PDA

View Full Version : Pantheist daily practice



Windsmith
June 12th, 2007, 01:05 PM
I want to hear about folks' daily (or nearly-daily, if you're an overcommitted slacker like I am!) practice of Pantheism. Rituals, meditations...whatcha got?

For those who identify as both Pantheist and Pagan, do you think of certain elements as being more one than the other, or has everything integrated smoothly? Where else do you draw inspiration from?

And, hey, here's a $5 question - why do you do what you do? What do your practices "do" for you?

cheddarsox
June 12th, 2007, 05:45 PM
I wear jewelry that calls to mind my panthestic faith, so that I am reminded, randomly throughout the day what I believe. It gives me a little pause, to stop, even if just for a second or two and dwell on how my faith colors my perspective right there in that moment. Those several daily acknowledgements and moments of awareness keep me humble, in awe and in touch.

I also tend to get online and visit religious forums. Taking part, as a pantheist, helps me understand my faith better. I get excercise in how my faith informs me in different areas of my life, and how it is connected to my thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Plus, it is fun.

I also pour out libations of feed and water on the ground daily. This reminds me that all my sustenance ultimately comes from the universe, not the grocery store. That nothing is really "mine", and that it all gets used by something. Water and feed poured out are not wasted, they remain part of the cycle. I need to cease to consider all things that are not being used on my behalf, or the behalf of humans, as wasted.

OK, nuff for now.

cheddar

Windsmith
June 13th, 2007, 01:21 PM
I'm a sucker for the small ceremonies of daily life. When I was a "normal" Pagan, I tried to shoehorn special rituals into my day. Now I'm better served spiritually by finding the sacred in my existing routines, and adding Pagan ritual elements for "flair."


Anchoring/releasing: First thing when I wake up in the morning, I anchor myself in my body and my life. Last thing before I go to sleep at night, I release mself to wander off and have fun dreaming. I'd love to explain in greater detail, but since we moved my brain refuses to use the one I painstakingly perfected over the last few months in the apartment, so I'm in the process of creating a new one.
Excercise meditation: While I ride my stationary bike in the morning, I sink my attention down into my body and be aware. It's being with What Is - even when What Is means a sweaty waistband and aching calf muscles.
Shower ritual:In addition to the cleansing power of water, I envision the other things I do in the shower - the shampooing, the body washing, etc., as giving me strength, perserverance, or keen insights, or things like that.
Song offering:During my commute, I sing "offering songs," little ditties (blues numbers, mostly) of my own composing. I sing to the sun on my way to work. In the darker half of the year, I sing to the moon on my way home, but at this time of year I struggle with that, so I sing something seasonal, or one of my goofy Pantheism songs. It's a focused celebration of those parts of What Is that I feel best connected to.
Devotional walk:For my morning break, I take a walk. While I walk, I celebrate the four winds. I know I'll get nothing from them in return, but I adore wind, and honoring them with word and breath feels very good to me.
Tea meditation:For my afternoon break, I make a small pot of tea. I sit and watch it brew. I know that sounds criminally boring, but I relish the inner quiet and the opportunity to recenter myself in the midst of my busy work day. Also, my tea set has 2 cups; I fill them both but only drink from one. If someone comes into my cube while I'm drinking, I offer them the other cup. It's a gesture of sacred hospitality and connectedness. If no one wants tea, I pour it out as a libation to the Earth, as a reminder that I don't have to consume everything in my path.
Grace:For a long time after giving up Christianity, I gave up saying grace over meals. But I missed that moment of appreciation. So instead of thanking god(s), I thank the plants and animals who became my food, the farmers who raised them, the butchers and bakers who turned them into food, and the truck drivers and grocery-store shelf stockers who brought them to me. I appreciate my food so much more when I remember to do that.

Dang. That's a big list of little things. They're all small, simple actions that do so much to anchor me in my life and in the Cosmos, and to remind me of the immanent holiness of every thing and every moment that makes up What Is.

ravenscape
June 15th, 2007, 12:30 PM
I'm a sucker for the small ceremonies of daily life. When I was a "normal" Pagan, I tried to shoehorn special rituals into my day. Now I'm better served spiritually by finding the sacred in my existing routines, and adding Pagan ritual elements for "flair."

Anchoring/releasing: First thing when I wake up in the morning, I anchor myself in my body and my life. Last thing before I go to sleep at night, I release mself to wander off and have fun dreaming. I'd love to explain in greater detail, but since we moved my brain refuses to use the one I painstakingly perfected over the last few months in the apartment, so I'm in the process of creating a new one.
Excercise meditation: While I ride my stationary bike in the morning, I sink my attention down into my body and be aware. It's being with What Is - even when What Is means a sweaty waistband and aching calf muscles.
Shower ritual:In addition to the cleansing power of water, I envision the other things I do in the shower - the shampooing, the body washing, etc., as giving me strength, perserverance, or keen insights, or things like that.
Song offering:During my commute, I sing "offering songs," little ditties (blues numbers, mostly) of my own composing. I sing to the sun on my way to work. In the darker half of the year, I sing to the moon on my way home, but at this time of year I struggle with that, so I sing something seasonal, or one of my goofy Pantheism songs. It's a focused celebration of those parts of What Is that I feel best connected to.
Devotional walk:For my morning break, I take a walk. While I walk, I celebrate the four winds. I know I'll get nothing from them in return, but I adore wind, and honoring them with word and breath feels very good to me.
Tea meditation:For my afternoon break, I make a small pot of tea. I sit and watch it brew. I know that sounds criminally boring, but I relish the inner quiet and the opportunity to recenter myself in the midst of my busy work day. Also, my tea set has 2 cups; I fill them both but only drink from one. If someone comes into my cube while I'm drinking, I offer them the other cup. It's a gesture of sacred hospitality and connectedness. If no one wants tea, I pour it out as a libation to the Earth, as a reminder that I don't have to consume everything in my path.
Grace:For a long time after giving up Christianity, I gave up saying grace over meals. But I missed that moment of appreciation. So instead of thanking god(s), I thank the plants and animals who became my food, the farmers who raised them, the butchers and bakers who turned them into food, and the truck drivers nad grocery-store shelf stockers who brought them to me. I appreciate my food so much more when I remember to do that.Dang. That's a big list of little things. They're all small, simple actions that do so much to anchor me in my life and in the Cosmos, and to remind me of the immanent holiness of every thing and every moment that makes up What Is.
Wow. Just. Wow. What an awesome day of ritual you've described. This is the third time I've read this post in three days, and I can't begin to describe how beautiful it is to me.

For several months, I've been dissatisfied with myself for getting out of the habit of ritual and observance, and I've wanted to re-initiate some of the rituals that I used to do more *ahem* religiously.

But right now, they just don't fit snugly and comfortably into my life for a variety of reasons. The daily milestones have changed and I need to adapt to that and make ritual fit the current rhythms, not try to force the rhythms to the pattern I used to have.

You've inspired me, Windsmith. It won't be easy, and it won't be quick, but you inspire me with confidence that I can once again bring inner space and outer space into harmony.

Windsmith
June 15th, 2007, 01:24 PM
Wow. Just. Wow. What an awesome day of ritual you've described. This is the third time I've read this post in three days, and I can't begin to describe how beautiful it is to me.

For several months, I've been dissatisfied with myself for getting out of the habit of ritual and observance, and I've wanted to re-initiate some of the rituals that I used to do more *ahem* religiously.

