happydog1960: (Default)
2012-12-26 02:54 pm

do as thou wilt, but what dost thou do in thy doing?

 I subscribe to a page on F***b**k called "Liber Oz," which is mostly pictures. Some of them are intriguing paintings, drawings, and photos that have fascinating occult overtones. But, a bunch of the pics are just tacky, porny pics of 20-somethings with bad tattoos and black panties. This hits on one of my sore points.

I am not a prude by any means; "lust, enjoy all things of sense and rapture," the book says. But I also read: "Be not animal; refine thy rapture! If thou drink, drink by the eight and ninety rules of art: if thou love, exceed by delicacy; and if thou do aught joyous, let there be subtlety therein!" 

Now of course I don't want to end up all pestilential. But it does seem to me that there is a really popular idea out there that Thelema is just one long wine-and-drug-fueled orgy. It seems, though, if that's the public image that gets out there, that's the kind of person that's going to gravitate to it. Far be it from me to judge, but this is something I think about. 

If I am interested in a path, I'm interested in it because it will lead to enlightenment or realization. (Laugh if you must.) Certainly I agree that enlightenment and realization can happen in a lot of ways, but I insist on enlightenment and realization being more than just "Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die." I don't care for fatalism or cynicism very much. I believe in living life to the fullest, but I think that also includes restraint and awareness. Anyway, that's what I think, and that and $2.00 will get you a coffee. 
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-12-10 01:07 am

perfection and reality

There is no such thing as perfection, but that in itself is perfect. At no time, at no point, is the universe going to do exactly what I want it to do. If that happened, where would be the fun? I would know everything. There would be no surprises and no delights. Pure predictability would reign, in boredom, forever and ever, amen. That means unpredictability is the rule. In response to this, I try to see the universe, and my relationship to it, as a game. (I don’t always succeed, but that’s another story.)

Sure, the game is frustrating. It can be utterly maddening if I try to play it by imposing my own rules on it. But the game may not recognize my rules. I can’t run this game, very possibly because there isn’t even a game in reality. The game is only a concept that helps me engage with that-which-is, as-it-is.

The more I work to engage with That-Which-Is, As-It-Is – the more I live life on life’s terms, as they say in AA – the closer I get to the ultimate secret that is no secret, because it was here all along.

The game can be a great distraction. It can distract me from engaging with the Divine, especially if I actually believe in the game. I do my best to remember that there is no game, really. In a sense, I invoke it, and I can banish it. It’s only a servant, a concept to help me engage with That-Which-Is. When that game, that concept, stops being useful, it can be discarded – or should be discarded. 

When that time comes, when the game stops being useful and needs to be discarded, there is a choice. I can choose to cling to it, or I can choose to let it go. My choice. 

happydog1960: (Default)
2012-12-08 12:49 pm

(no subject)

 OK, I don't want to be a crabby ass just because my leg hurts today, but if I post something supporting a cause on Facebook, how does it help that particular cause? Are the Powers That Be going to look at my Facebook and say, "By God, this guy is RIGHT! We SHOULD legalize frop!"

Even if I am in favor of legalizing frop, it's going to be far more effective if I write or call my senator or congress member and at least let them know that I am in favor of frop legalization.

And then there are the cases where I can't do anything about what I am concerned about, where the final decision is in the hands of someone that I have no influence over. What does my posting about it on Facebook do? It just lets people know that I support frop legalization.

But if most of my friends support frop legalization, what exactly does that do besides let my friends know I'm in solidarity with them? And that's OK, of course - I want to support my friends - but I have no illusions that a thing I post on Facebook is going to make any difference whatsoever. 
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-08-19 02:30 pm

Prayer of Renewal

My Patroness, my Maitresse de ma Tete, is Kali.

Ghosts cannot abide me. 

My power is the power to guide, to make boundaries, and to divide rightly. 

I proclaim DIVISION, I proclaim BOUNDARIES, I proclaim FIRE. 

I invoke my GODDESS,

who is no ‘mysterious one,’ (empty words from empty mouths),

She who is Queen above all the worlds, 

And whose fire lit the stars 

Long before an ape became a man, 

Long before a man became a tribe,

Long before a tribe became a village,

Long before a village became a town, 

Long before a town became a city,

Long before a city became a kingdom, 

She was, She was, She was, 

And the burning of Her worship is in the fire-heart

Of me. Oh heart, my Heart, 

How I yearn for a glimpse of Your bright steel. 

How I yearn for the touch of Your hand. 

How I yearn for Your glory of light,

And to dance with You, I who have never

danced with any other, 

I spin and turn and yearn 

For You. To You. 

Help me now, my Mother, my Sister, my Lover, my GODDESS,

Help me now to divide rightly, to use the blade well, 

to set fire to that which is waste and to burn,

to set boundaries against foolishness and emptiness,

to bring my fire, granted from You, back to Your fire

to reignite, to re-imagine, to renew. 

Mahakali, Mahakali, Mahakali,

Mother and Destroyer of all things and all worlds

in their time,

I renew and re-offer myself to You,

In the name of Fire and Sacrifice,

in the name of Love and Power,

in the name of Creation and Destruction,

in the name of Chaos

and in the name of Order,

I, even I, stand before You

and renew my Love before Love.

Amen.

happydog1960: (Default)
2012-06-30 01:35 am

People of the Book

One of the things I find tiresome about atheists is that they are as much a People of the Book as any Christian they go after. This has never been more apparent to me than in the recent to-do over Leah Libresco’s conversion to Catholicism. Any commentary simply renews the long-standing dispute between atheists and Christians, which consists of both sides declaring what they are not, and then declaring what the other side is. Then, out come the books; the Bible and apologist theology on one side, and on the other side, Dawkins, Hitchens, Sam Harris. And then out come the philosophy books, and the science texts, and quickly the argument devolves into either sordid name calling, or the kind of discussion that you would have to have a doctorate in the history of Western philosophy to even be able to participate in on the idiot level.

Either way, it’s book vs. book, with the one side basing its beliefs on one set of texts and the other side basing its beliefs on another set of texts, and with very little else going on besides a bunch of quoting and arguing over quotes.

So as much as atheists dislike bibliomancy, they practice it themselves. Both viewpoints depend on texts to bolster their arguments, and their arguments are based entirely on texts. The Christians want to save people from Hell. Atheists want to save people from Christianity. It’s basically Spy vs Spy without the bombs, but with philosophy and theology texts instead.

Personally I am glad I am a nonparticipant in this battle. I don’t think it’s important, either from a Pagan or a Thelemite point of view, to “believe in God(s).” As Terry Pratchett observed,

“Wizards don’t believe in gods in the same way that most people don’t find it necessary to believe in, say, tables. They know they’re there, they know they’re there for a purpose, they’d probably agree that they have a place in a well-organised universe, but they wouldn’t see the point of believing, of going around saying “O great table, without whom we are as naught.” Anyway, either the gods are there whether you believe in them or not, or exist only as a function of the belief, so either way you might as well ignore the whole business and, as it were, eat off your knees.”

