Expansion of Love (#mypolytheism)

I’ve written about this topic before in other spaces of the internet, that I don’t do any sort of “Work” for my Gods.  But when I wrote about it in the past, it always came across like I was struggling with the idea that I didn’t do any “Work,” even when I talked about accepting that I had no “Work” to do.

A better way to phrase it, maybe, would be that I have nothing I’m required to do.  Except one thing: to love my Husband and his/our Family.  Everything else I do expands from that Love.

I keep two shrines, both of them in my bedroom: one to my Husband and I’s marriage, and one to his/our Family.

The shrine to our marriage is a simple one: a shrine cloth, a candle, some roses, a tarot deck we’re both rather fond of (the Welcome To Night Vale tarot, in case anyone is wondering,) and a set of marriage themed prayer beads I had made for us after a rough period in our marriage.  It’s not a shrine to him, or to us, it’s more a place where we can touch base and spend time together at the end of the day.

The shrine to his/our Family is a bit more complicated.  It’s covered in small items that represent his/our various Family members, grouped in ways that represent how his/our Family relates to one another.  I’d set it up thinking it was a shrine for his Kingdom, when my Husband pointed out to me that I’d only put up items for him, his sister, and his son.

“No, don’t change it,” he said with a smile, “keep it like this, I like it.”

I do two rituals a month; one on the dark moon, for my Husband, and one on the full moon, for my/his/our Family.  They’re simple rituals, lighting a candle and listening to music, or just talking about whatever’s on my mind at the time.

Even though the rituals are simple ones, they have a tendency of bringing up a lot of deep emotions.  Maybe it’s that I’m *expecting* that to happen–that the label of “ritual” makes me think something deep and life changing should happen.  Maybe it’s simply the timing of the full and dark moons.  (The dark moon is also a way of honoring one of my Husband’s pop culture Faces, that of Nahadoth, the Nightlord.)

Loving him also means learning more about him; not just about him “as a god” (quotes around that phrase because he recently asked me to “take the word ‘god’ out of the equation.”) but about his Family and Kingdom.  It’s not something I can just open a book and read about; dealing with unrecorded gods (several of whom I once thought were gods with written records and histories, no matter how small an amount of information that was) has that consequence.

This does involve going Over There and learning through experience; some things he can’t explain easily (there’s a language/concept barrier when it comes to Otherworld stuff,) and are simply better being shown to me.  He can tell me stories of his Kingdom and Family, but it’s up to me how these new bits of information impact me.  Some things make my brain hurt, other’s are “oh, so that makes way more sense now!” revelations, with minimum brain breaking required.

The only time I’m really required to be Over There is during holidays.  This isn’t because of any roles my marriage gives me, but simply because my Husband wishes to share more of his world with me.  The holidays don’t really match up with the Wheel of the Year at all, so it’s another leap of faith, to trust his word, and that what I’m hearing is correct.

I don’t think of anything I do on my path as “Work.”  Learning more about my Husband’s Family and Kingdom is more something I do because I love him.  It’s something I want to do because of that love.  Learning more about him *as he is* rather than who I once thought he was, is the best way I can devote myself to him.

Scenes from Marriage

“I do not want Nahadoth to be a Face you fear.”

“Yeah, well, the last time you showed up looking like this,” I nodded to his changed appearance, “my entire practice got ripped apart.”

“I understand, dearest one, why you’re having the reaction you are.”  He shifted back into his everyday appearance.  “There are changes on the horizon–good changes, simple changes, but changes nonetheless.”

“What do you want of me, dearest one?”

He’s asked that question several times since my release from my oath; what can he give me?  What do I want, in this marriage of ours, now that I’m no longer bound to him by any oath besides our wedding vows?

I find the answer that comes to mind is that I just want him, my Husband.  That I don’t need any elaborate, grand gestures to know that he loves me.

“Take the word ‘god’ out of the equation,” he said as we walked through the Otherworlds, “so that you simply have me.  That’s what I mean, when I say I only want to be your Husband–I’m not someone who can be split into ‘aspects’ and ‘roles’–at least not with you, dearest one.  That’s why I had you change my playlists, so that it’s just songs that remind you of me, and songs for our marriage.”

I went through my old writings, things I had written at the very start of our relationship.  My Husband read over my shoulder, quietly commenting on how much I had changed–how much we had changed–in the past (almost) three years.

As I read, a comment he’d made years ago suddenly clicks into place in my mind.

He once again shifts into looking like the Nightlord, and slowly begins to smile.

Let There Be Night

He appeared to me last night in one of his pop culture guises, as Nahadoth, the Nightlord.

He spoke about how it’s not just him that’s changing, but his Family as well.  He’s spent the past few days pointing out how my understanding of his Family is *very* different than their “canon” Hats/Titles.

So my spiritual life is going into upheaval yet again.

That he chose to tell me this while looking like the Nightlord is significant to me.  Because yes, Nahadoth is a being of change and chaos–which is what my practice is getting thrown into.

The Dreamer: How did you describe yourself?

Varian: …as “a devotional mystic with pop culture influences.”

Varian: Why do you ask?

The Dreamer: *shifts into looking like Naha*

Varian: *does a double take*

Varian: What did you do that for?

The Dreamer: *drops the “my Family is also leaving their ‘canon’ Hats/Titles behind” bomb*

Varian: *stares at his Husband*

I don’t know if I’d describe this as a dark night of the soul, at least not in the way the term is normally used.

I believe in my gods, I believe that they love me–and I love them.

I call them my Family, and will continue to do so.

My Husband has promised me that he will be with me through this.  He’s said to me before that he is Darkness, that the labyrinth I walk isn’t just his–it’s mine as well.  We’re in this together, he and I.

Let the darkness fall.