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Author Topic: Forgotten Gods  (Read 6577 times)
Journey
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« Topic Start: October 14, 2007, 11:10:40 am »

A frequent question I have noticed Cauldron members ask is in regards to what deity may be making an appearance to them. The most common reply is to simply ask that deity who they are. Perhaps that is the best anwser.

Often times when seeking to determine the identity of a deity we turn to books, other's opinions, web searches, etc.  There is nothing wrong with that, and your deity in question may turn up there.

However, something I don't see addressed too often is the fact that there are hundreds of forgotten gods out there. There are Gods from civilizations long lost to us and Gods assimilated into other cultures and Gods trounced out by invasive religions.

A lost God or even a very obcure God wouldn't/couldn't immediately come to the minds of other Pagans or turn up in a basic reference search.

If you have the feeling that your deity may be from a lost culture or is a very ancient form of a deity, it then follows that you will have to ask a lot of questions of that deity (and I am sure the deity would be aware of the situation)

My question then is, besides meditation and having to over-burden such a deity with questions, what other methods can be used to gain insight into the situation?  Has anyone personally experienced this situation?
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« Reply #1: October 14, 2007, 11:30:59 am »

My question then is, besides meditation and having to over-burden such a deity with questions, what other methods can be used to gain insight into the situation?  Has anyone personally experienced this situation?

I know one or two "lost gods"...I actually have a very close relationship with one of them, a Fire God who seems to have gotten lost somewhere from the Roman Pantheon. I wasn't actually intending to figure out who he was exactly, it just was something I became aware of over a long period of time. Somewhere along the line came the realization of "Oh crap; you're a god?" Grin

But it wasn't something I actively sought out to know, and if I were actively seeking this information I'm not sure how I would go about it.
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« Reply #2: October 14, 2007, 02:01:11 pm »

My question then is, besides meditation and having to over-burden such a deity with questions, what other methods can be used to gain insight into the situation?  Has anyone personally experienced this situation?

:waves arms around like pinwheels:

From 1999 to 2001, I went through this with - wait for it - Magog. It's extremely difficult to find anything about her outside of the Bible, and I wasn't searching for the misconstrued Christianized Magog. Well, I wasn't searching, she found me, but...But yeah. She's extremely patient and open to endless questioning. Thank goodness.
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« Reply #3: October 14, 2007, 07:07:42 pm »


My question then is, besides meditation and having to over-burden such a deity with questions, what other methods can be used to gain insight into the situation?

Been there. Still there.

Single most useful thing? Having someone who was experienced and comfortable doing invocatory/possessary work with a range of deities who was willing to 'ride' on my connection to M'Lady. It did a tremendous amount to improve my own sense of communication with Her and confirm that I was really on the right track with what I was getting.

However, this is not exactly an easy and handy thing most of us have lying around (and in fact, I went outside of my normal group work to do it: someone trained in a different tradition did the invocatory work for me

Beyond, that, though, I figure if a deity wants my attention, they can deal with me having questions and needing time to sort things. I don't think that means I get to waste that time (any more than I would a friend's) by asking the same stuff over and over, or being contradictory for no good reason. But I do think it's fair game for me to use various methods (ritual, meditation, astral work, divination, etc.) and expect them to give me something to work with.
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« Reply #4: October 14, 2007, 09:54:20 pm »

Been there. Still there.

And am in line to buy the t-shirt.

I know fairly well who Shad isn't. He's not Freyr, Adonis, or Cernunnos. He isn't Thor, Loki, or really anyone else I've looked into in the Nordic pantheon (and truely, he doesn't seem to fit well there anyway). I'm fairly certain He's not a god from outside of the European area, though that's based more on how He looks in my mind than anything I've been specifically told.

I'm ready to chalk it all up to poor record keeping and just ask Him for a different name to use. Undecided

To answer the original question, I can't think of anything more to do than just keep asking Shad in my case. There really doesn't seem to be a trace of Him in the history we have, so I can't run to a library and grab a book on Him. ("The Idiot's Guide to Lost Deities", anyone?) I think, in cases like this, the god or goddess expects questions. Shad doesn't mind the questions I ask Him, but that doesn't mean He answers them all either. It's possible that people who have been called by "lost gods" will simply have to write their own records of Them - I wonder sometimes if that's not part of the point. *shrug*
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« Reply #5: October 14, 2007, 10:15:51 pm »

It's possible that people who have been called by "lost gods" will simply have to write their own records of Them - I wonder sometimes if that's not part of the point. *shrug*