But right now, they just don't fit snugly and comfortably into my life for a variety of reasons. The daily milestones have changed and I need to adapt to that and make ritual fit the current rhythms, not try to force the rhythms to the pattern I used to have.

You've inspired me, Windsmith. It won't be easy, and it won't be quick, but you inspire me with confidence that I can once again bring inner space and outer space into harmony.ravenscape,

Thank you. I wrote and fired off that post and then thought, Oy, that is long. Is anybody even gonna read it? Thank you for letting me know that it resonates for you.

I think a good first step is just to be present and aware of the rhythms of your day. Which parts do you really enjoy doing, and may even have already taken on a ritual feeling? Where do you have some time that feels blank (for me, it was my commute)? Are there acts you find yourself rushing through and wish you could take a little more time to savor? Does your day feel balanced to you - and do you feel balanced within it? In no time, you'll find your rhythm.

You're quite right - the process isn't easy or quick. But I don't view it as difficult, either. Just...patient. And totally worth it.

Windsmith
June 15th, 2007, 01:32 PM
I wear jewelry that calls to mind my panthestic faith, so that I am reminded, randomly throughout the day what I believe. It gives me a little pause, to stop, even if just for a second or two and dwell on how my faith colors my perspective right there in that moment. Those several daily acknowledgements and moments of awareness keep me humble, in awe and in touch.Cheddar, that's lovely. I love the idea of having an anchor like that right on the body in plain view. Usually when I catch sight of myself, I just see freckles. Maybe I could dedicate a few of them to pantheism... ;-)


I also tend to get online and visit religious forums. Taking part, as a pantheist, helps me understand my faith better. I get excercise in how my faith informs me in different areas of my life, and how it is connected to my thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Plus, it is fun.This really gets me thinking. Visiting MW and reading posts on the Ardent Pantheism list are really important parts of my day, and yet I don't consider them part of my daily spiritual practice, and I can't figure out why. Weird.


I also pour out libations of feed and water on the ground daily. This reminds me that all my sustenance ultimately comes from the universe, not the grocery store. That nothing is really "mine", and that it all gets used by something. Water and feed poured out are not wasted, they remain part of the cycle. I need to cease to consider all things that are not being used on my behalf, or the behalf of humans, as wasted.Oooh. This is a fabulous sentiment, and it struck a chord in me. How wonderful that we can both incorporate libations into our practice and each attach a distinct and yet completely compatible meaning to the action. Gosh, I love this religion!

Glory
June 25th, 2007, 12:46 AM
I only have one small thing.

I've gotten into the habit of doing a daily Tarot 3-card draw, to see what the cards/universe/whatever has in store for me for the next 24 hours or so. It reminds me that there is something bigger than myself but is still a part of me, and the connectedness of me and that something.

Silverfangs
June 25th, 2007, 08:51 AM
I'm a sucker for the small ceremonies of daily life. When I was a "normal" Pagan, I tried to shoehorn special rituals into my day. Now I'm better served spiritually by finding the sacred in my existing routines, and adding Pagan ritual elements for "flair."


Anchoring/releasing: First thing when I wake up in the morning, I anchor myself in my body and my life. Last thing before I go to sleep at night, I release mself to wander off and have fun dreaming. I'd love to explain in greater detail, but since we moved my brain refuses to use the one I painstakingly perfected over the last few months in the apartment, so I'm in the process of creating a new one.
Excercise meditation: While I ride my stationary bike in the morning, I sink my attention down into my body and be aware. It's being with What Is - even when What Is means a sweaty waistband and aching calf muscles.
Shower ritual:In addition to the cleansing power of water, I envision the other things I do in the shower - the shampooing, the body washing, etc., as giving me strength, perserverance, or keen insights, or things like that.
Song offering:During my commute, I sing "offering songs," little ditties (blues numbers, mostly) of my own composing. I sing to the sun on my way to work. In the darker half of the year, I sing to the moon on my way home, but at this time of year I struggle with that, so I sing something seasonal, or one of my goofy Pantheism songs. It's a focused celebration of those parts of What Is that I feel best connected to.
Devotional walk:For my morning break, I take a walk. While I walk, I celebrate the four winds. I know I'll get nothing from them in return, but I adore wind, and honoring them with word and breath feels very good to me.
Tea meditation:For my afternoon break, I make a small pot of tea. I sit and watch it brew. I know that sounds criminally boring, but I relish the inner quiet and the opportunity to recenter myself in the midst of my busy work day. Also, my tea set has 2 cups; I fill them both but only drink from one. If someone comes into my cube while I'm drinking, I offer them the other cup. It's a gesture of sacred hospitality and connectedness. If no one wants tea, I pour it out as a libation to the Earth, as a reminder that I don't have to consume everything in my path.
Grace:For a long time after giving up Christianity, I gave up saying grace over meals. But I missed that moment of appreciation. So instead of thanking god(s), I thank the plants and animals who became my food, the farmers who raised them, the butchers and bakers who turned them into food, and the truck drivers nad grocery-store shelf stockers who brought them to me. I appreciate my food so much more when I remember to do that.

Dang. That's a big list of little things. They're all small, simple actions that do so much to anchor me in my life and in the Cosmos, and to remind me of the immanent holiness of every thing and every moment that makes up What Is.


Your post is very inspiring. Simple things in a routined life can just keep us in touch with our divine self... Hope you don't mind I "steal" some of your ideas hehe...



My personal daily routine lacks discipline, and sometimes I almost "forget" about apreciating what life has to offer. But mostly I let my mind fly everytime I walk outside - in the park, in the noisy streets, in the quiet neighbourhoods - everytime I have to go from a point A to a point B, I use my walking as a form of active meditation, trying to observe the little things that are really important. Things that mostly in our stressed lives we seem to forget or not pay attention.

Also I try to relax my mind when I take a bath. These days I'm trying to atune myself with the water element... don't know why. Just something that was sugested in dreams...

Anyway, at night, I try to let the window open and lay myself in the bed just looking at the sky and the trees. It helps me getting relaxed.


And that's it ^^

Windsmith
June 25th, 2007, 12:36 PM
I've gotten into the habit of doing a daily Tarot 3-card draw, to see what the cards/universe/whatever has in store for me for the next 24 hours or so. It reminds me that there is something bigger than myself but is still a part of me, and the connectedness of me and that something.Glory, this is great. We just moved; our physical existence is a swirl of chaos just now. But you remind me that I've been itching to hunt down my Tarot deck and start doing some readings again.


Your post is very inspiring. Simple things in a routined life can just keep us in touch with our divine self... Hope you don't mind I "steal" some of your ideas hehe...Steal away! I'm glad to be inspiring people with my little actions...some days, they don't seem like enough to me, and I have to keep reminding myself to avoid the "bigger is better" trap with spirituality. There's a place for big, showy, elaborate rituals and celebrations, but they don't work as well for me in the everyday.


My personal daily routine lacks discipline, and sometimes I almost "forget" about apreciating what life has to offer.I'm gonna let you in a little secret, Silverfangs: so does mine. I call it my "daily practice" because they're meant to be routine actions, but I don't do everything every day. The songs and the tea ritual are only weekday deals. My weekend is sorely lacking is spiritual structure. And there are days when I feel too tired, too ornery at the world, or too "blah" to do much of anything on my list. I have fallen asleep in the middle of releasing at night. For me, what matters is intention and continued, sincere effort toward improvement. I strive every day to be better than I was the day before - at everything, including my spirituality. And some days, that means being honest about the fact that I don't want to sing this song, or do this meditation today. I created a routine because it helped me focus, and most of the time I follow it, because I enjoy its components. But I would much rather skip them or replace them with a more genuine-in-the-moment expression of my feelings toward What Is, than to have them become a heavy obligation or a chore.


