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Sparrow

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Going back to the start

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Sparrow

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I just spent a good hour writing in my journal. Recently I have been scouring the forums like a thing possessed, gobbling down the words like an addict, and the end result was that I just felt mixed up and confused. Although what I've read has been fascinating and useful, my mind felt blurry and unfocused. I've been scared I'm missing something, so I've been trying to cover as much ground as I can think of, following up everything.

 

With so many possibilities for learning it's hard to know where to begin. I was going to say, "I wish things would be more clear", but actually what I wish is that I could see more clearly. All of the messages are there, I just don't know how to read them yet.

 

In my journal I worked out my insecurities and tried to figure out where I really am on my path. I realised I am at the very beginning. For all I've read about different paths, for all I've "tried them on" -- that knowledge has value, but only because it is in itself knowledge. One of the key phrases in a book series I love is, "All knowledge is worth having", and I firmly believe that. But for all the knowledge I've gained, it hasn't moved me forward. I'm still at the very beginning.

 

In a way that's exciting, in another it's intimidating. What if I screw up? The only thing left to me is to just... have faith. Put trust in my intuition, and the little I do know.

 

I know that the woods pull me in deeper. I know that I could never live anywhere other than a coastline. I know that the weather pulls at me. I know that I'm drawn to the elements; I've been fascinated by them ever since I found out what they were (thanks, Pokemon). I know that I can feel the life in every living thing, every leaf and root and branch, and that the dead leaves me feeling hollow, so much so that I became vegetarian. I know that I desperately need to learn how to manipulate energy so that I can stop being buffeted by every damn thing that happens around me spiritually/emotionally/don't know what word to use.

 

But I'm right at the start. For all my knowledge, this is all I really actually know, deep in my bones and blood. This is my beginning. Everything that came before now is just... I don't even know. Superfluous.

 

I don't really know how to wind this up, so: Hello.

 

I'm glad to be here.

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I think, at least for us witches not raised as such, we've all been in this situation. This time last year, I was looking through books on witchcraft, and none of the knowledge I gathered spoke to me. It was just a bunch of words and lists and I couldn't really connect to a good 60%+ of it.

 

I finally tossed most of my books and tools, kept what intrinsically felt good to me (a candle, incense, my tarot deck, a notebook, and that was it), made an effort to forget everything I had read about or had preconceptions about, and, like you, I got out that notebook and started free-writing about all this.

 

I had full-blown conversations with myself in that notebook about what it was I was looking for in my craft, and...the answers just started coming to me in those writings, because I was literally spilling all my subconscious out onto paper. One of the first 'gifts' I received from my subconscious was my chart of elements (yay, elements!), which, after further research, I drew up that day, and it's been one of the fundamental aspects of my path ever since.

 

I wouldn't worry about 'screwing up'. That holds you back. Really, just LISTEN to yourself. What sounds right? What doesn't? Go with your gut instinct, and you'll learn a lot about yourself, and, consequently, you'll learn more about your path.

 

Good luck with this! It's a fun self-discovery project, if you let it be. :)

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Ilexys is completely right, everyone who has discovered the craft for themselves has these doubts, I've still got some of them, but I'm slowly giving them less power as I start to disbelieve them; in the end they only mean something if we give them value and by acknowledging them we are stepping closer to overcoming them if we don't loose ourselves.

 

I've still got my old notes from 2 years ago when I first looked at these forums, but when I try to clarify them I find that I'm unable to; some of the things recorded are still useful aids, but most of them are just useless and it takes a lot of energy to identify their value, if they have any that is.

 

I haven't "talked out" my issues or written about them, but that is definitely the next step; almost a week ago for the first time I started recording the things that I discovered during divination and for that I'm incredibly grateful, they are worth so much more than any of the research I've done as they come directly from me and not from another's ideas.

 

 

I have the fear of "screwing up" as well, but for me it's deeper than that; for a long time it has been a part of who I am to make everything perfect, and this usually leaves me paralysed from moving forward because I know it's impossible for something to be perfect. The only thing I can do is to completely abandon my notion of "perfectness" and embrace the uncertainty that action creates; I always remind myself that if something is meant to happen, then it will, no matter how long it takes or how much I want to be "perfect" at it.

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I think, at least for us witches not raised as such, we've all been in this situation. This time last year, I was looking through books on witchcraft, and none of the knowledge I gathered spoke to me. It was just a bunch of words and lists and I couldn't really connect to a good 60%+ of it.

 

I finally tossed most of my books and tools, kept what intrinsically felt good to me (a candle, incense, my tarot deck, a notebook, and that was it), made an effort to forget everything I had read about or had preconceptions about, and, like you, I got out that notebook and started free-writing about all this.