I’m not quite at that level, but I think that it’s useful to remember that belief in the supernatural is subjective, not objective, and there is no use trying to prove it, either with or without texts. Either people have experienced the supernatural, or they have not. If they have experienced the supernatural, then one of two things happens: they become curious about it, and start to explore, or they want to find an explanation for it that will put paid to it and allow them to keep on doing whatever it was they were doing when the supernatural thing
happened to them.

In both cases, fortunately and unfortunately, these explanations usually end up somewhere in books. And people who go searching start looking in books. And like a great swamp with pools of quicksand, that is where many explorers of the unknown die – in a morass of bookery.

I have nothing against books or literacy, but the knowledge that is contained in texts is only fine-tuned through experience. If someone believes that there is no god and no divine essence at all, bully for you. Live that way, do it with all your heart. Don’t stand around arguing with theists; go skydiving, have wild sex, get a medical degree, bake cookies, DO things. Similarly, if you are a Christian, then DO Christian things like feed the poor and help the homeless, or fight against venality and corruption; run the money changers out of the temple. But for God or No-God’s sake, stop standing around arguing and talking blah blah blah forever and ever.

To me, regardless of anyone’s religion, that sounds like the worst sort of Hell I could think of.

happydog1960: (Default)
2012-05-14 12:03 am

unrecoverable

There are some things that are not recoverable for me. They are my personal equivalent of the swastika. Yes, we all know that the swastika is a good luck symbol in many cultures around the world, and originally represents the sun and its rays, but the symbol has been so damaged that  it is non-recoverable. Certain things are like that for me.

I was trying to listen to the most recent "Elemental Castings" and I had to stop because I cannot get past my reaction to the word "queer." Queer, to me, is a hate word. In high school and especially in junior high, I was bullied a lot, and one of the words most often used to bully me was the word "queer." I have no positive connotations for that word and I cannot reclaim it. For me, the word has the same weight and ugliness as "n****r." To hear people saying it over and over doesn't make it better, it makes it worse; I become unable to hear what the person is saying due to a rising tide of anger and shame, an inner voice that screams "STOP SAYING THAT," whether I want it to or not. I can't recontextualize it or make it better in my mind. I can't fix it. The word is an abomination to me.

One of the other things that is hard for me is teasing. I do not come from a family who teases. My family does not tease each other or other people at all. They never have. The first time I ran into teasing was in school, and I didn't understand it and had no response. But it was used to harm, mock and belittle. Teasing was used as a weapon on me. It hurt a lot, and still does. Unless I have a really clear context for teasing, that is, unless I am looking you in the face and I know you are joking, I react badly to teasing. I don't know how to take it. I react to it by withdrawing, as I did in school, or by lashing out in anger, which I also did when I was driven to extremes and I couldn't escape the teasing. That happened a lot more than I want to talk about.

This is how I am. I don't make any apologies for how I am. I have reasons to be the way I am. I don't expect the world to cater to my flaws, but I want to explain why I don't do these things. I think that no matter what I say, people are going to use the word "queer," and I will always flinch and withdraw. I will never be absolutely sure what to say or do when someone teases me, especially in a context where I can't see your face. And honestly, even if I can see your face, even if I can see you smiling, there will be a part of me that will not read your smile as friendship; it will be read as the kind of smile that junior high and high school bullies get on their faces when they realize they have found a victim. Not the smile of a friend, but the smirk of a bully.

I don't know why I am laying this out in public, but I felt like I had to. I don't expect the world to change to accommodate me. But I want people to know why I react the way I do.
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-05-12 02:54 pm

Facebook: facepalm

1) Bitching about North Carolina's Amendment One: 38 responses.
2) Bitching about Mitt Romney being a bully: 11 responses.
3) Crazy man screaming in the street: 11 responses.
4) Bitching about people not liking cave girls: 34 responses

5) Post about reading Hermetic literature: 0 responses
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-05-12 01:58 am

all hermetic up in the hizzouse

I have been reading a lot of Hermetic writing. The reason they call it Hermetic is that it tends to be based around the semi-fictional character of Hermes Trismegistus, "Hermes Thrice-Great," who was a teacher, philosopher, and occultist who may or may not have lived around the first, second, or third centuries C.E. 

Another contributing factor is that a lot of the Hermetic writing is available at practically no cost, since much of it was made available in the U.S. around the turn of the previous century. The spiritual atmosphere in America at the turn of the previous century is fascinating. That was when Hinduism and Buddhism first became introduced into the U.S. in a big way. Spiritualism blossomed; Arthur Conan Doyle came out in favor of fairies and life after death; the Jehovah's Witnesses sprang out of the apocalyptic ground; reincarnation and spirit communication became fashionable topics. A lot of material was written by those engaging in new spiritual pursuits, much of which has been unfortunately forgotten.

But a lot of it is available for free, or nearly nothing, as e-books. And having acquired the Nook Tablet on my birthday, well, why not explore, right? 

My odyssey started with The Kybalion, which is a fascinating read. The current edition put out by Tarcher Penguin makes a very interesting argument that instead of being written by "Three Initiates," the book was actually written by one man, William Walker Atkinson. It then gives a brief bio of Atkinson. He was a surprising man. He wrote a lot of books, many having to do with what was called "New Thought" in those days. The Kybalion is his contribution to Hermetic thought, and it really does summarize a lot of concepts well. As I read it, I was struck by how many things people have borrowed from The Kybalion and passed off as their own. The Kybalion has definitely been the source for a lot of New Age literature, and gone uncredited. The Kybalion freely references other material, and so I went off on a tangent.

Right now I am in the middle of The Virgin Of The World, by "Hermes Trismegistus," as translated by Anna Kingsford and Edward Maitland. Now those two, of themselves, are fascinating characters, who I will not touch on here. (I do encourage a Google search, and even if you just look at their bios on Wikipedia, it's very interesting.) In any case, Kingsford and Maitland translated The Virgin in 1884. The Virgin of the World is not a contiguous work, but is actually a collection of writings attributed to Hermes Trismegistus and/or his son, Asclepios.

The history of how The Virgin of the World was rescued from destruction is interesting in and of itself, but I won't go into that here. What is important is that even though the Kingsford/Maitland translation has its problems, it's absolutely clear as I read it that most modern occultism has borrowed very heavily indeed from The Virgin. I have encountered ideas there that I see clearly reflected in the work of Aleister Crowley and Victor Anderson, among many others. And even better: this material dates from the 2nd and 3rd centuries C.E. I love the concept of continuity there, and I love the feeling of reading the older material and getting the deep sensation of truth from it.

I don't always understand all of it, either due to Kingsford and Maitland's late 19th century phrasing or because it is an odd and obscure, arcane text. But the sense of continuity, the delight in my being able to read the same ideas that stimulated discussion and meditation in those times and even today, is testament to the power of writing and the worthiness of teaching.

