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Author Topic: My friend needs some help.  (Read 2549 times)

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diniesaur

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My friend needs some help.
« on: April 29, 2012, 08:15:27 PM »

I have recently gotten back in regular contact with my best childhood friend, and I discovered to my shock that she, too, is interested in Paganism! If I remember correctly, she's got a few books, but she says that her parents aren't accepting at all, which surprises me because they seemed so nice when we were little. She says she can't go to Pagan websites because her parents will check her history as long as she lives with them, and I definitely don't want to make her parents mad at me. She's been doing meditation and energy work on her own (and she may be better than I am, but I'm not sure :whistle:), but she said she wants to get more involved with the Divine aspect of Paganism, like finding patron deities, etc. She seems to admire my relationships with Set and Bast, and she's been asking me about these things.

I have seen suggestions for Pagans living with unaccepting parents to search for mythology, and I was wondering if you guys have any good ideas for sources that tell about the gods and goddesses beyond the popular culture-influenced basics (I ask this because I definitely had to do some digging before I could find much unbiased information about Set, and you guys certainly helped). All pantheons would be helpful. We'd be particularly grateful for sources that aren't written by Pagans but that are still unbiased, since her parents probably don't want her to read things written by Pagans. I guess I could summarize the Pagan sources if it's necessary, though.

Any suggestions? I want to help her find things for herself without doing anything unethical.

Speaking of that, is it unethical to help someone over eighteen learn about neo-Paganism--and not just ancient mythology--if they're still living with parents who are unsupportive?
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dragonspring

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2012, 08:43:05 PM »

I don't think it is unethical to help your friend.  But as long as she lives with her parents, she should respect their wishes inside their home. 

I have found that it is best to learn about mythology directly from the source.  Classic literature (such as work by Homer and Virgil) is a good source for Greek and Roman mythology.  For a broader range of mythology, I would suggest Bulfinch's Mythology.  I also found a lot of information in The Golden Bough but the speculation therein might be suspect.  She could probably find both of these at a used book store in the mythology and folklore area.

The Eddas are available for Norse and the Mabinogion for Welsh mythology.  There are online sources for the Irish myths and many books on Irish folklore if her interest lies in that direction. 
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earthmuffin

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2012, 09:04:10 PM »

I don't think your friend should deliberately make waves with her parents, but I have to say I am amazed at the number of parents who are the thought police for their children.  :confused: Yes, kids should obey their parents' rules while living in their home, but I really don't think the rules should extend to what their 18 year old children are allowed to read, believe or think.

You may find some info on sacred-texts.com and www.theoi.com.
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diniesaur

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2012, 09:22:13 PM »

Thanks, everyone! She is also very pleased with the resources. She's going to wait to read The Golden Bough until she gets to college, which shouldn't be long at all. The reason she's still with her parents is because she was in my year before I skipped a grade, so she's still a senior in high school. It will be nice for her to not have to wait, though. As bluefire said, she can study Paganism without "shouting it from the rooftops." From what my friend said, the reason her mother is so worried is because a relative was "into" Paganism and died young, so she's afraid it will happen to everyone I guess. Luckily, it seems that my friend isn't studying Paganism just to be cool or trendy (it wouldn't be like her at all); she seems to really get it.
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Wolfsrain

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2012, 11:53:24 PM »

From what my friend said, the reason her mother is so worried is because a relative was "into" Paganism and died young, so she's afraid it will happen to everyone I guess.

Stuff like this upsets me. Catholics die young all the time. So do Muslims... merf. It just... happens.
I hope your friend can find freedom in her studies and thoughts when she goes to college. Maybe one day her parents will be alright with it.
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diniesaur

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2012, 12:02:18 AM »

From what my friend said, the reason her mother is so worried is because a relative was "into" Paganism and died young, so she's afraid it will happen to everyone I guess.

