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Author Topic: Belonging to a Deity  (Read 13491 times)
moonmarquette
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« Topic Start: July 25, 2007, 12:31:02 am »

There have been a few (ok more than a few) times I've read on the board about people "belonging to" a Deity or a group of them. I have a few questions about this, if I may:
Note: I'm putting "belong to" in quotation marks because I'm not sure if I'm using the correct term.

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

Thank you so much for taking the time. I'm enjoying learning here Smiley
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« Reply #1: July 25, 2007, 12:49:31 am »

There have been a few (ok more than a few) times I've read on the board about people "belonging to" a Deity or a group of them. I have a few questions about this, if I may:
Note: I'm putting "belong to" in quotation marks because I'm not sure if I'm using the correct term.


Being new here, I might not understand the context of the term "belong." Is it being used in the way in which I use the term "patronized by?" If so, then I think I can answer truthfully.

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

My patronage has changed twice over time. Initially it was Isis who spoke to me, who called me towards paganism. I responded to her, and began a sometimes tumultuous, but always rewarding journey with her.

Then tragedy really struck my life. My baby son died in my arms (to be revived by his father -- he lives today) and my whole world nearly ended within a brief period of time. The circumstances are far too personal for me to talk about in relation to what happened afterwards, but I needed a boost in strength, and it was a boost that Isis couldn't give me, particularly given that she is the Goddess of family (essentially) and I was suffering some serious losses in that area, which would eventually lead to the disillusion of my first marriage.

When my ex-husband began to beat me, threaten to kill me, and broke into my house on several occasions, and then when he continued to harass me after I returned to the United States, something changed dramatically. Whenever I went into a meditation to pray to my patron, it wasn't Isis that I saw, but either Bast or Sekmet (both of whom I still see with a great deal of regularity -- I guess I'm a cat woman?).

I began to take a journey with both of them, Bast protecting me from what hurt, and Sekmet giving me the resources to fight against what was trying to bring me down. Bast is, for the record, the Goddess of the home, and Sekmet... Well, I don't quite know how to define her. Sekmet the Destroyer seems surprisingly accurate at this point in time.

To some extent I think that we can choose those Gods and Goddesses who's patronage we desire, simply by communicating with them as much as possible. But in my opinion and experience, it's much easier to allow them to call us, or in the case of some (such as Sekmet) to "claim" us. I think I'll always be hers now.

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

I again assume that "belong" is what I think of as "patronage."

I believe that it really depends on the deities themselves. Each deity is going to require something different. My patron, for example, likes subjugation. She is the type of Goddess who wants to see humans kneel at her feet and pay her homage and worship. Myths and Legends of Egypt tell of when she tried to destroy the world and bring everything down. Certainly she belongs to Chaos.

My Goddess wants service and she wants worship, pure and simple. But it isn't entirely a one-way street. In return, I get her protection, and she delivers it with a fierceness I've never experienced with any other God or Goddess outside of Ra and his equivalents in other pantheons.

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?


I don't *think* so. I've never considered this, and I'm sure that you'll get a variety of answers to this question. My answer is very vague and difficult to explain, but effectively, I don't see the Elements as being Sentient. Elementals, perhaps, though as I understand them... Again, hard to explain without being potentially offensive to any Elementals sitting over my shoulder, as they often seem to do!

To put it as politely as I can, they are a different kind of being and exist on a completely separate plane from humans and Gods. In my experience, one can *befriend* an Elemental, and be guarded by one, but one cannot be patronized by one.
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« Reply #2: July 25, 2007, 12:59:48 am »

There have been a few (ok more than a few) times I've read on the board about people "belonging to" a Deity or a group of them. I have a few questions about this, if I may:
Note: I'm putting "belong to" in quotation marks because I'm not sure if I'm using the correct term.

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

Thank you so much for taking the time. I'm enjoying learning here Smiley

"Belonging to" is not quite the term I would use (I'm more partial to "follow" or "serve") but as none of those quite put the relationship into quite the terms needed I'm going to use them interchangeably.

1) Before I belonged to m'Lady the Morrigan, I followed m'Lady Arianrhod.  I still do, in fact, but she's taken a back seat in my life.  That's fine with both of us, as we have more of a mother-son relationship and I'm an adult.  Still, that one just kind of happened.  I found her name in a passing reference, I was mildly drawn to it, I researched her, we talked, and some sort of bond formed.  Which is a complete contrast to my other patron.  Not <i>that</i> long ago, my Lady the Morrigan smacked me rather hard and told me I was Hers and I might as well get used to it.  I think she may have been trying to get my attention in more subtle ways beforehand and I didn't notice.  I don't know.  In both cases there was a certain element of "I just knew," but as you can see the approaches were fairly different.  As for how I just knew?  I just knew the same way I can sense if someone is working magic around me, or if someone is feeling down.  I can't explain beyond that.

