Saturday, December 24, 2005

Joseph Smith FOUGHT Polygamy ?

In the wake of Joseph's 200th birthday, why not give the poor guy a break and give him the benefit of the doubt for once...


Joseph Smith Fought Polygamy

Monday, December 05, 2005

"I want to dare to speak..."

"I want to dare to speak the language women speak
when there is no one around to correct us."


Terry Tempest Williams, Mormon Bioneer

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Women's Spirituality at Sunstone

Here is a list of Women’s Spirituality-related sessions available at the Sunstone Symposium over the last few years. There may be more but I compiled a list of the most prominent sessions. If you missed the symposium this year, or in the past, you can download sessions in MP3 format via the Internet. Cost ranges from free - $4 per session:

2005 Salt Lake Symposium

This year Sunstone introduced workshops to the symposium! The highlight of which was the return of Margaret Starbird, whose workshop was entitled

MARY MAGDALENE: THE GREATEST STORY NEVER TOLD.

Program excerpt:

Was Mary Magdalene the wife and Beloved of Jesus? What became of her after the Crucifixion of Christ? Why did the Church Fathers suppress her story, and why must we now retrieve it? This workshop will explore the legends and mythology of the Sacred Union that was once at the very heart of the Christian faith. Reclaiming Mary Magdalene as the “Sacred Bride” helps to correct the tragic “design flaw” in Western civilization—the devaluing of the Feminine—that has become painfully obvious at the threshold of the third millennium. –end of excerpt.

Unfortunately, there were technical difficultues during this session and they were unable to post an MP3 to the website. They did catch it on video however, and I emailed Sunstone to let them know that they could make some money if they decided to sell the tape, since Starbird is such a popular speaker.


SL05171, Joseph Smith, Women, and The Feminine - speakers: Margaret Toscano, Lavina Fielding Anderson, Linda King Newell - This panel examines Joseph Smith’s life and teachings in relationship to women. How did Joseph treat women? What influence did they have on him? What role did they play in his life and theology? In ushering in “the restoration of all things,” what did Joseph restore about women and the feminine?

SL05273, Advancing Feminist Sensibilities Among Mormon Men

The following session was in the preliminary program but not on MP3, does anyone know if this session took place?

This session was sponsored by the relatively NEW Moonstone!

excerpt:

PANEL. EXCAVATING THE SACRED FEMININE
In western religious cultures, female roles are often suppressed, disguised, or diminished in a variety of ways. Yet gender is central in the construction of religion, theology, texts, and culture, and women are present or integral to the formation of a religion. Panelists will discuss how their work excavates female or feminine roles from obscurity in religious contexts where they are embedded.
• MARGARET STARBIRD, author, The Woman with the Alabaster Jar and The Goddess in the Gospels (key sources used and cited by Dan Brown), also The Feminine Face of Christianity and Magdalene’s Lost Legacy.
• MAXINE HANKS, writer, lecturer, feminist theorist, Gnostic; editor, Women and Authority: Re-emerging Mormon Feminism, editor Moonstone column; author of numerous articles and essays on feminine theology
• Additional panelists to be announced


2005 Sunstone West - California Symposium featured:

SW05051, PANEL. MORMON FEMINIST LITERATURE REVIEW - speakers: MARY ELLEN ROBERTSON, CAROL LYNN PEARSON, LAVINA FIELDING ANDERSON, NADINE HANSEN - Join panelists for a lively discussion of our favorite, provocative, thought-provoking, revolutionary, inspirational, and faith-enhancing books in the field of feminist spirituality. Re-discover the classics, and hear about newer volumes too good to keep to ourselves! A list of our top picks will be available for the audience.

2004 Salt Lake Symposium

SL04091, RECLAIMING MAGDALENE: THE LOST BRIDE IN CHRISTIAN MYTHOLOGY - speakers: MARGARET STARBIRD - excerpt: In this second Smith-Pettit lecture, Margaret Starbird will discuss the partnership of Jesus and Mary Magdalene, providing evidence from the Hebrew and Christian sacred texts that the Sacred Union was originally at the heart of the Christian mythology. The loss of the 'Bride" in the Christian story has had tragic consequences. Restoring the holy mandala of the hieros gamos--the sacred marriage tha...

SL04271, REAL GODDESSES HAVE CURVES (AND IDENTITIES) - speakers: HOLLY WELKER, DOE DAUGHTREY, MAXINE HANKS, JANA BOUCK, REMY, MARY ELLEN ROBERTSON, MARGARET M. TOSCANO - symposium: 2004 Salt Lake Symposium - excerpt: This panel invites Mormon women to talk about how they find meaning and inspiration in images of divine female power drawn from other religions and traditions. What do we learn about ourselves as women and as agents of the divine by studying the stories or representations of goddesses such as Shakti, Kali, Rhiannon, Venus, Athena, Spider Woman, White Buffalo Woman, Isis, Kuan Yin, and so forth? Es...

SL04132, WOMEN’S SEARCH FOR MEANING: SPIRITUAL PRACTICES THAT HAVE ENRICHED MY LIFE - speakers: LISA HANSEN, DOE DAUGHTREY, WENDY DUTSON, JANA BOUCK REMY - This panel will explore the contribution of spiritual practices to our connection with “that which matters most.” Panelists will discuss the way prayer, meditation, temple worship, yoga, spirit world journeys, lucid dreaming, symbol and energy work, Native American sweat lodge ceremonies, and other contem­plative activities have helped them find meaning in crisis and in everyday life.

SL04153, MOTHER EARTH, FATHER PATRIARCHY: EMBRACING A MYTHOLOGY OF RESPECT, EQUALITY, AND HARMONY - speakers: JENNIFER CHANDLER JONES, KERRY SHIRTS - Deep within human consciousness and throughout mythology, we observe the earth symbolizing the feminine energy of the cos-mos. In much of the world, human beings have inherited a mythology that promotes men’s authority and dominance over the earth and over women. This core belief has left a legacy in which women are subjugated and our planet is being destroyed. As we enter the 21st century, we are...

SL04215, PERSEPHONE AWAKENED: A POETRY READING AND DISCUSSION OF NEGOTIATING FEMALE POWER WITHIN A PATRIARCHY - speakers: DANIELLE BEAZER DUBRASKY - By contrasting the traditional Demeter/Persephone myth with a contempo­rary interpretation, this session will explore how LDS women negotiate power within patri­archy and the possibilities of creating more balance. Persephone Awakened is a book of poems written in a contemporary voice of Persephone as she addresses a childhood companion whom she loses after her abduc­tion. The poems are accompanie....

