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Author Topic: Daily practices becoming too automatic  (Read 2442 times)
Arienwen
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« Topic Start: February 20, 2011, 05:41:52 pm »

For the past 6 months or so I have developed daily rituals to honor my Patron Goddess Aphrodite.  They used to be somewhat involved and completely sincere.  However, for the past month I have backslid on the offerings, some days forgetting altogether.  I'm not sure if this is due to boredom in my regular life.  I feel guilty, but at the same time I feel as if I don't have enough energy to do much more than light the daily candle and burn some incense.  Periodically, I will also give her other offerings, but for the most part the candle and the incense is it. 

Does anyone have any ideas to get me out of this slump?
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« Reply #1: February 20, 2011, 06:09:36 pm »

For the past 6 months or so I have developed daily rituals to honor my Patron Goddess Aphrodite.  They used to be somewhat involved and completely sincere.  However, for the past month I have backslid on the offerings, some days forgetting altogether.  I'm not sure if this is due to boredom in my regular life.  I feel guilty, but at the same time I feel as if I don't have enough energy to do much more than light the daily candle and burn some incense.  Periodically, I will also give her other offerings, but for the most part the candle and the incense is it. 

Does anyone have any ideas to get me out of this slump?

I do a daily ritual to honor my deities, and all I do is light a candle and meditate for a few minutes, and offer some praise and prayers. I usually offer libation or grain or incense. and then after that I blow out the candle. Then go about my day
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« Reply #2: February 20, 2011, 07:40:58 pm »

Does anyone have any ideas to get me out of this slump?

You know that I was having similar issue.

I've decided to revamp my practice a little bit. Candle lighting will be done everyday but other offerings of food, herbs, and incense will only be done once a week. That way, I will put more thought and time and energy into it.
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« Reply #3: February 24, 2011, 08:45:17 pm »

I believe that there is nothing more hurtful to your own faith and disrespectful to your Gods than just going through the motions or it being automatic. The best thing to do is to scrap your routine and make a new kind of offering and prayers everyday. Try traveling to places you feel close to your God and meditating or praying there instead. The quickest way to lose your faith is to allow it to become automatic. I only give praise or worship when it feels inspired. If you are worried that your rituals have become meaningless then focus on what the meaning is and what kind of affect on your life those rituals have.
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« Reply #4: February 24, 2011, 09:00:23 pm »

The quickest way to lose your faith is to allow it to become automatic.

Not necessarily.

It's normal for people with a regular spiritual practice to go through dry spells, or "dark nights of the soul."  My practice is daily without exception and I've had to work through these periods.  I don't stop because of them.  Instead, I re-examine my practice and decide what I can do to make things better.  I went through a bad one recently and had to re-group and re-commit.  Then things felt all warm and fuzzy for a week.  Now they're kind of normal again, "normal" meaning peaceful and centering but not really intense. 

One doesn't have to change things up or take a break to prevent things from becoming "too automatic."   There are certain acts I have to perform every day.   I can add to these practices but I can't subtract.  Adding music or parts of hymns has helped,  But what about the stuff I can't change?  I can stop to think about what those words meant to me, and why I started saying them in the first place.  I can say the words slowly and contemplatively so I'm not just going through the motions.

Most people don't have the same agreement with their Gods that I have (I'm odd) Still,  I think some of these same strategies might apply to people who have gotten into a rut, even if their practice is weekly rather than daily.

Or not.  Some people have relationships with their Gods where it's OK to only practice when it feels right.  I think it's just a matter of periodically re-assessing what you, and your Gods want out of the arrangement.  If you're formally dedicated, then this re-assessment might be comparable to couples counseling.  That means exhausting all efforts to fix the situation before deciding to call it quits. 
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« Reply #5: June 27, 2011, 03:30:14 am »


This is something I noticed when I went to church regularly... things can become so routine that there is NO thought put into the rituals. For me, I used to fall into the trap of "Why do you go to church?" "because it's Sunday" instead of "because I want to worship and praise my Divine Creator". (Btw, not trying to pick on church-going Christians, it's just what I'm familiar with).

I find that for myself, I have to do a regular check up on my ritual practices so I don't keep falling into this trap. At the same time, Christians have what we call a "mountain-top experience" where everything is intense and feels right there! (Usually at a retreat or summer camp where we can focus totally on the Divine). Then we come down the mountain, back to our mundane tasks and jobs. It's difficult to continuously feel close and connected all the time... but it's up to the individual how to deal with that. Is your Divine ok with just lighting a candle and incense or are you expected to do more? Can you use this slump to learn more about your spirituality? Like where your energy is if not in your daily worship? Do you need to spend more time on yourself so you have more energy?

These are just speculations and you may have already come to a conclusion about solving your slump... But I really liked what Nehet wrote and wanted to add my 2 cents  Smiley
« Last Edit: June 27, 2011, 03:33:07 am by Skydaughter, Reason: I typed the wrong username for the answer that I liked » Logged

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