St. Tweety

6 12 2010

Someone sent me this article about the saints venerated by Mexican drug smugglers. This one was a little out of the ordinary:

Traffickers also rely on good-luck charms, such as Scarface posters and pictures of Tweety, the yellow bird from Looney Tunes. Apparently traffickers find comfort in the idea that although Sylvester chases Tweety, he never catches the wily bird, Almonte said.

Next to their pictures of St. Jude and Santa Muerte can also be found pictures of a cartoon character. This is not surprising, as even back in Mexico, people would carry and “pray to” sea beans and heads of garlic for luck in such things as games of chance.

This perhaps is another chapter in the phenomenology of the divine: how does something go from being popular image or inanimate object, to being a saint, a demi-god, or a god itself. What is the difference between luck and Providence; a local manifestation of the preternatural and the metaphysical ens causa sui of philosophy?

Perhaps the “god of philosophy” or the “god of ethics” is just as much an “idol” as Tweety, and serves almost the same purpose.


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13 responses

15 11 2011
cheap offsore hosting

You couldn’t be more factual..

7 12 2010
Turmarion

Actually, a DC Elseworlds from the early 90’s, Holy Terror, had an alternate universe where Bruce Wayne was a priest by day and Batman by night. No reason a saint can’t be a badass caped crusader…. 😉

7 12 2010
Vincent

I want Batman!!!!

6 12 2010
Tom

Fr. Greg,

I was going to suggest Tom and Jerry! But I’m a Tom fan, obviously.

6 12 2010
Henry Karlson

Mu

6 12 2010
random Orthodox chick

This could just be an inside joke taken too seriously. Drug smugglers need a good laugh too, now and again.

6 12 2010
Jacobite

St. Wo Fat.

6 12 2010
FrGregACCA

St. Tweety, huh? It would seem that St. Roadrunner would be at least as appropriate in this context. Or how about St. Jerry of Tom and Jerry fame?

6 12 2010
Jason

“Why don’t you handle jourself one of them first class tickets to de resurrection.”

6 12 2010
Manolo

Tony Montana
ora pro nobis

6 12 2010
+Wulfila

I think I’m going to get myself a plain yellow novina candle and glue a photo of St. Tweety to it – but it will need a prayer! Any suggestions? (I’ll use Turmarion’s in a pinch!)

6 12 2010
Turmarion

On a more serious note, there’s a famous Buddhist story about the monk going on pilgrimage to India, who is asked by an old woman to bring back a relic of the Buddha. The monk makes his trip, totally forgetting the request, until he’s on the last leg of the journey home. Frantic, he notices a dog’s carcass on the roadside, so he pries out a tooth. On his return, he presents it to the old woman who is effusively grateful. She installs the tooth in an elaborate shrine and venerates it daily. After awhile, it takes on a sublime glow, drawing people from all the countryside round about, and many miracles occur.

The usual interpretation is that it is the faith of the woman that does all this–the tooth is just the focus that allows her faith to grow. In some versions, the Buddha or one of the bodhisattvas appears and announces that the tooth is real, since he (the bodhisattva), being aware of the monk’s dilemma, compassionately appeared in the form of a dead dog in order to fulfill the request as well as to test the woman’s faith.

I thought this is an interesting and perhaps relevant story in this context.

6 12 2010
Turmarion

Credidi me felem vidisse! Sancte Pipilator, ora pro nobis!

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