Jump to content
Galaemar Laerareon

Welcome Guest!

Welcome to UK Pagan; The Valley

Like most online communities we require you to register for an account before we give you access to read and post.

Only a small number of our forum areas can be read without registering for an account.

Please consider supporting us to help keep our Website and Facebook groups online. Become a Patron!

Any other late bloomers?


Roundtuit
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi!  Welcome to my self-absorbed drivel.

I don't quite know where to start about this, but after years of trying to be a Christian, I'm exploring being a Pagan.  Actually, I'd go as far as to say I am one, and was before in my late teens and early twenties.  I grew up in an Evangelical household and my parents are now Pentecostal deacons.  I started to question my faith from an early age, and later started to practice Wicca and study legends and folk customs.  I had some health problems that made me a lot more dependent on family.  I don't see any reason to ever let my parents or other family members know about my beliefs as that would be devastating for them, but they ask about church and my spiritual life every time I see them. 

In my mid twenties I started to think that I had to compromise with my parents over my beliefs if they were ever to accept other life choices I made.  I have had relationships they wouldn't accept and didn't want to alienate myself from them even further.  I wanted to be pragmatic.  There was truth in virtually every belief system so I might as well re-adopt Christianity, find a progressive church and live as good a life as I could like that.  So I did that for years, as a secretly pantheistic Christian who went to a church that worshipped God using male, female and gender-neutral pronouns and lived what most people would describe as a secular life outside of church.  I'd left Christianity because so much harm was done in the name of a set of beliefs.  Then I came back because I didn't want to cause harm to my parents in the name of beliefs, religion or the lack of it.  How people are treated should always come first.

Then aged 43, in January during the lockdown, I went 'pop'.  It was like I'd been getting more and more resentful and thirsting after Earth-based spirituality.  It was a need and I'm not sure it can be denied because I need to feel alive.  I've been studying various pagan traditions ever since and have taken a break from church (my vicar knows all of this and is great about it).  Not attending church is unacceptable in my family.  I feel so behind though.  Most people I meet or come across on social media has years of experience and say they've been practicing since they were teenagers.  I once heard someone say that yes, there are many paths up the same mountain but if you keep changing paths you never reach the top.  Do you agree, or not?

Is anyone else here a new older pagan?  Is it at all common?

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please consider supporting us to help keep our Website and Facebook groups online.

Hi, Welcome.

 While I rarely go to bed before three am, I am also in the habit of switching off my phone between uses.  This device is primarily outgoing.

 Many of us have been Christians at some point in our histories.  Experiences vary considerably.  I was heavily involved but just lapsed.  No issues or problems.

I know a lot of Pagans who have switched between different belief sets, pagan and non pagan over the years.  They have a tendency to carry over elements from each crossroads they come to.

 My own beliefs have been evolving for decades.  I don’t suppose that they will change much more but if anyone gives serious thought to their beliefs there must always be the risk of a new realisation.

 Don’t take any notice of what other people say, just be sure that whatever you believe is what you really believe. 
 

There is no top to that mountain.  The road goes ever on. Take any path that leads in a direction that want to go.  Don’t worry about the destination.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, I've been called many things in my time...

I'm also a former Christian, with a chequered history (Anglican, in the guise of the Church in Wales, then Plymouth Brethren with the odd foray into the Baptists along the way).  I fell out with Christianity in the early 2000's, when I was late 30's, early 40's.

Since then, the general nature of my meanderings has remained fairly constant, but the details and contents have changed over time.  That's fine.  The journey is the issue, not the destination.  Ithaca calls, but Phoenician markets and Egyptian cities have the greater import (poetic reference - just means follow your path and hope to arrive late, if at all).  What I believe tomorrow may be very different to what I believe today.  What I believed yesterday is just a stepping stone.

In short, don't worry about what you have been, as it is merely the pathway that got you to what you are, and don't worry about where you are going, there are any number of bye-ways for you to explore.

