Thursday, April 13, 2023

Becoming Like Fire

 It’s spring in Rochester, and I’m celebrating by planning updates to the shrine. First came the cleaning of the space. The little animals that I share the shrine with were busy last week and had distributed all of the dog bones that sit on Hekate’s plinth hither and yon. I collected them all and replaced them after cleaning the top of the pillar.

I’m planning to add more pavers to the path on the way from the breach in the bushes that serves as the door to the shrine to the concrete pad. Also, I’ll clear out the brush a bit and plant some shade-friendly ground cover on the inside of the grove.

More seriously, there is a massive forsythia bush inside that is about half dead and desperately needs trimmed.

As things green up, I’m considering a birdbath away from the statues as a relief for the animals as well as a scrying surface.

A dear friend and I were talking recently about devotional work as the engine to magical work, and he gave me a tidbit from the Desert Fathers:

Abba Lot came to Abba Joseph and said: Father, according as I am able, I keep my little rule, and my little fast, my prayer, meditation and contemplative silence; and, according as I am able, I strive to cleanse my heart of thoughts: now what more should I do? The elder rose up in reply and stretched out his hands to heaven, and his fingers became like ten lamps of fire. He said: Why not become fire?

In my mostly monastic existence, I find a lot of comfort in this particular quotation. My shrine work would be called by Christians “faith in action,” in that it’s something I can DO to become fire. After all, this is what we want the gods to help us do, isn’t it?

Blessed be thou.

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