I actually find this rather comforting. There have been three times in the past year, that obscure middle-eastern type deities (two gods and a goddess) came to see me. They were sort of drive-bys, they gave me specific instructions, and that was pretty much it, I haven't seen them much since, although I know they are around. I am currently getting an invite from some kind of Mayan god or goddess (not sure yet-have not going into the temple, still too skeered). I was at first upset that I could not get other people to tell me who these deities were, and that my own research gave me so little. But I do think that part of my path right now, is doing things on my own and not getting other people to do the work for me, which is my usual MO. I am sure that is true of lots of others. An obscure or forgotten divine being would be the perfect teacher to cure this behavior, in many ways, it seems.
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« Reply #6: October 14, 2007, 10:57:38 pm »

But I do think that part of my path right now, is doing things on my own and not getting other people to do the work for me, which is my usual MO. I am sure that is true of lots of others. An obscure or forgotten divine being would be the perfect teacher to cure this behavior, in many ways, it seems.

Good point there! I hadn't thought of that. If a forgotten God appears, you should look to yourself for some answers as well. Ask yourself why this deity might have choosen you.

An obscure God might just pick out a tenacious researcher (large flashing neon sign above my head) who would be willing to pick up on and follow subtle clues.
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« Reply #7: October 14, 2007, 11:27:11 pm »

An obscure God might just pick out a tenacious researcher (large flashing neon sign above my head) who would be willing to pick up on and follow subtle clues.

Theoretically, yes.

As far as I can tell, not so much in my case.

I do a repeat of the research routine every 6-9 months because it makes *me* feel better

(My research? That includes a day trip to the U, the use of whatever specialised databases I can get my hands on, and the use of a bunch of other focused resources - like plant guides, and a lot of research into scent, because of the two identifying factors I have. Though I don't actually know if the flowers and the scent match, come to that. I have gotten to the point of "Not a plant hardy in Minnesota, and I think one that doesn't turn into perfume easily", but this does tend to produce a research dead-end unless you can travel.)

Anyway, whenever I do that, I get the amused grin in the back of my head, and the "If it makes you feel better, dear" pat on the shoulder, and not a whole lot more progress.

After about the second or third time around of that, I got the hint, and mostly focus on the non-intellectual side of the understanding. The experience. The emotional connection. The intuition.

She values my research skills and tech skills, and a bunch of other stuff, mind you. Just I'm pretty sure it's pointless in terms of direct identification. (I'm now fairly sure she's a British Isles, and likely English, water deity. But there's tons of those we know almost nothing about, and none of the names I've turned up in that research felt quite right.)

I do know a trip to England again is in my future sometime down the road, but I suspect that'd be my next major breakthrough.
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« Reply #8: October 15, 2007, 02:04:33 am »

It's possible that people who have been called by "lost gods" will simply have to write their own records of Them - I wonder sometimes if that's not part of the point. *shrug*

I think that some day, it will come to that. I'll gladly welcome it too. It will involve chaos, upheaval, a new wave of fluffy bunnyism ("this is what Zeus/Apollo/Odin/Aset told me! this is the One True Way!") and pain to those with common sense going, "I can't believe they let that person write a book on this...". We're a long ways off, though. I've noticed lately that the fluffy bunnyism is dying out, and that recons and recon-oriented views are becoming more accepted and viewed as factual, not as stuck up elitists. I think the path of when modern worshippers will begin to write again, whether they are ones that we know of, of modern gods, or ones that were lost in the pages of time, will follow the same path. Its already evident, especially with those who write (modern hymn books, websites). It hasn't really hit "mainstream" yet.. but it will.

And hoo-eey, the mess it'll make. ... I'm still trying to remain optimistic. Grin
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« Reply #9: October 15, 2007, 05:10:25 am »

It's possible that people who have been called by "lost gods" will simply have to write their own records of Them - I wonder sometimes if that's not part of the point.

It's also possible you might be dealing with a god that hasn't been recognised before (Ie, a NEW one - I can just hear the gasps of disbelief now). But think about it - even the 'old' gods had to have been created or made their presence known at some point. It's just possible you might be dealing with someone who wasn't around waaaay back when, and has come about (been born? Depends on your view of pantheons really) because of a modern need. Hey, the ancients would find new gods to suit new or evolving discoveries, it's certainly not beyond the realms of possibility that there may be a 'new' set out there, just starting to make themselves known.

<tongue in cheek> In fact, I'm suprised that no-one has 'discovered' the patron Diety of computers... I'd like to make a sacrifice to stop my computer crashing... *evil grin* </tongue in cheek>  Grin
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« Reply #10: October 15, 2007, 07:26:24 am »

It's also possible you might be dealing with a god that hasn't been recognised before (Ie, a NEW one - I can just hear the gasps of disbelief now). But think about it - even the 'old' gods had to have been created or made their presence known at some point. It's just possible you might be dealing with someone who wasn't around waaaay back when, and has come about (been born? Depends on your view of pantheons really) because of a modern need. Hey, the ancients would find new gods to suit new or evolving discoveries, it's certainly not beyond the realms of possibility that there may be a 'new' set out there, just starting to make themselves known.
<tongue in cheek> In fact, I'm suprised that no-one has 'discovered' the patron Diety of computers... I'd like to make a sacrifice to stop my computer crashing... *evil grin* </tongue in cheek>  Grin

I am in 100% agreement with you here! In fact I have been thinking on much the same lines these days, especially regarding a deity of technology!  Gremlins surfaced during WWII, wheather or not one belives in them is not really the point, but there was a need for them hence they surfaced.

To my way of thinking a God is the essence of a force, thing, or idea. So technology fits the bill. I have tried fitting past Gods into this "vacancy" or "God wanted" position but they just don't seem ideal, and really a God must be the essence or spirit of the thing. That said, there would already exist a God of technology we just don't know what to call him/her and are not sure of the worship. I should think with a little effort we could find this elusive one to help battle the gremlins.

Personally, speaking I have been searching for a deity to help with household appliances as well, they give me a dickens of a problem. The old home and hearth Goddess seem unable to connect to these areas of the modern home.

Yes, I am being serious here, although I suppose some may see this as being a bit off the wall, but hey, flaky is my middle name!

Hum....maybe I should start a new thread to see if anyone else might be serious about connecting with a high tech god? I really think the computer types might get a better connection to him (pun intended)
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« Reply #11: October 15, 2007, 07:53:43 am »

However, something I don't see addressed too often is the fact that there are hundreds of forgotten gods out there. There are Gods from civilizations long lost to us and Gods assimilated into other cultures and Gods trounced out by invasive religions.

A lost God or even a very obcure God wouldn't/couldn't immediately come to the minds of other Pagans or turn up in a basic reference search.

This makes me think of Senua, whose votive offerings were discovered a few years ago in a field in Hertfordshire by someone with a metal detector.  It made me wonder if she'd had any modern followers who did not know her name, who perhaps assumed she was Minerva (the statuettes were Minerva-like) or more of a Boann-like figure as someone's got a theory that a river may have been named after her.  Or maybe she was just one of those goddesses who some people end up sensing and don't name at all.   
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« Reply #12: October 15, 2007, 09:11:54 am »

It's also possible you might be dealing with a god that hasn't been recognised before (Ie, a NEW one - I can just hear the gasps of disbelief now). But think about it - even the 'old' gods had to have been created or made their presence known at some point. It's just possible you might be dealing with someone who wasn't around waaaay back when, and has come about (been born? Depends on your view of pantheons really) because of a modern need. Hey, the ancients would find new gods to suit new or evolving discoveries, it's certainly not beyond the realms of possibility that there may be a 'new' set out there, just starting to make themselves known.

The more I talk with Shad, the more I think this is the case with Him. Simply because I keep getting a feeling of "demi-god" and a sort of reluctance to fully claim a place among "ye olde gods". Which would easily explain why I can't *find* Him anywhere. I just wish He'd say so if that's the case, then I could stop searching...

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<tongue in cheek> In fact, I'm suprised that no-one has 'discovered' the patron Diety of computers... I'd like to make a sacrifice to stop my computer crashing... *evil grin* </tongue in cheek>  Grin

The computers themselves are the gods, doncha know? Wink
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« Reply #13: October 15, 2007, 01:53:52 pm »


The computers themselves are the gods, doncha know? Wink
LOL - love it!
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« Reply #14: October 15, 2007, 02:23:42 pm »

The more I talk with Shad, the more I think this is the case with Him. Simply because I keep getting a feeling of "demi-god" and a sort of reluctance to fully claim a place among "ye olde gods". Which would easily explain why I can't *find* Him anywhere. I just wish He'd say so if that's the case, then I could stop searching...

That's a very real possibility. From my experience with a couple of "new gods" they are reluctant to claim any sort of place with the "old gods". IME (and this is totally UPG btw) there is a sort of "hierarchy of respect" amongst the gods...this is not because of authority (even though the older gods do tend to have more authority) it's truly because the newer gods honor those who have gone before.

I also don't believe that new gods come about because there is a need, but that they come about and then may fill a need that exists somewhere. They "find their niche" so to speak.
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