inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #51 of 91: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Sat 10 Jul 04 05:24
    <scribbled by jonl Sat 10 Jul 04 05:25>
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #52 of 91: Thom Fowler (jonl) Sat 10 Jul 04 05:25
    
Thom Fowler writes via email:

Pink is the new black. It's the new "Fuck You" color without being
aggressive or saturnine.

Pink says, "I am not going to be crushed under the weight of militarism
and patriarchy." I am going to be spirited and creative in spite of your
efforts to undermine me, take away my personal power or to instill in
myself your criticism of me while providing me the means of
self-destrcution. Hence, "Fuck You."

Queers, of course, absconded with this color years ago.  Even the Nazis
understood the power of pink as a source of fear and a threat to
militaristic and patriarchal power structures.

Pink says it's okay to not be on edge, to not project fear and isolation.
Pink is a warm, inviting color that encourages spontaneous conviviality
and an open, unconditional joy - qualities that are the exact opposite of
the values and control strategies of a homophobic, misogynistic,
patriarchal war culture.

I see MODERN GODDESS as a "fuck you", I'm going to take my power back and
use it for what's it's supposed to be used for, to create a good life for
myself without having to fuck anyone over in the process.

And it's all just so FUN! It's like you don't even feel like you are
telling the nasty demon of patriarchal oppression to fuck off and die
while you are wearing your tiara and eating pink food.

Whether that was Ms. De Grandis' intention or not, it's how I'M using the
book.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #53 of 91: the Conoisseurship of Stonation (bratwood) Sat 10 Jul 04 09:48
    
Francesca, you didn't leave tea parties out of the book. The Mad
Hatter's Tea Party was listed in the Trickster Goddess quiz. And yes,
it does seem perfectly sensible to me, one of the reasons I feel at
home with the title.

As for pink as it relates specifically to this book, I see it as
completely appropriate. While I have a personal aversion to the color,
I know its contemporary connotations are on target for many of the
reasons listed above. The designer obviously knew what they were doing.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #54 of 91: (rosebud) Sat 10 Jul 04 10:24
    
More men should wear pink.  It is a very flattering color on most and
it can make quite a statement.  I have bought pink shirts for some men
who have been in my life.  With a lot of trust and assurance from me, 
they have worn the pink shirts and felt really good in that color.  
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #55 of 91: Francesca De Grandis (zthirdrd) Sat 10 Jul 04 12:11
    
Ah, of course, I DID mention tea parties in the book. The Mad
Hatter’s. 

I find it interesting that some of us make up various types of mad tea
parties, and Dave’s definition of a tea party is to happily make up
our own madness.

Singing Train Wreck Boogie a few weeks ago at a promotional party had
me delirious with laughter. We sang it to the tune of “Mary had a
little lamb.” Here are two lines of the lyrics:
“I’m bad and that’s good. 
I’m the worst bitch in the neighborhood.”

It was INSANE! Try it to that tune. (The point is to get in touch with
the inner Bitch Goddess.) 

Anyway, since that party, that’s my present favorite game.

Kate! Hi, hiya, hi! 

So glad the signing helped!!

Not sure I am so much touched by the Goddess as just touched.

I make rose tea too. It’s like drinking faerie dust.

Hey, Thom! 

Thom’s one of my favorite entertainment journalists and book
reviewers. He is also, watch for him, an important emerging voice. Be
aware. (I can’t wait for his first book.)

Thanks for the kind words, Thom. Re your analysis of “The Book”: I
tried to apply it to my process in writing the book and it rang so true
for me that it gave me a revelation. The past few years have been hard
for me personally. (I think this has been true of many Americans. A
government’s insanity deteriorates everyone, both economically and
spiritually.) In my particular case, my health has been
catastrophically bad, friends have deserted me as if illness made me a
sinking ship, there has been some slander that I didn’t mind per
se--it’s the price of media exposure--but friends took part in it, and,
well, I could go on and on, but that’s enough of a list of recent
problems. Anyway, I realized reading your post that nowadays I am
sobbing one minute then declaring “Onward” in the next, and moving on
to my work or play. Years ago, when someone threatened my life in order
to stop my work, I finally decided that they’re going to have to kill
me to stop me. This includes stopping me from play!
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #56 of 91: Francesca De Grandis (zthirdrd) Sun 11 Jul 04 10:15
    
 Hiya, it’s my daily visit and no one else has been here yet today. So
let’s make it role reversal time. I’ll ask the questions.