I was having a discussion with a friend who owned an occult store at one time. I asked her what people asked for the most when they came into the store. It  was a great discussion, and eventually she said that all the things people asked for when they came in boiled down to how they wanted to feel continuity, to belong, to ally themselves with something that had roots and strength and could provide wisdom in the here-and-now.

I can understand that need, and I'm glad to have found several things that give me that sense of belonging and continuity. Feri and Thelema certainly provide that, but I love that even going back further and further, there is a continuity of teaching and of wisdom that extends back, a subtle thread that leads out of the labyrinth.
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-04-15 09:07 pm

Caught in Another Faith's Crisis (2) or, How to Be an Alphadon

“One could almost say that, with the dawn of each new age, some people become more subtle and enlightened, and the remaining idiots figure out better ways to make the world a more unpleasant place.”

(Lon Milo DuQuette, from Angels, Demons and Gods of the New Millenium)

So. If it is true that Christianity is collapsing, or transforming (depending on whichever viewpoint anyone cares to embrace), what is it that those of us who are Pagan to do? Is it just that we need to stay out of the way while the old structures collapse, like an alphadon hiding in the trees while Tyrannosaurs and Styracosaurii stomp and roar their last?

Do we creep around the edges and gradually take the place of the old reptiles? Or do we work on being a different thing altogether, whatever that may be?

For now I think our diversity is helping us. Like the proto-mammals, there are lots of different kinds of us and we move quickly and adapt quickly. Adaptation is the key. Religion is an ossified thing, and people like Dawkins and Hitchens are right to be suspicious of it. Expanding to attain our own divinity, whether you call it “gaining enlightenment,” or “attaining knowledge and conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel,” or “unifying the Three Souls,” or however you put it; that is the future of spirituality, I think. At least any kind of open spirituality.

The more restrictive and doctrinaire a faith becomes, the less adaptable it becomes, and the less adaptable it becomes, the more it is likely to sicken and die from being stuck in time.

The formulae of the Old Aeon no longer apply; the Sun will rise again. Life is Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combination*. Life and death are one thing and each one participates in the other. There is no fear of death because there is no death; the ego is only a crafty and useful illusion behind which every one of us is a Star, pursuing a grand orbit through the body of Nuit Herself whose beginning and end are unknown to us, and we revel in the not-knowing.

More people are realizing this, although they are putting it in their own way. The “rise of atheism in America” (1) is skepticism, partly fueled by the frightening specter of the Religious Right and partly due to the inability of rational people to believe that the Bible is the inerrant Word of God, and their inability to see the church – any church – as the final arbiter of behavior and belief. The struggle that Christianity has before it is not our struggle as Pagans. If Christianity is to last another century it must be transformed, by Christians. In many ways our best response to the death throes – or the birth pangs – is to stay out of the way and avoid being eaten, like our far-distant ancestor the alphadon. For us to interfere in it one way or the other is unwise because it is not our battle. It is their battle. They have to make their religion relevant; we have no obligation to them to obey it or to regard it as anything but another religion.

Hopefully, hopefully, we can evolve past religion. I believe in spirituality but I don’t believe in religion. If my spirituality is helped by religious acts, like the Gnostic Mass, then that is fine. But failed foolish doctrine and orders from on high will never work for long. It will either foster rebellion or insanity.

Ross Douthat (2) accuses America of various types of heresy. Who is it that determines what heresy is? At one time Christianity itself was a heresy. And to be truthful, if we look at the first century Christianities and compare them to 21st century Christianities, all of them are heretical to one another and the arguments degenerate to name-calling, which ends in endless desperate infighting to prove obscure points of dogma that absolutely no one cares about if they are in their right mind.

I think that the proper response to this death, or transformation, of Christianity is to continue our own work. In a sense I agree with Dauthat when he talks about a spiritual “…narcissism, where the things we already want to do, we tell ourselves, are things that God wants us to do, too.” The gratification of the ego, and the justification of that gratification as somehow divine, is one of the great traps of modern Paganism. We can’t destroy the ego, because it’s a handy fiction and it’s part of our makeup. However, following it unquestioningly, and making up reasons to follow it unquestioningly, is a dead end road.

I think the thing that we might want to do as Pagans is to look back, in order to look forward. If we look at pre-Christian thought, we may get guidance toward post-Christian thought.  Pagans made the great literature of the ancient world; they built the monuments, they created art and science. If we were to somehow undo the burning of the Library at Alexandria and prevent the murder of Hypatia, what kind of world would we have seen?  Maybe this time around we can build our own Library of Alexandria, and call on our own Hypatias to come forward, and bring a bright Paganism full of skepticism and wonder into being. We can all abide by the light of our own Star and realize that there is a universe where we can all shine.

 

*thank you to Gene Roddenberry and The Kybalion

(1) http://news.yahoo.com/rise-atheism-america-110700315.html

(2) http://www.npr.org/2012/04/14/150437554/heretics-the-crisis-of-american-christianity?sc=fb&cc=fp

happydog1960: (Default)
2012-04-09 03:35 pm

Caught In Another Faith’s Crisis (1)

Caught In Another Faith’s Crisis.

I feel that Jason has pointed out something really important here. As Pagans, I think we really are caught in another faith’s crisis. I think we are witnessing the death of Christianity, the long slow death of Christianity.

It may be my prejudice. I was brought up in the Deep South. As a part of my religious search, I involved myself in Protestant fundamentalist evangelical Christianity. This is something some of you may know about already because I’ve blogged about it before elsewhere. I am sure that there are people who are tired of hearing me write about it, but I still haven’t been able to process it all out. One thing I do know is that I could never go back, once I had been free of Christianity.

One of the bloggers that I follow, Mictlantecuhtli, says that when people point out positives in Christianity, her response is that many of these things are borrowed from other cultures wholesale. I certainly find this to be true; many of these elements are not present in the original. This, of course, assumes that there is anything in Christianity that is original, which I do not believe there is. My master’s is in counseling and not theology or history, I admit. But even a reasonably well-read person can see the obvious influences of Zoroaster and Mithraism, Gnosticism and Greek mysticism,  on Christianity.

Modern Christians deny this, particularly the Protestant Evangelical type. They claim that their book is absolute, literal truth from cover to cover, when it cannot possibly be.  Rabbits don’t chew their cud. There are no four-legged insects. The sun cannot stand still in the sky, because it does not move; the earth moves around it, which the Biblical authors did not know, and Moses could neither make the sun stop moving nor make the earth stop moving around the sun, for all life would have become extinct immediately if that happened.  And bats are not birds.

Just as it is not literally true, the Bible is not without its influences. Paul and Pseudo-Paul lift mightily from Greek philosophers and John’s Gospel is more Gnostic than anything else. Borrowings from Pagan religion abound in the Bible. In modern American Christianity, the “prosperity gospel” is a maudlinization and bowdlerization of the ideas in the Kybalion, a work itself drawn from Gnostic and Greek philosophy. Any Charismatic service where there is speaking in tongues and prophecy and healing is not original, as I once thought; all these things happen in Vodoun ceremony, as they do in many shamanistic and indigenous traditions across the face of the world.