SL04371, WHAT’S BEHIND THE DA VINCI CODE CRAZE? UNCOVERING THE DIVINE FEMININE - speakers: PAUL TOSCANO, JANICE ALLRED, JODY ENGLAND HANSEN, MARGARET M. TOSCANO - This panel will be a roundtable exploration of important questions raised both by Dan Brown’s book, The Da Vinci Code, and by its enthusiastic reception in the national and LDS markets. What makes the book so popular? The desire for the divine feminine? The pos¬sibility of Jesus being married? The connec¬tion between Mary Magdalene and the holy...

SL04362, 'THE GODDESS IS ALIVE AND MAGICK IS AFOOT': MORMON PAGAN WOMEN IN THE 21ST CENTURY - Reviewed separately in this BLOG!!!


2004 SUNSTONE WEST

SW04001, IN SEARCH OF HER: WOMEN AND DIVINE FEMININE - speakers: Carol Lynn Pearson, Carol P Christ

SW04041, WHERE HAVE ALL THE MORMON FEMINISTS GONE? - speakers: Peggy Fletcher Stack, Maxine M Hanks

SW04071,PANEL. FACT IN FICTION? CRACKING 'THE DA VINCI CODE' - speakers: Maxine M Hanks, Dennis McDonald, George L Gorse, Bradley A Tepaske, Kristy Coleman

2002 Salt Lake Symposium These sessions are FREE to listen to online

SL02161, Our Greatest Challenge: Why Women's Priesthood Needs to Be Recognized in the LDS Church Today - speakers: Todd M Comptom, Vicke Stewart Eastman

SL02-212, Moonstone/Sunstone Dyad as Metaphor of Wholeness - speakers: Maxine Hanks, Linda P Wilcox

SL02254, Body, Parts, and Passions: Representing the Divine Feminine in the Mormon Church - speakers: Doe Daughtrey, Margaret Toscano - This paper examines why Mother in Heaven has been progressively eliminated from institutional discourse. Viewing Mother through the lens of iconography, I suggest that the Church’s move to designate her as “sacred” is an iconoclastic act that dissociates her from Mormon collective memory. Given Mother’s significance in Mormon cosmology, why has she disappeared from our discourse and become so “sac ...

SL02336, Anniversary Looks at Two Feminist Books - speakers: Maxine Hanks, Mary Ellen Robertson, Sonja Farnsworth, Judy Dushku, Nola Wallace, Rodello Hunter

2001 Salt Lake Symposium FREE SESSIONS

SL01123, Mormon Women in the 21st Century - speakers: Lynn M Anderson, Molly M Bennion - Six years ago, I presented 'Issues in Contemporary Mormon Feminism" at the first-ever Mormon Studies Conference at the University of Nottingham, United Kingdom. This paper, revised since I presented it initially at the second Mormon Studies Conference (University of Durham, UK, 1999), takes an updated look at official, quasi-official, and unofficial views of Mormon women--especially of their role...

THE ONE BELOW WAS AWESOME!!!

SL01275, Women in Religious Studies - speakers: Maxine Hanks, Janet Kincaid, Jana Riess, Mary Ellen Robertson, Cherie Woodworth - More women are pursuing advanced degrees in religious studies than ever before and a number of Mormon women seem to be following suit. This panel is comprised of Mormon women who are doing work in religious studies and/or Mormon studies. They will describe how they became interested in studying religion, what their areas of specialty are, what work they have done in these areas, and how the...

1999 Salt Lake Symposium FREE SESSIONS

SL99276, IS THERE A FUTURE FOR MORMON FEMINSM? - speakers: Sarah R Allred, Stacy Burton, Jayne Clifford, Margaret Toscano, Cherie Woodworth

SL99313, WAS JESUS A FEMINIST? - speakers: Kent E Robson, Todd M Compton

SL99331, THE EARTH AS SACRED GROUND - speakers: Larry Stammer, Eric L Jones

SL99337, WHAT NEXT? Mormon Women in the Twenty-First Century - speakers: Christine M Durham, Jill Remington, Kathy Wilson

1997 Salt Lake Symposium FREE SESSIONS

SL97165, Sarah and Her Sisters Are Alive and Well In Non-Mormon Bookstores - speakers: Molly Bennion

1993 Salt Lake Sympoium FREE SESSIONS

SL93225, If Mormon Women Have Had the Priesthood since 1943--Why aren't They Using It? - All particpants: Linda King Newell, D Michael Quinn, Margaret Merrill Toscano, Maxine Hanks.

Monday, November 14, 2005

I WAS A REAL-LIFE SLC PUNK



The Sunstone Symposium is putting their past sessions online. I was just going through the program for the 1999 sessions and found out that my old friends from Salt Lake did a session on Salt Lake City's infamous straight edge scene!

Excerpt:
1999 Salt Lake Symposium SL99134, STRAIGHT EDGE: THE EVOLUTION OF A YOUTH MOVEMENT IN UTAH - speakers: Alex Beckstead, Paul Kreutz, Sean McClaugharity, Trent Nelson, Michael Van Wagenen - ''Straight Edge began as a philosophy that espoused a drug- and alcohol-free lifestyle among youth in the early 1980s. Deeply tied into the punk rock movement, the philosophy has always been suspect by outsiders. In the 1990s, Straight Edge is a favorite target of Utah and national media alike. How did Straight Edge develop, and why has it reached such extremes in Utah? Moderator Michael Van Wagenen . . .



Here are the chronicles of a real-life SLC punk:

I was at almost ALL of these shows at the Speedway, and the Word, and Reptile Records! As well as most of those old-school shows at 924 Gilman St. in Berkeley, like Greenday, at Operation Ivy's last show!

Click Here

Salt Lake City Weekly said, "SLC Punk! (Columbia TriStar, R) James Merendino’s rebel yell, featuring less actual SLC punk than an episode of Touched by an Angel." I thought that was hilarious.

Here's another review from Salt Lake City Weekly:
Click Here

It was quite an oversight to not include any of Salt Lake's actual legendary punk bands in the film. I'm a sucker for Magstatic myself - Click Here

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

A Snapshot in Space and Time

...So I'm listening to Glenn Kimball as I fold laundry on Coast to Coast AM...I am smoothing out a pair of pants on a hanger and Glenn says the word 'pants,' he's telling one of his legendary adventure stories to Ian Punnet. I put the hanging pants together with the hanging shirt and Glenn says, "shirt and pants."

Monday, August 15, 2005

Last BA Weekend of the Second Trimester

The synchronicity rolls on!

