Women's appreciation of embodiment is not new — simply (deliberately?) forgotten in a more androcentric world. As it slowly re-emerges within society as well as academia, women's (and men's) re-embodiment appears to be more frequently — and often more deeply — creatively realized in a wider variety of fields. Examples include aikido (as already demonstrated), dance (and, in specific, belly dancing), some women's sports, poetry and other self-reflective writing, and painting. Most personally surprising is the increasingly public, shining thread of spirituality woven through the tapestry of beliefs of many of these creative endeavors. For example, in 1995 Circlework leadership trainer Jalaja Bonheim explores the very nature of disembodiment in the West at the time of writing, comparing it to what she considers the less world- and body-negating Eastern spiritual premises (though in actuality those too have their strongly anti-body elements). She metaphorically encapsulates hat she considers these less dogmatically rigid, more cyclical beliefs in the title of her book: The Serpent & the Wave: A Guide to Movement Meditation. The simple exercises, rhythmic music, and dance movements she describes capture the cyclical nature of life-death-rebirth, and are specifically designed for creative spiritual as well as physical healing and well-being. Indeed, eastern dance styles have been life-changing for many women, leading them to a new appreciation of their artistic and physical abilities. Also, unlike modern society, matricentric belly-dancing not only requires women to be visible and present in the moment, but is also extremely welcoming of a wide diversity of body types. Consequently many of the relevant books contain statements from women participants regarding their increased or renewed self-respect and pride, based in their re-found re-embodiment.
~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
The recently deceased dancer, musician, and urban shaman Gabrielle Roth takes this awareness of the spiritual nature of dance to its logical next step when she embraces all forms of meditative rhythmic motion as potentially inherently healing and religious. In her book Sweat Your Prayers: Movement as Spiritual Practice she not only explains how she awoke to this understanding, but also offers an explicitly sacred approach to dance itself. Dividing up meditative dance into five different categories, she recognizes the cyclical, wave-like symmetry of life, seeing dance as embodied human expression of this endless energetic pattern. Interestingly, she conceives of dance as a means of meditative embodied trance states to be something most beneficially shared with a "tribe" of like-minded dancers, rather than specifically as performance. She expresses her vision of such sacred movement as becoming a means of bringing its practitioners to a healing re-unity of body and soul, human and nature.
~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
In 2000 belly dancer and feminist instructor Iris J. Stewart was moved by her dance practice — started for health reasons when she was in her 40s — to write on the sacred history of belly dancing. She explicitly refers to her research as a journey into the sacred feminine and women's spirituality, as she traces the sacred nature of dance through her derivatively titled Sacred Woman, Sacred Dance: Awakening Spirituality Through Movement and Ritual. While she fruitfully reviews the sparse, often androcentric historical written record — such as Old Testament records of women singing and dancing in praise of Yahweh — of necessity she also turns to the few historical, still-existing material goods, as valid historical "texts": paleolithic rock paintings, weaving patterns, pendants and sculptures, vase painting, and bas-relief. In all of these she finds evidence of this unrecognized women's history "hidden in plain sight" — despite its often destructive "editing" by the ravages of time. She closes her book with chapters on modern sacred dance, including both suggestions and examples, so that creative spiritual re-embodiment may be experienced by yet more women.
~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
It was only three years later that Kajira Djoumahna, a Reiki Master and American Tribal Style belly dancer/instructor, collected the various articles which comprise The Tribal Bible. The book is mostly a how-to for the various elements of costuming and persona, rhythmic movement, music and drumming, ethics, and ritual which comprise American Tribal Style belly dance. However, the increasing spiritually physical awareness of many of the women participant-authors shines through in their confident voices and their dance-inspired research for the historical inspirations for their creative modern dance style.