This information is out. People know it. It cannot be hidden, and more and more it is being heard. The Bible is not inerrant, and it is not literally true, and no one can truthfully say that it is unless they are sublimely ill-informed. (Worst of all the pastors and preachers who preach its infallibility; they learn in theology school, if they went, that the Bible is full of errors and contradictions, and so they stand in front of their congregations and lie in the face of their own God, preaching that a book made by men has no errors. ) Why should anyone regard the Bible as the Word of God, any more than the Bhagavad-Gita, or the Dhammapada, or the Book of the Law, or the Book of Urantia ,or Aradia, or the Quran or, for that matter, the Silmarillion or The Tale of Peter Rabbit?

The other disease that is killing Christianity is raw hypocrisy. They demand that the world adhere to standards that they themselves are unable to live up to. They demand an end to abortion while sending their daughters out of state to abortion clinics. They fetishize fetuses while letting mentally disabled adults rot in jail or wander the streets without medicine or shelter. They demand that no one have sex unless they are male and female, in a state-and-church sanctioned marriage, and yet their pastors are found rolling in more mistresses (and misters) than a Roman emperor.

The unification of evangelical Christianity and far-right politics has been happening since the 1960s, but the fever pitch it has reached at this point is exactly that; a fever that has led to dementia. Ignorant politicians pass laws that treat women as cattle and deny ethnic groups the right to even talk about their heritage. They ban medical procedures but are not doctors themselves. They preach the sickness of homosexuality while having sad, quick, furtive encounters in toilet stalls.

There are certainly enough fools in this country, as proved by the election of George W. Bush, a man who may be, apart from Warren G. Harding (another Republican), the most fatuous idiot to ever hold the office of President. But there are also enough people whose common sense dictates that when the Religious Right starts taking away their rights, it’s time to look hard at the people who are telling you how to live your life. Americans, at one time anyway, were not real big on letting people tell them how they should live, which is proper in a country that was settled by dreamers and outcasts. Even the Puritans were eventually overthrown when their madness became bloody and all-too-apparent. Perhaps Americans are more sheeplike now; perhaps they are not. But I note that many people who are capable of critical thinking see the connection between evangelical Christianity and the right-wing Republican party, and they are choosing to disassociate themselves from both. Polls show that Obama, no matter how unpopular the right-wing press says he is, outpaces all the Republican candidates, and no wonder; they offer us a robot who changes his opinions with the wind, a sweater-vested madman who fetishizes fetuses and believes women should be happy to be raped, and a nonsensical mad hatter/space cadet who would be better off as a bad science fiction author than a statesman.

And the blame for this insanity is laid by many people right at the door of Christianity. Protestant fundamentalist evangelical Christianity, to be specific; but many people, more each day, are starting not to care about the distinctions. People are beginning to realize that a religion whose key symbol is a man who has been tortured to death in order to please a bloodthirsty demiurge might not be the best religion to build your life around. Moreover, it makes no sense to build a nation’s statecraft on “commandments” written for wandering tribes of Iron Age nomads who had to be specifically told by God not to fuck their sheep.  (Leviticus 18:23)

 

happydog1960: (Default)
2012-03-21 10:56 am

An encyclical from the Pope of the Cosmic Brother-Sisterhood

Do as thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.
Welcome to this encyclical, o ye of the Cosmic Brother-Sisterhood!

Seeing as how there are those who use the Christian Bible to predict the downfall of their enemies and the immorality of those they dislike, especially when it comes to the coming election...

let us, therefore, look into this book and see if there be prophecy in there for those of us who are strange, odd, queer, kinky, and "not-right" concerning this upcoming election.

Today, brothers and sisters, we read from Judges, 4:2-22.

"...and the commander of his army was Sisera.... 3The sons of Israel cried to the LORD; for he had nine hundred iron chariots, and he oppressed the sons of Israel severely for twenty years.

      4 Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel at that time. 5 She used to sit under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim; and the sons of Israel came up to her for judgment. 6 Now she sent and summoned Barak the son of Abinoam from Kedesh-naphtali, and said to him, “Behold, the LORD, the God of Israel, has commanded, ‘Go and march to Mount Tabor, and take with you ten thousand men from the sons of Naphtali and from the sons of Zebulun. 7 ‘I will draw out to you Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his many troops to the river Kishon, and I will give him into your hand.’” 8 Then Barak said to her, “If you will go with me, then I will go; but if you will not go with me, I will not go.” 9 She said, “I will surely go with you; nevertheless, the honor shall not be yours on the journey that you are about to take, for the LORD will sell Sisera into the hands of a woman.” Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh. 10 Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali together to Kedesh, and ten thousand men went up with him; Deborah also went up with him.

      11 Now Heber the Kenite had separated himself from the Kenites, from the sons of Hobab the father-in-law of Moses, and had pitched his tent as far away as the oak in Zaanannim, which is near Kedesh.

      12 Then they told Sisera that Barak the son of Abinoam had gone up to Mount Tabor. 1 3Sisera called together all his chariots, nine hundred iron chariots, and all the people who were with him, from Harosheth-hagoyim to the river Kishon. 14 Deborah said to Barak, “Arise! For this is the day in which the LORD has given Sisera into your hands; behold, the LORD has gone out before you.” So Barak went down from Mount Tabor with ten thousand men following him.

15 The LORD routed Sisera and all his chariots and all his army with the edge of the sword before Barak; and Sisera alighted from his chariot and fled away on foot.

16 But Barak pursued the chariots and the army as far as Harosheth-hagoyim, and all the army of Sisera fell by the edge of the sword; not even one was left.

      17Now Sisera fled away on foot to the tent of Jael, the wife of Heber the Kenite, for there was peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite. 18 Jael went out to meet Sisera, and said to him, “Turn aside, my master, turn aside to me! Do not be afraid.” And he turned aside to her into the tent, and she covered him with a rug.

19
He said to her, “Please give me a little water to drink, for I am thirsty.” So she opened a bottle of milk and gave him a drink; then she covered him. 20 He said to her, “Stand in the doorway of the tent, and it shall be if anyone comes and inquires of you, and says, ‘Is there anyone here?’ that you shall say, ‘No.’”

21  But Jael, Heber’s wife, took a tent peg and seized a hammer in her hand, and went secretly to him and drove the peg into his temple, and it went through into the ground; for he was sound asleep and exhausted. So he died.

22And behold, as Barak pursued Sisera, Jael came out to meet him and said to him, “Come, and I will show you the man whom you are seeking.” And he entered with her, and behold Sisera was lying dead with the tent peg in his temple."

Now let us observe, brothers and sisters, that there are those who claim prophecy in scripture.

And if this is so, let us look here, for here we have a BARAK, who led the people against an oppressor who had oppressed the people for 20 years.