Over the last two semesters I spoke with my classmate, Julianne, about her senior thesis. She mentioned that she was doing it on Jeanette Rankin, the first U.S. congress-woman. We had talked about it a few times, but outside of that I hadn't given it much thought.

On Sunday,August 14, Julianne's presentation had morphed from Jeanette Rankin, to a full-blown, multi-media presentation of the History of Women's suffrage, primarily in the U.S., but also in Britain.

She gave each of our cohort members a card with a re-print of a Women's Suffrage poster from 1913. Attached to the card was a Susan B. Anthony dollar and the caption: " Spend this dollar when a woman is elected president "

I felt like something momentous was happening! During this time the Goddess felt like a tangible presence. For the next day or two I was overwhelmed with this presence!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Utah Women Were the First to Vote!



I have been reading a lot of books on gender and marriage and family and women's issues, etc. the last several weeks.

I completed Ashley Montagu's The Natural Superiority of Women a couple of days ago. I glanced at a turn-of-the-century book, Woman and Social Progress by Nellie Seeds and H.L. Mencken's 1917, In Defense of Women.

I was doing a book review of Montagu's book for my Social Construction of Identity class when I came across a passing, brief reference to Susan B. Anthony.

Suddenly, it came to my mind...something that I had heard once, that the first women to vote in the United States were Utah women. I decided to diverge from my paper for a bit and look into the matter. I did a search for "Utah" and "suffrage"

I read quite a few articles and biographies online about early Mormon feminism, and confirmed that Utah women were the first women in the United States of America to vote, 50 years before the 19th Amendment was ratified.

I am now doing some extensive research on and compiling an Amazon.com wishlist of books. The first list of books that I have compiled are diaries, ethnographies, historical writing by and about Mormon women, of the past and present, from Laurel Thatcher Ulrich to Terry Tempest Williams.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Sunstone



For the last few weeks I have been listening to one or more graduate-level seminars in Mormon studies per day at the Sunstone Symposium, via the miracle of cyberspace!

Sunstone Symposium decided that the theme for this years conference was to be the Divine Feminine!

In 2004, they asked Maxine Hanks, the editor of Women and Authority: Re-emerging Mormon Feminism if she could help them find a keynote speaker for the plenary session.

They said they wanted someone was familiar with the Divine Feminine; had published research; was well versed in Mary Magdalene; someone who was known/had books, a popular speaker with accessible ideas, oh, and if there was some kind of connection to the Da Vinci Code that would great, and not just a scholar but some one spiritual as well....

Maxine just couldn’t stop thinking: you're describing Margaret starbird!!!

Opening the session, Maxine expressed that she has noticed increasing interest in the Divine Feminine coming from men, even BYU professors!
i.e. Dan Peterson’s paper on the Asherah:
http://farms.byu.edu/display.php?table=jbms&id=223

Maxine talks about her excommunication as the typical pattern of the exiled feminine.

Maxine says that Starbird's books contain close scholarly work into the scritptures but Maxine also realized that she was "reading the words of a mystic." Dan Brown and starbird share a common thesis:

There is a hidden concept of sacred marriage or the balance of opposites symbolized by Jesus and Magdalene and it’s the central mystery, or the underlying pattern of Christianity and western culture.

After the time was turned over to Margaret she began to illustrate how the Song of Songs, aka the Song of Solomon, is at the very heart of the Christian story.

Margaret reported the story of how she came across the Book Holy Blood Holy Grail and sought out to discredit the book. She then discusses the mystical, synchronistic experiences that led her to do a 180 and come to her current thesis.

Click on the link below to go to the Sunstone MP3 store. Many of the sessions are free. For the more recent sessions they are asking for a $4 donation.

Select the 2004 Salt Lake Symposium below:
SL04091
RECLAIMING MAGDALENE: THE LOST BRIDE IN CHRISTIAN MYTHOLOGY
http://www.sunstoneonline.com/symposium/symp-mp3s.asp

JUST IN!
Margaret Starbird's appearance at the 2005 Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium. Check the link above for the latest symposium.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Moroni Olsen


I've been trying to get better at recording the synchronicity that seems to take place at an exponential rate in my life. Ususally there are just too many. But I thought I would record this one, just as a classic example:

My mom came over to my house to visit and spend the night. She wanted to watch some old movies and so we visited the indy video store here in town.

She really wanted to see A Place In the Sun with Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift and also an old Jimmy Stewart movie that I was surprised I had never heard of. It was titled Call Northside 777

After the movie was over and the credits were rolling and I was looking at the floor thinking about something entirely different, in this case Joseph Smith,
I glanced up as the credits were rolling and right in front of my face appeared the name Moroni Olsen. With a name like that I immediately knew that if nothing else he was at least an ethnic Mormon!

When I looked him up on the internet I found out that we have the same birthday! But my birthday is already a great synchronicity:
it is the anniversary of Joseph's assassination.

Another synchronous person in my life has written a book on synchronicity:

Consider the Butterfly by Carol Lynn Pearson. I grew up hearing a lot about Carol Lynn, an internationally known poet and playwright, because she was a well known Mormon feminist and she appeared on Donahue, frequently, because of her famous autobiography about caring for her husband in San Francisco, while he was dying of AIDS. She was always part of the family legend cycle because my cousin had been a good friend of hers at a much earlier time in their lives. When I grew up and moved back to the place that I was born after not living there for over 20 years, I wound up in her ward. That was a number of years ago....

How interconnected this tapestry of life is. It's a small world.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Dream

This morning I had a dream. A woman walks into the room with a big, brown dog on a leash. She had blondish hair and was kind of shi shi and demanding. She asked me if she could use a phone book. I handed her a phone book that said BRITTANY. She said, "oh do you need it?" I said, "yes" and so she handed it back to me.

Later that day I spent some time researching Brittany, which I knew nothing about. I had heard the name and was vaguely familiar with the fact that it was somewhere in France but had no idea that it meant "Little Britain" and that it was a Celtic stronghold and former colony of exiles just accross the English Channel from England.

I did a search on one of my very favorite websites, answers.com, and came up with an amazing photo of the traditional regalia of these ancient people who speak one of the very oldest languages (a celtic dialect) in Europe.

Traditional costume in Brittany around 1900


Answers.com says:
"Brittany and the Breton people have retained many old customs and traditions. Breton, their Celtic language (akin to Welsh), is spoken in traditionalist Lower (i.e., western) Brittany outside the cities (see Breton literature). Brittany has remarkable stone calvaries, some built at the close of the 16th cent. to ward off the plague. Many megalithic monuments, formerly ascribed to the druids, dot the Breton landscape, notably at Carnac. These sights and the local traditions (old-fashioned peasant dress and high lace headgear, processions, and pilgrimages), which its inhabitants jealously maintain, have made Brittany an outstanding tourist attraction."

