I’m one of those devotees. You know the ones. You do them a favor once and then they think you’re their best friend. They become your groupie, follow you around, give you things you didn’t ask for and don’t really need.
Last year I needed something important, so I started drafting a spell. I’d been planning to work with Inanna but she directed me to you: “You’ll want Isis for this,” she said. “What you need isn’t really my specialty.” I hadn’t really thought about you for years and years–not since our Egyptology segment in sixth grade, I think–so the dream I had, with instructions on the work I needed to do, came out of left field. You know you’re doing your witchcraft right when you encounter surprises. Spells that shoot off in an unexpected direction. Dreams where you wake up and think, “that didn’t come from me.”
So I began my work with you. It was absolutely the right work to be doing, much better than the work I thought I’d do with Inanna. I’d just come back to witchcraft after many years away–oh, it felt so incredible to be back!–and you were the first deity to ever show up to one of my rituals. I knew I was doing what I was supposed to be doing.
But it took me awhile to realize that you only intended to work with me that one time.
See, I’d absorbed this idea that everyone has to have a matron goddess. Rationally I knew that wasn’t true at all, but somehow I couldn’t shake the idea. So I decided that my matron goddess must be you, since, well, you helped me with that thing I had to do that one time.
I read books. I did devotionals. I found primary sources, hymns and artwork. But I couldn’t figure out why nothing felt right, why my devotion to you seemed to clash with my devotion to my practice.
In hindsight, I think it was because you were pretty well-stocked on priestesses and dedicants. You had the Fellowship of Isis. You had the Kemetists. You’re one of the biggest, strongest, most beloved goddesses in human history. Your practices were well-established.
And the practices of your followers just weren’t right for me. I finally learned what the call of a goddess feels like when I heard the call of the Morrigan–a call that instantly integrated itself into the work I was doing, a partnership that, as surprising as it was (me? dedicated to a battle goddess?) clicked. There was no jealousy on your part. Just a gentle parting. With love and reverence, I took your image off my altar and placed it in my book of shadows.
I’m absolutely certain you and I will cross paths again, and I look forward to that day. Isis, you are so beautiful. You have my love, my admiration, and my gratitude.
3 thoughts on “Pagan Blog Project: Dear Isis”
I am dedicated to The Morrigan, and she is the only deity I truly work with at this time. I have vague relationships with others, because I had experiences similar to yours, but The Morrigan is my primary focus over all others. It is my impression that she prefers it this way and expects it of me. I love her and am happy to oblige. And, yes, Isis is warm and helpful to many who seek aid. That’s wonderful and I appreciate Isis, but I never got close to her.
This post really resonates with me! I’ve done that…had a deity show up and think that from then on we were going to be BFFs, only to wonder why the relationship didn’t develop the way I expected. I almost think it’s caused in part by our culture’s inherent monotheism, that when we meet a god we expect them to be our One and Only. (Also, I love Isis, but I haven’t worked with her in over a decade. She helped me at a time in my life and I haven’t heard from her since).
Avalon, yes! I’ve heard other Pagans go so far as to say that the Morrigan is collecting followers. Her presence is definitely getting stronger. I’m honored and excited to be a part of it.
Mistress of the Hearth, I think you’re right about the influence of monotheism. What’s the point of polytheism if you have to limit yourself to one deity for ever and ever? And I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one who’s had this sort of experience!