Okay, so I just got out of my Anthro class and I had a one page midterm that just kicked. my. ass. Okay, so maybe it didn't kick my ass, but it was pretty mind-blowing for something so short. My brain is officially dead.... I'm not even sure how I'm typing this right now, because my brain is definitely malfunctioning, but I decided to do a blog post to blow off some steam. And hey, I'm posting more regularly, so get excited about that!
Other than brain melting, life has been good! I've actually been going out more, trying not to stay inside studying all the time. For the past three weeks or so I've been going out to (cheap) dinner with my friend Angela, who just recently moved down here for school. This has been a particularly joyous occasion for me because we have spent the last few years only texting or calling each other on occasion to keep in touch, and now that we live in the same town again we can go out and reconnect and do all the goofy stuff we did in high school (only now we're adults, and she has a car, so we have even MORE opportunities to do goofy stuff). It's been great being able to hang out with friends after spending so much time feeling like a loner out here in the bay area.
One of the things that is awesome about Angela is that she is a great listener, and she genuinely wants to hear what you have to say, so our dinners have been long hours of conversation about every aspect of our lives: relationships, religion, school, faith, our futures, etc. One of the things that we talked about a few weeks ago was our different religious beliefs. We are totally different when it comes to religion and spirituality-- she is a practicing Catholic, and I'm a practicing, experimental baby pagan. If we were two different people, this would be a hindrance to our friendship. However, I think that in this instance our differences have made us better friends because we've forced ourselves to be open-minded to each others' ideas and beliefs, even if we don't agree with them or abide by them, and this mutual acceptance of our differences has provided a safe space to really delve into the complexities of our lives. It allows us to talk! I don't feel the need to censor myself because I know we can have honest communication. So when we began talking about religion, I got pretty into it. Anyway, she asked about pagan holidays and different gods and goddesses, and as I was explaining the Sabbats and what they represent I suddenly realized I don't have a whole lot of knowledge about different pantheons, and even when it comes to the Sabbats dedicated to specific deities I lack the in-depth knowledge in those deities. Why is that? (I thought to myself). And then we talked about patron gods/goddesses and patron saints, and I realized I didn't have a patron goddess either.
I felt a little inadequate. I mean, there's no requirement to worship a specific pantheon or to have a patron goddess or god or spirit or whatever, and a lot of people I know worship a kind of all-encompassing deity (or deities if they are polytheists) as opposed to specific named deities (examples being gods like Apollo or Cernunnos, and goddesses like Brighid or Ishtar or Kali). So it's not necessary for me to just pick a pantheon, especially if I'm not sure if I'm even polytheistic or not. However, I do have a wish to explore different mythologies and lore, and to learn about different deities, and if that results in finding a patron goddess (or god, but that's a little far fetched in my case) then so be it. I'm very hesitant to go out specifically searching for a partron goddess, or a specific pantheon to worship, pretty much because a lot of these pantheons come from cultures to which I don't belong. I make no claims (at least ethnically or genealogically) to the Egyptian mythos, or to the Celtic or Norse or Native American mythoi. And so just picking one would make me feel like am involving myself in a culture I have no business involving myself in. I'm not sure if that's entirely fair, 1) religions are not and should not be exclusive to race or ancestry and 2) because I'm most likely a mix of all different kinds of races that ally themselves with different religions and spiritualities, and as a result I should be able to make claims to multiple pantheons (but I don't know that, I can only guess).
Anyway, as a result of this conversation and the inner-workings of my mind, I've begun to peruse amazon and various book stores in search for some books on mythology, with no particular god or goddess in mind. And if it's possible, I feel even more lost than before (sad day). but as I continue my spiritual journey and research, I'll try to keep and optimistic mindset, especially in this blessed month of October (WAHOO!!!!). Anyway, if any of you actually care about what results in this research, I will keep you all posted.
Wow, I've already spent all my free time on this post. I'm off to my next class to learn things and make sure my college money goes to good use.