I read up on the Breton language and Breton music. But it was when I went housesitting and pulled a book off the book case a few weeks later that was really crazy. The book, Mysterious Britain, or something like that, said that the local legends in Brittany claimed that St. Anne, the mother of Mary and the grandmother of Jesus was from Brittany!

DFC Annual Meeting

Since we moved to Davis we have been members of the Davis Food Co-op. We've decided to get involved through weekly volunteering and attending the Annual Meeting. There were a number of people there that we also got acquainted with at the Whole Earth Festival.

One of the key speakers wrote a book on the topic of Cooperatives, which are very popular here in Davis. We got a slide-show and a talk on Coopertive movements and history. Best of all we got to drink beer while we participated and had a nice little dinner there. It was a very inspiring event for me.

Whole Earth Festival 2005 Report





Jose Arguelles
was a former professor at UC Davis when he became one of the founders of Earth Day,(First Whole Earth Festival, Davis, California, 1970).

The WEF is cool because it is one of the oldest continuously running Earth Days in the world. The coolest thing about it is that it's FREE!!! So many festivals these days are just about making a profit. The best festival just also happens to be the one that my family can afford to go to! And it's within walking distance!



Unfortunately I didn't bring a camera but I got ahold of some pictures anyway and there's my little baby in the upper right hand corner with the yellow shirt, near the kids craft table.


The next best thing, well maybe it's a tie, is the sense of community. We got to see a lot of people that we knew from this blessed small town that also hosts one very effective natural foods CO-OP, also within walking distance. We also got to see a few old friends from Santa Rosa which was very cool. A mixture of old friends and new friends. Here's our new friend Morgan on a biodiesel tractor at WEF:





2005 Whole Earth Festival's Crowining Moment

HAMSA LILA!






After a long Saturday, the sun began to set and the ecstatic dance began. Hamsa Lila bills itself as a sacred, even religious act, beyond mere entertainment, and they deliver! They set up an altar and sang some prayers. A truly devotional ecstatic performance for all of us that trance danced under the stars...



Hot tears steaming in the rain



Sunday's Closing Ceremony at the 2005 Whole Earth Festival


Local activist, Sunny, inspires us with words and ritual to last us another year until we meet again.
We had a nice sing-along and a spiral dance. Sage and Tim can be spotted through the Tibetan prayer flags, above.




After the festival, Tim and I went home, or tried to. We were so amped up we just couldn't go home. We realized that a number of our acquaintances would be working with Project Compost, going through garbage and recycling late into the night. We decided to get involved!



Thursday, May 12, 2005

Permaculture and its Application to Global Justice

Holistic Movements with Permaculture

Notes from a talk at the 2005 Whole Earth Festival, Saturday May 7th:

Picture the blackboard at the front of the inside of this giant yellow dome -
A circle is drawn in the center with the word forest within it. Five spokes of a wheel emanate outwards like the rays of the sun, containing the words: diversity, cooperation, stacking, cycles and evolution.

Erik Ohlsen, the facilitator of the workshop, co-founded P.E.A. Planting Earth Activation.

In two years the Sebastopol-based group has planted 100 heirloom gardens.

Erik asked the group to re-form in a circle and then asked us to say why we think it is good to sit in a circle. The conclusion was that it was non-heirarchical. Yes, heirarchy exists in nature at times, he said, but so does cooperation, and it's useful to use de-centralization in social organizations. It "brings us into a common place."

Erik founded P.E.A. and took it to World Trade Organization protests in Seattle where they began planting guerilla gardens. They began taking over traffic meridians. Eric said that he wanted to create a model, bringing solutions in a place of resistance, and not just shut down the streets. During the Battle In Seattle Eric saw mega-unity-in-diversity from punks to business suits.

Our host gave us a basic definition of Permaculture: Modeling nature, create a "forest" of perrenial plants, and create a permanent food-culture...it's basically "food forest" gardening.


Eric's thesis was that Permaculture model can be applied to every aspect of culture, not just gardening. We need to model a forest in how we design every aspect of society.

Diversity the diversity we find in nature and therefore Permaculture. We are currently experiencing a proliferation of monoculture and homogenization in both farming and western corporate culture.

Cooperation it is a Darwinian myth that all is competition in nature. Competition does exist but there is also cooperation. Scientists couldn't understand how a strawberry plant was able to live and produce fruit in the understory of the rain forest with so little light available. They discovered that the tree whose leaves were high and able to reach the sun would produce the sugars and could bring them down to the mycorrhyza (fungi) which would deliver the sugar to the strawberries.

Stacking In nature and Permaculture "stacking" is an arrangement of plants to take advantage of all possible space, using tall and medium-sized trees with a lower shrub and herb layer. Care must be taken so that water and light compettion are at a minimum. The societal implications were not recorded in my notes on this one.

[Relinquishing Power] Another principle in Permaculture or a self-maintained, organized system (not listed on the board as one of the spokes). This is vital to understanding power dynamics, according to Erik.

Cycles Everything works in cycles. Time.

Evolution How can we evolve out of corporate empire?

IMHO, these last two seem more suited to being combined.

Erik asks: How can we apply Permaculture design to create communities that will last? It doesn't just take sustainability but "Resistance to Ivaders", using Starhawk's analogy to the pattern of historical patriarchal takover/military occupation. Erik works closely with Starhawk.


Permaculture is about webs/relationships/everything connected to everything else...

"We're a circle of designers!"

A group participation excercise begins:

The dome is divided into four quadrants: Yes, No, Effective, Not Effective.

We answer questions by moving to different quadrants and then we discuss our views. Why did we choose the way we did.

The questions include:

Is Peak Oil real?
Will solar power save the world?
Will biotech feed the world?

I went to the Yes quadrant for Peak Oil being real.

For "will solar power save the world" I went to No. Most people went to yes, except for me and Tim and Gabe. I spoke into the microphone and asked, "don't solar panels utilize some petroleum in their manufacture?" Gabe expressed concern over disposal issues.

The biotech issue was long and passionate, of course.

After the excercise Erik began to continue to inspire with more tales from the front lines. He started this organization, he said, to provide an alternative to the polarization rampant within the social justice community. He was tired of everything being "No" and "against." "The problem is the solution," he says. "Think whole systems."

In September of 2003, at the WTO ministerial in Cancun, they set up an eco-camp, utilizing rainwater catching, graywater, composting and rainforest gardening to create models. If you submerge enough oyster shells in acid rain it can neutralize the water.

