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Author Topic: Can relationships with gods be...fun?  (Read 6973 times)
Lokabrenna
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« Topic Start: March 21, 2011, 11:46:48 am »

Well, is it possible?

This may seem like a silly question, but I've been reading material from certain authors who shall remain nameless, and I've detected an undercurrent of...solemnity, almost gloominess, to the tune of: "Cultivating a relationship with a deity is hard work. They sometimes push you to explore sides of yourself that you would rather keep in the dark. Pain and suffering can be acceptable offerings for some gods."

It's not my place to bad mouth the way other people relate to their gods. If it makes them happy, go for it. I understand that, yes, cultivating a relationship with a deity can be hard work, but surely some gods enjoy parties as well? (My gods are known for being fond of drink...lots of drink.)

On a related note, has anyone ever had a deity come and tell them to "lighten up"?

I just realized this is the same sort of question I ask my kinky friends: "Is it always about exploring the deep recesses of the mind or can you just spank someone 'cause it's fun?"
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« Reply #1: March 21, 2011, 12:06:43 pm »


I enjoy my relationship with my god.  He's - a friend.  It's a friendship with a power difference - I'm not claiming we're on the same level.  But at heart, he's a friend.  He cares about me, and I about him.  It is at the bottom a friendship, with everything else built upon that.
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« Reply #2: March 21, 2011, 12:10:17 pm »

Well, is it possible?

This may seem like a silly question, but I've been reading material from certain authors who shall remain nameless, and I've detected an undercurrent of...solemnity, almost gloominess, to the tune of: "Cultivating a relationship with a deity is hard work. They sometimes push you to explore sides of yourself that you would rather keep in the dark. Pain and suffering can be acceptable offerings for some gods."

It's not my place to bad mouth the way other people relate to their gods. If it makes them happy, go for it. I understand that, yes, cultivating a relationship with a deity can be hard work, but surely some gods enjoy parties as well? (My gods are known for being fond of drink...lots of drink.)

On a related note, has anyone ever had a deity come and tell them to "lighten up"?

I just realized this is the same sort of question I ask my kinky friends: "Is it always about exploring the deep recesses of the mind or can you just spank someone 'cause it's fun?"

I find that working with the gods can be challenging, but it's almost always got a fun tint to it. Yeah, the gods can push you, they can smack you down when you deserve it, but I don't think it's all doom and gloom.

I've have gods tell me to lighten, not to take things so seriously. To not let life get me down, etc.

That's just me, though.

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« Reply #3: March 21, 2011, 12:11:10 pm »


I've never had a deity tell me to lighten up, but solemn reverence isn't really my thing anyway, so it's a non-issue for me.

I've seen a number of pagans as of late who are very much what you're describing. Doom and gloom and it's all hard work and it's about what the gods want, not what we want! At which point I do my best Tenth Doctor impression: "Well..."

The gods are, in most cases, a very large part of religion. What they want, what they need from us, is Important. But religion is created by people, and it's for those people too. And a life that is all solemnity and seriousness does not sound like much of a life to me. They have their place, but so does fun and laughter.
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« Reply #4: March 21, 2011, 12:22:26 pm »

Well, is it possible?

This may seem like a silly question, but I've been reading material from certain authors who shall remain nameless, and I've detected an undercurrent of...solemnity, almost gloominess, to the tune of: "Cultivating a relationship with a deity is hard work. They sometimes push you to explore sides of yourself that you would rather keep in the dark. Pain and suffering can be acceptable offerings for some gods."

It's not my place to bad mouth the way other people relate to their gods. If it makes them happy, go for it. I understand that, yes, cultivating a relationship with a deity can be hard work, but surely some gods enjoy parties as well? (My gods are known for being fond of drink...lots of drink.)

Absolutely, interactions with the Gods can be enjoyable.

I think the comments you're seeing come as a result of two long-standing threads - one that "You can just call on whatever Gods you feel like, no commitment, no risk", and the other that the Gods have nothing better to do than to make you, personally, as an individual happy - both of which have been showing up for quite a while in various sources.

The "Hey, this stuff does have consequences" is a pretty direct response to both threads.

Personally: I believe that a relationship with the Gods is still a relationship. Sometimes that's going to be fun and joy and pleasure. But sometimes, it's going to get a bit harder: times what I want and what the other being in the relationship wants are different. Times there's some difficulty in communication. Times when I'm trying to balance lots of things, and short some relationships in the process. And sometimes, in relationships, we get told stuff we don't really want to hear, but that is true or important or meaningful. I want my friends to tell me those things when they're important, so of course, I want to hear it from my Gods, too.

Likewise, I believe that my Gods want me to be happy - but that they don't want to run my life for me. (And in particular, I'm convinced that the Gods I work most closely with have some areas they have a lot of ways to affect, and some areas where they don't, so not everything is within their scope.) But I also feel that I am not the only thing they're interested in (Why should I be? It's a big world with lots of cool stuff in it. They're certainly not the only thing *I* care about.)

