Recently, I realized that ancient stories hold such foreign meaning for me that they are unlikely to be very helpful in my spiritual dealings, at least at this juncture. I’m not the brightest bulb on the string, and I’m not very well-read. In coming to grips with certain personal realities, I’ve discovered the need to develop my own, unique way of communicating with the Divine as I understand it. I do not believe in Gods in the sense of beings, I believe in The Force (as dorky as that may sound). I fully respect those who do believe and work with gods, goddesses, or aspects of said deities. These are ideas that intrigue me, but that I just cannot wrap my head around no matter. I do, however, believe in communicating with The Force, my own personal Force as well as the Force of every other thing on the planet (whether it breathes or not), and even things not on this planet. I think symbolism is a very important part of this communication. But what are ancient symbols to me, growing up in a different time and place than these things, and especially if I’m not well-versed in the common meanings and such? And what’s to say that my symbols are any less valid than any others?
So, this is the thought I had after recalling my dreams this morning: my symbols are more meaningful to me than those I do not understand, or would need to spend a lifetime learning about in order to employ them effectively in my own spiritual practice. I am a Cancer, and my past is almost like a lighted path in which I use to move forward. This is how I innately, instinctively know how to keep growing and trundling along, by reviewing my past, my mistakes, my triumphs, the significance to these things along my own path. I can analyze these things more personally than I could use, say, Celtic mythology to apply in my modern life. I find mythology difficult to follow and learn. It’s interesting, but just doesn’t hold my gaze long enough to become a master at these stories. My lack of ability to remember and recall things is a serious limitation when it comes to this sort of thing. The only thing that I can recall with such ease is my own ‘memory-touch’. I must live within these means, and I must not get discouraged by anyone else’s way of doing things. Their way may be perfectly right: for them. But it’s not for me, and that doesn’t make my way wrong.
In recalling my dream, which featured a couple of people from my past (JenB & Andrea), I came to the conclusion that I must figure out what these people represent to me. JenB, whom I had a long term, on and off again friendship that in some ways was deeper than simple girlfriendship, and in other ways nowhere near it, represents a lot of things for me. I had a very complex relationship with her, and there was turmoil throughout. A brief idea of what I think she symbolizes for me: jealousy, betrayal, unrequited love, idolatry, unresolved and misdirected anger, confusion, misunderstanding, lack of clarity, impotence. As for Andrea, who was her true best friend, she represents to me: envy, cleverness, social standing, education, requited friendship, aloofness, luck. So, I find it interesting that I can quickly and easily identify what these people signify for me, while other means of symbolism hold very little meaning, and in fact, utterly confuse me when applied to my own life. I struggle with my lack of cleverness and knowledge (hence Andrea’s presence in my psyche right now) and this theme is very important for me right now. As is my history with JenB, which reeks strongly of disloyalty and un-trustworthiness, and the struggles I have in facing my former self and my past. I was a tomboy growing up, I rarely read books, I was a truant and juvenile delinquent. I cannot pretend to have any real grasp on any of the normal witchy shit that most pagans are into (or that seem to be), I’m just doing my own thang here. I find this a relief and a challenge because I believe spirituality is 100% individual, and yet, when one has a community, it’s nice to be able to apply some similarities with which to relate to. Unfortunately, in the pagan world as in every other religious group, people can start thinking in terms of “the right way” and become dogmatic. I do not subscribe to this as far as spirituality goes. There’s a path for each person which is as wholly individual and unique as the people themselves.
It’s like sacred space, making a circle. My circle is a 3D structure that is actually a spiral, which I send down to connect with the core of the planet, and send up to connect with the vast energy of the universe. And it moves as I move, like a hamster ball. It’s springy, and stretchy, and I can roll it into the kitchen if I need, or to the bathroom, and it doesn’t break. It’s got a spongy feel that if I reach my hand out, it would simply create a suction-like hole to hold energy in as my hand reaches out. Now I’m certainly no expert on paganism, but nor is anyone else inside my mind. The spiral is a creation of my mind, no one else’s. If I envision that it stretches and rolls and glows with glittery flames, than that’s what it is for me. The books have been immensely helpful for me in bringing my focus to my own needs. But that’s where it ends. I just can’t get into the real religious, formal, ceremonial stuff at all. This is probably why I failed to grasp other religions as well. It just doesn’t mean anything to me. But feelings, my own mind, my own realities…that’s where I place my faith.