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Piety isn't a one-shot deal. I'm back on the horse, for now. - Chronarchy — LiveJournal

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June 10th, 2005


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10:17 am - Piety isn't a one-shot deal. I'm back on the horse, for now.
It has been a long time.

Today, my home shrine blazed with the fires of devotion, the first time since . . . I don't remember.

So much has happened, and I let the truly important things fall by the wayside. My devotion and worship is almost forgotten to me now. It hasn't really been that long, but I can only half-remember the way to do my worship properly.

Do I fill the Well or light the Fire first?

Which deity statue do I honour first?

Do I call out to the Gatekeeper?


Stop.

Follow your heart.

I close my eyes. I breathe in. I center and open.

The box of matches in in my hand. I strike one against it, watching it flare up.

Light the sacred fires. One, two, three. The match still burns.

The Gods also desire honour.

Sequinna.

Brigando.

Cernunnos.

Epona.

The Matres.

Taranis.


I step back. The altar is ablaze with light. It is not only a rekindled set of candles; the light of my faith has found new kindling. My faith burns brightly on that altar.

I pray to each deity represented. I pray to those who are not seen.

"Come into my heart-shrine."

And they do.

I can feel their presence, warming, nurturing.

"We never left," they say to me. "We were always here. There is no shame, there is nothing to forgive. Let us hold you."

And I do.

I bask in their love and their warmth.

I remember the old bargains, forged so long ago between men and gods.

I stand, a pillar between the worlds.

One night does not make me devout. One ritual is not piety.

The road ahead is full of strength, faith, and love. I need merely to follow it.

[A gold star to Erien, whose off-hand request that I do 65 situps got me in front of my altar last night. Yes, my vision of piety is a bit skewed.]
Current Mood: rejuvenatedrejuvenated
Current Music: "Piece of Work", -JB

(18 comments Leave a comment)

Comments:


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From:duriyah
Date:June 10th, 2005 03:38 pm (UTC)
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Beautiful. Beautiful shrine.

"We never left," they say to me. "We were always here. There is no shame, there is nothing to forgive. Let us hold you."

That's what they always say to me, too.
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 10th, 2005 06:15 pm (UTC)
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Amazing how they're always exactly right.
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From:heimskringla
Date:June 10th, 2005 04:17 pm (UTC)
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I need to work on that whole piety thing myself. Been too long.
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 10th, 2005 06:16 pm (UTC)
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The best part of it is the realization that it really hurt, and now it feels so much better.
From:dansrobe
Date:June 10th, 2005 04:50 pm (UTC)
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Nice shrine, nice post
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 10th, 2005 06:16 pm (UTC)
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Thanks, and thanks.
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From:niveus_tigris
Date:June 10th, 2005 06:30 pm (UTC)

Speaking of altars...

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Both capriciouslass and I were recently contemplating that since things have gone so well in the finding, buying and settling into our new Haven and selling the Chaos Cube, we should be unpacking and re-building our altars. This is the least we can do to say, "Thank you for helping things to go well." Has not happened as of yet, but there have been many 'this absolutely needs to be done now' things getting in the way. (sigh)
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 10th, 2005 06:50 pm (UTC)

Re: Speaking of altars...

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When I moved into my house, the deity statues were the first things through the door, and they were given a temporary home in my room, not far from where the altar is now. It took a lot of willpower to move them first, though. There was so much other stuff to do!

Believe me, I understand fully :)
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From:chiska
Date:June 10th, 2005 09:53 pm (UTC)
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Very nice. Thank you for sharing -- I feel a nudge to take up my devotions once again. Piety is something that is not for only when it is convenient. (that is what I am hearing whispered in my ear)
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 12th, 2005 08:38 pm (UTC)
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Piety is something that is not for only when it is convenient.

Exactly. That was a hard lesson for me to learn, but it's been reinforced after that experience.
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From:singingwren
Date:June 10th, 2005 09:55 pm (UTC)
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Wow.
Reading that made me so happy, but it also made my heart hurt. I can't really explain it, but I think you understand.