But mostly I let my mind fly everytime I walk outside - in the park, in the noisy streets, in the quiet neighbourhoods - everytime I have to go from a point A to a point B, I use my walking as a form of active meditation, trying to observe the little things that are really important. Things that mostly in our stressed lives we seem to forget or not pay attention.This is great, and I agree: taking little moments to just be aware of what surrounds us, and what we're a part of, is so important.


Also I try to relax my mind when I take a bath. These days I'm trying to atune myself with the water element... don't know why. Just something that was sugested in dreams...You know, I've been feeling lately like I could help myself a lot by attuning more to water. I just might try that bath thing! If you have any other tips, please load me up.


Anyway, at night, I try to let the window open and lay myself in the bed just looking at the sky and the trees. It helps me getting relaxed.Oh, wow. I feel relaxed just reading that.

Thanks so much for sharing these.

Eleisawolf
June 25th, 2007, 08:11 PM
Little things, little things. I keep reading this thread and wracking my brain to figure out what I do. Much of my former daily ritual is lost. But here are little things that still creep in...

When I wake in the morning, I take a moment to treasure the moment. It's really the only point in the day when I can hold onto the brief feeling of being right where I want to be, in the middle of it all. I treasure the moments in life like I treasure the moments in pieces of music or theater or art... so when I'm in the midst of one, I try to stop and take a mental snapshot. That helps create a path into those moments, while also reminding me that they are the small stepping stones that carry me beyond them and through my life.

When I prepare food, throughout the day, I try to add intent as one of the ingredients. It's a very kitchen-witchy thing... I add love to soup. I focus hope into the stirring of a pot. I visualize the nourishment that is inherent in the food and see it entering not only my body, but my soul. And I remember that we really are what we eat, and feel that connectedness with the earth, knowing that it's becoming part of me and that I will someday return the favor...

At night, when I take my dog out, I take time to look for the moon. If it's new, I look for what its light tends to block. If it's overcast, I feel for the insulation, the warmth. I sing to the moon at night, reaching out across the sky to remember that we are on the far-flung arm of a massive galaxy surrounded by more galaxies and even more of that which we don't understand. And it makes me content to know that there's plenty of mystery out there without having to create any mystery for myself or anyone else. I take an odd comfort in that...

And every day I find something for which to be grateful... even on my worst days, I can be grateful for something. I feel that a spirit of gratitude is a thanks to the universe. Life may not be perfect, but it's life, and I'm lucky to have it... I won't forever. That makes it precious, and I treasure every bit of it while I have it. That is humanity's gift, not its curse. That life is short gives us the chance to really treasure it. Tolkein said something to that effect, I believe in The Silmarillion...

Like for Windsmith's rituals, not all of these things happen every day without fail. But they help. I used to have meditation and yoga and grounding rituals, and would like to reincorporate them when I feel the pull. But it hasn't been strong enough yet... I have other things to do. But that's life. And IMHO it's worth celebrating in whatever little ways we can.

Peace

ETA: Oh, and "I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues." (as Dr. Seuss's Lorax would say) Actually, I speak to the trees and to animals and to rocks... they have presence just as I have, and who am I to know whether they understand anything or not? They seem to respond sometimes, even if only in my mind. And they soothe and connect me. I like talking to trees...

Windsmith
June 26th, 2007, 11:59 AM
When I prepare food, throughout the day, I try to add intent as one of the ingredients. It's a very kitchen-witchy thing... I add love to soup. I focus hope into the stirring of a pot. I visualize the nourishment that is inherent in the food and see it entering not only my body, but my soul.This is something I want to start doing, but I always forget. I'll be almost done making dinner and say, "Oh, shoot! I was going to do something...witchy with this meal." :lol:


If it's new, I look for what its light tends to block.This line piqued my interest. What, exactly, do you see that the moonlight "tends to block"? Do you mean things in the sky, like stars and clouds, or do you mean things around you on the ground?


And every day I find something for which to be grateful... even on my worst days, I can be grateful for something. I feel that a spirit of gratitude is a thanks to the universe. Life may not be perfect, but it's life, and I'm lucky to have it... I won't forever. That makes it precious, and I treasure every bit of it while I have it. That is humanity's gift, not its curse. That life is short gives us the chance to really treasure it. Tolkein said something to that effect, I believe in The Silmarillion...This is so beautiful. And not to disparage anyone else's religion, but this is a big part of why I love Pantheism so much. It teaches me to be grateful for What Is because it is, not because some deity gave it to me, and was feeling benevolent and decided to spare it for one more day.

ravenscape
June 26th, 2007, 01:01 PM
Some things I've tried in the last couple weeks:

Meditative walk at lunch time - doing this 2-3 times a week

A few minutes of descriptive astronomy each evening

Some things I've tried to approach with more mindfulness:

Evening walks with my dog
Meals, especially dinner

I would really like to focus on that liminal moment between sleep and waking each morning. But, for me, those early waking moments are dull and dark. I've usually been on my feet for a good 10 minutes before I feel human. Such is life.

Eleisawolf
June 26th, 2007, 01:11 PM
This line piqued my interest. What, exactly, do you see that the moonlight "tends to block"? Do you mean things in the sky, like stars and clouds, or do you mean things around you on the ground?

Really, both. The moon's light, as much as I love it, blocks the fainter stars and creates shadows that sometimes makes it hard to see what the night does to the earth. Darkness is as beautiful to me as light.

Have you ever heard of or considered having a "night garden"? There are certain plants that are their most beautiful at night, and some people undertake to create gardens of them that are intended to be visited in the dark instead of during the day.

I'd like to have one, someday...

Peace

Windsmith
June 27th, 2007, 12:31 PM
Some things I've tried in the last couple weeks:

Meditative walk at lunch time - doing this 2-3 times a week

A few minutes of descriptive astronomy each evening

Some things I've tried to approach with more mindfulness:

Evening walks with my dog
Meals, especially dinnerThese sound great, ravenscape. Care to give us a feel of how these things are working for you? And what's "descriptive astronomy"? It sounds fascinating.


I would really like to focus on that liminal moment between sleep and waking each morning. But, for me, those early waking moments are dull and dark. I've usually been on my feet for a good 10 minutes before I feel human. Such is life.I'm with you. I've almost lost touch with that liminal space for good. I'm either up or I'm out like a wee, red-headed lightbulb. If you find a way to reconnect and make something of those moments other than a thick gray fog, let us know!


Really, both. The moon's light, as much as I love it, blocks the fainter stars and creates shadows that sometimes makes it hard to see what the night does to the earth. Darkness is as beautiful to me as light.Thank you. And also...wow.


Have you ever heard of or considered having a "night garden"? There are certain plants that are their most beautiful at night, and some people undertake to create gardens of them that are intended to be visited in the dark instead of during the day.I've heard of them, but I've never been in one at night to see it. Maybe when you have one someday, we'll all come visit.

equinox2
June 27th, 2007, 03:48 PM
Wow, the things I miss by being away from the pantheist section on MW for a few weeks!

Windsmith, the stuff in post #3 is awesome! (as are many other things people have posted on this thread). Iíd like to add more to my daily practice, and will as time goes on. I especially want to add more family inclusive Ė not just me-in-private type of things. I wonder if before dinner readings of a verse or two from Marcus Aureliusí meditations will fit?

