When I was young, my Aunty gave a photo to her Aunty back in Portugal one who practised old folk magic cursing him after she left him. He didn’t sleep for 8 and a half months because he was convinced he kept seeing the same old woman sweep the inside of his house every night not long after the sun went down fitting the exact description of my Aunty’s aunty.
He broke the curse by not feeding the fear and eventually his life changed and that was the end of that.
My mother would place an upside turned horse shoe on the front and back windows to bring luck and prosperity.
Shoes was another thing. The way a person left their shoes beside our door told us what was to come for them and how they were feeling inside. It was never wrong.
Brooms were also important. They way they stood, if they fell, where in the house a guest may have picked up the broom and placed it elsewhere told us what was to come.
Gypsy folk magic. These small things shaped a big part of who I am now which I was taught by the age of 6. Turkish coffee, jewellery and card readings all came later.
Natural medicines and how to bring in good and bad luck also came later. Things were never lost and handed down generation after generation things I’ve taught my daughter.
Though these things may appear to be small, they link back to our ancestors and how they once lived. It brings knowing, intuition and of course the magic of other worlds into our lives. It gives us stories, hope and insights but most of all it shapes how we choose to see the world and what we choose to see in the world.
Pagan Goddesses and Gods, there can be a place for them in our practice. Though not needed I can see why it helps women come back to themselves. I don’t look to any particular deity in my practice though I did once upon a time, but the deeper I went and started individuating my own path, the deities I once looked to naturally fell away. I am now standing in the flow of the Mystery nothing else is needed.
How I saw deity worship was like giving personality to the mystery to strengthen what is needed, whether conscious or not, within ourselves. I certainly saw that for myself even at the time I was looking to Goddesses for support. I do see how deities are very real for people because again how I see it, over time people have given such belief and love to personifying the mystery which I do see and feel how that belief can be very real when something has been given worship, focus and devotion for thousands of years.
No I’m not dismissing anyone who chooses to have deities in their practice actually the opposite. I believe pagan Gods and Goddesses are an important focus to connect to when we’re searching for a connection in an earth based practice. When we’re called to the Mystery it’s all too overwhelming, to not believe in anything that gives it a sense of realism and focus with a set of loose beliefs offering the freedom and knowing we’ve been searching for to come back to the earth, to the old ways, and the knowing we feel inside.
I remember when I didn’t feel the call to any particular Goddess I remember questioning my practice as a witch. Before that I experienced an overwhelming draw to study on every Goddess I intuitively felt was reaching in wanting me to know more, and of course I followed. I couldn’t tell you how many there were because there was so many but I believe the experience was like an initiation because not long after that I didn’t feel the need to look to any Goddess. I experienced a content emptiness which contained the calming and chaotic nature I knew to be every Goddess I studied and experienced. I went beneath the beliefs and found my own and most of everything I believed pretty much washed away from that moment.
There’s a freedom in not feeling I needed to look to anything but myself and what flowed inside and outside of me. I knew that already of course but it also gave me a more independent sense of self and really finding what love truly meant. A deeper knowing of the freedom love gives. It’s a challenging one to put in words unless experienced and every so called spiritual belief just fell away. Fucking fantastic yes but getting to the point of the post is how pagan deities can point us to the direction of this knowing if we choose to go deeper. I have a love for pagan deities and will share more of each Goddess on my pages that I have studied. I didn’t feel the need to explore pagan Gods to the extent of Goddesses though I did but it was the Goddesses which was the centre point of my practice and I can understand with my appreciation for my own gender, working with and empowering women.
I learnt a lot through my study of paganism and encourage anyone that is drawn to, to go there.
Leaving you with the Goddess Hekate one of the Goddesses I fell in love with through my practice and I love the stories and mythologies of Hekate, Queen of the Witches.