Curing community soul sickness

There’s an outdoor Scandinavian Day festival that takes place around this time of year in a park close to where I was born. We’ve been attending the festival as re-enactors for close to a decade. My husband does double duty as a live steel performer with one group and a fencer with the other, while I perform the role of seidhkona and do rune readings for three bucks.

It’s a small fair, and the only one where I feel comfortable doing psychic readings for several reasons. What I do adds color to the nature of the festival and fits it’s paradigm, so I don’t feel like “being myself” here is pushing anything onto the community that it doesn’t want. It is also held in what I consider to be one of my “odal” or “sacred lands”. The hospital where I was born, the house where my grandparents lived for seventy years and the room where I took my oath of enlistment are all mere blocks from the site.

We generally have good success with the weather, but when it becomes more important to the stupid, the arrogant and the hateful to make the local shamanic practitioner look and feel like a powerless fool, well, there’s going to be rain when rain isn’t really wanted by ANYONE else. It never fails to amaze me how these cointelpro-like cretins claim “victory” and “success” for throwing a monkey wrench into the shamanic work done with the intent to benefit all, but the world is full of paranoid control freaks who would gladly convince the rest of the world that if they can’t do it themselves or exclusively on their terms, it can’t and should never be done. So last year was a day where I had difficulty keeping the rain up and finally ended up losing that battle at around 3:30pm.

This year the morning started out with mist and light rain, but the husband and I packed up anyway and wended our way to Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. There was a lighter attendance than usual, and I despaired of making any money this year (I usually average around $85) but stubbornly set up my double-headed eagle viking chair.

Photo: Miguel Paz

The weather steadily improved to the degree that I ended up coming home with a well-sunburned face and $99. I immediately converted $60 of that to a case of honey that a friend got for me at cost from an upstate apiary. There’s gonna be some mead making this summer at Chez Coles. Several people from last year were only remarkable by their absence, and they were also not missed. “Goodbye Earl”, as the song says…

I have no illusions about all the control freaks and personal enemies being gone from that particular community, but at least they’ve stopped being so stupid that they would cut their noses off to spite their faces.  

Communities which are sickened by the presence of such otherwise useless creeps have two, universal manifestations that never vary no matter the type of community: good people with viable contributions to offer end up being marginalized, and the greater goals of the community are not realized as a result.

It’s a sickness that’s going around everywhere you look. The cure is to move away from petty stupidity, fear, hatred and hypocritical abuse of power. In their attempts to dehumanize their enemies, I have noticed many of the carriers of this particular soul sickness like to associate them with animals. While the temptation to make swine flu jokes about the actions of my enemies is there, I neither want to lower myself to that level nor buy into the associated quickly deflatable hype. This is a very real problem, although it can be as quickly and easily deflated with the proper application of a certain amount of higher-mindedness, compassion, and real justice. Regarding the latter, when it is found lacking on either the spiritworker or the human community side of the equation, nature DOES tend to provide, and there is little second guessing to be had there. Something I’ve learned to count on. Just as with government, spiritual communities get all the shamanic results they deserve. Often as not the shamanic practitioner is the one who is blamed, but in this case if they are to blame for anything it is perhaps not working on behalf of a more truly appreciative community.

There comes a time when “show me the money” becomes much more than a generic capitalist thing to say. Nothing succeeds like success. There are truly activist communities which effect real change, and then there are the “busy boxes” – the places where despite daily, incessant ranting on a subject, nothing ever seems to actually get done about it. Some people might actually get up the gumption to ask why, but I’m not holding my breath.

I believe I shall have made my point by now. Back to the big blue room for me. It’s a beautiful Sunday in May where I live. My husband and I will be going over to my sister’s house today to help put together our communal summer veggie garden.

Photo: Miguel Paz

The weather’s fine.


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    • Alma on May 17, 2009 at 20:16

    instead of living in an echo box and them doing the same.  It is very soul sucking, but without the engagement no learning takes place.

  1. Could have been a rant diary about authoritarian thugs banning the unorthodox from Dailykos, But who wants to hear all that. At least I am in good company.  

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