Warning: This is really a romance, but it includes some serious (consensual) roughhousing in the gym. Consider your tastes and headspace before clicking through.
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Israeli scholar Shai Ferraro talks about Canannite (i.e., Pagan) reconstructionism in present-day Israel. This is an excerpt from his presentation at the recent conference of the European Society for the Study of Western Esotericism in Riga, Latvia. (Wish I could have been there.)
He makes a reference to the “Canaanites” who were not reconstructionists. That would be these “Canaanites.” Note that some members were fighters in the Irgun — and there is apparently a story there from the days of the Israeli struggle for independence. Basically, this movement wanted to form an Israeli/Hebrew identity that was separate from both Jewish religion and Zionism — a re-enchantment of the land.
1. One secret link per comment.
2. 600x600 px or smaller.
3. Link directly to the image.
- Doing it RIGHT: http://i.imgur.com/KuBug.png
- Doing it WRONG: http://imgur.com/KuBug
Optional: If you would like your secret's fandom to be noted in the main post along with the secret itself, please put it in the comment along with your secret. If your secret makes the fandom obvious, there's no need to do this. If your fandom is obscure, you should probably tell me what it is.
Optional #2: If you would like WARNINGS (such as spoilers or common triggers -- list of some common ones here) to be noted in the main post before the secret itself, please put it in the comment along with your secret.
Optional #3: If you would like a transcript to be posted along with your secret, put it along with the link in the comment!
Thanks for your letter. My name is David and I wrote the bicycle story. (...)
You can certainly link to this issue. I keep all issues on Philadelphia-secret-admirer.tumblr.com. This most recent will be on the top.
I hope that your day is lovely.
Last night I gave the second of my Arcane Audio Webinars, this one was on Advanced Financial Sorcery. During the Q and A I described a period of my life when, because of my lack of degree, my moving further from the cities, and the general decline of the economy, my day jobs were spiraling into positions that paid less and less for doing work that I felt no excitement for. I described how to re-shuffle the cards you are dealt and the need to keep your head up so you can find a new way of looking at the situation. One of the students, facing a similar situation now, asked “Which god do you go to for that?”
This is a question that I get asked a LOT. “What God do I pray to for that?”
The Gods and Spirits have become like apps on your smartphone.
Want to feel clearer? There’s a God for that….
The funny thing is that very often these folks have gone to dozens of dieties and spirits already. Bune, Jupiter, Tzadkiel, Odin, Dzambhala, Habondia…. They keep asking different spirits to support the same thing and when they don’t get it they move on. Because if they just hit up the right one they are sure that it is all going to work out.
There are three pieces of advice that I want to share about this:
1. The problem is most often not who you are asking for help; it’s what you are asking for. If your business model sucks ass the gods are not going to suddenly make everyone love your product. If you have a crappy resume, the gods are not going to land you a job at Ernst and Young. If you look like an unmade bed and smell like you bathe in Axe body spray and Yak Sweat the Spirits are not going to get you laid consistently. This is why I am always stressing magic being linked to new and more skillful actions.
2. Your own mind is part of the problem. Stop always looking outside for your solution and look in the mirror instead. Stop asking the spirits to lift you up – lift yourself up. Stop asking the gods for clarity, start working on your own mind. There is nothing that you know that is not filtered through your own mind. This is why I am always stressing meditation and mind training. I will be doing even moreso in the future as I prepare for my next big book.
3. Finding the right spirit is not as important as deepening the relationships you have already. I am not saying that you should limit yourself, or not know many spirits, but people get really caught up the these tables of correspondence. If you have a deep relationship with Aphrodite, maybe you would do better asking her to drive customers your way instead of turning to Helios or Zeus.
These three pieces of advice really represent the three things that Strategic Sorcery attempts to combine:
1. Mind Training
2. Skillful Living
I tend to view these as overlapping circles, with Strategic Sorcery being squarely in the center of the three. But in a way there is also an order of importance here, and I list them above in that order.
If you have a clear compassionate and strong mind, you WILL be happy no matter what because your joy is based on something beyond outer circumstance. The other two are nothing without a clear mind.
If you have a clear, and strong mind, that is firmly anchored in its primordial nature you can shape your life through skillful living to reflect this. Your actions will be like the rays of the sun carrying the warmth of your Gnosis into the world. As far as I am concerned while Sorcery works without this, it does not amount to much.
Sorcery, that has a clear mind and skillful life to work within is like catalyst added to a chemical reaction. It can turn the ordinary into the extraordinary, its effect rippling upwards and outwards into the Mind and Life.
