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Practices

Patron Deities

“How do I find my patron deity?” is a question that echoes throughout the pagan communities on Tumblr and elsewhere.  What doesn’t seem to get discussed very often is what having a patron deity entails.  It’ll be different with every deity and devotee, of course, depending on the deity’s personality and the nature of the original culture in question.  The dynamics of a patronship with a Kemetic god versus an Irish god versus a Hellenic god are not the same; this previous post demonstrates a bit of that.  And that’s just three people in a community of thousands!

Just to be clear, I’m speaking as an Irish polytheist and someone with a strong sensitivity to power dynamics, so much of what I’ve said is influenced by those things.  I’m coming from a specific tradition with a specific background.  Others will have different opinions and experiences, as evidenced by that first link above.  Don’t take my words as fact, only as one person’s opinion.

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Right Worship

For one of my undergrad philosophy classes, I wrote an essay explaining why God’s alleged omnipotence and omniscience didn’t necessitate human obeisance. I don’t remember what class it was for specifically or what I grade I got on it, only the righteous indignation as I sat muttering into my fifth cup of coffee in one of the campus dining halls. Adoration, unquestioning faith, and blind obedience: this kind of absolute surrender to a deity seems to be the most common understanding of what worship actually entails. I know people who have been drawn towards one Pagan path or another but who find the idea of developing a relationship with a deity utterly repelling because of this misunderstanding of what worship should entail.

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