Thanking my Lady (along with the Morrigan on the left) after my living abroad and being back to my country.
Here we are.
I couldn’t feel, I couldn’t practice, I was in doubt, maybe even shameful. I thought I was unable and unworthy of this so powerful Goddess, Morrigan. But after the trial, she showed me that she can have great patience and indulgence. She reassured me, showed me she trusts me. It’s a huge gift, it’s even more humbling than anything. It took me many signs to see, many crow messengers, sharing experience with other people, even, an oracle from Dionysos, but now I see very clearly. And I do not only see ; I took the part of action and experienced, faced her.
During a rather short ritual, a Full Moon ritual, I chose to express and show that I had acknowledge her message. And in order to be able to go on down the road to her, I wanted to purify myself. So did I, physically and spiritually… But then came the vision, the unexpected event, little event, but which has a depth I can’t share through words. I went through the first step of my initiation I guess. I learned many things, crucial “tools” to be her servant and work with her. She purified me herself, and tested me. So that I can learn to trust her blindfully, saving me from death ; plus I learned to handle my fear. It must not be rejected or suppressed. It must be there, integrated in your being, being one with yourself. And so did I, ‘accidentally’. It’s a weird state because on the one hand you can still feel you fear (but muffled), and on the other hand it creates peace and energy (ecstasy?) which drives you forward. It’s the strength of the Warrior. Maybe now I’m a Warrior of the Great Queen. I can feel it… I feel so humble she taught me those things, and affirmed to me that I’m worthy, that she trusts me.
The details can be seen on the Temple’s page.
The sudden arrival of a new God in our practises is always stunning. But what I like best is that I’m so new to polytheism (2 years) that when a God I only approached through researchs come to me in reality, I feel like I’ve discovered something totally new. And that’s awesome.
I learnt quite a bit about Belenos when I applied for a gaulish polytheist course. I was our first encounter, and I enjoyed going through this new panel of Gods, Gods of my home (France) and not from somewhere else. And indeed their energy can be felt everywhere here, easier than other Gods. So as I read about Belenos, and learnt by heart, I also felt things. And I also prayed for him, several times, honoured him for his own festival (Beltain), and for two others two (during summer). But all this remained distant even if that was pretty good. I realised it when I met Morrigan, and saw the intensity of the bond we can have to Gods, and also when Dionysos entered my life in August 2010 (thanks to Sannion). I then realised that I may have passed some kind of new “level”. I developped the necessary sensitive faculties to be able to really feel the Gods presence and messages. So what I did in the past year before that evolution, that was marked by intellectual work, or at least isolated devotion. Because I loved and worshiped the Gods, but I could not truly feel them and hear them.
And Belenos chose this moment to show up, and I don’t know why… Because he was really innocent/naive in his approach, just like a child (the Immortal Young God that He is). It was in the middle of October, when the weather gets wetter and wetter (is it the correct form?), but we had some nice afternoon when the sun shines in the sky and warmth both the body and spirit. And Belenos came to me through a huge cloud : the sun made a fierce breakthrough in the sky, and through my window, suddenly warming up my cold body. So I lifted up my eyes, and thought… Morrigan ? was she answering my calls ? But no, it was different. And all so suddenly, I understood that it was male energy… and I heard the God’s cry of joys in my head. “Belenos”. That was really a marvellous moment that I cannot describe. But He was there, both in front of me (Sun) and in me (the warmth, his voice and laughter). And since that particular moment, he has made himself a place in my heart, and I did not left me. The Joy, Light and Warmth I can feel, they’re often (if not always) associated with Him. These energies that I had in me for a long time, now I understand they’re linked to him. And even if it’s teh cold period, and the dark period of the Year, He is definitely there, outside and in me.
And if I doubted it, the week after our encounter, he sent me messages to proove to me it was Him. He lent me his huge positive energy. He kind of let me know that he could also help i nthe underworld, even if he is God of the upper sphere (the eagle that went to me maybe his). He answered to my call full of doubt one night : in my sleep he went, and he blessed me and my partner, showing me his powers (positiveness, joy, warmth, true inconditional love…). It was absolutely amazing because it was so intense, but also so direct and clear. I was glad to know him for real this time. He revealed to me his Face, his Smile, his Powers that I had been only able to read and not feel. I was able to make his portrait for others, as the Ever Young God, Ever Cheerful, the Beauty Incarnate, the Absolute Lover, … Marvellous.
And what stroke me with a strong troubling force was this : I felt he was grateful, to me. How could that be ? He seems to be the kind of God who is very close to his worshipers, and intensely grateful for their devotion, being always ready and eager to help (and damn’ he’s strong!). It was almost as if he had told me that I was the tool of his new (re) awakening to the World, because my faith was strong and pure. He told me that he had felt abandonned and sleepy, that I had awakened him. That for this he was for ever grateful, and now ready to shine for the World, smiling, laughing, waiting to give his help and support.