~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
Drummer and historian Layne Redmond performs yet another powerful act of female re-membering and re-valuing: disgusted with the misogyny and sexism then rampant in the traditions of drumming, she researches and writes When the Drummers Were Women: A Spiritual History of Rhythm. Her goal is specifically ecofeminist, though she never uses the word: to break through negative cultural conditioning so that women and men can live in spiritual harmony with the natural world and each other. Through historical illustration and writing, she discovers the ancient origins of the sacred frame drum and the priestesses who played it in ritual for their life-giving goddesses, tracing this practice through time and cultures right up to the point that the drum's sacred nature and usage is appropriated by men for their jealous gods. Redmond also includes a fascinating section on the biological influence and meaning of rhythm and entrainment, noting its curious healing — and often mythic — applications. As she notes, the ritual of sacred drumming is a mythic and spiritual technology which reawakens forgotten human connections that cross national boundaries, and can lead to the healing of the Divine Feminine.
I've had a Tumblr account for over two years and did nothing with it, so I decided to begin reposting my fursuit tutorials and the seemingly endless supply of fursuit photos I have collected. If you're interested in either of those things, check out my Tumblr here!
In terms of LiveJournal stuff, I still read multiple times a day, I love the communities and commenting on posts, but I don't seem to post as much in my own journal (sorry about that)!!
I post Alllll the damn time to my Twitter account though! http://twitter.com/RaisedbyDogs
A few weeks ago I updated my main website, http://www.matrices.net with a bunch of revised fursuit tutorials, I'm super proud of them! Go check it out if you like building fursuits. :3
Tonight was the second session of this WtA game I'm running using the Kickstarter W20 rules. I now feel like journaling the game, so at some later point I'll go back and write up the first session. ( Today's game.Collapse )
Okay, I've been trying to post some pics of Asia here but I've been having a lot of trouble getting it to work. I want to post the picture directly to LJ so that when you see my journal you will automatically see the pic. I don't want you to have to click on a link to find it, I just want it to come up when you view my journal. I used to do this a lot by using photobucket. But it's been so long since I've used it they've changed everything up on me. You guys probably want to see some pics, right? Can someone tell me how to post them without you guys having to click on a link to see them?
We planned a couple breaks while driving back. The first was about an hour north of Columbus at Coon's Candy. This is a candy shop, as the name suggests, with all the miscellaneous little homemade candies and the other oddball candies, like strawberry Charleston Chews. We began stopping there on the way back from Morphicon at my first visit, when we discovered how wonderful it was, and it looks likely to be part of the con-closing ritual now.
This time I noticed they had photos and newspaper clippings from the store's past, and discovered that it was named Coon not because that made for a great icon of a raccoon candy chef but because it's the Coon family business. And the Coon family was apparently quite the social force in the town of Nevada, Ohio, based on the clippings of their names plastered over everything in the town. Also apparently there was a town called Nevada, Ohio.
We rooted around for a long while, considering things like what bunny_hugger's parents might like as a treat for watching over our pet rabbit (without being so much candy as to threaten their attempts to lose weight), and noticing stuff like they carry walking sticks with squirrel figures which stand atop them. bunny_hugger picked up some preserves made nearby, after considering but rejecting banana jam (on the grounds it'd be either great or awful, and the risk of awful too high). I added to a stockpile of what's really too much candy to be hidden around the house.
The cashier wanted to encourage us to come back soon, and we had to disappoint her by explaining how we were from Lansing and there was really only one time a year that we could sensibly stop over here. The cashier seemed to accept this and seemed to be impressed that big-city visitors made a stop here.
Trivia: The parasol used to repair Skylab on the first manned mission was stowed for launch in a spare experiment cannister, T027, designed for an Apollo Telescope Mount contamination measurement experiment. Source: Skylab: A Chronology, Roland W Newkirk, Ivan D Ertel, Courtney G Brooks, NASA SP-4011.
Currently Reading: Apollo: The Lost And Forgotten Missions, David Shayler.
