An Update, and a Magical Day

25 Ceres

Dear readers,

Before I begin I would like to inform you all I have taken the spiritual name Madria Gwenevere, but you can all still refer to me as Madria Erin or Erin. You can also call me Gwenevere or hey, even just Gwen. Whatever feels most comfortable. 🙂

It’s been far too long! I can only apologise. I really have no excuse, other than lethargy due to depression. I have been particularly miserable for the past couple of weeks, for reasons I won’t go in to. But yesterday, I experienced some of the most amazing spiritual experiences I have ever had, and I wanted to share them with you.

Note: this next paragraph might be slightly triggering to some as I mention self harm and suicide ideation.

I hadn’t slept an inch. I’d spent the majority of the night thinking about death and hating myself. I felt incredibly lonely. Lately it seems like my friends no longer need me and I am not relevant to their lives, as they move out of their parents’ homes, find love, graduate from university, find decent jobs. Because of my mental health and sheer bad luck, none of those things have panned out for me. I truly felt like a waste of space. I had to draw on my arms and write messages of hope to stop myself from self harming, or worse. I tried to get to sleep around 5am and couldn’t. So I made the decision then that I’d get up, get a shower, get dressed and go on an adventure. That way I could spend some time in nature to think about things, get some much needed exercise & reset my sleeping pattern.

Here’s how my day went. Not all of it is related to Deanism, some of it is just about me realizing I can spend time by myself and rely on myself & Dea for emotional fulfilment.

1. I got the bus in to the city centre & got a McDonalds breakfast.

2. I went to Starbucks & got a hazelnut hot chocolate.

3. I took photographs of my poetry that’s currently being displayed as part of an LGBT Pride exhibition. It was an incredibly proud moment.

4. I bought a small bottle of wine to offer up to Dea, a sandwich, and some nuts.

5. I got the train to a National Trust site (red squirrel conservation park & beach) which is only about twenty minutes from my city by train.

6. I found a spot in the forest that called to me. As soon as I sat down I was filled with such overwhelming joy. I started laughing to myself and couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. A few minutes after I sat down, I realized there were about six squirrels running around. I began feeding the nuts to them, and they kept inching closer and closer to me. They looked directly at me. It was so magical. I almost cried.

7. I poured the wine out to Dea, said a few prayers, and did some automatic writing where I got some wonderful messages from perhaps my spirit guide, fairies, or messenger spirits/angels. I read scripture, and as soon as I opened them I landed on a passage that was extremely relevant, which I will go in to later. I sat there for about an hour and a half. Now, it may have been a trick of the light, or hallucinations due to sleep deprivation, but I swear I saw fairies. Small flying specks of light zooming past at incredible speeds.

8. I walked further in to the woods. Eventually I found an area with tonnes of blackberry bushes that were just starting to ripen. I started picking some. A sweet lady with a beautiful dog walked by who was also foraging and we spoke for about five minutes about nature and foraging and she gave me a bag. I was there picking for about an hour.

9. I walked further in, then found a spot in a clearing to sit and eat my sandwich.

10. I then decided to go to the beach, which I wasn’t going to because I was wearing doc martens (the weather reports had all said rain, but the sun was shining). I just took them off and walked over, and in order to avoid the sand dunes I had to go the long way which was taking a while, so I sat on a bench to read poetry for about half an hour.

11. I started walking again, and on the way to the beach I found some wild flowers (mostly bluebells) and put them in my hair.

12. Eventually I got to the beach. I rolled up my jeans and took off my shoes and carried them with me to the ocean, where I stood just feeling the waves on my legs for about half an hour. I prayed, and I was filled with such an overwhelming sense of “God is real! Love is real! Everything is going to be okay.” I contemplated the healing powers of water, and the name ‘Mari’. It means sea, but it also means Mother. I thought about my patron Jana, Lady Grace, and how She is the Jana of the sea. I felt her presence and Her motherly energies so strongly. I actually recorded a video of me talking to the Deanic community, but I am incredibly paranoid about my accent and my voice in general, so I don’t know if I’ll upload it yet.

13. Deciding I should be heading back because I was feeling very tired at this point, I decided to head back to my city. I got slightly lost on the way out, but I wasn’t worried, and eventually found the train station. There were planter boxes there, urging people to take the crops when they were grown, so I took some rosemary.