Anyone who so desires to respond, what God or Goddess are you who is
not listed from the book? (Keta listed the book’s at the beginning of
the interview.)

How so are you that deity?

See you tomorrow at which time I’ll address anything posted since this
post.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #57 of 91: the Conoisseurship of Stonation (bratwood) Mon 12 Jul 04 05:14
    
Hi Francesca. Sundays often seem like low traffic days around the
Well. I think it's the time most of us are likely to be away from the
computer, off on other adventures, spending family time, and handling
domestic undertakings.  

As for goddesses not in your book:
The goddess image I have embraced lately came from the Aztec Great
Coyolxauhqui stone found in the Templo Mayor under Mexico City. When I
saw this defeated goddess, hacked to pieces, fallen from the sacred
mountain, I thought, "Hey, I can relate to that." So I produced a
personalized version of her, removed the skulls, and added some cats. I
completed a two-color woodcut. Here's the preliminary line art on my
Well site:
http://www.well.com/user/bratwood

Now that I can embrace the Trickster Goddess, I think it's time to
create a new image. The Fallen Goddess was useful for a time. But now I
must get up, put myself back together, and get on with the show.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #58 of 91: Rip Van Winkle (keta) Mon 12 Jul 04 06:25
    
Wow, <bratwood>, what a wonderful woodcut and story!  Have you ever
read Martin Prechtel's The Toe Bone And The Tooth?  He's a part Native
American, part white guy, who finds himself in Guatemala, and they're
STILL smashing goddesses.  (The subtitle of the book is "An ancient
Mayan story relived in modern times: leaving home to come home.")

Playing Francesca's Cosmic Coincidence game, I open the book and my
eyes fall randomly upon:

"Crooked Bow Boy didn't bring in any more meat with his supposed
weapons than I did money in those days with my art, but both of us
would fall in love with what we hunted when it found us, for the
beautiful sounds we made when our failures had us sincerely singing
instead of chasing or seducing, calling out instead of shooting, had us
finding love only when the road back to the familiar was completely
lost.

"Sometimes it doesn't help to know what it is you're really hunting,
or what love is supposed to look like, because the beauty that the
hunter becomes and creates trhough his willingness to fail in pursuit
of what he or she deeply longs for, but doesn't yet understand, can
cause that uncomprehended thing we hunt th show it's Divine face,
instead of missing that opportunity by chasing the string of lesser
forms our insatiable and impatient greed insists must each be the very
one."

(Potential Internet Misunderstanding Alert: that is a quote from
Martin PRechtel, NOT Francesca De Grandis)
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #59 of 91: Sir Who Sits On His Stump (keta) Mon 12 Jul 04 07:07
    
What deity am I?  Crooked Bow Boy fits pretty well.  

Or, I've been thinking about Cincinnatus recently.  Cincinnatus is a
figure from Roman history who retired to the farm, only to be called
back by the people to help save the republic. My work life has
alternated between periods of high responsibility and backwater
retreat.  (And, I just came home from a vacation to discover my
department has been reorganized.)  What deity was he?  How am I
continuing that thread?

Mary.  There's a line in the bible something like, "And Mary saw all
these things, and held them in her heart."  I know EXACTLY what that's
all about.  

And then there was the time I asked a question at a Bioneer's
Conference.  The panel was Native American, and I'd just had to have a
large dead tree cut down in my back yard.  I wanted to know what they
thought about how I should work with the place next.  One of the
panelests addressed me in the Native American way, with a name that
described and honored how I presented myself:  Sir Who Sits On His
Stump, she called me.  That's the deity I am.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #60 of 91: Francesca De Grandis (zthirdrd) Mon 12 Jul 04 09:18
    
It is crucial to recognize—and develop--Fallen Goddess as an
archetype. Thank you, Bratwood.

