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Wren Wrants A-Z ...

A Letter To My Daughter

A PumkinHead in the White House

A Real Bad Day For Witchcraft

A Real Reason To Vote

A Time for War, a Time for Peace and a Time to Browse the Bookstore

A Wonderful Piece of News

The Aftermath of Columbine High School

Beating A Not-So-Hasty Retreat

Behind Enemy Lines

Breakfast Will Be Served In Fifteen Minutes...

Building a Circle of Trust

But What Will People Think?

By Their Furniture, Ye Shall Know Them

Caution: Restricted Area

Cleaning Out The Junk Drawer

Community Power Who Holds it?

Community Thoughts on Tempest Smith

Compelling without the Yelling

Confessions of a News Junkie

The Consistancy of Change...


Coping with Grief

Cramming It Down Our Throats...

Damned if you do and Damned if you don't

Declaring Your Personal Independence Day

Did Your World Change Too?

Dreaming in The Dark...

There is No Zuul

There's a Rabbit In The Moon...

Excavating the Dinosaur Altar

Fair Use, Copyright and the Pagan Net

Feeding Our Young

The First Day

Gather 'Round The Fire

Getting Back To Nature

Getting Back To Normal

Getting Rid of What Bugs You

Gifts That Keep On Giving...

The Giving Circle

Gods In A China Shop...

Good And Evil: In The Shadow Of Littleton And The Garden Of The Gods.

Good Will Toward Men

The Great Hamster Myth

Happy Beltaine!

Happy Brigid's Day Everyone!

The Heart of A Mechanic

Helping Hands

Helping Our Own

Hidden Hatred Haunts Pagans

Home is Where the Spirit Is

Homosexuality and Public Policy

The Household of Priests and Priestesses

If The Hissy Fits

In A Mirror Darkly...

In Your Dreams

The Internet Reaches beyond Washington

It All Happens Locally

It Is Your Destiny

It's Maypole Week 'Round the World

It's Tribal Time!

January Arrives Wearing A White Coat

Judging Amy -- Wren's Thoughts

Killed a Goat Today

Knot Charming

Learning How To Fly

Life With Mikey

Listening To The Story

Listening To The Woods

Living In A Banana Republic

Living Through A Drought

Logging On and Speaking Out!

The Long and Short Of It

The Love of Ordinary Things

Mabon... a Man for all Seasons

Magick's Arrow

Mamas, Don't let your Babies...

The Media Story Is Often Not The True One

Mercury Has Left the Building

Minding Your News P's and Q's

Mixed Blessings

NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.

Living Through A Drought

Author: Wren
Posted: June 4th. 2001
Times Viewed: 7,840

Greetings Witches, Wiccans and Pagans,

This morning, the trip down to the little pond was like walking into a brand new world. Nothing much had really changed. As Wren tossed the breadcrumbs along the shoreline for the seagulls and the turtles, behind her the pigeons and squirrels were already devouring the seeds and the blue jays were looting the peanuts as quickly as their blue bandito wings would carry them. The Moor Hen and her Little Chick cruised along the shoreline looking for the entire world like a human family out for a stroll in the park. But something -something important-HAD changed. Yesterday, the rains came.

Florida and other parts of the country have been experiencing a drought. After four years of below average rainfall, our part of the state has a rain deficit of almost three feet. Fires are sparking up everywhere and water restrictions are in place. Florida is in a state of emergency. Every person and animal and fish and bird is affected. Life seems dry and dusty and brittle.

People who have embarked upon a spiritual quest can experience a 'drought as well. In fact, at some point it is almost certain that they will. What once was new and alive and exciting suddenly becomes a burden, a duty, and an obligation. Where once one rushed excitedly to each new coven meeting or public gathering, one's feet now drag all the way up the drive. Rituals seem empty and hollow and pointless. Just like the leaves on the drought-stricken willow tree, the spiritual life that once fluttered with vitality now hangs listless and limp. It is at this point that many Pagans may decide to turn back. They may once again return to a previously practiced religion. They may try another 'flavor' of Paganism hoping to rekindle some enthusiasm. They may attend every workshop within miles or retreat from all of the activities and connections that they once so enjoyed. They feel 'dried out' with nothing left to give. They feel as though somehow they have 'failed' or that the Gods have abandoned them.

They give up. They give up because they feel now that all of their previous ecstatic experiences must have been simply an illusion. They give up because they believe-in their drought-stricken heart of hearts-that they have made no spiritual progress at all. They give up because it has become so very, very obvious that this is not the right path for them. And they would be so very, very mistaken. It is at this very point-the place where the raging drought has burned up everything living within-that the most wondrous of transformations can occur.

Spiritual drought is not an unknown marker in the spiritual lives of other cultures or in the ancient religions of mankind. Indeed, the making of a new shaman often required a profound emotional, physical or psychological crisis. In the ancient Greek religions, the mystery schools often brought the new blindfolded initiate to a psychological crisis by subjecting the seeker to certain unexpected -and by our standards, often horrifying- encounters with strange noises, sensations or experiences. One either survived a 'night alone in the pyramid/barrow/cave' and then emerged as a genuine initiate--or one went mad. 'Going mad' is a thought that often crosses the mind of someone in a spiritual drought. It is part of the process. It is part of the initiation into a different way of being. There is no way to avoid the process if one is to truly advance on a spiritual path. No matter which religion or path you run off to in the hope of escape, if one is serious about developing one's spirituality (and not just going through the motions), it will track you down. It must be confronted. It must be endured. It will happen to everyone who sincerely strives to become a spiritually aware being. And it always sucks big time. Always.

Some Pagans have been through this process. More Pagans-because so many have entered the various Pagan Paths within the last five years-will soon be approaching that 'season of drought'. Lucky are those who have teachers or Priests/Priestesses who have experienced such a crisis themselves and can guide them through such a process. For those who follow a solitary path or do not have someone nearby who has already endured the 'dark night of the soul', it can be a very difficult and confusing time. For those, Wren would suggest two excellent books on the subject: 'The Stormy Search For Self' (updated as Spiritual Emergency) by Christina and Stanislav Grof and 'Ordinary People as Monks and Mystics' by Marsha Sinetar. It does help to hear someone say that you're not crazy. Wren can say, "You are not crazy'. She's been through it herself. She survived. You will too.

And as Wren walks back across the grassy grounds, the air is sparkling with moisture and the smell of wet earth wipes itself on her nose. The leaves on the willow bounce about on the small breeze like tiny pointed flags raised in celebration. The squirrels resemble damp frumpy little men who have been interrupted halfway through their bath and beads of dew perch upon blades of grass like so much carefully restored otherworld jewelry.

The drought is far from over. It will take several more months of steady rains for the land to become lush again and several more years of that before the underground aquifers are replenished. But yesterday, hope came down from the sky and kissed the land. Faith and endurance received their rewards. Don't give up. What you seek is seeking you. Maybe it will come today and if not today, then maybe tomorrow. But the rain WILL come. It always does.

The Witches' Voice Inc.

Anchor Photo: Although our preference would have been to place a powerful "drought image" in this position... We simply could not find one in time... This shot is a fave from the past and was taken in Salem, Mass in 1994 by Fritz during the filming of a TV special on Witchcraft for the Learning Channel Network. We don't own this expensive wand (borrowed for the shot) but believe it may be a Waterhawk piece.

Article Specs

Article ID: 4514

VoxAcct: 1

Section: wrenwalker

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 6,811

Times Read: 7,840



Location: Tampa, Florida

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