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January 20th, 2004


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11:29 am - Sex and power
Sometimes, I'm very happy with a strictly monogamous relationship. Today is one of those days.

I was reading a post on nonfluffypagans (I don't usually read a lot of them) about abuse of power, and explicitly about the abuse of sexual power-over.

Since the practice of my religion doesn't involve sex, or any sex act, and I have never really considered sex to be a "sacred act" (if anyone tries to tell me that I "just haven't done it with the right person", that person needs to check their ego at the door), I don't think I'm in any danger of using sex in a religious context to hold power over a person.

Of course, I do believe that sex can hold a place in magic (particularly in Chaos Magic), but magic is far from a primary practice of mine, and since a small debacle a few years ago (when I was younger, stupider, and not in any position to be teaching anything to anyone, anyway), I haven't bothered to teach anyone anything that wasn't religious first.

This used to be a large problem in the Columbus Pagan community, though, and there are still aftershocks from it. The post referenced above made me re-consider this issue, and wonder if there are groups in Columbus who still do this. I'm sure there are.

Fortunately, they probably don't hold the same amount of power as they did before. Some of the groups were *very* large, and rumors of people sleeping their way to the top are common about them. I don't hear the same things anymore. I'm hoping that's a good sign.
Current Mood: awake
Current Music: "In the Shelter", -JB

(4 comments Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:mlleelizabeth
Date:January 20th, 2004 05:04 pm (UTC)
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*blink* The person who wrote that article not only lives in the same general area as me, she also shares my birthday.

Unfortunately, there have always been people who used religion as a cover for poor behavior and power games, sexual or otherwise. And it happens in every religion.

Thank you for pointing me to this post. I need to reread the essay more carefully before I comment, but it sounds like she could use some support and I'd be delighted to give her some.
[User Picture]
From:tosk
Date:January 20th, 2004 05:06 pm (UTC)

Illegal, Immoral and other All Encompassing Words

(Link)
(I posted this in response and reposted here with additional comments based on chronarchy's post)

Oh my gods, you mean someone did something illegal as a pagan?! Call out the Inquisition!! Can you imagine, in a wonderful legal system, codified by Puritanical Christian Political Leaders, some pagan did something illegal?!

And on top of that it was Immoral... you know, morals, those things that are expressly written in the Bib.. err I mean in the Old Test.. err, damnit, where did the Goddess write down her 10 commandments?

Any organized religon eventually has the individuals at the top, getting favors of some sort from the poeple at the bottom. Probably not sex, but something. Its the way organized religons work. They may have great ideals, but the people running them are human, and humans as a species suck.. terribly.

Personally, I don't think that any individual should prostitute themselves (what else would you call it?) for any reason, esp some parlor tricks and pathetic excuses for rituals. However, its not my business. Its not my reality. Its not my sex.

If someone wants to run and tell on the bad man for doing things with his privates that the US GOV doesn't think they should, go right ahead. As for me, I'll stick with minding my own reality, thank you.

Do As Thou Wilt is the Whole of the Law... just be sure your ready to deal with the concequences.

Ratatosk, Squirrel of Discord
Chatterer of The Words of Eris
Muncher of the ChaoAcorn
POEE of the Great Googlie Mooglie Cabal

---------------------

Chronarchy,

Sex is sex. Its not bad, dirty, special, magical or anything else... It is only what you will it to be. If someone wants to sleep their way to the top of Pagans R' Us, why stop them? Who can judge them, and more importantly by whose standards shall they be judged?

Do you believe that Pre-Christian religons had the same views of sex as the modern US citizen? If not, is it wrong to follow older moral codes? Is it wrong to do something religous, if it is not in harmony with local Law Enforcement?

"Like what you like, enjoy what you enjoy and Don't give each other crap."


- Tosk
From:rubydolphin
Date:January 20th, 2004 05:10 pm (UTC)
(Link)
I was strictly solitary (with the exception of some online chatting) up until I discovered CedarLight, so that kind of thing is news to me. It doesn't surprise me, however.

Any adult who is having sex with a minor (as mentioned in the article), whether that minor is 6 or 16, is a pedophile. The bad public image such a scandal would create is not an excuse to allow the behavior to continue. Think Catholic Church, boys and girls.

While the exchange of bodily fluids is NOT something I want as part of my rituals, I do believe in sexuality and sensuality. It is important that these aspects are not completely left out because they seem cliche, might give paganism an even more negative image, or because we are uncomfortable with the topic. They can be acknowledged without making a ritual family un-friendly IMO. I once attended a Beltaine ritual with *very* little acknowledgement of the physical fertility aspects of that holiday (it focused on the community coming together). It was a nightmarish disaster of a very fluff-bunny ritual. The aftermath sucked, too.

Magic is another story entirely. Like you, I avoid practicing magic - and with good reason. Just being with the person I love is magic enough for me, and treating it like the gift it is honors the gods with no need for anything else.
[User Picture]
From:bean_drui
Date:January 20th, 2004 06:36 pm (UTC)
(Link)
I was once involved in a group of cult like people in Portland...lead by two grumpy old men. They had practically brainwashed everyone in the group to believe that if you want to "be enlightened" or be a "true celtic shaman" or whatever the hogwash they were teaching was, that you had to be able to have sex with anyone. regardless of gender, age, etc. because i wouldn't sleep with them there was this huge power struggle. eventually i realized i was being pulled into this bizarre sexual cult thing and got myself out of it, with a few scrapes and bruises, but your rant reminded me of that.
i've heard there is a druid grove near grants pass oregon that takes a similar approach to sex, that you should do it with anyone and everyone...it just makes me a little sick now.

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