I get a lot of messages from people asking about deities reaching out to them. How can they tell if a deity wants their attention? How can they tell who it is? How can they verify if a deity is reaching out to them? Can they still worship if that deity hasn’t reached out to them?
And I feel kind of bad, because my answer always come across as a more elaborate version of “You either know or you don’t, but what’s it matter anyway?” So I wan’t to try and organize my thoughts on this a bit.
How can I tell if a deity is trying to get my attention?
It depends entirely on you, and the deity in question. The way any deity approaches a mortal is going to be different from one person to the next. So even with the same deity approaching multiple people, there are differences among each one. With different deities doing the approaching, the differences are likely to be vastly different. Some people experience dreams or visions. Some people just seem to notice a bunch of stuff drawing their attention to that deity. Some people feel a sudden connection and the desire to pursue it. Some people feel like there’s a presence with them, guiding or protecting them. The list goes on and on.
Apollo may give you straight up visions because he knows you can handle it and that’s the best way to communicate with you. The Morrigan may cause crows or ravens to appear around your house because she knows it’ll catch your interest. Thor may call to you with an intense feeling during a thunder storm because it’s the only way you can hear him. But alternatively, Apollo may call to me with a field full of wildflowers in bloom and a feeling in the pit of my stomach. The Morrigan may feel like I need to turn my TV to the news just in time to see images of war in order to find my way to her. Thor may call to me through divination because that’s how I listen to entities. It’s going to be different for every single person, and with every single deity.
How Can I tell which deity is calling to me?
Look at the signs. Are you seeing a bunch of ocean related stuff? Might be an ocean deity is trying to get your attention. Storms? Might be a storm deity. You can try divination, but deities don’t always answer. You probably just have to knuckle down and do some research until it clicks. Sometimes it’s clear as day, other times it takes a lot of work and time. I played this ridiculous game of “guess who” with Dionysus for over a year before I figured out who he was.
How Can I verify a deity is reaching out to me, and it’s not just my imagination?
Honestly, you can’t. You can try divination, you can ask others to divine or decipher signs for you, but none of that is proof. This is the same concept that leads back to the famous question of “How do I know that deities are real?” It’s belief, not knowledge. And I don’t think it matters if they’re “real” or not, because the experience we have, the lessons we learn, and the way we grow from the stories, lessons, and perceived existence of deities is real. And even if you’re perceiving signs from a deity where there aren’t any, it can still lead to a fulfilling relationship with a deity. Which leads to the next question.
Can I still worship if that deity hasn’t reached out to me?
Yes. Absolutely. A thousand times over.
With the only exception being closed cultures. If you feel drawn to a deity from a closed culture then you need to find the appropriate religious leader to seek their advice, and respect their decision on whether or not you can join up.
Beyond that, you do NOT need to wait for a deity to reach out to you. Many people never feel a deity reach out to them. People follow a religion and a deity because it means something to them, not necessarily because they felt divine intervention. Some people experience something that they perceive as a sign, but many more don’t. The idea that you must receive a sign in order to worship is elitist, and a way for some people to put themselves above others. A person who’s drawn to a deity isn’t any more special than one who seeks that deity out of their own accord.