I was reading Lizzie's Logic Blog where she is talking about the separation between our mundane lives and our magickal lives. I started to respond to it and my response got so long I felt it didn't belong in her comments, so I wanted to respond here.
Please go and read her blog too.
I have seen this discussed before, probably brought it up myself at least once, but I think this is a very important topic for pagans to think about.
We live in a society where many people go to church on Sunday, maybe go to a weekly social gathering of some kind that is church related on another day, pray when a disaster happens or they are scared out of their wits over something and that is called religion. Many of us were raised that way. There is very little crossover between daily life and religion... religion is Over There and daily life is here in the trenches.
This comes out of dogmatic, hierarchical religions where SOMEBODY ELSE tells you how to relate to deity. Where a book tells you what deity wants from you and on Sunday somebody stands up in front of you and tells you how to be a better person (or get what you want or stop sinning.... depending on the brand).
Well, SOMEBODY ELSE isn't with you all the time and even in this ultra Christian, puritanical society people look at you funny if you are carrying the book around all the time and constantly thumbing through it for guidance for the next 10 minutes.
And here is where pagans need to THINK about what they are doing and not just replace the god of Abraham with the god of whatever mythology you like.
Paganism is DIFFERENT. Not just in names and dates. IT IS DIFFERENT.
Paganism is about learning about deity for yourself, making decisions for yourself, taking responsibility for yourself, TALKING TO THE DIVINE in whatever form you perceive...FOR...YOUR...SELF.
All of the classes and books and podcasts and ALL of that is supposed to help you think for yourself, not do your thinking for you. If you are listening to a great pagan podcast in exactly the same way as you would listen to a minister deliver a Sunday sermon.....then YOU DON'T GET IT.
You are supposed to THINK about connecting with deity and then you are supposed to DO IT yourself...not let someone else lead you around by the nose or tell you in graphic detail how to do it.
If you are not connected to deity by yourself, if your paganism is restricted to circle or podcasts or classes being taught by a witch who did the hard work and figured out what works for him/her..... Then PLEASE go back to being Methodist or whatever, because you are just practicing Christianity under a different name.
[Lizzie is about now, VERY thankful that I didn't put this entire rant in her blog.]
Here are some very simple ways that I try to make sure that my pagan beliefs affect my everyday life. Tiny rituals all day long connect me to spirit, ground me and serve to remind me about what is important and what is not. I am not some goody goody, I just die laughing at the thought, but neither am I a go-to-church-on-Sunday-Christian.
I am a daughter of the Goddess, I am part of this living planet and I try to remind myself of this all day long, as many times as I can remember to.
I drive to work early, around sunrise, so it is easy for me to think of the Elements and make a little ritual out of driving to work. It gets interrupted sometimes while I rant about the driver that ran a red light in front of me, but it serves to bring me back to spirit and to remember to ask the Elements to watch out for me as I drive to work, just as I ask them to look out for me when I cast a circle and call on them to protect it. Same Elements.
Today I am working on the computer, listening to blogtalk radio, doing laundry and playing with the dogs. I am also burning a candle and incense in honor of Bast and thinking about her influence in my life. I am planning for Ostara, and as I watch the fog lift and the sun come out, thanking Goddess for a beautiful world and her beautiful energy, which I want to tap into more often.
No Sunday sermons, no dividing line between magickal practice and mundane practice. Try it, it's easy once you start making it a habit. It can change your life.
And that is the end of my rant.