Tag Archives: religion

Mixed family altar

Not all pagan keep permanent altars in their homes, and sometimes its because not everyone follows the same path. You can, however, provide a mixed family altar where everyone can combine their beliefs in one place.

You will need;

Mutual respect. Even if someone is Christian, you should respect that path and if they wish to set up a cross or similar religious symbol. Sharing respect strengthens family bonds, and helps encourage one another in their spiritual path.

Candles. If you worry about fire, you can also use the flameless candles. Its for the mood, to symbolize enlightening and energy.

Offering plate (or bowl, basket or other container). Here is where family can put prayers, promises, offerings, and other items in a single space for the Divine. I would suggest including a small pad of paper with pencil so members can jot down words when the need arises.

Offerings can often take many forms such as food, drink, incense, prayers, promises, shiny things, and intentions. You could even put money, and then the family can vote on where to send and which charity.

Season and holiday symbols. For instance, a spring altar might include eggs, flowers, but also crosses, and symbols of Christ’s resurrection.  A winter solstice them can include symbols of the god, but also a nativity scene.

The family altars becomes a special place where members can individually or as a group, gather together for prayer and spiritual expression.

 

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A step off the path

Copy of IMG_0840Once you realize you’re pagan, you tend to feel connected to all things; this will flag now and then. Some may find a sense of being lost or disconnected with the God/dess.

Like any direction we take, taking a step off a pre-determined path, often leads us to find some unexpected wonders we wouldn’t explored otherwise.

Here are a few tips to help you along the way;

Take some time off of being pagan. Sometimes stepping away from your tradition/faith enables us to get to know ourselves in another light. Wicca and the pagan paths will wait for you. There are no punishments for stepping back now and then, and in the meantime you can try new things.

Explore other faiths. Sometimes another spiritual path offers insight in meaning for an aspect you didn’t understand before. Buddhism, for instance, help me put many beliefs into perspective. Even re-learning an old faith provides insight and clarity for you.

Explore the depths of your soul. Ask yourself ‘why’ in regards to feeling disjointed. Learn to meditate, take long walks, sit in stillness, or explore methods of divination to find out how you tick. Do you feel a general disconnect, perhaps you feel depressed, or maybe you feel a bit disillusioned with the path you’re on? Explore the causes of your feelings. This can help find a way back.

Learn to play. Sometimes, religion becomes too orthodox and we lose that sense of free-form spirituality. Incorporate more ‘fun’ in ritual and daily activities to express your religion. this could take the form of dance, crafts, games, silliness, and ‘out-of-the-box’ thinking.

I think its natural that you find yourself feeling a bit lost or disconnected. Its like the honeymoon phase of a relationship doesn’t last, but instead, offers you a new stage of Life to explore.

What are your tips for those feeling a bit off their spiritual path? Post in comments.

How to begin?

 I was thinking the other night on where to guide new pagans on their quest to learn more. I’m tempted to toot my my own horn and say “go to my blog’, but I feel compelled to suggest some books;


 Scott Cunningham’s Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner is an excellent starter book on Wicca specifically. I love his down-to-earth language and valid points. He keeps things simple and straight-forward.

 

Doreen Valiente  wrote a number of books on the topic of Wicca and the pagan religions, as well as authoring the long version of the Wiccan Rede. Her book, Witchcraft for Tomorrow I feel is a ‘must read’ to better understand the history and origins of Wicca.

 

Margot Adler is a well respected author of Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America that focuses on pagan religions, not just Wicca.

 

The Spiral Dance: A Rebirth of the Ancient Religion of the Goddess: 20th Anniversary Edition by Starhawk, I feel, is a bit outdated, but was one of the first books I read on the subject. I like her other books that delve deeper into the psychological processes of religion/spirituality for healing. This is why I put it on my ‘must-read’ lists.

There are other books, of course, but I feel these are the best for starting out on the subject.

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