So, it makes sense that sometimes the interactions are about happiness and joy and pleasure - but sometimes about harder stuff, because you need to deal with the harder stuff, too. They can't whisk away the stuff that is making me unhappy - but they can nudge me towards the changes that will improve the situation, or make me better able to honor them, or to work on stuff that's of interest to both of us. But that isn't always 'fun' or 'light'.

I enjoy my relationships with the Gods I honor - but I enjoy them the way I enjoy time with the friends who dig deep and think through stuff, and ask me hard questions from time to time. And because I value the relationships, I do my best to spend time and be available even when that's not the thing I really want to do that day. Because that's what a committed relationship is about sometimes.
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« Reply #5: March 21, 2011, 12:48:18 pm »

I enjoy my relationship with my god.  He's - a friend.  It's a friendship with a power difference - I'm not claiming we're on the same level.  But at heart, he's a friend.  He cares about me, and I about him.  It is at the bottom a friendship, with everything else built upon that.

I have that kind of feelings with Freyja, i see her as a more powerfull being. But there is a form of friendship "or so it seems". I don't have any worries about being overly formal or too serious when i call on her, and she seems to treat me the same confronting me as a person, not as an all powerfull devine being.

Legion.
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« Reply #6: March 21, 2011, 01:10:07 pm »

Juni and Jenett covered most of what I have to say, so I'll just toss in a couple of remarks:

This may seem like a silly question, but I've been reading material from certain authors who shall remain nameless, and I've detected an undercurrent of...solemnity, almost gloominess, to the tune of: "Cultivating a relationship with a deity is hard work. They sometimes push you to explore sides of yourself that you would rather keep in the dark. Pain and suffering can be acceptable offerings for some gods."
I don't know if it's quite the same thing as what you've been encountering, but some folks seem to have a very deep need for religion to be !!Serious Business!!, to be kept carefully separate from "frivolous" things like pleasure and humor.  If that's what their spiritual needs are, then that's what they are, and it's none of my business (though I sometimes can't help but wonder how much of that is their own need, and how much is baggage about How To Do Religion that they've brought with them unexamined from the religion they were raised in - especially if that religion was one of the more dour and puritanical sorts of Protestant Christianity).  But those are not my spiritual needs, and I get rather grumpy when folks who take that stance try to make my spiritual needs their business, and tell me that I'm not taking my religion seriously enough - I am; it's just that I hold that serious doesn't mean solemn, it means important, and that play is also important.  (Which gets into what Juni said, so I'll stop there.)

Quote
I just realized this is the same sort of question I ask my kinky friends: "Is it always about exploring the deep recesses of the mind or can you just spank someone 'cause it's fun?"
To which I have the same sort of answer:  Sure, exploring the deep recesses of your own mind can be edifying and relevant, but the bottom line is, if spanking someone (or being spanked, or any of thousands of other things) isn't fun for you, whyinhell would you do it?  (Generic you, not you-Lokabrenna, of course.)  I can think of a whole pile of reasons for exploring why one desires some or another kinky activity (or vanilla, for that matter - "why do you like kissing?" is no less legitimate a question than, "why do you like spanking?") - not least of which is that one might think of some other activities one might also desire to include - but if "because I derive pleasure and/or satisfaction from it" isn't part of the answer, perhaps one is asking the wrong question.

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« Reply #7: March 21, 2011, 01:36:21 pm »


On a related note, has anyone ever had a deity come and tell them to "lighten up"?

I just realized this is the same sort of question I ask my kinky friends: "Is it always about exploring the deep recesses of the mind or can you just spank someone 'cause it's fun?"

I think sometimes people let fear get the best of them.  It's kind of like in a relationship, if you're having to walk on egg shells all of the time, what does that say about the relationship?  Fear should never be the basis of a relationship.  Yes there should be reverence and respect for the gods, but not a fear of doing or saying something wrong that makes you not enjoy said relationship. 

I'm not saying that your relationship with the gods is always going to be perfect and happy; you may hit some rough spots but all relationships do. 

I remember hearing a Catholic priest telling people that they needed to stop being so serious and enjoy their faith. 
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« Reply #8: March 23, 2011, 05:46:49 am »

Well, is it possible?