And here let us see a PROPHETESS, that is, a WOMAN, who told this Barak that Sisera, the enemy commander, would be given into his hands.

And brothers and most especially sisters, let us witness here that Sisera, the enemy commander, the oppressor and the commander of the forces of evil, with his chariots of iron, was slain by a WOMAN, Jael by name.

Now the meaning of Jael is "ibex," the mountain goat, whose mystic meaning is ASCENSION.

So let us see, sisters and brothers. If we were to read a mystic meaning into these verses, a prophetic meaning, could it be that Woman shall take up arms against her oppressor? 

Could we prophesy that Woman is in Ascension, and it is she who will hand the head of the oppressor to the conqueror Barak? 

Because if the Right Wing can claim Biblical prophecy for their vanity, then should not the left? And we even used the Old Testament, their favorite part of the Bible! 

And thus endeth the sermon for today, O ye of the Cosmic Brother-Sisterhood. Love is the Law, Love under Will. Blessed be!

 

happydog1960: (Default)
2012-03-10 02:45 pm

(no subject)

I really don't see why Republicans have a problem with fundamentalist Islam. There's far more in common than they think. Both fundamentalist Islam and right wing Republicans treat women like shit, deny them human rights, and want to keep them barefoot, pregnant, silent, and shrouded from head to toe. Both fundy Islamists and Republicans want everyone to believe in their One True God, and to kill everyone who doesn't believe in their One True God. Both think that the universe was made for Man to exploit, rule and destroy. If it wasn't for that little obstacle of Arabic, it'd be the same. Fundamentalist Islam and right wing, Rush Limbaugh style Republicanism are essentially the same in all particulars. They need to kiss and be friendly. Jihad for Jesus!
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-03-06 01:11 am

we are all timelords

I casually mentioned to someone that I had notebooks dating back to high school in storage. They are generally filled with lyrics and poetry of various sorts and some long rambly bits that could be called a journal. Of course, during Pantheacon a friend of mine had One Of Those Dreams, which said that I should get the notebooks out of storage and scan them, and make some sort of book out of them that would describe how I got from there to here. And as we all know, "From There to Here, from Here to There, funny things are everywhere," as Dr. Seuss told us.

Scanning these notebooks has been embarrassing at first, but after I got over the initial embarrassment I was struck by a thought while scanning. I was scanning and watching Doctor Who at the same time and had the sudden realization that we are all Timelords.

Doctor Who is the same person, in a sense; he has some consistent qualities that stay the same, but at the same time his incarnations are very different from one another. It is always a crisis that forces a change for him, a drastic change into someone who appears completely different. But who isn't different. But who is.

Going through the notebooks, the 16 year old me, keeping a scrapbook, obsessed with guitars and rock music and girls, and fearing for the state of his soul and being confused about Jesus, is different and yet the same from the 22 year old me, writing poems about everything and still getting tripped out over the conflict between austerities of faith and the lusts of the flesh.

And that person is different from the 26 year old me who gave up on Christianity after a crisis, and dived into those lusts. And then became the 30 year old me who awoke, politically aware, and found a path toward his own idea of the Divine. And who somehow started having a real relationship for the first time in his life, not just a series of heartbreaks and ridiculous expectations wrapped around another person. And who discovered he was clinically depressed and began taking meds for it, and saw the fog lift that he never knew was there.

And that, again, is another person from the me in his 40s who became aware of his own mortality, trying to understand where and when and who and how much, and struggling with changing course in midlife, and hurricanes both internal and external. And that brings us to now and 51-year-old me (about to turn 52), surveying all these incarnations from what vantage point there is here on the hill.

In these incarnations I see what is me and what is not me, what I tried on that ended up not fitting, what I discarded too early and clung to for too long, what I saved that was worthy, what I kept that was strong, and a few things come through. I don't like to be told what to do, even if I don't know what to do; and I love beauty and creating beauty, and other things I have not begun to lay out yet. It's dizzying and a bit intimidating. And the transformations still go on, with me becoming.

I have been reading a book called The Kabbalistic Mirror of Genesis, which is an analysis of the first book of the Bible from a Kabbalistic point of view. The author points out that the phrase, "In the beginning, God" has been mistranslated in the west for hundreds of years. The actual phrase translates to "in the beginningness, the gods." The author goes on to explain that beginningness, "bereshith," is not accomplished; on the contrary, it is still going on. The universe is constantly in a state of beginningness, and the gods - that is, you and I - are always in constant motion above the waters, creating, creating, creating. What we are creating has yet to be seen fully, has yet to be finished, and may never be finished, if the ancient writers are correct; our creation is infinite, eternal, opening and expanding, blooming into the universe, our creation as gods yet to be.

These notebooks contain a little of my beginningness, my small beginningness, my bereshith on a personal level. There are parts of it that I'm not comfortable with, but true magic almost always exists outside of our comfort zone.  To meet those selves takes an effort. Going back to Doctor Who, any time there was more than one incarnation of the Doctor present there was conflict between them, even though they were the same man, so to speak. My path through this is to reconcile self with self, to have compassion on my own foolishness (of which there is a lot) and to give those voices that live in the past, and yet live in me, a way to speak now.

I have no idea how that will be done. That part of the beginningness is not revealed to me yet. But right now, all I need to do is to scan and observe.

We will see what happens.
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-02-22 01:37 am

Pantheacon and On and On

Do as thou wilt shall be the whole of the law, y'all. I'm back.

There was so much that happened at Pantheacon this year that it beggars my mind to set it all down. Through a cosmic blessing I was able to room with Karina Blackheart and Cairelle. Monday night hanging out in Anaar's room and listening to these two "talk shop" and discuss the Craft was as good as any presentation. I was honored to be there and listen and speak. Having Karina in the room was awesome. She is a funny, wonderful, wise, passionate person and I am enriched by knowing her.

I made it to Jenya's presentation of "Magick, Poetry, and Wisdom," which was very deep. I am really proud that she is my sister, to say the least. I love her and Matt to pieces, generally, and the guided meditation took me somewhere deep. That was rare and beautiful in itself.

I am still processing the Exorcism: De-Possession and Re-Integration ritual. I participated in that as an asperger (that is a rare job description). Powerful is not a strong enough word for this ritual. Those who participated in it, which means everyone who attended it and went into the circle to face their demons and purify their poisons, Greed, Fear, Rage, Shame, and Despair were invoked one at a time, and the people there were invited to dance, scream, and shake their poison into the crystal bowl filled with water. Then the water was purified and blessed, filled with energy and sprinkled on the crowd.

This description is just not indicative of the event itself and how awe-filled it was. Watching Sharon and Morpheus circle around each other, invoking the five poisons, was absolutely chilling, one of many "hair stands up on the back of my neck" moments. I threw myself into the ritual, because I had some things to get out. It was beautifully purging, but it made asperging a little tricky afterwards. I didn't have to worry about shaking the rosemary to sprinkle water on the crowd, my hands were shaking all by themselves. Lesson #1: if you're part of the ritual, you may not want to participate in it, especially if it's INTENSE.

