Sunday, October 25, 2009

Buzz Coil: October '09

Flashes of Insight: Flash Silvermoon’s blogs about "The Secret," sweatlodges, Sedona, and the "Wise Women of old" who have been written out of history, in her Oct. 18 post "For Heaven’s Sake, Don’t Drink the Kozmic Kool Aid." Here is just a small part of what she says in this powerful post, written with rightful anger and a deeply personal touch:
Part of the problem is the externalization of the Divine which is the foundation of all Patriarchal and mainstream religions. This is the big set up for all of us and especially the have nots who are never represented as being a God head. Therefore what is Divine is other and the Other has all the answers.
Its one big set up to keep all the isms well in place with a clergy that has the ultimate back up plan with Hell to pay if you stray from the dogma.
As long as people externalize a deity and especially if they worship one that is not like them, they are doomed to drink the Kool Aid at some point and to keep their seats securely at the back of the bus with their own connection to the Divine always just beyond their reach.There are wonderful and elevating paths one can explore that do not include spending exorbitant amounts of money and giving up your free will. Ideally, if you listen to your own quiet inner voice sans the hype, you will discover just what journeys will give you the wisdom and freedom that you most desire.

Walking on Fire: Influenced by the sweatlodge disaster, blogger Myfanwy dreams a dream whose characters include President Obama, the "Peaceful Warrior," an "unknown blonde-haired woman," Michelle Obama, and the blogger herself. In the dream, detailed in her Oct. 11 post, "Secret of the Peaceful Warrior," the President undergoes "tests" which the blogger and unknown blonde woman help him with by revealing certain "secrets."

Pagan Godspell: In her Oct. 20 post, "Encountering and Countering Culture" the blogger now known as Sara Ruby explores whether religion in general supports or counters the dominant culture, and asks whether American Paganism is similar to other religions in this regard and whether it needs to become more countercultural. Here is just some of that post (ellipses hers):
THUS, if one posits that the dominant culture is Wrong and Generally Destructive, Dastardly and Disharmonious, AND one believes that the purpose of Religion is to orient the human animal towards harmony with their World, one might conclude that the Religion of one holding this belief should be necessarily countercultural. That would be me, holding that belief there. SO, when I was a young lass, and found the Religion that spoke to my bones and my breath and my blood, and had within it all the Secret and Beautiful Trumps of my own personal Story, I also thought that, naturally, its communities and ritual expression would also be countercultural; a Liturgical, Communal and Mythical Opposition to the Ugly Way Things Are.
But, in my experience, Paganism as it exists today in America (I can’t rightly speak to any communities outside my own country so I won’t), is not by and large a countercultural set of religions (I realize that there are traditions that have at their core a radical, progressive political agenda and I grok that, but I am talking about my impressions of Paganism as a whole….the contemporary Egregore of the thing, if you will…and many won’t agree, I recognize). Paganism in America was born almost completely out of the same cultural worldview as any other American religion. As such, it often posits some of the same flaws (according to moi): rampant materialism, radical individualism (as opposed to radical community), a kind of “eye for an eye” ethic, and a spiritual libertarianism that posits a kind of radically apathetic perennialism along the lines of “if it works for you, that’s right swell, no matter the consequences, unless of course it affects me personally…” the NIMBY of religious
You may also want to read her related Sept. 30 post, "On Professional Angel-Wrestling."

Hecate: "My So-Called (Witch’s) Life," posted by blogger Hecate on Oct. 22, is about the feeling of living in a community of women amidst life’s daily turmoil "in the shadow of the Capitol" and on an excursion to New York.

The Village Witch: In her blog in the Asheville (NC) Citizen-Times, beginning with a Sept. 30 post and continuing to at least through the last time I looked (Oct. 24), Byron Ballard has been posting a series of exercises mostly centered around getting closer to experiencing your ancestors (even if you don’t know who your ancestors are). And in her Oct. 22 post, she explains why she thinks "Hallowe’en is Not a Pagan Holiday."

