Monday, April 13, 2009

Day After Easter: An Anniversary

Easter marks an important point in my life. It is the last time I ever went to church. That was 10 years ago.

I was looking, one last time, desperately, for a joyous and loving god and a celebration of spirit. I thought Easter would be the perfect time to find that. Instead, I sat through sermons and hymn after hymn of doleful criticism regarding my sinful status as a human being.

I tried, I really tried, to find the joy and love in that church service, but I couldn't. I could barely sit though the entire thing, my heart sinking at every mention of how I was sinful and unworthy. After the service, I sat in my car in the parking lot and cried and cried.

This year, Easter marks another anniversary for me: I have been a practicing pagan now for 10 years. The day after that last Easter service was a huge turning point in my life; I left Christianity behind and began to explore paganism. And there I found the spiritual path I was looking for. In finding a spiritual path that I connect with, I've also found the best parts of myself. It's been a long road and I've learned so much about myself and the Divine. And I continue to learn and grow.

Sometimes I think about that young woman sitting in her car, crying her heart out, and I feel all her pain, loss and bewilderment again. I feel so bad for her. Yet I know that had she not had that devastating experience, she would never have had the courage to question her spiritual path and explore other choices. So in another sense, I am grateful for that very sad day. I am thankful for all the wisdom, joy, empowerment and beauty that it lead to in the following years.

It is hard to believe its been a decade already...

8 comments:

coltpixy said...

"Religion is just a name for a path your heath follows." author unknown

Happy anniversary. I am so glad that you seem to be a long way from that girl crying in a car. It has been 32 years for me.

Sorrow said...

Broke my heart to read this..
wanted to hug that gal sitting in her car
all those years ago.
I am so glad
that you have turned those tears
towards a light
that you love.

intothedawn said...

COLTPIXY~ Thanks, it been quite the journey! That's a wonderful quote. One that's a favorite of mine is, "I believe in God, only I spell it Nature. Frank Lloyd Wright"

32 years since you've been to church or 32 years since you found your path?

SORROW~ Thank you-- its hard to believe that person was really me, my spiritual path has become so fulfilling since then. I feel like a different person.

coltpixy said...

That was supposed to be "heart" up there not heath.
I guess you could say 32 years since both.

Another favorite of mine:
All rivers eventually make their way to the ocean.

amy said...

I think it's nice to put it into a positive perspective and think of it as a rebirth of yourself. :) It is awful that something spiritual even if it's the wrong fit can make one feel so bad. I guess that was the final clue that you are on a different and better path for yourself full of love and light.

mrsb said...

Happy anniversary!

intothedawn said...

COLTPIXY~ That's another good quote, and so true, especially when it comes to spirituality. In my mind, at least.

AMY~ Exactly. Spring is really connected with rebirth and growth for me, not just because of what is happening in nature, but because of whats happened in my spiritual life.

MRS B~ Thanks so much! ;-)

Cynthia said...

I am glad it was a good day to remember a death and rebirth of an identity.

In 1992 I had dedicated myself to the Goddess and spent over a decade there, incorporating some Buddhism along the way. Though my path has now turned a different way, without what I learned as a Wiccan I could have never found this path. Observing the turning of the wheel and the drawing down of the moon will always be celebrated in my world.