I have written several stories in which there is a “Fallen Goddess”,
by that name if memory serves me correctly. In "The Modern Goddess'
Guide to Life" (TMGGTL) there is a section on being disabled, angry,
crazy, whatever--all states people think of as not divine--and how to
find your divine power in them. Soooo important for bratwood, me, all
of us to find, name, claim that power.

Sigh, can’t go see woodcut. It is all I can manage to do the interview
with my diabilities. Keta, can you print it and bring it over next
time you come?

It’s great minds think alike day. 

Keta, you always amaze me. Yeh, that quote is not from me, but it is
like a piece I wrote about a hunter eating EVERYTHING he see, even the
wind. B/c that is what the ultimate hunter does.

For those without a copy of TMGGT, Cosmic Coincidence Game is about
find divine guidance by randomly opening any book. (Keta, be nice.
Explain things you mention to visitors.)

What great posts today. Heck, this demands more role reversal. So:
interviewers always ask me “Francesca, what do you hope readers bring
away from this book?” Okay, anyone who has read it, if you wrote TMGGT,
what would you like readers to gain from reading it?
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #61 of 91: (rosebud) Mon 12 Jul 04 09:20
    
Donna - your woodcut Goddess is pretty terrific.  I really like how
you incorporated the cats.    
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #62 of 91: Rip Van Winkle (keta) Mon 12 Jul 04 17:06
    
>Okay, anyone who has read it, if you wrote TMGGT,
>what would you like readers to gain from reading it?

As I was reading the book, I kept being reminded of one of the first
books I ever bought for myself (outside of Scholastic Book Club!).   I
was in high school, and I remember getting to go to some sort of a
conference at the local community college.  There was a book table, and
on it I found John Powell’s Why Am I Afraid To Tell You Who I Am?   It
had a contemporary cover, “modern” illustrations, and made
sometimes-hokey, sometimes-accurate efforts to be hip as it popularized
pretty sound psychology.   I remember a lot more the experience of
buying the book than I do the details of what was in it.  But what it
did for me was introduce me to the concept of the interior life.  Maybe
not introduce, but make accessable.  And make a different kind of
bridge between inner and outer.  

What I would hope readers get out of TMGGT is something similar for
the spiritual life.  Back to the 12-year-old stealing the book.  It's a
book that tells you things that you already know, but lets you in on
the secret that other people know them too!  

Or tells you things you already know and (finally) validates the way
you know them.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #63 of 91: Rip Van Winkle (keta) Tue 13 Jul 04 06:54
    
Here's Cosmic Coincidence Used For Fortune Telling:

"This activity provides not only a bit of laughter, but perhaps some
guidance.  Like the book's other briefer games, it is a perfect respite
during a coffee break when your work day has been frazzling.  At the
end of the day, when you're also at the end of your wits, exhausted,
this game can also be a quick, easy, pick-me up.

"Sometimes when someone is puzzled and needs guidance, I suggest she
open up a book to a random page - any book, even a cookbook - and let
her eyes fall on whatever sentence they happen to fall on.  I ask her
to read the sentence to see if those words have any meaning for her. 
The exercvhise might make more sense to some folks if they are using
the Bible, or another spiritual text, but the point is that the
universe provides us guidance in the strangest ways and we need to be
open to it.  A bit of foolishness opens us up to that guidance.

"Do this alone or get together with frinends and let everyone take a
turn, first asking a question of the cosmos, then opening the book and
seeing what the answer is.  You may not learn anything, but you will at
least laugh - after all this is a game.  And you may be amazed to find
some real insights.

"By the way, I find it interesting that I am not the only person who
thought of this game.  I've met other people who use this technique for
guidance.  There are universal experiences, and among them is a
trickster element, influencing how divine guidance comes to us."


