Spiralled Edges – The Call to Serve
I am been a practicing Pagan and a witch since 1993. In all this time I have had Patron Gods and Goddesses. I have honoured the Gods without worshipping Them and I have called upon Them to bear witness and sometimes to assist when I do spellcasting.
Never before though have I been called to dedicate myself to one God, one Goddess. To serve as their Priestess.
I was approached by The Cailleach in February after I reached my 50th year. ‘I’ve marked you,’ She told me. ‘I have watched and waited over the decades and now I will claim you as my own.’ Yikes!
I approached Her in the Otherworld recently to negotiate what that means. I am to serve Her as Her priestess. I am to honour Her by “sitting with the stones” and marking Her days. I am not being asked to worship Her, which is good because that is not something I am able to give. In exchange, She will assist me in the service I am called to provide as a Soul Midwife.
Even so, I found myself speaking to The Cailleach one night and I asked the questions that had been running through my brain
Why me? Why have you called me to serve you in this way? What qualifies me? What am I supposed to do?
And The Cailleach responded:
Why not you? Who are you to say that you are not worthy, that you are not able?
Why do you think I need you to learn how to be My priestess? You have been learning from Me from the beginning. I have watched and led, and guided and prodded. I claim you now as My own because you are ready. Yes, you have much to learn, and tasks still to do. But you will learn and do and be as My priestess.
Sit with me. Sit with the stones. Write our talks. Ask your questions.
I am harsh, as winter’s grip can only be. I also have incredible patience and will wait until the time is right before acting.
This is My time of sleep. It is your time to step into your role more fully before I awaken at Samhain Eve. By then you will have found your role and your place in Me.
You focus too much on doing! You don’t need to do anything you don’t need to speak anything. Just Be!
Be present in your body
Be present in your life
Be present in your work.
There is no do. There is no try. Just Be.
In the Pagan religions every person is a priest, a priestess. There are no intermediaries between you and your Gods. This is highly personal and for many Pagans, perhaps most, the call to be Priest/ess never moves beyond this individual relationship. You do not have to dedicate yourself to the service of a Deity, even one that is a Patron Deity.
How many times when we are asked to serve, do we put ourselves into a panic, questioning our worthiness and our motives?
We’ve all met someone who seemed to be taking the role of priest or priestess solely for the ego boost and adulations. They have dozens (or more) followers and seem to court controversy at every turn. But their primary focus tends to be a desire for more followers, more adulations, and more attention. I would propose the idea that someone who is taken on this role only for the ego boost does not go through these times of questioning their motives and worthiness.
The call to dedicate one’s self to the service of a Deity is not to be taken lightly. It certainly should not be done on a whim, or as a joke. You may not take it seriously, but the Gods will.
Sit down in meditation, or through journeying to speak with the Deity. Ask questions – ask why me? Look clearly at your motivations. Make sure you are certain about what service is being asked of you, and make even more certain of your ability to provide that service. Ask the Deity what It is offering you in exchange.
Be honest in your answers.
In my case, I asked what service I would be asked to provide and was told that at this time I would be called upon to sit with the Cailleach and with Her stones, to honour Her at her Feast Days. In exchange, She will provide guidance and support to me in my work and service to others as a Soul Midwife.
I specifically asked about worship because I don’t worship and Gods. She indicated that while I am being asked to sit with Her, She has never needed to be worshipped in the past and sees no reason to start now.
Once you have found your answers, or as many answers as you can find and knowing that over time those answers will change, then is the time to dedicate yourself. There are several dedication rituals available, or you could write your own. I used a variation of this dedication which I wrote many years ago when I dedicated myself to the service of The Cailleach.
So, how will you answer your call?