RSS

What it Means to be a Voice for the Gods

23 Jun

Recently, a friend and I were discussing a post on Tumblr about a particular Pagan feeling that they were being called by a particular set of deities to use their voice to help make change – both for themselves and for others.

This happens pretty frequently, when you really think about it. Lots of us are driven by the gods to write, to create, to string letters together to form words and sentences and paragraphs that can challenge people’s way of worship, or to rally troops into doing more with their religious practice. For some of us, this means paddling boats, navigating islands or stirring pots.

For some of us, it means sticking our noses into things to try and make a difference. In this case, I am going to refer to it as being a voice for the gods. While it sounds great on the surface- speaking for a god, in all actuality, it can suck. Hard.

Speaking for a god isn’t something that is clear at first. Sometimes, you’ll be in a forum, typing a response to someone, and next thing you know, your fingers are flying across the keyboard and you’ve just typed out a paragraph of text and you’re not entirely sure where it came from. Or maybe you’ll be talking with someone, or see something occur, and you’ll get this swell of energy that overwhelms you, and the words just fly into your head and out of your mouth.

Or perhaps you realize that you see something that is wrong (against ma’at in this case) and you get this nagging sensation that you need to do something about it. You try to ignore it, but it fails horribly. You look to the source of the voice, and you realize it’s your pot stirring deity telling you to say something.

That’s how it seems to start when you speak for a god.

You come across issues, or something occurs that should be called out and corrected – and the god in question pops in and says “say something”. You tell them no, and yet, they persist. And persist. And persist.

So what do you do? How do you handle becoming a god’s mouthpiece?

Expect to work on yourself, first and foremost. If you’ve got short comings with anger or stress- get ready for a massive pile of shadow work to sort all of that out. Someone who shuts down easily under stress, or bites off more than they can chew regularly will not make a good mouth piece for the gods. You can’t stir pots or enact change if you’re busy screaming at the spoon, yelling at the cook book or some hapless newb who made a wrong turn and happened upon the scene. Only once you can properly keep your cool and speak clearly, will you likely get pushed to start talking to others and making waves in other locations.

Be ready to learn about discernment- because many times you might be thinking you’re talking for a god when, in fact, you’re talking for yourself under the guise of “well X said so!” You’ve got to learn where you end and the god/s begin. If you can’t keep your own agenda to yourself, and not conflate it with the god’s agenda, you will soon find yourself in a heap of trouble.

Get ready to learn about holding your tongue. Many times, our reaction to someone who says something we dislike is to lash out. That’s typically useless in the long run. You make no friends by telling everyone that they are a poopy head and when you make no friends, you make a lot of enemies- which can also be useless.

However, friendly as you may be, be prepared for people to dislike you. Be prepared to have enemies. Be prepared for a lot of crying- because that’s what using your voice does. You don’t get to choose when and where you use it- They do. They will tell you to stick your nose into places you’d just as soon steer clear of.

When Set finally sat down and talked to me about what it was I was actually doing, I was told that this wasn’t about me, but about saying what needed to be said- regardless of people’s kinship to me. This means that when you see a BNP being a jerk on a forum, you say something. This means that when you see an entire forum wrongly accusing a group of people of being something they are not- you speak up and state the facts. You speak up and you speak out politely, but firmly- which means people are going to get angry.

You remember that Kickstarter issue that happened a while back? That was a Set moment.

You know that whole KO Q&A thread I worked on a while back? I was nudged to do that because Set said it was important. It didn’t matter if I liked KO or not, it mattered that people were spreading misinformation.

People were not acting in ma’at. My feelings on it were irrelevant.

That also means that when I write a book review that was written by a fellow Kemetic, or read a post by one of my Kemetic friends, I don’t get the option to pretend it was great if I didn’t really think it was.

I’m not doing this for me; I’m doing it for Him. I’m doing it because I said I would.

That means I don’t get the option to take a day off or let my feelings get in the way.

It means sticking your neck out there and owning up to it- and that creates enemies, no matter how nicely you say something. And that is the true fact of life of being an enactor of change via words for a deity.

You can also expect to mess up a lot. We all start somewhere, and we all have to learn what our limits are and where our strengths lie. Even though I’ve been doing this for a while, I still mess up off and on. It’s because of this that a friend of mine gave me the Two Response Rule to utilize. Set supported my use of it, and I still utilize it (religiously) to this day.

Now, don’t get me wrong- it’s not all bad. There are ups to working on things like this. I can say that due to the words I’ve spun out on the internet, KO has a clearer name for things, that there are the beginnings of a good Kemetic community blossoming, and I’ve been able to see some interesting shifts in the Kemetic community- which I have been happy to be a part of.

But the fruits of the labor can be short lived, and not all of us are especially cut out for the work the gods might call us to.

