one of the most persistent and attractive glamours is that of the magician as an ‘outsider’ figure. many people who are attracted to magic want to think of themselves as outsiders—individuals who stand beyond the boundaries of everyday society, separated from everyone else by dint of their ‘knowledge of the mysteries.’ unfortunately, thinking of oneself as an ‘outsider’ can become an excuse for not getting one’s act together. the ‘outsider stance’ can often be equated with no direction, low quality of life, no social skills, unrealistic self-expectations and a huge chip on one’s shoulder. addiction to those virulent memes, Being Right and Getting Even is also common amongst wannabe Outsiders. the other main problem with being an Outsider is that one needs something to be outside of. again this pulls the individual back into dualistic opposition-oriented thinking habits. having to have an enemy against which to define yourself, be it society, an imaginary black lodge that is psychically attacking you; mehums; the masses; robotniks; proles or whatever term used, hides, I think, a nagging insecurity. if you see yourself in opposition to that other, then it’s all too easy to think of yourself as being superior to them, and the more you have to be superior, the less able you are to admit to having personal faults and weaknesses, or even that other people may be as complex and interesting as you are. this kind of arrogance is all too common, and not therefore, as elite as its exponents fondly imagine themselves to be.”
— Phil Hine (via courier5)
I’ve never been female. But I have been black my whole life. I can perhaps offer some insight from that perspective. There are many similar social issues related to access to equal opportunity that we find in the black community, as well as the community of women in a white male dominate society…
When I look at — throughout my life — I’ve known that I wanted to do astrophysics since I was 9 years old…I got to see how the world around me reacted to my expressions of these ambitions. All I can say is, the fact that I wanted to be a scientist, an astrophysicist was hands down the path of most resistance through the forces of society.
Anytime I expressed this interest, teachers would say, ‘Oh, don’t you wanna be an athlete?’ I want to become someone that was outside of the paradigm of expectations of the people in power. Fortunately, my depth of interest of the universe was so deep and so fuel enriched that everyone of these curve balls that I was thrown, and fences built in front of me, and hills that I had to climb, I just reach for more fuel, and I just kept going.
Now, here I am, one of the most visible scientists in the land, and I wanna look behind me and say, ‘Where are the others who might have been this,’ and they’re not there! …I happened to survive and others did not simply because of forces of society that prevented it at every turn. At every turn.
…My life experience tells me that when you don’t find blacks, when you don’t find women in the sciences, I know that these forces are real, and I had to survive them in order to get where I am today.
So before we start talking about genetic differences, you gotta come up with a system where there’s equal opportunity, then we can have that conversation.
Antique Bone Dice Photo by Matthew Venus
Astragalomancy, which is a form of Cleromancy, is divination by use of dice. It is an ancient form of divination and is still used by many when seeking answer to the unknown.
One of the most common forms of Dice Divination…
Devotional Polytheist Meme - What wealth have the Powers brought into your life?
The Holy Powers have brought wealth into my life for as long as I can remember. In very real ways, They have given me my life. Nearly every blessing I have has source in the spirits and Gods I’ve encountered through the years.
The Gods gave me my family back and brought me to my partner. The Powers reached out and aided me in each step I took to approach Them. Even when I had wrong views, ways of approaching the Powers that limited my how I could know them, They led me to better conceptual frameworks that could more readily embrace Their boundless presence.
The greatest boon, and probably the spring from which all the others flow, has been the gift of integrity. As I became more enamored with Chaos magic, I took the doctrine of no-self, proposed by Carroll, as far as I could. In pursuit of this, I engageed a series of depersonalization exercises liberally supplemented with psychedelic drugs. These led to the successful creation of fragmented personalities, complete with amnesia between them. I approached personal tastes and traits as fundamentally arbitrary and worked to undermine them as much as possible. During the course of this practice, I also lost most of my social connections. My anxiety disorder, which had previously been in remission, returned and I had bouts of panic that someone was attempting mind control experiments on me, which was, after a manner, true.
These works of dispersion continued, until the Powers interceded. The dice determined I’d be working with the unfortunate and racist Urban Voodoo. Eshu responded right away to the invocation, and asked for offerings. The next day, I met a Santero from the local community who would later do a lot to help point me in the right direction. My petitions were granted, very quickly, but often in the worst manner possible. After weeks of my not picking up the hints, Eshu made it clear that I could not continue along this path, and pointed to the amount of harm I was bringing upon myself.
Eshu opened the way for me, set the direction for me to find my Gods, and to a true knowledge of Self. This rescue from false ideals laid the foundation for any goods that have come to me since. This alone would be enough to praise the Gods, and hail Eshu in thanks, for the rest of my life.
When I say people want to see more diversity in stories, no, I really don’t mean different stories about straight white dudes. I really, really don’t mean that at all. This isn’t about types of stories being told. This is specifically about people. I’m not letting you make this about something else. You are not hijacking this message to make sure we’re still talking about straight white dudes.
The saga continues:
This made me actually sputter with frustration. Saliva exited my mouth. Why do you think your opinion SHOULD matter on this subject? Why should your opinion be given the same weight over people who are actually living these experiences? Especially when my original point was about how minorities rarely get to tell their own stories. I’ve been really patient with him but he’s taken up way too much of my time and he’s still missing the point like he’s trying to actively avoid it.
Hey, fellow straight, cis, white dudes, learn when to shut the fuck up.
Isn’t having our stories told in every form of media almost all of the time enough? Nobody needs to hear our side. They’ve fucking heard it.
Contemporary Art Week!
Tamara Natalie Madden
Madden lists among influences Gustav Klimt and images of Egyptian royalty. You can view many, many more images of her work here at her official website.