Lights Out (4139 words) by kyburg
Fandom: Iron Man (Movies), The Avengers (2012)
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: Author Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings, No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Pepper Potts/Tony Stark
Characters: Pepper Potts, Tony Stark, Jarvis (Iron Man movies)
Additional Tags: Pepperony, PTSD, Schmoop, Not smutty enough for a warning label but smutty anyway, Missing Scene, IM3, Iron Man Three Spoilers, Iron Man Three, Inadvertent Musical, go the fuck to sleep - Freeform, Avengers mention, Bad Parrot Jokes
The classic function of fan fiction - write the 'missing scene' - in this case, the 'sleeping downstairs NOW' after the Mark 42 attacked Pepper (that jerk).
I just sat there in the theater going 'there's no way.' So here it is - the way I saw that could have gone if the cameras hadn't changed angle. Enjoy!
I keep meaning to fave this one at youtube, but that would mean logging in. ;P
A conversation on Reddit, discussing Yahoo's troubled history with acquisitions, meandered to notes on the current state of excite.com, which hasn't changed much for the last decade. It's a fascinating relic and, in its way, rather comforting; the late-90s design aesthetic still exists somewhere, and it gives me a platform from which to think about what I miss about the 90's-net. I've had a lot of opportunity to think lately on it, since I'm really not happy about what the Internet is now, and I've been trying to figure out what needs it's no longer meeting for me, how to make it do that again, and how to make it catch on enough that I'm not sitting pointlessly alone screaming into my own little corner of the void.
I've been looking into this more, and I keep finding the same thing: everything I loved is still there, largely as I left it. Which is both a good and a bad thing; I can return to this world I missed whenever I like, but it hardly does me a great deal of good- very little of the traditional Internet is being updated, other than directly commercial sites carefully curated and maintained by a company. The sites that have survived do not have the properties I liked about the traditional Internet. I participate anyway, but perhaps I shouldn't.
What we've lost is our attention spans; what is gone is the long-form Internet, persistent documents of mostly text that may or may not have associated conversation spaces. Of course, when you get to stable essays citing each other in various argumentative ways, it starts to sound a lot like modern blogging, which is closer to what I want, but not the same. I think what I miss is a focus on topics and information, where a web site is arranged around a subject and I can immerse myself in the structured expression of someone's organized idea; a blog is chronological, a news feed that is expected to be as much about personal events as it is about ideas, and it is an inherently temporary, transitory, and time-bound thing.
I guess it's the transitory nature of the modern Internet that upsets me, between blogs and traditional web sites. A web site is an aggregation of information that is primarily connected by subject and concept. A blog is primarily connected by time, and reading back into the archives presents a jumbled mix of ideas of decreasing relevance, since the writing is also generally linked to a moment in time. True, all writing loses relevance with age, and all writing is a product of when it is written, but blogs have a social pressure to be immediate and transitory. I've certainly lost the urge to type up any reasonable amount of my various thoughts on identity and spirituality, because they aren't such a transitory thing, so there's no particular time I "should" post them, and then I never get around to it at all. Eventually, I stop even contemplating matters very much, and that does me no good at all; this desperately transitory culture, treating concepts and ideas as though they were as disposable as so many other things, has reduced my tendency towards philosophy, and that is not particularly to my benefit.
The modern Internet is designed to be distracting. Companies make money when you are active and active on their sites, so the modern Internet is deliberately crafted to draw your attention away from other pieces of it in a constant competition for clicks and pageviews. Settling on a site well-engineered for such things doesn't do you any good; it's not just pulling you away from other sites, it wants to pull you into other areas of itself, to draw as much time and attention as it can, as attention is the currency with which "free" web sites are paid for. The modern Internet is crafted to encourage short attention spans. The Facebookization of the Internet has, in my opinion, significantly reduced the quality of discourse.