14. Back in my city, I decided I didn’t want to go home yet. Realizing how unclean my clothes were, though, I had to go and buy a cheap tshirt and jeans to change in to.

15. Originally I was planning on just getting something to eat and then going home, but just as I was about to leave I made the last minute decision to see a movie. I watched ‘Valerian’, a new sci-fi movie that has been getting awful reviews, but I enjoyed it quite a lot. I’d never been to the movie theatre myself before, and was feeling quite nervous about it, since I thought I’d look pathetic. I realized I wasn’t the only one doing so, though, and quickly realized I was being silly.

16. At that point it was time to go home. When I got home I cleaned my berries and shared them with my sister. I’m not a big fan of fruit but they were delicious and I think the fact that I’d picked them myself helped me enjoy them more.

17. I showered, and crawled in to bed and prayed, thanking Dea for blessing me with such an amazing day, and an amazing testimony that She definitely exists, and She definitely loves me, and all of us. I fell asleep with a smile on my face.

I know the world is terrifying right now, both on a universal scale and a personal scale. We each have our own personal struggles with mental health, physical health, financial issues, family issues etc, and then to top it all off it seems we can’t go a day lately without the threat of nuclear war or terrorism looming over us. But despite all of this, the struggles of this world are nothing compared to the giant, perfect, wonderful reality that is our Heavenly Mother. I mentioned earlier that I selected a random scripture passage, and it was incredibly relevant to this.

“Like a play is to thy life, and the acting of mummers; like to a painted scene all the things of the world. The things of thy life and its acts and its purposes; where shall they be in an hundred score years from this day? Yet an hundred score years are no more than a breath in the measureless life of thy soul.”

– Pillar of Light 36-17

All of your pain is temporary. All of the worlds’ pains are temporary. Because your soul is immortal. The soul of the world, which is of Dea Herself, is immortal. This isn’t to say that your pain isn’t real and it doesn’t matter, or that we ought to ignore the issues in our world at the moment. We should continue to look after ourselves and one another, and do whatever we can to make this existence as painless as possible to all of us. But what I’m saying is that on an eternal scale, we need never fear oblivion. Oblivion does not exist. Kind of weird to wrap your head around, right? Non-existence does not exist.

Lastly, I’d like to share some passages of automatic writing I channeled from an entity or entities I feel were probably angels or fairies yesterday, while sitting between the trees and watching squirrels. Some of it was slightly all over the place so I’ve tidied up the spelling and grammar.

“Do you hear that? That’s the sound of our Lady’s great servants at work! For every plant, tree, animal has its purpose.”

“The laws of Heaven are written in nature. Hearken! She is speaking to you. She is always speaking to you.”

“Oh, how our Lady loves Her squirrels! They are light and buoyant. They can hop and skip and glide. In Heavenly realms, maids have this ability also. In higher spears, Maid is light as a feather- Nay, lighter.”

“In the realms of Truth, no animal fears maid and maid fears no animal. All are in perfect harmony.”

That’s all from me for now, but I’ll try to keep this blog updated. I truly do adore each and every one of you who reads my little ramblings. Thank you.

In the name of the Mother, the Daughter, and Absolute Deity,
Blessed is She.

– Madria Gwenevere.

(P.s. I recently watched Disney’s Moana, and without spoilers, the ending held a lot of spiritual meaning to me, so I made it the featured image)

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Daily Spiritual Practices

14 Vaskaras 3336

Hello,

In our very busy day-to-day lives, it can be hard to make time for Dea. Most Deanists will say a little prayer at night and perhaps in the morning, but understandably, we often fail to pray, listen to Her or call on Her any other time of the day (other than on feast days). I am awful for this. Some days I’m even too busy and stressed that I feel like I don’t have the energy to pray, but ironically, those are the days I need Dea the most.

Many Deanists have written prayers that are to be said multiple times a day, facing certain directions, calling on various mysteries, etc. I would love to be able to do that, but for some people a system like that just isn’t possible. So, I’m in the process of coming up with little spiritual practices that can be done throughout the day without taking up too much time and getting us in trouble with our bosses etc.

