Vision is the virtue that resonates most with me of the pagan virtues listed by ADF. This is not because it best describes me, or is any more important than the others, but because it is one that I might not have ever thought of on my own, yet it’s import is clear to me.

Vision, I believe, is the virtue by which we exercise control over our destinies. It sounds like a bit much to say, but I believe it is true.

When I think of vision, I don’t think of oracles, omens or divination. Instead, I think of the faculty of human thought to imagine where we want to be in twenty-four hours time, or in a month, or a year. Vision is the faculty that allows me to imagine myself completing the Dedicant’ Path, and to understand the importance of working towards it.

I suppose that knowledge, experience, and wisdom are those qualities which allow us to choose the best course of actions in a given situation. But the best course of actions can only be known if the desired outcome of the actions can be defined. And only vision allows us to define desired outcomes.

It is important here to separate vision from fantasy. Or, perhaps, to point out that vision is fantasy informed by wisdom. Vision helps us defined desired outcomes which are achievable and — in the case of longer goal horizons or the desire for desired outcomes that are drastically different from the current situation — the establishment of intermediary goals.

In short, vision is our ability to decide where we want to be (informed, of course, by other virtues helping us decide if it is what we really want), so that other virtues may help us achieve that goal.

The above is a first draft of my attempt to understand vision as a virtue. It reflects my understanding of vision before I spend time researching it as a specifically pagan virtue and will eventually inform the essay I submit as part of my Dedicant’s Path.


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