The next game in the book, Cosmic Coincidental Fortune Telling
Stories, encourages players to get together, each with a book, and
weave a nonsense story with randomly chosen excerpts from the books, a
"story that not only evokes grand silliness but might also reveal the
future."  After explaining a few how-to steps, Francesca says:

"Step 5.  Repeatedly go around the circle, everyone taking turns
adding new randomly chosen lines.  A sense of story may bit by bit
emerge that might strike a chord for you regarding the question you
brought to this game.  However, in the same way that the story is
likely to amount to nonsense, so the guidance that accompanies the tale
might at times be unclear.

"Don't expect a message to be spelled out for you.  While it may
happen, the story might instead hold the *sense* of an idea you need or
the hint of a direction your life needs to go or another non-linear
and not so clear bit of help.  Play around with whatever you get in
order to derive advice from it.

"This is actually the point of the game: instead of receiving guidance
through a logical process, you play by creating a story, then
interpret the guidance from the story in the same manner.  Thus, you
might arrive at valuable insights that you could not achieve through
brow-furrowing, overly serious logic and brain-tiring work.

"Ancient Taoists taught us that a relaxed smile, coupled with an
acceptance of randomness - and here I am not referring to the
randomness of the story, but to the way people participate in the game
- open us up to all the powers of the universe, which are then at our
disposal.  If you instead set about this, or any of the games, grimly,
frantic about whether or not you perform each detail absolutely
correctly, you close down the cosmos's wonders.  Thus, in this
particular game, by relaxing and enjoying yourself, you're likely to
receive some real guidance from the cosmically coincidental story.

"A last note: if no insight comes during the course of the game, it
may arrive later.  As I said earlier, when we open up to the trickster
element, we open up to guidance.  I also said, just above here, that
relaxed fun embodies the Taoist approach to life.  Once you've played
this game, you've opened up for a bit.  Insights can come to you, even
if they don't arrive immediately.  Look for them in yet more random
places.  A thought that pops into your head, words on the back of a
cereal box, a picture on the side of a bus!  Never let it be said that
God(dess) does not have a sense of humor when it comes to offering us
advice."
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #64 of 91: Rip Van Winkle (keta) Tue 13 Jul 04 07:18
    
The other thing that I hope people get from the book is more fun ways
to be together with each other.  The games.  Also the tips on
compatibility.

And what's your answer, Francesca?  What do YOU hope people get from
the book?

(channelling Francesca...(actually turning to page 3)...)

"I believe we are put on this planet for two reasons: to have great
sex and to help other people. (A friend of mine says we can do both at
once, but that is not what I mean.  Though she does have a point.)

"What I do mean is that the Great Mother of Us All is, well, a mom,
The Great Mom!  And like all great moms she wants her kids to be happy.
 In fact, like all good mothers, she really really wants this for us.

"She also wants us all to get along, and help each other, as brothers
and sisters...

"...Fun is a remarkable healer and a profound gateway into our ability
to create ourselves anew.  Laughter helps us forget our fears long
enough to stretch past our limits just a little bit more.  Fun inspires
us, uplifts us, and reminds us that life is worth living, risks are
worth taking, and little pleasures can help us through our daily ups
and downs as well as through our major challenges.  Mind you, I'm
talking simple, unadorned, unpretentious, straight-ahead entertainment.
 Just enjoying a few laughs.

"Let the games begin."
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #65 of 91: Francesca De Grandis (zthirdrd) Tue 13 Jul 04 09:37
    
Jumpin’ Jehozafat, Keta. You typed all those pages up from TMGGTL? Oh.
Lawdie, thou art one devoted interviewer. I bow low in awe.

As to what I hope folks get from TMGGTL, I think the material you
quote from it sums up some of those hopes:  The book starts “"I believe
we are put on this planet for two reasons: to have great sex and to
help other people” b/c that truly representss my vision of life, albeit
a tongue in cheek protrayal of it. The paragraph you quoted that
starts “Fun is a remarkable healer and a profound gateway into our
ability to create ourselves anew” was my attempt to encourage readers
to play, guilt free, and realize that play is important. 

I also wanted readers to have more confidence, more trust in
themselves, and more trust in other people. 

I wanted a lot of others things which I mentioned earlier in this
interview.

