Oops.

Scheduled a chat for today, and wound up going to do something else that made me not here until later.

Ah well….

So, somebody a few days ago seemed to be insisting to my that my interest in Hellenic religion was “purely academic, to supplement [my] image as an aesthete”. As flattering as that may be to some people, it really pissed me off because, as “logical and objective” as I tend to be on various e-mail lists, I had also been hoping that I was saying just enough to clue people in to the fact that there is real and very genuine spirituality behind it all. It turns out that a few people can tell, and I’m very grateful for that (at the very least, it tells me that I’m doing something right).

As I’m sure some have seen me state a hundred times before, I’ve learned to balance a lot of really weird shit with logic and objectivity — it’s not about anything more than balance with me. I suppose one could say that if I didn’t care so much about how I appeared to others… blah, blah, blah… but frankly, we all care, to some degree or another, in some way or another, about how we appear to others — and I could easily argue that a certain person cares so much about appearing “mystical” that he’ll throw the logic-baby out with the bathwater and go vampire-hunting.

A friend asked me on AIM earlier this evening how i feel about “mysticism”, and I’m very open to mystical aspects of religion — like I said, the logic and objectivity is to balance a lot of weird shit. Like, my father, who didn’t even have a heart condition, apologised to my for being such a shit dad two months and change before he died of a freak heart attack at 59. His doctor had just given him a clean bill of health a month to the day before (so my step-mother said). It definitely was one of the things to help shake out those Atheistic leanings, to put it politely, but at the same time, I think that to fully appreciate the “mystical” side of reality, we have to fully appreciate the mundane. To me, this means being able to find some chord of logic to evaluate it all by. Maybe your logic is less hard-nosed than mine, and that’s fine for you.

I also think that there is a range of “dignified” manners to deal with mysticism, and a range of less-than-dignified manners. Not just when relaying these experiences to others, but I think that if we lack a certain dignity when it’s just us by ourselves, it makes that dignity “fake” with others. But for all of these experiences, both external (like the peculiar timing of my father’s death) and internal, I’ve understood a lot of it to be very personal, so I don’t like to talk about it.

In fact, I think I can even say as much that, after one of the few instances that I talked about some such “weird” experience on some e-mail list, I got a very “cold” reaction from the Theoi afterward. It literally felt like somebody opened up my chest and put my heart on ice. It hurt and I was in tears to the point that my room-mate (a pretty staunch Atheist) could even hear me over loud music and opened my bedroom door to ask what was wrong.

So, yeah, for the most part, I don’t talk about things other than devotional rituals, crafty shit, and if I’m doing a divination for somebody, obviously I’ll talk about that. I don’t talk about much else, I fear the reactions over things that may have been meant for me — and after that one time, I’m not sure I’m the best judge of what *was* for me and me alone or not. Occasionally, I’ll sort of get a “signal” that something is for the good of other Hellenistai — like my posts about deities, heroi, nymphai; in part because a lot of those articles are written from a different “head space”, if that makes any sense.

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3 thoughts on “Oops.

  1. Its not a big secret that I am a mystical person, even if some of the particulars of that are at least as far as the population at large goes. I discuss such things under filtered posts on my Livejournal, usually before a crowd of other very mystically oriented people who have some of the same or at least very similar things going on themselves. They serve as part of my system of checks and balances, and I’ve been very lucky to have attracted some of those people to me, there are several things that probably would have been far harder to deal with alone. However, if you’re not mystically oriented or if I don’t get the sense that you would be open to such things, I usually leave them out of the discussion. Public lists and forums are absolutely out of the question.

    Because as you said, some things are more private, and talking about them to all and sundry cheapens it, and in my opinion can be disrespectful to the god involved that may prefer you show some discretion. And also because I’m not interested in convincing the world that I am legitimate. You’re allowed to believe or not believe in whatever you would like, if you don’t wish to be exposed to Weird Ass Mystical Shit, that’s your right and there is no point or purpose in my trying to shove it down your throat anyway. Another person’s belief, or lack thereof, neither adds to nor detracts from my relationship with my deities or the reality of the strange stuff I *know* I’ve experienced; its nice to hear that I come off as sincere and devoted, but its also not necessary.

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  2. Vampire hunting is somewhat silly, I concede. Thankfully, Gmail groups by conversation and lets those of us more interested in other things skip over that.

    You never came across as interested in Hellenism from a purely academic route . . . so maybe they just weren’t looking in the correct places or choosing to see only what verified that claim? We all have mystical and mundane inklings that we need to balance to attain reason. Even though you like studying, that is a form of religious devotion that the Gods likely admire. Your snippets on practice do prove that you have more than just academia going for you, though — like that experience with the dripping faucet.

    I understand what you mean, I think. There are many things about my relationship with the Theoi that I won’t share with others, and there are some things that I will . . . it really depends on the audience and gut instinct.

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