The Consequences of Feminist Activism

It is no secret that I have been a feminist for the bulk of my life.  While I have always believed in the cause, it wasn’t until later in my life that I began to *fight* for the cause.  Life gets in the way, sometimes, of the things you really wish to do.  Marriage, work, children (whom I adore) were roadblocks in the journey that brought me to where I am today.  While medical issues may conspire against my getting out there and marching and protesting, things I would love to do, I fight in other ways.  My feminist page on Facebook, called Shakti Warrior Goddess, is my best present weapon.  It has a mix of feminism and Goddess Spirituality.  I try for a balance between the two, but invariably the feminism wins out.

Why might this be, one might ask.  It’s because this world has always been a time bomb for women.  The harder we fight, the tighter patriarchy tries to grip.  I believe patriarchy is dying a (very) slow death.  I will most likely not be here to see the end of it, unfortunately, but I know, in my heart, that it is coming.

What many people fail to understand is that feminism is not just about equal rights for women, it is about equal rights for EVERYONE, men included, as they are damaged by patriarchy as much as anyone.

The world, and the country of the US, where I live is becoming scarier by the day.  Fighting against injustice, not just against women, but against injustice everywhere and against  everyone is exhausting.  Ask any feminist who not only believes in the cause, but fights for it, and you will find one very tired woman; a woman who is tired of the rhetoric, the hatred, the intolerance, and name-calling, the harassment, the assaults, and who gets tired of fighting the good fight every……single…..day.

I look around and see a new Hitler-in-the-making in a so-called presidential candidate, daily terrorism by the actual terrorists and by the police in the street.  I see young men of color being shot down and then the inevitable retaliation.  We have guns, guns to easy to get, guns everywhere, being used to shoot innocent people, shot by those whose minds and hearts are filled with anger, fear and hate.  This is all part of feminism, whether you realize it or not.

The online harassment of feminists is a consequence we pay.  We are attacked verbally, technologically, and yes, sometimes those attacks become personal as personal information is learned and precautions have to be taken against those angry, hate-filled people.  Most of us know this is a possibility going in.

For me, I find the consequence that is hardest for me to deal with, is the burn-out.  Every so often, I get tired.  I want to give up this fight.  The things I see, hear and read hurt me emotionally, spiritually and psychically.  I get to that point where I cannot stand turning on the news, opening a newspaper, as each article, each new story, is another hit that sends me down for the count.  This has happened numerous times through the years, and I know that I am not alone in these feelings.  My feminist friends report the same.

This is where I am now.  The shooting at Pulse, the barrage of police shooting young men, the acts of Daesh (I refuse to call them the name of a Goddess), a hate-filled man running for president and his angry, nasty followers have brought me to a place where I do not like, nor wish to  be.  I know how this feels; I have felt it before, and I’m sure I will feel it again in the future.  But, for now, it is time to take a temporary step back, to find myself again and remember why I choose to fight this fight.

The writing, the blog, will continue, as it always has, but the focus will most likely temporarily change as I take this step back.   Burnout is a consequence of being a feminist activist; a consequence one must recover from.  I’m going to go recover to come back stronger.

In the meantime, I would recommend these books:

*Whatever Works: Feminists of Faith Speak

*Jesus, Mohammed and The Goddess

She Rises, Volume 1, Why Goddess Feminism, Activism and Spirituality?

*She Rises, Volume 2, How Goddess Feminism, Activism and Spirituality?

 

*Disclaimer: I am included in these Anthologies

 

Goddess Feminist Witch – To Hex or Not to Hex

GODDESS FEMINIST WITCH

To Hex or Not to Hex

A young white college-aged man, an accomplished athlete, drags an unconscious woman out of sight, takes pictures of her naked body and rapes her. He is sentenced to a mere six months in prison. His father asks leniency as his son has suffered enough for *20 minutes of action*. His mother asks for leniency, never once mentioning the woman whose life he has ruined.

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A man, who may or may not have been radicalized, goes to a gay bar in Florida and kills 49 innocent people, while injuring 53 more, some of who are in grave condition. Politicians, and media everywhere try to analyze him, his life, things that, in the long run, mean absolutely nothing because knowing *why* does not change anything for the victims, their families and their friends.

