I’ve got the second part of the trip review coming up soon. There’s a lot to write about on Glacier National Park and Medicine Wheel….however, before then — something that’s been churning around the brain for a bit (as most of my thoughts tend to do)…
One thing that long trips provide is a lot of time to talk – and to really get into the depth of a subject. Most of the conversations rolled around the political vein — which I tend to keep out of (for the most part). But eventually the topic rolls around to religion and beliefs…
C: So you’re a Pagan? You mean, like worshipping trees and dirt and stuff?
Me: Sort of. More along the lines of having a reverence for the Natural side of Life and worshipping the Gods. I’ve talked a bit about this in my podcast over the years.
C: You have a podcast? So, you’re like a Pagan media bigwig?
Me: (snorting through my laughter) Not at all! I have *maybe* 200 total listeners! I’m nowhere near the point of being any kind of dent in the Pagan media world. Besides, my podcast is about how I manage to live my daily life within my Pagan beliefs.
C: So you’re not a Pagan Pope or something like that?
Me: (laughing even harder) Nooo!! I’m not even sure there is such a thing as a Pagan Pope!
C: Ok, so you run a podcast and tell people how they need to be following some form of a Pagan gospel or something like that, right? Like a Grimoire that details how Pagans should live?
…and the conversation continued on and on. In some instances, it was a fairly serious talk – and in others, well it had its moments of being somewhat immature. But then, that’s life – particularly for me. There’s a lot of serious moments sprinkled with a lot of fun moments — and a lot of other moments/emotions in-between.
I hear from a lot of folks who express thanks for me expressing the way I live my life – that it is helpful for them to see/read/hear that Paganism doesn’t have to or need to be about activism, social causes, priest-/priestess-hood, or other similar perspectives. That’s probably the one dictum that I provide to people – Paganism is about living your life through your own personal beliefs. At least, that’s what it is for me. I don’t live, eat, shit and breathe my beliefs…I don’t need to do that. I just need to live my life and honor the Gods, Goddesses and Kami in a way that works for me. That’s all.
For me, its really just that simple. I don’t need a ritual to honor the Gods (the inclusive version here, not just the male aspects of deity). My daily life is a ritual — a little more free-form than most people would agree to as a ritual — but its a ritual for me. It works for me. I don’t have the answers for everyone…nor do I want to have the answers for everyone. Each person takes their own steps on their Daily Path…well…ya’ll have read this particular perspective from me before…you likely get the picture.
Interestingly enough, providing a small piece of synchronicity for me when I cam back from the trip to Montana, I read a blog posting somewhere (and I can’t recall exactly where) about the concept of Pagan celebrity. I’ll be honest, when C mentioned the concept of a Pagan Pope in relation to my podcast – I cringed inwardly. Celebrity is about the furthest thing I really want in this lifetime. It seriously is one of the reasons I don’t advertise the podcast much. Much like Medicine Wheel in the Bighorn Mountains, I keep “From the Edge of the Circle” off the main roadways…the Edge is there for those who seek it out or bring their friends to hear. I don’t want any status or celebrity from it. The Edge is a gift…mostly for the Solitairy seeker, but its there for anyone to digest from it. I’m not a holy man, I’m not a guy with the answer – fuck, I’m trying to find the answers myself. If I don’t have all those for me — how can I have those answers for someone else??
I can show people the Path that I walked to get where I am. I can show them where the rocks were slippery for me and where the footing was fairly solid for me. However, they may be far more sure-footed than I am — and not find those rocks as slippery. They might be wearing inappropriate footgear for the Path, and slip where I had better footing. Who knows?? I know I don’t…