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Author Topic: Asking Permission  (Read 5156 times)
darashand
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« Topic Start: April 26, 2011, 02:02:16 pm »

This topic was partially sparked from Constructing a Ritual Based on Two Paths, but it is something that has been on my mind for awhile.  I've noticed that a lot of people feel they have to ask permission from their main Deity before working with another Deity.  I haven't really felt this and thusly have never asked permission before, so I'm wondering why others do?  Why is it necessary to get permission from one Deity before working with another?
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« Reply #1: April 26, 2011, 03:22:12 pm »

This topic was partially sparked from Constructing a Ritual Based on Two Paths, but it is something that has been on my mind for awhile.  I've noticed that a lot of people feel they have to ask permission from their main Deity before working with another Deity.  I haven't really felt this and thusly have never asked permission before, so I'm wondering why others do?  Why is it necessary to get permission from one Deity before working with another?

It really depends on the relationship with the deity.

You can think of it a bit like romantic relationships: some partners are fine with you having friends of varying genders, spending time with them alone, doing stuff just with them that you don't do with your partner (even if it's stuff the partner doesn't actually care for.)

But some partners don't like that - they really want, say, to go see new movies together, or they aren't sure they're comfortable with their partner doing private, one-on-one socialising with someone of a different gender. Or sometimes, they're fine with most things and most people, but not with a specific person (who they don't trust, they work with, etc.)

Deities can be the same way: some are fine with just about anything, as long as the commitments to them are kept. Some are fine with some things (going to a ritual that honors another deity, for example, but not being the priest/ess honoring/invoking/drawing thm down) And some are a good bit more specific, and would strongly prefer people don't go to rituals with other deities without some really specific advance discussion.

None of these is automatically wrong (or automatically right) - but some can be the wrong fit for a particular person/Deity combination.

I think - much as with romantic relationships, actually - that the initial context can help set some of this up. I developed my relationships with M'Lady and Himself while working in a tradition (as I still do) where working with, honoring, and invoking/Drawing Down other deities was part of the fabric of the tradition, and those things are fine with them. (As is going to rituals which honor other deities: I was actually at an Easter Vigil to support/celebrate a dear friend who was joining the Catholic church this week, and got much more amusement from M'Lady than anything else at how they did the baptism.)

But if I'd started in a path which worked only with a specific deity, or pantheon, moving outside of that might take more specific negotiation and adjustment.
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« Reply #2: April 26, 2011, 03:36:27 pm »

This topic was partially sparked from Constructing a Ritual Based on Two Paths, but it is something that has been on my mind for awhile.  I've noticed that a lot of people feel they have to ask permission from their main Deity before working with another Deity.  I haven't really felt this and thusly have never asked permission before, so I'm wondering why others do?  Why is it necessary to get permission from one Deity before working with another?

I'm only one person, but I'll take a stab at it.  IMO, it depends (don't we love that word here?) on the relationship with your Deity(ies).

My Deities have made it clear that They have a claim on me and I have a deep, but different, relationship with both.  Due to the depth and strength of the bond, I would probably ask before getting into a committed relationship with yet another Deity...but I don't ask before working with others on day-to-day non-commitment-related things.

From my own experience, some Deities are jealous (possessive?) of their followers and some are not.  If you follow/worship/love a Deity, it is wise to take their needs into account before jumping into the deep end.  Wink

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« Reply #3: April 26, 2011, 03:37:35 pm »

...

And of course, posting at the same time, I didn't see Jenett already answered much more fully than I could. Smiley
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« Reply #4: April 26, 2011, 09:12:30 pm »

This topic was partially sparked from Constructing a Ritual Based on Two Paths, but it is something that has been on my mind for awhile.  I've noticed that a lot of people feel they have to ask permission from their main Deity before working with another Deity.  I haven't really felt this and thusly have never asked permission before, so I'm wondering why others do?  Why is it necessary to get permission from one Deity before working with another?