Anyway, I have only one small thing to add to this thread, my little daily practice I started a year or two ago, that has been nice. Not earth-shaking, just nice.

I take a brief moment Ė usually like 50 seconds or so, but rarely as long as several minutes, to sit and silently think about the wheel Ė often about where I and other family members are on their wheel of life (what challenges, say, my second son is facing, or what evolutionary needs my eldest has now), but also often about where we are on the wheel of the year, where the moon or a planet is in itís phase, or where a big project or such is on the cycle of start to finish, or just to appreciate something, or whatever comes to mind (hence the variable length of time needed). Recently, itís often been how my move is going Ė our family bought and is moving into a new house because my son Rowan has just been born, and we could use a little more space.

This is always at the very start of my day, and I sit facing the direction of the season (North between Yule and Ostara, then E until Litha, etc. It makes the transition points more real, because suddenly facing a different direction feels a bit odd for about a week or so. I do this just before putting on my shoes - in fact I get them and sit down with them just before starting. Part of this is symbolic Ė my spirituality is what equips me for the day, just as much as having shoes on. Part of this is just practical Ė I canít forget to do my meditation since the shoes are a part of my normal daily routine. I also do a shorter but very similar practice when taking my shoes off before bed Ė I take them off facing the direction, and often give a quick thought to a review of the day, or some other thing that is on my mind, and how it relates to the wheel or compass.

Another nice aspect of tying this to my routine for putting my shoes on in the morning is that makes this very portable, yet real. When I travel, it keeps me anchored to knowing which way is North, and brings some of the familiarity of home to wherever I am. In that regard Iíve been pleasantly surprised that many airports now have a prayer room with a big compass on the floor - how convenient (then I may use it without the shoe part, just add a short meditation then, that day)!! Of course, I know it is there for Muslims so they can pray facing Mecca, but it works well for me nonetheless.

Thatís the only regular daily practice I have, though Iíll often address or notice or otherwise appreciate particular glorious things Ė be that a nice sundog, or a flicker on a branch, or a rising star, or whatever.

Thanks for the cool thread, and may the water quench your thirst-

ravenscape
June 27th, 2007, 04:21 PM
These sound great, ravenscape. Care to give us a feel of how these things are working for you? And what's "descriptive astronomy"? It sounds fascinating.
I used to do a meditation walk with a Qi Gong group a few years ago. The group split up as we moved to different office buildings, unfortunately.

There's a trail that circles the office complex where I work. It's mostly shady with lots of different species of trees. We have a few heritage oak trees on the property, too, and they've been worked into the overall landscape -- actually they dominate it. An oak tree "garden" is HUGE, especially when the trees are 200-400 years old.

I walk along the path, paying attention to the rustling wind in the trees, the sunlight glinting through the leaves, the sound of insects, the spoor of various wild animals in the area, etc. I make a short stop with each of the oak trees and usually lean against them with my back pressed into the bark, looking up at the elaborately gnarled branches.

To do it right takes 30-45 minutes.

When I walk my pup, I try to see the neighborhood and trails the way she sees them. I try to anticipate what will catch her attention and imagine what a rotating pinwheel or a wooden statue of a bear might mean to the neural pathways she inherited from her ancestors.

Descriptive astronomy is just a fancy term for "eyeball" astronomy. I observe which stars become visible first, where the constellations are, the phase of the moon, etc. I remember the myths associated with the constellations.

Silverfangs
June 27th, 2007, 07:59 PM
I'm loving reading the experiments of all of you. MW really is a important place to learn new things that can help us a lot in our journey.


I just forgot to mention something I sometimes do, specially with the arrival of summer - more than just look throught the window, where I can see the moon and trees (unfortunatelly city lights fades most of the stars), I am compeled to let it open and put my head of the building just to feel the night wind blow throught my face. The sound of the leaves moving in the trees with the wind, makes me feel confortable, in peace, and specially, not alone.
This is something that I am discovering with time... is that at night, this kind of calm and serene state is much more easily achieved. It's like, when all the city sleeps, when all is quiet and silence reigns, then if we are more alert, we can hear nature "talk"... and sometimes it can "say" very important things to us. More than in books or websites, I am trying to let the wind bring guidance to me.



Peace!

Windsmith
June 28th, 2007, 12:40 PM
Wow, the things I miss by being away from the pantheist section on MW for a few weeks!Hah! Yup, we went off and got ourselves some forum guides, and a bunch of new folk showed up ( ::waves at new folk:: )...it's kinda hoppin' in here now.


Windsmith, the stuff in post #3 is awesome! (as are many other things people have posted on this thread).::curtseys:: Why thank you, kind sir.


I wonder if before dinner readings of a verse or two from Marcus Aurelius’ meditations will fit?Hah! There's a thread somewhere else around here...Just Pagan, I think, from someone looking for daily readings. You should definitely suggest that.


Anyway, I have only one small thing to add to this thread, my little daily practice I started a year or two ago, that has been nice. Not earth-shaking, just nice. <snipped for length> This is an excellent practice. I particularly appreciate how practical it is; I adore practices that make us more present to the ordinary moments of our day, rather than trying to force "specialness" on some set-aside time.


I walk along the path, paying attention to the rustling wind in the trees, the sunlight glinting through the leaves, the sound of insects, the spoor of various wild animals in the area, etc. I make a short stop with each of the oak trees and usually lean against them with my back pressed into the bark, looking up at the elaborately gnarled branches.Guh. I am envious of your trees.

But I remind myself that I there is beauty around my work-place, as well. Down the block is a small pond, ringed with trees. There are always ducks of some sort around. I hear frogs croaking at each other. At least 3 dragonflies are always chasing each other around. And on really hot days, there is a half-submerged log where I have seen as many as 17 turtles sunning themselves. While I do wish that the area hadn't been so pointlessly overdeveloped (several of the buildings around us are empty), I am learning to be grateful for what I have, and to think about how to preserve that, rather than spending all my time bemoaning destruction I can't undo.


Descriptive astronomy is just a fancy term for "eyeball" astronomy. I observe which stars become visible first, where the constellations are, the phase of the moon, etc. I remember the myths associated with the constellations.Aw, sweet. That's my kind of astronomy, too - the "I'm not sure what that is, but it sure looks pretty and shiny" school! :)


I am trying to let the wind bring guidance to me.A fellow wind-follower! Fantastic. As my user name might give away, I am a dedicant of the wind (still trying to determine what that means in a pantheistic context). It does have excellent guidance to give.

equinox2
June 28th, 2007, 02:21 PM
Thanks Windsmith -

I've posted on that other thread. Also, how could I forget! I have two webpages I visit every morning if I'm on my computer that day - they are nature images that I use as short, visual, daily devotionals. They are even in my .sig, but I forgot to mention them - APOD and EPOD. I wish there was one on biology too.

Blessings of light and dark-

Eleisawolf
June 28th, 2007, 04:40 PM
Thanks Windsmith -

I've posted on that other thread. Also, how could I forget! I have two webpages I visit every morning if I'm on my computer that day - they are nature images that I use as short, visual, daily devotionals. They are even in my .sig, but I forgot to mention them - APOD and EPOD. I wish there was one on biology too.

Blessings of light and dark-

Oh, thanks, Equinox! I do go to APOD every day if I can, but I didn't know about EPOD. A new item to add to my daily inspirations!

Yay!

