Witches of America

21 01 2019

Alex Mar’s book on modern day witches didn’t inspire me to look further into a pagan revival in our contemporary context. If anything, it sort of reinforced my previous ideas of how we’re all living in one massive consumer survey, it’s just some people’s tastes are more “interesting” than others. Mar takes us on a journey through various contemporary schools of “witchcraft” such as “Faery,” Wicca, Celtic Neo-Paganism, and perhaps her most dramatic encounter, the Ordo Templi Orientis. In these spiritual quests, she stumbles upon various problems facing those seeking the sacred in a de-sacralized society: the issue of paying for initiations, the logistics of holding ceremonies in rented hotel spaces, and the intersection of magic and modern relationships. The “human story” was thus probably the most interesting element of the book, but that may not be saying much. Read the rest of this entry »

The Catholic exodus

20 12 2018

Rod Dreher linked to a story about why young people are leaving the Catholic Church, which had no surprises in it. A disproportionate number of respondents to a survey said they left due to the teachings about sexual ethics, again, no surprises there. I suppose it has been a question of my formation, but I have never understood why people today separate licentiousness in sexuality from permissiveness in other aspects of life. That is perhaps the wisdom of the great sages of yesteryear, who are now universally reviled for strictly forbidding genital-to-genital contact except in defined circumstances. Supposedly one can have intercourse with a man, woman, dog, table leg, imaginary cartoon character, etc. etc. and that will NOT be detrimental to any other aspect of life, be that the respect for other people’s property, their bodily person, etc. etc. As if one of the reasons people covet property or enact violence have nothing to do with sex… I am not saying that if people kept it in their pants, they would suddenly be saints in all other aspects of life. But why would people be saints in everything if only they were allowed to be licentious in affairs of the flesh? For me, it doesn’t follow. Read the rest of this entry »

Why the American left will lose

21 07 2010

In a recent trip to the Smoky Mountains, I found the following phrases either on t-shirts or bumper stickers:

People Eating Tasty Animals (PETA)

Gun control means using both hands

If you want to know if you can trust your government, ask an Indian.

And that was just a selection of numerous other phrases one can find going around the American South. A look into a local Books-A-Million bookstore in Mississippi found about a half a dozen books on why Obama is really a socialist, as well as Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom. We also found good deals on children’s books, but that is neither here nor there.
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