As to others - I have struggled with family pressures and the tyranny of monotheistic faith.  I understand your position and have no issue with a softly-softly approach such as you describe.  In fact, it is the best way unless you are prepared to create and weather a family rift.

9 hours ago, Moonsmith said:

My own beliefs have been evolving for decades.  I don’t suppose that they will change much more

Dangerous statement.  Talk about tempting fate...!:o_devil:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've had varying degrees and natures of commitment to Christianity since I was at school but I've also always had pagan leanings and for quite a long time now my path has been entirely pagan. It's unproblematic in that my family and friends think it's harmless eccentricity, but I imagine it would be different if I took a strongly pagan stance on something. For me personally it's important to listen to what's going on around me and work out my path accordingly, so I celebrate the presence of many paths up the same mountain and have no concerns about reaching the top. I imagine that, like almost any walk in the fells, what currently looks like the top is just another place to see the next top from.

4 hours ago, Ellinas said:
14 hours ago, Moonsmith said:

My own beliefs have been evolving for decades.  I don’t suppose that they will change much more

Dangerous statement.  Talk about tempting fate...!

Definitely!! ūüėĀ

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 hours ago, Moonsmith said:

Hi, Welcome.

 

17 hours ago, Moonsmith said:

 Don’t take any notice of what other people say, just be sure that whatever you believe is what you really believe. 
 

There is no top to that mountain.  The road goes ever on. Take any path that leads in a direction that want to go.  Don’t worry about the destination.

Thank you.  Yes, I'm starting to think it's the journey that matters.

7 hours ago, Ellinas said:

Well, I've been called many things in my time...

I'm also a former Christian, with a chequered history (Anglican, in the guise of the Church in Wales, then Plymouth Brethren with the odd foray into the Baptists along the way).  I fell out with Christianity in the early 2000's, when I was late 30's, early 40's.

Since then, the general nature of my meanderings has remained fairly constant, but the details and contents have changed over time.  That's fine.  The journey is the issue, not the destination.  Ithaca calls, but Phoenician markets and Egyptian cities have the greater import (poetic reference - just means follow your path and hope to arrive late, if at all).  What I believe tomorrow may be very different to what I believe today.  What I believed yesterday is just a stepping stone.

Yes, I'm sure my beliefs will change plenty more times, just as yours have.

 

3 hours ago, Stonehugger said:

For me personally it's important to listen to what's going on around me and work out my path accordingly, so I celebrate the presence of many paths up the same mountain and have no concerns about reaching the top. I imagine that, like almost any walk in the fells, what currently looks like the top is just another place to see the next top from.

Definitely!! ūüėĀ

What a gorgeous image!  I'd love to get back to the fells, there's something new around very corner there.  

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

I have only ever been a Christian on paper lol. When visiting hospitals I would give the CofE answer when asked about my beliefs. I didn’t really even know what it meant.

As a child I often prayed to God. But could probably count on two hands the amount of times I have attended church. Obviously at school I sang hymns and recited the Lord’s Prayer. But I never went deep into it. My family is not religious. I have never been deeply influenced by Christianity.

I have always been spiritual though.

The weirdest thing is when I started on this journey it actually allowed me to gain deeper understanding of the Christ spirit. For many years I sought a shamanic technique¬†called the ‚Äúfierce eye‚Ä̬†technique. This technique as I believed at the time would allow me to command any spirit. I could banish them or destroy them at a glance.

My long search for this technique allowed me to find and connect with many interesting things but never allowed me to unravel the mysteries of the fierce eye technique.

One day I had vision. In the vision - between the two doors - I saw a man standing at the corner of a street near to where I live. It was daytime but there was nothing else around. Nothing moved. It was as if every living thing was asleep.

I approached the man who as I was drawing closer turned to regard my approach. What I saw blew my mind away.

The love I felt emanating from this strangers eyes was so powerful, so all consuming, utterly accepting that I fell to my knees and started weeping with happiness. The love was so unconditional, so total and all encompassing. It took my breath away.

