TOO MUCH TO DO: The saga of an overworked polytheist

I had meant to do my “Why Freya makes me cry” post, but this is what came out instead (though they are not entirely mutually exclusive). I’m just one among many overworked people, I know. I’ll keep my bitching to a minimum.

Currently, my responsibilities, both real and perceived, are as follows (not necessarily in order of importance):

  1. Do Freya stuff. Subcategories: blog about Her. Blog about Heathen/interfaith topics associated with Her. Continue to collect resources about Her. Touch base with Her daily and post Her Love Notes. Journey to Her, ideally 2x a month. Continue to research Her, both on an academic level and on a UPG level. Continue to practice trancing Her. Do misc. priestessing on Her behalf, as necessary.
  2. Help run the VC (a group dedicated to the Vanir, which I helped found lo! those many years ago). Subcategories: organize and run of 2-3 events a year, including publicizing events and bring in newbies. Shake hands/kiss babies. Get trained up in the various Vanatru practices that EmberVoices puts together.
  3. Help run SB Heathens (Norse focused group). Subcategories: plan, publicize, and run 1-3 events a year; contact newbies. (Not as much of the shaking hands/kissing babies involved here, thank Gods.)
  4. PantheaCon 2015. Subcategories: Plan “Facets of Freya” rit/panel for PCon 2015 (Contact all of the Freya-type people I know; nail a few of the interested parties down to a commitment (heh, nailing!); help them all get along and communicate clearly; put together a blurb to submit; research, write, and practice to actually make it happen). Decide if and how the Love Notes should happen and mobilize people for it. Decide if and how a Freya Blot will happen. Help plan and run a Hellenic ritual, topic TBD. Finish period Viking outfit. Deal with various and sundry other things that will pop up between now and then. Also, start to worry about the nebulous “connections” and “messages” that Zeus wants me to handle for him at the Con.
  5. Do other Zeus stuff. Subcategories: Check in with Zeus 1x a month; pass on various messages to people in our Greek group. Help publicize Greek events. Do a lot of hand shaking/baby kissing; search out and chat up possible new Hellenes. Help plan, publicize, and run the Symposium in Sept.. Research and memorize a good, easy to remember yet powerful invocation for Zeus. Continue my Ancient Greek academic research. Start planning Poseidon campout and ritual. Did I mention doing a bunch of meet ‘n greet work with possible Hellenes? I don’t think I mentioned that one enough. Attend any new, Hellenic-focused events I come across. Shake hands, kiss babies.
  6. Blogs. Subcategories: Keep up with Heathen blogs. Keep up with Hellenic blogs. Keep up with various polytheist blogs. Seek out new ones to read.
  7. Odin stuff. Subcategories: Avoid talking shit about Odin. Review runes. Plot up rune reviewing plan, likely a year in length. Contact  man formerly known as Hobbit to continue Freya/Odin info swap. Continue to discuss runes with the bevy of Odinpeople I’m surrounded with. Make a new rune set because the ones I have not perfect for my purposes. Avoid avoiding Odin. I should also probably set up a journeying schedule for Him, as well.
  8. Refine my journeying practice.
  9. Continue to honor the Vanir.
  10. Ancestors. Subcategories: Continue to honor and deepen my relationship with my Ancestors. Journey to my Hall and learn from them. Probably need to schedule that as well. Refine daiy worship practices.
  11. Interfaith work. Subcategories: Keep attending Berkeley-based interfaith events with my Morrigan priestess co-conspirator. Help plan, publicize, make contacts, and shake hands/kiss babies for Polytheist discussion group, which ideally will be starting in September. Continue to build relationships with various non-Heathen groups in the area:
  12. CAYA. Subcategories: continue with Aspirants class, reading and homework. Attend holidays and full moon events. Continue forming connections and friendships and learning.
  13. SBC. Continue to attend events.
  14. Coru Cathuboda. Continue to attend events and build relationships.
  15. Hrafnar. Subcategories: Attend events. Help do Freya stuff or Vanir stuff as needed. Other stuff TBD.
  16. SF Heathens. Actually attend one or two of their events.
  17. EB Heathens (?). Attend events.
  18. The Troth. Subcategories: Renew subscription. See if there are any topics I can write about and submit articles for. Get on the mailing list again?
  19. Continue to follow and contribute to online Polytheist discussion.
  20. Read Patheos blogs more often or I will catch yet more flak about it from the PanMan.
  21. Catch up on the care and feeding of my warder/girlfriend.
  22. Reach out to the (neglected) Aesir Gods as well.
  23. Attend weekly meetings for my Other Spiritual Practice so that I can do all of this and keep humble about it and not go crazy.

So yeah, I’ve got a lot on my plate at the moment; a great and exhausting balancing act. No wonder Hermes loves me so much (or so I’ve been told).

Mapping the Gods

I’ve received a few requests to write about the differences between the Gods in various places (I will get my “reply” issue fixed soon, I promise). Unfortunately I don’t know a lot about how the Gods are worshiped in different parts of the country, and only which Gods are favored in CA, CO, and KY; but I’ll share what I do know. What I know more about is which Gods seem to me to be strongest in different parts of the country, and I’d love to get Ember’s  and Heather’s opinion on this as well (sorry for the messy linking, ladies; I don’t know how to tag bloggers within a post yet).

