On Friday, Newt Gingrich, Mike Huckabee, and Oliver North visited Rock Church in Hampton Roads, Virginia to give a three-hour long lecture on “Rediscovering God in America.” The speakers warned the audience about the “continuing availability of abortion, the spread of gay rights, and attempts to remove religion from American public life and school history books.” The Virginia-Pilot reported that Gingrich argued that, while Christianity is the foundation of American citizenship, Americans are experiencing a period where they are being “surrounded by paganism”:
GINGRICH: I am not a citizen of the world. I am a citizen of the United States because only in the United States does citizenship start with our creator. [...] I think this is one of the most critical moments in American history. We are living in a period where we are surrounded by paganism.
Huckabee also equated America’s victory against the British in the Revolutionary War with the right-wing’s success in the Proposition 8 fight in California as being miracles “from God’s hand.”
Hampton Roads does have a v active Pagan community.
To paraphrase the psychotic Glenn Beck: they don't surround us; we surround them.
In this moral universe, all activities, events, and entities are related, and so it doesn't matter what kind of existence an entity enjoys -- whether it is human or otter or star or rock -- because the responsibility is always there for it to participate in the continuing creation of reality. Life is not a predatory jungle, "red in tooth and claw," as Westerners like to pretend, but is better understood as a symphony of mutual respect in which in each player has a specific part to play. We must be in our proper place and we must play our role at the proper moment. So far as humans are concerned, because we came last, we are the "younger [sisters]" of the other life-forms, and therefore have to learn everything from these other creatures. The real interest of old Indians would then be not to discover the abstract structure of physical reality, but rather to find the proper road to walk down which, for the duration of a person's life, that person is supposed to walk.
When I was a v new witch, almost all the Llewellyn books that I bought contained a spell for making charms to keep evil from your door. They were almost exactly like the one described below, although I don't remember naval lint:
Take a small heart-shaped piece of leather, a handful of iron nails, eight brass pins, a lock of hair, some nail clippings, a pinch of navel fluff and place them in a bottle. Then add a pint of urine, seal the bottle and bury it by your front door — this is the recipe for warding off a witch’s curse.
The article claims the charm was used to ward off "a witch's curse," but I'm not sure how they know that from the contents. Perhaps the person who assembled these ingredients was a witch, warding off evil?
At any rate, TimesonLine, grow the fuck up and find a different picture. Do you use pictures meant to insult Jews, showing them with big noses and bags full of gold, in articles about ancient Jewish artifacts? Do you show pictures meant to insult Catholics, showing them kissing the pope's ass and drinking too much, in articles about ancient Catholic artifacts?
An interesting point concerning the fallout of this weekend's terrorist act by domestic christofascist terrorists, who shot a doctor on his way into church:
Since Dr. Tiller performed late-term abortions, the terrorists and their media enablers have taken to implying, and, in many cases outright lying about, the "invalid" reasons behind those abortions. Those of us who are not pro-coat-hanger, often respond with heart-wrenching stories about women who wanted a child and found out late in their pregnancy that they were carrying a fetus so severely damaged that it would not be viable after birth. We report how sad the abortion made the woman (and her partner) and believe that we've countered the terrorists' lies.
The danger here is to allow the terrorists to set the terms of the debate. Abortion must be a woman's choice, regardless of her reasons. We can't allow the question to become whether or not the woman had a "good enough" reason for the abortion. And women needn't "pay" for their right to an abortion by being sad about it. For many women, abortion brings a sense of relief, control over their own lives, resolution.
It's also been fascinating to watch the pro-coat-hanger crowd scream that nobody better try to use this recent act of terrorism to "score political points" against them. Dudes. People who waive around gigantic signs of bloody fetuses outside abortion clinics and screech at the women entering them don't get to tell the rest of us about using things to score political points.
Ladies! Listen up! Detecting breast cancer early is the key to surviving it! Breast Self Exams (BSEs) can help you to detect breast cancer in its earlier stages. So, on the first of every month, give yourself a breast self-exam. It's easy to do. Here's how. If you prefer to do your BSE at a particular time in your cycle, calendar it now. But, don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
And, once a year, get yourself a mammogram. Mammograms cost between $150 and $300. If you have to take a temp job one weekend a year, if you have to sell something on e-Bay, if you have to go cash in all the change in various jars all over the house, if you have to work the holiday season wrapping gifts at Macy's, for the love of the Goddess, please go get a mammogram once a year.
Or: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention pays all or some of the cost of breast cancer screening services through its National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program. This program provides mammograms and breast exams by a health professional to low-income, underinsured, and underserved women in all 50 states, six U.S. territories, the District of Columbia, and 14 American Indian/Alaska Native organizations. For more information, contact your state health department or call the Cancer Information Service at 1-800-4-CANCER.
Send me an email after you get your mammogram and I will do an annual free tarot reading for you. Just, please, examine your own breasts once a month and get your sweet, round ass to a mammogram once a year.
I think that I owe several of you readings. If you have a deck, pick three cards and e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'll email you back your reading. If you don't have a deck, go to Lunea's tarot listed on the right-hand side in my blog links. Pick three cards from her free, on-line tarot and email me at email@example.com. I'll email you back your reading.
