Saturday, June 25, 2011
Ok, so I love discovering new music. Good music, anyway. And thanks to Stephen Colbert, I found out about Florence & the Machine. Wow. Bombastic, pure emotion pouring out of Ms. Florence Welch in her voice, her movements onstage - makes me really think of Hethert. Yes, I'm sure She loves all music, but just look at that picture (stick of bells, not "authentic" but makes me think of a sistrum), then find some of the music to listen to.
Also, I'll admit, I'm thinking of my impending RPD. I try to be a "clean slate" mentally, but then I'm just watching my nightly comedy/news, and I'm hit with this amazing woman. And the urge to dance, and I feel a mental "giggle" in the back of my head. Kind of like "yeah, you know, silly."
Ok, and here's a video for ease of checking out this amazing woman + group. Also, I love geeking over this stuff.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
HELPED are those who love the Earth, their Mother, and who willingly suffer that she may not die; in their grief over her pain they will weep rivers of blood, and in their joy in her lively response to love, they will converse with the trees.
~from The Gospel According to Shug, in The Temple of my Familiar by Alice Walker
Sadly, this is only the second book by Alice Walker I've ever read, the first being her wildly famous The Color Purple. A couple of the same characters show up in this book from that one. I am not finished with it yet, but I am close, and I find it wholly stunning and sometimes heavy to read. It's taken me a long time to get through over half, but it's well worth it, to me - even if just for the three pages that make up "Shug's Gospel." I feel it would be some kind of stealing to type the whole thing out here, but I am far more moved by her beatitudes than any in the christian bible. In such a short space, spiritual, human truths about love, humanity, the Earth and cosmos, are made poetic and relevant to this world now.
One last quote - the very end of her Gospel.
HELPED are those who know.
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Ok, I'm pissed off. I'm angry. I'm also tired of certain know-it-alls.
This time, it just happens to be militant atheists. The drama started, actually, with my post about the ancient astronaut people.
For the moment, I'm a member of an ex christian forum. I link my blog to my profile there. And suddenly, someone decided to tell me that my "silly beliefs" are no better than those of people who think aliens built the pyramids because they think modern cranes can't lift more than 5 tons.
Granted, I have odd beliefs, but none of them, none of them so plainly fly in the face of actual observable fact. Not like the ancient astronaut people. Clearly, most cranes can lift more than 5 tons. Moving blocks the size of those that built the pyramids has been replicated with copper age tools in the modern age. The claims of the ancient astronaut people are patently wrong. My claims are unobservable. Doesn't make for a good argument, true, but I'm not claiming anything that is obviously wrong. That would be stupid. Nor do I proselytize, so I don't see a reason to justify what I believe - but I'm asked, all the time, to "back up my claims." I don't make claims about my beliefs. I state my beliefs, and sometimes, share my experiences.
This whole vendetta blew up into something I don't care to get into (but I was called mentally ill, so that was sweet), but I am seriously considering leaving the forum. It seems that if one leaves one religion, joining another is considered stupid and delusional. And I don't need that attitude. I don't need a fundamentalist of a different stripe.
It really appears that many I have encountered who have left fundamentalist christianity just carry their fundamentalist "I'm right and you're wrong" worldview into atheism. Anyone that browbeats me for not agreeing with them is not a person I need to be around. Both are ignorant and, frankly, complete assholes.
Just a thought to leave you all with - ex christian means no longer christian. It doesn't mean atheist.
ETA: I just want to say that I don't dislike atheists as a rule. I dislike militant people, no matter what they call themselves. That is the problem.
Saturday, June 4, 2011
I re-watched the movie X-Men last night, and it brought back a lot of memories for me. Around the same time as that movie hit the theaters, I was finding out things about myself that seemed to frighten people. I was learning things about other people, and how they were treated. Anything not "normal" was frightening and dangerous.
One can put on many lenses and see so many struggles in this movie (warning: no, I haven't read the comics, so don't get all up in my chex mix about it). At the time, I was finally accepting that I wasn't christian, and had never been, most likely. I was pretending, and what my soul was reaching for was far from what anyone around me understood. I knew some people would see me as dangerous, parents wouldn't want me to be their children's friends, the school I had just left might very well have run me out anyway, because several of the teachers would believe I had made a compact with the devil. I cried when I saw Xavier's school, because I thought a school for pagans (or simply any non-christian!) would be just amazing, an oasis in the terrifying deserted sameness of Alabama that I lived in, where if you didn't love with all your heart one of the three religions - Baptist, Methodist, or Football - you had to be corrected, or run out. Besides, Patrick Stewart as a headmaster? Win! *Geek squeak*
Of course, I identified with their basic otherness in my way. There are many kinds of "otherness", things that are more clearly unchangeable - being a different race, being gay, being left-handed, etc. I so clearly saw, in a later movie, when the government came up with a "cure" for being a mutant, the struggle of my LGBT friends. How churches and some "psychiatrists" wanted to "cure" them. Because they were "wrong." And, just like in the movie, I had the feeling that some (not all) of my friends would have taken that "cure", when they were still teens, struggling, and feeling like what their peers were saying was true - they were "wrong."
Some studies have shown that religious feeling is very much wired into our brains. If someone had found a way to "cure" my brain of its heathen ways and turn me into a good christian, would I have taken it? I could have avoided many screaming matches, much fear, a few visits from the police (called by a scared christian dorm mate) and some outright violence. Would my atheist friends have taken a way to be more like their "normal" peers? If atheism was the rule of the day, how many religious people, christian, muslim, pagan, buddhist, mystic, witch, shaman, vodouisant, would rip out that part of their brains, to avoid derision?
How far would some people go to avoid being different altogether?
But then, how many would stand up, raise their voices, and refuse to be labeled "wrong" for being outside of the norm? How big would the marches be to protest any "fix" for something that is only different, not wrong? The cry that, no matter how scared you are of us, we are people too - and sometimes, we're scared of you?
But perhaps not scared enough to be trodden down and made either subordinate, or "normal," whatever that is.
As Jimi said, "let your freak flag fly," and that's what I've chosen to do. And if I meet any mutants, I'll tell them the same.