Dealing Criticisms, military, and family

In my experience, being Pagan in the military is not a big deal at all. “Oh you’re Pagan, that’s cool.” All people care about is that you show up where you’re suppose to be at the right time. That’s it. Sometime people can not understand it and have some disgusts about it. Some might think it’s odd, and it’s harmless. That’s to be expected. For the most part, it’s “Cool you’re Pagan, get to work”.

Now, what about telling your friends and family? That can be hard. I came out to my friends and family about being Pagan and I got mixed reviews. Some were supportive and some were basically saying I needed to find Jesus. All I have to say is keep your cool and be gentleman/gentle lady about it. Have a good conversation. You can still love everyone and have different views. No need to fight or get angry. You’re in the military after all, criticism is a daily thing. Use your discipline and keep your straight.

 

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Pagan Spirituality and the Military.

The military life can be a busy life. You have 24 hour duties, deployments, field exercises, and other demands to meet for your unit. Sometimes it becomes hard to find time to do things like conduct rituals and to part take in Pagan events/holidays. Right now, I am going through the same thing. However, I have always made time to practice my spirituality. Here, I will provide tips on to how to manage it.

Divination

I do Tarot or Rune readings in the morning or in the evening to be aware of possible things to come. It helps me be focused and approach the day with some expectancy.

Prayer

I pray daily to my deities to guide me and to empower me and simply thank them for the things I already have. I have seen some prayer cards on etsy that are Pagan based that can be easily stowed in your assault pack or your ruck sack. Or better yet write down your prayers to say when you’re about to out to the field or deployment.

Nature Days

If you have a bit of free time or on your time off, go take walks to the park or nature trail. The tranquility of nature helps you feel so refreshed. What about a combat deployment environment? Well, if you go outside within the limits of your AO, you still admire what you can see of nature even though you cannot trek outside the AO to enjoy it. You can admire it from afar. Like mountains, the land, the sunsets, and sun rises. There is beauty everywhere, you just need to know where to find it and learn to enjoy it.

The Green Notebook

If you go to your supply person and ask them for a notebook you can use it to write down your spiritual journey and your prayers. Hell, get two different notebooks, one for work and one for you. Writing your thoughts, prayers, feels, and spirituality is one of the best things to do in a busy constrained life.

Spells

The main focus of spells is intent. Sometimes your can’t bring all that fancy stuff with you out to the field or deployment. In those scenarios, you need to stick to the simplicity, and go with paper and pen. You can write your spells or write sigils. Less is more, sometimes.

Barracks Pagan Pro-Tip: Burning Things

ARE YOU IN THE MILITARY AND PAGAN?

DO YOU LIVE IN THE BARRACKS?

DOES YOUR BARRACKS POLICY HAVE ISSUES WITH YOU BURNING INCENSE/CANDLES/ETC?

DO YOU LIKE CONDUCTING SOLITARY RITUALS THAT INVOLVES BURNING THINGS?

DO YOU DISLIKE GOING OVER TO YOUR BATTLE BUDDY’S HOUSE TO DO THESE THINGS?

WELL, DO I HAVE SOME SOLUTIONS FOR YOU!

WHEN YOU ARE WORKING WITH FIRE AND SETTING THINGS ON FIRE, BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS, USE BASIC FIRE SAFETY. IF YOU ARE TO GET INJURED BY FIRE, PLEASE GET IN CONTACT WITH YOUR PHYSICIAN. BE SURE YOU HAVE SOMETHING TO EXTINGUISH FIRE IF THE FLAMES SPREAD AND/OR GET OUT OF CONTROL.

For incense, I heard of people burning it their rooms, and it never set of the alarm. I am not encouraging that. But you can still use incense in your practice so you can meditate, conduct spell work, and rituals. You can literally get it in EVERY SCENT!

Now, if you are the kind of person who likes to crush their incense with mortar and pestle and then burn it. NO PROBLEM! Buy yourself a cauldron. If it sounds expensive. I can tell you now, NOT REALLY.  You can go to your local Walmart or camp store and get a cast iron pot that is used in camping. Or, for Walmart go to the kitchen section and get an all cast iron dutch oven. These are really cheap for the size. However, you will need to burn it outside.

ironpot

 

For those of you that use candles in your rituals and spells, I would recommend getting small ritual colored candles(as image shows above) or tea light candles. They do not take forever to burn and still do the trick. I know some paths have specific colors that are known as the base color. Most practitioners go with white as a base color but some may go with black. It depends on which path you follow in your spiritual practice. I personally have tea lights because they are cheap and inexpensive, but ritual candles are great for symbolic purposes. I would not recommend getting really long and thick candles. Those tend to take a while, but if you have the time for it, go for it. Small candles are great for a quick little ritual or spell cast. I have heard of people burning candles in their room with the window open. I would not recommend it because you could potentially burn the window screen. My fire alarm is really sensitive so I could easily set off the alarm.

grill

If you do not have a cauldron or any kind of cast iron pot for burning outside, go to your park and use one of the grills(as shown above). They are great and convenient, but the grill may be a little gross. However, it is great for setting candles and incense.

