So, okay, I've dealt with being a dyspraxic, candle-phobic Pagan, and I thought that that was big. It isn't really though, because I'm Quagan, not Wiccan. I'm deeply influenced by Wicca, but I'm not Wiccan and I never will be. But, anyway, I still aim to live by the Wiccan Rede, and to me, that's the most important part. I mean, "An ye harm none, do as ye will" - who can argue with that? It's beautiful and it's true.
Anyway, the OCD - now that is bigger - especially the hygiene obsessions. How can you hold Quaker/Pagan beliefs and values and then do totally the opposite? I feel disconnected from Mother Earth because I am afraid to touch Her. The whole eco thing is a problem, and it's hard to instantly overcome it. Yes, I know that washing your hands every five minutes, using tumble driers, using vast quantities of cleaning wipes, etc are all totally wrong. And I can go on about the fact that I don't drive or go on foreign holidays and various other things, but that's not really the point. The things is: guilt. When I was into going to LDS and C. of E. churches, and into Christianity (apart from the fact that I always believed in the female Divine, etc), guilt was such a massive thing for me. Repentance - yes, in a way, that was perfect for me, because I want to punish myself constantly for not being good enough and messing up throughout my life. I like that Quakerism and Paganism doesn't have the same emphasis on guilt - but then I have all these issues, and I think that really I have as much Quaker guilt and Pagan guilt as I ever had Christian guilt, and I don't want to go into that. I want to fight my OCD and I want to fight my guilt feelings, too. Regretting the past is unavoidable, but I just have to dwell on it less. And stuff that I know I'm still doing wrong in my life, I need to work towards correcting or improving. Who is perfect, anyway?
I hope that I will go back to Quaker meetings eventually. That is still one of my ambitions. But I'm not so sure that Pagan Quakers go down well in Basingstoke, UK. I just know that I believe what I believe and I'm proud of what I believe, so I guess that they either accept me as I am or they don't - but, anyway, that is a whole issue in itself, which maybe I'll return to in a future blog post.