"We don't have a water crises but a runoff crises! A consciousness crises!"

Every group of people contains all aspects of community for survival: you've got doctors, sewers, talents galore. We are each others resources.

The stories about geurilla gardening at the May, 2003 summit on genetic engineering in Sacramento were the most entertaining and inspiring. The homeless were able to harvest some of the produce, as one homeless woman who was present testified. She said the gardens are still being propagated through seed-saving.

Erik discussed the process of making seedballs and throwing them, in shell containers to protect from birds, onto degraded property. They include a diversity of seeds so that the plants that prefer to grow in that particular environment can choose to do so.

The seedballs were eventually charged with a crime and arrested by the local police. The police said they were weapons and put them in a box and hauled them off.
P.E.A. decided to host a workshop on the steps of the police station. They got a press-conference out of it. He said this is so much about "messenging." The cops got a press-conference out of it too. The police started lobbing seed-balls on film and called them weapons.

The conclusion of the day was: "We need sustainability and social justice woven together."

From the program guide: "Erik Ohlson is a Permaculture, Global Justice Organizer/Educator. he has spent the last six years building movements and nurturing campaigns that range from community gardens with ecological designs to global justice actions that confront Empire while modeling solutions to privatization. He tavels internationally, teaching permaculture courses and working with civil society movements in building soloutions and resistance at summit meetings of the WTO, G8, IMF, FTAA."

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Thursday Night Report - March 17

My Online Journal

I spent Thursday looking for a job. I could feel nothing but terror regarding my existence for no apparent reason. A friend that I recently got back in touch with, Jahn, (it turns out) has been studying Tibetan Buddhism for about as long as I have, on and off the last year or two. He Instant Messaged me. I was overwhelmed with tasks but I figured what the heck. We ended up chatting for a long time about life and I printed it out and titled it, "Buddhist Journal Entry." I told him how I felt. After we were done it was time to go to Shambhala center. As soon as I left the house I started having synchronicity with the conversation. Before our talk on life, spirituality and philosophy he inquired about my genealogical research. I told him that I was descended from the Le Strange family and also the Strangeways family, just to make him laugh, although it's quite true. On my way to Shambhala, Tim and I stopped at the burrito place and the guy standing in front of us in line had a Doors T-shirt on that said,
"When you’re strange
Faces come out of the rain
When you’re strange
No one remembers your name
When you’re strange"

Another synchronicity:
I told Jahn in the midst of our pep talk that I needed a friend but according to his logic a friend is a "crutch." His response was:
congruent_one says:
But I am just YOU
Ariel says:
yeah I know we are one
Ariel says:
I really do experience that a lot with people - that they are an extension of me
congruent_one says:
but you don't KNOW how expansive your ego is, do it is easier just to explain it as DEATH
congruent_one says:
the ONLY way out of ego/death is to NOT give fear any space
Ariel says:
well my ego is fighting its own demise harder then ever and its tearing me apart
congruent_one says:
Yeeeeeesssssssss
congruent_one says:
Have you ever had a dream neo.....
congruent_one says:
how would you know the dream world from the REAL one?


So when I arrived at the Shambhala center, the first vehicle I saw had a license plate on it that said, "I AM U."

Once inside the center yet another synchronicity occured:
Usually the meditation is just a sitting meditation. For the first time since I started attending the center, at the end of the meditation, they performed a "walking meditation," after I asked Jahn to tell me what walking meditation is:

congruent_one says:
'free your mind' is not what most people think
Ariel says:
what is it then?
congruent_one says:
people normally think it means a shift in perspective - and in Neo's case, a huge one
congruent_one says:
NO MIND
Ariel says:
why is it a secret?
congruent_one says:
Free the mind from it's thinking
congruent_one says:
no thought
congruent_one says:
no form
congruent_one says:
no action
congruent_one says:
only BE
congruent_one says:
empty
congruent_one says:
receptive
Ariel says:
but its a paradox I've read a million books that say the same thing and experienced it at times so whats the big secret?
congruent_one says:
in the space of 'no thought' is NO TIME
congruent_one says:
this is a major theme of siddhis
Ariel says:
I am not surprised about the siddhis thing
congruent_one says:
these monks aren't even awake most of the time - not in alpha like we are
congruent_one says:
in theta, the limitlessness of dreamtime meets the manifest world
congruent_one says:
what do you suppose this would look like?
Ariel says:
I have had some success in treating waking life like a lucid dream
congruent_one says:
good
Ariel says:
I just wish I could stick with it more
congruent_one says:
walking meditation is closer to living a theta state 'waking life'
Ariel says:
hmmm so whats the big secret?
congruent_one says:
the problem with not being prepared or disciplined is the accidental creation of a run-away dream manifesting in our world
Ariel says:
how does one perform walking mediation?
Ariel says:
That's why I started going to Shamballa, to try to develop some self discipline and its the hardest thing in the world right now
congruent_one says:
That children are already living this life - naturally, already - and we 'Babylonize' then right out of what you and I are trying to get back into
Ariel says:
I feel so very very far from self discipline
Ariel says:
OK well children are not really self disciplined so that answers it
Ariel says:
I am like a child quite a bit I must say
Ariel says:
so I must be doing better than I realized
congruent_one says:
the mind has been on autopilot for 34 years. you'll need to break that habit.
congruent_one says:
the 'secret' is simply this:
Ariel says:
how? What do I do? I can't stand sitting meditation. What is walking meditation?
congruent_one says:
when you are willing to lay down your life for your fellow man....
congruent_one says:
...oh
Ariel says:
I like mantras. I need a good mantra these days. I read really cool ones in books but dont know how to pronounce.
congruent_one says:
walking meditation is taking the theta state successfully attained (typically via sitting meditation) and putting it into motion without disturbing the theta awareness - which is friggin hard
Ariel says:
Maybe I could ask at Shambhala


Lastly: When I heard Acharya David Schneider's talk on the Rigdens, many of the words and phrases that he emphasized had been spoken by Jahn earlier, especially the part about relaxing.

Ten pages of notes from Schneider's talk on the Rigdens to follow.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Quote for the Day

My Online Journal

"The universe is not a beautiful balance; it is a chaotic miracle."

From The Darkness Before the Dawn
http://www.elcollie.com/st/darkness.html

Bliss.......................

My Online Journal

Bliss......................

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Intoxicating

My Online Journal

Great! Intoxiating? oh man......I can't wait to get off this fast and be 'normal' again. I want to eat organic cheese puffs.