2) Depends on the Deity and the exact nature of your relationship with that deity.  In my case, it entails regular communication.  That occasionally takes the form of guidance and encouragement from My Ladies, and it occasionally takes the form of reverence from me, but not always.

3) I would say the answer to this is yes and no.  The Elements do not tend to express themselves as cohesive sentient beings, and so do not "claim" people.  More often, you'll see people who are more associated with (or possibly "attuned to") some elements than others.  In fact, I have yet to meet anyone who is attuned completely equally to all four of the elements I percieve.  However, individual element-spirits or a deity associated directly with an element might claim you.
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« Reply #3: July 25, 2007, 04:43:20 am »

There have been a few (ok more than a few) times I've read on the board about people "belonging to" a Deity or a group of them. I have a few questions about this, if I may:
Note: I'm putting "belong to" in quotation marks because I'm not sure if I'm using the correct term.

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

Thank you so much for taking the time. I'm enjoying learning here Smiley

ok...I know I'm not the most experienced person but I do feel like I can give you MY best answer for  numbers 1 and 2

1)  I follow mainly the Kemetic tradition, as Egypt has always fascinated me it was a natural choice.  I think the first time I realized I was truly chosen by Isis to follow her...I was talking to my best friend and I called Isis "Mommy".  As my relationship with my super-evangelical-christian mother has always been very strained (if not practically non-existent), it was really a relief feel that connection to anyone.  And now I truly feel that I have found my family in the Kemetic pantheon.  I know that at least three goddesses and one god have called me to thier following.  Number one will always and forever by my spiritual mother...Isis, who watches over me always.  Number two I have always thought of a mischevious (yet protective) older brother, Anubis.  And most recently Sekhmet and Bast, who I kind of associate with wise and caring aunts.  And as I have distinct memories of a past life in Egypt, every time I commune with them I feel as if I have come home.

2) I must agree with Jorgath, each person's relationship with a deity is different.  For me (for the most part) Isis, Anubis, Sekhmet, and Bast; they all wish me to think of them and love them as if they were my family.  For Isis I wear a pendant in her image and commune with her often.  For Anubis (Anpu as I call him) I have a tattoo of an Ankh on my chest, to symbolize a promise I made to him.  As for Sekhmet and Bast, I treat all felines with the utmost care and respect...other than that, I have not yet figured out what it is that they wish of me.  But for all of them, I am trying to grow in my faith...I have much to learn and I have no one in particular to turn to for guidance anymore, so I'm kind of at a road block trying to find a way around it.

I hope that was of some help to you, although I feel like I've been babbling a bit too much...lol.
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« Reply #4: July 25, 2007, 05:16:08 am »

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

When She swooped out of the sky and said "Hi. You're MINE. Don't forget it." Smiley

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

Work. Lots of work.

And very amusing conversations.

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

My UPG on this is sure--why not? Other than that I don't know.
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« Reply #5: July 25, 2007, 06:43:29 am »


1)  I follow mainly the Kemetic tradition, as Egypt has always fascinated me it was a natural choice.  I think the first time I realized I was truly chosen by Isis to follow her...I was talking to my best friend and I called Isis "Mommy". 


I'm curious if you mean Isis--goddess of 10,000 Names, all mother, moon goddess of the Egypto-Greek-Romans or Aset--goddess of kings, magic and more solar than lunar. 

I ask because many that have communed with both say they have different personalities--some interpret this as two seperate deities and some as two sides of the same coin. 

FYI, Aset's personality is (shared personal gnosis) more demanding, straightforward, and possessive while Isis is THE Mother Goddess, compassionate and merciful. 

So, I'm curious as to which one you have a relationship with here. 



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« Reply #6: July 25, 2007, 07:59:51 am »

I believe that it really depends on the deities themselves. Each deity is going to require something different. My patron, for example, likes subjugation. She is the type of Goddess who wants to see humans kneel at her feet and pay her homage and worship. Myths and Legends of Egypt tell of when she tried to destroy the world and bring everything down. Certainly she belongs to Chaos.

MAJOR twitch here.

