Spiritually speaking, how do you label yourself and why?

IheartTarot

Its off topic of the thread but - what is the difference between a witch and a green witch?

Following Little Sparrow's above question from another thread, to help us understand better I would like to know if any of you self-identify with a certain label and why.

Personally, I identify myself as an Eclectic Pagan. I have avoided religion for a long time but recently felt I was missing out and also feel it is the only way for me to encourage tolerance of my practices such as divination (which is actually illegal in my country! :surprise: , even though our Witchcraft Suppression Act is unconstitutional IMHO). My beliefs are 100% Pagan according to beliefnet.
 

Sulis

I'm me. I see no need for labels.
 

Flaxen

Interesting question. :)

When I first moved away from Christianity, I felt a strong need to find a new label. I knew that I had strong Pagan leanings but when I looked into that further I discovered the myriad of sub-divisions! I then spent a few years exploring different aspects of paganism trying hard to find the one where I 'belonged'. The trouble is that all spiritual/religious philosophy interests me. I enjoy reading Buddhist texts, the writings of Christian mystics, the work of Greek philosophers etc. All of them add something to my understanding of Spirit and it's difficult to untangle all those threads.

I've come to the conclusion that my journey is truly my own and that labels don't help me but are an attempt by me to fit my spirituality into a neat little box. The need to categorise is very human I think and one that I struggle to resist. :)

ETA: I also think that my desire for a label was related to a desire to belong to a community of like-minded people. It's wonderful if you can find a group who share your philosophy and support you in your journey. My experience of the Pagan scene in the UK is that it is possibly too disparate to fill that desire in me. I'll have to be content with being a lone wolf. :)
 

linnie

Interesting question. :)

When I first moved away from Christianity, I felt a strong need to find a new label. I knew that I had strong Pagan leanings but when I looked into that further I discovered the myriad of sub-divisions! I then spent a few years exploring different aspects of paganism trying hard to find the one where I 'belonged'. The trouble is that all spiritual/religious philosophy interests me. I enjoy reading Buddhist texts, the writings of Christian mystics, the work of Greek philosophers etc. All of them add something to my understanding of Spirit and it's difficult to untangle all those threads.

I've come to the conclusion that my journey is truly my own and that labels don't help me but are an attempt by me to fit my spirituality into a neat little box. The need to categorise is very human I think and one that I struggle to resist. :)

ETA: I also think that my desire for a label was related to a desire to belong to a community of like-minded people. It's wonderful if you can find a group who share your philosophy and support you in your journey. My experience of the Pagan scene in the UK is that it is possibly too disparate to fill that desire in me. I'll have to be content with being a lone wolf. :)

Ditto :)
 

celticnoodle

how do I label myself and why?

well, I was born into and raised in the Catholic faith, and so I fully identify with that religion. I still practice, though not as strictly as the Catholic faith wishes. I don't see the necessity of confessing my sins to my priest and I am not so faithful as to attend Mass each week and every Holy Day. So, I'm not a 'good' Catholic, in that sense.

I don't even know if I fully believe everything a Catholic is suppose to believe, but most of it is comfortable for me to hold onto and so I do. I like the fellowship of my church and many of my best friends belong to the same Church as I. However, not all of these lovely people know about my tarot business or that I have these other abilities.

I am afraid to share it with all of them openly, as I know it is against the faith. It is things such as this that keeps me from truly being a 'good' Catholic. I feel that everyone has a gift and many gifts that are meant be shared with each other. Who am I to say which gift is a good or bad thing to have? I am not a bad person and I have these gifts that the Church would condemn. So, I feel trapped to actually share them openly.

I believe I am really more "spiritual" then "religious". I see no problem in any religious practice, as long as they all treat each other fairly and do not harm each other. We all need to remember that we are ALL children of God. and to me, God is not a person--a white man with a long flowing beard who sits upon a throne in heaven. God is energy and we are all a part of this energy and as such we are all deserving to be treated equally by each other.
 

jema

Ditto on almost all of Flaxens post.

I come from a background of being baptized Jehovas witness so for me it was important to make a clear cut break from that and into something new (and I wanted it to be as far removed from JW as possible) so I identified me as pagan a long time, did the rituals, wrote my book of shadows, did a lot of spells and divination, ventured into trance-work, studied ancient religion at Uni etc.
Landed for a long time as a solitare ceremonial magician, flirted a little with Thelema and I guess that is where I am today - somewhere between Golden Dawn and Thelema, dipping my toes but not diving into uncle Al's water just yet.
I been keeping a very honest and 'raw' diary for over 30 years and it makes for some interesting and at times really painfully embarrassing reading.
Right now I am very much my own though, not doing any group work at all but beginning to miss it. Drawback of living where I live far up north in Sweden.
 

BodhiSeed

I find it very hard to put a label on myself or fit myself in a box. I think there is some good in most religions and philosophies, but there is a lot I don't agree with at all. If I were forced to choose a label, it would be Omnist: a personal philosophy based on studying other religions, philosophies, and traditions, but more importantly, including one's own personal experience.
 

DownwardSpiral

I'm me. I see no need for labels.

I'm with Sulis on this one.

I have books about wicca and witches and witchcraft and magic. And then other books about Spirit and Souls and why? Because it's fascinating : )

Spiritually speaking....I'm not religious but I consider myself Spiritual and my idea of what makes me Spiritual is probably way different from someone elses.

I have absolutely no desire to research everything out there so that I can "find" somewhere to fit in. I'm comfortable being me.
 

IheartTarot

Thanks everyone! :thumbsup:

I hope someone (else - sorry celticnoodle) responds who does have a label. ;)
 

Milfoil

Third Age Expansive Animist.

No, seriously what Sulis says is pretty much where I stand too. Labels are confining and divisive. What happens when your beliefs expand beyond the label? What happens to others who have a different label?