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Magickal Path: Gnostic Pagan - Shamanic Path
Age Group: Adult
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Occupation: Mental Health Counselor
Relationship Status: Separated
Sexual Orientation: Straight
Located in: Cody, Wyoming
Likes: Spiritual sovereignty, creativity, and growth.
Dislikes: Stagnation and oppression.
The following is a paraphrased excerpt from my book, Ancestral Coalescence: All You Seek Shall Be Found Within (available on Amazon Kindle) :
If asked to summarize my personal spiritual structure, I would have to say I am a Gnostic Pagan following a Shamanic path. Foremost, I am Shaman. Being Gnostic refers to the philosophical filters through which I view my “reality” – my spiritual attitude toward a Pagan lifestyle.
Though the three terms have unfortunately come to carry religious overtones, I must stress this is not my intention. “Religion” tends to conjure thoughts of servitude and worship; institutionalized belief systems and practices; and dogmatic, ritualized reverence to some distant force.
Being an Evolving Shaman encompasses four basic levels of definition for me. Experiencing life as a “walker of the worlds” is the first defining characteristic I will touch on here. The ability to negotiate the human experience with one foot in the mundane plane and one foot in the astral is an art critical to a productive Shamanic path. Being able to “see, ” “hear, ” and “feel” on multiple levels is a double-edged gift, to say the least. I have questioned my definitions of “sanity” many times.
A second defining characteristic of the Shamanic path is that of being a “wounded healer.” The experience of traversing the sometimes intense lessons life has to offer adds to the Shaman’s ability to mentor those seeking to “heal thySelf.” Personally, I have found it more ethically conducive to Natural Law to teach seekers to heal themselves, rather than offering to do it for them. The value of teaching a man to fish is truly evident here.
Thirdly, a Shamanic path includes the responsibility of being a “wisdom keeper.” Personally, I identify with being a repository and assimilator of information. My research skills with both the mundane and the astral are richly tuned and a very good source of fulfillment. This book contains both researched and astrally received information along with personal experience.
And finally, “evolving” indicates the ability to readily adapt to current and future shifts in the paradigm and to not remain fixed or stagnant within tradition or dogma. Certainly, a traditional foundation is useful wisdom on which to base a shamanic path. But it can easily restrict the growth necessary to effectively meet the challenges put forth during the journey of revealing and plant the seeds of change required for our awakening and spiritual evolution. We are each our own Shaman. All in varying stages of evolving.
For me, identifying myself as Pagan encompasses the ideals of a nature-centered approach to my magickal relationship with Source and a distinction from all religious systems including, but not limited to: Buddhism, Vedic/Hinduism which supports the practice of Transcendental Meditation, and especially the Abrahamic religious triad (Judaism, Muslim, and Christianity – particularly anything pertaining to the Demiurge, angelic/demonic hierarchy) . If it has anything to do with guilt, shame, retribution, power, or control it has no place in my world. "Buddha was not a Buddhist, Jesus was not a Christian, and Muhammad was not a Muslim."
Even many of the off shoots of Neo-Paganism and Neo-Druidism resulting in the worship and servitude of an external God/Goddess energy form have not eluded my scrutiny. This includes the latest spiritual distortion – the so called New Age Movement. Their glittering lures of various “love and light” jargon is as dangerous as all the others combined. I have come to call this the New Cage Movement.
My path is extremely eclectic, meaning I borrow from many philosophies and traditions. I have grown to prefer the basic tenets of the more nature-based, low magick traditions and fondly refer to myself as a “hedge witch.” This is to say I tend to lean toward the practical, down-to-earth forms of magick as compared to the intermediate forms which focus on the laws of humans in the microcosm and the high forms which focus on the universal laws of the macrocosm. I am comfortable within all three levels as needs warrant, but seem more at ease with low magick. “High” and “low” are not value terms, but are better viewed as levels of vibration – a preferred frequency, if you will.
Quite a bit has been written on Gnosticism as a religion, particularly Christian Gnosticism. A few adventurous researchers have ventured to link Gnosticism to pre-Christian Mystery Schools. While I agree certain sects have claimed Gnostic inspiration, I view Gnosis as more of an attitude rather than a dogmatic religion. I have also come to understand Gnostic thought as originating from the obscure, pre-Christian wisdoms.
It is extremely unfortunate that massive knowledge in many areas has fell victim to numerous bouts of censorship and distortion over the generations, this being but one. The word “Gnosis” is of Greek origin and literally means “divine intelligence, ” “cosmic-creative mind, ” or “intellect.” Gnosis is the result of our relationship to nous, the rational part of the individual human soul. It is simply the intuitive and instinctual inner voice many of us need to retune our Spirits to and learn to trust once again.
Note: If you've made it to the end of this introduction you might like to check out a new website I am creating where kindred can collaborate. Not only is spiritual sovereignty important, but so too is solidarity. We are only as strong as our combined effort and this site is one means to create that. Please join us in the public forum and send your thoughts, ideas, and comments. The site is intended to be a group effort and your insight is valuable. www.soultribesanctuary.net
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