Friday, March 23, 2012
In the last few months I posted a blog that had some typos in it. (Its not the first time that I have done it and I'm sure it won't be the last.) But someone pointed them out. It was done in a way that could have been considered playful or it could have been considered snarky, but whatever the intention, it sent me down a shame spiral.
I didn't realize that was what had happened, until today, actually.
Yes, publicly pointing out my mistake to the world caused me to feel some serious embarrassment, but connecting that to shame didn't flood my awareness until today when I was walking to a wise witch I am lucky enough to call a friend. She asked me one simple question, "What would happen when you were a child and did something wrong?"
My first response was, "Well, nothing". My mom was, and is, a loving and caring parent. She always wanted the best for me and supported me in all of my endeavors. But then I remembered the times where she lost her patience with me. Like if I broke something that was important to her or if I spilled something on the clean carpet. There were times when my mom lost her cool (mom do that). During these times she would occasionally say things out of anger or frustration. These altercations often left me feeling stupid and ashamed.
It's one thing to do something and feel shameful about it on my own, but when someone else points out the mistake, or there are witnesses to that shaming (like my little sister), the pain it can cause goes much deeper than what I could ever inflict on myself.
This was a powerful acknowledgement for me.
So, what does this have to do with Paganism? Well, everything.
Part of my daily practice right now is running the Iron Pentacle through my body. Each of the Iron Pentacle points has a "rusted" side. The rust comes in to play when you are deflated in that energy center. The rust of the Pride point is shame. When not im right relationship with Pride it can manifest in your life as shame.
Dude, this realization hit me like a truck.
The Pride point is the point of the Iron Pentacle that I have the most struggle with. It is the most charged for me. It often feels the most deflated. It is the most difficult point for me to bring into its right size. I am so concerned with the possibility of that point shifting into an inflated state of arrogance that I don't let myself feel what it is to have right Pride in who I am and what I do.
What I have come to discover is that I am not alone in this struggle. Feeling shame is rampant in our culture. Not have right sized Pride is rampant too. And publicly shaming others might have an intention of fun snark and silliness, but it is actually much more insidious than that.
So, I invite you (as I am inviting myself) to look at those moments where you are feeling shame, or shamed. How is this connected to your Pride. Where is the root of this shame and how can you shift from shame to Pride and be right-sized in your power.
Life is totally amazing, no?
Friday, March 9, 2012
Back in the days of the Witch Trials and Inquisition there were specific tests that were done to determine if you were in fact E-Vil - Like the Fru-its of the Dev-il.... These tests turned into superstitions, many of which (no pun intended) continue to have energy today.
Here are some of those markers:
Weight Test - If an accused witch was weighed against a metal bound bible and was found to weight more. She was guilty of Witchcraft.
Dark Marks - The accused would have her naked body scoured over, if any strange birthmarks were found, this was often considered a sign of her being in league with Satan. Especially if there was a mark on the back of the neck.
Black Cats as Pets - Having a black cat was a clear sign of having a demonic familiar and therefore, being in league with the devil.
Lefty - Writing with the left hand was considered a sign of demonic possession.
Red Hair - People with red hair were considered more likely to fall prey to the devil and should not be trusted.
The reason that I am bringing this up, is because I actually fall into all of these categories above. Yes, I weigh more than the bible. Yes, I have several birthmarks and one on the back of my neck. Yes, I have a black cat. Yes, I am left handed. Yes, I have red hair.
I don't think that it is a secret that I have rather enjoyed assigning these "evil" traits to myself. I relish that in some circles of the world people would automatically assign me as a demonic minion. Since discovering Witchcraft I have many times enjoyed the shock factor of telling people that I am a Witch.
I guess I am writing about this because the more that people believe in something the more power it has. I don't believe that I am evil anymore than I believe drowning a woman will prove her innocence, but assigning this energy to myself has helped to shape who I am. And I like the thought of people perceiving me as evil.
I find it silly, but then again, as I have already said the more people believe something the more power it has. So does that make me evil?
These are the things I am pondering this week.