Peace

peggyelizabeth
June 28th, 2007, 08:20 PM
I've been pretty busy lately, but I've been following this thread pretty closely & I feel like a shlub. I don't really do anything on a daily basis. I'd love to include something everyday, but somehow if I force anything, it just feels artificial and, well, forced.

I'm impressed with all the little things that everyone is doing (or trying to do), but I sometimes feel too overwhelmed to do more than just recognize a special day for what it is mentally and move on. I sort of feel guilty, like I'm shirking my duty or something.

ravenscape
June 29th, 2007, 12:48 PM
I only have one small thing.

I've gotten into the habit of doing a daily Tarot 3-card draw, to see what the cards/universe/whatever has in store for me for the next 24 hours or so. It reminds me that there is something bigger than myself but is still a part of me, and the connectedness of me and that something.
Hi Glory,


I used to be pretty regular about doing a morning 1 or 3 card draw up until a few months ago. Your post encouraged me to think about re-starting this practice. But, I've been wanting to make more time to get to know an Oracle deck I acquired last year: Brian Froud's Faeries Oracle.

At the same time, I've been feeling a little critical about the efforts I'm making to add some moments of reflection to my day. The aspect of this that has been niggling me is that my efforts to weave spirituality into the mundanities of my day have an empty and self-centered feel to them. They are about me and the Universe, at a macro/micro level, but not about me as a social creature or agent of change.

So this morning, I did a one card draw from the Faerie's Oracle and the card was #30 - The Laume. This card is about charity, about giving and receiving, about paying attention to and helping those who (and that which) come across our paths with discernable needs. We are so abundantly blessed simply by being alive and a part of All That Is. How can that abundance not stream through us and beyond us to bless others in their turn?

Giving and receiving - these need to be an intrinsic part of any rekindling of my spirituality.

Windsmith
June 29th, 2007, 01:04 PM
I have two webpages I visit every morning if I'm on my computer that day - they are nature images that I use as short, visual, daily devotionals. They are even in my .sig, but I forgot to mention them - APOD and EPOD. I wish there was one on biology too. I visit those sites when I can, as well. Also, I visit National Geographic's Photo of the Day (http://lava.nationalgeographic.com/pod). It's not as science-minded as APOD & EPOD, but they're amazing pictures of something happening or happened in our world; a great reminder of what else is out there beyond our own lives.

I also found this site today: Botany Photo of the Day (http://www.ubcbotanicalgarden.org/potd/)!


I've been pretty busy lately, but I've been following this thread pretty closely & I feel like a shlub. I don't really do anything on a daily basis. I'd love to include something everyday, but somehow if I force anything, it just feels artificial and, well, forced.

I'm impressed with all the little things that everyone is doing (or trying to do), but I sometimes feel too overwhelmed to do more than just recognize a special day for what it is mentally and move on. I sort of feel guilty, like I'm shirking my duty or something.No need to feel like a schlub, peggyelizabeth. The part I bolded, about recognizing a special day mentally - that's a huge action right there. It's more than a lot of people do. If you feel like doing more, you can find a way to do it. If not, you're fine where you're at. One of the great things about Pantheism is that we get to make our own way along the path, without having to fear the wrath of an angry deity if we do it "wrong."

Silverfangs
June 29th, 2007, 01:50 PM
A fellow wind-follower! Fantastic. As my user name might give away, I am a dedicant of the wind (still trying to determine what that means in a pantheistic context). It does have excellent guidance to give.

Indeed it does... I'm trying to make a more personal connection with the elements, specially water and wind. Since I am not only pantheist, but a pagan with pantheist beliefs, I'm doing my best to try everything to establish that connection.

Now the funny part:

Yesterday, at morning, I woke up with my parents screaming with me. Why? I falled asleep with my head totally of the window and only woke up with their noise. I told you guys that the sound of the wind, speacially at night makes me relaxed and in peace...

P.S - at least it wasnt the full body outside the window8O



Peace!

peggyelizabeth
July 5th, 2007, 10:58 PM
last night, as I was watching the fireworks, I thought of you guys. You're a pretty darn special group of people. Thanks for being you and sharing what you beleive with me, my life is richer because of it.

ravenscape
July 6th, 2007, 12:42 AM
((((peggyelizabeth))))

Thank you for your thoughts yesterday! I enjoyed a wonderful celebration. My DH is in a garage band that plays mostly Steely Dan along with 70s and 80s standards. My oldest son recently started playing with the band, and adds some saxophone riffs to the mix.

The band leader put on a potluck block party yesterday. It was an amazing experience, watching my spouse and my son playing in the same band, and enjoying music from my teen years and early adulthood played by both of them. The band is a kind of dream machine, it's hard to explain. Anyway, for me yesterday was a lover/mother epiphany that I'm still processing on many levels.

Thank you for keeping me (and us) in your thoughts.

Tanya
July 6th, 2007, 01:19 AM
Windsmith's amazing.... I love the tea ceremony!

Too add a few of my little things....

After I get out of the shower, I hit myself all over with lotion and powder. I really take my time to touch and love my body, and see myself naked in the mirror...Its really easy (especially for a female in this 'Victoria Beckham is the epitome of beauty" society) to forget that we ourselves are part of the creative unfolding of the universe, and deserve to be honored.

When I go out to feed my ducks in the morning I find I'm saying a little hello to the sun, and at night before bed, after brushing my teeth I go and stand under the stars for a few minutes and just let myself feel grateful and small.


I think the key as Windsmith was getting to is to make each of our actions grounded in an awareness of our place in the greater universe

Windsmith
July 6th, 2007, 05:08 PM
last night, as I was watching the fireworks, I thought of you guys. You're a pretty darn special group of people. Thanks for being you and sharing what you beleive with me, my life is richer because of it.You're welcome! And thank you so much for being a part of this small gathering of amazing people. Every presence here adds something wonderful, and I am tickled to be able to be touched by y'all. :hugz:


I really take my time to touch and love my body, and see myself naked in the mirror...Its really easy (especially for a female in this 'Victoria Beckham is the epitome of beauty" society) to forget that we ourselves are part of the creative unfolding of the universe, and deserve to be honored.Tanya, thank you so much for this reminder. My wife and I have recently made a whole slew of changes, on a mission to get healthy. This is not a crash diet; these are behaviors we hope to maintain for the rest of our lives. Unfortunately, because weight loss is the most easily measured markers we have of how well we're doing, we have to battle constantly against making it the only marker. I think I need to institute a few minutes of naked mirror self-appreciation for us every week.


I go and stand under the stars for a few minutes and just let myself feel grateful and small.Nighttime really is perfect for that sort of perspective. When you catch even an inkling of how very big the Cosmos is...yup; "grateful and small" hits it on the head.

Eleisawolf
July 7th, 2007, 01:57 AM
APOD is great to help one feel small. But also to feel part of What Is.

I'll have to come back tomorrow and post my experiences from tonight--First Friday, the art gallery opening night in Denver.

I was stung by a wasp on the Fourth (along with my poor dog), so the fireworks were not my key concern of the day, though the holiday did hold much for me. I feel honored to have been thought of at that point, but also, perhaps tomorrow, I will post my musings about that experience, as well as the rest of the day. In the meantime, I invite you all to read my LiveJournal, as listed in my sig (Pruning the Rambles). The entry for the fifth explains some... but I do have a Pantheist observation of it as well.

More to come this weekend.

In the meantime, peace and blessings to all my friends on MW. To meet soon again...