As for God popularity, I know that in the SF Bay Area, Odin is HUGE. It is All Odin, All the Time. I cannot emphasize this enough. You cannot avoid Him or His people, lovely raven cacklers though they may be. Thor, Tyr, and Loki are also popular deities out here (though with very different segments of the population). Frigga had a big following about ten years ago, but I haven’t seen much of her since then except with a few people who are Dedicated to Her. Of the Vanir, you don’t see much emphasis on anyone except for my Lady. She definitely holds her own. I’d says she’s probably the third most popular Norse deity out here, after Odin and Thor. Where you have Freya, you’ll have some Freyrsmen, too. You can also find a few Skadi people around as well, especially near the Sierras.

I had assumed that’s the way it was broken down everywhere, but then I talked with a guy at PantheaCon last year who was from Colorado and has Bragi as his patron. His group came to the Freya Blot I ran, and they looked a bit uncomfortable with all of the Odinishness that seeps its way into everything Heathen our here. He said that very few people in his area work with Odin, but that a lot of people work with the Vanir and Thor. In Kentucky, at my first Kindred, we had a Freyrsman (our gothi), an Odinsman, and a guy dedicated to Sif, of all deities. (Yes, he did have long, very pretty white-blond hair.) Flatland Kentucky generally has a Freyr vibe to it, what with the lush greenery, tobacco, whiskey, and horses. I have no idea who’s popular out on the East Coast or in the Deep South, though.

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Socializing and “Gods Days”

Every week or so I get a day that ends up being dedicated to the Gods. Sometimes these are planned; most of the time they aren’t. (In the months between my initiation and my dedication, I was having 2-4 days a week turn out to be Gods Days; it was insane.) Today was supposed to be a drinking-cider-and-watching-the-World-Cup kind of day; it turned into a Gods Day.

Today’s God Day started with me cutting out of work early to catch a World Cup game with a friend. This friend happens to be a British Trad Wiccan and a priest of Pan, so after a couple of ciders (and after England was soundly schooled by Uruguay), we argued the pros and cons of practicing Hellenic Recon. I left him as the Japan vs. Greece game was starting (Greece was already being taken to task by Japan) to meet up with another friend.

This friend is a priestess of the Morrigan who has been recently tapped by Odin and Freya, and the only thing she knew about Norse mythology was that we have a Really Big Tree involved somehow, and that Odin has a spear and Freya’s sexy. (‘m simplifying here, but essentially she has no context for dealing with our pantheon.) I’m to be her Freya tutor (yay!); and, as with all of the other Morrigan and Odin types I’ve dealt with recently, the first thing I need to do is to convince her that Freya is actually not that scary. For reals. Personally, my reaction is, “How can anyone not love my Goddess? Love, beauty, sex, money, magic, hunky dead warriors… what’s not to love here?” but there’s always this subsect of people whom I come across who treat Freya like she’s a suspicious package in an airport. So, of course, “somehow” they end up paired up with a Freyasperson so they have the opportunity to work on their phobia. (Not that I have too much room to talk here; I have a similar Odinphobia I’m working through.)

Next up was another friend who’s a multi-trad priestess, though I know her primarily in the Norse context. It turns out that she’s now being visited by the Greeks as well (they’ve been awfully busy recently!), so we discussed that situation and various other projects that she’s working on. While I was there, yet another friend (another Odin/Morrigan girl) showed up and joined us for Thai food.

On the way back home, I got reminded by Zeus that I was due for our monthly check-in, so I did that–while driving, as usual. (I don’t know why it always has to happen on the highway, but outside, watching a cloud-streaked sunset, really is the perfect time to give Zeus a call.) When I got home, for the first hour or so I was writing up that conversation and various ideas from the day, which meant that I didn’t get a chance to do any Freya stuff until 11pm or so. It was all worth it–these days usually are really satisfying. And when there’s actual socializing involved (and cider!) it helps balance things out enormously. Tomorrow’s not a Gods Day (afaik), but this weekend looks to be packed. Ah, well. It’s what I signed up to do, and it really does given me a good excuse to hang out with some really cool people 🙂 I can’t complain.

Syncretism everywhere, Milky White…

(Sondheim reference.)

I’m pretty new to the blogging world. I’m still in the process of checking out other peoples’ blogs; I really didn’t know what I would find. I have to say I’m (happily) surprised to find so much Modern Pagan syncretism.

I’ve been Heathen–that’s the religion I’ve practiced, that’s how I identify myself–for the last fifteen years. I dabbled briefly with Wicca before I became Heathen; but then, who didn’t? I honor Freya, Freyr, Njord, Skadi, Heimdall, and others, and I am happy doing so. And honestly, I had been pretty snobby about keeping other gods and other spiritual practices out of my Heathenry, thank you. So it was quite a surprise to me last year when I got passed to Zeus.

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