I eventually awakened from this vision thinking what the hell was that all about? I did not realise until later that I had been shown the ‚Äúfierce eye‚ÄĚ technique.

I had been mistaken in my assumptions as to what the ‚Äúfierce eye‚Ä̬†technique was all about. It was not about destroying something,¬†Commanding something¬†or even banishing something. It‚Äôs power lies in acceptance. I later realised that the being I had seen in my vision was the Christ spirit. The Christ spirit is also a Great Fool.¬†

Who would have believed it, that I would find Christ following a pagan path lol. The irony was fitting. And made me realise just how limited I had allowed myself to be.

The few times I have gone to church recently since this experience (my son used to attend a CofE school) I feel very happy. Overjoyed even. A little mischievous. I know I am welcome there even though I do not take up the mantle of Christian. I feel at home, accepted, even though I am a pagan. I feel very welcome within the church.

Edited by Nettle
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

I have always had a problem with the dichotomy between the teachings of Christ - love, forgiveness, charity etc, and the practices of the Church. For this, and other more personal reasons I do not feel comfortable in church today, while still in agreement with the message of love and peace. So while I don't identify as a Christian, I can still accept Christ as a teacher - as I also would accept Buddha, or find myself in agreement with Hindu sages. Wisdom is not confined to any particular set of beliefs or culture. Like a dandelion in the cracks of the pavement, it will out and thrive despite all we do to try to control it. 

But to return to the OP. I was in my teens when I began questioning the Church, and 20 when I was first initiated into Paganism. That was nearly 40 years ago now, but I'm still learning and evolving. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Topics

  • Posts

    • Moonsmith
      I’ve posted a link (in links) to a BBC article in today’s news just to illustrate a bit of the colourful side of Paganism.  Perhaps it will do something to balance my prosaic take on the subject. i know little of Witchcraft but I enjoyed the article and like her approach.  
    • Ellinas
      ūüĎć It's as good a position as any and better than quite a few. ¬†
    • Stonehugger
      Yes, it was in Nettle's "Who are your deities?" thread. I said "I seem to have become an atheist. That was never my plan, but here I am." Veggiedancer later said it better than me - "I don’t exactly believe in deities as such. I think they come from  our minds. Archetypes, ways of identify or characterising the spirit/ magic/ life or whatever it is we sense around us. Ways our minds try to explain the unexplainable to us???"
    • Moonsmith
      I‚Äôm probably second guessing Nettle wrongly but it wasn‚Äôt all that long ago that¬†you would have read posts about alters, magic, Shamanism,¬†spells etc.¬†I think it was either Teatimetreat or Drachenfach that had a hex on her handbag and her car. ¬†When the car was stolen it crashed and the thief was caught. I agree and would very much like to see more of the colourful side of Paganism back here.¬† Quite right Ellinas. ¬†I do not understand how anyone can claim to be Pantheist (or even pantheist)¬†and atheist at the same time even though the most prominent Pantheists¬†do exactly that. ¬†As¬†I‚Äôve said elsewhere: why can‚Äôt they call themselves Panists. ¬†The prefix ‚Äúpan‚ÄĚ means everything and everywhere as in ‚Äúpandemic‚ÄĚ. ¬†The god‚Äôs name arose from the adjective so it wouldn‚Äôt necessarily mean a devotee of Pan. pee ess - it may be worth mentioning that there are a vast number of belief groups under the umbrella word Paganism. ¬†Druids Witches, Polytheist and Shaman are only a small part of what the greater picture of Paganism depicts. Dunno and don‚Äôt care are probably the biggest groups.
    • Ellinas
      All the above, plus the impression of a preponderance of atheism is currently, as well as historically, inaccurate.  Certainly, I am no atheist.  I believe MS rejects the term as applicable to himself.  Stonehugger, I think, recently said he had headed in that direction, but I've not seen the other resident atheists for a while. However, our ideas of deity are not the same, necessarily.
×
×
  • Create New...