Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The flow of religion

There's a lot of conversion going 'round these days. Not only my own but also Leah Libresco and Star Foster over at Patheos. I don't like the word 'conversion'. There is a finality and newness to it that I think is short-sighted and incorrect. I have used it before on this blog and I would now like to go back and change it to 'natural religious progression', a term much more fitting to the process.

In my twelve years of practice, I have progressed at least four times; from Neo-Wicca to Technopaganism, from Technopaganism to Hedgewitchery, from Hedgewitchery to Eclectic Religious Witchcraft and from Eclectic Religious Witchcraft on to Hellenismos. Some were easy, some a good lot harder to reconcile with my heart and mind. Progression is never easy as you do step away from a practice you have spent many years building. It takes a lot of guts to finally admit your current practice is not for you anymore. It's a process. It's generally not a sudden thing that happens (although for some, it might be).

All the times I've progressed, it has been a relief. I took all I had learned with me into my next step of religious evolution. I never looked for a new home, but every time I progressed, it was a new homecoming. Right now, Hellenismos is my home but should it turn out to be a temporary one, I will be alright with that as well.

Religion is the process of finding personal truth. For me, it's also a way to reconcile my many thoughts about Divinity with the experiences I have had with it. Which practices I use gives me a framework to do what I feel that needs to be done. I can still do Neo-Wiccan and Eclectic ritual; I have the tools, the knowledge and the faith in the God and Goddess but the Theoi are the Gods that bring me closer to myself and the world around me. That particular framework gives me everything I have ever wished my pervious practices were--and that is why it was natural for me to progress into it.

Was it hard for a while? Yes, I have been open about that on this blog. Letting go of Brighid felt like ripping out my heart. But it was the right thing to do and it was unavoidable. All progression is unavoidable. It's where you should be and that's alright. It's scary but it's alright. There is no judgement in it, no finality. It just is. A natural, religious, progression of your practices.

There's a song I listened to a lot when I went through my latest progression; Billy the Kid's 'Won't Be The Same'. I've included it below. The song is about love but it sums up my feelings through the progression perfectly. Not that odd, considering religion is a fantastic act of love, a leap of faith that brightens your life.

To everyone progressing (and we all are, all the time), I say good luck, and may the Gods be with you. Find your personal truth, wherever it may be.



No comments: