How Does a God Choose You Then?
eeny, meeny, miney, moe
At some point when you become Pagan, or sometimes even before, the Gods begin to take notice of you. Gradually, those you have a greater affinity for pay closer attention and may start coming to you in your dreams or through other means.
Some Gods may decide to “test” you. This isn’t to prove your worthiness, far from it. That is a concept conceived in the idea that people are inherently unworthy and must prove themselves otherwise.
These tests are more to make sure that you are capable of handling the energies that particular God may bring into your life by combining His energies with yours.
In my own life, I found myself being tested a lot when Lilith decided she was going to be part of my life. To the point that I finally told her to back off and leave me alone for a while as it was getting way too much for me.
Once a God Tries to Contact You
What do you do next?
When you start getting these messages, however they may come, it is time to start your investigations.
If you have a clear idea on who it is, then find all the information you can on that particular God and study Him, or Her, in depth. Look in books, on the internet, record your dreams if He is coming to you in that way. Meditate. Ask questions and listen for His answers.
As a side note, if the images and impressions you are getting about a particular God don’t match what other people have written or are telling you, this doesn’t mean either of you is wrong. It just means you are both seeing a different aspect of that God. Think about it, do you act the same way with your boss as you do with your friends? Do you talk about the same things with your colleagues as you do with your parents? No, and neither do I.
If these messages are coming to you as symbols, then you have a bit more work to do. You’ll need to pull out your reference books and websites and find out what you can about the symbolism of what you are smelling, seeing, or otherwise sensing or experiencing. Seek guidance from outside sources such as books or by asking questions of other people. Listen to your gut instincts here as well. If you find yourself being drawn towards one particular Pantheon over another then look that direction. The ultimate answer of Who it is trying to contact you will come from within your own heart.
For instance, when I was smelling cinnamon everywhere I began by looking at where cinnamon had been used in ritual and what deities were associated with it. That led me to information about the early Babylonian and Sumerians and from there to Judaism, all of which led me to Lilith. Cinnamon was burnt in the Jewish temples and was associated with Lilith.
Other people have reported seeing a particular bird a lot, in situations where they wouldn’t normally expect to see that bird. Or hearing a particular sound, or having repeating dreams. Some may continually find themselves drawn to books which contain information about that Deity.
It is thought within a shamanic context that if you see a particular animal from 3 different perspectives within a journey that means the animal wants to speak to you and may be a power animal or have a gift for you. The same applies when looking at potential Patron Gods. If you are receiving messages from the God from several different sources, it’s time to take a closer look.
This brings up another point. Not everything is a symbol of something else. Sometimes a cigar, is just a cigar. It’s when you start seeing or hearing or experiencing things outside of their normal context that you need to sit up and take notice. Seeing pigeons where I live is not symbolic. They’re everywhere. Seeing a swan 3 times when there aren’t any currently living in the nearest water source? That’d be symbolic.
But I don’t want to be chosen!
It’s okay to say no.
At no time, ever, do you have to accept a Deity as your Patron. You always have the choice of saying no thank you. Of telling Them to go away and leave you alone.
I don’t want anyone to come away from this thinking that when a God notices them they have no choice but to accept that Deity.
I have lost track of the number of times I have told different Gods to bugger off (sometimes I haven’t been that polite) and leave me alone, or told them to just back off for a bit.
Sometimes, They can be persistent and may still be hanging around on the periphery. I have found that for the most part however, the Gods will respect your wishes. And if One didn’t, would you really want to have any sort of relationship with It?
Not everyone wants or needs a Patron God. Not everyone has to have one. And just to be clear, having a Patron God or two or 10 does not make someone a better Pagan.
I’m always willing to answer questions that people may have about Patron Gods. Feel free to leave me a message in the comments section, or send me a note via the Contact Me page.
Read the previous entry: My Patron Gods
Coming next week: Dedicating Yourself to a Patron God