel the presence of your God all around you and experience a new feeling of safety.
It is safety and security that we all yearn for. The millionaire behind the multi million dollar security system has the same security that I have with my God. Odin has my back, so to speak. That’s not to say that he will never let me get hurt, never let me feel sorrow. He will not save me from the grasp of all things evil. He will keep me safe though, when it counts.
That narrow miss by the car on the road, running five minutes late and avoiding a wreck. He will keep me safe when it counts.
One thing we must all remember is that the love that our hearts have for our Gods must not be perfect, but it must be forgiving. Our Gods have Their purpose for us and They will get us there however best They can. We just need to have faith in the end and the means will fall in to place.
For those of you clutching at straws, examine what you have done, and what you can be doing.
For those of you clutching at faith, keep with it and it will keep with you.
From one troubled person to another, blessed be on this night.
This message was just what my practitioners need to pick up the pieces and get back together. I felt it was important to share this with the rest of you and maybe I can help some one else.
Our future lies with in our Gods and us.
My legacy is still to be writ as is all of ours. Let us then be together in our community of faith. I hope this allows someone to make the decision they had been putting off.
‘Till I find deem it necessary to write again,
Order of the Gual
Temple of Odin