Sekhmet does not belong to Chaos.  She is a guardian of Ma'at and brings back the proper order by whatever means necessary.  That means destroying what blocks Ma'at, but that is NOT Chaos.  It is destruction of that which stands before proper order.
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« Reply #7: July 25, 2007, 08:06:53 am »

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

Some others here haven't used the terms you have, and initially I was going to do the same, until I realized that I do belong to several deities. There are several more that I work with closely but don't exactly belong to, per se, and several more that get a nod of honor and appreciation and little more. There are a lot of levels that one can interact with deities.

1) For the three I belong to, it was an intense gut feeling, mostly. There was confirmation later in the way of "Hm? Oh, yeah, you're Mine, kid," but at first it was all instinct.

2) Depends on the deity. With Lugh, it doesn't really entail much at all; mindfulness of Him, that's about it. Brighid and an Mhorrígan, that's another story. Mostly work. Smiley

3) As I don't personify the elements (or even work with the classical elements), I'd say no, but that doesn't make it true. Wink I couldn't belong to an element, but you might be able to without a problem.
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« Reply #8: July 25, 2007, 08:08:31 am »

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

Well, Apollo has always been in my life.  It just took me a long time to realize who He was.  So it's sort of like asking how I knew I belonged to my parents. Cheesy

What does belonging to Apollo entail?  Lots of work, and lots of affection.  It's like having a mentor that wants you to do your best at something, and wants to lead you to the answers without just giving them to you.  And it's also a chance to serve and actually do something meaningful.

As far as belonging to an element .. I've no idea.  I've never *met* Water, or Earth, or anything like that.  But certainly you can be tilted towards one.
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« Reply #9: July 25, 2007, 10:02:59 am »

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

It took me a long time to figure out who I "belonged" to. (Apollo, by the way.) For a long time I skirted around any sort of commitment, trying to find a different diety to work with. But none of the others ever was right, even if I adored them. Then one day I finally gave up, and let him take over. It just came to the point where I was too tired to fight anymore, so I gave to his will. I've been so much happier since then.

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

I agree that "belong" doesn't sound right, I don't feel like I belong to him. (I'm not a sheep!) It feels more like a partnership; I do a lot of little things, give him small treats now and then, and ask for his assistance a lot more than I do other dieties. But he's worshipped in the same way, even though I hero worship him I'm not building him a golden pedestal.


3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

This is an odd question, because I'm a water sign. And anyway you try it, by all means I should be more drawn to water. But I have always been drawn to earth aspects, colors, etc. So I guess it's possible a certain element could call to you more, but I don't think I really "belong" to earth.
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« Reply #10: July 25, 2007, 11:19:08 am »

There have been a few (ok more than a few) times I've read on the board about people "belonging to" a Deity or a group of them. I have a few questions about this, if I may:
Note: I'm putting "belong to" in quotation marks because I'm not sure if I'm using the correct term.

Like others, I'm not sure I'd use that phrasing myself.  I'm not property.  Wink  I think what you're essentially getting at, though, is the whole "Patron deity" concept, so I'll try to answer from that perspective.

Quote
1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

Got thwacked.  I was driving home from work one day and the realization just kind of up and hit me in the gut--and I use that phrasing because that's very much what it felt like, sort of the mental equivalent of a blow to the midsection.  It was a pretty decisive indication that I needed to pay attention to Apollo.

Quote
2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

Different things for different people, I think.  In my case, it doesn't entail a whole awfully lot right at the moment...  According a little extra attention and honor to Him here and there, that kind of thing.  I've seldom been asked to do more than that, although occasionally I'll feel compelled to say or do something about a situation and gotten the feeling that He was behind that compulsion.  The other end...  A lot of work on me and myself, but as Shadow mentioned it's not "poof, you're better" work.  It's work; I get guidance from Apollo which has been immensely helpful, but He can't (won't?  either way) change me for me.

All of which sounds like a lot of "give" and not much "take" on my side, but the whole relationship doesn't feel that unbalanced to me.  I'm not sure how to adequately explain this.

Quote
3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

Whether you're talking about Patronage or not here, I kind of don't think so.  I've never felt like the Elements were really personified enough for anything or anyone to really "belong to" them.  I do think that one can have a strong affinity for an Element (it's water for me, although the longer I follow Apollo the more I feel a pull toward fire too), but I think that's substantially different from belonging to it.
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« Reply #11: July 25, 2007, 11:21:06 am »

This is an odd question, because I'm a water sign. And anyway you try it, by all means I should be more drawn to water.