Because I had to learn Lesson #1 the hard way, I was completely and totally exhausted by the end of the ritual. I went to eat with Anaar, Cairellle, and Lady L.  (Lady L is someone I have known from LiveJournal days all the way up to the present, but never have met until this year. She is simply awesome. Hanging around her was again an experience just as good as any presentation. ) Lesson #2: After being part of an exorcism of 250 people, you should not eat SALAD. You need carbs and meat and grounding/earthing things. I ate a salad and was unable to get to good sleep. I popped with energy for most of the night no matter how I tried to shake it off or ground it. Chicken Fried Steak, which Cairelle was smart enough to get, would have been the right way to go.

I spent a lot of time in the hospitality suites this year. The OTO suite was great as usual, and I met EB there - another person I haven't seen in real life before! Not enough time could be spent. Across the hall in the Golden Dawn suite I saw Joanne again and we talked of shoes, and ships and sealing wax. Then back across the hall again to talk to a member of the Sisterhood of Avalon of cabbages and kings, and why the sea is boiling hot and whether pigs have wings. The OTO suite had a well-stocked bar, and the Golden Dawn had San Pellegrino water. The tap water at the hotel was like drinking swimming pool water, so I am afraid I took advantage of the Golden Dawn's hospitality.

Rynn was running the Feri Haven. I was privileged enough to be present when she cleared and sealed the room and invoked Kuan Yin into it. I will say here and now that Rynn is a powerful and graceful priestess, who was able to attune the room masterfully. I have seldom been lucky enough to see a working as single-pointed and effective as that was. I am not exaggerating. The Haven suite was always a peaceful and fun place to be; I only wish I had stopped to have some beer there! I did go to a morning meditation there, which helped a lot.

The Stone City room was where I met Alex Mar, who directed "American Mystic," which showed at Pantheacon last year. If  you haven't seen American Mystic yet, you really owe it to yourself to take a look. It's a genuine look at three people who are walking down a road that not many other people choose to these days. Alex Mar is a pretty delightful person to meet. She's intelligent and witty, with big eyes and a ready smile.

The Exorcism ritual pretty much wiped me out, but Sunday night I did make it to the Sharon Knight concert. I like the NeoFolk Romantique material and this was a great performance of it. Sharon and Winter are strong performers and Caith fills things out to where it sounds like more than three people up there. They were wrestling with the soundman, who apparently was unable to achieve personal fecal cohesion*, but in spite of that they did a great show and got people dancing.

I knew about the Controversy, but I didn't go by and see. I was on my way there and Lady L. pointed out that if we weren't going to participate, we would just be tourists viewing it as a performance, and this observation was strong enough to turn me around. I did not want to take energy away from something that important. I have my own views on the whole topic, but my primary thought is that if anyone should want to do a ritual that excludes people, then they should do it in a room or a hospitality suite. There are rituals that go on in the suites all the time. The OTO stages a Gnostic Mass in their suite, for example. (Not that the Gnostic Mass excludes anyone!)  But it seems to me that if someone was concerned about safety, and being skyclad with only other women present, then the best place to do that would be in a suite. That would have avoided all the controversy.

I am also puzzled by the term "Genetic Women Only." We all start out in the womb as female, and thus genetically we have those chromosomes within us all. Being female is one thing; being a "woman" is another. Our perception of sex identity is a construct. This is becoming more and more clear as we move further into the New Aeon. Sexual identity is a construct, and can be altered at will, or nearly so. You can decide to be a man or a woman or both or neither or some variation thereof. As a cisgender straight-identified male (sometimes ridiculously so; I am told that my blog can be identified "by the boobies") I don't know if I really have a dog in this hunt, but the world is changing, and sexual identity is becoming more fluid, and there is no reason for it not to do so. Not to recognize change when you have worked all your life to create change, and being unable to cope with the fact that change is occurring right in front of you, is sad. 

Pantheacon for me was not about controversy. This year it was really about unity in diversity. There was so much going on, and so many people to see, that it was impossible not to become dizzy sometimes with all the powerful positive potential of it all. That is the truth that keeps me going back for what was the third year in a row now, and I do not see any breaks coming up in the future. I think that if we, as Pagans, Wiccans, witches, and magickians, can continue to just get together and open the doors of perception, then this kind of gathering is worth it despite any bumps along the way. That's why I always come home buzzing from Pantheacon, full of new ideas.

I will be talking about some of these in the next few days. Blessed be - Love is the law, love under will.

* i.e. get his shit together
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-02-05 02:07 am

The tower struck down (and getting out before it falls)

It's been a very strange month.

Work is getting worse and weirder. They have switched me over to what they call a "case manager" position. In their world, "case manager" means little to no patient contact (except of course for the ridiculous calling on the weekends to tell them we're available for you and please don't use - a duty I have now been stuck with permanently, apparently - and the urine tests). This means that I spend most of my day doing paperwork. The Job has a crew of middle managers who change the paperwork monthly and reissue new rules and regulations monthly. This is not by design, but through (a) sheer incompetence; (b) the inability to stop fucking with things; and (c) unbridled greed - these changes are usually designed to get more money out of the patient or their insurance company.

I went through quite the experience on Friday when the "counselor supervisor," a bimbo half my age with none of my experience, who looks like an overstuffed sausage, with a sickening Paula-Deen-like accent and similarly bleach-ruined hair, proceeded to tear apart my work case by case with the express purpose of making me feel like shit. She almost pulled it off. By the time I left that day I felt like I had been punched in the head repeatedly. I got home and went to bed. I woke up late, ate dinner with a woman who loves me and listens to me, and went out later to meet up with friends who love me for coffee. I realized that the insanity of The Job is their insanity, not mine. They are trying to give it to me, because they are insane, and they need everyone who works with them to be insane, to be regulated by the same bullying and brutality that they are given by their superiors on down the line.

(Never work for ex-military doctors wh0 were also formerly hospital administrators, by the way. Military doctors are assholes, and hospital administrators are fucking assholes. An ex-military doctor who was a hospital administrator is like a double asshole - twice as arrogant, twice as arrant a fool, twice as likely to believe that the more paper you generate, the better you are, and twice as likely to push people to the brink through intimidation, bullying and lies.)

In other words, as a dear friend reminded me some time back, there are people who will try to take your Black Heart away from you, who will attack you psychically to steal your soul because you have one and they don't, because you have the Black Heart and they do not. My encounter with the counselor supervisor was exactly that, in retrospect; it was a psychic attack of the classic variety as described by Dion Fortune. I was not prepared for it coming from the source, an ignorant little hick from Baton Rouge who has little education and utter ignorance of the occult. But it was an attack all the same.

So, two things have to happen. I have to get another job, hopefully before Pantheacon, because I am not going to stay one minute longer at this place than I have to. It would take too long to explain how "Operations," i.e. the ex-military doc/hospital administrator and his craven toadies, have fucked things up there at The Job in the past four months. It's been horrible to watch, but I'm no longer going to be a party to it, especially if they try to make me into a paper pusher instead of a therapist.