But, maybe I'm biased? Perhaps these places still exist, and in the volumes they always did, but my attention was in the wrong place. I keep wanting to go back to old-style forums, places I used to know, and browse the "quiet Old Internet" for a while, but my attention keeps getting drawn back- I'm ignoring people I'd like to talk to, and I worry that anything I say on any other channel will get widely ignored. But, then, why shouldn't it? The small audience sizes of 10 years ago were enough for me then; it is merely the centralization of social channels, the Facebookization of the Internet, that has made me irrationally greedy for more. Irrationally and self-destructively greedy, since I am an introvert; I cannot handle the social pressure I have put upon myself, and at the same time I feel guilty and self-conscious if I fail to keep social pressure at sufficient levels. Facebook's product is insecurity, and despite never maintaining a Facebook account (I had one briefly, but I deleted it), I have bought that product, and I need to let it go.
We need to rebuild the quiet Internet of Ideas, and try to give it some reasonable fraction of the grip and audience that the Internet of Now and People has accumulated. The quality of discourse has suffered, but there is no reason it cannot be brought back once we find the right way to do it. What can bring people back to a quiet and concept-rich mode of communication, instead of this desperate and transitory form?
I've migrated to DreamWidth. The original post is at http://kistaro.dreamwidth.org/487228.htm
J J Abrams, the visionary director who brought you such cinematic masterpieces as Jimmy Kimmel Live! and Star Trek: A New
Hope Reboot, returns to his director's seat for Star Trek: Into Plot Holes.
The movie goes something like this:
CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK and BONES are RUNNING ACROSS A FIELD OF WEIRD RED TREES being CHASED BY PRIMITIVE ALIENS
BONES: Why are these aliens chasing us?
CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK: Because I stole their sacred scroll.
BONES: Why did you steal their sacred scroll?
CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK: To distract them from looking up at the shuttle we are sending into the volcano.
BONES: Oh, right.
BONES: Wait, what? If they were in the temple when you stole the scroll, which we know because they all came swarming out of it, they wouldn't have been able to see the shuttle we're sending into the volcano. So you got them all outside to chase us, where they would be more likely to see it.
CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK: ...
CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK: Jump off this cliff now.
( Clicky here to see more! Caution: Spoilers and bad plot choices beneath.Collapse )
Looking back in my records, I posted something similar: Kung Pao chicken with green beans. This is a bit different, and may say something about the evolution of 'how I cook chicken'.
( Cut for image!Collapse )
Today was rather stressful. First I was at the Liturgy at the chapel. It was rather nice, I got to see a Bible signed by St. Justin of Celije. I had a long talk with Branislav Zivkovic - he was feeling rather depressed and anxious over being sacked from St. Basil of Ostrog church. I rushed home, had a 5 minute nap, and then rushed to have a coffee with Nikola Radovanovic. We talked for a couple of hours, really had great time.
So, just in passing, some of the indies I’ve enjoyed lately:
L.M. Ironside has put out her sequel to The Sekhmet Bed; the sequel, The Crook and Flail is the story of Hapshetsut’s journey to the kingship. This was accessible, enjoyable historical fiction set in Egypt; I’m not an Egyptologist, of course, so I don’t know how accurate it is, but then again, how accurate is anything that far back going to be when half the time we’re not even clear on the lives of people we’re contemporaneous with? But I digress. In this novel, we return to meet Hatshepsut as she’s just about to reach her majority; she was raised by a mother who believed she has a boy’s spirits but a girl’s body, and Hatshepsut sometimes believes this and sometimes isn’t sure, and sometimes is attracted to women like a man, and to men like a woman—sometimes dresses like a man and sometimes like a woman. I couldn’t help but think this story would speak to a lot of my readers. If you enjoy historical fiction, Egypt, or gender issues, I encourage you to check this book out, and its prequel, The Sekhmet Bed. At $2.99 each they’re quite affordable!
I heard about Captive Prince from Webfiction Guide’s forum, because apparently this story was a Livejournal serial that just (a few days ago) got picked up by Penguin. It’s advertised as romance/erotica, which isn’t something I usually read, but I was curious about a story that could make the transition. And… I would never have thought of it as romance or erotica. The plot—younger prince sold as slave by older brother during a coup—sounds like a set-up for the typical “blah, blah, learns to become a good sex slave” sort of thing. But it never becomes that story. Instead, it’s about politics, and two extremely different and fascinating personalities interacting: this prince-turned-prisoner and the man he’s given to, also a prince, but of an enemy country, and one so tangled up in deceit and treachery that it has produced an heir to the throne who trusts no one and can think ten or twenty steps in front of his enemies. There was a touch of the Sherlock vibe to it, I thought, though eventually (a book and a half later!) we do get to the romance.
