I was brought up in a strict Ialian Catholic home but I always felt there was something missing in my life spiritually.
The bond I have with nature has been with me all my life. A connection with pets and other animals. The strength I gain just by being outdoors. Looking toward the heavens and being part of the universe.
I found myself not losing faith but gaining a spirituality that was beyond what I saw in both church and it's practitioners.
My grandmother from Austria was a healer and the stories that were passed down often made me wonder if she left her home country for America due to more than a marriage. Hearing her described as a "doctor" when she had limited education.
It is through her I learned to appreciate nature even more. She was magickal and I sit here thinking she never learned to speak english yet somehow we could communicate. I was still a child when she passed, she was born in 1885 and left us in the 70's. We would walk through the forest and eat berries she would point out, mushrooms, and running streams that were not polluted.
Moving forward, I was perusing the book store that we frequented and I was drawn to a section that I never really ventured. I had always been interested in the faiths I knew about, but that day was different. It was as if a string had be connected to me leading me to the Spiritual section of the store and away I went and continued to investigate something I had always believed.
We all have gifts, though some people do not even realize it, and to tap into that realm of existance which allows us freedom to be who we truly are is rewarding.
I am still captivated at all the tools I already had within my home. I sometimes felt "why did I buy this," or "I did I pick this up while camping?" Now, I realize it all had meaning and purpose. I sometimes think that my upbringing suppressed my true nature.
A minor event that occured while camping. I had been wanting to purchase a compass. I just did not want to spend the money. I spoke of it for a few week and on one of our camping trips, in the sands by a lake, there it was sparkling for me to find.
I may not be as knowledgable as many people here, but I have realized my spirituality permeatest through me, both within and without. That things can and will happen with that piece of me that is not really a part of this world.
This is a blessing that other "faiths" may feel as evil, but to me it is who I am.
I am happy for those who were raised in the pagan or heathen ways. The knowledg you have and the openness of those who practice with you. You are blessed. Some of us, well, we were tenderly nudged by the unseen to be brought into the folds of mysticism.
Thank you for reading.
I was raised in a strict Christian household, attending various Christian schools and churches. However, ever since I was young I had a strong interest in Celtic and Norse mythologies and ancient religions. I had always felt a strong attraction to the Celtic god Cernunnos, more so than to the Christian deity.
When I was 13 I met a friend who had an interest in Ceremonial Magick. I started to do my own research and discovered neo-paganism. From the moment I found it, I knew that paganism was the path for me. I have studied various different pagan religions during my time as a pagan, some of these being Ceremonial Magick, neo-Wicca, Asatru, Odinism, Traditional Witchcraft, and Druidry.
I grew up in a home where my mother was raised catholic, my dad, nada. They tried to send us to Sunday School at a Presbyterian church, I think we went twice. My cousins are Nazarene, other cousins are catholic. My mother is now an Atheist, my father, still nada. After being around Christianity and Catholics, and living in the Focus on the Family head quarters, I now know that Christianity is just not for me. Going back and forth from one thing, "Christianity" to another "Paganism" and trying to find myself, I have finally realized that paganism is where my heart is, will always be.
It has been a slow evolutionary process for me. I suppose it came from my disgust with the lies I had been fed by the Catholic Church. Don't get me wrong, I have been lied to by Pagans as well. However, that was their personal problem and had nothing to do with their religion. I simply am what I was meant to be. I'm still evolving. Just be careful, what you worship and who you worship with. Do not follow people because they can fail and people are mostly not a good representation of any religion.
I have always been uncomfortable in a christian church but I never really knew where I belonged until I was living in England. It was 1998 and I became friends with a Wiccan High Priestess named Karen. It was her that introduced me to Wicca. I have been following that path since then. In fact, next month will be 14 years for me.
<3 Thank you. It's always nice to just debate instead of insult each other and argue.
Well for me, I'm not even sure if I am truly a pagan or not. I've always been attracted to paganism since I was about 12 or 13 (I'm 36 now). For the last several years I've tried to ignore the way I feel about the religion but it's just something I can't keep on dodging. I think not actually going forth and practicing it does something to me after awhile and makes me lose interest in it. But it never fails, it always finds me again. When I wake in the morning one of the first things I think of is the lord and lady. When I walk outside, the first thing I think of is the lord and lady. It's like they are always on my mind. Perhaps having a great interest in nature has something to do with it? I'm not sure what's led me here to tell you the truth. I've never really have been very religious. I've always believed in a higher power though. But this is something I just can't ignore any longer. I've read so many books in the past on the subject but I'm still pretty much at square one, where I was 16 years ago. The really depresses me when I start thinking of all the time I have lost when I could already learned so much. It's almost like I'm afraid to jump in and get my feet wet for some reason. Hopefully someone on here can help me figure out what's going on. I truly believe with all my being this is where I am suppose to be. Maybe I just need to jump in and give it my best shot. I'm sure the gods will understand my true intentions. After all, there is no one correct way to do things
I am in the same boat as you are to be honest. I find that if you do not practice you lose grip of it. You just have to, if you feel this is it for you, stick to it. :)
Phoenix, I have a very hard time concentrating. I think that plays a big part in my problem. I've been doing some searching on the net today and I'm thinking I might have ADD. I'm going to make an appointment with my doctor and see what he says. Whatever I read in books I don't absorb the information, just bits and pieces. Maybe that plays a part of why I think I need a teacher to fully learn Paganism. I know it really sucks lol
I became a practicing Pagan at the age of 18, and began studying it at the age of 17. I grew up in a Southern Baptist house, which never seemed to resonate with me. I felt awkward in the church, nothing felt right, and nothing seemed to fit right with me in the beliefs. I will admit, I was a rebellious teen, but I did not decide to be pagan because I wanted to slight my parents. I didn't even tell them, and they still don't know today (it has been 5 1/2 years). Sadly, my entrance into the learning process was filled with misinformation as a friend at the time tried to teach me, and she was still new to it herself.
Anyway, I digress. I feel as though I came home to the religion I have chosen, but even in the past couple of years everything seemed kind of "off." I felt like I found something close to what I believed, nothing that resonated truly with me. It wasn't until recently that I found my true path, and am working to delve more into the culture that I have fallen in love with. I have never been dedicated as I am now to learn a language I probably wouldn't have learned before, learn about customs and such from a culture I never paid much attention to, learn to play an instrument from the country, or even knew was in my ancestry. I feel more connected with my Patron Goddess, and am crafting my religion around Her.
I have always felt a calling to the path in an indirect way, I guess. I never felt right being a Christian, while I do respect their beliefs and tolerate their preachings. It just wasn't the path for me, especially since I didn't like the concept that everything I did was considered a sin, or feeling pressured to do things I didn't want to do (Father was a Sunday School Teacher, so he pushed things a lot).
My feet were always grounded in nature, and always had a connection with trees (every time I had to take a branch, I felt bad because I thought I was hurting the tree, always apologizing to them and talking to them). Now, the Irish Gaelic culture and Celtic spirituality have become a huge part of my life, and has actually been there the entire time, but too blind to see it. It is one of those times where I look back and say "Darn, there were so many hints!" lol.