Pray to the Moon when She is round,
Luck with you will then abound,
What you seek for shall be found
On the sea or solid ground.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Animism: Not a Comfort "Religion"

It really isn't, either. Nor is it either one.

Mama & baby occupy the path, August 9, 2012
Mama & baby occupy the path, August 9, 2012. 

In reference to a disturbing, ironic twist of fate & weird Wyrd-ness, a friend wrote, "you can build shrines... & write poems... (but) Nature is so impersonal... Animism is not a comforting 'religion.'” And it's true, having that sense of being cared for & attended to as an individual creature-being -- a "self" -- is often absent from my practice. Usually, I am ok with that.

When unexpected & difficult situations arise, I sometimes feel betrayed. Intellectually, I know this is a wasted emotion. For if I truly seek immersion in the other-than-human world, I must accept the risks; the risks of disappointment, dissatisfaction, danger, fear, indifference, repudiation, loneliness. If I need comfort, I cannot not seek it from the dispassionate elder gods; the primal forces that drive this world's engine. I must always remember that no one is special.

Instead, I must endeavour to seek reassurance elsewhere in the Web. I often find I look to the constancy, consistency, rhythms & regularity of Their work. I get my Ease & Hope in knowing that in any given circumstance, some of us will be spared, some things can always be relied upon & every now & again, someone, or something throws us a bone. I also try to remember to always cherish my gifts-in-hand.

I find comfort in the big (& relatively permanent) consistencies:

Seeds: Hope incarnate.
Seeds: Hope incarnate.
The Sun rises & sets. Source stability always.

Lady Moon waxes & wanes. Rhythm incarnate.

The Wheel turns with relentless constancy. Winter withers, Spring sprouts.

Stuff is imagined, built, destroyed, decayed. Life begins anew & Life ends anew. You can bet on it.

All the layers of everything -- the depths to the shallows -- are spinning, whirling, cycling, re-cycling.

'Round & round we go. Ride on.

I find comfort in small dependabilities & gifts-in-hand:

Blissful bluff: New territory.
Blissful bluff: New territory.
The cat will crap on the bathroom floor every night. In the morning I will curse him & amid my irritation, remember my love for him. An old gift-in-hand.

Moose will inevitably obstruct the path, especially at this time of year. Forced to explore alternate routes, we will wander into new & blissful territory. A new gift-in-hand.

My family will insure that I have no privacy, no time to myself & never, ever a decent night's sleep. I will have no regrets -- I am their flamekeeper & they walk with my heart in their hands. The most precious gift of all.

Some might call it Pollyanna. I call it survival. Let the chips fall where they may & may we find them to be in our favour. For now I can find comfort in knowing that things will go on until they don't & I will remain thankful for my precious gifts-in-hand. You know who you are.

Mama & baby occupy the same path, October 21, 2012.
Mama & baby occupy the same path, October 21, 2012
& together we celebrated the familiarity.


Anonymous said...

I love your idea of finding comfort in the consistencies in the big aspects of life, the rhythms of the natural world.

Moma Fauna said...

I think it would probably seem odd to some, but I prefer to seek comfort in those consistencies than place my trust or "faith" in entities which, no matter how deep our "relationship," really remain unknowable (& thus, unpredictable). Be they deities, spirits, guides, or whatever we name them, they are free agents & beyond our total comprehension. I never trust a dog 100%. I never trust a bear, ever. Yet a dog & a bear are beings much more knowable for us as human-creatures than than "the gods" or the "spirits"." Maybe it makes me old-school, but I don't think we can/should hope or expect to be coddled. I'll seek my comforts in that which I know & trust & feel appreciation, awe & reverence for the rest.

Moma Fauna said...

Ok. Maybe I lied just a little.

The Moon. I trust in Her, mostly.
Except when I don't.

Nestis said...

Worshiping the chthonic gods (who are more impersonal than not most of the time) I relate to this quite a bit. Contemplating the doom of all that lives is what makes me brave enough to really live my life the way I want to. You spoke of people being flames last night (some people's fires being stronger, brighter, or more attractive to us than others). I think that is absolutely true. Burn bright - all the rest is ash.

Heather Awen said...

thank you for this, it has helped me.

it is just weird being homeless and disabled and no hope in sight for housing as it snows and snows with an illness that can be fatal with no supporters here and know "yeah this may be my time" and on the personal level it hurts.

the human population is far too high and many many of us have to die. it is just weird when you are chosen to be one of the ones to exit to restore the balance of life, to make ammends of a species gone mad. my being chosen is impersonal. it should be monsatan's family and saudi princes and congress,not an eco-pagan. but it goes how it has to go.

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