One of the questions when faced with bloc nominating in the Hugo Awards is this: when is something bloc voting/nominating? When isn’t it?
There have been statements about the Sad Puppies slate being a slate because it’s five items in many categories: conveniently the number of possible nominations. And, while that is a compelling argument, that isn’t one I find especially convincing.
Here’s another obvious slate that should be taken into account
I’m not going to respond to the sealioning in MC’s comments here (though I did cover the answers in another recent comment on the post they commented on), but Aidan’s post actually is a good compare/contrast to discuss why I believe Aidan’s post was not a slate and the Sad Puppies/Rabid Puppies was.
Because, frankly, if you don’t think that setting up a sockpuppet site (or a hundred), declaring a slate of “SJW” works, and infesting it with a few pets to write blog comments (perhaps even buying a few fiverr gigs for even more comments) isn’t going to happen, well, that’s naive.
So, what defines a slate, then?
Well, let’s look at a bit of unpleasant second-world history for some actual historic usage, tweets by Rose Lemberg that were storified by Charles A. Tan. Actual gulag tales there.
Clearly, we don’t mean anything that dramatic with bloc voting in the Hugos. One hopes.
For starters, there’s the obvious results-based approach. Let’s look at successful nominations this year:
|Slate/List||Successful Nominations||Failed Nominations|
|Rabid Puppies (Slate)||55||12|
|Sad Puppies (Slate)||49||11|
|Aidan Moher (List)||8||34|
Aidan’s list includes two Best Novel nominees, one Long Form nominee (shared with the puppies), one Best Pro Editor Short Form nominee, one Best Professional Artist nominee, and three Best Semiprozine nominees. What’s particularly interesting—and perhaps most compelling given how much of Aidan’s blog is about art—is that his sole Fan Artist nomination wasn’t on the final ballot at all. This was the sole puppy-free category, too.
Google ranks pages; Alexa ranks sites. Alexa ranks are used by all kinds of companies to measure influence. The ranking (lower is better) means: how many sites are more influential than you are?
In this case, the milliScalzi is defined as:
1000 * (Scalzi’s Alexa Rank) / (Your Alexa Rank)
|John C. Wright||265,307||318|
|Mike Glyer / File 770||296,754||284|
|Deirdre Saoirse Moen||579,880||146|
So, given that Aidan and I hang around in the same milliScalzi hood, I feel I can say about how much influence he had this year. Let’s put it this way: it only took 23 nominations to get on the fan artist ballot, and his nomination didn’t make it onto the list.
Just to put this in perspective, here are my blog stats for that same period:
Still, I think it’s poor form to post one’s full nomination list if one has any significant influence—and Aiden having won a Hugo last year means he has some. There are bound to be hurt feelings about who was left out, even if they’d never say so. (And no, I’m not the least bit offended or hurt. I’m glad I’m not on the final ballot this year. I feel for my friends who are.)
I kind of like this one because I think it’ll take more pressure off people who feel they haven’t read the whole field.
I think only having one or two things would feel less overwhelming for someone who hadn’t read as widely.
Puppy nominee Lou Antonelli calls me a Nazi after I tossed him off my blog. (Nazi screencap here.) Protip: when your opening paragraph asserts a position I do not hold and tries to argue with me about it, things will not go well for you.
My honest reaction was amusement: you think you’re a legitimately-nominated Hugo Award nominee for Best Short Story (and Best Related Work)—and that’s the best you’ve got? Really?
Here's the plan: every Friday, let's recommend some people and/or communities to follow on Dreamwidth. That's it. No complicated rules, no "pass this on to 7.328 friends or your cat will die". Just introduce us to some new things to read.
Which brings me to Dewey’s 24 Hour Read-a-thon! If my calculations are correct (and I make no promises on that front), this will be kicking off in Australia on Saturday, 25 April at 10pm AEST. If you need to tame your own Mt TBR (don’t we all?) or are looking to connect with a great community of book bloggers, it’s not too late to join! You can sign up, follow on Twitter, join the Goodreads group or any combination of the three. The read-a-thon website will be running warm-up posts containing great advice all the way up until the event.
Don’t be intimidated by the name. You don’t have to go for the full 24 hours–I’ll be going to bed just as things get started. However, I will be participating all of Sunday. You can follow my progress on Twitter or wait for my report here next week. Please stop by, say hi and join me for a little reading of your own. If you’ve already signed up, I’d love you to leave me a comment about what you’ll be reading.
Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.