Meh.  I'm an air sign and I've never "gotten" Air at all.  Although I'll also say I've never quite gotten why the water-bearer is an air sign either.  Wink  But then I'm an extreme novice at the whole astrology thing.  I know what my sign is and what element it's attached to and that's about it.
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« Reply #12: July 25, 2007, 11:39:25 am »

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

I don't think 'belong' is quite the correct term for me as it connotes a level of ownership that feels like nails on a chalkboard.  With Epona it's been a long, slow awakening to the awareness that a relationship had been offered.  Looking back on things, She first entered my awareness over 10 years ago.  She's been very patient, gentle and understanding in allowing me to come to terms with the reality that a deity is interested in me for me.  I've offered some insight actually over here:

Searching for Epona http://www.ecauldron.net/forum/index.php?topic=1216.0

Quote from: moonmarquette
2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

You may be interested in reading this thread: Dedicating to a God(dess) http://www.ecauldron.net/forum/index.php?topic=677.0.

So far we're still working out the details.  It's been a lot of reading and extracting what little is currently know about Her.  My 'Secret Librarian' has been immensly helpful in that arena Wink.  Other than that, Epona hasn't asked for anything other than a daily devotional.  I'm quite happy to provide that as She has been there every time I have asked for assistance or reassurance.  In that, Epona has been far more reliable than most humans I've known.  I'm looking into what a devotional entails but I've run into a bit of a roadblock as the resource I was looking for is no longer available from the library.  So far I've lit a candle and tried to focus on building rapport with Her.

Quote from: moonmarquette
3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

In all honesty I really couldn't say.  I perceive the classical elements as being rather achetypal.  In my experience, and this is complete UPG, they have an intelligence that doesn't work even on the same plane as we are.  They're concerns are elsewhere.  Beyond that, sure you can be drawn to a particular element and resonate with it.  Ever hear of the term 'water baby'?  Some folks are really 'down to earth' while others are off on 'flights of fancy'.  Then there's the ones that 'burn with passion'.  From what I've experienced and heard of the elements demand respect but are more of working partners than patrons.
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« Reply #13: July 25, 2007, 02:45:35 pm »

Like others, I'm not sure I'd use that phrasing myself.  I'm not property.  Wink  I think what you're essentially getting at, though, is the whole "Patron deity" concept, so I'll try to answer from that perspective.

That teaches me not to post so late at night. Patronage is definitely a better word and one I should've used. At the time of the posting I just finished reading a thread about someone "belonging to" Morrigan so that was my jumping off point.

This entire thread has been enlightening.. I'm excited to read more of course. I plan to read the articles tonight when I can hunker down and concentrate on them.
Being raised Catholic I understood patronage of a saint because I, myself, was drawn to one (still am) and from reading all of this.. I can tell there is no big difference in the way it happened, the reverence, and the acceptance. I just felt a little left out and a bit lonely that I hadn't "heard" anyone calling to me. It just felt like I was sending out the signals but no one was returning my calls. Smiley
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« Reply #14: July 25, 2007, 02:49:57 pm »

There have been a few (ok more than a few) times I've read on the board about people "belonging to" a Deity or a group of them. I have a few questions about this, if I may:
Note: I'm putting "belong to" in quotation marks because I'm not sure if I'm using the correct term.

1) How did you know that you "belonged" to this or these Deity?

2) What does "belonging to" a Deity entail?

3) Is it possible to "belong to" an Element?

Thank you so much for taking the time. I'm enjoying learning here Smiley

I am one who uses the term "belongs to" when referring to my relationship with Yinepu. It is 100% accurate in description!

1. I know I belong to Him because I was told! Yinepu has been in my life since I was a small child, although I didn't know who He was then. When I found out His identity, it became obvious. Aset came to me and told me "Here, you are His. He claimed you before you were born." Yinepu then took His rightful place in my life and never left my side. He has frequently informed me that I belong to Him.

2. Belonging sounds like I am a possession, but that's not true. I am free to do what I want - which makes me more inclined to include Yinepu in every aspect of my life. It is most definitely NOT a patron/devotee relationship, and He is not Dad (that deity is Set). Yinepu has always been my Beloved. He holds me accountable for my own actions, and I don't shirk from that. I feel a high sense of duty to balance and ma'at due to my relationship with Yinepu, almost as if my actions concerning ma'at reflects Yinepu's influence. I am not set many duties, nor does my Beloved expect too much from me - other than the usual offerings, particularly of sweets and chocolate.  Tongue I do have to maintain a lighthearted approach to living, never losing my inner child.

Basically, belonging to Yinepu involves my whole self, body and soul. No aspect of my life is beyond his attention - f'ex, I am not allowed to date anyone who does not approach the divine and ma'at with less than respect. Education is important, as is time alone without human interaction to get to know myself better. I have to take care of myself as well. These are not decrees, simply things that make Him happy.

3. I have no clue.
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