Holy shit, more than a year since I posted one of these o.o Soooo much shit has happened, how do I shovel it into a path? XD This is going to be a bit of a review and ruminate post, so please pardon me as I go ramblin’ along for a while.
A lot of maturation has happened. (Its a little hard to go through cancer and all the stuff that surrounds it without gaining at least a little perspective, I guess.) No real solidification, because my practices rarely stay the same two weeks in a row anymore, but definite maturation. And you know what? That’s alright with me. I don’t really need to find “The Perfect And Most Unassailably Amazing Practice Evar” because I know that there will always be something better or more appropriate. Life never stops moving, so why should a spiritual path bog down in ritual mud? Even touchstones and Big Revelations can change (remember the Path post where I realized the bit about Land, Sea, and Sky? About the only bit of that that still really applies is me as an axis mundi. The rest, no matter how neat and nice, just doesn’t fit any more- especially since I’m drifting farther and farther from a strictly Celtic worldview.)
I’ve come to the conclusion that I will probably never be a part of a “defined” path. This is my very own path through briar and blood and shit and sunshine, and I doubt anybody else would want to try slogging along on it. I don’t have to justify why I’m contemplating contacting a mostly fictional individual to anybody I don’t like or care for. I don’t need to double check UPG against temple-mates because- OMG- I don’t have any. If I want to curse the friggin’ tits off someone I don’t like, the only people I have to justify it to are my gods, my spirits, and myself. I follow the inspirations that I find, the breadcrumbs that nourish the soul, and wander accordingly.
When I wrote the last Path entry, I would never have thought I’d have a relationship with Baron, much less the sort I do have. I didn’t think that I’d end up releasing the Owl, either. I was still seeing a small corner of the Lady and connecting superficially with Manannan. Gaining perspective may be painful and painstaking, but it is very worth it; I can look back now and appreciate just how far I’ve come, can look back at the pretty little path curling backwards from my feet and feel accomplishment. Of course, I can’t look for long or the path won’t go any farther. Such is the price of going your own way. Sometimes I wonder if its really a path at all, or just footsteps in sand that hold together a few paces, and then get washed away by the tide…
There have been several individual internet people that gave me some tools to hack the path out with and some ideas to make it smoother. Thanks to a lady named Snow, I started getting more used to the idea of incorporating modern “lore” into usable practice (mad tea parties and bottles full of magic. Granted, early exposure to chaos magic probably helped smooth the way for such acceptance, but she jump-started my actual use of it.) I also lay the start of my current Key kick squarely at her feet. I wish she could have stayed (not only because she made some kick-ass stuff, as well). Ms. Graveyard Dirt inspired the cultivation of some magic lady-balls by the contagious nature of her bowling-ball-sized bits of vaginal fortitude. (I do not steal thy dress, oh lovely lady. Your garden hoe, possibly, but not your dress 😉 ). Scylla at Root and Rock is just plain amazing and has caused me to expand my thinking (including but not limited to some severe weeding out of wishy-washy-wannabe-Neo-Wicca funk.) I also fully realize that other people who read their websites probably won’t see them as I did. (I could get into why I think that is, but it doesn’t really matter.)
I think one of the biggest things I’ve learned is confidence. I haven’t mastered it, but just getting up and doing is getting a hell of a lot easier than it used to be. When you accept that you will never be “perfect”, and that your pre-supposed idea of “perfection” is a fallacy bred to a lie crossed with a big pile of crap, it really is quite liberating. Don’t aim for perfection, because that implies that there is nothing beyond it (if you manage the impossible and attain it in the first place). Aim for “better”. Better than it is, better than it was. “Better” can be achieved and a new “better” aimed for. And that achievement of better gives you confidence, rather than failing at perfection and feeling like you can achieve nothing.
So, what have I achieved? Better understanding of imagination and its effects on magic. Better appreciation of some of the Mysteries. Better relationship with the Land, both local and in general. Better grasp of the difference between magic I do and magic the spirits do. And not least of all, a better idea of what my strengths and weaknesses are. Not bad, methinks. And definitely not ~perfect~.