It was an interesting conversation during my lunch time that day. To get away from my desk, I took my cup of Ramen and my bottle of Gatorade out to a picnic table near my building. After a few minutes, a student approached me and struck up a conversation.
“You’re Tommy Elf” aren’t you?”
I was a touch stunned, this is not a name I am known for on campus. I slowly nodded, and indicated the seat opposite me when he asked if he could sit.
“I listen to your podcast all the time…”
I groaned inwardly. Its not the first time someone has realized who I was…even despite the fact that my little Pagan podcast is not all that well known – even after nine years of battering people’s ears. I slowly nodded as I put another forkful of noodles dried during the Ming dynasties into my mouth.
He carried on like a squeeing fanboy for a few minutes, but eventually came to a serious question that he felt I could answer.
“What’s it like to be claimed by a God? Or even a Goddess if you might know…”
I held my right hand up for a moment, to indicate that I was going to answer him – but only after I finished off the extremely salty broth that my Ming noodles had created from their Keurig water bath. When finished, I flipped my cup into the trash barrel, and turned to him. Worded slightly different from our conversation, this is what I essentially told him. And its only reworded because I don’t have a flash-card memory in my brain.
When Crow decided that I was a new interesting “shiny” to put His
attention to, I didn’t believe it for a moment. I’m not a remarkable person. I don’t have a particularly overwhelming charisma. There’s no way that I could even be close to being considered anywhere in the top twenty percent of the smartest Pagans about. I am truly about as ordinary as one can get without being Charlie Brown. So I spent a good deal of time just pushing back and saying “No, I’m not.”
And then one day, during a meditation, I came to realize that I could view this as a challenge. I could almost *dare* Crow to accept me. He’s a Trickster God, so this must be a trick, right? So I’m going to throw all my chips into the pot, and call. In a way, it was similar to the moment that Jesus Christ accepts his fate of being crucified during his one-way conversation with God during the song “Gethsemane (I Only Want to Say)” from the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar.
Can you show me now that I would not be killed in vain?
Show me just a little of your omnipresent brain
Show me there’s a reason for your wanting me to die
You’re far too keen on where and how and not so hot on why
Alright I’ll die
Just, just watch me die
See how, see how I die
See how I die
Yeah. Pick up the gauntlet from a God. Smart move. But that’s a lot of the “how” aspect of things. What is like to be claimed by a God? Its not like having your best buddy in your pocket 24 hours a day. In a way, its like having someone constantly peeking over your shoulder, and making clucking sounds with their tongue at some of your decisions and moments. But that’s when Crow is there. And when I do something that is a bit disapproving or disappointing. There’s always the off chance that something needs to be done NOW and by YOU. That’s something that’s only happened once, but I know others whose patron deities can be a bit more forceful.
There’s also “good” stuff to go with the relationship as well. I get visions of places to visit that wind up being beneficial to my Spiritual Path. My trip to Mesa Verde was a result of one of these visions. And the resultant moment on the side of a cliff trail to see a glyph was one of the most intense moments I have ever had. A side trip coming back from Montana provided an extremely intense moment with Crow at Medicine Wheel, during the first few months that I had accepted the relationship I have. And I have no idea what to expect along these lines going into the future, but my visions still come to me.
I call it being “claimed” by Crow, but the reality is that as with anything else in the world around us – its a relationship. And its one that He has willing provided to me, and one I am willing to provide in return to Him. I can always say no…I can always change my mind. But I really don’t want to….
God, Thy will is hard but You hold every card
I will drink Your cup of poison
Nail me to Your cross and break me
Bleed me, beat me, kill me, take me now
Before I change my mind