I wish there were here some people who can read french, at least a little.
I present here to you a personal project which did not came from my mind, but directly from Morrigan Herself. One night as I was surfing on the Internet, She “rode” me as I think one says : She possessed my spirit/mind and made me create this Sanctuary which was to be a public place of devotion. It is more complicated, because it’s also a personal thing : this is Mabon and I chose to engage deeply to Her as She asked me one year ago (see the article “Inside the Cave”), so this Sanctuary is also planned to host my personal experiences as Morrigan’s follower, my studies, … and so on. But I/She wanted it to be public : to people to get to know her, but also a place to collect information, to share studies, articles, ressources, devotions, … So people are encouraged to send their personal testimonies, articles, drawings, poems, links, …
This is huge for me, this marks a very important and deep step in my spirituality. I wish I could share it with you.
My encounter with Morrigan was one of the most stunning and disturbing experiences I ever had. And I finally managed to translate this huge piece !
At the Fall Equinox (Mabon) 2009 I went far away from y home in France to meet pagan friends and practice together. It was my first group ritual by the way. The story is VERY long. In the night we performed to guided meditation which tends to be chamanic travels (but I don’t know yet what we did exactly). The second was on a theme to fit the part of the year, the “dark” one, and we were supposed to go down in a cave and meet a Goddess and our other (dark) self.
The circumstances : Night in a public garden (park? square?). Huge cloth on the ground with all sorts of stones, candles, incense… Each one have an obsidienne stone to guide us. Two people are guiding with a tibetan bowl and a drum. I prefer to travel on y back, I keep the stone in my hands (on my belly as I remember).
What happened : A round door appears on the soil before us and Louve (the drummer feminine guide) opens the way, beginning the descent through the hole. In turn I step into it, and I see a spiral staircaise, with a very raw/rough earthy wall. I put my hand on it to go down more easily, and it beats like a pulse, like a heart other from mine – that of the Earth itself ? The descent is long and uneasy, but I see the person who came before me. Once downstairs, we come upon a great cave (cavern), with a mirror like lake in the middle. It’s very impressive because of the complete quietness, the emptyness and the silence that dwell. We come closer, we get into line and sit down. “Louve” asks us to close our eyes and to empty our minds, then to look into the water once it’s done. It happens very suddenly. The other have disappeared, I am alone on the edge, and I look at my reflection on the smooth surface, barely disturbed by my breath. All of a sudden it changes form : my reflection turns into brown-haired man ! I can’t recognised him, I think I don’t even know him. It’s weird because I can’t “freeze” the moving features, it’s too elusive, too quick. but “Louve” reassures us, tell us that is it all about seeing one’s Other Self. And so is my reflection, which from man turned into my own again. I look much closer, to try to go again, but then I transforms again, becoming a black shape, then figure : I identify as “Darth Vador”, with the little humor I’ve got left in this awe-inspiring situation. Once again, the features are very blurred…. I concentrate a lot, and I can only see a completely black figure with a black cloak which hides every possible body part and especially the face – like the traditional Reaper. I think She talks to me, but I can hear nothing but silence, I cannot distinguish her words, or I cannot understand. Am I afraid ? Deep in my soul I’m disturbed… At first that Man and now this black Figure. Everything happens very fast, everything is blurred, and I can’t hear ! I try to relax, to calm down, to tell myself that even if I can’t see my fellows there are here as well. So I look at the figure, the reflection, and I ask for her help. But once again, I can’t hear anything : no face then no lips moving, no sounds or vibrations, only silence and eerie quietness. Maybe it’s normal, maybe I’m not ready to listen, maybe I have to wait. Then I hear “Louve” telling us that time has come : we must stand up and cross the lake. I’m able to see the girls again, but only for a short while as I come closer to the edge again. I conjure up a small wooden boat (bark) with paddles : I embark carefully and I begin the crossing. It’s seems easy, I move forward with ease. The water it’s totally impressive, being from the most deep black I’ve ever seen, completely opaque, but really flowing/fluent, like any other water I’ve seen. We are supposed to see things during the crossing, maybe visions, beings, everything is possible. But I, I can’t see anything, on the contrary, the void is hard to bear. I feel terribly alone, the other are still invisible. And yet I have the feeling that there is something alive all around… – or maybe it’s the Cave itself which is alive ? or the lake ? Suddenly something happens : I can see waves on the surface. No ripples, but something that is above the surface, which “flies”… I can hear them, I hear sounds, voices, murmurings… I believe there is something below the surface, so I don’t paddle any longer, I simply observe. I’m around the middle of the lake, but there is nothing. Nothing more happens. I see nothing above as below, and I’m unable to distinguish precisely the voices or the words they say. I want to move again, to finish the crossing, but I now can’t manage to : the paddling don’t make the boat progress, I even have the impression that the other side’s edge is getting