Fasting

My Online Journal

....or maybe its the equinox AND fasting........

woa, could this actually be the 7th day of my fast?
For about 2-3 days I have been eating seeds and pineapple and to a lesser degree apple juice w/ wheat grass powder and once in awhile a little oatmeal or plain cultured yoghurt or lentil dahl and lots of herbs and teas.

today I am doing a little tea and mostly water all day...

ITS THE NEW MOON

More Intoxiating Weather

My Online Journal

We took Sage to the garden last night, in the cool of the evening this time, to dig out Bermuda grass...ah the sunset...aahh the sacramento valley....

We just moved here in January but I have some deep ties to this land.....

maybe it's the nearing of the equinox and/or the fertile fields of 'gold coutry' - I haven't felt a distinct season or a breeze just so full of life force in a very long time.....

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Ah Sunburn!

My Online Journal

I just got back from the Shambhala Center and I've got a sunburn from our lascivious day in the garden!

Tonight I showed up at 7pm for the Thursday night meditation with the Songs of Milarepa following. But I should start from the beginning.

On Thursday, February 27, I showed up on Thursday night at the Shambhala center on "D" st. in downtown Davis. That is one of two days a week that they offer meditation instruction. There was another man who showed up when I did. He said he saw the sign and wanted to try it. A woman named Rebbeca took us to the annex to instruct us.

She mentioned that in many meditation traditions, such as Zen, small cushions that are low to the ground are used. In Tibetan Buddhism, she said, they use much higher cushions and sometimes even add another one to that. Next, she instructed, was to sit up straight and that in this tradition rather than cupping the hands or something similar that they just rest the hands on the thighs, palms facing down. She also noted that in this tradition, rather than the eyes being closed, they leave the eyes open but cast downward towards the ground. She said to just focus on the breath and let any thoughts go. Don't try to control the thought.

After this basic instruction and practice was completed by about 7:30. The other man left. Rebecca said that I was welcome to stay for the Songs of Milarepa, which I was curious about.

Actually before the Songs started, a very long liturgy that is chanted by the entire group, took place. This was called the Sadhana of Mahamudra. All the Tibetan Buddhism that had seeped into me over the semesters of religious studies training had prepared me to plow through this more easily than otherwise. It was very energizing. Very potent. After the recitation the man sitting next to me, Richard, commented that I must have had some practice with the chant. I said well maybe in another life but this was my first time in this one. we sang and sang from a songbook with songs by Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche and Milarepa and Marpa and others. There were even a couple of Celtic songs in there that just happened to fit in with the Bhuddhist songs. It was nice since one of the tunes was one of my favorites.

The day that I went to the Shambhala center for the first time, I spoke with an old friend that I hadn't spoken with for a long time. He said he was closely following the work of Father Francis Tiso who is working with IONS and Esalan Institute to try and scientifically document and research extraordinary human abilities such as the Rainbow Body. I told my friend that was very interesting because I was on my way to the Shabhala center.

The following week the synchronicity increased. I was late to the center so I waited in the lobby through the meditation and when that was over there was no Mahamudra that week so I joined in for the buddhist songs. I find them to be very effective because they stay in ones head for hours and days afterwards. On my way home I reached in the newspaper bin for a free copy of the Sacramento News and Review and the cover story was on a young man, Stephen Keale, who had hemophilia, AIDS, and hepatitis. The man had lived an extraordinary life and it led him to study tibetan buddhism. After affecting the lives of many including his amazing wife he went to a retreat in Clear Lake and died there. His teacher Sogyal Rinpoche said that it was a great blessing to all. Here's the story:
http://www.newsreview.com/issues/Chico/2005-03-03/cover.asp

Tonight I made it for everything, meditation, the Sadhana of Mahamudra, and the songs. Tommorow I will write about my meditation experiences.

The Most Beautiful Day In The World

My Online Journal

Today is the third day of my purification fast, mostly a liquid diet with herbs. Recent medical testing and concerns have been stressful.

The day before yesterday Tim and I went gardening for most of the day and worked the soil until we could barely walk. This morning the breeze and the sun were so ethereal we just couldn't stay indoors despite the fact that we have plenty to do, so we went out and worked the soil again for a good few hours.

Tonight is the Songs of Milarepa at the Shambhala Center.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

My Online Journal

My Online Journal

Wow that was easy! I wanted to start logging and keeping track of some of my independent studies, among other things. Just to kind of give my self credit for all the studying and learning I do on a daily basis and to kind of keep track of my trajectory.

I was doing a google search on herbs and was inspired to go off on another google tangent "really quickly" of course and came across this very interesting article on Hermes and ancient history. I guess Hermes is a very apropos way to christen my new page!
http://www.skyscript.co.uk/mercurymyth.html

later skater...lilah-bee

My New E-Journal

My Online Journal

Hello World!

This is a journal for college credit. I got tired of writing by hand and thought this might be more convenient, so here goes!

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Those Worthy of My Mysteries: Mormonism and Gnosticism by Lynn Ridenhour

“…To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.” –Acts 1:3

Without a doubt, there is great correlation between present-day LDS beliefs and a group of ancient Gnostic texts found in Egypt: The Nag Hammadi library.

Let’s briefly explore the following subjects:

1) Gnosticism
2) The End-Time Hidden Treasure Motif
3) Secret Writings & Teachings
4) Equality with God
5) Three Degrees of Glory – Three Types of Persons
6) The Veil of Forgetfulness
7) The Spirit Prison – The Spirit World, and
8) Eternal Marriage

The above list is definitely present-day “Mormon doctrine.” It’s also ancient doctrine. Many Christians today are unaware—the above teachings were part of the true secret teachings of the early apostles. More than a few scholars believe that our Lord, during his post-resurrection period, taught the very mysteries that were lost to the church down through the centuries.

It’s not our purpose, however, to go into great depth concerning these mysteries. Much like an Impressionistic painter, we will simply touch on them. And then draw our connections. First…

GNOSTICISM

Of course, the word “Gnosticism” comes from the word Gnosis – which means “secret” or “hidden mystery.” Unlike most of our Church Fathers, Origin acknowledged that there was a “true gnosis,” or secret teachings of the apostles. Regardless of the “philosophies of men,” the mixing of Greek philosophy and Oriental beliefs, or the pretenders of false secrets trying to impose their doctrines in place of the true secret teachings of the apostles – there was a “true gnosis.” There was a secret teaching of the apostles. And Jesus taught those mysteries to those who are worthy.

Times have not changes. Perhaps here’s a good place to interject a parallel. Perhaps you’ve heard the comment, “…the teachings in the temple are not secret; they’re sacred.” I beg to differ: the teachings in the temple are secret and sacred! As Latter-day Saints, we need to stop apologizing for our Savior’s secret teachings. They’re sacred. But they’re secret too. Hidden from the eyes of the world.

