It’s been a while since I’ve done a Spiritual Saturday post, but there was a conversation recently in one of the Facebook communities I’m a member of that prompted me to put my own thoughts together. The question was asked (after a rather snarky post by several other members in relation) if we believed that the Gods reached out and actively sought relationships with humans. The general consensus within that community was that the Gods do not seek out relationships with humans and couldn’t care less if humans sought them out.
I didn’t share within that community, as I am more of an observer there, but the question has been brewing in my mind since that day and as I’ve watched a few more answers added as others have come online and seen it. But the lady that posted the question spoke many of my own thoughts – mostly the surprise that a community based around a devotional, living religion had such dismissive views of the interactions between the Gods and humans. So, let me answer the question for you all now.
Yes, I do believe that the Gods can and do actively seek relationships with we lowly humans. I do not see the Gods as some unreachable entity so far above humanity as to be unconcerned with them. In part, I have this belief because when I was little more than a child, I called out and They responded. Danu and, in time, an’Dagda came to a child crying in the woods for something greater than herself, for someone to care about her in a way she felt no one else cared at the time – particularly Deity. They led me, directed my studies, and encouraged me by Their presences. And, when I finally reached a level of maturity that I was ready, They led me to my other Gods – my current teachers and mentors, Brighid and Manannan; and Lir, who still hasn’t revealed Himself more to me than a desire that I acknowledge and honor Him.
Many of those who dissented in the above group said that they found their connections to the local land spirits and their ancestors much more important. And in a way, I can understand this. The fae who in part inhabit our home have always been a constant part of my practice and once (before I let my practice fall by the wayside) I interacted with them on a more constant basis than I did with my Gods. I’m still coming to terms with ancestor and hero veneration, though it is increasingly something that is important to me – taking time to acknowledge those who have passed and those who lived lives of glory and honor. But it’s a learning curve that has been made more difficult by my recent apathy for practice.
But to completely dismiss an active relationship with my Gods as being too “new age” and somehow trying to be “special” baffles me. I don’t think I am special because my Gods wish for me to honor Them. No more than the hundreds of others who have been drawn to the Tuatha. But I think saying that They don’t care if They are acknowledged or worship dismisses the fact that when They could have chosen to abandon this world to the humans, They chose to remain, at least in part, to have a relationship with humanity. They chose to inspire the stories we have of Them that we might know Them and learn from Them. Does that sound like someone who doesn’t care about humanity and a relationship with humans? Not to me.
Most importantly, though, is the fact that I have a relationship with my Gods. Even when my practice fell to near non-existence, I have a relationship with beings that seek to bring forth the best within me, if I but put forth the effort to apply the lessons They give me. Do I believe that They turn Their attentions from all others to focus on me? Don’t be ridiculous. My Gods are not so tiny. My Gods are mighty. And through Them, and with Them, so shall I be.