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Illyandra
March 22nd, 2001, 03:48 PM
MM~~

Since I have been participating in the Tarot class for about a week now I figured I should introduce myself.

I'm Illyandra (don't ask what it means I've no clue! I made it up or heard of something similar in high school).
I am 28, married, have a 9 yr old boy, and an eclectic solitary. I live in SW Florida. Most of my interests and hobbies are listed in my profile.

Now to answer a question from the Tarot thread... Tigerwallah asked about my religious upbringing because of my answer and interpretation to the Hierophant thread. She asked me if I was raised Catholic....LOL!

I was, like many children are, born into Catholicism because that was what my Father was raised. I believe he had a partial church upbringing. He even forced Mom to convert before they were married, but my older sister was the only one to be baptized. We never saw the inside of a church until I was a teenager and my Dad had left my mother. That is one reason for not wanting much to do with organized religion....

I had always felt a kinship to the earth , all of her creatures and nature in general. As a child, I was raised near my paternal grandfather's farm and learned to love being around the livestock and the smell of freshly plowed earth in the spring. How many 7 year olds do you know that can lay claim to having a 500+ lb bull as a pet? I also learned at a young age about the function of livestock in the circle of life.

I hope not to offend any vegetarians out there!! I apologize if I do but this was how I was raised. My pet bull, aptly named Bully, used to follow my sister and I around the cow pasture. He was not yet fully matured which made my Grandparents nervous at first but then they realized at his growth stage he wouldn't harm us. He was a loving and gentle animal. We brushed him like we did the horses, and he would drool and groan, swaying side to side as we stroked. He loved having his ears scratched. He also would run from across the field to us when ever we entered the pasture.

And then came the day Granddad decided to butcher him. My sister and I were heartbroken of course. We cried and begged and pleaded to no avail. He already had a young bull for the next calving season and ours would cause terrible fights and commotion. That night I went into the barn alone where Granddad had tied Bully up. I tried explaining as best I could what was going to happen. I didn't understand it fully myself at the time. But I think as far as bulls go, he'd had a pretty nice life even if Granddad had to cut it short. He'd been loved, he'd roamed the pastures freely, and he'd been well fed.

Back to the religious upbringing part, sorry to have sidetracked a bit there but it applies to the rest. I was partially raised, at least in my teen years, in a Pentecostal church. For awhile it gave us structure and faith in something when our lives had been so disrupted by my parents split up. I soon grew tired of the fundamental Christian church. It was either their way or you followed Satan. They did not promote creativity or free thinking. I hated the constant brainwashing and conditioning. If it wasn't in the bible or hadn't been discussed by the pastor then it was satanic.

They set themselves up to be superior to everyone else. All stands on any issue was set by the church heads, all male of course! We were told who was the better candidate, which side was the side god supported, what issues should be protested because they were ungodly or satanic. When we talked of ecology or preservation it wasn't because the earth, plants, and animals deserved our respect or were equals; but because we were the caretakers of the earth and therefore our responsibility to do as we pleased to our benefit, not theirs.

On Sunday these were the most pious people on the planet, any other day of the week watch out! And I went to a couple different churches growing up, one was rather small, another was humongous and getting ready to build a new church. So it wasn't one particular church that turned me off. I also found out later that while Wicca is a recognized religion, Pentecostal Christians are listed on the FBI list of growing American cults.

....another is because my husband. He too was born Catholic, but he was also raised Catholic. He attended Catholic school, suffered beatings by the penguins that ran the school, and is one of the most wishy washy people I know for having been raised with religion. His WHOLE family are a bunch of hypocrites.

For such a large family they are very cold, selfish, and unsupportive. Every little boy in the family is raised with the expectation that he will be the next family priest (I guess there is one living in the Philippines). They constantly gossip about one another. The grandparents live off of their children, each one puts in equal amounts of support even though there are a couple (doctor, postman, computer analyst) that make tons more money than their siblings who struggle to support their own children.

My husband is constantly called up in the middle of the night by his alcoholic mother to be chewed out for some new imagined sin that he's committed against the family. His brother is 19, living at home, and still has not completed HS or a GED. And she even tried bribing him out of marrying me because I refused to sign a document promising that I would raise any children we have together Catholic.

So those are the reasons behind my aversion to organized religion per se. It does not mean I am against all organized religion. I have not had contact or experience with all religions, or even all of the Christian denominations that are out there.

I haven't even gotten to the point of being able to call myself anything other than an eclectic pagan yet. I am always studying new paths, pantheons, and traditions. Some I like better than others but I have found that there is always something positive that I have learned from each one, and usually incorporate into how I live and practice the craft. The pagan world is full of loving, trustworthy people whose beliefs are closest to my own.

I am happy to join this forum as I have joined others to continue my own growth and development, to seek like minded friends, and to share with others.

Kaylara
March 22nd, 2001, 09:54 PM
Merry Meet and thank you for that wonderful insight into yourself! I hope that you will like our not-so-little family, and I look forward to seeing you around the boards!

Blessed Be!
Kaylara

mol
March 23rd, 2001, 10:50 AM
Thank you for your story! I am glad you have joined us here and I want to welcome you to the Community!

Semele
March 23rd, 2001, 11:13 AM
I also want to welcome you to the community. I have enjoyed your particpation in the tarot forum. It was nice to read about you here. Gives a little more background and insight into how you came to be the wonderful person that you are today. Thanks for sharing and please enjoy the community.

Semele

adrian
March 24th, 2001, 10:05 AM
Greetings and welcome!

I too am new to this site but not paganism.
I too am angry and disgusted with organized religions.

But we still grow and are free to worship as we please.
peace to you sister, may we all walk in light.

Ellegon
March 24th, 2001, 11:47 AM
I am still sorta new here...but I wish to welcome Illyandra and Adrian to the community...its a great place to meet others of the same beliefs and varying beliefs...being eclectic, I find it fascinating that I can come here and get several viewpoints in helping my journey...Blessings to you both!

Amora
March 25th, 2001, 03:29 PM
Merry Meet!!!!!!

Earth Walker
March 27th, 2001, 05:27 PM
:) Greetings and welcome from the 4 of us....
Sabrina & Robyn, and our two cats, Mystique
and Frou-Frou. :bigredgri



Her Light will guide our paths. :sunny:

Silverwitch
March 27th, 2001, 06:37 PM
Greetings Illyandra and welcome to what must be the most interesting site around. So many people, so many different opinions and yet everyone is great! Enjoy!