I’ve written about this before on my previous blog, but I want to spend some time today writing about Pagan Monasticism and my dreams. This might be of interest to you, but it might just be me writing things to myself and that’s fine too.
My biggest dream in life, my big goal and aim in life is to be a Pagan Monk. I want to start or join a Pagan monastic movement. I want to live a life of devotion, contemplation and service to the gods/ kindreds, earth and all life. I don’t want it to be a monastery closed off to the world, but one that is open to the world, helping and serving the community. I want a place set aside to worship the gods, but where anyone in the community can come and do the same. I dream of such institutions across the country and the world.
I want to live a life of contemplative practice, according to a rule of life and a set daily rhythm of prayer and ritual, study and work, all in service to the spirits and the local community. I dream of having a building with rooms set aside with statues of the gods where anyone is able to come and give offerings or pray. I dream of outdoor space where we can hold rituals or give offerings to the local land spirits. It would focus on spiritual practices, both pagan and from other religions around the world. We will emphasise silence and solitude, gratitude, simplicity, humility and compassion.
I want it to be a monastic community which lives in service to others, showing our Pagan values. It would be a monastery with a space set aside for art and music so people can come and engage in the bardic arts. There would be a library for people to learn wisdom and study about Paganism, Nature and the gods. There would be a computer for people to do Genealogy research so they may learn about, and learn to respect, their ancestors. There would be rooms in which guests could stay, as well as a community cafe, so that we may practice and embody the virtues of hospitality and generosity. There would be resources for divination that people may hear the voice of the gods, and there would be pastoral counselling available by trained priests to help those who need spiritual help from an Anam Cara/ Soul Friend. And we would provide teaching to the community both free and at cost where needed. There would be a place to learn herbalism or make/ purchase natural products for health and home. We would brew mead for our offerings to the gods and to help as a source of finance for the monastery. Perhaps we will keep our own bees. Perhaps the monks would live with all things in common, but there would not be celibacy. Any “profits” made would be given away to others in need. It would be a community devoted to serving the community, to fighting for a just and peaceful planet, healing a fragmented and hurting world.
The community will take part in a set rhythm of life, with periods of celebration for the major pagan festivals and new moons, as well as periods of fasting, There would be regular daily prayers at sunrise, sunset and mealtimes. There would be regular prayers for the dead. Rites of passage such as Weddings and Funerals could be held there, and perhaps there would be a place for a woodland burial site.
It will be a community that emphasises our reverence for the Earth Mother, Spirits of Nature and all life. We will seek to live in harmony with nature, from eating veggie/ vegan to recycling and composting, from gardening and growing our own food using permaculture methods, to using renewable energy sources. Harmony will be our goal.
These are my early thoughts on the vision I feel called to in life. Now the challenge is….how can it be achieved?