If one is totally headblind. (Or an extension of my previous post on the topic: here)
I already discussed how I am completely headblind. And how that sometimes can be difficult in the pagan/polytheist online crowd. After all, there is a lot on how people hear their gods, or their gods speak to them constantly. And I don’t experience that at all. Hell, as I admitted before, I can’t even tell when I’m getting pinged for anything, or if signs are being directed at me.
But, that’s the other post. For this one, I’m expanding a little bit.
Lots of online pagans (pretty much 99.99% of my interactions with pagan people are online–I know no one in real life) all talk about how they call to their gods, and get answers, or their gods call to them. It’s a presence, something distinct they hear, see, or feel/sense. And lots of newbies are really freaked out if they don’t have this kind of thing happening to them. I know I see at least a dozen questions a week in groups/on tumblr from people who are new and completely disturbed that they’re doing something “wrong” because they aren’t hearing anything. But the truth is, there are far more pagans out there…people out there…that never feel/sense/see/hear anything, as opposed to those who do. And lots of pagans online like to flash about how much time they spend talking with deities (or at least, those on tumblr are of that variety a lot of the time). Not that I mean to insult anyone who does have contact – that is not the case at all. Nor am I meaning to malign those who are called by their path to share some things they hear from their gods. Instead, I am in effect talking about those who are bragging for no reason other than that they “should” hear/sense/see/feel things. And to those who insist that if you don’t, you’re doing something terribly wrong and are faking.
Now, thankfully (lately), it seems like some things in this whole fiasco are calmed down. It’s been a while now since I’ve seen lots of flaming going on about people being wrong for not seeing things, which I’m very glad to see. But I am also saddened after some small manner that even now I have to feel the need to write something in defense of the fact that I’m one of those polytheists who does not sense anything.
So when I try calling on my gods, I have no clue if they hear me, acknowledge me, or are telling me to get lost. It’s an interesting predicament. I have to rely on a few other methods to get answers, and even then, I’m never sure how clear my readings of these things are. I move very slowly, partially by nature–but honestly it is mostly because I have no innate sensory ability and have no ability to really gauge if what I think I’m seeing is real or not.
Being “headblind” is difficult. Calling out in that case does not have definitive answer of yes or no. And even if it did, I cannot hear/sense the answer. So some spirit could be throwing up major hints to me, and I would be absolutely oblivious to it. That is sometimes dangerous, and other times it is just terribly difficult. And I wish that more people were open about the fact they are pagan/polytheist/witch/whatever-chosen-label and they do not have that experience of spirit contact. It would help to dispel some of the mythos about how all under the “pagan” label are supposed to be able to see/sense/hear/feel signs and contact from their deities.
But that is just how I feel about it. And I just work on myself. I can work on figuring out how to get around my being headblind. I work on divination (even if results are sometimes unclear and require multiple readings), and do lots of research. That is how I get around not having any mental connection to those supernatural things that are beyond daily kenning. And that is at the moment something to work as a compromise.
Unlike some people I’ve seen online, who desperately want to lose their headblind status, I am fine with it. Yes, it is difficult. Yes, sometimes I wish I sensed and felt more. I won’t deny that at all. However, there are sometimes benefits to my not sensing anything. I very rarely feel unsettled in my spiritual practices (perhaps because I can’t sense when I should be, but I’ll explore that some other time). And sometimes it is nice to not be distracted by signs or possible symbols that may not be clear, or may not even relate to what I’m working on. If someday I am ever not headblind, we’ll see how I feel then. But for now I am comfortable with the fact that when I call upon those deities/spirits I want to work with, I have to tread carefully and use less certain methods to determine the path that I take.∗