far : I’m stuck. I hear “Louve” saying that now we must be at the end of the journey, on the shore, and that we are going to meet a Goddess (depending on each one), that we should already be seen her, and also a cauldron… I can’t ! I can’t ! I’m freaking out : I’m on the water and so far away from the shore ! I cannot move forwards or even backwards. I try to go on sides, to do “bord à bord” (navigation technique when you’re against the wind), but it’s useless as well, my boat seems to move but I’m always at the same distance. I tell myself then that maybe I should swim, so I go off the boat without knocking it over and I try to swin forwards. But the water is icy cold, penetrating, and it is “inhibiting” (moving uneasy), I’m not at ease – and I also have the weird feeling that the lake has no bottom and can swallow me. I still hear the voices which, now that I’m in the water, are very close to me, all around, and I get the feeling there’s something under me. I think I’m scrared… my arms’ movements are totally vain, I don’t move any closer to the shore. So I come back to the boat and I get inside with much effort, and I try to paddle intensely… My eyes staring at the shore, I then see a cauldron waiting for me. This is the right step, I have to go there. Then I suddenly notice, just behind the cauldron, the black shape which looks like a reaper looking with insistance in my direction (even if she has no face). I know this is very important, and I think there is a deep meaning in all this, but I cannot understand. I’m crying. Am I talking to her ? Am I asking for help ? Maybe in my head… Staring is not helping, and there is still this profound silence, my total incomprehension, the inaccessible shore. I cannot do it, I know it, I feel it. I’m crying. So I turn back, making the boat turn round to cross towards the entrance. It is so frightening since this backward-crossing is all so hard ! I have the impression that the water is more dense : I have to paddle twice more to progress at a normal speed. And the shore sometimes seems to be very far, sometimes it even draws back. I can feel that some of the fellow girls are already upstairs, “Louve” is waiting for us all to come up again. All of a sudden, the boat disappears and I see myself on the other (beginning) shore, on the edge. So I come the stairs and go. Something has changed : the stairs are harder to climb and less reassuring than for the descent (with the warmth and pulse), and it seems so high ! I have the sensation that I will not be able to come out… And I have this burden on my shoulders, or behind me. The end of the tunnel is rendered surreal/unreal by the efforts it has cost to reach it. It’s very hard for me to close the round door, it’s so heavy and uneasy to handle. It’s even darker than when we depart. I feel like the cave deep under me feet is full of… things. All those things that I didn’t understand, and many that I didn’t see. Maybe the door is no sufficient to put them at distance. I go back to my place in the circle, to my body, but I need A LOT of time to calm down… I’m totally disturbed and I think tears pours on my cheeks.
As I wake up I shiver with cold, and I’m on the verge of tears because of the traumatising experience. I think I’m the last one to come back (except for another). We talk about what we saw, but shyly, my mouth is tight closed as the vision inhabits me (and I am in a deep transe). It’s to damp to stay and we made offerings and come back home.
It’s only months after that I understand what happened. First, my Other Self is really disturbed and I cannot access it. That’s why it has so many forms. Both the man, my normal reflection and the dark shape. Second, in fact Morrigan is an absolut shifter, without a proper face, always wearing masks. She got me there because She took the form of my Dark Side, and then revealed Herself but I couldn’t make the difference.
The thing with mysteries is that you can’t predict them, you can’t force it, it’s not a procedure where if you do W, X and Y Z will necessarily happen. There are things we can do to help set the stage, but in the end it’s really up to the gods and whether they are willing to grant a particular revelation. One of the things that I consider absolutely essential is having a strong, personal relationship with a deity beforehand, based on lots of previous ritual work with them. Before you can become an initiate you’ve got to be a devotee, and a particularly dedicated one at that. Only once you’ve lived with the god for a while, been able to listen and speak with them on their own, will you be in a position to ask for that sort of revelation.
At least that’s my thought on the subject. But since it’s entirely up to the gods they can always just spring something like that on a person without any sort of warning. That way brings it’s own problems, however, as the person is rarely prepared to deal with the aftermath.
Once again, Sannion’s words triggered off my mind and I finally understood where I’m heading. I wanted to follow the mysteries of a few of my Gods, and only one (Morrigan) to begin with, but I couldn’t link my different thoughts. Now I understand. Despite one year of awareness, it’s not sufficient because I went through Hell in my personal life, I need more work, more connexion. So this step that I identified months ago without knowing precisely “what” it was, is now clear : it will be the “anniversary” date, one year till I met Morrigan at Mabon (Sep 21)… And I’m not going to engage into an initiation, a mystery like I thought, no, first I’m going to officialise my devotee position and my will to go further, to mark that I’m her sincere follower. She’ll do of me what She desires, now I’m ready, I’m willing. And I’m really excited about what is to come ! – With much awe of course.