Finding a Higher Power: My Story

Finding a Higher Power: My Story July 10, 2017

The question was posed “finding a higher power; what deities are important to me and how did I find them?”


cailleach altar rachel patterson
Cailleach altar

When I first starting learning about my witchcraft journey I chose to work with the Celtic pantheon. This was for the pure reason that I live in the UK, so it made sense to me to connect with deities from the land I live on.I read up and researched about all the different gods and goddesses and having had a great love of Fleetwood Mac I chose Rhiannon first.  Gradually I looked at and attempted to work with the different Celtic goddesses.  I say ‘attempted’ because although it was interesting I didn’t really connect with any of them in particular.  I also struggled a great deal to work with any of the gods.

There were one or two that I enjoyed learning about such as the Lady of Avalon and her various guises.  And eventually I even managed to make small connections with Belanos (after a visit to Bath), Sulis and even Merlin.  But nothing really resonated.


As my journey progressed I ventured out into other pantheons.  Usually because of whatever course or learning I was working with at the time and I worked with other deities such as Artemis.  But again, nothing really gelled.

Lightbulb moment

Then oh, it must be about ten years or so ago now I was reading a fiction book (Beneath a mountain moon by Silver Ravenwolf).  It is a magical tale that included a blue face hag goddess by the name of Cailleach Bheur and I was intrigued. After finishing the book her name kept appearing in other things I read.  Eventually I got the hint and did some research and spent some time meditating.  Then I started working with her and oh my goodness is she a kick butt goddess but exactly what I needed.  She has been with me ever since.

Struggling with the gods

I still struggled to work with the masculine energy but I decided it was OK and that I didn’t need to get stressed about it.

And of course, patience won out in the end.  About four or five years ago I kept seeing elephants everywhere.  Not literally because you don’t see many elephants walking down the high street in England.  But, on fabric designs, ornaments and on the TV.  It didn’t strike me at first until someone mentioned Ganesha.  So, of course I researched and read everything I could get my hands on.

finding a higher power rachel patterson

And now

Now…an ancient British goddess and a Hindu god aren’t the usual bedfellows but somehow, they seem to tolerate each other. (See my blog ‘Mix ‘n match deities’)  Ganesha has specific rituals and offerings and I do try to honour them but he is pretty easy going about it all as long as you give him sweet treats.

I have separate altars set up in my home dedicated to both of my deities – matron/patron whatever title you want to give them.  They are a major source of strength and guidance with an added dash of kick bottom if I need it.

Open the door for others

I still work with other deities from time to time.  Last year in fact I worked with twelve different goddesses, one each month when I was working through the Arc of the Goddess.  It was interesting to see the ones that came through to me, each one with a unique perspective and wisdom for me.

When I was writing my book Pagan Portals Hoodoo I had Papa Legba with me for an entire year sitting behind me laughing at my attempts…

I have always maintained that you need to be open to whomever comes your way.  It doesn’t matter who it is or what pantheon they belong to – they will be seeking you out for a reason…listen and learn from them.

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