Whatever the case, it was supremely well-written. The characters in particular were brilliant, I thought. There’s a volume 1 and 2 up, and I’d snag them before Penguin jacks the price up from $3.99 each. If you like political intrigue, (eventual) male/male romance, or just like character studies, go pick this one up. (And if you’re on livejournal, the author’s there at freece.)
And that’s what I’ve been reading on my downtime. As always, if you’ve got a recommendation, I’m all ears!
Mirrored from MCAH Online.
Thursday May 23, 2013 Sports Illustrated has a backpage ad for Viagra. Among other warnings: if the desired result lasts for more than four hours, get medical help. I suspect a mere three hours would be excessive for some couples.
Note: In case anyone's wondering, the prescription pills I take come with cautions about use when breastfeeding or pregnant.
***Seen at Dollar Tree: marijuana detection kit. I think those used to cost more than a dollar.
***At Southeast Library, seeing Mother Earth News inspired this idea: Father Sky News, a magazine for people who want to homestead in space.
***Sign glimpsed from bus: "No statutory vape." Context: store selling electronic cigarettes, Uptown Vapor Shoppe. The warning was part of the standard "We don't sell to minors" notice.
***ACA meeting. (Adult Children [of alcoholic and otherwise dysfunctional families] Anonymous.)
Topic for the meeting was characteristics of adult children. Including "Adult children guess at what normal is."
For me, there's a problem with this. "Normal" has at least two meanings: average and healthy. These are not the same thing.
So far I have been to Intergenerational LGBT Dialogue, which included a bunch on shifting vocabularies and how those reflect and/or can help shape self-identification; the delightful Imaginary Book Club (each panelist described/reviewed an imaginary book, and the others then commented on it, including inventing reviews they had seen, fanfic, possible movie adaptations, etc.; and most of the Xenogenesis. I wish I had reread the books pre-con (and might have if I had read the program schedule in time). (Good panel, I left for purely physical reasons.)
I am underslept, possibly jet lagged, and taking some time in the room to talk to Adrian by IM.
Cross-posted from Dreamwidth (http://redbird.dreamwidth.org/1386960.h
Riddle me this: when is inclusion really exclusion?
So, a bit over a month after announcing they would take an internal vote on whether to modify their ban on gay members, the Boy Scouts of America decided to remove “the restriction denying membership to youth on the basis of sexual orientation alone” (emphasis mine). Which a lot of people are praising as a great step forward, while others are predicting the destruction of scouting (and the continued collapse of society and eventual destruction of the entire universe)...
(The rest of this commentary is posted at FontFolly.Net.)
This entry was originally posted at http://typographer.dreamwidth.org/81188
Happy Birthday, careswen and queenoftheskies!
And here we are! It's been a long old haul, 13 weeks in fact, but we've arrived at the very end of Season One. There have been some excellent S1 episodes, many of them in the second half of the season, but this marks the end. Thank you to everyone who's taken the trouble to comment; I've loved reading and responding. So, one last time:
On the back edge of days of rain I visit the Japanese garden at
the Hammond museum some miles to the north. A path of stones meanders
to the right and then the left past a stone vessel and then passes
beyond sight to where I do not remember or yet know...
On another matter I am thinking that perhaps rather than write another
book of the usual sort, even to the extent that my previous ones were,
I might make a patchwork (Stromata in Greek title of a mixed work by
Clement of Alexandria) and publish it print on demand through amazon to
be there if anyone were interested to read it
and to allow for a ramble here and there in a self indulgent way maybe
or maybe like this path of stones, footprints in a garden...
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