Monthly Archives: September 2016

Religious Contemplation

Like I said back in November last year, I’ve not really been very active with my religion other than in basic prayer and meditation.

And, as I have recently posted, until recently I haven’t allowed myself to honestly consider something that currently is unlikely still as a possibility.

All of my “what if….” type of dreaming was completely pragmatic.  It was desperate hoping to win the lottery to get us out of the mountains of debt we constantly lived under.  Of course, there was a matching and negative “what if….” type of thinking — “how can I possibly make it so that ….. and …… don’t completely and unrealistically spend the entire winnings?”

So, where does this intersect with my religion of Wicca?

As a religion, Wicca is relatively new.  I know a lot of people are going to be angry that I am saying that, because they’ve always been taught that Wicca has been “handed down through the generations from since the [so-called] Burning Times began.” Sorry, people, even if some families may have maintained some traditions since before the Dark Ages, they would NOT have been any kind of coherent system.

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Musical Inspirations

I’ll be the first to admit that I enjoy a wide range of music.  Now, I don’t necessarily like all musical genres to the same level.  I do, more often than not, like a particular artist, creative or band rather than a particular genre. My tastes range from Disturbed’s heavy metal to the glam rock of the 80s (particularly but not limited to Queen) to some country music (Home Free, and I grew up listening to John Denver on 8-track tapes, as well as some musical sound tracks such as Camelot, Fiddler on the Roof, My Fair Lady and others) to pop artists like Katy Perry and Taylor Swift to some rap artists like Salt-n-Pepa.

There are quite a few female musical talents who are inspirations not only because of their talent, but because as women they encourage me to strive harder to be a better woman. Queen Latifah is one, P!nk is another, as are  Jennifer Lopez and Lindsey Stirling.

However, musical women aren’t my only inspirations.  In fact, Aurelio Voltaire and Mika are frankly two of the musically creative men in the world that inspire me to not sit back and focus on only one kind of creativity. In fact, these two men (along with a few of my favorite authors) are people I would like to sit down and simply get to know as people (not as  their “celebrity persona” which is what you see during concerts or promotional marketing).  They put a lot of their blood, sweat and tears into their creativity and it shows.

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Getting Tripped Up

When you have Google basic command prompt commands perhaps it is time to admit that your memory issue goes back further than just the last 2 years.

I learned back when it was MS-DOS, and tended to use that instead of Windows 3.1. Then transferred knowledge over to UNIX/LINUX commands. Windows, no matter how much else has changed, still uses a lot of the old MS-DOS commands.

I was good enough with the assorted different DOS types, and the commands, to get a 2-week gig with a major bank conglomerate, working on their DOS batch files that updated the changes in currency fluctuation. And completed the project in record time.

I’ve still used those commands off and on through the years. Often enough that the basic commands like renaming a file, listing a directory, deleting files, etc were always right there for me to use.

I remembered how to change a directory, but I had to actually look up how to list one or rename a file or some of the other basic commands.

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Justice and the American People

First off, let me say that even as a blogging platform, there is no way any one person — no matter how profuse they write (or however  long of a post they write) — can exhaustively cover all of the issues of justice in our country.  So, yes, there will be issues not covered, but they are not being ignored.

Our Founding Fathers, in attempting to frame the nation they were building, had justice as one of the main thrusts of their work.  In the era they lived in, many nations claimed “equitable justice for all,” but the actual reality in those countries ended up far more often having two different sets of law/precedent — one for the rich and one for everyone else.

They made every attempt to enshrine equitable justice as a reality in our government systems.  But, sadly, any human endeavor can be corrupted by humans.

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Sensitivity and Understanding

This is not some excuse for hypersensitivity simply because I have many of the symptoms of a highly sensitive person (also known as an HSP – read the difference between HSP and hypersensitivity over at Psychology Today).  I have known far too many people who hide behind being an HSP as if that means they can have a hissy fit any time someone disagrees with them, and excuse it with the claim to being an HSP.

I am sensitive to my environment.  I smell things often stronger than other people do, as well as experiencing “phantom smells.” I hear both above and below normal human hearing range, but get confused an agitated if there is too much auditory stimuli.  I also experience what can be called word deafness intermittently which becomes worse if there is far too much auditory stimuli.  I hear the words someone is speaking, but my brain translates the actual words they are saying into entirely different words.  I often either have to verify what has been said or read someone’s lips if the communication is important.  I am also what is called a super-taster,” which often means I need to eat blander foods than those around me because I am sensitive to anything hotter than paprika on the Scoville Scale.

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Living Backwards

 

The fictional/mythological Merlin is said to have “lived backwards” (it shows up in Le Morte d’Arthur  as well as in many other fictional treatments of the Arthurian legend). In essence, he has been portrayed as somehow “remembering the future.” My favorite depiction of Merlin is, of course, seen above – the Bermuda-shorts-wearing, slightly barmy version from Disney’s The Sword In The Stone.

