XV. Mundane practices that I associate with Poseidon
In Drew Campbell’s book Old Stones, New Temples*, the author suggested activities that might help one connect to the gods. With Poseidon, there is not anything that springs to mind that is obvious in the way that “go to the theater” is obvious when wanting to connect with Dionysos in a mundane way, though Campbell does suggest things like going horse back riding or visiting the ocean.
Honestly, the separation of “mystical/spiritual/religious” and “mundane” is a false dichotomy that I don’t encourage. Here is where my daily life is inspired by various monastic types who seek to bring their god into all their mundane tasks and interests. Am I perfect about doing this? Of course not; at what point have I ever said I’m successful in these things I strive to do? Nonetheless, I do the best I can to bring Poseidon into all the things I do. Maybe it’s a tad easy for me, given the interests that I have that could be seen as mundane, though, as you’ll see, it’s more about my mindset and less about the activities being “Oh, obviously Poseidon.”
Knitting is a favored pass-time, and depending on the project, knitting can be extremely meditative – hence, a great time to connect with Poseidon outside of ritual and just experience either being with Him or holding Him in my mind.
Writing, specifically writing fiction, has been my ‘natural’ way of keeping myself open to the worlds around me. There is a definite corrolation between those times when I have a harder time connecting with Him or Odin or the various other spirits I’m involved with and the times I’m not working, in some way, on a story project. I’m not one of those writers who interacts with any particular being or power as a muse; in how I explain how stories come to me, I say that the characters bring them to me. And that’s been somewhat annoying in my trying to figure out how to involve Poseidon in this act. Writing is one of my prime devotional activities – and it counts as a devotional activity for me even when I’m not writing about Poseidon, because it honors this connection with the otherworlds in a way that goes beyond words. But, because I’m pedantic, this bothered me for a long, long while. How can I call it devotional act if it’s not directly about Poseidon?
As I was getting ready for last year’s NaNoWriMo, Poseidon dropped a story idea on me, complete with title. The story was about Him, and I love it (and no, it’s not ready for public consumption yet, though you can read an excerpt here) and someday it will be released. The important thing He taught me during NaNo though was: to bring Him more directly into my writing activities, my writing did not need to be about Him. I had to include Him in the process. Not so that other people could see, but in my own process. He has become the main audience member in my story idea bouncing process. He listens while I talk plot issues out. He’s my sounding board.
These are the two most regular activities that I do that could be considered mundane**, and Poseidon is totally there, but you’ll notice that these are not “things I do that are mundane to fit into a specific Poseidon-theme”; rather, these are activities that matter to me that I bring to Poseidon, that I invite Poseidon to be a part of. This goes back to my giving Him my life. While there are some things that I have cut out of my life as part of being His (primarily, mindless activities. That is, whenever I do something I strive for it to be mindful, even if I’m mindfully doing something escapist) I find that it’s equally important to bring Him into the things that matter to me that maybe don’t seem like ‘Poseidon’ activities. To my way of thinking, part of bringing our gods into our world is bringing Them to the things that matter to us, even the ‘mundane’ things.
*way expensive book that’s out of print. There are other, better books that you can find on Hellenic paganism/polytheism/reconstructionism.
** I’m pretty boring, I suppose. I enjoy knitting and writing and studying and snuggling with my critters. Don’t judge.