That reminds me a lot of how I felt when I... accepted? honoured? was honoured by? what do you call that?... Cernunnos. I had been expecting something more extravagant and blatant, a long-awaited sign; but instead there was just this rush of emotional response and knowing within me. I've never heard the words "come into my heart-shrine" before (which I love), but I think I was praying, shyly and desperately, those exact words. The feeling I got, that desire to laugh with ecstacy and also to cry from the sheer overwhelming force of everything... that was my answer. I think I cried not only because it was so intense, but also because it made me realize something -- I had been desperately, terrifyingly lonely in a part of me I'd never noticed before. It was like, how could I not have realized how much that part of me hurt? It was the same when I found paganism in the first place: a heart-wrenching, startling, overwhelmingly powerful inner epiphany with no special trigger. It had been building up a long time and the blossom opened when it was time, and yet despite my knowing and hoping for that moment all alone it was no less shocking when it happened.

I am looking forward to being able to light candles again. It's a simple thing, but sparking a flame is a very meaningful act, and it will be very symbolic the first time I light the flames on my altar. I miss that intensity of prayer. I feel like I too have not been as devoted as I should be. I have prayed to the gods and they have showered me with gifts, and I have delighted in them and offered them my joy to share with me. I have also offered my gratitude, but lately it has been almost automatic. It's not that I don't mean it, it's just that that intensity and focus has not been blazing as it should. My candle wicks are smoking and glowing red... but they lack an open flame.

I will be excited to be my altar when I move into my place. It has to be subtle at first due to visiting parents and all of that, and I don't even know if I will have a good space for it. But, it will be a start. So will the ADF program... I really, really want to LEARN. Remember, you still need to teach me everything you can, because if you don't I will sulk and... uh... not go to Summerland. :)

Thanks a lot for this entry.
I feel all warm and fuzzy inside thinking about our faith. :)
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 12th, 2005 08:42 pm (UTC)
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I've been doing ADF liturgy so long that I've internalized some of the liturgy, with "come into my heart-shrine" being a major borrow. It follows several of the invocations, and I like it because it's so subtle, but tells us so much.

Candles themselves are just a tool. I generally work without them, actually, but it was amazing what happened when I lit them all. I've been lighting them all each night since, and there's still that strong wonder.

Haha. You're going to Summerland. You just have yet to accept it.

And yeah, I'll teach you (and anyone else who asks) everything I know.
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From:smithing_chick
Date:June 10th, 2005 11:54 pm (UTC)
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Very, very cool. I get shivers reading this. :)
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 12th, 2005 08:37 pm (UTC)
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And here I am, thinking, "Shiver me timbers!"
From:bloodlikerain
Date:June 11th, 2005 02:12 am (UTC)
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"We never left," they say to me. "We were always here. There is no shame, there is nothing to forgive. Let us hold you."

And I do.

I bask in their love and their warmth.


I'm always amazed by how "at home " I feel in front of my alter. I'm always amazed that I can really really FEEL their love, and often it hurts much just to open myself up to it, but then it feels like coming home.
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 12th, 2005 08:37 pm (UTC)
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Altars are wonderful things. They make a house a home.
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From:ladytempest13
Date:June 12th, 2005 04:53 pm (UTC)

I wish i could find my faith again...

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Your post was amazing darling. I long to feel the way you felt once again, but i am so lost that it would find a team of sherpas and a pack of bloodhouds a year to find me and at this rate i have no idea what they would find.To see your amazing piety is like a light in my at times very dark world and i thank you for sharing it. So much of our time on this world is spent on the mundane and to see your focus on that light that is so far from mundane, well tonight i may see if the Gods are still with me. i fear there as been a mutal forsakening among us and i am feeling it is time to show my heartlite to them again. Thank you for giving me strength. ::big hug from this complete stranger::
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From:chronarchy
Date:June 12th, 2005 08:36 pm (UTC)

Re: I wish i could find my faith again...

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Like I said, one night does not a piety make, no more than the crust makes a pie. It's gotta have some real filling.

Piety, to me, is a never ending path. The path is always there, and you always know the way to it. You just have to trust yourself enough to find your way back on it.

Believe me, it's there.

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