Oh, and I wanted, this is not a sale pitch, folks to be able to buy a
really cute, pink, book, with a glittery cover, that made an
inexpensive but meaningful gift. To be more effective, self-help tools
for empowerment need to fit better into folks’ actual, real lives.
Games you can play on your own, quizzes to share with girlfriends,
party themes all do that.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #66 of 91: Uncle Jax (jax) Tue 13 Jul 04 12:00
    
Bibliomancy can be a dangerous game.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #67 of 91: Gail Williams (gail) Tue 13 Jul 04 12:11
    
Gotta take any kind of divination lightly enough so that it is a 
nudge to interpret, not an inflexible order, seems to me.   
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #68 of 91: Cynthia Dyer-Bennet (cdb) Tue 13 Jul 04 13:07
    
(NOTE: Offsite readers can email <inkwell-hosts@well.com> with your comments
or questions)
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #69 of 91: Rip Van Winkle (keta) Tue 13 Jul 04 14:13
    
Actually, that was pretty easy to type.  No bows needed.  I'm a
bureaucrat.

<jax>, one part I skipped over in the Fotune Telling Stories was,
"Remember, this is a game.  Whatever it is you want guidance about
should be something light.  There are other times you can be, and need
to be, more serious about your healing work.  This book is about
learning to heal through fun."

For an excellent site to discuss divination, see the I Ching site,
Clarity: http://www.onlineclarity.co.uk   Discussion forum there is:
http://www.onlineclarity.co.uk/cgi-bin/discus/board-newmessages.cgi

But also, yes,
>Bibliomancy can be a dangerous game.
Any sort of dialogue with the divine, the cosmic, or the plain ol
random can be dangerous.  I like what you say, <gail> about a nudge to
interpret, not an inflexible order.

But a question for you, Francesca: here we are both *being* divine and
*communicating* with the divine.  How does that work?  How does a
pagan (or anyone) both worship a divinity and be a divinity?
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #70 of 91: Rip Van Winkle, Dark Star Bibliomancer (keta) Tue 13 Jul 04 14:35
    
At the risk of provoking more awe, I just have to type in something
else long...

So I asked, "So what's so dangerous about bibliomancy?" and got:

Random Book:  Wendell Berry Collected Poems
Random Line:  'heard McKinley coming down'

The whole poem:

Creation Myth

This is a story handed down.
It is about the old days when Bill 
and Florence and a lot of their kin
lived in the little tin-roofed house
beside the woods, below the hill.
Mornings, they went up the hill
to work, Florence to the house,
the men and boys to the field.
Evenings, they all came home again.
there would be talk then and laughter
and taking of ease around the porch
while the summer night closed.
But one night, McKinley, Bill’s young brother,
stayed away late, and it was dark
when he started down the hill.
Not a star shone, not a window.
What he was going down into was
the dark, only his footsteps sounding
to prove he trod the ground. And Bill
who had got up to cool himself,
thinking and smoking, leaning on
the jamb of the open front door,
heard McKinley coming down,
and heard his steps beat faster
as he came, for McKinley felt the pasture’s
darkness joined to all the rest
of darkness everywhere. It touched 
the depths of woods and sky and grave.
In that huge dark, things that usually 
stayed put might get around, as fish 
in pond or slue get loose in flood.
Oh, things could be coming close 
that never had come close before.
He missed the house and went on down 
and crossed the draw and pounded on 
where the pasture widened on the other side,
lost then for sure. Propped in the door,
Bill heard him circling, a dark star
in the dark, breathing hard, his feet 
blind on the little reality
that was left. Amused, Bill smoked
his smoke, and listened. He knew where 
McKinley was, though McKinley didn’t.
Bill smiled in the darkness to himself,
and let McKinley run until his steps
approached something really to fear:
the quarry pool. Bill quit his pipe
then, opened the screen, and stepped out,
barefoot, on the warm boards. “McKinley!”
he said, and laid the field out clear
under McKinley’s feet, and placed
the map of it in his head.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #71 of 91: Kerridwen (jonl) Tue 13 Jul 04 21:03
    
Email from Kerridwen:

Hello FDG!

