Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Quiet Moments in Temple

Farnham and I took a bit of time tonight to celebrate the weekly Neos Alexandria ritual. I haven't really done it in months, not since October basically. Oh, I've lit a candle and made a perfunctionary nod... I feel it's important to do least that much. But I haven't done more.

With all of the emotional stuff with our newest member of the family leaving (under a bit of duress, unfortunately), I just haven't felt able to face my gods. No, that isn't quite right... I haven't felt like I should face them. I had associated the feeling with the emotional turmoil that happened when sis lost the first baby at 16 weeks; I assumed that the feeling was an indication of miasma.

I am not so sure anymore. Thanks to Sannion's prompting, I decided to briefly touch base with Hecate first. He pointed out that she's the one who ferries the dead through the gates into the Underworld, and she frequently deals with people who are stained with miasma and it doesn't seem to bother her one bit. He's right, of course, and I did know that, but had forgotten it. I'm not sure why, as it's one of her vastly important functions, however it had passed from my mind.

All I did was light a candle last week. I lit the candle, and stood in front of her altar, and spoke with her. Again, I haven't done that in a long time. I used to talk to her frequently, but the toll of the past few months really took a lot out of me (not excuse, just an explanation).

She left me with the sensation that all would be well. And it has been. My mood lightened almost immediately, and I slept well that night, for the first time in weeks. I made it through some extremely stressful moments with reasonably good temper, and have felt much closer to the gods in general.

So tonight, we did a short but more formal NA ritual. I didn't follow any format. I simply washed up carefully, then put on clean clothes and brushed my hair. I entered the shrine area of my room, and began lighting the candles. I lit them all: Zeus and Hera, Aphrodite, Dionysos, Hecate, Nyx, Aesclepius, my household guardians, our ancestors, and the Nymphae. I gave to each a small offering of barley, and words of praise, thought up on the spot. Then I asked a small boon of each of them, to help me be a better worshipper and servant. Then Farnham and I asked the blessings of the gods on some prayer flags we got (yes, cross-cultural and -tradition mixing, so shoot me) and had a long moment of silence.

It wasn't a whiz-bang type of ritual. Nothing spectacular happened. I didn't even have a candle fizzle. But it was peaceful. Sometimes, like now, that's enough.
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