Ending of the Newbie Devotee Challenge

Day 20 was a conversation with your deity, and what the Queen and I talked about felt much too personal to post online.  I’m posting two pieces today because the wi-fi has been off and on the past two days.

Day 21: How has your relationship with your deity changed over the course of this challenge? Has it stayed the same? Have the two of you gotten any closer? Are you pleased with the results?

I would say that the Queen and I have gotten closer as a result of the challenge.  We’re both happy with the results of the challenge, and I’m really glad I did it.

More Divination (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 19: Set aside some quality time for you and your deity. Using a communication method of your choice, discuss the events of this challenge with them. Tell them why you took up this challenge. Ask for their opinion of all of the work you put into it.  Discuss their response.

[After checking that she’s available to talk]

What did you think of my doing the challenge overall?

King of Wands

She’s happy about it, and thinks that this has been a good way for me to take charge of my own devotional life.

I began this challenge to learn more about you, before becoming your devotee.

The Chariot (rev.)

I sensed a nod from her, and she’s reminding me that becoming her devotee is a slow process, like the growth of a tree.

Family (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 18: More research! Today, research the deities that are either related to or close to your deity.

The King of All Darkness is her twin brother.  They’re not related through blood in the biological sense, but through a blood oath and rune magic.

The Lady of Grain and Sunlight is her adopted daughter.  She’s a dying-and-rising goddess that rules over the Wilds, and is very close to her mother.

The Great Tree is her Parent in the mythic sense.  Her actual origins are something I know very little about, though she commented that the accident [link] when I broke a branch off the Tree statue makes it looks like she’s coming from the tree.

The Far Ones are her Parents in truth, and the reasons They had for forming her are Theirs alone.

Offerings (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 17: How did your deity respond to the different offerings you gave? Discuss their response.  

I pulled out the music divination to ask her about it.

Are you available to talk?

“Awakenings,” by Symphony X

Upbeat song, so yes.

What do you think of the offerings I’ve made for you with this challenge?

“Nothing Like the Rain,” by The Awakening

Upbeat song, so she likes them.  From the lyrics, I get the feeling that my healing work is the better offering, rather than anything I can put on her shrine.

Okay, I may draw you a picture once I find my sketch book.

“A New Dawn to Rise,” by Blutengel

Upbeat goth song, she likes the idea.

*********

I was squinting at the goth songs, since that’s her twin’s favorite style of music.  She then pointed out that that’s a style of music that brings me comfort, and that I feel the most like “myself” with.

How will their opinion of these offerings influence future offerings you make to them?

I’m going to do what I’ve been doing, my morning/evening prayers to her, and occasional offerings such as art or music as I feel drawn to do so.

Music (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

I’m skipping day 14, since I can’t find my sketch book, and day 15 because I couldn’t get a moodboard to work on WordPress.

Day 16: Create a song list that makes you think about your deity. Give a brief reason for choosing each song, and provide links to youtube videos for other people to enjoy! You can devote the energy you put into this project as an offering for your deity.

I’ve been looking forward to this, because music is one of the main ways I connect to Otherworld People.

This is a video heavy post, so the rest is under a cut.

Read More »

Poetry (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 13: Write a poem for your deity. Use you compiled list of information as inspiration. Give the poem to your deity as an offering.

Mushrooms exist in a state of decay,
and this, too, is a part of life.

That growth slowly rotting, the pain
in my Heart falling away, to bear
the clean bones of my suffering.

Mother Death, help me know
freedom and joy in Light.

Learning (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 12: Reflect on what you’ve learned over the past 11 days.

I’ve learned more about her as a goddess, but more importantly, I’ve learned that becoming her devotee is going to be a slow, gradual process.  That’s the pace she wants–and my path with her is more about healing myself and my life Here, rather than anything major Over There.

Do you feel like you have learned more about your deity? Are there still aspects of your deity that you don’t understand/are unclear?

I know there’s more to learn about her, especially about Darkness in times past (and I feel her raised eyebrow at that.)  The reason I’m curious about that, is because her shrine is becoming covered in ravens/crows, which is a reference to Darkness in a very distant past.  So I’m curious about how that deals with my practice and relationship with her today, in modern times.

I’d like to learn more about her as a goddess of death–is she a death goddess in the sense of the ending of life, or like Death the tarot card, which is about major changes in life?

Runes (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 11: Try using a different method, one that you have either never used or rarely used, to try speaking to your deity. Discuss the results.

I rarely use runes, even though the Queen has told me that she wants her own set, made of wood (which I’ve ordered, since I lack the carving skills to make my own set.)  I downloaded an app on my phone, since my sea stone runes are still lost in storage somewhere.

Are you available to talk?

Kenaz

A rune of spirituality, a clear “yes.”

Okay, anything specific you want to talk about?

Laguz

This rune is about water, healing, and about Life related energy.

Is this about the Heart Thing?

Mannaz

A rune about the self, which is what the Heart symbolism links back to.  It’s about healing, especially healing from my past.

Okay, does the Heart symbolism have anything to do with be becoming your devotee?

Eihwaz

A rune of enlightenment and purposefulness.  Yeah, this sounds like her and what being her devotee means.

Okay, I have a feeling that I’m just skimming the surface of the runes.  Anything else?

The rune I drew felt “wrong,” I’m taking that as a “no.”

As I said in the reading, I feel like I’m just skimming the surface of the runes.  I’m aware that, like tarot, they can be incredibly deep.  I think that once I get a set specific for her, that readings with her might become easier when using runes.

Divination (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 10: What method(s) do you usually use to contact your deity? (Tarot, godphone, etc.) Why do you like using that method?

My favorite form of divination is music.  Not only is it the most discreet, but it’s also a good way to check in quickly, or get an answer to a simple question.  Music can also give tone (and words in the form of lyrics) that something like tarot just can’t get across.

The Queen does have a tarot deck that belongs to her/her spirits.  It’s the Raven’s Prophecy deck, and I’ve got a reading with it here [link.]  I like it because the art fits her, it’s easy to shuffle and read, and here’s zero nudity in it.

I have a somewhat working godphone, but I often use tarot or shufflemancy to back it up.  I find that if the Queen speaks to me, that it helps for me to back up what she said with divination of my own.

Scheduals (Newbie Devotee Challenge)

Day 9: Discuss your daily/weekly/monthly/etc. worship “schedule.” What do you do for your deity? What offerings do you give? How often do you pray? And so on. Are you happy with how much/little time you give your deity? If not, what could you do to change that?

My offerings to her are all about my daily life.  I dedicate my exercising to her (and I often listen to death metal while walking,) as well as continuing to care for my health.

I pray to her daily, once in the morning and once in the evening.  I talk to her throughout the day, if she wants to talk and I have the time/spoons.  I ended up having to write a new set of prayers to her, since some of the wording in the traditional evening prayers didn’t translate very well.

MORNING PRAYER

You who keep the Beasts hidden
walk with me in the Light of morning
erase my sorrows, Lady, bring me joy.

You who dwell in the Tree’s shadow
guide me throughout my days,
help me live in the world I see before me.

You are life, my Queen
dwelling always in my Heart
you see the beginning of my days.

EVENING PRAYER

Mother of Darkness
may I walk in your shadows,
with the comfort of your Love in my Heart

Mother of Beasts,
may I embrace parts of me I cannot love,
may I see beauty, and transform hatred to Love.

Oh Death, let me stand in the Tree’s shadow
may you guide my footsteps ever onward,
and may I be surrounded by your Light.