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Thoughts on Conjuring Spirits
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Thoughts on Cultural and Spiritual Appropriation
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Goddesses on Contraception
Article ID: 15087
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 1,524
Times Read: 3,719
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Author: Magaly Guerrero
Posted: June 24th. 2012
Times Viewed: 3,719
In a recent interview by a Pagan online magazine, I wrote that “I was taught to celebrate the seasons, visualize my desires, assume responsibilities for my actions, respect all living things, and to see death as a part of the circle of life way before anyone said that what I did had a name.”
A friend read the article and asked me, how I knew that I was a Witch then, when no god had recognized me as such. I looked at her for a long time, before answering her inquiry with a question of my own: “What do the gods have to do with me being a Witch?”
We discussed the issue at length. Me saying that the gods, at least the way I know them in my heart, would probably like the idea of people using their brains. What self-respectable god would want a flock of puppets, right?
Then she said something that surprised me. Shocking words that I would rarely expect to hear from another Witch’s lips. She said, “Gods always have a saying in the lives of mortals. Look at what is going on with female contraception; religion is usually the best way of seeing the difference between right and wrong.” I must’ve been giving her a very strange look, because she blinked a few times and added, “Well, you don’t think the gods or maybe the goddesses would have something to say about birth control?”
I didn’t answer that day. I was afraid of what my emotions would do to the shape of my words. A few days later, I decided to respond to her question with a story. This is what I wrote:
Hebe took a third sip of kava-kava tea and waited. When no goddess energy touched her skin, she opened one eye and looked around her studio apartment. Her secondhand furniture wasn’t shimmering with celestial glow like the ritual had promised. “What do you think, Sophie?” Hebe’s yellow lab lowered her lashes, covered her face with a paw and let out a sigh.
Hebe glanced in the direction of her stove. “I should probably drink the rest of the kava-kava infusion.”
Sophie sprung to her fours, barked three times and ran to hide in the bathroom.
Hebe sighed. “Even my dog knows that’s dumb.” Kava-kava was a great inducer of visions, but consuming too much of the plant was murder to the kidneys. “Hm, ” Hebe muttered, eyeing the yellow crocus Mrs. Candela, her downstairs neighbor, had given her for her birthday. She had almost convinced herself that burning the pretty yellow blooms would be just fine, when she thought of something that would put her in a trance faster than any herb.
She dashed towards the round oak kitchen table that doubled as a desk and grabbed her laptop. Reclaiming her old spot in the middle of the living room floor, Hebe clicked play on one of Dr. Bolas’ old lectures—the monotonous tone of her philosophy of religion professor sent Hebe into a dreamlike state. It left her entranced enough to ignore the physical world, while leaving her mind free to ask the question.
The caress of a summer breeze opened Hebe’s eyes. The sight made her gasp. She was sitting crossed legged in the middle of an ash grove, her ethereal body encircled by a group of glaring goddesses and three equally pissed off dogs.
“Well?” said a tall goddess clad in a white, gray and black dress that seemed to hold the secrets of light and shadow. “I don’t have all night, witch child.” One of the three dogs, pacing around the goddess, growled at Hebe.
“Calm your energies and your hounds, Hekate, ” said a goddess wearing a kimono with large flowers growing out of a mount of skulls. Leaning on a staff-like spear, the goddess turned towards Hebe. “The woman child is frightened, ” she said.
“Frightened or not, Izanami-no-Mikoto, Hekate is right, ” the brown-skinned goddess, whose aura seemed to illuminate the entire grove, walked closer to Hebe. “My people are waiting for dawn. Night won’t go away if I don’t chase her. Ask, woman child, ask your question.”
Hebe’s tongue was an inert boulder. She wanted to say, I need to know how you feel about the current situation… but her mouth only uttered “Um… um… um…”
“Sun, ” said a goddess wearing a golden Egyptian headpiece. “We know what she needs. You’ve mothered dozens of worlds; you understand our children are scared of us.”
“Scared, ” said a many-armed goddess clad in flowing silks. “Scared of us?” Her beautiful accent made the question sound like a song. “Can you believe Isis’ words, Proserpine?” The goddess with the singsong voice cocked her head towards a dark figured dressed in night.
“It’s mortality, Parvati, ” the pale-skinned goddess in the dark dress bit into a pomegranate. “It makes humans bizarre.”
“Maybe she needs a little color, ” said a very young looking goddess right before creating a rainbow.
Hebe’s body jerked. She had not expected the rainbow to be so warm.
“But Ix Chel, she looks not interested in your hue. Maybe, a little mating will encourage the woman child’s tongue, ” the naked goddess smiled. Her dark skin seemed to chuckle with her.
“Talk to Oya, child, ” the plump, red-lipped goddess actually touched Hebe. Her skin felt warm and it smelled of wilderness. “Pay no mind to Ishtar’s hungry flesh. She cannot help it. It’s the fertility and the lust. She’s who she is.”
Ishtar grinned at Hebe as if agreeing with Oya. Hebe wanted to ask the question, but the energy was so extreme. Her lips didn’t remember how to form words, “I…” she said.
“Mhm, ” said a goddess holding a torch that had begun to throw sparks. “You, yes, go on; once this blazes up, ” she chin-pointed at her torch. “I have to leave.”
“Gnowee?” a goddess, whose skin seemed to be painted on her, stepped between the torch-holding goddess and Hebe. “You need to take the sun further away from the child. And from me, too. My canvas still holds a scorch mark from the last time this, ” she aimed an index finger at the torch, “blazed up.”
“What is it that you are trying to say, Chiu T’ien Hsuan-nu?” the goddess’ torch was beginning to burn. “You teach one puny human how to fight, and all of a sudden you are all-knowing?”
The three hounds howled.
A blast of fire engulfed Hebe, and its brightness blinded her.
Hebe was still screaming, her skin sweaty and smelling of ash and smoke, when she reappeared in her living room. Sophie howled by her side. “Weird dream; weird, weird, weird. Oh Sophie, what a crazy…” Hebe’s voiced trailed off. Her eyes followed the dog’s gaze. “Oh, my, god, ” Hebe said.
“Goddess actually, witch child.” Hekate sat; no, she didn’t sit; the Goddess of the Crossroads hovered over Hebe’s kitchen table. “Glad to hear your tongue works. Ask, witch child, ” said the goddess.
Hebe’s mouth was sandpaper and stones. “I… um… who do you think should make decisions concerning women and contraception?”
“And here I was thinking woman had grown unwise, ” Hekate grinned.
The goddess’ ageless smile forced Hebe’s eyes closed. When she opened them, Hekate was gone. The young witch sighed. She looked at Sophie whose head now rested on her lap. “Weird dream, indeed, Sophie, ” Hebe said. Then her eyes went to her laptop’s screen. The machine had rebooted itself. How long was I out for? She wondered as she searched for Dr. Bolas’ lecture. She blinked at the folder. The audio file was gone. She clicked on the singled document left in the folder. The untitled Word file spread over Hebe’s screen. It contained five words that seemed to have been handwritten rather than typed. They read: Only every woman, witch child.
I’m an Aries, but not even I would be so arrogant as to pretend that I know what goes on in the minds of celestial beings. However, I would think that any entity with consciousness so evolve that I can’t even begin to understand it, might agree that decisions that alter a person’s body and soul should be made by that person and by anyone the individual in question chooses to let in.
“Inspiring Pagans: Magaly Guerrero.” Pagan Living, Summer Issue 2012
Copyright: Magaly Guerrero – Pagan Culture – 2012
Location: New York, New York
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