Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Gender Only Rites/Groups

Rowan took some issue with my post yesterday on the Z Budapest controversy. This brought up some questions and topics and I think I need to make my position very clear.

On Sexuality: I have no concern whatsoever about anyone's sex life. In fact, I am so liberal that my very liberal friends think I am a freak. I am relatively tame but my attitude about what is acceptable for you is very broad. So you want to boink a pumpkin? Just tell the nice officer that you are stunned to learn that it is after midnight!

On Religion: I have no concern whatsoever about your religious path, your rites, your spirituality or anything else you do that has a religious/spiritual connection.

On Combining the Two: If you want to dance naked with various things up various orifices or dressed in suit of armor denying every sexual thing in your rite, I am fine with that. I simply do not care.

On Healing from Trauma or Anything Else: Do anything you need to.

I am not sure that I can be any more clear than that.

Gender Only Rites

I was trained as a ceremonial magician. That path stresses balance. It also stresses focus. I have often excluded very large portions of the universe until just what I need is in the circle with me. So, if you have something specific that needs to be done with just one gender, sexuality, or the like, I get that.

However, in my opinion, most of the time that is not what is going on. Oh but Robert, how can you possibly know my motivations? I don't. I have, however, seen the attitude on others. So, I am sure you are just fine. I am sure you don't do these things. I am sure your motivation is perfectly clear! I am speaking of other people.

Much of the time this is based on fear.
  • "Men will be pervy if we are circle skyclad." 
  • "I am too ashamed of my body to be seen by others." 
  • "Straight guys just wouldn't understand our queer rites."
  • "I don't feel safe with men around.
Note: Yes, I feel the same about men excluding women but I see far fewer examples of that in neo-paganism. 

These things are about distrust, guilt, fear and insecurity. None of which belong in a magickal rite in any context but one. Well regulated fear inflicted upon the candidate in an initiation has its uses.

If you are going to stand in a circle, be it Wiccan, neo-pagan, ceremonial or what have you, I guarantee you that pandering to fear is not helping. I guarantee you that insecurity is not helping. Excluding things is fine but most of the time, the exclusion is caused by the very emotions you're trying to overcome. This does not help.

Not to belabor the point but Rowan made the following statement in her comment, ""It's a skyclad ritual as well, and women and girls do all ages are admitted, so it only makes sense to be woman only"

I find this to be counter-productive as well. I cannot speak for Rowan. However, I can speak to what I have observed in others I have met. The fear here is that men are pervs and can't handle seeing women naked without doing horrible things. The fear here is of body insecurity. The fear here is that young people will be exposed to the body parts of the opposite sex. Oh my! Oh no, I'm sure there is no fear. There is a perfectly good reason which I am sure will appear in the comments section.

If you don't trust the people you are in circle with...you should not be in circle with them. However, not to trust all of any group of people is prejudicial, short-sighted, ignorant, pandering to fear and a host of other things none of which are positive or helpful to magick.

If we teach our children about sexual parts, sexuality and the rest in an age appropriate way and use such events to generate discussion, there is no harm here. Perhaps we will arm them against the real perverts out there. If we get all blocked up, insecure and fearful, those unspoken emotions will impact your kid much deeper than a view of a penis. That is a horrible result for magickal ritual.

For more on this see: B is for Body

Manifestation Meditation:

Nutty started her work with this today. She is doing it differently than I would and this is okay. I am highly amused by the fact she was interrupted by red and blue lights. Those of you that know promptings regarding those colors may also find it amusing.

She started doing this on her birthday. What a wonderful day to begin. 

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