Thursday, February 3, 2011

Defining My Craeft

Including my children and husband in my craeft is proving to be an incredible learning experience for me.  In exploring my thoughts on Imbolc and deciding how best to include my family, I have learned a lot about myself and my own beliefs.

One reality I have faced about myself recently is that no matter how hard I try, the truth is – I am just not a very “deity-oriented” witch.  My craeft is far less focused on worship and ritual than I have observed is the case for many of my pagan counterparts. My tradition seems to be more centered about Earth “honoring” as opposed to worship and more focused on communion with the Elementals rather than with specific deities.  I’m not saying that I don’t include any ritualistic practice or worship in my craeft; nor am I saying that I do not believe in or worship the Lord and Lady.  I am not even saying that either of these approaches are wrong, even for me – they just don’t come natural for me. 

Ritual Practice 
The fact is I have to work very, very hard to make a ritual happen. I am a great planner – I am just not a great doer.  By the time I finally get around to it, the spirit and intention behind the works have worn away rendering them, well, not very affective.  In general, my most spontaneous works tend to be my most powerful, which is why I include so little ritual in my craeft. 

Similarly, I struggle with the concept of worship - probably with much thanks to my early Christian background, worship in its most obvious form, has proven very uncomfortable for me.  I believe worship should be celebratory practice and come from a place of peace and love – but for me, the whole process is so uncomfortable that I can’t be at peace – and generally my mood is far from celebratory; so again, I have found ways to “worship” without traditional “worship.”  I focus my energy on honoring the deities through honoring the earth and all her inhabitants with love, patience, and seva (selfless work).

Defining Deity

Finally, I have always had a hard time with attaching myself to specific ideas of deity.  I don’t have an existing pantheon to which I am culturally bound or even most drawn to; and while I have always found the traditional stories about specific deities and the histories, rituals and particular strengths attributed to them, interesting –I just haven’t found one that feels relevant to my practice.  I can’t help feeling that by giving the divine a specific name, I am somehow limiting my understanding of the limitless.

If you think about it, naming is a very human obsession – we name people and things to define them in terms that we can understand. Naming something defines not only what it is, but what it isn’t.  When is the last time you looked at something without naming it?  Can you look at a rock without knowing it as a rock and see it for the infinite possibility of what it could be?  Naming it defines it and in a sense, limits its possibility.  It’s the same for the divine – no name I could give the Lord or Lady could come anywhere close to defining the All and Nothing that they really are.  No idea is grand enough.

Am I the only one?

I’ve done a lot of reading and listening online and it really seems that this is not an issue for most pagans out there.  Most witches I know are very comfortable with ritual, worship is a part of everyday life, and nearly all seem to have a specific pantheon of Gods and Goddesses with whom they can identify themselves with.  Am I the only one?

How do you all feel about ritual?  Is your practice planned and routine or do you take a more spontaneous path?

Do you formally worship the Lord and Lady?  If you do – how?  What works for you?

And finally – what Gods and Goddesses are you drawn to?  Do you include the Elementals in your craeft?

I’m really hoping to hear from you.

Blessings and Namaste,  



  1. A person's spirituality is as unique as the person who chooses it. I am a green witch myself and largely have an affinity with the earth, elementals, animals and all earth spirits as well. The green path is based on antiquity, a time before ruling classes existed and the largest focus for humanity was agriculture. The Lady(the earth)the Lord(sky) and The Divine are the diety in my ritual.

    I suggest you continue in what feels right for you and remain beautifully unique. And know that in time, just as all of Nature ebbs and flows, so will you.

  2. It's wonderful to hear from another green witch; and I hear what you are saying. I definitely have no intention of changing how I practice, but I LOVE hearing about how others do. What I love about the craeft is its diversity and individuality.

    Your comments are always so beautiful and inspiring. Thank you so much for reading and taking the time to reply. You are very appreciated. <3

  3. Merry Meet! I realize this was posted a few days ago, but I just found your blog. I had to respond ‘cause I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels like this about both Ritual and Deity!

    I, too, love to plan, but so often by the time I’m through planning and preparing I’m too exhausted to put the energy into Ritual that it deserves. So it often goes undone, and I find myself doing small, spontaneous acts instead.

    And as for Deity—I do worship the Goddess and the God, but I have neither desire nor pull to find a pantheon with which to work. They seem to be enough for me, at least right now. And how do I worship them? I light candles to each on my altar when I DO get around to Ritual, but mostly I think of them and take a moment to thank them when something in nature jumps out at me—a beautiful sunset or a simple leaf or the full moon or . . . you get the idea.

    I do feel a very strong pull to the Elements, and to various aspects of nature, and include both in just about everything Craeft-related I do.

  4. I know this was a few months ago, but I just found your blog and wanted to thank you for your post. I think I've been a closet witch for the last 15 years, but I've always hesitated precisely for those reasons of ritual and deity that you're discussing.

    Like you, I never felt drawn to a particular deity, and full-out ritual just never happens! I was worried that that meant I wasn't a "real" witch. Glad to hear there are others out there like me. :)

  5. Hey, I know this post is old but I stumbled upon it from reading an article of your's at This post made me feel really good, in that I'm pretty much the same way. My fiance & I are in our twenties & we have 2 kids, and decided that since we always leaned towards paganism spiritually that we wanted to raise our children in that spiritual type of environment. My fiance, she seems to be a lot more into the deities & ritual, but I've never felt drawn that way, as you said, I've always felt better to honor the gods rather than deify & worship them. It's nice to see there are others that feel the same.
    I don't really have a craft, I honor the gods by the way I live & respecting the Earth. Occasionally I might meditate on the gods, or play around on a musical instrument, thinking on the divine and letting that flow into music, or make some other art dedicated to the gods or elementals.
    Sorry to ramble, thanks for this post!