As practitioners and sailors of the pagan world community, we often find ourselves with a lot of exciting terms for practices, new denominations and traditions.
Different words meaning different things to different people. Most sacred for the spiritual practice and often overlooked, is "Devotion"
We tend to pass it it because it seems like a very simple and obvious thing, but the impact this has in our spiritual development is profound and meaningful.
What does it mean to be a "devotee"?
What does a devotee does or does not?
The actual word has many meanings, but my two favorites are:
-An act performed out of love.
The first definition is the obvious. Despite our many different paths, backgrounds and cultures, languages and countries, we're in this space united in worship or a Goddess. Althought we're not an actual "Religion", we're here for a Deity.
This is were the second and most important definition comes to play: An act of Love.
This is the true essence of what unites us as a community, under the banner of the Covenant of Hekate and (hopefully) at the true service of the Torches of the Goddess Hekate herself.
We're here, ultimately, for love.
For love of the Goddess and the community, for love we erect altars in her honour, make offerings and libations, study her misteries, teach and lead Sanctuaries, perform her rituals and dedicate our lives to Her, in every sense.
We trust our children to the care of Kourotrophos, we seek her light in our lives in Phosphoros, We call upon her at the Crossroads of our lives as Trioditis.
Some of us even practice Magic at the hands of Enodia.
Every single act we perfom for her service, must be, ultimately, an act of love.
I am an of the opinion than a small practice of daily devotion is instrumental to the building of a relationship with Hekate (and any deity, spirit of daimon, for that matter) that is trully mutual. With this we open a line of communication, we develop a deep sense of communion and we strenghten our bond to a Goddess who's absolutely astonishing and who will in return, communicate back to us, in one way or another.
This does not mean the practice needs to be an elaborate daily ritual.
Cleaning her altar, setting up new flowers, offering incense and lighting up her sacred fire, is a very powerful way to say "I'm here, I'm dedicated".
The deities are alive, despite their Icons they themselves are not set in stone and do not mind if you show up with a tea candle, a glass of water and a stick of incense in a shoebox of an apartment. What they do care, is the consistent act of love for them. This is true for every spirit I've met wether they are Genius Loci, strange spirits I am not even able to start cathegorizing, Deities, or Ancestors.
Devotion is the absolutely fundamental reason we're gathered here.
Sadly, we dumb humans, often forget what it is, the true impact and meaning of it, as we focus on searching for self- agrandating titles or ego trips. But true service and devotion is often as simple as;
An act of love.
What does devotion mean to you?