I bought your book when I first saw it based upon my working through the
other books some time ago.  I contacted you via email maybe a year ago,
thanking you and I?ll say ?thanks again.?

Your book had me thinking last Friday; it was more than insane at my job
(I?m a graphic artist but I work with our customer service dept more than
doing ?art? anymore).  I said, ?I?m the Goddess She Who Finds and Fixes?
today!  I believe so because I was called upon by All to do my miracles
and magick.  For the most part, I did *and* felt good about it.  Oh sure,
one could say that was my Mother Goddess but really ?She Who Finds and
Fixes? is a very specific part of Big Mama, no?

Regarding pink:  I hated pink my whole life.  I look like death in it
anyway.  I?m the odd girl who looks good in kelly green and lemon yellow.  
Slap me in pink and I it brings out the violet under my eyes.  I?m not
talking about painted flowers on my cheeks, either. To further my hatred
of pink, my mother (and yes, I have mummy difficulties) wears it a lot.  
Hmm, looks like hell and simply by ?not wearing? it I can differentiate
myself from the Evil One?  Yaaesss.  So what did I do when faced with
picking out from so many colors which ?Wax Bush: Vote 2004? tshirt?  Pink
with hot pink silkscreen.  To me, pink is the most obnoxious color I could
wear.  People notice it too! (No judgments on you pink-lovers, more power
to you!)

If I wrote ?TMGGT,? I would want women to walk away recognizing all that
they do.  I would want them to see and feel in their bones how important
they are to the Universe.  It wouldn?t be the same without them! They are
an active part of others? lives and at any moment their immense powers can
make great changes. Most of all, I would hope they learn from this
acknowledged power, they can make positive change in their own lives on
all levels.  No need to wait, y?all already got it (If you still need an
?it,? you?ve already got the first step just waiting for you, pick up your
foot and lean forward.  Even if you fall flat on your face, you?re further
ahead than when you started.)

Blessings and continue your great work-it *helps* people, babe! LR
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #72 of 91: Nurp Nizzum (jonl) Tue 13 Jul 04 21:05
    
Email from Nurp Nizzum:

Thank God, I don't have to live (or work or associate, for that matter)  
with American women.

I will go and smile lovingly, even gratefully at my wife for not needing
to imagine herself a goddess in order to hen-peck me.

So if chicks are now goddesses, what does that make us/me?

Flabby fart kings I suppose!

I think that's the general idea. Unfortunately, with women's indeed
rightful ascension to full politico-economic participation in the shaping
of American life, they were not required to renounce simultaneously the
many nefarious ego-cushioning vanities of their once upon a time
patriarchal servitude.

The result, today, is a noxious market-driven, psycho-ideological brew of
arrogant, irrational petty self-flatteries of endlessly inventive and
proliferating forms, fit consumption for no mortal being and, as it
happens, a potent moral corrosive, which has been discovered and is being
rapidly adopted as a weapon of imperial subjection to sap the resistance
of indigenous cultures and peoples everywhere.

Denatured white people trying to scare up a folk culture. The act has all
the plausibility of raising the dead.

Far from harmless, it leaves the culture as a whole poorly positioned to
resist the more dangerous irrationalisms of increasing fundamentalism in
the three great monotheisms.

Lest you think my words too harsh and exaggerated, consider the following
[boldface mine] blurb, which is quite frank about what's going on:

Luisah Teish 
Yoruba priestess and author

"Once I did an opera for the rain forest, and a little girl points at me
and asks her mother, 'Is that Mother Earth?' For her I was the planet. I
get chills when I think of it!"

Luisa Teish is a voodoo priestess and author of Jambalaya: The Natural
Woman's Book of Personal Charms and Practical Rituals (Harper Collins).  
She teaches traditional shamanic and voodoo rituals to largely Anglo
students at the University of Creation and Spirituality with the intention
of teaching the white world about Africa and to offer traditional wisdom
to people detached from their bodies and spirit.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #73 of 91: Francesca De Grandis (zthirdrd) Wed 14 Jul 04 08:56
    
Thanks, Jax, Gail. I always tell people that divination is meant to
help you find your opinion and inner voice, not stifle them.

