[Warning to the people who know me IRL: this gets personal at the end and might be a little awkward.]
So …. I’ve picked up a few new readers in the last weeks. Welcome to the Obsidian Dream, folks: it’s good to have you along for the ride. As of last week I know have more “followers” here than I had back on blogger, and (although I know there’s some overlap between the two, and that many of my beloved readers don’t use those buttons for whatever reason) that feels pretty damn good. My monthly hits aren’t quite what they were, but I haven’t actually been keeping up with the posting that well these last couple months, either, and I suspect those facts are closely related. I’m grateful to have you all.
Things have been interesting here in the Satyr’s life: working in the mall to cover rent and summer spending money, living with Aradia for the summer, studying my Attic Greek (but not enough), the whole HPF main ritual drama and the continuing fallout, researching my planned switch from disposable razors to a straight edge (not because it’s superbutch, which is almost creepy enough to be a reason not to do it) but because it’s more environmentally sustainable), my car breaking down earlier this week, getting ready for Sannafrid coming out to visit next week, and getting ready for the giant fucking party we’re going to have while she’s here.
I’ve been doing some visionary work, but haven’t yet reached a point where I can provide an interesting narrative about it. The Moon has a lot to teach me, but it seems like I have to fuck shit up for the correct information they’ve imparted to rise to the surface (“No, man, like this: like I showed you already.”)
I’ve been working images of Venus and the Moon, inspired by my work with the Moon Talisman at Heartland and based on more of the descriptions from Christopher Warnock’s Picatrix translation. This has been a technical challenge, but super-fun. I plan to do at least one Picatrix-based image for each planet. Posts for each of those are forthcoming upon their completion.
Progress in my ceremonial studies has slowed greatly. Partly because I’ve been resting, partly because I’ve been researching, and partly because I’ve been devoting a lot of time to try to actually understand what I’ve already learned. The biggest things I’ve gotten done in this regard, lately, is downloading AstroWin and Morinus Tradional as potential alternatives Astrolog. Further, my studies have also been slightly hampered by the ever-clearer knowledge that, while many planetary magic techniques are really interesting and awesome (electional talisman construction, for example), my own talents slant so hard toward visionary work that ceremonialism, Hermetics and astrological magic will always be peripheral to my practice. They’re good, solid tools—fun to use and especially to make–but never my favorites.
Two things have consumed the last week more than anything else, though: emailing back and forth with the HSA Sacred Experience Committee regarding the horrible ritual, and getting ready for Sannafrid’s visit.
I have, to date, exchanged nearly a score of emails with the head of the Sacred Experience Committee and a couple other people involved in the ritual planning and execution. The initial emails were heated; since we have begun negotiating a face-to-face meeting (moderated by the former head of the SEC, an individual whom I respect greatly), things have calmed a little. The meeting will take place tomorrow, and a full report on the exchange will be forthcoming, as will be analysis of how I feel this event was exemplary of what I feel to be one of the greatest failures of the neo-Pagan and magical communities today: a deep and unexamined investment in the patriarchy which poisons all of our lives.
Although an altogether happy occasion (as opposed to the other, which might turn out well or might finish ruining Heartland for me), Sannafrid’s visit will be, in some ways, an equally iconic rejection of the mainline narratives which dominate our lives as people with one foot in the “Muggle” world: I’m not just involved in deeply loving relationships with two different women. Although they have never met, they have always known about each other, and next week my “girlfriend at school” is going to come visit me while I’m living with my “girlfriend at home”. I don’t even know where to begin counting all the “rules” we’re breaking, let alone deconstructing them, so I’m just going to go for the lulz: Sannafrid is actually going to arrive while Aradia is away on a business trip. Yeah. We’re all emotionally mature grown ups, capable of negotiating such potentially treacherous waters, but there is a lot of negotiating and triple-checking that needs to be done (in addition to all the housecleaning) to ensure that everyone’s on the same page about what is and isn’t going down, and that everyone’s anxieties are being allayed and that everyone’s needs are being fulfilled.
The fact that both of these events are happening (and could only happen) while Venus is fucking retrograde is … interesting. Also: this shit. WTF, life? Man, am I glad that I made those Venus talismans.
All of this is to say that, while I’ll be doing a lot of magic in the next ten to twenty days, and finishing out some Big Shit Already In The Works (including at least one more write-up from HPF), it’s probably going to continue to be a month of light posting. Welcome to my wild and crazy life.
1 – Referring to people who don’t practice magic, see ghosts, or talk to spirits. On the one hand, I hate this Harry Potter-born neologism. On the other hand, it’s so much less problematic and idiotic than any of the alternatives I’ve heard or used: normal, once-born, cowan, mundane, uninitiated, blind, mortal.
2 – The best part is that, although it will work out for the best in some ways, we didn’t plan it that way. The dates for the business trip came down weeks after the dates for the visit were set.
3 – Wondering how this is related to magic or to my spiritual practice? Click here.