When I tell other pagans about a spiritual experience that has made me feel upset, angry, frustrated or confused, they always assume it scared me. And it always confuses me that they think it scared me. (Not to mention that it really annoys me.)
Of all the spiritual experiences I’ve had so far, only one was scary. It happened in that time of the night that Loki once called “the core hours”, which is between 4 am and 6 am.* I was in a hypnogogic state, and I suddenly heard footsteps. It sounded like they were coming from “elsewhere” somehow, made by someone not on this material plane, and slowly coming closer. The footsteps sounded heavy, not as if they were made by someone with a heavy body, but with a heavy presence, and this someone was also walking with what sounded like a heavy staff (the sound it made was too light for a cane).
The closer these footsteps came, the more I got filled with dread, and I just knew it was Odin approaching. It scared the crap out of me, and after struggling hard, I managed to tear myself completely awake. I’m not sure if I actually sensed Odin’s presence/power, since that’s something I’m otherwise unable to do, or if He made me feel that way on purpose. Odin’s been around me later, along with Loki, but if I hadn’t been told, I wouldn’t have had any idea that He was.
Why is it assumed that my spiritual experiences made me feel frightened?
Is that what a natural reaction to those experiences should or would be?
Loki says I’m courageous, but I don’t feel like that. I know there are many forms of courage, but I always think of it as being afraid of something but facing it or doing it anyway.
What does my lack of fear make me then?
Am I too naive? Or am I just stupid?
*In his novel “Something Wicked This Way Comes”, Ray Bradbury called 4 am the Dark Tide of the Soul. Others have called it True Midnight. It’s the time of the day/night were you are most psychologically vulnerable. If you can’t sleep, the darkest thoughts always seem to come around that time. This I know from experience. It’s also the time most people die a natural death, as if the tie between body and soul is at it’s weakest then.