Saturday, August 29, 2015

How dare you support occult watchdogs!

This is what I am supposed to be--a nice miltant fluff bunny who accepts that everyone is perfect just the way that they are. 
Occasionally, I get emails and instant messages from people who say, "How dare you support the occult watchdog community! It is none of their business that I am misleading occult students while stuffing my wallet with overpriced dues and class fees."

My response tends to be, "Bite me! You are a crook and a danger to the occult community. It is only a matter of time before you make the papers and give the entire community a black eye, so why should we wait for the Christmas rush? Let's just air the fact that you are a human speed bump, and get it over with."

Sometimes, the next message will be a threat that a lawyer is coming to take away my first-born child; sometimes, it is silence; and every so often it is "Just wait until the watchdog community decides to air your dirty laundry! I can't wait until the shoe is on the other foot. They are coming for you because you are a bigger crook and menace than I am."

At this point in time, I tend to disturb at least one of my cats with my howls of uncontrollable laughter.

Then I write back, "Exactly what would the occult watchdogs reveal that is not public knowledge already?"

Typically, I get silence back.

But seriously, what could the occult watchdog community reveal that would make them the enemy?

The worst thing I believe is the fact that I write dubious erotica, something that I have admitted to numerous times. Dubious erotica is where the dirty, filthy money is at. Yes, I am one of those writers that believes that you should never write anything for free. After all, I have a monthly Petsmart bill to pay. Ok, maybe they could reveal the exact types of dubious erotica, my list of pen-names, and the titles of my stuff.....and I imagine that no one will actually care. And let's be honest, I would just turn such a situation into a fire sale--"Come one, come all! Read the horrible stuff that I have written, so that I do not need to live off of dues collected from gullible occult students. Because ripping off occult students is so much better than writing dubious erotica." (And no, I am not going to give you the list---just because I am a "sex-worker," it doesn't mean that I have to give you my number---after all, I prefer not knowing who actually reads that rubbish.)

Of course, they might also reveal that my non-erotic stuff on Amazon is over-priced, and not true to some standard of "being stuff that is thousands of years old and sounds like pure fluff." Yes, a lot of my stuff was written and created last Thursday. Oh, the horrors of them seeing my Amazon author page.

Or they might reveal that I am working on some humorous occult community satire (under another pen-name that is none of your business...but which I have made absolutely no effort to distance myself from; so once I publish, everyone will know that it is me within...a week, maybe two weeks, not longer than a month).

Or the horrors of my Deviant Art page.

Or my Gamecrafter page (over-priced fugly Tarot deck coming soon some time in the future).

Or my Etsy page (over-priced occult themed audios coming soon some century).

What else could the occult watchdogs reveal?

Well, I have a shaky lineage in both Wicca and Golden Dawn. And I don't have a giant stack of unpublished material written by a dead white guy pretending to be a caveman.

And I dropped out of Pat Zalewski's Inner Order course during the Adept Major section---that has to be proof that I am ripping someone off.

There is also the fact that I only have a Bachelors degree. Well, two actually (literature and history). But I have not finished a Masters program...and that somehow must be an occult crime--because you know that I have to have some dirt that the watchdog community can use against me.

Oh, the watchdog community might reveal that I have dabbled with Satanism, Thelema, Daemonaltry, and Chaos magic....and who hasn't?!

Maybe they will mention that I have been unemployed forever...because being a writer and artist and self-employed is not being true to the American way of slaving away for fat cats at the top of the economic totem pole. (And as a writer, I always accept donations of food and money...because artists be straving.)

Speaking of cats, the watchdog community might publish mugshots of all my cats....because cats are not dogs, and must be evil.

I once had a black girlfriend, a gay roommate, a couple of failed business ventures, was in the military a whole eight weeks---damn it! There has to be something that I have hidden that the occult watchdogs are going to go berserk over.

Oh I know---I was elected to lodge office by a group of not-yet-Neophytes; that is wrong. No one should actually be elected by students to teach. Everyone knows that the proper way to do things is to declare yourself Grand Poobah and give no one an ounce of control.

