Turning the Magic Off

Now, I recognize that many people live their religions in all aspects of their lives, so it is rather difficult to separate the mundane from the pagan, I suppose. But I want to ask this, and I aggressively invite any and all readers to comment and share their stories.

What do you do when you’re not doing magic or otherwise “paganing it up”?

Allow me to explain this a little better. I go to some local pagan events. Discussion groups mostly. Some festivals. Group ritual not so much anymore. And I do my own devotional and magical work, and my own studies.

But there are other parts of my life. I work, I interact with family, I see movies. And my religion is not explicit in such things, but it has some of an influence. So when you are not devoted to your religion or your magic, what do you do?

Writing is one of my favorite things to do. I really like writing about magic and paganism, which is why I have this blog. I’ve been away from writing for a long time, and I’m trying to get back into it, and possibly write as a job or career. So much of my free time now is spent writing, and I enjoy that.

I read as much as I can. I read blogs on religion and politics. I read books on history, religion, politics, and science. I read science fiction and play video games. I play table-top RPGs. All of these things influence and are influenced by my religion.

I work in food service. I like to cook, and I like to talk about food. I brew my own wine and beer as well.

Outside of an excuse to talk about myself, where am I going with this?

I’m Italian. I worship the Roman gods. So food and hospitality are important. For the majority of my life, I have earned money by preparing and serving food for other people. This is something that I enjoy, to the point that even if I achieve my goal of being a professional writer, I will still most likely work in some capacity preparing food for other people. (I’ve got a great idea for a restaurant, and a winery. I’m not telling — you’ll steal it.) I come from a hospitality culture, and have always seen inviting people over for food as a moral obligation. My gods encourage this idea. So serving food is an expression of a religious ideal, and by working in a restaurant I fulfill that ideal.

See what I did there?

I’m a story-teller. I love telling stories, especially real ones. (I guess there’s some bard in me after all.) And I gladly make stories up to illustrate points (Not everything written in this blog is true). So I write to tell my stories. I play games to experience other people’s stories. This makes some of my gods happy. I also like to figure out how things work, and explain this to others who don’t know yet. I’m a teacher. So I explain things, and I teach. This makes some more of my gods happy.

Sure, it’s cliche by this point to say that you recycle as a way to honor the Earth Mother. But your religion (or even lack thereof) most likely influences what kinds of things you do in your “normal life.” And that is important, because our spirituality doesn’t exist in a vacuum. How we live our lives is an expression, at least to some degree, of that spirituality, or what is most important to us.

I write because when I’m not writing, I wish I was. It’s who I am. I cook because giving food to others is an expression of love and kindness. That’s who I am. That’s how I honor the gods. (Well, that and wine and incense and coffee.)

Who are you?

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2 responses to “Turning the Magic Off

  1. Pingback: Magical Tools and Mundane Skills | Blacklight Metaphysics

  2. I do not separate my spiritual self from my mundane self or activities- magic is part of who and what I am. Sometimes the magical elements of the world come to the forefront, sometimes they fade back, but like the rhythm in a song, or a heartbeat, they are always present.

    My style of practice is very individual and 21st century. I do not cleave to a pantheon or tradition, but employ what I call a catch-and-release style of divine invocation and interaction. The myriad Small Gods I interact with appreciate this energy exchange, and have enabled me to work with and for them in many ways. At work, there are the technical gods. At home, the domestic ones. Out shopping, there are the ones who show me sales, parking places, and give me ideas. There are city gods, building gods, even individual vehicle gods, all addressable and accessible with the right mindset. Everything and everyone has a kernel of divinity within it. I have so integrated myself with that layer of reality that no formal invocation, ritual, etc- is needed to interact with it any more. It is a seamless segueway into and out of the pocket multiverses I work with.

    Because of this, there really isn’t a separation of my spiritual life with my mundane life. They are tightly interwoven, inseparable, and integrated. The changing point is my level and intensity of the attention paid to them- but they are present, even when I am not actively pinging them.

    I use words, and eventually also will use music to bring more magical awareness into the world. It does not have to be overt- and in fact, for me, it ‘s better when it is not, considering the hostile-to-magic and ‘alien’ religion uber-Xian part of the world I inhabit. But I am here because this is where I am needed, and although I may be isolated from the greater human community of magical people, the Small Gods here appreciate anyone who recognizes them and addresses them.

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