The other thing that has to happen is that as long as I am there I have to put up wards and be prepared for that kind of malice. Hopefully it won't last long. I've already had one job interview this past week and I have another one scheduled for Monday, so with any luck one of them will call back sometime before Pantheacon and I'll be out of there, at a different and better job. There is also the chance that I will be fired first thing Monday morning. They put 30-day "Performance Improvement Plans" on me and a number of people in the company, telling them that if you don't meet the performance improvement standards, you're out.

I originally thought that I was the only one who got one of those but I found out there are a number of them put on people throughout the company. The trick is that they told me I can't talk to anyone about my PIP. I did, and I found out many people have them. Once again, secrets used by abusers to control. A classic corporate-military technique; divide, frighten, and conquer. The counselor's bad evaluation of me on Friday may be enough to where she will decide to fire me. I won't fight it, it'll be a relief; but if she does have the guts to fire me in person, she will get my unbridled opinion of her and the rest of the jack shit management that is driving what was a good place to work into the dirt.

That's enough about this. I'm going for a new job, a better one, with benefits; one that has normal hours, 9 to 5 or 8 to 4, instead of this crazy noon-till-nine arrangement that I've dealt with for the past three or four years. I'm going to set up my personal wards and go forward into whatever happens like a warrior. If you want to burn a candle for me that I can get out of this crazy shit fast, I appreciate it; if not that's OK, I appreciate that too. Either way, it seems like the Minerval has brought the legendary change it is supposed to bring to people. My job is to face it and move forward.

Thanks for listening.
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-01-22 11:13 pm

Trans

The recent to-do over transgendered Girl Scouts (or rather, the transgendered Girl Scout) is a sign of the transformation of society. Fact: LGBTQ people don't want to stay in the closet and live as second-class citizens. Fact: the way gender is played out in our society is being questioned. That is happening, now, regardless of anyone's idea of whether it should or not.

For some reason I have never been able to understand, a lot of small-minded and ignorant people are afraid of anything that doesn't fit - EXACTLY - into their predetermined view of how the world should be.

Problem is, the world itself doesn't fit into anybody's predetermined view of how the world should be. (Not mine, either, but that's a different story.) As time goes on, lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgendered and queer people are going to become more visible, and over time they will be more accepted. In New Orleans, they already are in many ways. (Not to say there isn't still prejudice, but that's another story, too.)

Basically, the people who are having a fit about this are, like everyone else, going to have to accept that there are queer people in the world, and the queer people aren't going to go away and be invisible.

As Christianity dies from its own hypocrisy, the old standards and morals that no longer work are falling away, just like the morals and standards of the corrupt Roman Empire collapsed and fell away.

You can move to the sticks to get away from the black people and the queer people, and all the other people who disturb you, and you may be able to keep them out of your community for a little while. But 100 years from now the people who raised hell over transgendered people will be regarded with the same contempt as the whites of the 19th century who denied that black people had souls.

Change and transformation are necessary and vital if you want to have a living culture. Change and transformation are part of living here and now.

We are all the children of mutants, every one of us. If we weren't, we would still be walking on our knuckles.

Transformation is not easy, and sometimes it is not very kind. It can be ragged and messy and dangerous and supremely, sublimely uncomfortable. There are no guarantees of safety and no insurance that everything really will be as it always has been. Very often, "the way it always was," is the way it never really was.

Resisting deep change and real transformation guarantees extinction. It always has and it always will, as long as we live on this planet. Those who can adapt, should, and those who can't won't.

We all will die and our time here will be done. What comes after no one knows. The mystery is a Mystery, and all Mysteries are a mystery. I feel that the best we can do is to live to the standards of beauty and brilliance, to bring Light to the world, to live Life absolutely and fully, to have and give Love, and to praise and promote Liberty.

These if anything are the standards to fight for and to bear into battle, if battle there need be. And if there are any eternal verities these would be the ones I would vouch for, along the way, if the voice that comes from this little temporary house floating in the infinite counts for anything.



happydog1960: (Default)
2012-01-10 01:24 am

lions and tigers and pagan podcasts o my

I went through all of my favorite pagan podcasts. Elemental Castings? Digging down deep in the archives but running out. Thelema Now? Completely gone, listened to them all. Speech in the Silence? Not a one left. Occult of Personality? Seriously damaged, although there are some I haven't listened to yet. Modern Witch: Just started, so far so good. So now I'm exploring what else is out there, and...oh my (in Sulu voice). I found myself barking back at some of these: "Are you kidding me? Are you CRAZY?! Shinto is NOT a NeoPagan religion!" is just one example.

I am truly appalled at some of the stupid stuff I have heard. I am sorry, do I sound mean? Maybe I am spoiled by the above-mentioned podcasts. I mean, Thorn and Frater Puck and Greg Kaminsky are focused. They know who they want to talk to and they have a good idea of what questions to ask. They have a theme, even if it's only a general one, and they often go into a good deal of depth. Speech in the Silence is a great grab-bag of Thelemic teaching and thought, and it has Dr. David Shoemaker, who goes over my head but in a way that challenges me to go after him.

But really...there are a lot of Pagan podcasts out there that are simply dreadful. There are altogether too many of them that just consist of people gabbing about nothing at all, picking a "topic" ("Is vodou black magic?" "What's your favorite Tarot deck?" "Love spells are bad!" ) and then just wandering off into nothingland, usually lobbing in a couple of completely uninformed, dumb statements passed off as Fact.

The worst ones are the ones where you have a bunch of people just talking. About nothing. It begins to feel like I'm listening to recordings of the most recent Friday night at Lady Buckingunicorn's house when they cracked open the mead, got drunk and started talking about their favorite Buffy episode. There are also the ones where one person, and only one, just takes up 45 minutes of my time talking about whatever is on their mind. Today I was trying to listen to one where the woman just went on and on about what she got for Christmas, and what a drag it was driving back and forth to the parents' house and the grandparents' houses and etc. etc., and after a while I started thinking, "What the FUCK am I listening to this for? What the FUCK does this have to do with ANY kind of Paganism?"

Another painful adventure in podcast listening  is when you have an interesting guest, but the hosts have absolutely no idea what to ask this person. I've heard a couple where the guest started sounding politely bored, because the hosts had nothing to say. For example, on one podcast the hosts interviewed a pagan musician (who I have never heard of, but that's not uncommon). And after a while the guest just sounded bored. After all, if you're a musician there's only so much fanboy/girl squee you can handle. The interview was all squee.

There was another podcast where the hosts simply could not ask an interesting question to save their lives. They just kept going over Pagan tropes and asking the guest things that he/she had probably answered a million times before in their last Wicca 101 talk. It got to the point that I was amusing myself by answering the questions and seeing how close I was to the stock answer the guest was giving. I'm not even famous and I was damn close.

