Devotion – Developing Relationship with Deity

Devotion is defined as: religious fervor or piety, a religious exercise or practice, and also the act of dedicating something to a cause, enterprise, or activity. We can be devoted to our families, to our work in the world. We can be devoted to a lover. We can be devoted to the Godds, our personal Godds, our Divine Beloveds.

A note: I like using the spelling of Godds because it feels more inclusive of all genders of Deity, so know that this is an intentional spelling, thank you Urania for showing me that option.

Part of my work in the world is introducing folks to Deity. I love stories of the Godds, I love getting to meet them, and learn from them. I love helping to introduce folks to a Godd that they may never have heard of before and I love seeing a new relationship grow and develop. I love seeing a Godd touch someone and know that a bond has been formed. Relationships with Divinity are the most rewarding relationships to have.

For me when it comes to my Godds, devotion looks a very particular way. And I’m sure that’s true for anyone who considers themselves a polytheist. But it’s more than just what *I* might think or feel or believe. In my devotion, I must be open to my Godds. I listen to what they ask for, what they want, what they tell me or suggest. And this is a negotiation. Because our relationships with Divinity are just that, relationships.

Baba Yaga might want me to run away into the woods to escape into nature. She might make it very clear that I need to do that thing right now. However, in that moment I’m at work, which pays my bills, and I can’t just leave to head out into the woods. Running into the woods might be what is best for me, that might be what I need, and ignoring her message may cost me in ways I don’t fully understand, but that’s the way that it has to be. No matter what, I’m human with human responsibilities, no matter how devoted I am to her, those responsibilities need to be taken into consideration.

Your Godds may “get it” (on some level), the Godds know we are human, they understand that human is different, but just like we can’t fully comprehend what it is to be a Godd or to be Fae, They in turn, can’t fully understand what it is to be human.

When someone has behaved badly, broken their vows, or otherwise caused drama and their response is, “the Goddess made me do it” they are full of shit. We always have agency. We always get to have our opinion. We always have choice. Always.

I get it, when the Goddess taps you, when you get your marching orders, when you get a clear vision of what you should be doing it can be hard to ignore or negotiate. And the Godds have a tendency to get louder the longer we push them off, but you always have free will.

In the workshops I offer connecting folks to Goddesses, I often get asked, “ok, we clicked, now what?” In the spirit of developing a devotional practice, here is what I recommend for opening a new relationship with a new (to you) Godd.

  • Learn About Them – Do your homework, read books, websites, blogs, and historical documentation. Learn about the culture they came from. What was that culture like when they were in the height of worship? What is that culture like now? What are their stories and who wrote them down?
  • Create an Altar – Yes, it is that simple. Create a sacred space, just for them. Spend time in/at this space. Give them offerings (you will know what they want from your extensive research and study).
  • Open to Their Voice – When you spend time at their shrine you will start to learn what their voice sounds like. Be open to learn, listen, and devote. This can take time. This can be a frustrating experience. This can also be easy and beautiful. No matter what your first experiences might be, keep going. This is one of those times that you have to push past boredom, fear, worry, or “nothing happening”.
  • Do Rituals in Their Honor – Whether you pull rituals from other sources or make them up on your own, performing rituals expresses your devotion and allows for more intimate one-on-one time with your Godd. Learn their ancient holy days (or modern ones) and perform rituals on these days.

Overtime I have come to discover that my Godds are just as devoted to me as I am to them. We have a relationship. We are in relationship. And just like human relationships, they take work. We work together to strengthen our bonds to each other.

About the Author

Phoenix LeFae is equal parts blue eyed wanderer and passionate devotee of the Goddess. She is a restless seeker of knowledge, always yearning to learn more, dig deeper, and dive into mystery. Phoenix suffers from the whims of her Divine muse (or perhaps muses), and in that suffering experiences a joy that manifests in writing, ritual, teaching, and devotion. Her first Reclaiming ritual was Winter Solstice 1995 and she's been hooked ever since. An initiate in Reclaiming, the Avalon Druid Order, and Gardnerian Wicca, Phoenix has had the pleasure of teaching and leading ritual globally. She is a hoodoo practitioner, a professional witch, a published author, and the owner of the Goddess shop Milk & Honey. Her heart, mind, and soul are dedicated to helping others find their spiritual path and return to a place of wholeness. Ultimately, beyond titles, traditions, or trainings; Phoenix is a simple spiritual seeker looking for the Power of the Goddess in all things.

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4 Comments

  1. I loved this, especially the bit about the goddess tapping you! I fought against it forever and a day! Used to (of course) go to Greenham Common. One weekend of action we were stuck at the religious gate. We had gone with the local Buddhist community where we worked! I spent the weekend saying things like That’s right change the gender of the Christian God and then all is o.k. NOT. Basically I was a total pain! As we blocked the road, shouted at this poor Buddish woman meditating on a small hill above us….what good will that do, come down and get killed like we are!!! Years later………my brother asked if I would attend a House of the Goddess evening with him…Sure I said I know these people!!! The rest is history! Went to my first intensive in Germany 1988 I think….Star, Rose, Pandora and Carol….I was totally out of my depth! Yet I knew I had found where I felt I should be!!!!

  2. Very much agree, you always have a choice in what you do. Though I wish both that I got those sudden flashes of insight from the Divine and that I could act on them freely. So much in life makes that difficult.

    1. Yes, life does have a tendency to interfere with our perfect devotion, but that’s why we call it a spiritual practice and not a spiritual perfect! 🙂

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