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In the US, we have a thin-skinned, bullying, racist, misogynistic, separatist braggart as one of the presumptive presidential candidates.

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All of these things are brought to you by the letter “P”, as in patriarchy. It is a common misconception that only women benefit from feminism. Feminism, if you do your research (I’m not doing it for you; I’ve already done mine), benefits women, children, people of color, the LGBT community, animals, the environment and, yes, men. Men, if they opened their eyes enough to get past their privilege would see that they suffer under patriarchy just as the rest of the world does.
While the above is all true and much could be written about any of it, it is not the crux of this article.

You may have heard that some Witches and Pagans banded together to *hex* the Stanford rapist. There is also an upcoming “Worldwide Misogyny Protest” scheduled for the Full Moon on the Summer Solstice. I can not and do not speak for all witches and/or pagans; as always, I only speak for myself and speak my own truth.

There are those that feel that both of these magickal workings are necessary. Then there are those who feel that workings such as this give spiritual, magickal feminism a bad name. I have read, from more than one woman, that anyone who has done their inner spiritual work would never take part in something like this; that it is wrong and a step in the wrong direction.

I disagree.

Back in the 1960’s, there was a phrase, *the personal is political”. It is a topic for debate as to who said it first, but that credit seems to belong to Carol Hanisch, who wrote a paper in 1969. There is much debate as to what exactly this phrase meant then and what it means now. For me, as Goddess-based Feminist, it means the same as “as above, so below”. What happens in the greater world, in politics and culture, affect each of us who live upon this Mother Earth. The politics of the nation (or the world) as a whole, affect me personally as a woman. I believe that I have an obligation to fight for what I believe in.

Also, back in the 1960’s, the founder of Dianic Wicca, Z Budapest, said “if you cannot hex, you cannot heal”. As a young Witch and Feminist, I did not believe this was so, as I tried to live by “harm none and do as you will”. I am not so young anymore, I’ve seen much, and I now believe that Z was right. Sometimes hexing is necessary.

Women, along with other oppressed groups have the right to feel a righteous anger at having their agency taken away. A woman being spiritual or Goddess-honoring does not always equal nice or passive.
If the Goddess woman/witch has done her inner work, she knows that it is never done; it is an ongoing process, a lifelong journey. She also knows about the duality of the Goddess – yes, she is innocent Maiden, nurturing Mother, wise Crone. She is a sweet breeze; she is the gentle rain. She is also the hurricane, the natural disaster. She is love; She is anger. She is forgiveness; She is unforgiving. She is mercy and compassion as Kwan Yin, but She is also vengeance and retribution as Kali/Durga.

All magic has consequences. I do not believe there is black magic or white magic; I believe it is the intent of the wielder. The duality of the Goddess is the duality of magic, as well.

So, yes, a Goddess Feminist Witch who has done her inner work CAN, and DOES does hex, and with magic and the intent of her will, maybe not only she can heal, but the world can heal, as well.
)O(

North and South – The Civil War Redux

From April of 1961 to May of 1865, the bloodiest conflict in the United States took place. This was the Civil War.

The states that fought for the North were: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Wisconsin. To these, we can add Kentucky and Missouri, which were border states that stayed with the Union.

The states that fought for the South were: South Carolina, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi.

The war was fought due to many differences between the North and South, including Southern independence, states’ rights and, yes, slavery. The president at this time was Abraham Lincoln, a Republican, who issued the Emancipation Proclamation, freeing the slaves in 1863.

Present day. It would appear that the United States is still having a civil war, again over ideology and the rights of the people, but this time with the Democrats fighting for justice and the Republicans doing what they can to stop the progress on social issues.

We start with what has been termed the Republican “War on Women”. The states that have been pushing through the most stringet laws against reproduction rights and birth control are Nebraska, Missouri, Texas, Georgia, Iowa, South Dakota, Indiana, Lousiana, North Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi, Kansas, Arizona, Florida and Virginia. Compare this list of states with the list of states who fought for the South. The other two states with harsh laws on abortion and a woman’s right to choose are New Jersey and Pennsylvania; while both are Northern states, they are both ruled with a Republican majority.

