Defining My Belief: Deity

A good friend of mine recently raised a question to me. She asked what relationship the god and the goddess have with each other: “Are they a mother and son relationship or a husband and wife relationship or both? Or are they the earth and the sun and you use the terms to help better understand the meanings?”

Consider this:
A majority of pagan religions are considered to be polytheistic. This means they recognize more than one god within their faith. Most people would agree that Wicca is a polytheistic religion, worshiping at least a god and a goddess. And for some, I believe it this is the case. But not for me (and I’m sure I’m not the only one). 

I was taught, and have read enough to believe that this deity we look to is one. We call this being Spirit, and it is Spirit that we call upon when referencing the god and the goddess (in any aspect). So I am in a monotheistic belief system. Simple enough. 

In light of the singularity of Spirit, it must be understood that this being takes on many different aspects. At times, Spirit assumes more than one aspect at the same time. These aspects represent different parts of the world we live in. Sometimes these parts are tangible (the sun, moon, and rain). Sometimes these parts are intangible (love, healing, energies of all kinds).

When I need to cast (a spell) for something, say a friend is in poor health, and I would like to send healing energies in hopes that it helps him or her get better, I will call on a specific aspect of Spirit. For example, Brigid (whom I talked about in my previous post) is considered a deity versed in the healing arts. I would ask Spirit to assume that form so that my specific need would (hopefully) be fulfilled. 

I may call upon both a god and goddess aspect for ritual, particularly for a sabbat. At Samhain, for example, I would honor the god in his passing and welcome the goddess to watch over the winter in the same ritual. I may even call upon two gods (the battle of the Holly King and the Oak King, for example) or goddesses. 

Throughout the year, the aspects change and evolve. In the spring, the god and goddess are lovers as the goddess conceives of the god and eventually gives birth to him, she transforms and becomes his mother once again. They are young, they age, they change throughout the year. Each time we call upon them, they are in a different form. Each time they change, so they are never mother and lover at the same time.  

Still, through each different aspect, we must remember that it is just the one being: Spirit. Each different form is just a manifestation of a specific need that we call upon at any particular moment. I like to visualize a mist that shifts and changes, and becomes the appropriate being or beings when I call upon them. If you’ve seen The Lion King, imagine that the clouds are Spirit and when Simba needed that specific aspect (his father), they shifted their shape to become that aspect for him. That’s probably the best way I can describe how this works for me. 

Now, a more complicated question, and one that plagues all belief systems with a deity, is what, exactly, is deity? That question has weighed heavily on me for a while now. But it will have to wait for another post, another day. 

I hope this explanation helps you understand who, or what I am talking about when I reference all of these different gods and goddesses throughout my different blog posts. If you have any more questions, please, by all means, ask away!

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