Category: Words

April fools

Starhawk recently wrote: I think our online presence is vitally important to helping Reclaiming grow. The latest survey on religion says there are now 2.8 million Wiccans, Pagans, and ‘new religionists’ in the U.S.–more than Moslems, Quakers, Unitarians, even religiously identified Jews. We are growing while mainstream religions are shrinking.

Aside from the HellYeah I mentally uttered, it poked that spot in my brain that reads: ramble about the origins of the web, remind people who were here, inform people who were not. There has been, since the early nineties, a synergy in the evolutions of both paganism and the web. Pagans (I use the term here in it’s loosest sense) have been a huge force in shaping the evolution of the web. In the way-back-when days there was a definite disparity of representation of religious or spiritual identifications. There were more pagans online, and creating the tools and languages and early things, than any other group.

It’s no coincidence that many of the underlying truths of the web we have today reflect some of the values we tend to identify as pagan.

  • Everything is interconnected.
  • Harm none, and do what you will.
  • Viewing diversity as a strength.
  • Honoring intellectual and creative freedom.
  • Challenging old models of authority, preferring shared power and open leadership.
  • Inviting and expecting personal and collective empowerment.
  • Sustainability as an incredibly important value. except when it’s not.
  • And of course: Consensus. This is a topic large enough to warrent it’s own post/essay/book.

Like all good chicken-egg discussions, we can look at it either way. Did the pagans bring the pagan values or did the underlying paganish values bring the pagans ? Probably: both.

Today, April 1st, always makes me think of The Fool card. The Sacred Fool, the Dreamer, the risk taker, the journey off the cliff into the great unknown. THAT is what the early days of creating the Net felt like to me.

If I stick with the metaphor I guess I’m in my Temperance year now (1994 – 2009) as a tech developer, playing with the flow, blending opposites. And on my second round of High Priestess when it comes to magical practice(1984 – 2009). But when it comes to this place of combining paganism and technology, that feeling of The Fool has never really gone away.The perfect zero, the circle, the act of creation and all it’s possibilities. Yes, this a wonderful place to plant our seeds, and to help them grow. And our values, helped to create this fertile soil.

rune ruminations

I only have six left. That’s probably close enough that I will finish these, even though they are annoying me. But so is everything else these days, so it’s probably not the fault of the runes.

I think I have misjudged the runes. My expectation of them as a divination tool was pretty low, that is changing. And my overall impression was that they were full of gloom and doom, the sort of thing you’d expect from a people who lived in ice, ate lots of meat and generally glorified murder and violence. There are six left, maybe I’ll get all the violent ones in a final rush, but I’m thinking I was just wrong about runes.

Rune castings (ie layouts for reading them) are interesting. While there are lots of obviously modern tarot-ish equivalents, it looks like the runes were read as a whole. Like toss the whole bag of 24 runes on the ground and read all of them that are facing upright. That could be a lot. There’s something about it that intrigues me, like throwing a deck of cards in the air and seeing where they fall. The hell with trying to impose pseudo order, just throw em all out there and see what happens. Sounds like the way I code sometimes.

I read a great article this morning after I’d drawn Ansuz. Yep. The thing that stood out most was our language use… it’s not a War, it’s an Occupation.

Like probably everyone else, I’m looking at ways to make the runes more kinesthetic, yoga-like poses maybe. I’m sure that’s overdone.

Laima

Laima is a Goddess from Lithuainia. She is Fate, Fortune, darkness and light. Weaver and Spinner, She sings us into and out of life, the cuckoo in the linden tree. In Latvia She is Mother Laima, and on midsummers eve one may be blessed with the sight of her magical blooming fern, which opens it’s golden flower only on that night.

superhero-ness

Above is my first draft of two superhero figures for a new client proposal.  They’re based on two real women who have a pretty cool and timely concept for a startup biz. 
I know there are people really into animation, illustration etc, I’ve never been one of them.  I didn’t even like cartoons as a kid.  Or comic books. 
But I’ve had a shocking amount of fun so far starting these. I’ve also been shocked at how damn long it takes !  I am hoping that it’s simply because I’m not that familiar with vector illustration tools, that I’ll get faster as I adjust. Also, I need a durn tablet !
I wish I had time to draw everyone I know as a superhero. I’ve already asked Morgan and Ron what they would look like and started illustrating those in my head. 
I’ve spent the better part of this week thinking about super heros, looking at them, analyzing the symbolic visual language of them. There are of course fewer feminine ones than masculine, but there were more than I knew of. Superheroines are objectified and sexualized, but in the language of illustration, it’s actually fairly balanced with a corresponding objectification of the masculine. Certainly no worse than any other cultural form. 
Once these are finished (there is a lot more work to be done, these are drafts) I’ll be animating them (assuming I get the job at a rate I can live with).    Me, animating superheros.  Whodathunkit ?

2 days = 2 new clients

One definite.  One probable.  

the Universe DELIVERS.  Never doubt it.