The moon was (is, at the time of writing this) very full and bright tonight. The sky was clear, the air just crisp with the promise of a coming fall and as per my usual hour of going out at night to go before one God or another there was fresh cool dew already on the grass. A little too cool for bare feet unfortunately, as I found by foolishly attempting to go out as such. I ended up slipping back in a little giddy and laughing at myself to fetch shoes before properly heading out.
I’ve decided that while my circumstances only allow me to do so much just now I can at least dedicate certain regular times to make offerings to the I’m currently most drawn too. That means every Wednesday night for Odin, and every full Moon for Mani thus far. Yes that means I’m giving more time for Odin than Mani, that doesn’t mean I care about Mani less, just different arrangements for different relationships. Come to think of it, I really should decide on something to do for Loki. I’m just not as sure what yet. Later I may write a little on what I’ve been doing for the Old Man on Wednesday nights, but it just doesn’t seem to be time for that yet.
I’ve spoken to Mani on quite a few nights when the moon was shining and made me think of Him since that day I wrote of in one of my earliest posts (Here for those that are curious). Helps that I work outside and largely alone doing midnight security patrols. Mostly to say how glad I was to see Him and feel His presence. Sometimes to share concern for a friend with Him. Always just to end up throwing back my head and laughing, carrying on in the moonlight in ways I haven’t for a very very long time.
Tonight though, was very different. Firstly, because I had come to honor Him with offerings and secondly because I had resolved (Partly thanks to advice from those who replied to my last post which I am very grateful for) to trust in my feelings come what may. At first things went about as I expected. I made my offering and spoke to Him of a friend I was concerned for who also happens to honor Mani.
I’m still hesitant to say what transpired next was a conversation between Mani and I. Which I suppose is largely that I fear to seem to put words in the mouth of a God as I know some do. Suffice to say, that’s how things seemed to me. I read somewhere in recent weeks (and I apologize to the author of this statement for not recalling where as I write this) the idea that Faith may be belief in something you can not prove to others. Slowly I am growing to understand the truth of this.
I sensed He was pleased. Both with the offering and that I came to Him on behalf of another and yet… that wasn’t the offering He really wanted of me. It came back to that question He had asked me when I very first met Him: “What would you have of me?”
That was the offering Mani wanted me to grant to Him. One wish. One request for myself and no one else. I spoke with Him as to why, and how that could even be considered an offering. Simple enough: it was the one thing I was the most reluctant to give and required the most trust of me. I could write for Him, pray to Him, make offerings, even sing and dance a little for Him and all manner of more serious work for Him besides. But to ask something of a God was an idea I had rejected on a number of counts.
Both in my time as a Christian and my very earliest years sorting through various Pagan ideas (which largely meant books that refer back to Wicca) I was surrounded by the notion of prayer to the Gods to ask for things. Even the most basic Lord’s Prayer contains a number of requests for divine aid on the speaker’s behalf. I had left the Church feeling as though many there leaned on YHVH and Jesus as a crutch through their prayer (I have met many Christians since who do not give me this impression). My earliest encounters with Pagans of varying types was similar, with the focus of personal interaction with the Gods being to request aid. That would be about the time I started asking “shouldn’t we be doing things for Them?” and subsequently began finding others who felt the same.
That reason for avoiding making such a request didn’t come up so much while I was speaking with Mani. I think because His having already made it clear He desired a request, any argument that came close to “I don’t think it’s appropriate for me too…” was already null and void. The real issue came back to what made it an offering and a hard one to give.
Trust. I hadn’t thought about it before, but to ask something of a God requires a certain degree of trust. Not that the God will grant the request, He may not. That’s up to the God in question. Not trust in a God, rather, trust in myself that I would not allow my expectations to change the relationship and joy that I had found. I could ask just about anything of Mani, but He may not choose to grant it. Or perhaps not fully understanding things I may ask for something that is not His to grant. It would be very easy then to say “He didn’t do this for me so I’m not going to do this for Him!” or some such nonsense in that case. I wouldn’t want that to happen.
In the end, I did try a few cop outs. Asking for Him to aid another didn’t count, that was completely off the point and I was already comfortable doing that besides. Asking for Him to “be the light that guides my path” was too vague, etc. The point was for it to be something that I might truly feel disappointed if it didn’t happen. I did finally ask for something very practical that I do need help with, though as it relates to my personal circumstances it isn’t something I’ll write of here.
For now… it’s past four in the morning here. A little earlier than when I’d sleep on a night when I’m working, but still late enough. Time for sleep.