Decoding Slut

I really liked the logic and thought behind this piece.


man-woman-at-barRecently I heard a joke which seemed to both capture our societal attitude towards female sexuality, and struck me in a very heathen sense as being deeply wrong. The joke compared men to keys and women to locks and concluded that a man whose key opens many locks is awesome, while I woman whose lock opened to many keys was worthless.

Everyone seemed to find it funny, but what strikes me as strange funny, rather than amusing funny, is this joke would make total sense to ISIS, whose belief that women are property can thus view a woman’s sexuality as being her husband’s property, and infringing on those property rights would make that property less valuable.  As deeply offensive as that attitude is, it is at least consistent with their misogynist ethic.

Whether you stone sluts or merely make jokes about them, the acceptance that women who have the same…

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Notes On a Lost Flute: A Fieldguide to the Wabanaki Review

I’ve decided it is time to stop keeping a gem to myself. My grandmother gave me a copy of Notes on a Lost Flute: A Field Guide to the Wabanaki several years ago for Christmas. It has since become one of my favorites. I re-read occasionally simply because it puts me in a good mood.

Notes on a Lost Flute is a book exploring the pre-contact (with the Europeans) culture of northern New England (Maine, in particular). Kerry Hardy, the author, obviously writes from a deep interest in and love for pre-contact culture. He is an ecologist by training, and he considers the relationship between the land and the people. He presents the Wabanaki as an integral part of the land, burning to maintain fertility and living well off the richness of the land. It is an amazing insight into what it must have been like to be part of the land.

One of my favorite chapters about the Wabanaki “food year”. It is amazing to see how much food the Native Americans had access to without recourse to intensive agriculture.  To realize that many food plants and trees still grow wild gives me hope that someday we will be able to develop a similarly close relationship with the land. It also inspires me to learn about how to find free wild food in my own area.

Kerry Hardy makes the Wabanaki come alive as insightful naturalists with a keen sense of humor. Hardy himself has a sense of humor, and excerpts passages from missionaries and other people who were in contact with Wabanaki culture that are rather amusing at times.

Overall, Notes on a Lost Flute is one of my favorite books of all time. The pictures and artwork are amazing. Kerry hardy is an engaging writer and while the book is informative, it is not dry. Notes on a Lost Flute was not written to turn the reader into an expert on Wabanaki culture, but to give the reader a sense of what life was like. Kerry Hardy does this very well. Notes on a Lost Flute is definitely worth the read.

Recent Developments and My Take on “PC”

So I have taken a step back from this blog and decided to trash some posts. I feel that I have been getting too political of late. While there is a time and place for politics, and I love a good donnybrook over them, I started this blog to share some of my philosophy and to connect with other people. I may start a separate blog in the future for my political stuff, but I wasn’t happy having it here. I’ll still have some political stuff here, but I want to present facts and question values rather than make arguments.

It felt as though I was arguing for my religion to apply to other people’s lives, something that I am generally against. I also don’t want to make it seem to non-heathens that heathenism implies one political ideology. I have a political ideology and it is informed by my religious beliefs. However, many people who hold the same beliefs form opposite opinions.

That said, I do have a political comment to make. There has been tons of reaction on heathen blogs to certain statements made by certain public figures. I’m not going into specifics, because I suspect the statement in question was deliberately sensationalist and intended to garner attention. Plenty of people have commented eloquently on why such comments are inappropriate. My two cents would be redundant.

However, I will throw in my two cents on the reactions I’ve been seeing to these reactions. I’ve seen a lot of people accused of being “politically correct”, or “social justice warriors” for stating that they disagree with the above mentioned statements. It appears that it is now politically incorrect to be politically correct. My brain is starting to hurt.

The whole point of opposing excessive “political correctness” was originally to keep free and honest dialogue open. Now the specter of being called “PC” is being used to keep people from stating their opinions. This is BS. We don’t need any thought police telling us what we are allowed to object to. I’d far rather be “PC” than let someone else define my religion in a way I find offensive and then scare me into silence with the threat of being called names. If I’m “PC”, I’m “PC”. Better I be honestly “PC” than a closet racist who taints the reputation of everyone else by refusing to come out and acknowledge racist ideology and be challenged on it.

As far as I’m concerned, a part of heathenism is about being what you are and being honest. I’ve been concerned with the way our country wastes money on foreign wars and corporate subsidies while ignoring internal problems like lead-contaminated water for years. You know what? I AM a “social justice warrior”. And I’m proud of it. “SJW”s got us the weekend, workingmen’s compensation, an end of child labor in this country back in the 1890s-1930s. “SJW”s during the 1960s and 1970s opened up American minds and culture enough that heathens can practice a non-Christian religion without too much overt interference from the government and mainstream society. SJWs have given heathens (and everyone else) a lot (like weekends to hold blots on). We’ve made a contribution to society and have earned the right to a voice.

I’ve studied the issues. I’ve read hundreds of books on politics, history, and economics. I’ve read both Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations and Karl Marx’s Das Kapital. I’ve also taken college courses in economics. I have a very informed opinion which is based on ten years of research. I think that I’ve earned the right to air my opinions if I choose.

Now, as I’ve said, I’m backing things off politically here on this blog. But I felt as a final hurrah, that I would point out that making it politically incorrect to be politically correct is making my brain hurt. I am who I am and I refuse to apologize for being concerned with making our country more tolerant (especially when I’m a member of a minority religion directly benefiting from that tolerance). Now I want to get back into my thoughts on creativity and how my research into heathenism is lining up with my research into other subjects like psychology.