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The link you posted was actually one of the many things that have influenced me away from Christianity :) I find his story very compelling. I learned about Mithra in college as well. Never really thought about subbing words or names before at church but that would make it more bearable so thankies for the suggestion As far as an altar goes, I'll probably just have to wait until I move before setting anything up. I recently found out that my mom did go into my closet to find something. While I wasn't upset or confrontational about the issue, it did bother me that she would think it okay to do so.
Hi there! Since you have to do your worship/rituals "on the sly"; do you have a drawer in your room that will not be violated? If so, you can set up a little altar there. It needn't be obvious. An altar can also be on a shelf in the open with some shells to represent water, seasonal decor such as a cinnamon candle would be great for fire and readily available now. A wind chime or something with feathers can symbolize air and any potted plant, stone or even money can represent earth. You just have to be a bit more creative is all and that is a big part of paganism anyway.
My mother was evangelical Christian as well and I had to attend a Baptist school my entire educational career so I fully understand the paradox. It helped some for me to research Yahweh. Did you know he was originally a pagan war god similar to Mars or Aries? True! Explained a lot to me about his ruthlessness in the Old Testament stories. He also had a wife, Asherah,(I think that's the right name) whose image was kept in the temple until around 500BC. It was radical yahweh-ists who gained power and had the goddess images removed. Much of the OT scriptures were re-written about this time as well and included reworked Babylonian stories such as the creation and the great flood.
When I had to go to church and maintain a "proper" image, I just dedicated the songs we sang to Hecate in my heart. I might even slip in a "she" for "he" in the songs if I wasn't likely to get caught. If you happen to be doing communion that particular service, in your heart, dedicate it as you would a cakes and ale ceremony. A simple thought of 'may you never hunger; may you never thirst' and "to the gods" instead of Amen.
Even the decor of a cross is pagan if viewed correctly. It represents the 4 cardinal directions of the circle. And Jesus wasn't the only deity to be hung on the cross or stay dead for 3 days. Do some research on Mithra and Odin. There are many other sacrificial archetypes as well. I learned that simply tweaking my perception of the teachings helped a lot. In the end I was unable to tolerate the narrow-minded, judgmental attitudes and politics in the church, so I left.
I hope this gives you some ideas and perhaps places to start to be able to practice your faith as you wish.
This link was posted to YouTube by an athiest, but it does outline some of the information I mentioned that I think you might find interesting.
Thanks ya'll for the help. I wrote something special for the occasion...did some much needed cleaning...anointed my room...lit my candle...and read what I had written. I was very simple but I am so excited that I have finally celebrated my first Sabbat! I'm going to put what I wrote in my blog. Thank ya'll so much for the help :)
Sweet! Thankies! The church I grew up in that they are still a part of has never celebrated Candlemas and I'm sure they would think it evil as well. *sigh* I do love my parents very much though. I may have to get a tea light or something to burn tonight then so I don't burn the candle all night. I was thinking about the poem and came up with an idea to draw a large flame and write the poem around the flame. It has been a while since I've been artsy.
During the period of crossover from Paganism to Christianity, the Church named this day Candlemas, and some of us Pagans still celebrate it as such. Candlemas is something like Mardi Gras -- you get rid of the old fats, in this case by burning all your candles all night until they burn out or the Sun rises, thus proving you have brought the Sun back. The purpose of this ritual is that it is at Candlemas that the lengthening of the days becomes more evident.
Hope that helps.
I overcame my spiritual obesity, now for the physical!
Thankies...I've come across so many rituals online that are far more complicated and out in the open...even the simple ones. If I lived on my own these would be possible but since I live with the parents I have to be much more careful.
Good ideas! I have to do mine quietly too, not everyone in my family embraces it either. You have given me help so thank you!
Edited by: WOLFSPIRITMOM at: 2/3/2012 (08:35)
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Hi all :) I started studying paganism a few years ago and have gone back and forth between Paganism and Christianity...well I can't do the mental gymnastics of Christianity anymore....even if I could I do miss aspects of paganism such as esbats and sabbats. When the New Year arrived I thought how cool it would be to go through the year and celebrate the 8 sabbats...however...there is a slight maybe major issue.
Because of the current economy, I live with my parents who are evangelical, fundamentalist Christians. Anything remotely pagan is not allowed...ever. So anything that I do will have to be done on the sly. However, last night on a whim I decided to research the sabbats and find out when they where and to my joy Imbolc is today. Now I know from some previous readings that people usually do a house cleansing of some sort...since I can't smudge my room or anything I'd like to take the annointing oil that I have and annoint my room for starters after having given it a good cleaning...I'm talking dusting, vacuuming, doing my laundry, and cleaning the bathroom as well. For my ritual, I am thinking of something simple as all I have to my disposal is a lavendar candle, Goddess tarot on my phone, and maybe I'll write a poem or song to honor the goddess Brighid (did I spell it right?). After the cleaning, annointing, and poem/song writing, I will light my candle and take a few moments to celebrate this day. Based on this information that I've given...is that appropriate?
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