Peace:fpraise:

Rhisiart
July 7th, 2007, 04:06 AM
Hello Everyone! Wow, how this little corner of the Universe has grown! This is a great question, too, with some great ideas as well. I might be one of those, well ok, I AM one of those who are somewhat guilty of probably not leading a daily pantheistic pagan lifestyle, in practice anyways.

My life is rather hectic right now, for reasons not needed known right now, so many times my off time is fragmented and disjointed...very unpleasant...though I have had times in my life where I was able to have daily rituals and practices that reflect beliefs in th Universe. One day I really hope to bring em all back, too!

The biggest thing for me is to connect with the Universe in someway, connect with nature, try to understand the world around me, this life that runs thru me. No not all at once, not really in meditation either, though sometimes its greatly needed. I'm talkin just day to day experiences that ground me in my beliefs and strengthen and build me understanding and connection with All That Is.

It could be the marvel at the sudden powerful thunderstorm, the seeming closeness of the moon or incredible distance of the stars. It could be the heat of the day or the cool of the night, the wheat and corn growing in huge fields or the rush of the river under the bridge.

I talk to the World when I walk by myself, to my sumac trees when I water the grass, to the ants that try to sneak into my house, or the spider that hangs in my bathroom. I ask the Moon questions at night when noone else can here me and I scold the Sun for being so hot, though I know it wont help...neither really hear me...

I watch and read the news and hear about Natures path and how it adversley affects many. I hear how many attribute this to gods and remind myself, "No, this is just the nature of it all."

If I could, I would put aside some time for deep meditative contemplation to take the burden of the sudden epiphanys that seem to come only after Ive made some mistake or run against the grain, though I usually know better.

In the long run, I think anything you do that helps you to be a better example of the human species, centers you and grounds you in the absolute reality of whats really going on around you, is worth doing. Knowing your place in the Universe and finding your balance will surely make this life that you have much easier to understand and bear.

Hope to swing by again this weekend! Everyone Be Well!

Windsmith
July 9th, 2007, 12:09 PM
The biggest thing for me is to connect with the Universe in someway, connect with nature, try to understand the world around me, this life that runs thru me. No not all at once, not really in meditation either, though sometimes its greatly needed. I'm talkin just day to day experiences that ground me in my beliefs and strengthen and build me understanding and connection with All That Is.

It could be the marvel at the sudden powerful thunderstorm, the seeming closeness of the moon or incredible distance of the stars. It could be the heat of the day or the cool of the night, the wheat and corn growing in huge fields or the rush of the river under the bridge.These sound wonderful, Rhisiart. I find it very helpful to remember that, for me, the most effective way to connect to All That Is is simply to be present to the ordinarily extraordinary moments of life on this planet. I don't even need to do anything out of the ordinary to acknowledge it; just being there and drinking in its awesomeness is usually enough.


I talk to the World when I walk by myself, to my sumac trees when I water the grass, to the ants that try to sneak into my house, or the spider that hangs in my bathroom. I ask the Moon questions at night when noone else can here me and I scold the Sun for being so hot, though I know it wont help...neither really hear me...The thing is, I don't know that it matters so much that they can't really hear you. I, too, talk to various entities around me, none of which will ever answer, but it helps me so much to remember that they are all immanently sacred beings, rather than just "things" to be used, discarded, or ignored according to my whim.


I watch and read the news and hear about Natures path and how it adversley affects many. I hear how many attribute this to gods and remind myself, "No, this is just the nature of it all."This is a big one for me, too. Some of my deist accquaintances can't understand how I can derive any sort of comfort from believing in a godless Cosmos where things just...happen. But frankly, I find it far more comforting than believing in a Cosmos controlled by a deity who would subject his/her/its followers to the sort of suffering I see around me. I also think you really hit it on the head when you say "Nature's path." Nature isn't "out to get" humans. Nature just does what it does, and sometimes humans and our constructions have the misfortune of being on the path.


In the long run, I think anything you do that helps you to be a better example of the human species, centers you and grounds you in the absolute reality of whats really going on around you, is worth doing. Knowing your place in the Universe and finding your balance will surely make this life that you have much easier to understand and bear.Big, biiiiig thumbs-up for this one. In the 10 short months I've been actively practicing Pagan Pantheism (wow. Has it really been that little time?!?), I already feel like I've taken giant strides in this direction, and it feels amazing.


Hope to swing by again this weekend! Everyone Be Well!Good to see you hanging around here again, Rhisiart!

Diotima
July 12th, 2007, 09:18 AM
Good thread!

Here's what it do (too seldom and too irregularly, I'm afraid)

-Take care of my altar. I have a simple altar in front of a window in our living room. I change the "display" on it when seasons change according to the calendar: on Dec 1st (Winter), March 1st (Spring), June 1st (Summer), September 1st (Fall). On my Altar, I keep symbols of all the Elements important to me:
Air (incence), Fire (at least 1 candle), Water (a small glass bowl filled with water), Earth (small stones) and Life (at least one potted plant, never cut flowers!)

-When I feel the need, I come to my altar to do a prayer ritual. For me, it feels right to pray primarily in the context of a ritual -I feel uncomfortable with the idea, that I chat to the Universe the way Christians are supposed to talk to their God. It also makes my prayers more mindful. If you are wondering, I simply address my prayers to Light, which I understand to be the sum of all good things that exist. I don't pray Universe, because, though greater than Light, Universe also contains bad things.
My ritual consists of lighting the candle and incence, saying the opening words for ritual, then praying aloud using my own words, then saying closing words to the ritual. After this, I usually sit down on the sofa and remain there quietly for some time, do a Tarot reading or listen to some beautiful music...basically, the idea is that I sit quietly and listen what the Light has to offer to me. I usually keep my holy book at hand in case I want to write something down.

-Sometimes I just try to feel the elemental energies flowing around me.

-I learn about nature around me, try to get to know it, try to understand it and try to live in harmony with it. I don't think that I should consider myself to be less than other beings (that's why I eg. eat meat), but I believe that I ought to treat other living things with respect, and nonliving things as habitats important for flourishing of life .

-Most importantly, I study ethics and try to live as I teach. I believe that if I do against what I know to be right, or if I refuse to find out what is right, I cannot become happy...and cannot be one with Light.

Windsmith
July 12th, 2007, 03:27 PM
Take care of my altar. I have a simple altar in front of a window in our living room. I change the "display" on it when seasons change according to the calendar: on Dec 1st (Winter), March 1st (Spring), June 1st (Summer), September 1st (Fall). On my Altar, I keep symbols of all the Elements important to me:
Air (incence), Fire (at least 1 candle), Water (a small glass bowl filled with water), Earth (small stones) and Life (at least one potted plant, never cut flowers!)Your altar sounds lovely, Diotima.


When I feel the need, I come to my altar to do a prayer ritual. For me, it feels right to pray primarily in the context of a ritual -I feel uncomfortable with the idea, that I chat to the Universe the way Christians are supposed to talk to their God.I'm still not comfortable with "prayer," either. I suppose I do it all the time - I talk to the winds, the sun and moon, the Cosmos itself...technically, that's prayer, but my mind is still getting stuck on the idea I grew up with of prayer as petition. In my Christian youth, even when we were offering prayers of thanksgiving, the underlying idea was to thank God now so He'd help you out later. I'm not asking the Cosmos for anything now, so I have problems calling what I do prayer.