For example, Kansas has a bill to require consent from both parents if a one is under 18, unless family sexual abuse is involved. So, I guess if you have been sexually abused by someone in your family, it is fine to have an abortion. The Kansas governor also wants to make it harder to open clinics or even have the option available.

Texas has a bill that mandates forced ultrasound; this was put forth by their last governor. Arkansas does not want abortion covered under any insurance policy, thereby forcing women to purchase a separate rider, “just in case”. Meanwhile, Oklahoma and Kentucky would require *mandatory* ultrasounds and the woman *must* look at it; if she refuses, the technician is required to describe the image to her. Ohio has the heartbeat bill, which is effectively a ban on abortion.

Let’s not forget Arizona who wants takes it a step further by saying that a pregnancy starts on the date of a woman’s last period, which is at least two weeks before an egg could even be fertilized! This by a governor who is a woman. (This always shocks me, still.)

There are laws being pushed through that ban contraception, push abstinence education (which we know does not really work), and those that outrageously criminalize the woman if her fetus dies even from accidents such as falling or forcing a woman to carry a dead fetus; these laws being based on fetal rights and personhood.

These are just a few examples; you can read more here at Politicsusa.com. Reading this will let you see that the rights of the woman, as is normal in a patriarchal society and culture, mean nothing. This is just one political party continuing to try and control women and push through a religious agenda, forgetting that this country has a separation of church and state. Really.

Moving away from reproductive rights, we go to the new voting restrictions. In this year of a presidental race being dominated by a misogynistic bully and baffoon, we no longer have a Voting Rights Act. The majority of the states that have enacted tougher and stricter voting restrictions are Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia. I think you can once again see that these states again coincide with the states that fought for the South.

African-Americans, Hispanics and other minorities tend to vote Democrat, and they voted in droves in 2008. In states where there was a majority of African-Americans voting, seven of them passed laws making it harder for them to vote. In 12 states, where there is a majority of Hispanics voting, there are nine new voting restrictions. These restrictions including showing a photo ID, ending same day voter registration, restricting registration drives, and closing polls.

North Carolina has the harshest new restrictions on voting. This article at Americanprospect.com has more on these voter restrictions and the states they involve. Once more, it is no surprise to find that they are once again those same Southern states.

We move on now to transgender laws. This, too, is all about individual rights as human beings. This is the new battleground for social justice. In Alabama, if you use the bathroom you identify with, you face up to six months in jail. By this time, we all know about the North Carolina bill that forces one to use the bathroom of their “birth” gender and not the one they identify with. Not only this, it also prohibits cities and town from enacting laws to protect the LGBQT community. They are facing huge fallout from this, but show no signs of relenting. There is more at this article on cnn.com.

It would appear that the South, as illustrated in the above examples, are once again focused on taking away the rights and dignity of the individual, just as they did with slavery in the years prior to the Civil War. The Northern states tend to identify more with progressive ideas, such as Massachusetts being the first state to embrace same-sex marriage and affordable health care.

We can expand this to include animal rights, gun rights and climate change. These, too, run on political/state lines, although how anyone can deny climate change totally escapes me.

I am certainly not advocating a war, as I am firmly against violence of any kind; however, it appalls me that our country, over 150 years later, is still fighting the same idealogical war.

Unfortunately, I have no solution. The country is in deadlock around the ideas of racism, misogyny, social justice, animal rights, caring for our environment. I believe we will continue to have this schism until all everyone, everywhere, concludes that each person should be treated with respect and dignity, that they are entitled to fundamental individual rights, no matter their race, religion, gender. Then, and only then, will this country be able to unite,  heal and move forward into the future.

)O(

Friday the 13th Article by Tony Sokol

Hi all…..

This is an article by Tony Sokol entitled “The Secret Life of the American Witch” on the subject of Friday the 13th.   

I am sharing this because I am quoted in it around the 10th paragraph; sorry no photo to help find it! 

I hope you enjoy it!!

Blessings to all!

