I’ve been wrestling for some time with how to write up the Finding Freyja ritual, and I think I just realized why: This is the first time I have offered a public ritual under my own name, led only by myself.
Sure, I have led workshops on my own occasionally. I have led countless private rituals on many scales, both on my own and with others. I’ve led public rituals on behalf of various groups, even some that draw hundreds of people. I’ve designed and performed weddings, memorials, initiations, and my own ordination ceremony, as well as less personally momentous devotional rituals of various kinds, of course. I’ve even traveled across the country, convincing a friend to come with me, to present an intensive ritual/workshop at a festival, which I hope to do more often henceforth, to the degree that I can afford it.
But I’ve never simply stood up, at a public event, by myself, under my own name and auspices, to just do what I do.
How crazy is that?
That’s not to say that Lon and Xochiquetzal weren’t both there to help me, but they did only what I gave them to do, and were not co-presenters in any sense. Even having friends in the background ready and willing to help in whatever way, it’s not the same as someone to defer to, someone to be in service to…
Someone to hide behind.
Every time I think I’ve stopped hiding I realize, no, I’m still hiding. Specific individuals I need will know who I am, and I can burst out from this fog of obscurity when someone else needs me to stand out for a while on their behalf. But on my own? Not so much.
I apparently find it impossible to believe the gods really need me.
Only I’m getting to a point where I actually need people in general to know who I am, not because I matter any more now than I did before, but because I can’t be a way for the gods to reach people if I have no reach, and the work They want me to do requires reaching people.
For years the gods – especially those whose domains include Fire – have admonished me not to hide so much, to let my Light So Shine.
Brighid, especially, has been emphatic about this, and has instructed me to learn a bit of blacksmithing for it. She and other gods of Poetry and Song have emphasized repeatedly that They will gladly inspire me if only I will share what They give me with others. I’m not supposed to be hiding away under a bushel.
I have some instructions and other ideas how to work on this, but all my solutions take energy I don’t seem to have, and help I don’t know how to ask for, not because I can’t ask for help when I know what I need, but because I don’t know what the help is that I need other than a general awareness that I’m not getting anywhere alone, and part of being alone feeds the hiding, which is counterproductive indeed.
For today, my goal is just to stop hiding this little bit.
P.S. While I was searching for a suitable version of Light So Shine
I found this most excellent flash mob video which I think illustrates the point far better!