And there is the little fact that my lodge split into two. That is worrisome because there is absolutely no way that the Freemasons in the group could have been upset with Morgan's sense of humor and unwillingness to advance people before he felt that they were ready. No, the lodge split had to be because Morgan was collecting excessive annual dues. (Yes, they were excessive at sixty dollars a year---after all, the leader of a group is supposed to pay for all the materials consumed during ritual and lessons.)

Oh. Oh. Oh. I know the worst that the occult watchdogs could reveal.

I believe in gun-control and the legalization of marijuana. That means that I am some type of hippy. And not only do I believe in legal weed, I am guilty of smoking pot. And yes, the occult watchdogs are going to be all over that fact, ain't they?

Did I miss anything? Oh yeah, I don't accept every student that applies--that is suspicious. And I don't teach things that I do not know...that is not how it is supposed to be done.

Oh wait, I do teach some dubious occult lore---I am a Sun Sigh astrologer. Yes, we finally found something that the occult watchdogs will actually care soon as others quit trying to poison people, and hexing people, and generally helping themselves to all the money in other people's wallets.

Yes, the occult watchdogs are coming for me, but I think that I am on the end of a very long list of crooks and false prophets. So no, I am not really concerned that they are going to come after me.

And that is why I can support the occult watchdog community. Because quite honestly, I am not doing anything wrong that they actually care about.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Foresee buttloads of ewk! in your future

Are you sure you want to ask this?
Today on Facebook, someone asked, "I was wanting to know if someone can send me a photo [of] what we should do during each moon phase? I'm still learning and it would be helpful."

This person obviously has a greater trust of humanity, especially of those inmates who frequent Facebook, than I do. I foresee buttloads of porn being sent to the person. What? Do you see them getting pictures of romping bunnies? Wait, that sounds slightly dirty. Is there anything that they might recieve that won't be slightly dirty? Oh to be a blind fly on that wall....because I am sure that you do not actually want to see what they recieve.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Devil card A or B (Tarot Art poll)

Awhile back during one of the Tarot Blog Hops, I did a version of the Devil card for my Mad Uncle Morgan's Political Tarot. I wasn't completely happy with it; so last week, I re-did the background of the card. So now, the debate is whether version A (the first version) or Version B (the new background) looks better. What do you think--A or B?

Devil version A

Devil version B

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Ouija Table (oh, I want to have one of these)

A spirit board (Ouija Board) themed table. 
This is such an awesome table. 
Oh, I just saw this on Facebook, and I so want one. It is by Brad's Page of Awesomeness.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Mercury in the small Tarot cards

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Welcome to the early August edition of the Tarot Blog Hop. (In this post, I will be discussing the effect of Mercury on five of the Minor Arcana cards.) Some of my more observant readers will promptly notice that this edition is a week behind schedule; that is due to the original scheduled wrangler having to step out to deal with a problem on her end, and a substitute wrangler stepping forward.

While researching the Wiccan holiday that this TBH is "occurring" on, our super wrangler, Joanne Sprott, noted that Lammas, also known as Lughnasad, is associated with the Irish/Celtic deity Lugh.

Lugh, a master of many trades and arts, is associated with both the Sun and the trickster planet of Mercury. In my Rite of the Magical Images of the Wiccan Wheel of the Year, the profession of the Image of Lammas is unclear, this is in part due to the importance of Lugh to his holiday, Lughnasad. "He might be a merchant; he might be a farmer; he might be a herdsman; he might be a soldier; he might be a raider [Viking]."

Likewise, it is sometimes hard to tell with the Tarot what "energy" is having the most effect. The Tarot as we know it is a combination of several sets of energies blended with one another. A card from the Minor Arcana is more than just its suit and number. Take for instance, a random card, the Five of Pentacles.