)O(

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The Silly Sexist Conceit of Fetal Personhood

I just read this wonderful blog by Valerie Tarico. It is brilliant and she puts biology and baby-making right where it belongs – with the woman. She also puts men and their worship of their own (and others’) penis in its’ place. Women belong to themselves whether they have sex with a man , and his penis, or not. If they choose to do so, they do not turn from one kind of person to another kind of person. They just are……a person! I hope you all like this blog as much as I did. Thank you, Valerie, very well said!
SW

ValerieTarico.com

Bhutanese ribboned penisThe notion that life begins at conception is a variation on a very ancient cultural theme: penis worship.

I’m slow sometimes, but after years of writing about abortion rights it finally occurred to me that “life begins at conception” is one more version of a multi-millennial infatuation with the penis as symbol and proof that manliness is next to godliness.

On the surface, conservative Evangelical and Catholic insistence that life begins at conception appears to be aimed at elevating the status of fetus over woman. But just beneath the surface, what it elevates is the status of the penis—and anyone who has one.

What creates the wonder of a new person? Forget about the maturation of germ cells, and the nine-month labor of a woman’s body, and painstaking parental nurture. It’s a sperm, a penile projectile shot forth by the ultimate organ of demi-divinity. Sperm penetrates egg and voila! A…

View original post 1,186 more words

The Mother Wound, Part 2 – Healing

My last blog posting was called “The Mother Wound”, which can be found here.

I have been amazed, honored and humbled by the response that I have received.  Women freely came forward to share their own stories, some in detail, some not so much.  What is extremely apparent is that I am not alone in carrying this Mother Wound.  Many women carry this wound.  The question then becomes “how do we heal this wound”?

As I have mentioned previously, I am very introspective; some might say too introspective.  To those some, I would say, everyone is different in how they approach life.  My introspection comes from a deep need to know, to understand.  I have discussed my Mother Wound with a couple of close friends through the years; my husband, whom I assume would prefer not to hear about it anymore, and various therapists throughout my adult life.  I am particularly fond of my current therapist and, since I have now returned home, will most likely talk her ear off at our next appointment.  

With all of this talking, I do know one thing – it does not necessarily heal the wound.  It can, and does, numb the pain for a certain amount of time, but the pain always comes back with any renewed contact or any reminder of what has gone on before.

Some women choose to cut off all contact with her mother; some continue to have some type of relationship, I think, maybe in hopes that things will somehow, someway, improve.  My experience tells me it does not improve.  Sometimes, it worsens.  

However we choose, personally, to deal with it, it just adds to the pain.  If you cut off all contact, there is always someone, somewhere, who will tell you that not only are you wrong, but they will tell you in detail *why* you are wrong, as if they have lived through your experiences.  Sometimes, even if you do maintain contact, there will be those who think they know your life and your experiences better than you do yourself and this is why you should do x, y or z.  

 If we choose to maintain contact, the pain will just continue as you both get older.  Yes, absolutely, we make our own choices in how we live our lives, what type of person we wish to be and no, we should not let things in our past dictate our present or our future.  That being said, for some, maintaining contact while allowing the distant past to fall away,  just brings new opportunities for the hurt to be compounded.  This has been my personal experience.  The things that have been said, done throughout my adult life right up to the present have just added to the hurt, making it even harder to heal from the past.   Then there is always the guilt that accompanies and exacerbates the pain.  My own mother is now in her early 80’s, with a fairly new dementia diagnosis.  Her memory is failing, so having any type of discussion with her about any issues between the two of us would be an exercise in futility.   I am sure that when she passes through the veil, the guilt will be just another part of the story that I will have to deal with.  Each of us has our own continuing story. Each of us makes the decision that is right for us.  No one else has that right.

So, how do we heal?   Can we heal?  As mentioned, there is therapy, just talking it out.  At best, I think that is just a bandaid, if contact is maintained.   Having my own children was somewhat healing; for various reasons, I have never told my son many of the stories surrounding my relationship with my mother; I have told my daughter.  She reinforces for me that mothers and daughters can have strong, healthy relationships.  For me, as I mentioned in the last article,  there is my spirituality.  The Goddess  fills a void left by my living mother.  Meditation is a good way of  dealing with the pain.  As a yoga and meditation teacher, I have found that deep meditation brings out deep, intense feelings.  This is not for everyone, as it means going even deeper, which tends to lead to more emotional pain; even with my love of meditation, there have been times I have shied away from this particular journey  toward healing.  I am also a certified Reiki healer and I have done some extensive chakra work.  These also are good self-healing techniques.  I would also highly recommend a couple of books by Diane Stein – “All Women Are Healers” and “The Women’s Healing Book”.    