The Wild Hunt: In an Oct. 23 post, "Bath & Body Works Manager Doesn’t Want to Work With ‘Satanists’," Jason Pitzl-Waters reports that in Hartford, Connecticut, a woman has allegedly been fired and accused of devil-worship because she was planning to take approved vacation time to make a "religious pilgrimage to Salem for Samhain."

Peeling A Pomegranate: In her Oct. 18 posts, "Rites of Passage," blogger Ketzirah, a kohenet (priestess) recently ordained in tradition of the relatively new earth-honoring, feminist Hebrew Priestess Institute, writes about how it feels to perform weddings and baby blessings.

Read This and Weep: In her Oct. 13 post, "In My Considered Opinion," Carol Lovekin explains why she feels "the most effective rituals are the simplest."

Broomstick Chronicles: In her Oct. 13 post, "Blending In, Standing Out," M. Macha Nightmare writes about attending an "interfaith" luncheon that was "uncomfortably Christian-centric" for her, and another meeting of a group that aims to be interfaith but "limits itself to the big three Abrahamic religions."

Weblog for Our Mother God In a recent undated post, "The ‘Great She’, the Queen of Heaven," an unnamed blogger responds to a question from from a Fr. Wilken of Germany, asking why the "Chapel of Our Mother God," whose blog it is, doesn’t use the term "Goddess." Here is part of the anonymous blogger’s response:
Our worship is for God Herself, the one Supreme Being and Creatrix of all, not for some demigod or "goddess".
"Patriarchal" is a broad concept, but in religion we generally use the term "patriarchal" to refer to the transition from the worship of God in Her original feminine form to the picturing or the Divine in a variety of masculine forms. Also to the "demotion" of Our Mother God to the inferior elements of earth and moon while the male "gods" usurp Her position as Queen of Heaven and Solar Spirit.This being the case, we appear to be one of the few sites that actually reject patriarchy, while most "goddess" cults wholeheartedly embrace the patriarchal movement to lunarize and chthonize their "goddess" (another reason we prefer to avoid the word).
Not that we reject lunar and earthly functions. We see the Lunar Divine as being primarily the Daughter of Our Mother God, the savior of all beings.But we recognize that there is a hierarchy of being in which the Sun stands higher than the moon and the Heavens stand higher than the earth.The early patriarchs recognized that too. That is why we have a so-called "earth goddess" supplanting the true Queen of Heaven in patriarchal culture.
I think the blogger’s explanation contains some misconceptions, but there is no space for comments on their blog (you can click on a link up top and go to a form you can fill out, but my experience with similar online forms is that they often go astray). So here's my comment: Okay, they want to call Her "Mother God" rather than Goddess. Though it's not my choice, I can understand that; I think we need to make room for variety and personal preference. What mystifies me about this post (and the tone elsewhere on this blog and website) is the apparent need to separate themselves from anything "Goddess" to the point of stating inaccurately (with an apparent ignorance of the Goddess movement born of feminism) that "we appear to be one of the few sites that actually reject patriarchy, while most 'goddess' cults wholeheartedly embrace the patriarchal movement." Wha?Huh? Anyway, if this interests you, do go over and read the entire post. And then if you want, let me (and our readers) know what you think by commenting here.

Did we miss an item you think is important? We’d like to know about it, so please leave it as a comment.


At Thursday, October 29, 2009 12:04:00 PM, Anonymous Flutterby said...

re: the weblog for our mother-god post, so many misconceptions its hard to know where to begin, but how about this one, where they say people who call the divine Goddess are involved in, and I quote:
"the "demotion" of Our Mother God to the inferior elements of earth and moon while the male "gods" usurp Her position as Queen of Heaven and Solar Spirit."

this is, to put it mildly, a misconception. people who honor the Goddess INCLUDE the earth and the moon (and in what way are they "inferior?????"--that is a hangover from patriarchal thinking)but the Goddess also exists in ALL the universe, not just the earth and the moon. Just for one example, here's a line from The Charge of the Goddess:
"Hear the words of the Star Goddess, the dust of whose feet are the hosts of heaven, whose body encircles the universe."


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Judith Laura

More blogs about /goddess/feminist theology/spiritual feminism/pagan/feminist spirituality/.