Latest

Powerful Words from the New Orleans Poet, Sunni Patterson

“Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere”

A great note to end the week with, some spiritual brilliance from this internationally known New Orleans poet.

According to her bio, Sunni’s mission is to aid in the awakening, the revival, and the remembrance of our gifts and voices, enabling us to move to a greater space of self empowerment, creativity and actualization.

I noticed the African words in the middle of the poem are names of the West African, Yoruba Gods. I think it’s interesting that she chose to put them in the middle of the poem deliberately. On my blog you can also read more about Yoruba or the Gods of Yoruba.

SUNNI PATTERSON’S OFFICIAL WEBSITE

TEXT OF POEM:

We have not always found comfort in killers.
We have not always found solace being rocked
in the bosoms of those who silently pray
and openly destroy.
No, not always have we mistaken mimicry for mastery
or pretending for knowing
or enslavement for freedom.
But across my memory —-
across my memory marches millions -—
bold, regal, resilient, confident —-
unshackled feet stumping up spirits
to guide us through this fickle material world.
We like sun and moon folk,
universal souls praying our prayers,
singing our songs.
Eshu, Ogoun, Shango, Yemaja, Oshun, Obatala, Oya,
Damballah, Ayida Wedo, Loa, Nkongo, Olodumare and Yami.
We know all of you by name.
We are people of beginnings, of culture, of strength.
Not always have we given into the empty threats
and scare tactics of the powerless ones.
Not always have we allowed the blood of our sons and daughters
to color the streets while we’re walking asleep,
marching to the beat of that siren song.
They’re still wearing their sheets,
with nooses in reach,
showing their teeth and smiling, it seems.
But I hear in the breeze
in the rustle of the trees
and the dangling of the feet,
they say, please, don’t let them ever forget.
You see, not always have we suffered from amnesia.
Not always have we forgotten how to conjure up spirits,
ancestor wisdom,
fix up a mixture,
spiritual elixir,
ancient traditions.
We, like magicians,
god-like vision, we -—
we are people of sight.
So, no, not always have we fallen
for this okie doke
or inhaled the hazardous smoke of the manipulators
or been satisfied with crumbs for meals
our hands have prepared.
Hughes said life for us ain’t been no crystal stair,
but at least the steps are there
to push us up higher,
teach us how to go beyond the destroyer’s disguises,
look them in the eyes and be able to see.
Because what’s surprising when you know the nature of a beast
and especially when they’ve shown the same face for centuries?
So you tell me,
what’s the difference between two sisters in New Orleans
shot point-blank in the back of the head,
and two women bound in their car in Baghdad?
Or government-sanctioned killings in Kenya,
and a sister held hostage in a house in Virginia?
Or poverty in Haiti, poverty in Jamaica,
rape in Rwanda or rape in Somalia?
A sweatshop in China or one in Guatemala?
Or small pox and blankets, syphilis and Tuskegee,
formaldehyde and FEMA, ethnic cleansing and Katrina?
I recall within a speech Dr. King made us aware,
he said injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere.
So they can spare us their drama, huh?
We got the heart of them field working mamas.
We carry the torch of that ancestor fire.
So with every fiber that flutters in our being,
with every find that comes from our seeking,
with every hearing that comes from our listening,
and every sight that comes from our seeing,
we must be faithful, strategic, victorious and free.

Anilah – Shamanic Healing Music

Anilah sounds to me like a mix of Wardruna, Dead Can Dance, Progressive Rock and Shamanic chanting.

Anilah is the musical project of vocalist and composer Dréa Drury, a musician who hails from the Selkirk Mountains of Western Canada. Her music is influenced by traditional shamanic sound practices, sacred chant, dark tribal and Indian Classical. She has studied the art of using the voice as a healing modality with sound healers and shamans from across North America. Even listening to her music on YouTube makes me feel more relaxed, so it must be working. Her unique sound includes elements of progressive rock and dark ambient chanting.

anilah2

On the Solpurpose review of her album “Warriro”, Dréa states the following:

“The reason I use ritual and ceremony in a creative context is to help dissolve perceptual boundaries, and to enhance my ability to hear in a different way. Usually this involves actively creating a trance state through pranayama, kriyas, or mantra.”

She also says the following about nature:

“When I am walking through the forest and allow myself to open to the larger conversation that is happening, I feel myself filling up with the sheer grace of being, and literally have no other option but to express my gratitude – and this happens in the form of a song or melody. So to rephrase: I breathe nature in, I breathe melody out. My creativity takes this form.”

Recently I had a chance to talk with this medicine woman of sound on Facebook. Here are her responses to my following questions:

MG: How long have you been playing music, when and how did you pick it up?

DD: I’ve been playing music ever since I could sit at a piano – started studying with my grandmother at 5, then moved on to classical training at 13, did my degree in music at college and then did private apprenticeships with my vocal teachers Ali Akbar Khan and Silvia Nakkach afterward. So yea…have been at it for a long time  Always was a musical creature, couldn’t help it..

MG: I’m curious, who are your musical influences?

