March 24th, 2006

chi6

Bless my phallus.

The weather here has, over the last few days, taken a turn for the abysmal. And it's taken my mood with it. This house has little if anything in the way of insulation. If I keep both space heaters running on "HI" I can keep my office warm enough, but the rest of the house in an icebox. Outside, it looks like spring. It just doesn't feel like it. We're told things will get better sometime around the middle of next week, which seems a thousand years away.

There's not much to say about yesterday. It was too cold to have anything like a pleasant walk. I didn't begin a vignette or do much of anything else. Even the distraction of Wikipedia failed to hold my interest. Mostly, I sat and stared at the screen. Or bitched at Spooky about the foul weather, as though she could do anything about it. I have to break the inertia today. I have to move forward. Frell this unseasonal cold. Things did get better last night. After dinner, we read Angela Carter, "The Snow Child" and "The Werewolf." I began to have ideas, about possible vignettes and stories and Joey LaFaye. I think there's something about a fairie carnival that I'm going to try to begin today. Sweet William and Spooky's new "feylien" and others, and, in some way, it may even prove to be background for novel number next. I won't know until I try. The thing about the carnival, well obviously I have to steer clear of Something Wicked This Way Comes and Katherine Dunn's Geek Love. But I like the idea of a band of fairies who've been exiled, perhaps, and wander the world as a strange carnival. Or maybe they're all that's left of Fairie. These are just stray thoughts that may or may not coalesce into something more. Stray thoughts are much more than I've had for the past two days.

After Angela Carter, I set out to work on the wording for a New Moon ritual and was immediately met with the sort of Wiccan gender polarity and heterocentrism that's been giving me so much cause for consternation lately. Some of this might be excusable, this constant concern for human and agricultural fertility, if there were not 6.5 billion people on the planet, or if any significant portion of this society were still agricultural. Asking the "goddess" to bless wombs and phalluses. Bah. I have about as much use for such a ritual as I have for another billion humans. Anyway, Spooky and I must have spent a couple of hours talking and reading, looking at many different and more or less equally unacceptable New Moon rituals, struggling with the problem of the god and goddess, man and woman, spear and cauldron, carrot and onion dip, whatever. And then, suddenly, it seemed so simple to me. Something I should have seen from the start. Earlier last night I was watching something on the Science Channel, a geologist in the Australian outback, and he stooped down and laid his palm flat against a slab of fossil stromatolites. He said, "These are your great, great, great, great, great, great grandparents." Of course, in truth he needed a few hundred million or so more "greats," but it was the correct sentiment. For me, this isn't about men and women and their gods. For me, this is about all of it, all of our forebears, everything which has ever lived and ever shall.

Anyway, after all the frustration with this heterocentric nonsense, I suggested that it's not an issue of inserting a Divine Androgyne, but of losing the emphasis on the god and goddess. Call them the Old Ones, instead, or the Elder, some word or phrase which means "all who have come before and are here now and will come after, all who will ever be." Lose the emphasis on sexual reproduction, as it's biased towards heterosexual humans, towards placental mammals, towards animals, and excludes the majority of the history of life on Earth. What would the religion of an alien race look like if that species were asexual? If they had no concept of gender or sexual orientation? And that's a good start. I can still use an idol of Morrigan or the Horned God for focus, but I could with equal validity use a trilobite fossil or a deer antler. I could use a polished slab of stromatolites from the Australian outback. This is about recognizing pattern and the interconnectedness of the universe, of all the universe, living and non-living, sentient and non-sentient, past, present, and future. And, in so remembering that this was my goal at the start, the prejudices and vulvic/phallic/coital/uteral obsessions of Wicca fell away. I think a Nature religion should be a Nature religion, not another way of putting humans at the center of things. It should incorporate biology, geology, paleontology, astronomy, chemistry, all the Natural Sciences. It should acknowledge that we know things the Celts didn't know, that our "gods" and "goddesses," our archetypes and divine metaphors, cannot be the same as their's, that "gods" and "goddesses" must also evolve.

After two thirty, Spooky read some of Dracula aloud, Lucy Westenra getting sicker and sicker, and I drifted off to sleep, my mind too filled with all these thoughts, with the germs of new stories and the solutions to our ritual dilemmas. And that was yesterday. Please have a look at the eBay auctions. Thanks!

Oh, and in case you've not heard, the elected yahoos of Mississppi are trying the ram some new bit of anti-choice legislation into law. Because, goodness knows, we need more unwanted children in the world and, well, obviously women should not be trusted with the care of their own bodies. Click the banner below for details:

prochoicemississippi.org: prochoice, proactive