One passionate interest I have explored fully… the occult. I always found it fascinating, even in high school, but in college it really grabbed my attention and has been something I’ve stayed engaged with ever since. So engaged that I’ve deliberately introduced non-Pagans into my life and pursued a few non-Pagan interests to balance myself out, as I realized how very much over-engagement produces tunnel vision. Pagans with similar views show up at these things, more often than not.
It’s still something I love – it has everything that speaks to me: herbalism/botany, poetry and active encouragement of creative thought (in the healthy sectors, anyway,) myth, lore – and again, in the healthy sectors, you are encouraged to try things even if they might fail. That last part is the real reason so much of the world is terrified of all occultism. It’s why there’s so much artwork that intersects with the occult, too. Art is a magical practice, a healing session, and way of alchemizing fresh conversations.
As to another person so engaged, I can’t think of anyone I know who is living. Maybe Da Vinci – he was the kind of guy who liked to try things, and didn’t feel overly committed to one discipline to the exclusion of others. He’s been “speaking” to me a lot lately, and I think I should read up on him – I am of the new generation of “more than one thing” and only the fearful and unimaginative believe that a person should limit themselves to one interest only.