..and to no other shall you breath a word, than to those who have already heard.”
Okay, that tripe up there isn’t really from a Silver RavenWolf book; I wrote it on the fly for a sickeningly catchy headline. The concept is actually related to my topic: my religion in the face of the Owner’s lack thereof.
I’m a Druid-in-process. I most strongly align with the Ar nDraiocht Fein approach to Gaelic druidism. I’ve been wandering around the NeoPagan cosmos since I was in high school. I wasn’t one of those “I just watched The Craft and want to cast a love spell” girls. (I’ve actually never seen that movie but I understand that it really pisses off a lot of Wiccans, lol) I hid my books under the mattress, didn’t wear identifiable jewelry until my last year of school, and didn’t really talk much about it with anyone. It was personal. My religion now is personal.
Compounding my issue with having been naturally secretive about my pagan beliefs, N is not very secretive about being a cold-logic-Atheist. When you’re dead, you’re dead, and that’s the end. There is no sky-fairy or Spaghetti Monster fucking with your destiny. He considers religion to be a crutch and shakes His head at the idea of so many people the world over that have lost their senses and believe in magical thinking as the reason they live their lives.
N has this unnatural ability to lead me to His conclusions without overtly pushing me there. About once a year, I start wondering if He’s right…are there really no Gods or Goddesses, no Ancestors, am I just praying and offering gifts to empty airwaves? Am I having an extremely common hallucination called religious experience? And each year I spend a few weeks with my crisis of faith, waffling between what I believe to be true and what He does…because ultimately, I truly believe He is a smarter, more reasonable and more believable person than I. I don’t trust myself as much as I trust Him. So if He thinks it’s all bunkum…
When actively practicing my faith, I do it so freaking low down that He rarely ever knows. I do as much as possible while He’s away at work. During the summer I might “go out for a stroll” and do my work then. I think my bedtime prayers in my head, I say my morning devotionals after He leaves for work or goes outside for chores. I avoid Him being exposed to any of my workings. I’m not afraid that He will ban such silly superstitions…if He was going to, He already would have. He has no interest in removing me from my religion forcefully. I avoid Him because I don’t want Him to think I am silly, pathetic or amusing.
His impression of me, His view of me, is hugely important. In an egalitarian relationship, it would probably be important to an unhealthy extent, but that’s not what we are doing, so oh well. So the very thought of Him seeing me kneeling in front of a burning censor, sprinkling incense and mumbling invocations, burying the feast and saying good night to my Ancestors, or even blessing His house each Mabon makes me twitch. I’d hear Him inside my head, detracting and voicing skepticism and the inter-connectedness of the rite would be gone.
It’s a more adult version of “Out of sight, out of mind”.
Another pitfall regarding O/p and religion is that many covens would not accept me because of my relationship dynamic. Not only do they bridle at the idea of a person’s freewill being given to another human, they get quite bent when I make it clear that there will be no secrets between The Man and I. No naked rituals. No re-enactments of “The Great Rite”. Even my belief that I am a lesser mortal than N (and other people) really riles up most pagans. I do find it highly amusing that a person can devote their free will to a particular deity, but not a Higher Mortal.
So I do my rituals and routines outside of His influence. I stay solitary to avoid pissy Pagans unwilling to extend the courtesy of tolerance to a different style of love. I cling to the writings of Higher Mortals like Raven Kaldera as proof that O/p and Paganism can co-exist peacefully outside of my relationship. I stay lonely, but mostly fulfilled. In the shadows and tween-times, but definitely there.