 

I had full-blown conversations with myself in that notebook about what it was I was looking for in my craft, and...the answers just started coming to me in those writings, because I was literally spilling all my subconscious out onto paper. One of the first 'gifts' I received from my subconscious was my chart of elements (yay, elements!), which, after further research, I drew up that day, and it's been one of the fundamental aspects of my path ever since.

 

I wouldn't worry about 'screwing up'. That holds you back. Really, just LISTEN to yourself. What sounds right? What doesn't? Go with your gut instinct, and you'll learn a lot about yourself, and, consequently, you'll learn more about your path.

 

Good luck with this! It's a fun self-discovery project, if you let it be. :)

 

Ilexys, thank you so much for sharing your experience with me. I got rid of a lot of books recently too and more than anything else I think I just need to stop reading, and listen to myself. Just listen full stop, actually. There's part of me that keeps trying to learn everything by rote and that is never going to happen. It isn't even what I want. Before I discovered TW my thoughts were, "Forget it, I'm just going to forge my own path, nothing else makes sense." I need to bear that in mind.

 

It's very comforting to know I'm not the only one who's gone through this. There is such an incredible amount of knowledge available on the forums and it's humbling to realise how little I actually know. But it's exciting too, because I have a clean slate.

 

Thank you again. :)

Sparrow

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Ilexys is completely right, everyone who has discovered the craft for themselves has these doubts, I've still got some of them, but I'm slowly giving them less power as I start to disbelieve them; in the end they only mean something if we give them value and by acknowledging them we are stepping closer to overcoming them if we don't loose ourselves.

 

I've still got my old notes from 2 years ago when I first looked at these forums, but when I try to clarify them I find that I'm unable to; some of the things recorded are still useful aids, but most of them are just useless and it takes a lot of energy to identify their value, if they have any that is.

 

I haven't "talked out" my issues or written about them, but that is definitely the next step; almost a week ago for the first time I started recording the things that I discovered during divination and for that I'm incredibly grateful, they are worth so much more than any of the research I've done as they come directly from me and not from another's ideas.

 

 

I have the fear of "screwing up" as well, but for me it's deeper than that; for a long time it has been a part of who I am to make everything perfect, and this usually leaves me paralysed from moving forward because I know it's impossible for something to be perfect. The only thing I can do is to completely abandon my notion of "perfectness" and embrace the uncertainty that action creates; I always remind myself that if something is meant to happen, then it will, no matter how long it takes or how much I want to be "perfect" at it.

 

Nineheart, I can totally relate to getting more from divination just yourself and not from a book. I was trying to learn tarot by reading all the meanings online and trying to memorise them. I've given that up entirely and now I'm just letting the cards tell me their own story. I'm sure our own interpretations will be far more meaningful than anything we could read written out by someone else.

 

It's good to know I'm not the only one who has doubts. Many people on the forum are well-established in their path and are full of confidence. It's a wonderful thing and I hope eventually I can reach a similar level of confidence in my own craft.

 

Thank you for sharing with me. :)

Sparrow

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Every time I focus on something different in my path, it feels like a new beginning. And it takes a lot of patience and confidence to move forward from that new place when I'm feeling like a noob. But it's worth it.

 

Sometimes I think this forum isn't about learning things so much as sharing experiences and perspectives. I tried scouring the threads looking for goldmines, but I had to give up quickly because sometimes I just wasn't ready for what I read, or it had no direct impact on what I was doing at the time. Once I found a topic I was interested in, I would search it, skim it, get a feel for it, then promptly forget it and see what I can do for myself. Then ask more questions if need be. But that's the point. My experiences will not be the same as Michele's, or yours, or anyone else's, but there are some commonalities that we can share, advice, etc.

 

And one of the best things about the craft is its limitless range of "new" stuff to learn and try.

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I know what you mean. The more one reads, the more confused one can get. What I did was to take what I felt strongly would work for me, and left the rest. Not that I might not change and use it later, but if I do not feel strongly that this is me, this will work for me, then the likely hood of it working is pretty small.

 

All the Best!

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And one of the best things about the craft is its limitless range of "new" stuff to learn and try.

 

That is a wonderful thought. I'm going to hold fast to that. Right now I am trying to develop in particular areas, but stagnation I think is just as bad as feeling like a noob. Limiting ourselves all the time wouldn't be better than being a novice.

 

Sorry that's a bit scrambled, hope you know what I mean. Thank you for sharing your experience. :)

 

Sparrow

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I know what you mean. The more one reads, the more confused one can get. What I did was to take what I felt strongly would work for me, and left the rest. Not that I might not change and use it later, but if I do not feel strongly that this is me, this will work for me, then the likely hood of it working is pretty small.

 

All the Best!

 

I'm trying to do that at the moment -- leave alone the things I don't feel mature enough to learn about/work with yet, and focus on where I feel comfortable but challenged. A hard balance to strike, but to me, balance is always worth striving for.

 

Thanks for your thoughts :)

Sparrow

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