Deciding upon Heathenry is decidedly anticlimactic. You don’t get an invite dropped off by a couple of shady-looking ravens, nor does a thunderclap bellow into the night. In fact, nothing happens at all. I always think of the character of Michael Scott from The Office shouting, “I declare…BANKRUPTCY!” as the most delightful way of declaring anything.
Well, almost nothing happens. Funny thing, that. I remember when I made the concrete decision to become a Heathen, I was sitting on a park bench on the Hamilton escarpment, and I said under my breath, “Alright, Odin. Let’s give this a try.” And I looked up, and just at that moment a raven flew overhead. I felt a lightness in my heart, and I laughed.
Make of that what you will. Being who I am, I later looked up local birds on the escarpment to see if there were in fact local ravens, and found out that there were. I later learned that in terms of religious experiences, I had experienced an Unverified Personal Gnosis, or UPG for short. Good gracious, but terminology can take the mystique out of anything.
So, my Unverified Personal Gnosis notwithstanding, it was up to me to figure out what to do next. I had done lots of research up to this point, but now was the time to start looking for direction. Time to do some rummaging around books and the Internet, I thought.