Posted in Spirituality, tagged Alcohol, Ares, Army, Battle, Beer, Bravery, Brotherhood, Camping, Cars, Courage, Death, Divine, Etiquette, Fatherhood, Girls, God, Gods, Greek Mythology, Heavenly Father, Hellenic Polytheism, Hellenismos, Heroism, Hunting, Integrity, Jupiter, Manhood, Manners, Mars, Masculinity, Men, Military, Myth, Mythology, Neopaganism, Paganism, Penis, Polytheism, Relationships, Religion, Self-reliance, Sex, Spirituality, Sports, Sportsmanship, Survival, Tobacco, War, Warrior, Women, Zeus on June 29, 2011 |
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Zeus is our Heavenly Father, but let’s face it: most of us have shitty relationships with our fathers, and that can carry over into our relationships with our Heavenly Father.
It’s alright though, ’cause we’ve got Ares.
Ares is the older brother who tells you all about girls and the real deal about sex, who turns you on to heavy metal and cars and gives you your first beer and your first cigarette. But he expects you to keep your cool, to be tough, to roll with the punches and not to be a mama’s boy.
Ares is the upperclassman you respect and admire, who lets you be one of the guys, who shows you how to tie a tie and button your cuffs, who makes you feel accepted and doesn’t treat you like a dumb kid. But he expects you to do the right thing, to study hard, to treat girls well, and to show respect and earn the respect of everyone around you.
Ares is the uncle who takes you camping and shows you how to build a fire, to hunt and fish, to shoot a rifle and take care of yourself. But he expects you to do hard things, to not complain or whine, to learn fast, to try hard and to tough it out when things get shitty.
Ares is the team captain who gives his all, who holds the team together and who understands exactly what you’re going through because he is right in the middle of it too. But he expects you to train hard, to play hard, to keep your head in the game, to take care of your teammates, and to win.
Ares is the squad leader who laughs with you, drinks with you, teaches you to be a warrior, and leads you into battle. But he expects you to fight hard, to have integrity, to have courage and a good attitude, to take care of your battle buddies, and to kill every last one of the enemy motherfuckers. He does his damnedest to make sure you make it back home, but he makes damn sure you are never forgotten when you don’t.
Just because you’re born with a penis doesn’t mean you know how to be a man. Don’t worry; Ares will show you.
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Posted in Spirituality, tagged Apollo, Brahman, Brain, Cosmic Unity, Divination, Experience, Freud, God, Gods, Jung, Life, Magic, Meaning, Psyche, Psycholohy, Relationhip, Relationships, Rider-Waite, Spirituality, Spuernatural, Symbol, Tarot, Thought on December 29, 2010 |
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(from a recent post I put up at Burning at the Stake)
I’m definitely an unabashed tarot enthusiast, although I am not necessarily that experienced or that knowledgeable. My understanding of the nature of the tarot is that there’s nothing magic about it–the cards only have significance we give them. Their usefulness and power lies in their powerful symbolism and the resulting ability to cause us to think about things in new ways, to see new relationships between ideas and currents in our life, and and thus make connections that we might not have been able to make without them.
I think the symbolism of the tarot is, if not universal, at least close to universal, at least for people coming out of a western-civilization cultural context. The images in the Rifder-Waite deck are simple and poignant, and deal with archetypes, emotions, and values that embedded in our psyche.
Tarot cards are not primarily used to tell the future, but to evaluate the present (and by understanding the rpesent, to see where all of this is coming from and where it is probably going). When I do a tarot reading, the relationships between the cards in their various positions suggest relationships between ideas or experiences in the subject’s life. The connections themselves are as archetypical as the images on the cards, and as such they are universal enough to have some likelihood of sparking some sort of recognition of “aha” moment. In other words, by reading the cards and attaching their symbolic meanings to specific experiences, people, or ideas in your life, the relationships suggested by the position of the cards suggests relationships between those concrete experiential phenomena that you simply may not have considerd before. As such, there is a good possibility that seeing the “pieces” of your life arranged in a new way will give you insight into what is really going on in your life and in your mind.
Nothing magical or supernatural about it: nothing but psychology at work.
On the other hand, I do not necessarily discount the possibility that there may in fact be more involved than that. If I believe in a god or gods or some kind of cosmic unity, even a basic fundamental connectedness, then there is no reason why the will of God or the connections in the fundamentally connected universe couldn’t play out in what cards you draw and where you place them. Or in the conclusions and interpretations you give them.
I’ve done enough readings that were disturbingly spot-on that I think there is definitely something of value to the tarot. On the other hand, I’ve done a lot of readings that just didn’t “click.” Probably more of the latter than the former. And if/when the tarot is emrely serving as an analytical lens, it stands to reason that there wil be at least as many “misses” as “hits.” But even the misses have value: by considering these symbols and relationships and concluding that what I am seeing in the cards at the moment is not relevant or instructive or providing me with insight, I still reap the benefits of having considered new possibilities. The fact that I ultimately chose to discount the possibility considered does not undermine the value of considering the possibility in the first place.
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