If you are wondering, I simply address my prayers to Light, which I understand to be the sum of all good things that exist. I don't pray Universe, because, though greater than Light, Universe also contains bad things.Here you've opened up a whole new avenue of discussion. If a pantheist considers All That Is to be holy, is ze then obligated to worship/reverence/pray to everything it contains? Is it OK to admit that, while all things may be holy, there are parts of that holiness that we don't like. Does excluding these things from the focus of our daily practice make that practice imbalanced or just pragmatic? I have opinions, of course (I have opinions on almost everything), but I'll hold onto them for a while to see if anyone else wants to chime in first.


My ritual consists of lighting the candle and incence, saying the opening words for ritual, then praying aloud using my own words, then saying closing words to the ritual. After this, I usually sit down on the sofa and remain there quietly for some time, do a Tarot reading or listen to some beautiful music...basically, the idea is that I sit quietly and listen what the Light has to offer to me. I usually keep my holy book at hand in case I want to write something down.Beautiful. Once again, we come back to the idea of simply being present (which, of course, is far from simple). If anything might be said to unify all the practices people have talked about so far, this might just be it.


]Sometimes I just try to feel the elemental energies flowing around me.I definitely need to take more time to do this one!


I learn about nature around me, try to get to know it, try to understand it and try to live in harmony with it.Excellent! I'm starting to get into this some, too. For so long I compartmentalized my intellect away from my spirituality; how wonderful it is to now have a spirituality that encourages me to use my brain not just to think about weighty theological matters but truly to explore this world of ours!


I don't think that I should consider myself to be less than other beings (that's why I eg. eat meat), but I believe that I ought to treat other living things with respect, and nonliving things as habitats important for flourishing of life.Absolutely. The way I view it, pantheism doesn't want humans debasing themselves and feeling so bad about the state of the planet that we curl up with a billion pints of Ben & Jerry's and commence history's largest pity-party. It calls on us to say, "Humans need to survive; other species and habitats need to survive. How can we get what we need without destroying it all or letting ourselves be destroyed?"


Most importantly, I study ethics and try to live as I teach. I believe that if I do against what I know to be right, or if I refuse to find out what is right, I cannot become happy...and cannot be one with Light.Good for you. I'm still trying to sort out what, exactly, my ethical code looks like. I know when I or someone else does something that runs counter to it, but I find it difficult to articulate. I'm glad to hear that's going better for you.

ravenscape
July 12th, 2007, 03:54 PM
How about just a couple pints of Ben and Jerry's and a teeny tiny pity party?

Or just the Ben and Jerry's and no pity party?

* puts Chunky Monkey on the grocery list*

Diotima
July 13th, 2007, 03:57 AM
Prayer as petition or bargaining...well, that certainly rings a bell. I was also brought up in a church-going Christian home. Bargaining attitude towards one's Deity sounds very disrespectful to me.
Another aspect that bothers me in casual prayer is, that it is often not much different from any casual thinking. One might ask things without really thinking of whether it is wise to ask those things.
Setting up a ritual marks prayer as something special to me, and enables me to pray with these thoughts nagging in the back of my head. For me, ritual is the time when I can open my mouth and talk to the Universe. Rest of the time, I think I am supposed to be quiet and to listen what the Universe has to say to me.
If *I* went on a silent monologue to Divine all day, how could it get a word (let alone any greater teaching) in?


If a pantheist considers All That Is to be holy, is ze then obligated to worship/reverence/pray to everything it contains? Is it OK to admit that, while all things may be holy, there are parts of that holiness that we don't like. Does excluding these things from the focus of our daily practice make that practice imbalanced or just pragmatic? I have opinions, of course (I have opinions on almost everything), but I'll hold onto them for a while to see if anyone else wants to chime in first.

Umm...I'll chime in, just to say that I am a little confused of my own practice. Maybe it is unbalanced in some way. On the other hand, I have asked myself, whether I truly believe that my religious task is to mirror the Universe and to care equally of the good and bad in it? I don't think that Universe cares much about anyone particular.
Or am I here with all my human capabilities because I am supposed to improve the Universe. Can we (humans) also be what passes for a conscience for the Universe? After all, the ability to tell good from bad, the ability to ask moral questions is human...so, it would seem that these are also questions that Universe may want to explore through us...
...and this is why I think (before I learn better), that my religious task is to uphold Light and to try to work as an agent of Light. Not because I believe that Light is strongest and will win in the end- I'm not sure if there is any big struggle going on at all. Not because I believe that I will ensure myself some reward that way. But just because I feel that is what I am supposed to do. Perhaps others serve the Universe equally well by being neutral, or even on the side of Dark. (I may not like the idea of, say, Hitler being a servant to All That Is, but such a possibility still exists).


For so long I compartmentalized my intellect away from my spirituality; how wonderful it is to now have a spirituality that encourages me to use my brain not just to think about weighty theological matters but truly to explore this world of ours!

If all is One in the Universe, why should different sides of us be kept apart? I have a major attitude problem with any religions that teach one to suppress natural human talents or abilities that one can use for self-development and for doing good to others. Human brain is a pretty amazing thing- I think it would be wasteful for one not to try to use the talents he has.
Exploration of atom, exploration of space, understanding life...Universe has made us capable of all this. It is possible that without us, this kind of exploration -conceptualized, intellectual exploration of the Universe- would be impossible. Expressing ones thoughts and emotions via painting or composing music...they are small miracles, really. After all, having thoughts and emotions are a far cry from being able to express them scientifically or artistically.
Even small-scale exploration starting from one's own kitchen or backyard is valuable, because it changes the explorer's thoughts, perhaps teaches her respect towards nature, improves her faculties of perception, helps her to become more knowledgeable and less ignorant etc. etc.


It calls on us to say, "Humans need to survive; other species and habitats need to survive. How can we get what we need without destroying it all or letting ourselves be destroyed?"

I believe that there is a balance, but that the society at large has not found it yet. I don't think that happiness is achieved by leading a lifestyle that is disastrous for others. Again: all things are one amd you can't separate one species from the whole.
We are beings capable of being responsible of our actions, capable of thinking with our own brain- moral beings. It seems to me, that if we put up that pity party and refuse to be responsible, we in fact deny part of ourselves- we make ourselves lesser beings than we were made to be.


I'm still trying to sort out what, exactly, my ethical code looks like. I know when I or someone else does something that runs counter to it, but I find it difficult to articulate. I'm glad to hear that's going better for you

Actually...I don't have an ethical code.:) In fact, I don't think ethics is about codes and rules at all (except perhaps "rules of thumb" that may tell us what is a good course of action in most cases).
For me, ethics is mostly about self improvement and trying to achieve true happiness. Yes, I'd say that if one wants to be happy it's probably best not to kill innocent people. But that's not a rule: it's in general a good idea, because killing innocent people is destructive, and possessing (exhibiting) that trait is bad in great many ways. For more information, check Aristotle's Nichomachean Ethics.

Ben & Jerry's sounds good. My grocery store doesn't carry Chunky Monkey...I guess I'll have to live with Cherry Garcia.:fprtyman3

Rosana
November 26th, 2007, 08:45 PM
Hello everyone!

It's been a looong time since I visited MW. I moved out of my parent's house this summer and started an independent life, with all its ups and downs, so my spiritual side became overshadowed by my practical self- you know, the one that is constantly occupied with errands, tasks, to-do lists and stuff like that. Lately I've felt an irresistible urge to acknowledge my spirituality once again and so here I am, reading hungrily all your responses.

