Saturday, November 15, 2008

Jobs and Randoms Thoughts

I’ve had a pretty rough week. I was offered and then lost two jobs this week. The first I had to turn down; it turned out to be a high-pressure sales job and there is no way I could do the 100 mile (each way) commute they wanted me to do. It was well-paying, but that was all that could be said for it. The second job was a part-time temporary holiday job for minimum wage at a well-known department store. They offered me the job and then changed their mind when they found out I had some blemishes on my credit. (No? I’ve been out of work for a while and I’ve had credit issues…surprise, surprise.) They don’t hire people with blemishes on their credit. I almost told them what I thought of that, but then thought better of it.

Their dress code made me think even more about telling them off. What kind of company requires you to manicure your nails? Oh, and they allow fashionable open-toed shoes, but they forbid socks and demand you have your feet pedicured if you wear them. Um, yeah, okay…am I the only one who thanks this is completely crazy?

Look, I am not a lazy person. I am perfectly willing to put in a good day’s work. But I need the job first. And I also would like to be treated like a human being and not a robot or a slave. Is that too much to ask? Apparently.

I have been reading a lot of books on pagan theology. As anyone who has read this blog for a while knows, I am a devout pagan. I do not belong to any of the traditional paths; rather, I am an eclectic who goes my own way, in religion as everything else. Part of my problem with most of the ‘traditional’ paths, and with many of my fellow pagans in general (and this is not meant as an insult) is that many of them tend to be…rather fruity. Let me give you a couple of examples. First, one of the most well-known leaders of the pagan community looks completely crazy, and I am not talking about clothing –this person has that wide-eyed half there look of the meth addicts I see at the treatment center. This person’s writings often only help to emphasize that. Not that there is anything inherently wrong with that, but if you want people to take you seriously, this is who your leaders are? Secondly, I was recently reading something by another well-known leader in the pagan community. She was talking about the Goddess Artemis. But during this discussion the author emphasized that Artemis’ bow was used only for marksmanship; that she never actually hunted or hurt anything with it. I laughed so hard my stomach hurt. Artemis, the great huntress. Artemis, the warrior. Um, yeah right. In the real myths she not only used that bow, she was the greatest hunter in the world, called on by hunters everywhere to help them. Furthermore, there is nothing wrong with that. Too many people in the pagan community, among others, tend to change everything to conform to their own political beliefs and agendas. There are also people who are on ego trips, just like in every other movement. (Often they are one and the same.)

So I follow my own path. I mention this for two reasons: one, is that I have been thinking about it a lot lately, and about how to make a viable earth-centered religion that appeals to more than just the fringes. If we are going to grow as a religion –which is an oft-hoped for wish among pagans –and, I firmly believe, if civilization is going to survive, we need to re-develop a reverence for the earth. Secondly, I get tired of people talking about how they like pagan ideas but how all pagans are fruit loops and I just want to point out that is not the case.


Blogger Kati said...

Amen Sista! *wry smile* As a meat-eatting, fur wearing, car-driving pagan who works a regular job and wears jeans & t-shirts more often than not.... Yeah, not all of us look or act like fruit-loops. (FWIW, I'd rather bike or walk to work, but with a 20 to 30 minute DRIVE, with winter temps in the low-low-negatives, walking or biking isn't an option. Now, if public tranpsort worked efficiently around here..... *wishful thinking*)

It's funny when folks claim that vegetarianism, for example, is the only way and that it's the way of the goddess. Last I knew, the native american tribes all hunted, and they were CERTAINLY nature oriented. I'm guessing that our prehistoric Earth-worshiping ancestors ate meat whenever they could get it. Why should I, as a modern day Earth/Goddess worshiper eat meat? (Esp. if we're willing to hunt it down ourselves, and give thanks for what we do take, and use it as thoroughly as possible.) Yep, Artemis was a hunter. In fact, I recall a story in which she saw a MAN spying on her while she was bathing, so she turned him into a deer then ran him down with her hounds. Real peaceloving woman, that!

Thanks for being so vocal about being a pagan, and yet not letting the "fruit-loopy" types do ALL the behavior-modeling.

As for the job hunt, good luck! It's very frustrating to want a job, but want one that allows you to actually use your brain and creativity and feel like a HUMAN instead of a machine or slave. So many folks think that we should just "suck it up and go to work" and who cares if it's not enjoyable. But, when we spend MOST of our adult lives at work, why should we do something we don't love? Best of luck in finding something you love, and a place you love in which to do it.

11/15/2008 3:22 PM  
Blogger Jacques de Beaufort said...

I was thinking today how weird it is that cannibalism is part of Christian ritual (eucharist)...


Pagans do have an image problem. However as the earth is raped and brutalized more and more by the ego driven dominator Judeo-Christian narrative, I think people will SLOWLY come around. There needs to be some substantial trauma before this change occurs. The trauma needs to be of a magnitude that is almost terminal. This is the irony of cultural development, it's not very forward thinking and works with the intelligence of a slime mold.

In the meantime you can do your part by acting as a vessel for the movement, holding it safe for a future time in which it might blossom. Additionally, live an exemplary life and be the Pagan Who is Not a Crazy Fruit.

I'm into Paganism, but also Neo-Shaman movements and Gnostic movements. Also Eastern thought.

11/16/2008 4:37 PM  
Blogger RAS said...

Kati, thanks for writing. I am one of those people who tries to put the Earth first and walk my talk. I have no problem with wearing fur, but I have a problem with raising animals just for their fur and with overhunting and such (if I lived in Canada, I would probably wear fur, but it is overkill in my climate). I have no problem with meat-eating -I do it mysefl -but I have a problem with factory farming. Does that make sense?

As for being vocal, I've always gone my own way, and to Hell with what anyone thanks of it.

Jacques, thank you also for commenting. Part of our image problem has been deliberately created by certain over-zealous Christians and the rest is from our own fruit loops.
The interesting thing is how the pagan movement has grown over the past 30 years. Most of us are quiet, but there are now families with multiple generations of pagans in them. This occurs in multiple paths -Druidry, Wicca, and a few others.
I too think earth-centered traditions are going to grow as this goes on.

11/17/2008 7:55 AM  

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