Calling Upon the Gods

bighid chant

I’ve talked before about the ways in which I interact with Deity, including this post a while back on why I don’t invoke. And I explored the ways in which I talk to Deity more full in a previous post for Pagan Experience, Conversations Over the Garden Fence.

But this week’s Pagan Experience is asking us to share your favourite invocation or devotional to the Deity of your choice. 

While I don’t invoke, I do have formal and casual ways of talking to the Gods, depending upon the situation and Who I am speaking to. For instance, Herne tends to be somewhat informal with me. Oh, I am fully aware of His power and his status as Lord of the Hunt and He can be quite intimidating when He wants to be. But there is an easy-going informality with Him. Talking to Herne is like sitting down with a friend at the pub over a pint of beer. Well, beer for him, soda water for me. And when I call Him a right bastard and tell Him to leave me the f*ck alone, He just laughs and disappears for a while.

Brighid, on the other hand is quite formal even in the most casual of situations with me. There is a regal-ness to Her which influences every interaction. I wouldn’t dream of telling this Lady to f*ck off. Not because of a fear of something happening, but because you just don’t speak to Her that way.

I do have a simple phrase I use when I am honouring Brighid at my altar, and after Herne bitched a bit about feeling left out I started using a similar phrase to honour Him.

Brighid gets a small shot glass of water (tap if nothing else is available, otherwise fresh water from a natural spring or well.

Her devotional chant is:

Hail Brighid
Solar Queen
Golden Lady
Mistress of Fire and Water
I honour You.

Herne gets a small shot glass of whisky.

His devotional chant is:

Hail Herne,
Horned God
Leader of the Wild Hunt
I honour you.

Most of my conversations though happen when I am doing mundane tasks throughout the day. Herne or Brighid may pop into my ear with a comment or question when I am driving (I discourage this when I need to concentrate), or when I am doing housework, or healing work. Or even when I am sitting at my computer writing a blog post. “Don’t forget to mention ______.” I will suddenly have come into my head.

Oh yes, this whole speaking in my head. How do I know these thoughts, because that is what they tend to be, thoughts, are coming from Deity and are not just a figment of my imagination?

Sometimes because the thought is so far out in left field away from something I would normally think about. Sometimes it is because I have asked a question, and through a process of writing or letting a question linger in the back of my mind, a response comes to me. Most often though it is because I just know. The thought speech coming from Herne feels different from the thought speech coming from Brighid, and both feel different from thoughts which originate from my own mind.

Finally, I look to the words of wisdom from the great wizard, Professor Albus Dumbledore, “Just because something is all in your head, does not mean it is not also real.”

The Pagan Experience 2015

I really don’t like Pagan Standard Time

Don't live on Pagan Standard Time

Don’t live on Pagan Standard Time

There! I’ve said it. I don’t like the whole excuse-ridden idea of “Pagan Standard Time”. We’re all familiar with it. You’re going to a Pagan ritual and the host says to arrive between 7 – 7:15pm for a 7:30 start and you should all be heading home by 10pm.

Only when you arrive at 7, you find you’re the first person there. The host is still running around in bedroom slippers trying to get kids fed and dogs watered and other mundane rituals of daily living sorted, ritual space is no where near being ready to be created, and the whole place just feels chaotic. Finally around 7:30 the next person arrives, and over the next hour the rest trickle in.

“Oh, sorry. We’re running on Pagan Standard Time. Teehee.”

Just when you think things aren’t going to ever actually start, they begin the ritual around 8:45. You’re now trying to surreptitiously check your watch in your pocket because you’ve only hired the babysitter until 10:30 and now it is looking like things won’t even finish before 11! Instead of being to relax and enjoy the moment, you’re stressing out over every last second. When you try to bring it up, you’re told “Oh, we run on PST, Pagan STandard Time, here. Everybody knows we never start exactly on time. Just try to relax and enjoy yourself, we’re starting now and that is what’s important.”

Yes, I understand that there needs to be some flexibility and fluidity, but there is a world of difference between being a few minutes late because you got stuck in traffic, and being an hour late because you know from previous experience that the host never gets started until an hour or so after they say they will anyway. The host, of course, is never ready by 7:30 because they know that people aren’t going to really start arriving until an hour later anyway, and thus a great obnoxious self-perpetuating cycle is created

It is this lack of respect for other people, their time and their life outside of ritual circle, which causes me to dislike the whole idea of Pagan Standard Time so much.

If you say you want people to arrive between 7 – 7:15, then make sure you are ready to greet them by 7:00. If you say you are starting at 7:30pm, then start within a few minutes of 7:30pm. I am by no means the sort of person who is going to stand at the head of the table tapping a clock going “Ahem! It is now 7:29, take your places please.” But if you say you’re going to start things going at 7:30 you should try to get things going before a quarter to 8 at the very latest I would hope.

Pagan Standard Time is nothing more than a piss poor excuse for rudeness, and it is disrespectful to both the host and other attendees of a ritual.

The Pagan Experience 2015