But, it could also easily describe me. I’m sure at some point in my childhood that I used my imagination.  I do remember laying on our front porch staring at clouds.  But, at some point — and I can’t really pinpoint it — I stopped dreaming, stopped pretending, stopped actively using my imagination.

Oh, when I became a Wiccan, I regained some of it.  I kind of had to, because pretty much any spell (or even prayer or working) requires visualization.  But, far too often, my visualization was always rather pedestrian.

I suppose that it’s amusing that I say that, because in my 20s, I did things that you would think would require imagination, such as working for the Bristol Renaissance Faire or being part of the S.C.A.

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What Women Want

 

I was rewatching What Women Want today. Yes, I know the photo is from Pretty Woman, but it inspires the post a bit more than the Mel Gibson movie.

In fact, in many ways, the character that Richard Gere plays in many of his movies is far more of an ideal for me than Mel Gibson. Not necessarily as Billy Flynn (from Chicago as that character is a stereotypical “player” in business and everywhere else), but many of his characters such as John Clark (Shall We Dance), Ike Graham (Runaway Bride — once he stops being the cynical asshole, of course), Edward Lewis (Pretty Woman, of course) and Zack Mayo (An Officer and a Gentleman).

Thing is, guys, the real problem here is not that it is somehow “impossible” for you to know what the women in your life want.  The real problem is that you are looking for a “universal remote” for all women.

Now, the other reality is that our heteronormative culture (which objectifies women) teaches most males that women are fairly interchangeable.  That somehow we all want the same exact thing, and we’re all cookie-cutter copies of each other.  And sadly, many women buy into this thought as well and attempt to use peer pressure on other women to conform.

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The New Scarlet Letters

 

For those of you whose high school experience did not include the required reading of The Scarlet Letter by Nathanial Hawthorne, I would encourage you to read at least the plot synopsis linked in this paragraph.

I’m truly sick and tired of the hypocritical, judgemental and pseudo-righteous attitude of a portion of humanity.  And sadly, it is most often perpetrated by the female of the species — just as it was primarily the female Puritans who encouraged the public shame of “fornicators and adulteresses.”

It is the phony, saccharine-sweet, “concerned” commentary given to total strangers as if that person has a right to tell someone else how to live their life.

Now, you all know that I am what the medical establishment calls “morbidly obese.” Additionally, I have also been very clear about the work I am doing to get more healthy, not only psychologically but also physically.

You also know that I have chronic pain in both my lower back (from ruptured discs and arthritis) and arthritis in my ankles and feet.  Walking any distance further than half a football field is painful for me.  So, when I shop at our local Walmart (which is, sadly, the most economical choice local to me), I inevitably use what is called a “mart cart.” (essentially a little scooter).  I have to pick and choose where I spend my energy (or spoons), and even with using the scooter and having a stock person help me load my vehicle, I am often exhausted by the time I’m home (20 minutes away from home).

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Perspectives and Blame

The general default, for most people, when it comes to relationships with other people, is to blame those others if something goes wrong in the relationship.

And, if we can’t somehow blame that specific person, we take it into our heads to blame a generalized grouping of people who have commonalities with the person we really want to blame.

Blame is an effective way for many people to escape taking responsibility for their own lives and their own choices.  We all do it, because it is only our own consciences and ethical principles that will stop that blame in its tracks when it truly is our own choices causing the problem (or at least a portion of the problem).

And it is why so many people who have been conditioned to be co-dependant are so willing to take responsibility for things that are truly beyond their control.  Because they have routinely been blamed for things that are not their responsibility.

As a defense mechanism, it allows us to claim that these issues are out of our personal control, so we shouldn’t have to be responsible for whatever it is.

Especially if we feel our life sucks, it is very, very easy to blame others.  It’s far too easy to forget what blessings we have in our lives.  It’s like so many of us become addicted to feeling miserable.  I have this problem myself, and I was given a book a little over a decade ago that still occasionally helps today.  The book is When Misery Is Company. There may even be some people who did wrong us, who have caused our pain and destroyed our lives.

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Thoughts on Solitude

My sister and I randomly have a discussion about living alone. Technically, neither of us have ever lived completely alone. For her, it has always been family (including her ex-husband). For me, it’s just in general, if I haven’t lived with family members, I’ve always had roommates because, let’s face it, unless you come with an upper-middle-class income you can’t really afford to live on your own anymore. Not unless you are willing to live in a shit-hole (which, sadly, I have even with roommates).

Nights like these, when she’s away for whatever reasons, remind me that as much as I do enjoy my solitude in some ways, I don’t really like being completely alone in a house. Of course, probably by the time you read this, it will be days later and she’ll have returned.

It’s not from fear of being attacked in my home, although if I was living in an urban area that might be an added fear, but simply from the isolation from humanity.

I could see myself heading out to the bars just to not feel so isolated. But, sitting alone in a bar is almost as depressing as sitting at home. It’s the same kind of isolation, it just doesn’t seem like it because there are people around.

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