Friday, January 11, 2002

The Great Awakening

The signs had always been there, I suppose. After all, I’d always been interested in the metaphysical and all things magical, and my love for and interest in the Earth and all life that calls her home. But even I was shocked to realize last July that I was a pagan – or, to use a very misunderstood word, a witch.

I sometimes refer to it as my Great Awakening, because, in a lot of ways, that’s what it was. I woke up, and added it all up, and suddenly it all made sense to me. Was I born to this? I don’t know. It feels like it. It’s like I’m remembering something, rather than learning it. But I do know that somewhere along the way, probably at a very young age, I was told that certain things didn’t exist, or, if they did, they were evil, and so was I, if I still wanted to learn about them.

In July, I realized that it was people who had told me these things – not a direct message from God, and not my most trusted advisor, my own heart.

Anyone who has ever studied history knows that people distort things in accordance to the customs of the time.

Anyone who has ever studied human nature knows that people fear what they don’t understand, and people hate what they fear.

The number of wars that have been fought over religion is staggering. All religion is is the human soul seeking to connect with the Creator. Religion is a human construct, and, being man-made, is fallible. Human nature needs to feel superior, so each religion is the only “right” one, when, in fact, the underlying quest of most religions is the same – to connect with the Creator. It is in dealing with each other than creates the problems.

So, do I believe in God? Absolutely. I refer to Him as God, rather than Her as Goddess, but that is because I always have. I believe that the Creator has both male and female aspects, as is the case with most of Creation as we know it.

Do I believe in Jesus Christ? I believe he probably existed. Was he the Son of God? I don’t know. I don’t rule out the possibility - the Creator can do what the Creator sees fit. But the concept never really struck a chord for me.

Do I worship the Earth? No, not “worship” as such. But I believe the Earth is both the creation of and the manifestation of the Divine. Therefore, we ought to respect it as such. I believe it is a living, breathing entity.

Do I believe in the Bible? As a historical document which demonstrates the customs and beliefs of the time when it was written? Yes. As a powerful piece of literature. Yes. As the direct word of God? No, for the simple reason that it was recorded by fallible humans with conscious and subconscious agendas.

Do I believe in magic? Absolutely. I know that it is pooh-poohed by the vast majority of people, but I see it this way. If humans are vain enough to dispute things that can be seen, heard and touched, why wouldn’t they be arrogant enough to deny the existence of something they can’t experience with their limited five senses?

As Hamlet put it, “There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are accounted for in your philosophy.”

I believe in possibilities, and I believe in personal responsibility. I don’t believe the three-fold karmic law is a threat to help keep us in line. I think it is a reminder that each one of us has the ability to create or destroy, to help or harm, and that because we can’t predict what chain of events we may put into action, we should think long and hard before we do something. We are all connected in some way or another, and we have no real way of knowing if our ripples will become tidal waves. Better to work towards the greater good, just in case.

So long as it’s used for good, I do not believe magic is evil. I do not believe divination is evil in and of itself, but how it is used can make it so. I think this blanket labelling stems from misunderstanding, ego and fear.

And should I be wrong about all of this, I believe that God, having created me, knows that I’m merely an imperfect human being with her heart in the right place.

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