  • Morning Prayer: In the morning, welcome in the dawn with light ring of a bell. This will clear negative energies from your aura and help you call in the Spirit. Make the pentacle or fora or another holy symbol upon yourself. Morning prayer may just be petitioning Dea to help you walk through the day as She would, being a mirror of Her grace and love, and thanking Her for the new day.
  • Grace Before Meals: When in public, praying before meals can cause feelings of anxiety. In this day and age doing so may make those around you view you as some sort of ‘religious nut’ and they may make assumptions about you and what you believe. A Mormon missionary once told me that when in public around non-Mormons, he does what he calls a ‘migraine prayer’, crossing your hands over his slightly bowed head to silently thank God for his meal. I like this approach a lot.
  • Images of Dea: I can’t remember where I read this but I know one Deanic website (possibly Mother-G0d) suggests bowing before statues of Mary etc as they are representations of Dea. I ADORE this, but for the reasons I touched on above, this can be hard to do for many people. Instead, consider bowing your head and greeting Her silently to yourself, or simply put your fingers to your lips and extend your hand towards her, as a symbol of reverent love.
  • Head Covering: Many Pagans, Goddess worshippers and a few Deanists cover their heads as a sign of devotion to the Divine. I cover during ritual and the month of Moura. Head covering doesn’t have to be a large veil covering all of the hair, it can simply be a wide headband or a hat.
  • Listening: Most of us are familiar with the concept of prayer. It’s when you talk to Dea. But when was the last time you listened to Her? Sometimes we get so caught up in the world around us that we forget that through the Daughter, Dea is an imminent and active force in our lives. In the silence, through music, by reading scriptures, we can hear Her voice. She can give us counsel, comfort, and advise us on day to day issues.
  • Daily Scripture: Not all Deanists use the Filianic/Madrian scriptures, but for those that do, simply reading a passage a day and meditating on it is a great spiritual practice. Simply pick one at random and think about what it means to you as you go about your day. Deanic Christians may use the Bible, Gnostic Deanists may use the Nag Hammadi scriptures, etc.
  • Night Time prayer: Unless we have had a particularly busy day, night time may be a time we can spend a little longer communing with Dea. Light candles at your altar, say longer prayers, pray the rosary. I like to stand at my altar, light candles, pray and then sit in the silence and take deep breaths, letting Her calm me before I sleep. I imagine Her singing me to sleep and wrapping me in a warm blanket like an earthly mother would with her little child. I find this helps a lot with my insomnia.

I really hope this helps, and I’d love to hear about your spiritual, every day practices!

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Madria Erin

The Future of Deanism

13 Vaskaras 3336

I am so sorry for the lack of posts on this blog as of yet! I’ve been busy, and there is still unfinished business in my life I need to take care of (nothing serious but still) so I may not be very active for a while, but I wanted to finally make my first post on here since moving from DaughterOfDea.

There is another reason I have been so inactive in Deanic circles lately.

Like many, I sometimes feel hopeless and worry that our religion has no real future. It is very, very hard to start a religion in this day and age. We are at a point where in society where people do not want religion, and not without reason. Religion has done a lot of harm. Those who do like the idea of being religious tend to want to join older, established ones rather than new ones. They want on-the-grounds communities that will give them a job and a purpose. They want easily accessible resources and a solid theological basis.

This makes Deanism inaccessible for some people. When people ask me about my religion, I find it hard to direct them to resources they will understand. Most of the Deanic resources are from the Daughters of Shining Harmony/Aristasians, and while I do love the Mother-God website, it can be hard for people to distinguish which is simple Deanic thealogy and which is Aristasian. While I personally like some of the Aristasian teachings, there is a lot I disagree with. As a third wave feminist I find some of their gender politics in conflict with my own beliefs, and I also envision Deanism as being a religion for all, not just hyperfeminine women.

However, I refuse to give up hope for the future of this small religious tradition.

I use social media to post about Deanism as well as other things in my life (my day to day activities, my interests such as books and video games, activism, etc) and this has lead to me informing others about the faith without even realising it. In the past few weeks I have seen about three of my Tumblr followers begin to identify as Deanists, and that makes me absolutely overjoyed. People are interested in this faith because it offers something they haven’t seen before. I receive quite a few messages on Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter from people who are interested in learning more. And while it can be quite hard to find appropriate resources and explain new thealogical concepts sometimes, it’s totally worth it.

I will continue to teach of Dea’s love to all those who want to know it. I will teach my children of Dea, but if they grow up and want to join a different religion or none at all, that will be okay, too. And I will carry on praying to Her, worshipping Her, and loving Her.

Madria Erin