Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

Let my worship be within the heart that rejoices, for behold, all acts of love and pleasure are my rituals…” —Charge of the Goddess

by Issac Bonewits

THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated.” –The Crisis by Thomas Paine (http://www.ushistory.org/paine/crisis/c-01.htm)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIYlAdxlIzI

Whether you believe it or not, I am a huge Patriot.  However, I’m extremely skeptical of the US government, and I always have been.  When I was in 6th grade I put a sticker on my violin case that says “I love my country, but I fear my government.” (Bet you didn’t know that I played…..)  Pagans, as a whole, whether they themselves are bright enough to realize it, are big Patriots too.  While they may not be the 2nd Amendment and state’s rights advocate that I am, every single one of us values our 1st Amendment right to the freedom of religion and the right to publicly bitch about this right getting trampled on by people who believe that America’s founding fathers were overwhelmingly Christian (they were mainly deists, by the way).  Every Independence Day I gleefully blow up things while embracing the true spirit of our national anthem, making sure to be really drunk so that I can hit the high notes, and pondering how the name “de Kalb” makes me automatically think of penises–specifically the heads of penises.  I occasionally blow up things on that perhaps spurious holiday of Mec Dec Day–just because I can as a good Patriot.  I like to think of it as Independence Day practice.  I also have this insane desire/obsession with joining the DAR–like they’d ever take me!  Even if I can prove the right ancestors, he’d probably end up being some Tory bastard that doesn’t count (and FYI, adopted relatives do not count for the DAR who are a little WASP).

During the last couple months my matron deity has been turning my head toward the archetype/goddess of Liberty (or perhaps it’s just Selena Fox trying to recruit me through mind control for the Lady Liberty League since I constantly jump nude on my First Amendment trampoline).  It’s been a curious kind of meditation.

Liberty as a word means: “the state of being free within society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s way of life, behavior, or political views.”  Sounds a lot like St. Aradia’s view on the world and why in some of the older versions of the Charge of the Goddess Pagans are encouraged to worship skyclad.  Liberty use to be used more in every day speech than it is now.  When was the last time that you heard the word used in a conversation that didn’t center around politics?  Does the Navy still use it to describe shore leave?  I don’t know, but the scuttlebutt says no.  There are some that would argue that a love of liberty leads one to be a libertine, but since when has that been a bad thing?

While I take a break to paint my fingernails and toenails red, white, and blue, since those are America’s magical power colors, let’s put on our Neil Gaiman hats for a moment.  We need to get into that whole “American Gods” mindset to tackle the next little bit of information (go paint your nails while you get into the right frame of mind, or Google “American Gods”).

The Goddess Liberty can be seen in many forms in many different cultures, but our modern view of her and her daughters and permutations, stem from ancient Rome (wow, what a big fucking surprise) as Libertas.

From there, she traveled all over the Roman Empire, specifically to Britain, where she fornicated, fused, and mused with Bride (and her other forms as well), to form Britannia.

I want some golden nipple money!

 

The English colonists brought her with them from over the water, to fornicate, fuse, and muse once more with the new deities in the New World to create Columbia.  If you open up another tab and do a quick Google images search of “Liberty”, “Britannia”, “Columbia”, and even “Justice”, they all look very similar.  From the Roman era, through the Victorian, up until now.  Some of the images are so similar that it’s creepy.

There is a modern artist out there that is trying to change the stock image of Columbia and to resurrect her to social prominence (because here again, how often is the goddess Columbia talked about any more.  You hear “Columbia” and you automatically want to say, “Where I get my drugs.”).

Holly DeFount is the curator, artist, and vision behind “Columbia Rising: Revisioning the American Goddess”.  I have to admit, when I first saw that word “revisioning,” Reclaiming fluffiness immediately came to mind.  But after thoroughly pursuing her site, I don’t think that her project is that kind of revisioning.  Instead, this is more along the lines of fingering a muted goddess back to screaming as oppose to just giving her new make-up for a new era.

You can’t very well stay quiet if you have fire licking at your clit.  DeFount has a master plan for her project.  While she has been working on creating new images for Columbia within her own framework of being an American, she has also put out the call to other artists of all kinds to lift Columbia back up in their own ways.  The first “Columbia Rising” exhibit will be July 11, 2014, but it’s assumed that other exhibits will soon be planned and booked.  http://columbiarising.com/exhibit-2014/  If you fancy yourself talented and creative, then you really should make an effort to participate in this magic.  How often are you given the opportunity to help kindle the fire that will reforge a goddess?  If you like to bitch about the government, now is your opportunity to do something to change the way things are.  What do you think Columbia is going to do once she’s washes the ashes off her face?  Just gaze about in proud admiration?  NO!  She’s going to take names and whoop ass!  Like from the previous post, channel St. Aradia and be a part of the solution instead of just an apathetic waste of resources.

By the way, even the American colonists weren’t happy with the amount of freedom and liberty that they had after they won the American Revolution.  Before the end of George Washington’s term in office, citizens in Pennsylvania staged an arm rebellion over taxes on whiskey.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xvaEJzoaYZk

Be at liberty to check out these freedom mongers:

Mystic Artisanshttps://www.facebook.com/mysticartisans

Passion And Soulhttp://passionandsoul.com/

Tonia Brown:  www.thebackseatwriter.com

 Hyperdreams Interactive Storieshttp://www.hyperdreams.com/