The fact is not lost on me, that as I am writing of different techniques for healing ourselves, it is apparent that I have not fully healed.  I get that.  I may never  heal completely, although that will not stop me from trying.  This is what I wish for all women –  and men, too, that may be carrying this wound  from either parent – do your best to heal, know that no matter what has been said to you or done to you, that you are a worthwhile person, and that you are not defined by the Mother Wound that you carry.  You define you.  Blessings and love on the journey.

The Mother Wound

As I write this, I am sitting  in sunny Florida, 1500 miles from my home in cold Massachusetts.  For those who would say how lucky I am to be here, instead of there, I would respond with the fact that I wish to go home.

**The Mother Wound**

I’m  here to take care of my 83 year old mother, touch base with her doctor and set up services for her with Medicaid, which took me seven months to get her approved for.  She is not in good shape physically and it’s my guess that it won’t be long until she is completely immobile.  She has a new diagnosis of early dementia and I see the deterioration in her mind and memory.  I take my responsibilities very seriously and, so , here I am.  

I have always believed in my heart that the mother/daughter bond should be a strong one, so when it is not, it is painful, an experience that I know I am not alone in feeling.   Through the years I have always had people who know my mother and then meet me say, “your mother is so wonderful!”.  It’s hard not to respond with “yes, but she is not your mother”.   

Do I know how awful this sounds to one’s ears?  Yes, I most certainly do.  However, at best, she was neglectful and had a tendency to abandon me; well, maybe abandon is a harsh word, but that is how I have always seen it.  When something happens to you as a child, you see through the eyes of a child and, sometimes, you always see it through the eyes of the child you once were.  I was given to my grandmother to raise at birth; to me, she was my mother and when she passed through the veil when I was 6-7, I was devastated and here I am so many years later, still wishing she were here.  My mother always told me that my grandmother *took* me; in my heart, I knew better then and  had it confirmed recently that she just really wanted to live her own life unencumbered.  Upon my grandmother’s death, I did,  finally,  go to live with my mother,  who was separated from my father.  Unbeknownst to me at the time, she was gay (never ever an issue), and we went to live with her partner.  If there were time off from school, I was sent away – this aunt and uncle, then to that aunt, and then to the aunt who took me in for every school vacation for the next six years.  Apparently this aunt knew exactly what was happening and was quite aware that if I were not with her, I would be alone. I don’t know how my cousins felt about my being plopped into their lives for 4 months each year; I was young enough to never think to ask; I hope it was not too burdensome for them.  My mother and her partner traveled, partied, lived their lives. If they had a party, I was to be not seen (after saying hello politely) and definitely not heard.  This was my life.  I was a quiet, shy, introverted child.  I was to never misbehave or speak out of turn.   I will not share some of  the things that I could as they are personal and extremely painful.

For decades now, I have been a daughter of the Goddess; I so love that phrase.  I practice a Goddess based spirituality and honor Her in Her aspects as Maiden, Mother and Crone.  While I am now Crone myself and identify with Her in that form, I still revere Her mostly as Mother.  As I tend to be fairly introspective normally, this visit to my mother has made me even more so.  It has been a difficult visit, which in and of itself is a complete understatement.  

My thoughts have run to whether or not I am so drawn to the Goddess as Mother because I have not truly had a mother figure in my life since my grandmother passed.  

My observation has been that many adult women have difficult relationships with their mothers and I wonder why that is.  Is it because of some weird competition for some mothers?  Is there some deeper psychological meaning behind it, or is it that some women just should not have children at all?  I am at a loss to define it.    I find it doubly difficult because I do have this type of relationship with my own daughter.  We are mother-daughter, but we are also friends. 

