"Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more. It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."

Friday, March 2, 2007

Sources of Wisdom--Coq à l'âning

Today's Most Serious Project is making the house presentable enough for people to come over and get some of the furniture I advertised... and clearing pathways for said furniture to get to the front door. :-)

My thoughts meander as I do such mindless work, doing 'coq à l'âne' as we French say, going from idea to idea, each loosely related by a common thought. I began to think of which volunteer shift I would be getting this weekend. My volunteer work is as a medical first responder, doing first aid at various events in the area. This thought made me think, with a smile, of something a friend said, that we first aid volunteers are like creepy vultures hovering around for someone to get hurt.

Which made me wonder, why do I do it?

It's not really that I enjoy it, but, rather, that I'm good at it. I've found so few things in life that I seem born to do, so few things that come naturally. There is only one thing that I truly believe I was divinely called to do--Witchcraft.

The Creation Story I adhere to speaks of the birth of Witches. The whole of it is too precious to cite only bits. But I can say that no religious work has ever spoken so deeply to me, for it speaks of Truths I discovered on my own.

There are times I wish that Wicca had a holy book of its own, and then I remember how lucky I am to be able to make my own holy book, my Book of Shadows. Because I firmly believe that all religions are expressions of the same God and Goddess forces, I can choose to find wisdom in their writings, just as I find wisdom in lay sources. My Book of Shadows is an interesting hodgepodge of poetry, psalms, prayers, essays, and quotes, the sources of which may amuse some.

The Bible is one of my favourite sources of wisdom. I have come to the conclusion that the God of the Bible, the 'Lord', Yahweh, Jehovah, whatever his name is perceived to be, is a god I have come to know as the Aten. To my surprise, scholars have reached the same conclusion.

I choose not to honour the Aten because I find him to be a petty, malicious, selfish, and uncaring god unworthy of the love and devotion of so many devout followers. I choose not to honour his words because they are hollow to me. But the words of those who do honour him are no less wise for the god they honour, for divine faith alone has worth, even if the god honoured is not worthy of that faith.

(If any of that makes any sense at all....)

I've read the Bible cover to cover three times, so my impression of the Aten is my own, founded, opinion. Because I have come to know his word so well, I am no longer surprised by the horrors committed in his name and am all the more impressed by those who lead selfless and honourable lives in spite of his example. The Bible is truly a contrary text and I pity those who have never read it, for it is filled with the stuff of life--humour, romance, horror, sex (incest, lots of incest), action, violence (gore, lots of gore), gentleness, cynicism, wisdom.... Too many are intimidated by this text. Remember, it is just a book and holds only as much and power and magic as you are willing to allow it to have.

Brahm's Bookworks offers truly stunning Grimoires and I look forward to purchasing one, then lovingly transcribing into it, in that awful handwriting of mine, all the bits of wisdom I've collected over the years, even in the time before I was Wiccan and Witch, all the little truths I've come to know about this universe. Now that will be a book of power and magic... that I only I will perceive. For all others, it'll just be another book.

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