I don't know what leads some people to grab a mike and some sort of recording program and makes them decide to become podcasters. I don't want to pee on anybody's parade but it reminds me of the story about the preacher who had an old farmer come to him one day and say, "Reverend, I had a dream last night that I was out in the fields with my mule and an angel came and wrote the letters P. C. in the sky. Does that mean that I should Preach Christ?" The preacher looks at the old guy and says, "Brother, I think it means you should Plant Corn." 

With the proliferation of media generating devices, it's inevitable that everybody will opt for their 15 minutes of fame - or 15 seconds.  But if I was going to do a podcast I think I would model myself after people who have something to say. Having a pagan version of the morning DJs on WOMG trying to be funny and playing bad music in between bad jokes is just not good enough. Planting corn is sometimes the best option.
happydog1960: (Default)
2012-01-07 12:00 am

I wrote your name

Drawing lines in the dirt
writing the letters of my name
your name, anybody's name
names I made up
written in the dirt
big letters, standing back to see
fingers covered in dust and dirt
the remnants of
caesars and garbagemen
mothers and monsters
dogs and doorkeepers

forgotten or filed away
in god's filing cabinet
oh yes he used to live here,
she used to live there,
they used to be this country
and then they were this town
and this little village
and this city even
and now all gone
dissolved into dust
and here they are the dirt

in which I write my name
and names I made up
and your name
because I love you
I love you
I wrote your name in the dirt
because I love you
I wrote your name in the dust
that was a king
I wrote your name in the dust
that was a pope
the dust that was a rich man
and a poor peasant
I wrote your name in them
I wrote your name in that
because I love you
you are more than they are
to me

and even when we join them
in the dust and dirt
blowing across the world
in the wind
or packed into mountains
or fostering roots of trees
enveloping seeds
the resting place of fields
of corn or grain
we will be or were
I wrote your name
in the dirt
and it will blow away
or be washed away
in the rain
but I did it anyway
I love you
I love you
that is why
happydog1960: (Default)
2011-12-24 02:41 am

getting something off my mind

I blocked somebody today. This is the first time I've had to do that with a live person. I have blocked lots of spam bots and weird Russian websites, yes. But I try to cut people some slack. I have a friend who is a conservative Christian with Tea Party sympathies. I'm sure she rolls her eyes and shakes her head when she sees some of the things I post about. As I do when I see some of the ones she posts about. But we agree to disagree. When she puts up something about how awful Obama is, I don't go in there and act up. I move on. She does the same for me. And we can talk about other things.

But if the only time you reply to anything I do online is to say something critical, negative, bitter, and snide? I haven't got time for it, honestly. I am 51 years old and I am tired of it. I am done with bitter, cynical people. Life is too short for me to waste on people who never have anything good to say.

I am a person with great enthusiasms. I get carried away. I overstate the case. This is how I am. If you read this stuff, you have to deal with that, and you have to accept it.

I am a Pagan Feri Thelemite. I talk about my beliefs. If that bothers you, then you are cordially invited not to look at what I post here.

I like boobs and I like sex. Sometimes I talk about that too. If this bothers you, I again encourage you not to read.

I am a political liberal with a firm belief in Life, Light, Love and Liberty as the essential rights of man and womankind. I write about this too. If you don't agree, don't read.

You can put whatever you damn well please on your social media outlet of choice. I can put what I damn well please on mine, and I will not countenance anyone whose comments make me feel less-than, shamed, or reluctant to post my feelings, my enthusiasms and my beliefs. As visitors to my virtual house, I demand that you respect that, and that you respect me.

If you do not, if you come in my house and piss on my floor and take a shit on my valuables, however trinketty they appear to you, I have the perfect right to throw you out on your ass, and I will.


happydog1960: (Default)
2011-11-25 03:39 pm

the end of shame

I had a very long erotic dream last night. In it I was a time traveler who had gone back to the 1860s or 1870s, and I had married a much younger woman. It was our wedding night and I was introducing her to sex by giving her our 21st century ideas and concepts about sex. A good bit of the dream was spent on teaching her how to luxuriate in masturbation and bring herself to orgasm, and teaching her through demonstration and words that sex was not only good but desirable, not sinful, not evil or wrong, but natural and divine.

I used to be much more troubled by dreams like this because I have taken care to studiously be a feminist man, to regard women as equals. At the same time I am a Southerner, which means that I was brought up with a certain amount of female worship in my system. Women were to be respected and honored, at least in the house I grew up living in. There was a certain amount of chivalry involved in that as well.

But to get to the point, dreams where I was a dominant male, and particularly being sexually dominant over a woman, used to really disturb me a lot. I didn't think they were right, and that they put me in the chauvinist pig category.

I don't think about that so much any more. I think that there are a lot more levels to the male-female dynamic than the moralists, the chauvinists or the hyper-politically correct let us believe or see. There are men who enjoy being dominated by women and women who enjoy being dominated by men, and men who enjoy being dominated by men and women who enjoy being dominated by women, and women who enjoy dominating men who enjoy dominating men, and men who enjoy dominating women who enjoy dominating women while they are being dominated by men who enjoy dominating men, and etc. etc. etc.

I have, over time, come to a place where I am OK with the places my mind goes sexually when I am asleep. Most of my erotic dreams are not outside the boundaries all that much, I find to my combined relief and chagrin. The more I read of other people's adventures in sex, both in the dreamworld and real life, I realize that I am not really all that kinky or depraved, which makes me laugh. When I was an adolescent and a young adult involved in fundie Christianity, I used to think that I was a pervert or that something was really wrong with me sexually.

As I got away from that it was a relief, and something of a laugh, to find out that I wasn't at all; that my kinky was other people's normal, and that my fantasies were shared by lots of people. And not just men, but women as well. It was a relief to find out that women fantasized, that they were not pure as the driven snow but could be as down and dirty as men - even more so sometimes - and that in spite of what I was told when I was young, that they wanted to have sex and luxuriate in it, and that they thought about it just like I did. So if I had a dream about tying a woman up and having sex with her, it was equally true that there was a woman who wanted to be tied up and have someone have sex with her, as it was also true there was a man dreaming of being tied up and "taken advantage of." It wasn't weird; it was normal.

So when I had the dream about being a sexual initiator for a younger woman back in the 1870s or so, the ghost of shame tries to come back, but is quickly laid to rest by the fact that there are a million people fantasizing about that same thing, both male initiators and female initiates (and initiatrixes and initiatees too) dreaming about being led and leading into the jungle of lust by a skilled guide who unleashes the gorgeous daimon within.

We are free to do as we will, as long as it harms no one, in bed or out of bed. That frightens some people who are afraid of their own sexuality. I know it does, because honestly, I used to be frightened of my own sexuality. There are a lot of reasons for that, but I am glad that fear has mostly fallen away. Even at this point in my life, I am learning about my desires and what I desire, and seeing those desires as acceptable, and good. That continuing act of liberation is something that I revel in and that I am thankful for.