My patron deity is Loki, and in my experience it's definitely possible.
He doesn't care about formal rituals, or want serious, grovelling followers. He's very relaxed and informal when he visits me in my dreams. He can sit sprawled in a chair drinking beer from the bottle, or we sit outside on the ground and talk. He seems quite fond of sitting outside in sunshine on the grass.
He's like a best friend and older brother, to me. Sometimes he makes me laugh throughout the entire dream. Sometimes he's very serious and tells me things I need to hear. Once he sent me a dream that scared the crap out of me.
But it's definitely not a gloomy relationship with demands of pain and suffering as offerings. The few demands of offerings he's made has been for beer, a special Norwegian brown cheese and coffee. Other offerings he seemed to especially like has been honey and Kinder eggs (those hollow chocolate eggs with little toys inside).
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« Reply #9: March 23, 2011, 01:54:36 pm »

Well, is it possible?

This may seem like a silly question, but I've been reading material from certain authors who shall remain nameless, and I've detected an undercurrent of...solemnity, almost gloominess, to the tune of: "Cultivating a relationship with a deity is hard work. They sometimes push you to explore sides of yourself that you would rather keep in the dark. Pain and suffering can be acceptable offerings for some gods."

It's not my place to bad mouth the way other people relate to their gods. If it makes them happy, go for it. I understand that, yes, cultivating a relationship with a deity can be hard work, but surely some gods enjoy parties as well? (My gods are known for being fond of drink...lots of drink.)

On a related note, has anyone ever had a deity come and tell them to "lighten up"?

Aw, heck yes.

I am a follower of Hermes... a trickster! A joyful, friendly trickster at that.  Often there are times when I get "weird coincidence" day, in which there will be a string of songs that I either associate with him play in multiple places, and or relate to a conversation/train of thought... or symbols that pop up in the same manner... and all of it in such huge amounts that it seems not JUST coincidence.

He lightens up my life, helps me to see things in a much more amusing manner, not always on the pessimistic side like I used to do.  There's a laugh with his presence, not a frown.

Sequana is all about love so far, one of the two goddesses I worship.  So, with pure mother-love, I don't get any gloomy, strict, grumpy feel. 

Sirona's the strict one, but not in an oppressive way...
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« Reply #10: March 23, 2011, 04:29:04 pm »

I just realized this is the same sort of question I ask my kinky friends: "Is it always about exploring the deep recesses of the mind or can you just spank someone 'cause it's fun?"

Um, yes?  Grin

I didn't know how to answer the actual question, so I kind of stepped back from it. I don't really have a buddy-buddy relationship with a deity. I don't know that "fun" is the word I'd use for Belenos. But it is joyful. It's so joyful it makes me want to say "Wheeeee!" and hum a happy tune. I'd do that heel-clicking jump if I knew how. I think he wants me to have fun, does that count?
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« Reply #11: March 23, 2011, 05:05:02 pm »

Well, is it possible?

I would have to say yes.  I walk with Freya and Thor. I can't say that I've found either of them to be strict or forbidding.  My relationship with both of them could be defined as fairly easygoing.  I think they just want me to have fun and enjoy my life.  In fact, there have been times when Freya especially has pushed me to do something fun.  So...yes, it's possible.  Smiley
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« Reply #12: March 27, 2011, 04:29:52 pm »

On a related note, has anyone ever had a deity come and tell them to "lighten up"?

ROFLMAO...  Sorry...  Only, like, every time we "talk".  (I'm a little slow, OK?)

I follow Dionysos.  And I am SO not what you'd expect from someone making that statement.  I really think the main reason he's taken me in is to helpme remember what joy is. That's not all the relationship is about by any means, but it seems to be the major focus so far.
 
On top of that, my sweetie's patron is Hermes.  Reverent irreverence is kinda the way of things around here.  As long as we keep the "reverent" part in mind too, all is well.
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« Reply #13: March 31, 2011, 12:04:55 am »

Well, is it possible?


My relationship with Amaethon is very much a fun relationship. He's kind of like a an old friend that knows how to cheer me up or get serious when he needs to to light a fire under my but. He's not over bearing, he very cool to hang out with and just talk about how great he is, and that I'm cool to for honoring him.
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« Reply #14: March 31, 2011, 12:36:33 am »

Well, is it possible?

This may seem like a silly question, but I've been reading material from certain authors who shall remain nameless, and I've detected an undercurrent of...solemnity, almost gloominess, to the tune of: "Cultivating a relationship with a deity is hard work. They sometimes push you to explore sides of yourself that you would rather keep in the dark. Pain and suffering can be acceptable offerings for some gods."

It's not my place to bad mouth the way other people relate to their gods. If it makes them happy, go for it. I understand that, yes, cultivating a relationship with a deity can be hard work, but surely some gods enjoy parties as well? (My gods are known for being fond of drink...lots of drink.)

On a related note, has anyone ever had a deity come and tell them to "lighten up"?

I just realized this is the same sort of question I ask my kinky friends: "Is it always about exploring the deep recesses of the mind or can you just spank someone 'cause it's fun?"

My main God is Hermes, and he is always telling me to have fun and enjoy life.  Even though I do interact with him in more solemn matters, he is constantly telling me not to take things so seriously.
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