In the Golden Dawn (and groups that draw off of the lessons of the Golden Dawn), one is not only looking at the card from its suit and number; but also its associated sephirah (position on the Hebrew Tree of Life), the planet associated with the sephirah, its Mystical/Magical Title, and (in the case of the Five of Pentacles) its associated decan.

An uncolored example of the Golden Dawn version of the Five of Disks.

Some of my readers at this point are saying, "Decan?"

A decan is ten degrees of a zodiac sign. Each zodiac sign is divided into three decans, and there are thirty-six decans in the zodiac. Each decan lasts just a touch over ten days. The concept of decans comes from the Ancient Egyptians, who originally used the night sky as a calendar, using thirty-six stars to mark the beginnings of the decans (which served as the Ancient Egyptian version of a week).

In Golden Dawn, thirty-six of the small cards (Minor Arcana) of the Tarot are associated with the decans. Each decan is said to be like the energies of its sub-ruler (one of the seven classical planets) in that sign of the zodiac.

The Golden Dawn version of decan sub-rulers and their association with thirty-six Tarot cards.

In the case of the Five of Pentacles, it is associated with the first decan (00.00 to 9.99 degree) of Taurus, which is sub-ruled by Mercury. The Golden Dawn version of the card, reflects that astrological association, as well as the suit and number, associated sephirah (Geburah which is associated with Mars), and the Magical Title of the Five of Pentacles (the Lord of Material Trouble).

An colored example of the Golden Dawn Five of Disks.

In the able hands of the artist, Pamela Colman Smith, and the writer and occult authority A. E. Waite (former member of the original Order of the Golden Dawn), the Five of Pentacles was depicted as a poor shoeless woman and a man using clutches walking in the snow outside of a church.

The influence of the decan on this card is based on how the energies of Mercury reacts in an horary sense while in the sign of Taurus. The influence of Mercury on the Five of Pentacles causes the mind to focus on how dire the situation is (the half empty glass mindset). Quite often if the first card of a Tarot reading is the Five of Pentacles, the client is currently concerned with large stacks of bills (quite possibly medical bills), and their seemingly utter lack of resources.

There are four other Minor Arcana associated with decans ruled by Mercury. Let's look at how the energies of Mercury manifests in each of these cards.

Mercury has an opposite effect on the next card, the Three of Cups. Associated with the second decan of Cancer (10.00 to 19.99 degrees of Cancer) sub-ruled by Mercury, the Three of Cups is called the Lord of Abundance by Golden Dawn. Here Mercury creates a half full glass mindset, with the client being able to see lots of opportunities; many of which involve creativity or networking. The energies of Mercury and Cancer work well with the energies of the card's associated sephirah Binah (Saturn).

Mercury's energies also function well in its next associated decan card: the Ten of Pentacles (the Lord of Abundance), the third decan of Virgo (20.0 to 29.99 degrees of Virgo). Here Mercury's energies produce valuable work; and there is a decisiveness in the choices of the client, which are often practical and constructive.

In the fourth Mercury decan card, the Eight of Wands (Lord of Swiftness), the client can be a little trigger happy, a little too quick in their decision making, thanks to the effect of Mercury on the first decan of Sagittarius. Here is a place where the energies of Mercury can create what one can call "Instant Karma"--those times where the results of one's actions rapidly come to past; whether it is "good" karma or "bad" depends a lot on the decisions of the client.

The fifth and final card with a Mercury sub-ruled decan is the Six of Swords. Associated by the Golden Dawn with the second decan of Aquarius, its Magical Title is the Lord of Earned Success. The impact of Mercury on Aquarius can indicate that the client's mindset is a little unstable, and that they are taking an eccentric approach to matters at hand. There is a certain amount of detachment associated with Mercury in this position.

Each of the thirty-six cards listed in the earlier decan association chart can be explained in this manner using its respective decan, planetary sub-ruler and zodiac sign. Hopefully, this provided some understanding of this part of the composition of the small cards of the tarot.

Thanks for reading, Happy Belated Lughnasad, and hopefully you will continue onwards to the next blog post of this early August's Tarot Blog Hop.

