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I found meaning and healing in Paganism


Zang909

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I’m starting this topic because as a polytheist, I don’t usually get to see any spiritual posts that speak to me. In fact, just looking around one could be forgiven for thinking that only Christians use spirituality to help them through difficult times. We Pagans are often quiet about our faith because we sometimes, even in these enlightened times, face harassment or persecution.

 

For years, what I thought was depression, combined with my struggles with antidepressants, were such major factors in my life and who I was. During all this time, however, my spirituality was also one of the biggest things that makes me who I am. After my wife and kids, my spirituality and my relationship with the Gods are the most important things in my life. So why keep that to myself? Even on the Surviving Antidepressants board, you all know me primarily as someone who is struggling to overcome withdrawal from antidepressants when that is not nearly the biggest part of who I am. I'm not defined by my relationship with these medications. I am a husband and a father and a blessed child of the Gods.

 

 

I’m not here to argue with anyone or convert anyone; I’m just here to let other Pagans know that they are not alone, and to share with anyone else who’s interested the fact that we Pagans also find healing in our wide range of spiritual paths and practices. I likely won't be sharing any quotes from any religious scriptures because most forms of Paganism aren't really based on revealed texts. But that doesn't mean that I don't have any inspirational quotes. 

 

Here I'll share with you one of my favorites. It's an excerpt from a larger piece by D.H. Lawrence. I don't believe that Lawrence would have considered himself Pagan, but I find that this portion of his work speaks to me both as a Pagan and as someone working on healing:

 

 

This is what I believe:

 

That I am I.
That my soul is a dark forest.
That my known self will never be more than a little clearing in the forest.
That gods, strange gods, come forth from the forest into the clearing of my known self, and then go back.
That I must have the courage to let them come and go.
That I will never let mankind put anything over me, but that I will try always to recognize and submit to the gods in me and the gods in other men and women.

 

- D.H. Lawrence, from Studies in Classic American Literature

 

 

Circa 1995 put on Paxil; Tried various meds over the years in an effort to get away from Paxil's side effects

06/29/13 Switched from 30mg Paxil to 10mg Lexapro

10/24/13 7.5mg Lexapro

12/01/13 6.25mg Lexapro

01/01/14 5mg Lexapro

03/01/14 3.75mg Lexapro

04/01/14 2.5mg Lexapro

05/01/14 1.25mg Lexapro

05/28/14 Med-Free

02/27/15 300mg Neurontin twice daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

May 2015: 600mg Neurontin twice daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

08/05/15: 600mg Neurontin twice daily, 30mg Paxil daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

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  • Administrator

Thank you, Zang.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I'm a Unitarian and often feel my spirituality goes unacknowledged on this site for want of a 'Christian' affiliation. Love your idea.  Thank-you.

As always, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! A proud supporter of the 10% (or slower) rule.

 

Requip - 3/16 ZERO  Total time on 25 years.

 

Lyrica: 8/15 ZERO Total time on 7 or 8 yrs.

BENZO FREE 10/13 (started tapering 7/10)  Total time on 25 years.

 

Read my intro thread here, and check the about me section.  "No matter how cynical you get, it's almost impossible to keep up." Lily Tomlin

 

 

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  • Moderator

My training as a WICCIAN High Priest has been one of the most valuable things I have had for surviving this journey of Paxil WD.  It helped me through my "Seven Years of Pain" and all the ups and downs that life has thrown at me.  To me it is a natural spirituality that fits seamlessly into my life and world view.  If you can live it with out trying to then it is a prefect fit.  The main tenant "less it harm none, do what you will" is the most freeing and most restrictive guideline for life that I have ever found and I wish more people would take it to heart.

 

Blessed Be

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Hi, brassmonkey. I was Wiccan many years ago, but found that ultimately my path lay elsewhere. I'm glad that Wicca has been helpful to you and that it has helped with your healing. I met many good folks who were Wiccan, plus I will always be thankful for the way that it helped me to change how I view Deity, the world, and myself.

Circa 1995 put on Paxil; Tried various meds over the years in an effort to get away from Paxil's side effects

06/29/13 Switched from 30mg Paxil to 10mg Lexapro

10/24/13 7.5mg Lexapro

12/01/13 6.25mg Lexapro

01/01/14 5mg Lexapro

03/01/14 3.75mg Lexapro

04/01/14 2.5mg Lexapro

05/01/14 1.25mg Lexapro

05/28/14 Med-Free

02/27/15 300mg Neurontin twice daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

May 2015: 600mg Neurontin twice daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

08/05/15: 600mg Neurontin twice daily, 30mg Paxil daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

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I'm a Unitarian and often feel my spirituality goes unacknowledged on this site for want of a 'Christian' affiliation. Love your idea.  Thank-you.

 

Thanks for dropping in, Skyler. I'm glad to see a wide range of spiritual beliefs and practices represented here, just as in the world at large.

Circa 1995 put on Paxil; Tried various meds over the years in an effort to get away from Paxil's side effects

06/29/13 Switched from 30mg Paxil to 10mg Lexapro

10/24/13 7.5mg Lexapro

12/01/13 6.25mg Lexapro

01/01/14 5mg Lexapro

03/01/14 3.75mg Lexapro

04/01/14 2.5mg Lexapro

05/01/14 1.25mg Lexapro

05/28/14 Med-Free

02/27/15 300mg Neurontin twice daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

May 2015: 600mg Neurontin twice daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

08/05/15: 600mg Neurontin twice daily, 30mg Paxil daily, .25mg to .50mg Xanax as needed

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Wicca provides me a good base from which to work.  As with all true spirituality, a person can't rely solely on the dogma of any one "religion" but must sift through it all and find the bits and pieces that fit their beliefs and meld them together into a cohesive framework for life.  Once you dig into various belief systems it is amazing how similar they are to each other at the basic levels.  It is when you get into the dictates of "you WILL believe this or that"  that the trouble and intolerance starts.  To me it is a truly individual relationship between a person and the divine, if you hold the same beliefs/values as others so much the better.  But you can't make them believe exactly what you do.

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I'm a Unitarian and often feel my spirituality goes unacknowledged on this site for want of a 'Christian' affiliation. Love your idea.  Thank-you.

 

How odd.  I'm Christian and I've often felt that I'm in a tiny minority on this site.  I've had other Christians contact me by PM because they felt the same way and were uneasy about expressing their beliefs on the forum.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Wicca provides me a good base from which to work.  As with all true spirituality, a person can't rely solely on the dogma of any one "religion" but must sift through it all and find the bits and pieces that fit their beliefs and meld them together into a cohesive framework for life.  Once you dig into various belief systems it is amazing how similar they are to each other at the basic levels.  It is when you get into the dictates of "you WILL believe this or that"  that the trouble and intolerance starts.  To me it is a truly individual relationship between a person and the divine, if you hold the same beliefs/values as others so much the better.  But you can't make them believe exactly what you do.

 

I wish there was a like button here.  I don't think there is a name for my patchwork of beliefs, but I agree many systems have similarities in their basic teachings.  It's a very individual thing for me, I've avoided joining any kind of organised religion for that reason of feeling like you have to conform.

2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 Jul 2.9mg 16 Sep 2.8mg 25 Oct 2.7mg 23 Oct 2.6mg 24 Dec 2.5mg

2021   29 Aug 2.4mg   15 Nov 2.3mg

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