18 years ago I used to be Mormon.
Yes. I was one of those door knocking and proselytizing church goers. LOL. I actually did a Mormon Missionary stint in Ontario where I was called Sister Ferguson. My choice to be a Latter-Day Saint was one of wanting to belong and have structure in my life. I did not have this growing up. At the time of my baptism I was recovering from drug addiction and homelessness. I was 20 and felt I had found my family.
Fast forward 10 years. I had had many experiences within the church that where positive and many not so positive. I will not detail the events here because it will not add substance just words to this article. Over those 10 years in the church I had gained inner strength. I had found confidence and self assurance. I will always be grateful to those years in the LDS church because of that growth. I learnt to be who I was within the confines of the doctrines of the church. I had come to a point where my mind was opening.
I had gained enough stability in my life where I did not have to worry day to day where my rent and food was coming from. I was able to lift my head and see what was around me in a new light and with new knowledge. I was starting to really think about what it was I was following in my life and compare it to what was actually happening. I began to see the hypocrisy and the ugly underbelly of what the church was about. This article is not about bashing this LDS church, they have some beautiful beliefs…so I will not go further here.
What I began to see and feel was not sitting right with me. I wanted to expand and become more then I was. I was taking small steps in that direction and then found I was an anomaly amongst the women in the church. I was made fun of and my honesty was not appreciated and made me someone the people did not want to associate with.
I finally left the church. When I made that decision I found myself lost and not knowing what to do or how to do it. So I just let myself be and do what felt good. After a few years I decided to name myself Pagan.
You might be wondering…did I just arbitrarily start calling my self a Pagan cause it was cool or fun. No. No I did not. I began to call myself Pagan because it helped me to let others know how I identified on the spiritual realm. I also knew it was the way for me to go for further growth. I felt the power in it and the freedom.
My heart was pulled toward the earth…even before I had chosen to be baptized as a LDS. This is one of the reasons I had for leaving the church. They are so rich yet do so little to help the environment. It was a bone I had with the distribution of the funds we as members of the church contributed into tithing funds. Moving on…
It was natural for me to see the beauty in Pagan ways and witchcraft, I have always believed in things beyond our seeing and understanding. Magick, Manifestation, resonance and divine feminine…these called to my soul. The Idea that we could create “magick” and have some sort of affect on what happens within ourselves and in our environment…this was mind-blowing to me. I was raised to believe that we have no power to control what happens, no power to control our thoughts so we better just deal and suck it up. I was never taught to be empowered…Learning about and embracing Paganism taught me that.
At this point I have Identified as Pagan for about 8 years. It has been a wonderful ride. I have never experiences such personal growth!