It’s within the realm of possibility that I’ve talked about this before, but it’s something that needs repeating from time to time, if only to reassure myself that this works for me and I’m okay with it.
Sometimes there are no words.
When people talk about their relationship with their gods and spirits, the messages and omens they get, the communication, etc., the language is necessarily peppered with words like “I saw X,” and “He said this thing here,” and “I heard that phrase there,” and so on. If we were to rank the most common of the senses in order of their strength, I’ve no doubt that visual and auditory input rank high for the majority of people.
When it comes to how my brain works, how I learn, how my impressions of things are filtered, and especially with regard to my interactions with the gods and spirits, I don’t hear things — generally. I don’t see things — generally. Instead, what I experience is an almost ephemeral sort of feeling, of impressions.
It’s hard to explain. It’s exactly the same way in which I write and read. I was speaking to Beth about that just last week — when I read, I don’t hear the words in my mind. I don’t think in words (it’s said that most people don’t think it words anyway), and she does hear the words when reading, which is part of why I read so much faster than she does. It gets harder to explain because, since I’ve been reading and writing for so long, and since they’ve had such a prominent place in my life, and since I haven’t really spent a lot of time trying to dissect why it works the way it does, I have very rapid, very fluent translation from impulse/impression/sensing to English words. In my spiritual practice, it’s the same. I can sit and have an exchange with Poseidon that is all impulse/impressions and I can translate the experience into something that will allow me to communicate with others about it.
The difference in how spirits can and do communicate is important to note. In my experience, for example, some are more verbal than others. Odin, for example, has no problem using words with me (which I mostly don’t hear but rather are suddenly are of, like having conversations directly uploaded into my head, rather than having them be spoken) and when I was getting used to having Him in my life, my ways of communicating with Poseidon because a lot more difficult.
Because by and large, Poseidon does not use words with me. Not only that, but the way in which He communicates changes based on conditions that I cannot name or predict. Most of the time, it’s a matter of paying attention to impressions and impulses, and emotions both strong and subtle that may not be mine. Other times, it’s a matter of memories conjured up fresh, often by scent. Not infrequently, it’s a matter of my stretching myself and reaching for Him, and a sense of absence that makes me work to pull the connection between us up into my awareness on my own. In two decades spent worshipping Poseidon, I’ve actually heard aural words *twice*. Interior locutions are more frequent than that but they do not dominate.
My relationship with Odin, and other more verbal beings, has strengthened my interior verbal muscles, so to speak, and both rune work and my experiences with Reiki has helped me strengthen my ‘visual’ muscles, so these are things I *can* do . . . but they are added languages that I’ve worked hard to acquire, they are not my native tongue by a long shot, and more than Anyone else, Poseidon speaks to me in my native tongue. I wonder, time to time, if my native tongue isn’t inherently closer to His native tongue than either of our native tongues are close to words and sight.
Moral of the story: I know I’m not alone in this, and since I know I’m not alone in this, I know other people are not alone in this. It can be frustrating to see so much short hand when people speak of talking to their spirits or hearing their spirits — and some people mean just that, but I suspect “speak” and “hear” are often stand-in words meant to simply convey “communication”.