At the present moment all I do to restore the connection between me and the world is being aware of my surroundings during walks. I plan to create a minimalistic seasonal altar (well, my winter one didn't satisfy my artistic tastes so it's been taken down ;)) and maybe just spend more time outdoors. I moved to a lovely neighbourhood, with vast green areas so I think it's time to get off my lazy self and use what I have.

I absolutely love your ideas, guys! Hope they help me a little bit with building a meaningful practice in the not so distant future :)

Wombat Boi
December 5th, 2007, 03:11 PM
I just wanted to say, Windsmith, that I think that list you posted earlier in the thread is so amazing.

I especially like this:

"Tea meditation: For my afternoon break, I make a small pot of tea. I sit and watch it brew. I know that sounds criminally boring, but I relish the inner quiet and the opportunity to recenter myself in the midst of my busy work day. Also, my tea set has 2 cups; I fill them both but only drink from one. If someone comes into my cube while I'm drinking, I offer them the other cup. It's a gesture of sacred hospitality and connectedness. If no one wants tea, I pour it out as a libation to the Earth, as a reminder that I don't have to consume everything in my path."

I wish there were more people out there willing to do things like this.

Windsmith
December 5th, 2007, 04:34 PM
I just wanted to say, Windsmith, that I think that list you posted earlier in the thread is so amazing.

I especially like this:

"Tea meditation: For my afternoon break, I make a small pot of tea. I sit and watch it brew. I know that sounds criminally boring, but I relish the inner quiet and the opportunity to recenter myself in the midst of my busy work day. Also, my tea set has 2 cups; I fill them both but only drink from one. If someone comes into my cube while I'm drinking, I offer them the other cup. It's a gesture of sacred hospitality and connectedness. If no one wants tea, I pour it out as a libation to the Earth, as a reminder that I don't have to consume everything in my path."

I wish there were more people out there willing to do things like this.Thank you so much, Boi o'the Wombats! I should confess that, due to changes in my schedule, this meditiation is now morning tea, rather than afternoon tea. The effect ends up subtly altered, because it's now a start to my day, rather than a mid-day touchpoint, but it's still incredibly important and effective for me.

Wombat Boi
December 5th, 2007, 04:45 PM
Either way the message that I get from it and what it must hold for you is very inspiring. I would like to do something similar, though my life definitely doesn't have enough structure right now. Everything is so chaotic.

I was trying to explain to my friend earlier this afternoon how people feel as though everything that is not directly consumed by them is wasted, and he wasn't understanding. He said, "Not drinking the tea isn't helping anyone." But I feel as though drinking the tea isn't helping anyone. None of us are starving or dying of thirst. Perhaps there's something in the earth that will benefit from it, certainly more than we would considering we have already had a cup of tea.

Windsmith
December 6th, 2007, 06:17 PM
I was trying to explain to my friend earlier this afternoon how people feel as though everything that is not directly consumed by them is wasted, and he wasn't understanding. He said, "Not drinking the tea isn't helping anyone." But I feel as though drinking the tea isn't helping anyone. None of us are starving or dying of thirst. Perhaps there's something in the earth that will benefit from it, certainly more than we would considering we have already had a cup of tea.Interesting outlook your friend has. After all, how does any religious activity "help anyone" besides the person performing the action? At least, that's my personal belief; I know that many others believe very differently. Not drinking the tea is helping someone. It's helping me. When I pour out the tea as a libation to the Earth instead of drinking it, I feel better about myself. I feel more connected. More responsible. And when I feel that way, I try to act in accordance with those feelings. I make better choices. I behave better towards those around me. What part of the world I have any sort of control over feels a little better. But it all began by helping only me.

By the way, Wombat Boi, welcome to the Pantheism threads. I'm glad you found your way over to us! Peek around (be sure to check out our FAQ (http://mysticwicks.com/showthread.php?t=159815)); make yourself to home; feel free to ask any questions that pop up for you.

cheddarsox
December 7th, 2007, 07:50 AM
When I toss feed/grain on the ground, and pour water on the earth the whole point for me, is that I am reminding myself where it came from, and who it belongs to...the universe...everything. Nothing is really mine, and nothing is wasted.

It is my way of living the truth, what is..that things are...and that they are not all about me, or my species, or my species and the particular other species we've formed an economic or emotional attachment to.

The universe is so much bigger than that.

I wrote a blog recently, about how many faiths are very egocentric...even their deity is "all about them".

pantheism is a process. The daily practice opens us more and more to the truth, to the awareness of what is. It is impossible to "get it" all at once.

Indeed, I think that many people's awareness is opened by things in their life, then they find pantheism and say "yes..of course"...the label comes after the awareness. Because it makes no sense to most people...they can't see it...just like WB's friend...it seems like so much foolishness to them.

*oonagh*
April 16th, 2009, 10:46 AM
breathing
when i breathe in i am taking the universe into myself
when i breathe out i give a bit of myself back to the universe

MoonBreath
September 26th, 2009, 02:10 AM
Being a pagan pantheist, i do draw a lot of inspiration from pagan themed imagery and invocations. For example, i love how the Charge of the Goddess and God express a connectedness to the elements and all aspects of the universe. I have various images of deities throughout my room melding with Nature, becoming one with the universe. I also have figurines of goddesses who are believed to preside over certain aspects of the world, and whose bodies make up Earth These archetypal images help me express myself and connect better with the world around me.

i'm personally not really big on ritual, sometimes i jokingly call myself a "lazy" pagan! :) i've never felt the need to conduct an elaborate one. My "ritual" revolves more around simply stepping outside of my house and really taking in the sights and smells of the natural world and reflecting on what it all means to me. Heck, watching Planet Earth episodes has the same effect! :) Also, reading certain writings can help put me in a PP state of mind! :)

SpiralDancing
December 31st, 2009, 09:04 AM
Have you ever heard of or considered having a "night garden"? There are certain plants that are their most beautiful at night, and some people undertake to create gardens of them that are intended to be visited in the dark instead of during the day.

I'd like to have one, someday...

Peace

Oh yes! I remember when i was a lot younger seeing a photo in a book of this, most of the plants were silver leaved and/or had white flowers, and in a full moon they looked spectacular! I was always incredibly intrigued with the idea... I've never planted one though... maybe oneday soon...

I've been reading this thread, and what amazing ideas everyone has!

I have 3 boys under 6 and I am a solo mum, so I find live gets REALLY hectic, and my spirituality has been suffering to be honest, the only thing I have been doing to keep me grounded lately is lots of gardening and tree planting and tending.

But I am realising that even the smallest gestures/rituals can be so meaningful if they are done mindfully, I will make sure I begin to incorporate some small things into my day :)

MrsLynch
October 31st, 2011, 02:59 PM
I have been reading this thread all morning now, just now (near lunch time) coming to its end. I am inspired by everyone's daily rituals, even those who do very little. I have been adrift in the sea of "anti-religion" for so long that I've forgotten how comforting ritual can be. Now that I'm realizing who I am and how my beliefs fit in I'll be able to be more comfortable and begin the little rituals to help me in my path. Thank you all that contributed to this post and inadvertently helping a Pantheist/Pagan noob like me out!

Katsbrain
November 3rd, 2011, 07:37 AM
I have been adrift in the sea of "anti-religion" for so long that I've forgotten how comforting ritual can be.

I understand entirely! For a while, I was positively sick of religion and felt the world would be better off without it, but it was a miserable time for me. I was letting other people define god and spirituality, rather than using my own faculties and my own brain to find out for myself.