Stuff like this upsets me. Catholics die young all the time. So do Muslims... merf. It just... happens.
I hope your friend can find freedom in her studies and thoughts when she goes to college. Maybe one day her parents will be alright with it.

Yes, it's frustrating. It must be another fallacy caused by the human brain. At least she means well, but hopefully when I get all old and she realizes that I'm Pagan she'll quit believing that.
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BronwynWolf

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2012, 06:13:20 AM »

If she's leaning toward the Celtic, the book "Celtic Heritage" by Rees and Rees
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bluefire

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2012, 11:19:59 AM »

I don't think your friend should deliberately make waves with her parents, but I have to say I am amazed at the number of parents who are the thought police for their children. 

I don't post here a lot anymore, but I do skim the posts every once in a while and the parenting issues seems to grab me the hardest. Thought police parents of older children sadden me to my soul. That kind of disruption of the normal flow of life creates such negative energy that it is toxic to individuals, families, communities. I get it. I understand parents wanting to steer their children in the right direction. I really do. I raised two children and I had my share of scary moments. But there is a difference between leading children right and putting up barricades for the very skills they have to practice while still safely at home.

One piece of advice for your friend, Diniesaur, and one piece of advice for us all.

If your friend wants more of a connection to the Divine, meditation and awareness are available for all. Meditation does not have to be elaborate. It can be a simple relaxation when lying in bed to go to sleep at night. Setting the intention of listening to the Divine and being open to hearing is a marvelous prayer.  Successfully clearing of the mind for even a minute opens the window to hear more clearly the messages we receive all day long.

And for all of us, we need to own who we are, live what we believe. The more the pagan community can be comfortable with this blessed path, the less resistance we set up in the energic mix of ideas and perceptions in the world at large.

Blessed be.
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FairyQueen

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2012, 12:35:32 PM »

Does your friend have access to the library and time enough to spare in there to read? She could read any number of books in the library, Pagan or otherwise, while in the building if she had time. I'm sure she could make up "excuses" as to why she is there all the time, too. It'd be easier than trying to find hidey-holes for books and erasing internet history constantly.

My heart goes out to her and I hope she finds outlet soon. Good luck!
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Wolfsrain

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2012, 07:41:42 AM »

And for all of us, we need to own who we are, live what we believe. The more the pagan community can be comfortable with this blessed path, the less resistance we set up in the energic mix of ideas and perceptions in the world at large.

Blessed be.

Very true. And agreed with FairyQueen, libraries are great. :)
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rat

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Re: My friend needs some help.
« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2012, 10:30:11 PM »

I was skimming the forums when I found this.
Thank you all for the wonderful advice. :grouphug:
I can't even explain what a wonderful feeling it is to realize how many people care about your well being without even knowing you. This is truly a wonderfully powerful forum. I really appreciate each and everyone one of you that took the time to comment on this page, and than you Diniesaur, you have been such an amazing friend over the years. I vaguely remember you telling me you consulted your pagan friends about this, but it is truly heartwarming to read the above.  ()

I will admit that its weird reading a discussion, and clueing in that its about you :D

I have been slowly inching forward the idea of my faith to my parents. My essential oils are displayed proudly in my room. I have set up a makeshift altar in my room. I meditate freely.

I know my parents too well to know how they would take this. "Its a stage" "You can never talk to THOSE people again." "you actually believe THAT?" "do you know what society will think of you?"

With my parents, especially at this age, it would be better to stay in the broom closet.

I absolutely am cherishing the advice given. Libraries! I discovered the pagan section last week. Oh how it was a horror trying to drag myself out of there to catch a bus! I have taken the covers off my books. They look very unpagan to the untrained eye.

Its very hard for me to lie. I simply cannot. Instead, I've found a happy medium. I only state parts of the truth. The scarf I am knitting. "I had a dream about it" Not, "I had a dream about strangling a demon with this scarf, and I find comfort and protection in knitting this sacred item".


Whats hard with my parents, is that they really DO want whats best for me. The problem being, they don't know how to get there.

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