Through the years, when I have spoken to other women who have damaged relationships with their mothers, some severely, I have always thought of this as “the Mother Wound”.  Children, in general, suffer tremendously when they have less-than-perfect relationships with either parent; however, I find that the mother daughter bond, when broken, leaves behind a much deeper hurt, one that is difficult, if not impossible, to overcome later in life.  As the girl-child gets older and more fully realizes the damage that has been done, it can leave a resentment and bitterness that will never leave her.  If she continues to have some type of relationship with the mother, it often remains  difficult.  If the adult daughter tries to confront and discuss the past, she may find herself rebuffed or downright disbelieved.  I have found this to be true for other women who have shared their stories with me and I know it is true with me; my mother has always been the queen of spin.  

The Mother Wound strikes deep, and it strikes hard.  Fortunate is the woman who does not let it affect her relations with her own children, if she has them.  Lucky is the woman who realizes where the damage comes from and attempts to heal her damaged heart and spirit.  

This, I believe, is why I, personally, turn to the Goddess as Mother in times of grief and  troubled times, why I go to Her for comfort.  Unlike my mother-on-earth, the Goddess is always there for me,  for guidance, help and direction.  All I need do is open my heart and listen to what she has to say to me.   I have never known  Her to let me down.

First Force of all Creation, To You I Bow                                                                                                        Divine Force Everywhere, To You I Bow                                                                                                     Creative Force, Primal Force, To You I Bow                                                                                              Rising Up, Divine Mother, To You I Bow                                                                                                          ~~ Nirinjan Kaur, “Adi Shakti”

Thoughts and comments are welcome.

Goddess Isis Ritual

 

Last month, January, 2016, I was angered and saddened over the use of Isis’ name by  the terrorist group Daesh, I wrote about the Egyptian Goddess Isis, which you can read here.  I was reminded of all that I knew of Her, and again, heartbroken that this group, and the media which report of them, continue to call them by Her name, and not ISIL, the Islamic State, or by the term, Daesh, which they hate.   

As someone who follows a Dianic/Goddess-based spirituality, I decided to put my sadness and outrage to use and write the following Goddess Isis  Ritual.  If you lean in that spiritual direction, or even if you just want to fight against terrorism, I invite you to do this ritual.  I did it for several nights and found a temporary peace in doing so.  

ISIS RITUAL
You will need:

— Representation of Isis (statue, photo)
— One large white candle to reclaim Her name
— One large black candle to diminish the terrorists who have stolen Her name

— One green candle, which is sacred to Isis

— Incense – Choose one: Egyptian Musk, Cinnamon/Frankincense. If unable to find
any of these, use Sage for cleansing.

— Rose Geranium oil (Rose is sacred to Isis); if unable to find, olive oil will be fine.

— Dress in white, with the colors of teal, blue, red, black and gold as borders or accessories

— Bell (optional)

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Before doing this ritual, take a bath in sea salt to cleanse and purify.

Anoint yourself with the oil and dress yourself in your ritual clothing.

Cast your circle per your own tradition.

Ring the bell to open your ritual.

Stand (or sit, depending) before your Isis altar and close your eyes. Breathe in deeply through the nose and exhale. Bring all of your visual focus to Isis. Deeply inhale the Presence of Isis. Exhale. Deeply inhale the Breath of Isis. Exhale. Ask Isis for Her Blessing and open yourself to Her, continuing to breath in Her presence.

Light the Green candle and say:

All Hail Isis
Maiden, Mother, Crone
You, who were there in the Beginning
and from Whom all things come
I call upon you
Bless my sacred space with your presence

All Hail Isis
Goddess of Ten Thousand Names
You who are all things,
The Air we Breathe, The Water that is our Blood,
The sacred Earth beneath our feet, the fire that is our Spirit
I call upon You
Bless my sacred space with Your presence

All Hail Isis
Giver of Life and ReBirth
You whose Magick Made the World
I call upon You
Bless my sacred space with Your presence

Stop here and once again do the beginning breath sequence.

All Hail Isis
I come before you today
to beseech you to reclaim Your Name;
Reclaim and be made stronger once again.
As this candle burns,
As the flame flickers and becomes strong and steady,
so, too, will your presence once again become a beacon
in the world
Isis, Weave Your Magick
So Mote It Be!