I think in most cases, unless you consider yourself the "servant" of a particular god, it isn't usually necessary to ask permission to work with another. Some people do have very intimate relationships with their deities, so they might feel the need to ask, out of respect. But I personally don't think that most deities are "jealous" in that way. Others may disagree, but I think many pagans (myself included) tend to have a lot of unnecessary anxiety about that. Even when we ask, most of the time we are told that it's not an issue.

However! If I'm going to be interacting with more than one deity in the same place at the same time, I like to be sure they get along. Sometimes, even deities/spirits from the same pantheon might not get along - or even deities from different pantheons who share a particular function. My former High Priestess told me about a ritual she held for Samhain where two people invoked a death deity, each from a different culture. Once they locked eyes, they rushed at each other! The others had to hold them back to keep them from fighting. That's an extreme example, but it's far from the only one. So unless it's an obvious match, I like to ask, just in case. But don't sweat it too much - these things always make for a humorous story later.

I will say that sometimes, I just like to know what my deities think about me trying something (or someone) new in my practice, but I'm more seeking their wisdom than asking for their permission.
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« Reply #5: April 26, 2011, 11:49:13 pm »

However! If I'm going to be interacting with more than one deity in the same place at the same time, I like to be sure they get along. Sometimes, even deities/spirits from the same pantheon might not get along - or even deities from different pantheons who share a particular function. My former High Priestess told me about a ritual she held for Samhain where two people invoked a death deity, each from a different culture. Once they locked eyes, they rushed at each other! The others had to hold them back to keep them from fighting.

Wow! How on earth did that come about?
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« Reply #6: April 27, 2011, 12:06:14 am »

This topic was partially sparked from Constructing a Ritual Based on Two Paths, but it is something that has been on my mind for awhile.  I've noticed that a lot of people feel they have to ask permission from their main Deity before working with another Deity.  I haven't really felt this and thusly have never asked permission before, so I'm wondering why others do?  Why is it necessary to get permission from one Deity before working with another?


I personally don't ask permission for this, but as others said, it depends on the individual relationship with the deity/ies. I usually suggest a permission-request to those who are interested in or feeling a connection to another deity, but aren't sure if that's okay. It's not that I think that asking for that permission is generally all that necessary (I think it's not often needed) but that I think asking your deity if it's alright can bring relief from worrying about that. If you're worried about how your god/dess might react, ask. (Not you, specific. You, general.) If not, then I don't think there's usually a need to ask for permission.

Some gods, however, might be more finicky about a particular protocol, certain traditions, etc, that might mean yes, you do have to ask. I don't have that kind of a relationship with any gods of that nature, so it's outside my experience.
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« Reply #7: April 27, 2011, 10:58:26 pm »

This topic was partially sparked from Constructing a Ritual Based on Two Paths, but it is something that has been on my mind for awhile.  I've noticed that a lot of people feel they have to ask permission from their main Deity before working with another Deity.  I haven't really felt this and thusly have never asked permission before, so I'm wondering why others do?  Why is it necessary to get permission from one Deity before working with another?


Hmmm, interesting... this is something I've never considered.  I feel "close" to two Hellenic gods who, I've gotten the impression, are equally fond of me.  Never thought of Them having a problem with me worshiping other deities, though.  Just seems that would be giving too much importance to myself when compared to other devotees.  Also, you'd think the gods would know what's in our hearts - know our devotion.

That said, I mean no disrespect to those who believe they've had such experiences.  Just my .02.  
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« Reply #8: April 27, 2011, 11:25:30 pm »

This topic was partially sparked from Constructing a Ritual Based on Two Paths, but it is something that has been on my mind for awhile.  I've noticed that a lot of people feel they have to ask permission from their main Deity before working with another Deity.  I haven't really felt this and thusly have never asked permission before, so I'm wondering why others do?  Why is it necessary to get permission from one Deity before working with another?