The moon is always female and so am I although often in this vale of razorblades I have wished I could put on and take off my sex like a dress and why not? Do men always wear their sex always? The priest, the doctor, the teacher all tell us they come to their professions neuter as clams and the truth is when I work I am pure as an angel tiger and clear is my eye and hot my brain and silent all the whining grunting piglets of the appetites. For we were priests to the goddesses to whom were fashioned the first altars of clumsy stone on stone and leaping animal in the wombdark caves, long before men put on skirts and masks to scare babies. For we were healers with herbs and poultices with our milk and careful fingers long before they began learning to cut up the living by making jokes at corpses. For we were making sounds from our throats and lips to warn and encourage the helpless young long before schools were built to teach boys to obey and be bored and kill.
I wake in a strange slack empty bed of a motel, shaking like dry leaves the wind rips loose, and in my head is bound a girl of twelve whose female organs all but the numb womb are being cut from her with a knife. Clitoridectomy, whatever Latin name you call it, in a quarter of the world girl children are so maimed and I think of her and I cannot stop. And I think of her and I cannot stop.
If you are a woman you feel the knife in the words. If you are a man, then at age four or else at twelve you are seized and held down and your penis is cut off. You are left your testicles but they are sewed to your crotch. When your spouse buys you, you are torn or cut open so that your precious semen can be siphoned out, but of course you feel nothing. But pain. But pain.
For the uses of men we have been butchered and crippled and shut up and carved open under the moon that swells and shines and shrinks again into nothingness, pregnant and then waning toward its little monthly death. The moon is always female but the sun is female only in lands where females are let into the sun to run and climb.
A woman is screaming and I hear her. A woman is bleeding and I see her bleeding from the mouth, the womb, the breasts in a fountain of dark blood of dismal daily tedious sorrow quite palatable to the taste of the mighty and taken for granted that the bread of domesticity be baked of our flesh, that the hearth be built of our bones of animals kept for meat and milk, that we open and lie under and weep. I want to say over the names of my mothers like the stones of a path I am climbing rock by slippery rock into the mists. Never even at knife point have I wanted or been willing to be or become a man. I want only to be myself and free.
I am waiting for the moon to rise. Here I squat, the whole country with its steel mills and its coal mines and its prisons at my back and the continent tilting up into mountains and torn by shining lakes all behind me on this scythe of straw, a sand bar cast on the ocean waves, and I wait for the moon to rise red and heavy in my eyes. Chilled, cranky, fearful in the dark I wait and I am all the time climbing slippery rocks in a mist while far below the waves crash in the sea caves; I am descending a stairway under the groaning sea while the black waters buffet me like rockweed to and fro.
I have swum the upper waters leaping in dolphin's skin for joy equally into the nec- cessary air and the tumult of the powerful wave. I am entering the chambers I have visited. I have floated through them sleeping and sleep- walking and waking, drowning in passion festooned with green bladderwrack of misery. I have wandered these chambers in the rock where the moon freezes the air and all hair is black or silver. Now I will tell you what I have learned lying under the moon naked as women do: now I will tell you the changes of the high and lower moon. Out of necessity's hard stones we suck what water we can and so we have survived, women born of women. There is knowing with the teeth as well as knowing with the tongue and knowing with the fingertips as well as knowing with words and with all the fine flickering hungers of the brain.
After dining a little more than two hours at Blue Hill, a West Village restaurant touted by New York magazine as a "seminal Greenmarket haven" that features food grown by chef and owner Dan Barber on his upstate farm, the president and first lady headed to the Belasco Theater to make it in time for "Joe Turner's Come and Gone." The trip out highlights Mrs. Obama's commitment to local, sustainable agriculture. And, showing herself to be a true woman after my own heart, she's reported to have had two martinis with her dinner, while the President drank wine.
No word on what the Obamas ordered, but I'd have had: THIS MORNING'S FARM EGG, MORELS, RAMPS AND PINE NUTS to start, followed by: GRASS FED LAMB, ASPARAGUS, BROCCOLI RABE AND FIDDLEHEAD FERNS. I almost always go for the cheese tray over sweets, and Blue Hill's cheese tray looks lovely, but I'd have finished with: STEAMED ALMOND BREAD, BLUE HILL FARM MILK, MARMALADE AND MARINATED CITRUS just because it sounds so hobbity.
The Republicans, as usual, acted like dicks:
even before the smaller jet left Washington, the there-and-back trip drew criticism from the Republican National Committee. The RNC issued a news release that chastised Obama for saying he understands American's troubles, but then hopping up to New York for "a night on the town."
Noting that General Motors is expected to file for Chapter 11 protection on Monday, the news release said: "Putting on a show: Obamas wing into the city for an evening out while another iconic American company prepares for bankruptcy."
You know, Republicans, most of America thinks that you're mean-spirited assholes. You don't need to keep confirming it. You never minded how many times W flew down to Crawford to "clear brush" coughtieoneoncough. The Obamas are a young couple who apparently enjoy each other's company. No one thinks it's improper for them to have an occasional night out. Lay off the "he ordered orange juice," "he ate mustard," "he took his wife out for dinner so he hates America" bullshit. It isn't working anymore.
I'm a woman, a Witch, a mother, a grandmother, an eco-feminist, a gardener, a reader, a writer, and a priestess of the Great Mother Earth. Hecate appears in the
Homeric Ode to Demeter, which tells of Hades who caught Persophone
"up reluctant on his golden car and bare her away lamenting. . . . But no one, either of the deathless gods or of mortal men, heard her voice, nor yet the olive-trees bearing rich fruit: only tenderhearted Hecate, bright-coiffed, the daughter of Persaeus, heard the girl from her cave . . . ."