The Rowdy Goddess

An Ecstatic Vision of the Goddess, dancing in harmony with the Universe.

Archive for the tag “authentic self”

Not for Sissies

Growing old I love this picture.  It’s from a photography book published in the eighties or people of the older generation.  I have this as a poster in my downstairs bathroom and the caption reads, Growing Old is Not for Sissies.”  It’s in the bathroom because the room is decorated with all kinds of mermaids.  She is one.  Old, fit, pensive, and dripping wet.  I love to swim.  She is a mermaid in all her aged mystery, energy, and power.

“Growing old is not for sissies is a quote from the inimitable actress Bette Davis.  If you are not familiar with her work, she played strong women with great flair.  I’ve learned as I grow older, that I have to explain my allusions and references.  When I was younger, I could assume that almost anyone would know who Bette Davis was.  Now, I’m not so sure.  It was a weird and lonely realization that I am talking to generations who do not share my past, my cultural references, or what I used to think was common knowledge.  No matter, I’m not afraid to explain.  One of the other realizations I’ve had is that I’ve become like those oldsters when I was a kid,  telling long, boring stories with no particular point.  I’m not afraid to bore you with them because I’m enjoying my own stories.  Apparently talking to me and being my friend or acquaintance is not for sissies, either.

There are a lot of things in life not for sissies.  We need courage to be our authentic selves and to engage in life.  Wicca is not for sissies.  You probably judge me as wrong because Wicca has an underserved reputation as all love and light, being dubbed “fluffy-bunny.”  To be sure, there are people determined, in the name of Wicca, to turn a blind eye to the dark and negative, people who are afraid to confront their own stuff.  However, there are many more who are bravely engaged in the magic of change.

Many people believe Wicca is unrealistic and fluffy because of the ethical statement, As it harm none, do what you will.  On the surface it may seem to be an unrealistic “law.”  It’s not possible to harm none.  I think of the Rede as a guideline or a standard, but more than that, it is a call to be responsible for our actions, decisions, and indecision.  The gods that call us to their service demand much of us.  We must be courageous to walk this path of “making your own religion” because we have no set of commandments to tell us what to do.  We endure the consequences of our bad decisions and reap the bounty of our good ones.  It’s all part of the flow of universal life energy.

Think about all the things you pursue that you don’t want to or you think it’s too hard.  Either you have to or you want to with a passion, so you put on your big girl/boy clothes and get on with it.  You have moved out of your comfort zone and into the realm of accomplishment, bravery, and wisdom.  You are in a sissie-free zone.

My favorite Bette Davis movie is All About Eve where she says, “Fasten your Seatbelt, it’s going to be a bumpy night!”  She’s a Rowdy Goddess for sure.


Reinventing Ourselves the Rowdy Way

I just spend some time reworking the template on this blog. Sometimes, as Mouse complains about me, I point and click faster than my know-how grows. So I had eliminated something by accident that I wanted to reinstate. Took me awhile but I was able to do it.

Then I decided to give the blog a different look. I like the calm blues and grays of this template. To my mind, I just reinvented myself in my blog. And I think we can and do reinvent ourselves as we go evolve through our lives. If you think of who you were as you graduated high school or college and compare yourself to who you are now, you discover that you have had the opportunity to reinvent yourself, and thus create and recreate your life.

A few years ago, one of my colleagues who was really quite accomplished and had several careers across his lifetime, was ranting about how he has remained consistently the same throughout those transitions. Unlike me, he said, who has reinvented herself several times. How did he know. He took my bumper sticker, “Magic Happens,” as a declaration of my ability to change and shift. It happens that he was right. I had taken the opportunity as I moved to a new job in a new town to create the person I wanted to be. I grew into it over the years as he had witnessed. Sometimes it is a way to grow into the kind of person you want to be. If you can envision it, know that you can become it, you can achieve it. Ghandi said, “be the change you want to be in the world.” And this is a variation on the same thing.Be that which you want to be. It hearkens to a magical principle in spell work called “behaving as if.” You cast the spell and then you behave as if it has already happened until it comes into being. You decide what it is you want to be and then you behave as if. And like spell work, you have to seize every opportunity to do the work that achievement requires whether it is to get more training or education or to stand in your power and be the strong woman you envision. Envisioning is the first step in reinvention. Doing the work is the second. Third is recognizing when it happens and thanking the powers that made it happen, including yourself.
We as goddess people, shamanic practitioners, witches, pagans or just plain 21st century people are shape shifters. Perhaps we only become wolves, leopards, dolphins or earthworms in our dreams, meditations, or journeys but we do shift who we are over our lifetime. We have the power to do it if we believe it and step into that power of Be-ing. The rowdy way is to Be what we wish to be. It’s not always easy and it’s not always smooth, but it is always rowdy.
Of course if you have access to online avatar creators you make the process virtual.
Be the Rowdy Goddess you want to be in the world.

Come as You Aren’t

Part of what I teach is “how to lie at Tarot,” and someday I’m going to put it together as a workshop. Sometimes in teaching and in reading tarot, you need to adopt a persona so you can make your point. I did that several years ago and, voila, Madame Zelda was born.
I was teaching beginning Tarot with a friend and we wanted to do a session on how not to read Tarot. “We should role-play it,” I said. She agreed as long as I would take the lead. I chose to be the reader. I chose the cards for the reading, choosing some of the most challenging cards in the deck. You know the ones: nine of swords, ten of swords and the like. I chose some provocative ones like the Devil and the Lovers, too.

By that time in my tarot life, I had developed my authentic reader self to be compassionate, listening, intuitive and collaborative. I had to figure out a way to move out of that mindset. So I gave myself pep talks about what a “not reading” would feel and look like.
So we sat down to do our role play. I opened my mouth and a deep, faux-mid-European accent emerged. I asked for money upfront, bargaining and quibbling about the amount. I introduced myself as Madame Zelda who proceeded to deliver this reading. Madame Zelda always refers to herself as “Madame Zelda” and is supremely confident and complimentary of her own wisdom, power, and pyschic ability. That day, Madame Zelda actually gave a good reading in terms of the cards and delivering a message. However, she took center stage and the querent was over-run with information delivered with majestic condescension. I’m sure one of her antecedents is Lady Catherine from Pride and Prejudice.
Over the years, I have become very fond of Madame Zelda and so have many of my friends. She is flamboyant, gaudy, arrogant, honest to the point of rudeness, and very, very funny. I do know that when I sit down to read for people for real, Madame Zelda must fall away. She complains about that at all. It’s hard, she says, to get her message out when she has to go through all that caring and listening.
A few years ago, a friend mentioned that she took Mary Greer and Rachel Pollack’s workshop at the Omega Center in Rhinebeck, NY. These two wonderful, knowledgeable teachers had asked people to adopt another persona as a Reader. To think about costume, character, accent and such. What a genius I am. Just kidding.
Madame Zelda has taught me a lot. She helps me shake up my “business as usual” reading style. She is astute when it comes to the business side and the less than pleasant side of life. Everyone I read for knows I like to put a “pretty face” on things while Madame Zelda reminds me that sometimes you need to tell the hard truths.
Speaking of pretty faces, I think Madame Zelda really looks like this.

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