Friday, 29th March 2019
Reading Tess Dawson’s marvellous post on daily prayer inspired me to sit down and make my own offerings.
Both actual offerings to my shrines, and my literary devotional offering here – as a blog post on daily devotions.
This has been on my mind since my weekend away at the Labyrinth Gathering, and again this morning, when I was asked about my devotional practice (at the pool, no less! You know who you are *grin*).
I will qualify my terms here.
Devotions to me are prayers, meditation, contemplation, physical or mental or spiritual acts carried out to honour Deity or Deities or other Mysterious Ones. They can include offerings – things like writing this blog post, or writing a prayer, writing music, creating art, cooking, dancing, or actual offerings made at shrines or other spaces.
Those kind of offerings I will leave to discuss in another post, this post is about Daily Devotional practice.
A word on Shrines vs Altars: Altars are something that I construct for specific ritual – to me, Shrines are basically my permanent devotional spaces.
Mileage may vary a little with the two terms.
My Personal Daily Devotional Practice
I have many forms of Daily Devotional practice – the simplest being the lighting of incense inside the house and outside on the porch.
That is something I can do as part of my morning routine in getting ready for a 12 hour shift, and again when I come home.
Whilst driving, I will try to pause in traffic and honour Hermes: beautiful prayer here from Setjataset.
I have some prayers that I offer daily as well – usually, again, the simple forms.
On days off, my devotional activities tend to get a bit more elaborate.
I do a lot of light meditation when I am swimming, or in the spa and the sauna. This will often be a constant, free form acknowledgement of specific Deities and Spirits. I am currently not ready to speak of these relationships and meditations in detail publicly.
Some of my practice, and my daily devotions, do involve what I consider being under a geas or geasea at various times – thing/s I do or do not do, again, as part of my devotions.
Some other examples I am comfortable sharing.
I will tend my shrines: making offerings of prayer, incense, fresh water, coffee, perfume, food.
My actual paid professional work is an act of devotion to a particular Deity.
Some of my tattoos are devotional in their nature and the inspiration behind them.
When I first started getting really serious about my devotional practice, I worked a lot with Ceisiwr Serith’s Book Of Pagan Prayer – and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
Great post involving contemplative prayer HERE; by Yvonne Aburrow.
I have included links below to the work and blog posts of a few different practitioners that I respect who have written well considered pieces around this.
Being a devotional practitioner is now part of how I see myself; but another starting point is with daily practice as outlined in the link to the wonderful KnotMagic blog below.
As always, if there are other blogs posts, including your own, that address this topic, feel free to post a link in the comments! 🙂
If you aren’t familiar with Tess Dawson‘s work, be sure to follow her on:
A Canaanite Polytheistic Religion
Although our paths are not the same, I am a *huge* fan.
Make sure you read her Intended Audience page: it is probably the best I have seen.
Galina is another devotional practitioner who is fierce and unflinching in her practice. Again, although our practices differ, I have learnt so much through following her work.
- Deep in Devotion While Being Disabled
- How to Set Up a Shrine
- On Being and Becoming in Devotion
- Joy and Devotion
- Loving the Gods When We Really Don’t Want To
- Realistically, Galina has a LOT of material pertaining to devotional practice on her blog, and I really recommend having a good read to inform your own devotional practice.
Virginia Carper: Neptune’s Dolphins
Another related post is Showing Respect for the Gods on Virginia Carper’s blog; Neptune’s Dolphins.
Virginia is a Roman Polytheist, and her blog is a constant source of reflection for me.
She also addresses the fact that Roman Gods are Not Greek Gods in a blog, which resonates with me as an eclectic polytheist who seems to have built relationship with a number of Greek Deities.
But! I digress!
Another valid point that Virginia makes is that Deities can and do say no.
Virginia also wrote a wonderful piece explaining her devotional schedule called Daily Devotions.
Over the last few years I have gone from being devoted to one particular deity to coming into relationship with a number of others, so I may have to consider a schedule myself!
John’s blog is another I have enjoyed reading for a long time. Again, we don’t have a shared practice, but his blogs consistently make me a more mindful practitioner.