(Dis)Integration and Being Amazed [part 1]


We are meant to connect. We are meant to find and to fill the wonder in the world. We are meant to bring that which has lain in the gestation of our darkness and illuminate it so that we can come to integration. We are meant to recall this: Our lives are whole. And life is amazing.

Pagan Spirit Gathering taught me some things about how one group of people strives toward wholeness. While the greeting, “Welcome Home” gave me pause, and some of the occasional shouts of “Our Tribe!” around the fire made me feel uncomfortable (those moments call up the final scenes of “Gangs of New York” or makes me think of Chechnya or Rwanda), I found myself quite moved by the rituals they had obviously developed over many years time to impart meaning, not only to individual lives, but to the life and health of the community. Tears rose in me as I watched a group of young men who had been through a rite of passage (and who’s ranks included, not just boys of PSG, but boys from the camp staff as well) introduce themselves to the gathering in order to receive a blessing. The same happened for young women, for the crones, for the men who chose to take on a 20 hour ordeal, for the military members who received a ‘warrior’s blessing’. A Wild Hunt was planned and executed with the support of the community, that took individuals through an intense process of unfolding, grappling, and into renewal. There were women’s rituals, men’s rituals, queer rituals, handfastings and proposals… There was a space for everyone at the gathering, for children of all ages, for those who wanted to plumb the depths of spirit, and for those with a need to laugh and dance.

These people of PSG are attempting to knit together a Pagan soul for themselves as a group. This makes it different from just another Pagan festival. This makes PSG a possibility, a vision – not of some distant tribal past, though there were some romantic echoes of this, but hopefully of a fully integrated future, a future in which people will no longer talk about “going back to mundania” because our connection to the sacred will be so deep and broad, we will never forget this lesson: We are always home.

As those of you who follow my work know, integration is the major thrust of my philosophy of spirit, and my theology is one of the implications of immanence and the sheer vastness of that immanence that reaches beyond our own cosmos, into the smallest microbes, and into each human, God, plant, star, and atom. I’m always asking what we are doing to bring ourselves back into right relationship with the sacred, calling all of our parts to the table, and sitting at that table with the Goddesses, the sea creatures, the gas giants and all of the cosmosphere in its process.

Will you realize today that you are a whole being, and that every bit of you has a role to play in your unfolding? Will you realize today that each person, insect, star, and drop of moisture has the same? Can you work in concert with the sun, moon, and Gods to manifest divine will? Can you take a breath with me, right now, and ask yourself, “Where is my center today? How can I walk in love?”

Blessed be to all of you, and thanks to the people of PSG.

Listen to that song I started the post with, and if you can, get up and dance. Have an amazing day.

[Part 2 of this musing, on “Why I did not audition for Oprah” will come tomorrow]

photo of Selena Fox and T. Thorn Coyle waltzing by Robert Paxton

#integration #PSG

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