I have been feeling torn with myself , I love the gods and goddess and I love my inari which is a god/goddess of japan shintoism for harvest and well being . I feel most torn towards foxes cunning smart creatures who are loving and gentle . I feel as if I believe in them of all else . They have been my protectors since I was born , I have been kept safe by them as well . I want to believe this is inari's doing that the goddess does not wish harm upon her little kitsune which is what I have always called myself . Kitsune sometimes hearing my own name feels foreign to me. I feel like there is a wise being within me begging to be released. Yet i have a fear that this will scare off my family so i have kept this very private . Has anyone felt this way before. Is it right to feel this way ? I seek justice in life yet I do no wish to upset the gods or goddess with my love for both .
Well, for one, Inari is not a she. HE manifests as a SHE, but in almost every text Inari is a he. Therefore, refering to Inari as female/a goddess is actually rude, since Inari is by default a male who switches genders.
If you're seeking validation to the fact you think you have a fox within you like Naruto, no. You don't. I'm reserving what I would like to say, as this is my practice and is very offensive.
Thirdly, it's Shinto. Not Shinto Wiccan. Shinto. If you want to be Wicca and worship Inari, that's one thing, but Shinto is not Wicca nor will it ever be Wicca.
You should not feel torn between the two. I think it is perfectly acceptable to walk both paths. Shinto blends with other traditions very well, and it teaches us that we are descendents of the kami and to follow the path of Great Nature (Kannagara). To many Shinto practicioners, gods and goddesses from other traditions are just other kami.
I am also a follower of Inari, and follow the practices of the Grand Tsubaki Shrine. I have also studied, practiced, and worshipped with other Wiccans, Druids, Buddhists, Teutonic Pagans, and Hellenistic Pagans. As for her form, she has many. While it is true that she is usually referred to as male in historical texts, I doubt he/she cares which you see her as, as long as you are attributing her with the love and respect she deserves.
Inari followers sometimes attract kitsune, which can be both a blessing and a curse. They are not that different from shamanic totem spirits, and they often serve as Inari-sama's messengers. They are also a few references to them possessing people, which is why it's important to keep the viewpoint of them being seperate beings in mind. It is ok to identify with them, but don't lose yourself to fox-madness where you can't tell the difference between them and yourself.
All that aside, I guess would have expected more tolerance and less elitism from the other posters. We have no right to tell each other what we should or shouldn't believe. I'm sure there are other ways to feel good about yourself than to lash out at a person who came here for help and understanding.
Aside from upsetting any deities, I think you should also consider the cultural consequences that could ensue from your desire to blend these different views... I'm not an expert on Shinto/Shintoism, but from what little I do understand of it, it is a very culturally linked religion/way of life. Therefor, those beliefs and views would be exclusive, and by picking and choosing what you like from Shinto and mixing it with what you like and feel with your other beliefs, you strip Shinto of its significance. Hence, that's why this post has left some people in this thread feeling personally offended. There's nothing wrong with wanting to blend practices to create a more cohesive belief system for yourself, but there's a right way to do it...and this probably isn't the best. Do your research, branch out to TRUE and culturally linked practitioners of Shintoism, and immerse yourself. Don't just look for what you like/don't like about it, or what fits within your preexisting framework. Aside from not wanting to upset your gods/goddesses, also make sure you do justice by those from whom you "borrow" beliefs from.
I love both Wicca and Shinto, as said by one of the other commentators Shinto has been Synchronized with other faiths and Shinto is open to other faiths.
Now I am working on Synchronizing the two Shinto can't really be practiced outside of Japan as you can't honor the kami of Mt.Fuji in America or the Emperor (he isn't honored as much even in Japan anymore anyways).
Here are some similarities as pointed out by Green Shinto:
Both celebrate the blessings of nature in the seasonal round. Both share diversity in local practice. Both could be said to be ?invented traditions? in that they are modern constructions of supposed ancient traditions. Both use the outdoors to conduct nature-based rituals (shrine buildings were a later development in Shinto, and rituals in many cases remain open to the elements.)
If I was to point out differences they would be:
- Shinto: Sun Goddess;Wicca: Sun God
- Shinto: Moon God;Wicca:Moon Goddess
- The holy days differ to a point
- Shinto holds to an afterlife ruled by Yomi, while Wicca believes in reincarnation but it can be said that those who practice Shinto-Buddhism would have to hold to a form of reincarnation.
I am unable to answer your main question, but would like to offer you support in how you have felt. Being a wiccan is about our unity with nature and the animals around us, and there are many wiccans I know that identify as something known as otherkin. It's a spiritual feeling, usually, like a part of you is an animal, or that your were an animal in your past life. It is not crazy or delusional, and may I remind certain people in this thread that so long as the original poster is bringing no harm to themselves or others, you are to let them do as they wish. Otherkin people KNOW they are physically human, with human needs, and so long as you know that you must still walk on two legs and eat cooked meat, I see no reason to deny you acceptance. I think its lovely that you are so connected to nature on such a spiritual level. I, myself, am otherkin, and think that many people show disgust because they think we are ill, or unaware that we are born human. Please don't let them deter you, my friend. Do as you wish so long as you are harming nobody.
First Off, Never mind the haters. Haters gonna Hate.
Second I once asked Reverend Barrish of the Grand Tsubaki Shine in Granite Falls, WA, "Can one practice Shinto and be a Christian?" his reply was, "Yes, because Shinto can blend with any religion. However, Christianity will not allow the practice of Shinto."
Third, Don't get lost in your self. You are here in the physical plane. YOU are here. You are You not a Fox. YOU were born to be YOU and only YOU.
Fourth, When in doubt follow the KISS method. Keep It Simple Stupid. Don't over complicate things. Just be yourself.
Lastly, Careful how you phrase things. This post does make you sound a bit nutz.