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Showing posts from April, 2008

Revelation

No, I'm not going to talk about the "end times" or Armageddon. Although, after years spent in fundamentalist churches, that is what the word "revelation" conjures up for me most days.

I'd like to talk about the process of revelation as we grow, learn and wake up. Sounds like a wonderful thing, doesn't it? But here's a piece of art by Gerry Bannan that captures the complexities of what it has often felt like to me.



My most extreme experience with revelation came when I was just shy of 30 years old and was in graduate school. At the time, a professor had taken me under his wing and was helping me sort through alot of the confusion in my life that had resulted from the abuses of fundamentalist christianity. In retrospect, what this professor gave to me was complete and total trust. Something I had never experienced in my life. I had been taught to trust god, my parents, the church and any other authoritarian that happened to come along. But this professo…

Making music with what you have

One of the things I've noticed about bloggers is that, in addition to politics, many seem to be attracted to science fiction. That has never been necessarily true for me. But a few years ago I stumbled on a science fiction trilogy by Suzette Haden Elgin. The first two books in the series, Native Tongue and The Judas Rose really grabbed me. Here's the publisher's synopsis for Native Tongue:

Called "fascinating" by the New York Times upon its first publication in 1984, Native Tongue won wide critical praise and cult status, and has often been compared to the futurist fiction of Margaret Atwood. Set in the twenty-second century, the novel tells of a world where women are once again property, denied civil rights and banned from public life. Earth's wealth depends on interplanetary commerce with alien races, and linguists a small, clannish group of families have become the ruling elite by controlling all interplanetary communication. Their women are used to breed p…

Power

Some might define power as being able to get what you want. But as Mick told us so many years ago...



I think many of us are feeling pretty powerless these days to affect change in our country. So I thought it would be interesting to have a little conversation about power and the different ways it works. I'll share a little of my experience and hope you will chime in down below in the comments.

Most of our conceptions about power stem from a basic acceptance of hierarchy. In other words, someone has power if they have power over someone or something. Its the classic model I was taught about relationships in the church.



But if any of you lived in a household that was similarly structured, you might have the same experience I did...which was that Mom had a way of getting what she wanted too. In other words, she had power, but it tended to be covert in comparison to Dad's overt power. This leads me to think that we all have power in some form or another. Its just a question of whethe…

Women of the World, Rise Up!

My title is a quote from Buhdy yesterday in response to this comment from undercovercalico:

Female sexuality and the right to express it freely in any manifestation/identity is still really one of the corner stone threats to authoritarianism.

One of my favorite genres of books is autobiographies of everyday women from around the world. I've read tons of them and I remember at one point I recognized the theme that seemed to always emerge, whether it was burka's in the Middle East, foot-binding in China, genital mutilation in parts of Africa, or chastity belts in Europe. The message was not only that women needed to be controlled, but more specifically, their sexuality needed to be controlled.

Many before me have come to this same conclusion. But the question still remains, why is it that women's freely expressed sexuality is such a threat? What might change in this world if women were allowed individual choice about who to have sex with and when?

I think the answers to those q…