How to both be divine and worship divinity? The Gods in ancient myths
did it all the time--they fell in love with each other. 

And I worship all my friends. Worship is not necessarily part of a
hierarchal situation.

And Dave, I love the poem.

Kerridwen, re your working through my two previous books. (Let me give
some background so that what I am about to say to you makes sense to
anyone else who is just dropping by.) TMMGTL was meant to be fun and
easy. By contrast, my two earlier books are challenging programs to
work through. I know the fruits of that labor make the work worth it,
but I wrote TMGGTL as a balance—some fun for both myself and the
readers who had done the programs in the previous books. With that:
Kerridwen, I really admire anyone who worked through those two books. 
It is hard work to explore shamanism so vigorously without a teacher
right by you. Kudos. 

As to what you hope folks would get from TMGGTL, yes! That was my
hope. Some self-help authors condescend to readers: “You poor pitiful,
ignorant, damaged thing you.” To heck with that. We are all God(desse)s
and just need help from each other to honor and use such power.

Kerridwen, thanks for you kind words. 

Moving on: It is a premise of popular culture that if you are in the
public eye you are fair game for cruel attacks. The general populace
somehow doesn’t understand how much it hurts when someone attacks you,
you who are just a normal person with normal feelings and reactions. So
you keep your mouth shut.  But today I’ve had it. I couldn’t decide
which response to give Nurp so am posting all of them. 

Response #1: Thank you, Nurp. I love the story from LT whom I admire
tremendously. I think her story however more supports my approach than
disproves it. I have met her and think she would enjoy the book’s
games. She has a sense of humor. 

Response #2: HI, Nurp. I do love a good debate. Come back when you can
actually give one.

Response #3: MY, aren’t you important.

Response #4: I am so sorry, Nurp, to have presumed to be a mere woman
with an opinion and trying to help people live happier lives. I now
realize I should be more like your wife and wait for you to shine your
sunny smile on me. Please smile on me, please? I never should have
helped people use humor to find the divine in themselves. Now that you
have shed your wisdom on me I understand that God hates humor and would
never have wanted to make poeple laff. I also understand now that
humor and spiritually have no relationship, especially in folk culture.

Was that enough sarcasm? Puh-leeze. I wrote that book in such poor
health that the doctor wanted me to forgo the book contract. I kept
writing in part to keep up my spirit so that I didn’t lie down and
literally die. My hope was that the book might do some little bit of
the same for others. But obviously Nurp thinks it more important to
beat people down so they DO die, at least in spirit.

Don’t you dare tell me about folk culture. I come from a blue color
neighborhood, my mother was a talented psychic, and I have fought my
whole life against upper class, media driven suppression of the true
culture in the blue collar community, which I believe is the life that
we live on the streets, in our bedrooms, in our hearts. And the whole
time I’ve done it, I’ve had to deal with people like you trying to shut
me up. Blue collar women aren’t supposed to speak? Go away. Go do
something with your life instead of attacking those of us who are
fighting the good fight.

Okay, I will now regret for the rest of my life this outburst in a
public interview.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #74 of 91: resluts (bbraasch) Wed 14 Jul 04 10:05
    
no regrets.  great rant.  

I read what Nurp wrote and I was trying to envision a henpecked flabby
fart king reading a pink book.  

It wasn't working so well until I read your reply.  I think you have the 
context right.

I think your book is easier to read if you don't clench it.

Old roles don't die, they just anger the spirit and lead to projectile 
vomiting.

Maybe there should be a blue book.
  
inkwell.vue.218 : Francesca De Grandis, "The Modern Goddess' Guide to Life"
permalink #75 of 91: Rip Van Winkle (keta) Wed 14 Jul 04 10:20
    
Spluttering coffee all over my keyboard!  Choking in my cubicle!  Yes,
a blue book!  I have to go take a break now, or they're going to call
the paramedics!
  

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