Sunday, April 4, 2010

Who I Am

OK, introductions time! As I already said most, if not all of you know me well enough but I think this is needed.

My chosen nickname is Alorer. I am 19 years old (soon to be on April 19th) and a Greek. I live in Athens. I've been involved with Paganism and the Occult for about 5 years now.

Here's my spiritual and religious progress: baptised as a toddler like the vast majority of Greeks, I grew up as a Greek Orthodox Christian. However, my mother being atheist and my father (although his influence was miniscule since my parents divorced when I was still 9-10 years old) believing in some sort of higher power as well as the fact that my family is largely secular and non-religious save for my devout grandma (who mind this, never pushed her religion on us - the family and relationships in Greece differ greatly from the US and other countries - here most parents won't mind if their mothers/mothers-in-law take their kids to church or whatever) made it so I was never very religious. My familial environment was (and still is) also highly paranormal-friendly (I really can't call it in any other way), meaning things such as energy, spirits, "psychic abilities" and such were not only accepted but embraced. My mother frequently commented and still does so, on how sensitive I always was. So, I got into Paganism and the Occult (especially the Occult) with already established "foundations".

At the age of 12, I started questioning and doubting much of Christianity (note that in Greece all schools are obliged to teach a religious course, which for nearly all years of school, primary and high, deals with Christianity and specifically Orthodox Christianity almost exclusively). This resulted in my rejection and "departure" from its midst (not that my family or I were much involved, again with the exception of my grandma). For a few months I was "wandering" since I didn't feel drawn to anything I knew religious-wise. While trying to find a fitting path, I contemplated on what I believe in and decided I do believe in a higher power of sorts but I do not have a name or figure for it. Later on, I learnt that was called "agnosticism".

Around the age of 13, I finally found a footing, something I could use and research for: the ancient Greek religion. Frustrated by the complete lack of any sort of details in school books and curriculum as well as in my own books, I turned to the Internet. Pretty quickly I found info on Gods and celebrations far more detailed than the sketchy, fairytale-like descriptions in school books. That lead to me finding Greek Reconstructionism and although I never considered myself a Recon, I did approach the Pantheon of my ancestors. Additionally, I approached some of the Egyptian deities in their hellenized forms (e.g. Thoth as opposed to Tehuti).

As time went by, I ended up disappointed and disheartened by the attitude, behaviour and some of the views of the Greek Recons I was reading and researched about. That led to me leaving Hellenic Polytheism as well, at least as far as naming and identification went. I maintained a relationship with my Gods (mostly Athena, Apollo and Artemis - the relationships in this point were quite impersonal and "professional"-only).

Now comes the "juicy" part (hehe). This might make you laugh or drop your jaw in surprise but it's true and it's the reason I am here writing this today, no matter how silly it sounds. I thought about researching this "Wicca" thing I heard mentioned in Charmed a couple of times as well as whether Magic truly exists (as I said I already had foundations in paranormal/occult beliefs and fields such as energy, what it is, how some use it, spirits etc). I have to say I never really doubted the old cunning folk (well, as far as the Greek equivalent can be called that based on the similarities and linguistic approach) and I always thought people could "do stuff". So, research got me more than I bargained or ever hoped for. It fit so utterly that I was dazed. I researched more and more deeply and began studying.

And this takes us to my mid-fifteens. After taking up the label of Eclectic Wiccan and joining a little community called "WiccanTogether", I considered that my path truly started unfolding. As time passed, I dropped the Wiccan aspect (mostly thanks to the education provided by the discussions with my beloved Trad Wiccans - you know who you are, little Elders :P ) and began identifying as an Eclectic Pagan Witch. This is the name for my path I go by for a little more than 2 years now.

And with reaching this crucial point in my little story, I'll end this post. In the next one, I'll discuss my path itself as it is now.

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