9/1/06

Mourning your past

As we work with our shadows, we find that we need to mourn the things in the past that hurt us. Some times we need to express our rage as well. These poems are the fruit of such things, written a few years ago.

Screaming
No!
No more! No more blood, no more pain!
Make it STOP!

Heaving groans
Pained tears
All I think is of the years
Years forgotten
Years lost
Stolen from me
By his lust
Oh if I could curse you
If I could lay a bloody mark
On your lying, bitter heart
All I think is of the start
Start of star crossed love
Start of painful words
Start of cursing body, flesh and bone
All by the touch of your hand
I'm burnt, you're the brand

Don't hurt me! Don't touch me, you lying wretch!
Leave me be, let me sleep.
Oh gods, give me peace.

I wished to die
Those days with you
And now that time is thru
Still I find I want to weep
I want to cry
I want to curse this heart
For loving you

How can I hate
He that I loved?
How can I forgive
The crimes he cast?
My flesh is spurned
By holy eyes
I'm whispered to be the cause
Of his crime

Why am I punished and he is fine?

What did I do? I never lied to you.
I never cheated, stole, or insulted you.
It's not my fault! What could I do?


Moaning
Oh Goddess
You weep with me
The skies open with cold rain
Yes, you weep with me

My blood is cursed
My body razed
Like a sacred temple
The invader broke in
They tried to take the sacred

Oh Goddess
You weep with me
The skies open with cold rain
Yes, you weep with me

I am your scared priestess
I, the wounded
The bleeding, the weeping,
I bear the message of pain

Oh Goddess
You weep with me
The skies open with cold rain
Yes, you weep with me


Melting

Reposted: Dark night of the soul 3 (2003)

There is a plethora of authors who reference the work of CG Jung. I have also made reference, based of the information that I had available through those authors and my classes in Psychology. I didn't realize just how little information was given to us in those classes or just how little the authors explain of Jung's theories until I sat down and actually read his theories as recorded by a graduate student that worked as his assistant for several years. As I read Jung's theories, I discovered that much of what he presented in his theories coincides very closely to Freud and I was forced to disagree with his idea of how the psyche is constructed and how it functions.

I realized that much of what was presented by the current authors in the Wiccan and Pagan community is a combination of excerpts from his work that make some sembelance of sense when they stand alone. When the concept such as the Archetypes is taken in the context of the whole of Jung's theory, it presents an almost disturbing image of the mind as this teeming but stagnant pool of sludge. Jung essentially argues that we're controlled by base instincts and our higher mind is but an illusion that we use to placate ourselves and fool others into thinking that we're at a higher evolutionary status then animals. It is a concept that deeply disturbs me and strikes me as implicitly flawed when one recalls that Jung was one of the founding fathers of cognitive psychology.

Many of the contemporary Wiccan documents point to texts such as Leland's Aradia, The Witch's Rede, and the work of Robert Graves (ex. The White Goddess). As I read Leland's Aradia and I researched that particular text, I discovered that Leland had a history of plagarism and large portions of the text were fiction that Leland invented to palace between excerpts from an obscure Italian opera that he plagarized and botched renditions of early Tuscan mythology of Diana and Apollo. The often quoted "ancient" text of The Witch's Rede is actually Doreen Valentine's frequently plagarized poem, a modern text written to express her beliefs. It was the discovery as to Graves's work that I found most disturbing because his work influenced a very prominant anthropological theory and a foundational concept of Wicca.

In an autobiographical note by Graves, he states that the entire work of his book The White Goddess was fiction. This book has had an enormous impact on the literature of the Pagan movement in the United States, at least. It also may have been, with Jung's theories, a part of the concepts that gave birth to what I've come to call the matrifocal Golden Age myth. This is a modern myth that has unfortunately been upheld as anthropological fact where there is no basis for such an argument. It is argued that the people of the LaTiene period (the late Neolithic period of history) lived in a matrifocal/matriarchal society that worshiped a Great Goddess. The introduction of the God came with the Aryan Invasion, as well as the shift away from the idyllic agrarian culture.

Unfortunately, anthropological and archeological evidence does very little to prove the societial elements of this myth. At best, it is inconclusive and delegates the necessity for one not to commit to one theory for the sake of progression in the research. An utter lack of written records makes it virtually impossible to determine with a signifigant measure of certianty that the theological elements of the myth are correct. It's impossible in the light of this very simple fact to say that Wiccans or any other form of the Craft has an unbroken lineage from this period. We simply don't know what happened in that period of history, until we do, one can only say it is possible.