So if you are sitting in shrine one day, and a god says “Hey, I want you to go out there and say stuff when I tell you to say stuff” but the above picture doesn’t sound like something you can handle, I urge you to say no. Or I urge you to barter on the terms from said deity- just in case this isn’t something you can hack. Speaking for the gods isn’t simple and it can be a very grueling, spoon eating adventure and it’s not something you can just drop once you’ve started. And because the gods often have their eyes on the bigger picture, and not necessarily your current stress level, sometimes it’s best if people don’t become mouthpieces for the gods- because they aren’t made to handle it.

Because like most anything that a god pushes us to do – its usually not about us, but about what the gods want.

Have you ever been asked to be a mouthpiece for a god (whether it be long term or short term)? Do you think you could handle being a mouthpiece for a deity? Would you want to be?

About these ads
 
11 Comments

Posted by on June 23, 2013 in Kemeticism, Rambles

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

11 responses to “What it Means to be a Voice for the Gods

  1. shezep

    June 23, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    I did that for awhile. It was a PITA. I’m happily retired now. It was a very exhausting thing to do. I did make enemies, and friends, and frenemies. I’m enjoying the quiet life now.

     
  2. Eddie

    June 23, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    Honestly – if someone says they are speaking as a voice of a god or for a god, I’ll usually turn away or be less inclined to listen to them. Not because I think people can’t, but because I don’t think that is something that should be said. Mostly because it is far too easy to excuse ones words or arguments by saying ‘this is what the god thinks’, and after seeing that happen I’m very suspicious about the behavior.

    And I think that if one is speaking for the gods/a god, the god will show through their words or actions.

    To me, being a voice for my gods means that I always take responsibility for what I write. It came out of my fingers or my mouth, and regardless of if I was being influenced or even had my body taken over by a spirit or god, I have to own up to whatever I wrote. So, while I do consider myself a voice, I would never say that I’m speaking for or on behalf of a god (outisde of a ritual possession setting, and even then, if it comes out of my mouth, it’s my responsibility and I have to deal with any consequences).

    But! I agree with what you’ve written. We need to be critical about accepting that role and really understand how to be ethical when we are in this role, and we also need to do a lot lot lot of self-reflection and work to make sure we aren’t letting our egos speak before the gods.

     
  3. Soli

    June 23, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Sharing, sharing, so sharing. Nicely put.

    Something I keep in mind for my own interactions is this: since I follow a minority way, on some level what I say and how I act is going to be taken as a kind of window into the whole tradition. If I don’t act decently, I’m not the only one affected by it.

     
    • Eddie

      June 23, 2013 at 10:55 pm

      Feel this ^ so much. I have to act well and speak well, because I am one of the few voices for what I do. If I bring dishonor to that, I’m really failing my faith and my gods.

       
  4. darkbookworm13

    June 23, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    Thank you for posting this, I agree with all of the points you made, as well as making sure you don’t get burnt out trying to fulfill the expectations placed upon you by the Gods. I have been asked to be the mouthpiece for Loki and His families.

    I started blogging in March after I reached the epiphany of stagnated beliefs that was bogging me down. Loki helped dynamite everything that I had compiled, and helped me start over fresh. But in exchange for His help, He asked me to speak out about Him and His kin, to show the truths about Them instead of the lies that so many believe.

    I have struggled with how to accomplish this, but never doubted that I should try my best to do as They have asked me. I often try to offer truths online when people discuss Loki, the lore regarding Him, and His role in the sagas. It has earned me the anger of some, but also helping others searching for positive info about Loki as well.

    I didn’t really ever consider whether I wanted to, but yes, I do want to. Loki saved me from self destruction, as well as helping me survive what would have been a deadly childhood. Acting on His behalf is my way of honoring what He has done for me, and out of love for Him as a mentor and parental figure.

     
  5. aegoddard

    June 23, 2013 at 6:28 pm

    After some bad experiences with people who thought they were speaking on behalf of a Higher Power I’m glad to see this. It reminds me of a post I had about channelers. I may have to post it again and link back to this :)

     
  6. Angela

    June 26, 2013 at 10:27 am

    Can you please clarify what you mean by the Two Response Rule?

     
    • von186

      June 26, 2013 at 10:38 am

      The Two Response Rule states that if you are in a discussion with someone, and you are either talking past one another, the other person just isn’t “getting it” or making the effort to truly understand what you’re saying, or things are degrading into a fight- you have a maximum of two responses to try your hand at the discussion and to state your ‘case’. if after you respond twice, things don’t appear like they are getting better, you walk away from the conversation. Its used largely against trolls, bigots and jerks.

       
      • Angela

        June 26, 2013 at 10:41 am

        Ah, that’s brilliant. Thank you.

         

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,316 other followers

%d bloggers like this: