Posted by: naiadis | February 17, 2014

Devotions — Morning

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Morning prayers are not the first thing that I do upon waking. The first thing that I do is feed the starving — er, annoying — er angelic cats. Then I put water on for tea, and run Corbie out to water the lawn. By the time he’s satisfied with the saturation of the soil the tea water is boiling, and so I set the morning cuppa to steep. I light my flame, I do some breath work. Once the tea is ready to be poured, I do so. Poseidon gets 8 teaspoons from my mug — because He prefers it without cream, and because otherwise it’s too hot for me to partake of it with him for the morning sharing. We share that first sip, and then the rest is left for Him. I have a morning prayer that I wrote, that I recite when I’m feeling formal or when I’m not feeling it at all, and otherwise, it’s a touching in to my heart, a touching in to that place that is us. It as an alignment of my spirit, of my day, of my existence, with Him. That is how I start every day. Bits fall to the wayside from time to time, but that touching in with Him does not, and has not in years.

For those who are curious, my “formal” morning prayer is:

Hail Poseidon, Keeper of my heart.
Hail my Lord, my Husband, my God.
I ask for your blessing this day, and all days
Let my feet tread your path
Let my hands be Yours in this world,
Let my heart carry You forward
Let my tongue speak Your praise
Walk with me, my God
May I treat all with compassion and awareness, as You guide me.

Yeah, I squirm, still, over the compassion, from time to time. But, it has been His decree almost from the very beginning, so I can’t discount it. I will embrace it. Even when I’d rather not.

~*~*~*~
Confession time: my previous post? That’s me, waffling back and forth between deciding to disengage entirely from the ‘pagan/polytheism’ debate that keeps circling around, and deciding to respond/contemplate/consider/keep aware of. I do waffle between the two, because the conversations often lead to interesting contemplations of my own, and I do gain from it. I’m one of those in an uncomfortable position, because there are those whose treatment of those they don’t agree with/don’t understand I cannot abide, and yet, I have more in common with them, in my approach to my gods and my devotional life, than I have with some other sorts of pagans. I’ve striped my life of anything that does not support my relationship with my gods, and I cannot imagine living any other way. I don’t want to. I simply don’t think that this way is for everyone, that this way is the only valid way of being pagan, and that one word has to mean one thing to all people. That is, at the end of the day, I believe the gods can take care of themselves, that it’s our specific traditions and not our gods that are threatened by people not understanding/listening/supporting them, and since I’m not involved in anything more complex than a household tradition, I don’t care about my tradition continuing beyond us. The gods do not need me to keep them in the world. Can they use me to help them be in the world now? Yup, and they do. Once I’m gone? No, I’m not a useful tool for that task.

And that may be the difference, in my wiring, between myself and other polytheists who are more vocal in these conversations. Once I’m gone, I want the world to forget about me. I don’t care much about leaving a legacy.

Also: I love stories. I love hearing about how people interact with the gods or the divine or however they are able to view that, I love hearing about the varied ways that these beings can touch our lives, even within what I view a limited scope that those who do not believe in them allow — because the spirits are clever and resourceful. I don’t believe our gods are archetypes, but I believe they are capable of using them, and I believe they alone know the bestest possible way to reach the people they want to reach, and if it looks like a long, meandering route to my view, so what?

I don’t believe there’s a resolution that’s possible. It’s a thousands of years old argument, and I stay out of it mostly because the hostility turns me off, and makes it difficult to sympathize with those I have more in common with. But, I do enjoy the introspection the discussion provides.

So, conflicted. And will likely remain so. After I posted, I realized that the above was actually the post I really wanted to write. Don’t we argue that we’re about orthopraxy, not so much orthodoxy?

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Responses

  1. I love this. Absolutely, from beginning to end. Little rituals are so important, and you inspired me to try again and write a morning prayer myself. Thing is, I do it spontaneously, and sometimes the results are ridiculously bad, but mostly they are not. Sometimes, they are really good, too. But whenever I sit down to write a prayer down and, you know, set it in stone so to speak, it ends up feeling wrong.

    Maybe it’s because of Who my Deity is. (He’s already enduring a lot of formality from me — I like it, somehow. Maybe that’s His way of telling me “don’t you dare”) :)

    In any case: regarding the bottom bit, there’s much that I can relate to. Theologically, and also in some ways practice-wise, I have much in common with… well, them. But on the other hand: I don’t make that a war, my holy war ™. I’m a carer and a home-maker, much more than anything else… or at least that’s what I’m aspiring to do/be.

    • I’m glad you found this useful! I wasn’t originally going to include the prayer I wrote, because 1) it’s personal and 2) who the heck cares what my prayers look like? But for all that it’s personal, it’s not *private” and why tell when I can show?

      Depending on the time of the year, I’m drawn to formality, and I find myself craving a liturgy of sorts. So, when it started last year, I started one. Because spontaneous is great — even when it’s horrid — but I still like having something to fall back on. Which does not mean I don’t have those days when I stand at the shrine, and say, “Glorious Poseidon, Holder of the Earth, hold me to You as you hold th–aw, screw it, You know what I’m trying to say!”

      Maybe you can negotiate getting a bare-bones frame-work set in stone, as it were? Maybe a “when those mornings are just too much *morning*”? Maybe that might be acceptable? Borderline formality. Formality-just-in-case?

      • I like the idea :D Borderline formality or formal-just-in-case is something that sounds like it might be acceptable, and it’s times like now that I can actually argue the point… being that I am currently *almost* finished with my PhD thesis, and my nerves and mind are all over the place, so that I find it incredibly difficult to even calm down enough for more than 5 minutes. :)

  2. I love this. It’s rather like how I feel about my deities, without the marriage aspect. Living with the gods and spirits day to day doesn’t get mentioned too often.

    • It’s been a fun little series to write. It’s the living with the gods and spirits day to day that I’m really interested in hearing about, with others, too.

  3. Your morning prayer is really lovely; thank you for sharing!

    • Thank you!


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