Yes, there was – and is- a true gnosis. True Christianity is a Gnostic Christianity. A true Christian is a Gnostic. He knows something the world does not. He knows — Angels and Spirit Beings walk among us. They ride our elevators and have lunch with us. The world sees nothing but buttons and bosses and bulletin boards. We see translated beings and signs and tokens.

THE END-TIME HIDDEN TREASURE MOTIF

Jesus likened the kingdom of heaven unto treasure hid in a field (Mt. 13:44). In these latter days, truth like a hidden treasure, will come forth out of the ground. Listen to the Gospel of the Egyptians:

“…The Great Seth wrote this book with letters in one hundred thirty years. He placed it in the mountain that is called Charaxio, in order that, at the end of times and eras, it may come forth and reveal this incorruptible, holy race of the great savior, and those who dwell with them in love, and the great, invisible, eternal Spirit, and his only begotten Son…And you will leave this book upon a mountain and you will adjure the guardian, ‘Come Dreadful One.’”

Taken directly out of the Nag Hammadi library!

Of course, the parallel is obvious. The hidden treasure motif is exactly the story of Moroni hiding the gold plates up in a hill until the end of time. Yet, the Nag Hammadi library was not discovered until 100 years after Joseph Smith’s death in 1844. Amazing.

SECRET WRITINGS & TEACHINGS

Why do we have difficulty with the notion that our Savior taught many secret things to his apostles, commanding them not to reveal his teachings until a later date (Mt. 7:6; 17:1-9)?

Hear the Gospel of Thomas:

“These are the secret sayings which the living Jesus spoke and which Didymos Judas Thomas wrote down. Jesus said, ‘It is to those worthy of my mysteries that I tell my mysteries.’”

Listen to the Apocryphon of John:

“The teaching of the savior and the revelation of the mysteries, and the things hidden in silence, even these things which he taught John, his disciple.”

And what of the Apocryphon of James:

“Since you asked that I send you a secret book which was revealed to me and Peter by the Lord, I could not turn you away or gainsay you; but I have written it in the Hebrew alphabet and sent it to you, and you alone. But since you are a minister of salvation of the saints, endeavor earnestly and take care not to rehearse this text to many – this that the Savior did not wish to tell all of us, his twelve disciples. But blessed will they be who will be saved through the faith of this discourse.”

Again, let’s draw the parallel.

In the above Gnostic scriptures is contained the notion that there are certain teachings reserved for those who are ready for them. Such a notion today has been lost among the majority of Christians. Yet has been restored in the LDS temple endowment ceremony. Simply put, Christ has his secret writings and teachings for those who are ready for them. In the truest sense of the word, to become a Christian is to become an Initiate.

One enters, in other words, a Secret Order when one comes unto Christ. Another restored teaching: there are other writings currently withheld, for we’re not ready for them. There’s more to come. With great joy and expectation, we Initiates await these writings; i.e. the writings of Enoch, the sealed portions of the Book of Mormon, writings of the Lost Tribes. And I’m sure there are more. Let’s move on.

EQUALITY WITH GOD

The doctrine – being as God is – did not originate with a coined couplet. Listen to the Gnostic Scriptures, the Tripartite Tractate:

“All those who glorify the Father have their begetting eternally, - they beget in the act of assisting one another – since the emanations are limitless and immeasurable and since there is no envy on the part of the Father toward those who came forth from him in regard to their begetting something equal or similar to Him, since he is the one who exists in the totalities, begetting and revealing himself. Whomsoever he wishes, he makes into a father, of whom he in fact is Father, and a god, of whom he in fact is God, and he makes them the Totalities, whose entirety is…their begetting is like the process of extension, as the Father extends himself to those he loves, so that those who have come forth from him become him as well.”

What a glorious passage. If I may say so, LDS to the core. The passage actually needs no commentary. There are some passages it behooves us to meditate upon rather than debate upon. This is one of those passages.

Being as God is. Equality with God was a central theme running throughout the Gnostic scriptures.

THREE DEGREES OF GLORY – THREE TYPES OF PERSONS

The three degrees of glory is also an ancient teachings embraced in Gnostic scriptures. AS well as in The Lost Books of the Bible and the Forgotten Books of Eden. For instance, take the orthodox Christian teachings of the Shepherd Hermas, who taught that all men are given a bough from the Tree of Life. Later when judged, it is by the look of the bough. For those boughs bearing more branches and fruit, that person was given a crown and allowed to dwell in the tower. For those whose branches showed some growth, they were allowed to live in the tower. For those whose branches who showed some growth they are allowed to live in the tower, yet without a crown. Others, showing promise, were allowed to go in the courtyard, while the disobedient were not allowed entrance, but were cast out. Three degrees of glory – three types of persons.

Again, we make reference to The Tripartite Tractate:

“They were fathers of the third glory,,, Each one of those who give glory has his place and his exaltation and his dwelling and his rest, which consists if the glory which he brings forth.”

Let’s move on.

THE VEIL OF FORGETFULNESS

I glory in Joseph Smith’s account of the creation story, He shed so much new light. Added so much to the story that had been lost. He let us know by revelation, man had a pre-existence before the garden of Eden.

So do the Gnostic scriptures. Hear the Apocryphon of John concerning the creation of man:

“This is the tomb of the newly-formed body with which the robbers had clothed the man, the bond of forgetfulness; and he became a mortal man.

And he (Adam) saw the woman (Eve) beside him. And in that moment the luminous Epinoia appeared, and she lifted the veil which lay over his mind.

And he became sober from the drunkenness of darkness. And he recognized his counter-image, and he said, “This is indeed bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh.” And when Adam recognized the likeness of his own foreknowledge, he begot the likeness of the son of man. He called him Seth according to the way of the race in the aeons…And he made them drink water of forgetfulness, from the chief archon, in order that they might not know from where they came.”

So much similarity. So much LDS doctrine. We were indeed spirit children of our Heavenly Father before we graced this earth. Yes, the veil of Forgetfulness will one day be lifted.

THE SPIRIT PRISON – THE SPIRIT WORLD

To the Latter-day Saint, the spirit world is real; the after-life is not static. The Prison House? Or Paradise? Both are intermediate states of the soul. Both temporary homes of the departed.

There is an almost uncanny resemblance of thought recorded in the Apocryphon of John:

“And I said, ‘Lord, those, however, who have not known to whom they belong, where will their souls be?’ And he said to me, ‘In those the despicable spirit (Satan) has gained strength when they went astray. And he burdens the soul and draws it to the worlds of evil, and he casts it down into forgetfulness. And after it comes out of (the body), it is handed over to the authorities, who came into being through the archon, and they bind it with chains and cast it into prison and consult with it until it is liberated from the forgetfulness and acquires knowledge. And if thus it becomes perfect, it is saved.’”

