Daily Devotions, Little Rituals – Why they matter and how to make time!

During the course of my Clergy work or even during general socialization in the Pagan community, I hear a lot of folks saying they just don’t have the time to interact with Gods or perform Magick for their everyday needs. As a mom of five little kids, I empathize on every level with the moms, busy folks working, and people caught in depression. More than one night goes by where I look at my husband and say, “Holy cats, it’s 10:30pm, didn’t you just get home?” Time passes quickly and we barely even notice it when we have our lives full of family and other distractions. I know what it’s like to have a ritual suddenly be interrupted because a little one comes down with a cold in the middle of the night or to have phone calls or other social obligations suddenly take up a free day on my calendar when I have otherwise planned a sacred rite. It happens, life happens, and when it does it can make us feel a little more disconnected than normal when we’re trying to have “Magickal lives.”

Seasonal depression and other anxieties creep their way back into our lives and rob us of our smiles and laughter. Magick can be a real anchor to what brings us joy and purpose and so neglecting spiritual selves can be just as detrimental as ignoring our physical and emotional needs. That’s why it’s important to emphasize the need for daily devotions and “little rituals” to help enhance our connection to the spirit world, build stronger bonds with our deities, and add a powerful Magickal punch to our workings. It should also be a part of our self-care routines to make time to call out to the divine, the ancestors, and the guides who help us through our life’s Path.

Making time for Magick

 

First, it’s really important to understand that performing Magick or making a stronger bond between the spirit world and this world is just as important as eating breakfast, brushing your teeth, or putting gasoline in your car before driving to work. A very critical part of being a Witch is making time for the things that really matter and even though there isn’t yet a huge societal push to embrace being all that is Pagan, it’s important for us Pagan Pioneers to invent the kind of world we want to live in. Whether you work with Gods, ancestors, angels, guides, or whatever brings you comfort, it’s important to make time with them. I’m a very deity oriented Pagan, which means that I put a strong emphasis on working with my Gods. Magick is not an imaginary force that helps me think more positively, it’s a real energy source that I tap into to proactively tackle my life’s challenges. It doesn’t matter what you believe in or how you do it, the point is just freeing yourself from life’s daily distractions to reconnect with that energy every day.

We’re swarmed with electronic aberrations when we log on to our phones and other devices. Face Book alone is probably the biggest time sink. Lots of bogus articles, fake news, and silly memes that don’t really make us feel satisfied. We steal time from ourselves every time we become obsessed with social media and the drama of others. If we have children or other loved ones who depend on us strongly, it also becomes a challenge to get a moment to ourselves. Sometimes it’s necessary to disconnect, put the phone down or wait for the children to nap to sneak away for five minutes. Your devotionals and “little rituals” don’t have to be elaborate. Just a few minutes to say, “Hello Ganesha! Thanks for helping me remove the obstacles in my life and giving me guidance through the obstacles that can’t be removed!”

One of the most important factors of these sacred moments is consistency. Write something down on an index card and have it at the ready on your personal shrine or altar. Make sure whatever message you’re sending to your deities or ancestors is something you really believe in and need for the moment. If it’s not, take a few more moments to change it to what’s relevant in the present. An example would be, “Goddess Kali, please help me face my ego. My husband and I just had an argument and I need your guidance to see past my own fears and work on a compromise that will honor our relationship.”  Whatever you write on that tiny index card, make sure it fits your life. Burn a little incense or give your Guardian dragon a delicious piece of chocolate.

Think about how you would want to be treated if you were on the other side of the veil. Would you likely assist some one you regularly heard from in time of need? Sure. As social creatures, we love attention and even little presents now and then. The spirit world is no different. Gods and spirits aren’t just recipes for spells, They like forming bonds with humans and listening to our daily dramas. Sometimes talking about those dramas and hearing yourself talk about where you are in life is real, tangible impetus to change whatever is blocking you. I’ve benefited greatly from little conversations with my faerie altar or even an intense conversation with Lord Ganesha. Hearing how I am struggling, out loud, out of my mind and into this mundane world helps me form connections and realize what work I need to do. It’s very much a form of meditation that helps center and focus me on what I really need to prioritize in my life to make it more productive, conscious, and purposeful.

The benefit of daily rituals and devotionals

As I mentioned before, the spirit world relishes the connection with the physical world. Your ancestors are there to help you and guide you through the same struggles they encountered in the living world. Fae Folk are interested in what your gardening plans are and Unicorns want to hear about what you’re doing in your Reiki class. It sounds ridiculous, however, I believe that Magick in all forms should be pursued with the same attitude and regard that we have for the physical world. It breaks down the disconnection with the natural world that modern society has afforded us.  Still not convinced? I’ll give you another example of why this attitude of taking Magick seriously makes such a momentous impact in our everyday lives.

Let’s say you’re a busy stay-at-home mom and there’s a lot of you out there who struggle just as I do to keep your head above water.  How many of you are like me and feel completely worthless at the end of the day when you see your house trashed or the kids are fussing before bed? Here’s how the daily ritual can help. After the kids finally get to bed, before you hop back on to Face Book or Instagram for a little “mom time” consider going to your altar and talking to the Goddess Gaia. This is one of my personal rituals and I’ll share it with you.

After lighting a small stick of incense and placing a tiny chocolate chip in Her offering bowl, I begin to talk to Gaia the way I would to another mother.  I don’t drink, although for those of you that do, pour a glass of wine for you and Gaia. “Hello Gaia, I want to tell you about my day. I cleaned for about 4 hours today, served my children 4 nutritious meals, put away the laundry, cleaned the animal cages, and ensured that the kids remained injury free for yet another day. Thanks for for guidance today in helping me become a more patient parent.” I’m not “just” interacting with Goddess Gaia, I’m also reminding myself that even if my house is trashed, I still worked my butt off throughout the day to keep it from getting worse. I provided for my children in the way that I must, and I also saw to the needs of my fur babies. I am allowing myself to develop a conscious mind of what I really do in a day and that mental inventory helps me get rid of the blues about the house being dirty. In my mind now, “Well, there’s always tomorrow.”  I am also proactively seeking guidance and changing the mindset I had. That’s Magick, folks!

Another huge benefit to performing these miniature rituals is that we build what I call “Magickal momentum”  for the times we really need to do a more elaborate ritual. As I am raising energy and making a regular connection to the spirit world every day, I find it easier and easier to raise energy for my bigger rituals such as Full Moon rites and the Sabbats. Since I am always phoning in to my deities, ancestors, and guides, they have a pretty good idea of what I’m going to be doing and why. I notice it helps pack a HUGE punch to my workings. It also helps me feel Magickal in the every day world and that’s a really important thing for those of us trying to legitimize Paganism in this country. We become more confident, more mentally healthy, and more robust in our attitude and how we see ourselves as Witches, Pagans, and other Magickal folk.

Thanks much for reading along and considering my words. If any of you have questions, feel free to contact me here or on my Face Book. I’m always open and happy to help those trying to form their sacred connections to the divine and build a better Magickal life for themselves and their families. Blessed Be! – Shining Quill

 

 

 

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