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Thursday, August 6, 2015

Should Merriam Webster Online Dictionary change their definition of Heathen?

Today in one of the many Facebook groups that I am in, someone shared a link to a petition demanding that Merriam Webster Online Dictionary change their definition of Heathen.

The petition demanding Webster change the definition of the word Heathen. 
So how bad is Webster's definition of Heathen?

First part of the Webster's definition. 
The first part is ok (I guess), and the second part is traditional. Many writers insisted that Heathens were uncivilized.

I just happen to know a worse definition of Heathen (from the 1982 edition of the Random House College Dictionary): "an unenlightened or barbaric idolater."

Oh look, the defintion of Heathen goes back to the 12th century. 
These "insulting" definitions have been in play for a long time. At one point, the term Heathen also applied to the Muslims. Today, it is more or less, everyone who is not a Jew, Christian, or Muslim. I guess that someone decided that the Muslims are civilized.

Definition by rejection of the Bible.
One of the complaints of the petition is that the definition is based on "rejection of the God of the Bible," a god that Jews, Christians, and Muslims share...uncomfortably, but it is the same baseline god if you follow the lines of transmission and origins of these three religions. They argue that Christianity (and the rejection of) should not be in the definition....which ignores why dictionaries get used in the first place--when using a dictionary, you want them to tell you the most likely ways that a word is being used (not some idealized seldom encountered in real life definition).

But look, it is a Christian definition of Heathen.
The synoyms include Pagan which is also defined by its rejection of the god of the Old Testament, New Testament, and Quran.

The definition of Heathen for kids. 
Yes kids, Heathens are uncivilized; Christian writers have been saying that for centuries. And writers do use the term to describe people who have no civilizations or wildly different ones.

Webster would like to know why you are looking up the word Heathen.
Can we at least agree that Webster asking why you are interested in the word Heathen is at least an attempt by them to stay current with its modern usage?

The two things that are to be included in the new definition of Heathen.
Gythja Dearbhla actually says in the petition that not only does they want the reference to the Bible removed, along with the insulting "uncivilized" definition, but they also want the definition to be "a convert of the Aesir and Vanir [ancient gods of the Norse religion]" and "a Norse polytheist."

(By the way, one of my favorite definitions of Cat is actually a definition by what it is not: Cat--not a dog.)

Here is your laugh out loud moment of the day. 
The best comment (for its humor value) was someone saying that "I agree whole heartedly with this action. I do believe the wording needs the approval of a heathen majority."

I presume that Scott Mattis means ONLY Norse pagans are to be consulted.

And this is where I have to ask, "Can you even get a dozen Heathens to agree what type of light bulbs to buy?" And what about all the non-Norse Heathens? Why don't they also get a vote?

As a writer and a scholar, let me be the one to break the bad news to you. Dictionaries reflect how writers actually use words, not how you think the words should be defined by your own particular religion. If religions were allowed to pick the definitions of words, we would get stuck with the following definition of Heathen (buckle in):

Heathen: an ignorant uncivilized person who absolutely is going to Hell for refusing to accept the one true God of the Bible.

And why would we be stuck with that definition? Simply because there are far more Christians than pagans and heathens in English speaking counties, both in the present and in the past. The definitions that Webster and Random House are using are not nearly as bad as the ones that we would get if a committee got to define the word to their satisfaction.

So how do we get the definition changed? Well, a petition is useless. What changes the definition of the word are writers using it in a different manner than it was previously used. So instead of signing a petition, go to Webster Online Dictionary and tell them about instances that Heathen (and for that matter Pagan) are being used in a modern sense of "someone civilized who believes in gods other than the Jewish Christian Muslim god." If enough people do this, they will add a new section to the definition reflecting its new use. Why? Because that is how dictionaries actually define words--by how people are actually using them.

(Please note that the current definitions will remain simply because there is a few centuries of usage that says that all heathens need to be saved by the civilizing force of the one true God. Also note that I am a Heathen and Pagan...not that it will stop you from calling me bad names in the comment section.)