How can one build a religious system on the foundation as unstable as this? And this is before we consider the early figures of what one might call modern witchcraft, such as Alexander Gardner. Many of the individuals involved in the mystery cults that were becoming popular during Gardner's literary career were known charlatans and frauds. Some had severe psychologial illness, such as Alister Crowley. Going back before these individuals to the mystery cults of the 1700s, there is an increase in the numbers of unscrupleous individuals involved in these groups. Also, these mystery cult members were staunch Christians who were using the language of the cults for the sake of expressing political and ideological concepts that were potentially very dangerous.

Ceremonial magic was more a tool of showmanship then serious study at that point in time. The fact that the majority of the Founding Fathers of the United States were members of the FreeMason's society were because of the fact that the FreeMasons were the elite's political hiding place. Their expression of liberty and freedom were couched in the pesudo-religious terms of the mystery cult and thus escaped the detection of the Crown.

All of these things combine to place me in a very uncomfortable postion. Do I continue to believe as I have in the face of what I learned, willfully rejecting the truth before me? Or, do I start my spiritual search over again at square 1, feeling angry at the lies that were touted as truths?

It is a difficult question to face.

Reposted: Dark night of the soul 2 (2003)

I'm not sure how to approach the questions that currently are before me. These questions are profoundly simple, and yet very complex in their implications. I suppose I should share with you all the research that I have recently been engaged in and the results that I have found thus far.

Recently, I've been attempting to track down "primary documents" that the major authors in the Wiccan community uphold as their sources. This has been an interesting task and has lead to quite a bit of interesting reading. Unfortunately, I find myself very shaken in my beliefs because of the unstable basis that I have uncovered in my research of the body of literature available to a student or practitioner of Wicca.

I noticed that many of the contemporary authors will cross reference each other. It fills up quite a bit of white space, but it doesn't really give the source of the concept that is being present as fact when these authors lead you on a search of 50 to 60 texts to start getting to references that are outside of this group of authors. Interestingly, this cross referencing happens the most within the authors published by Llewellen.

Eventually, I found myself getting to authors that referenced earlier texts and drew from them for information. This lead me initially to the work of the late Joseph Cambell. Several authors, I found, drew very accuractely from his interpretation of mythology. Others, however, seemed to list his name and what they wrote had little, if any basis, in his work. Then I found myself lead to the late Victorian texts of anthroplogy, history, and mythology.

As a student of history, I am aware that much of the Victorian standards of research in these fields were based on how many people you can impress and just how shocking could you make the tale. Like the Wicker Man and gruesome human sacrifices that are now part of the stereotype of the practitioners of Druidism. It makes these texts very poor sources. Also, the heavy taint of the Victorian baises makes it virtually impossible to accurately recreate some of the materials they presented in a method that could possibly be in accordance with our more stringent and exacting modern standards of research.

This, combined with the excessive verbage of several authors, made these works very difficult to read. Unfortunately, I found myself in a position where I had to diregaurd many of the Victorian source documents as historically or anthropologically valid as discussions of an earlier period of time because of just how flawed the information presented was when compared to current re-examinations of these documents. It was very fustraiting, because viertually all of the authors that I read relied heavily on several Victorian historical texts and texts on mythology.

Reposted: Dark night of the soul 1 (2003)

Dark night of the soul ...

First, I must say greetings to you all. It has been quite a while since I was online, and there has been quite a bit happening in my life of late. Much more then I can state here, but I am glad to be back. I apologize for my long absence.

Now for the point of what I hinted at in the subject line. St. John of the Cross described a harrowing experience as the Dark Night of the Soul. Now, I find myself in the mist of perhaps such a harrowing.

It is as though I have become lost on my very own path and hidden within a cloud of confusion. As I have continued my research into the history of Wicca and the promanent authors that have generated such a vast body of literature for us students to use, I have found that much is based in falsehood and half-truths. I'm finding myself thinking that a bald lie is better then a half truth right now, because I am so shaken in my beliefs.

I now do not know what I can say I believe, or if I truly do believe in anything. If anyone else has experienced such a... saddening and bewildering experience, please share it with me. I know a few things I can hold as truths, but the things that I thought were spiritual truths have been shown to me as lies.

Few things have shaken me as this has. I am thankful that I have learned that what I was using as a basis of my beliefs were not true, it has kept me from doing harm. Now, I don't know where to go.