(Light the White Candle)

All Hail Isis
Reclaim Your name
Which has been stolen from You
to be used for the evil that men do.
As this candle burns,
As the flame flickers, the evil that has co-opted Your name
will diminish and disappear as the candle disappears
with each lighting.
Isis, Weave Your Magick
So Mote It Be!

(Light the Black Candle)

Sit quietly before the altar, bringing your attention to the candles and to your intention. Do this for as long as it comfortable for you. When done, breathe deeply and open your eyes, and say:

All Hail Isis
Goddess of Ten Thousand Names
You, who were there in the Beginning
and from Whom all things come
I thank and honor You for Your Presence
within my sacred space
Be in Peace, Be in Peace

Close the Circle as per your own tradition.

The Circle is open, but unbroken
in Perfect Love, in Perfect Trust

Continue to burn the candles for nine (9) consecutive nights with the invocations.

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(Photo: My Isis Altar)

@ShaktiWarriorSpirit 2016

Vote As If Your Life Depends On It

Vote As If Your Life Depends On It.

If you are in the U.S., and you are a woman, whether you identify as a feminist or not, you need to vote as if your life depends upon it, because IT DOES.

The majority of my Facebook “friends” are feminists, no surprise there.  Quite a few of them are very political because as Z Budapest has said, “the political is personal”.  The women that I correspond with know that this upcoming election will set the tone for the future of women in this country.  They tend to be left-leaning, Democrats or Independents.

It is not a secret that the GOP will go after Planned Parenthood; not only will they once again outlaw abortion, women’s healthcare will suffer.  This means that women will suffer.  There will be no minimum wage hike.  There will be no closing of the gender pay gap.  Social Security may disappear.  Forget the Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare (a name I do not like).  Science and climate change will be ignored.  All of those gains made by the LBGTQ community will disappear as if they never were. Racial equality?  If the party of old, white, male patriarchy comes into power, civil rights will disappear more than they have been already with the deaths of so many young black males by white cops.  Make no mistake, this country will be forced back into the past. Women’s rights, black rights, human rights, animal rights, all rights will one by one, turned back.

Which brings me to the point of this blog – the Democratic Party.  For the sake of brevity, I am just going to dismiss Martin O’Malley and focus on Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton.  As a feminist myself, I have heard from several sources that I need to “vote with my vagina”, that a woman needs to be elected President.  I like Hillary on some platforms and not so much on others.  Bernie Sanders – I like this guy.  I find myself agreeing with him on many issues.  Where I will end up in my voting is still up for grabs, maybe, but it will be something I keep to myself.  What I do have an issue with is the acrimony that seems to have developed between the supporters of Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.  I have read the personal opinions on Facebook, opinions of intelligent women whom I admire.  I have been dismayed.  I have also read myriad articles on this issue; Bernie Sanders supporters who say if HRC gets the nomination, they will not vote for her.  Hillary Clinton’s supporters who say if Bernie Sanders gets the nomination, they will not vote for him.

I would like to point out that if these various supporters go through with what they threaten, they leave the country in the hands of those who would destroy it, those who would erode the strides we  have made, those who would shove their conservative religions and  beliefs down our throats, not to mention the hatred that they preach.  (Funny that, that the most religious preach the most hate.)

If the supporters of each Democratic candidate cannot find a common ground and support the other if he/she is the one to get the nomination, what hope is there that the country as a whole can find common ground.  It is no secret that the country is divisive enough as it is; do we need this to get worse.

What is basically comes down to is this:

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That is the reality of what is happening.  Trump, unbelievable as it sounds, is way ahead of anyone else in the GOP.  If it happens that his numbers fall, who is behind him?  Cruz, Rubio – they scare me with their thoughts and beliefs.  I would fear for this country even more than I already do.

That is the reality of what is going down right now.  You don’t have to be a feminist to see what this country needs.  You don’t have to be gay, or black, or vegan or  <fill in the blank> to know that this country needs to continue to move forward and that that will only come to pass with one of the Democratic candidates in the White House.

Don’t throw away your vote.  Don’t throw away this country because you don’t like what some other folks are saying about your chosen candidate.  We need to be bigger than a party; we need to be bigger than one person’s idea.  We need to do what is right for everyone who lives in this country.

Think about it.

 

)O(

 

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