Now, lets say it’s a bit windy outside and you can’t really light your candles or you can’t keep your candles lit….

latern

You can use a lantern for those windy days. You can get it in any size and your can light your candle with ease. They are not terribly expensive either. The downside is they can be broken due to their fragility.

I hope this was all helpful. So if there is anything you would like to add, drop me a line.

 

Druids: Can any Druids hit me up??

I go off of Norse Paganism and Chamorro Ancestor Worship/animism, however, I have books for just about every single path so I can give it to others and help guide them on their growth. Also, I like seeing all the similarities and connections that each aspects of the different paths with other paths.

I have recently purchased books on Druidry. I have a friend of mine who walks the Druid/Celtic Paganism in my unit who needed a little more guidance. I have been reading and recommending books to said person. I only know small fractions about Druidry, when I find I have limited knowledge on something. I read about it.

The current book on Druidry that I am currently reading is:

“The Druid Magic Handbook” By John Michael Greer. So far it is a very excellent read. One of my main favorite parts of the book I am enjoying he makes connections with other cultures on the concept of the spirit. He especially makes connections with Eastern Traditions(Shinto, Taoism, etc). It made me feel good that I am not the only person who the connection between Eastern Pagan religions with Druidry.

Something I find fascinating about Druidry, they have a little more science;yes, every path has it, but I find it more predominate in the Druid practice.

I am wondering if there are any Druids on here I can speak to because I would like to have conversation with a Druid to see your beliefs and philosophies.

druid

Fae/Magical Small People

Hello all, just been on vacation. Enjoying time with family. I also, have been enjoying lots of spiritual study(when I should be studying for other areas).  I have wondered:

1.Are the Fae/Magical Small People are real?

2.These folk are just unique to Celtic Myth(I know this sounds silly)?

Well, I have watched documentaries and read other cultural myths and legends.

Norse had disir and a variety of elves that could constitute as Fae.

Vietnamese had Tien were heavenly beings such as fae, angels, spirits, etc

Iroquis(Native American tribe if you’re not familiar) were said to be small spirit folk

Chamorro had duendes that were mischievous small people pranking adults and sometimes stole children

Chinese had Mogwai were faeries that had powers and inflicted pain on humans

Mayan/Aztec(?) had Chaneques that had spirits that dwelled in rugged mountains, forests, caves etc.

Now to answer, are they real? I can’t convince you whether or not to believe. I never will. Do I believe in them? I don’t know. Truth is, I don’t rule it out, it could be possible. I haven’t experienced and based upon myths and legends, you may not want to due to the outcome. If I do happen to encounter one or more, I will make sure to mind my manners.

Ancestor Worship

I never really talked about this because I haven’t felt too established in this area of my beliefs.  However, I have learned in this practice you are always learning. You are never going to be completely established.

I have gotten into ancestor worship because my Chamorro side seems to be practicing it(despite their firm Catholic belief). The Vikings/Nordic people also had elements of ancestor worship. I should really say every culture has had an element of ancestor worship because that elder that has passed, has influenced you and inspired you. There are positive qualities from them you should try to live by.

Despite my gram passing 8 years ago, I still feel her presence and her watching over me. Actually, anyone I know that is deceased that had an impact on me, I feel their presence and spirit watching over me. It is such a beautiful thing. I just feel like that person should always be remembered and honored.

To me, this is what ancestor worship is. It is rememberance, honor, and admiring your deceased loved one. Also, remember their life lessons and wondering if they think about you. I belief in spirits; I believe their spirits watch over you.

I know these thoughts are all over the place, but I wanted to just blog. I also wanted to know if there are any other folks here that have ancestor worship as part of their path.

Altar In the Works

I have two altars I am trying to put together because I know I mentioned I would make a post about it.

Altar 1: Will be my barracks room altar. It will be a mix of my Norse Deities and ancestor worship.

Altar 2: Will be more travel sized. Mostly the deity altar.

I haven’t been able to put these two things together because of the busy military life and getting life sorted. I am also going to be going on vacation to go see my dad and family. Despite vacation, I will make time to blog.