For me, it's not really necessary, but then, that depends on the situation.  Mine is that I've promised myself primarily to Manannan, but I also work with Lugh and Aenghus, and I'm beginning to research Ogma.  Now, none of these deities gives two hoots whom I go to in the Irish pantheon, in fact, Manannan actually nudged me towards learning as much about the pantheon as a whole as possible, and honouring where appropriate.  Outside the pantheon, I've looked a couple of times, and got a very definite "sorry, kid, you're not ours" from the deities in question.  Therefore, it doesn't really matter whether Manannan, or Lugh, or Aenghus, or Ogma, would be OK with me worshipping outside the pantheon, because there aren't likely to be any deities outside it who would work with me.
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« Reply #9: April 28, 2011, 02:42:31 am »

Wow! How on earth did that come about?

According to what I remember her telling me, they planned to have a woman invoke the Morrigan, and a man invoke Death itself. I guess they wanted to try something experimental. Then, once the deities(?) were present, they just went at each other, and the others had to get between them. I'm not clear on how they managed to calm them down, lol.

It's interesting to try and ponder why they fought. Maybe the Morrigan is more about fighting for your life, rather than death itself?
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Thessaly: It's time to draw down the moon.
Foxglove: We did this. Or something like this. We had water and salt, not blood. We invoked the goddess in her aspect as the moon. We called down her power...
Thessaly: Did she answer you?
Foxglove: Well, it felt good at the time. Empowering.
Thessaly: Hmph.
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« Reply #10: April 28, 2011, 11:52:22 am »

According to what I remember her telling me, they planned to have a woman invoke the Morrigan, and a man invoke Death itself. I guess they wanted to try something experimental. Then, once the deities(?) were present, they just went at each other, and the others had to get between them. I'm not clear on how they managed to calm them down, lol.

It's interesting to try and ponder why they fought. Maybe the Morrigan is more about fighting for your life, rather than death itself?

A deity that is Death itself?  Ummm....wouldn't that be a specific deity? I'm just curious, I've never heard of death itself deified. Other then in fiction and really awsome fantasy art.  Not saying it's not somewhere, just very curious.

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« Reply #11: April 28, 2011, 08:28:58 pm »

A deity that is Death itself?  Ummm....wouldn't that be a specific deity? I'm just curious, I've never heard of death itself deified. Other then in fiction and really awsome fantasy art.  Not saying it's not somewhere, just very curious.

Not to my knowledge, either.* IIRC, she meant the basic, abstract concept of "death," and not any sort of deity. She may have been referring to the Grim Reaper - that's very possible. Not anything I would try myself, but as I said, they liked to experiment in those days.

*(There is Santa Muerte, but she's usually called a "folk saint," rather than a goddess.)
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Thessaly: It's time to draw down the moon.
Foxglove: We did this. Or something like this. We had water and salt, not blood. We invoked the goddess in her aspect as the moon. We called down her power...
Thessaly: Did she answer you?
Foxglove: Well, it felt good at the time. Empowering.
Thessaly: Hmph.
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« Reply #12: April 29, 2011, 12:30:33 am »

According to what I remember her telling me, they planned to have a woman invoke the Morrigan, and a man invoke Death itself. I guess they wanted to try something experimental. Then, once the deities(?) were present, they just went at each other, and the others had to get between them. I'm not clear on how they managed to calm them down, lol.

It's interesting to try and ponder why they fought. Maybe the Morrigan is more about fighting for your life, rather than death itself?

I wouldn't classify Morrigan as a "death" deity. She's a deity of sovereignty. Death has quite a bit to do with that, but so does life and birth.

Not that I can speak for any deity, even One I have such an intimate relationship with, but I would think that Her anger in such a situation would be a) classifying Her so simply, and/or b) a territorial challenge of the other deity.

If They did have similar functions as gods, She might not like being called in with Him. If They didn't have similar functions, She might be upset at being associated with Him. If He didn't respect Her authority, Her sovereignty, then She'd definitely have a problem with Him.


Again, I can't speak for Her, but these are the feelings I get about this incident. These feelings could be my own assumptions from my relationship with Her, or they could be coming from Her directly. I'm not sure which.
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