DD: I have many, but notable ones are: Wardruna, Tool (all of Maynard James Keenan projects), Dead Can Dance – Lisa Gerrard, Bjork, NIN, Chelsea Wolfe. Also listen to tons of avant guard choral/classical music, from composers like Hildegard Von Bingen, Bulgarian Women’s Choir, and countless artists in the Indian Classcial Genre like Raga. 

If you would love to hear more Anilah, check out the videos and links below:

ANILAH VIDEOS

CALLING THE OTHERS

ROLLING THUNDER [WARRIOR]

RELEVANT LINKS

anilah1

ANILAH OFFICIAL SITE

ANILAH FACEBOOK

REVIEW ON SOLPURPOSE

The Shifting Religious Demographic and Politics

pagan4elements

Image Source

 

READ ARTICLE AT THE WILD HUNT

One interesting thing to consider, as the number of religious minorities grow, is the political reality.

According to The Wild Hunt, the number of “religiously unaffiliated” people is just as large as Evangelicals now.

For a long time the more conservative elements of politics have appealed to a Christian base.

Indeed, America is still a majority Christian country, so this seems like an effective strategy.

Yet from what I see, the number of Christians is decreasing, which drives the more conservative elements of the faith to become more fundamentalist. Therefore, conservative politicians can rely on a base of conservative Christians to vote for their policies. However, as the number of religious minorities grow, it will be interesting to see if this strategy shifts in the future.

Also, this post is not to say that all Pagans are liberal. There are some very, very right wing pagan beliefs out there. There are generally Pagans on both sides of the political spectrum. My purpose in linking to this article is to stimulate thought on how religious affiliation effects politics, and how a changing religious dynamic may effect politics in the future.

RELATED ARTICLES

Is Paganism the Fastest Growing Religion in the United States?

10 Genres of Metal in 3 Minutes

I wonder if he’ll do a sequel to this called “1 genre of doom metal in 10 hours.”

Häxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages (Made in 1922)

YouTube Summary: Originally filmed in 1922, this version was updated in the mid 1960’s to include english narration by William S Burroughs. The writer and director Benjamin Christensen discloses a historical view of the witches through the seven parts of this silent movie. First, there is a slide-show alternating inter-titles with drawings and paintings to illustrate the behavior of pagan cultures in the Middle Ages regarding their vision of demons and witches. Then there is a dramatization of the situation of the witches in the Middle Ages, with the witchcraft and the witch-hunts. Finally Benjamin Christensen compares the behavior of hysteria of the modern women of 1921 with the behavior of the witches in the Middle Ages, concluding that they are very similar.

Phillip Car-Gomm’s Home Page

pclogo

 

PHILIP CARR-GOMM HOME PAGE

For those of you interested in Druidry, you may want to check out the home page of Philip Carr-Gomm.

He is the current chief of The Order of Bards Ovates and Druids.

He also has several written works about Druidry, Spirituality and Psychology

God Seed – Alt Liv (Video Symbolism)

Country of origin: Norway

Genre: Black metal

Themes: Mythology, chaos and darkness


The Formation of God Seed:

godseed

God Seed was formed in 2009 after Gaahl and King ov Hell lost the court battle over the rights to the former band name “Gorgoroth.” After losing the battle, Gaahl and King ov Hell chose “God Seed,” since it was the name of one of their songs. King says that the “God Seed” band represents a more spiritual side of their work, ” the will to grow; the will to be the super man, so to speak (Tune of the Day).”

The video above is a song from their first album “I Begin.”


Alt Liv Video Meaning:

odinhang

Image Source

What is the meaning of this song itself, “Alt Liv”? I found many reviews of the song, but not much about its actual meaning.

From what I could find, the Norwegian title itself refers to “everything that lives.” This matches the idea of the band “God Seed” in general to reflect the Will – or the God within, the growth of the seed of power. Everything lives, everything grows.

What does the video itself mean?

There are several symbols here that refer back to Norse Mythology.

Odin is the all father of the Norse Gods. He hung himself upside down from the World Tree, the gigantic ash Yggdrasil. He hung there for nine days and nine nights, pierced by his own spear. He made of himself a sacrifice to himself. Finally he fell from the tree, when he received the flash of insight that revealed the secrets of the runes.

In this video, we see a man hanging from a tree. There are also ravens that fly from the tree (ravens are one of Odin’s attributes). Huginn (“thought”) and Muninn (“memory”) were two of his ravens that would fly all over the world and bring back information. Ravens are often pictured sitting on Odin’s shoulders. In this video, the feather of the raven occurs as a frequent image.

There are three boys in this video who see the man hanging from the tree, but only one has the courage to pick up the spear and pierce the hanging man. Perhaps this reflects the idea that it takes courage and even a bit of audacity to confront the deep knowledge within oneself.

There was also a woman in the video working magic, perhaps this is a reference to the Seiðr magic that was specifically practiced by women. Seiðr was associated with both Odin and the Goddess Freya.

Of course these are just my interpretations. Perhaps God Seed did not have such a specific meaning for their video. Yet the allusion to Norse Myth and the quest for knowledge emerges as a very apparent theme.

All things live. All things grow. Nature grows. Man grows. Yet deep knowledge is necessary for growth.

LINKS: 

God Seed Official Site

God Seed Official Facebook

God Seed YouTube

75654_303316266460379_1389664079_n

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 348 other followers