Talk about a clarification of Peter’s gospel! I can think of no better way of explaining the preaching of the gospel to the dead! The Prison House and the Spirit World were ancient teachings of the true gnosis.

ETERNAL MARRIAGE

I have saved the best to last.

Clearly, the doctrine of Eternal Temple Marriage was taught by early Christians. It’s the main theme in the Gospel of Phillip. According to James M. Robinson, “When Eve was separated from Adam, the original androgynous unity was broken. The purpose of Christ’s coming is to reunite Adam and Eve. Just as a husband and wife unite in the bridal chamber, so also the reunion affected by Christ takes place in a bridal chamber – the sacramental one, where a person receives a foretaste and assurance of ultimate union with an angelic, heavenly counterpart.” (Nag Hammadi Library in English, p.140)

Wow!

There is so much hidden truth in the above passage. So much dripping symbolism pertinent to our times. The Gospel of Phillip refers to the three chambers of the temple. That the inner chamber, the Holy of Holies, is the bridal chamber, Latter-day Saints, obviously, will recognize the great similarity between the modern ordinance of eternal marriage in the sealing room of the temple and Phillip’s bridal chamber.

I can do no better than to quote again from Robinson’s Nag Hammadi Library in English:

“Great is the mystery of marriage! For without it the world would not exist…There were three buildings specifically for sacrifice in Jerusalem.

The one facing west was called ‘the holy.’
Another facing south was called ‘the holy of the holy.’
The third facing east was called ‘the holy of the holies,’ the place where only the high priest enters.
Baptism is ‘the holy’ building
Redemption is ‘the holy of the holy.’
‘The holy of the holies’ is the bridal chamber…

…Christ came to repair the separation which was from the beginning and again unite the two, and to give life to those who died as a result of the separation and unite them. But the woman is united to her husband in the bridal chamber. Indeed, those who have united in the bridal chamber will no longer be separated… If some belong to the order of the priesthood, they will be able to go within the veil with the high priest… There is glory which surpasses glory. There is power which surpasses power. Therefore, the perfect things have opened to us, together with the hidden things of truth. The holies of the holies were revealed, and the bridal chamber invited us in” (pp. 148-159).

Need we say more.

The Gospel of Phillip teaches that man and woman were separated at the Fall of Adam/ Consequently, the Great Plan of God all along was to reunite man and woman in the bridal chamber. Never to be separated again.

IN CONCLUSION

These grand ordinances, lost and recovered by Christ during his post-ressurection period and secretly taught to his apostles during those forty days prior to his ascension, clearly demonstrate – the person holding a temple recommend in his hand, entering the house of the Lord where “Holiness Unto The Lord” is above the doorway, where he is washed and anointed, given a garment and a hidden name, then prepared to enter the bridal chamber where he is sealed to his beloved bride for all eternity – understands, the Lord did everything in a mystery.

He understands the precious ordinances – both ancient and modern – are necessary to receive God’s greatest gift: to become Christ before a dying world.

May God bless those worthy of His mysteries.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Mormon Mysticism


"The God of Joseph Smith is a daring revival of the God of some of the Kabbalists and Gnostics.

Mormonism is a purely American Gnosis..." Harold Bloom,The American Religion


Posts by Elizabeth Russell:
The Hebrew Goddess
The Christian Goddess
Mary Magdalene
The Mormon Goddess
Christian Shaman / Was Jesus Christ's Atonement the Ultimate Magical Act?
The Once and Future Zion

Websites:
THE BACKYARD PROFESSER: Respectful, Intelligent Discussion of Ancient Texts, Biblical Scholarship, and Religions Focusing Mostly on Mormonism

MORMON MYSTIC (Yahoo Group / listserv)


LATEST UPDATES:
Book Takes on 'Da Vinci' From an LDS Viewpoint - Dynasty of the Holy Grail: Mormonism's Sacred Bloodline

"Joseph Smith’s Psychedelic Voyage,” Gnostic Media Podcast

Online Articles
  • Mormonism: An Eastern Religion? by Melissa Inouye
  • Joseph Smith: America's Hermetic Prophet

  • Elaine Pagels on Mormon Response to the Gnostic Gospels

  • Those Worthy of My Mysteries: Mormonism & Gnosticism

  • Joseph Smith and Kabbalah: The Occult Connection

  • Mormondom's own Gnostic Priest, Lance Owens, does Da Vinci Code!

  • Joseph Smith As Latter-day Halcyon: Spiritual Mythology and Mormon Symbolism

  • Psychedelics in Early Mormonism: Restoration and the Sacred Mushroom

  • Emma Smith as Shaman

  • Gematria in the Book of Mormon

  • Kerry Shirts' Mormon Mystic Page

  • The Masonic Moroni Home Page

  • Book Review: The Book of Mormon and Other Hidden Books

  • Book Review: Written By the Finger of God (more on Kabbalah and the B of M)

  • The Practice of Hiding up Treasures Unto the Lord

  • The legendary Mormon-Mystic list-serv

  • Mormon Mystic thread at Sunstone BLOG

  • MormonMysticism.com

  • Mormons and Their Crystal Balls (non-mormon, evangelical website)

  • Seers and Seer Stones by Mormon fundamentalist Ogden Kraut (hosted on anti-mormon website)

  • Joseph Smith: New Age Prophet

  • Hugh Nibley's: The Early Christian Prayer Circle

  • A Note on Termas


  • Interesting Photographs

    Recommended Reading

    Artwork: (Top) Alchemical Rose-Croix and Beehive with alchemical flask, from Geheimnisse einiger Philosophen und Adepten 1780 via alchemywebsite.com Unlike (some of) their spiritual ancestors the Rosicrucians, and like (some of their other spiritual ancestors) their Templar forerunners, Mormons actually reject the iconography of the "uneven" cross. The Beehive, however, should be familiar to anyone who has visited Utah. In a basic sense, The Rose-Croix could be analogous to the masonic compass and square or the Asian yin and yang symbol. (Bottom) Maier's famous picture: the circle becomes a square, then a triangle then again a circle.

    Friday, March 04, 2005

    The Mormon Goddess





    ..."I had learned to call thee Father,

    Thru thy Spirit from on high,

    But until the key of knowledge was restored,

    I knew not why.


    In the heav'ns are parents single?

    No, the thought makes reason stare!

    Truth is reason; truth eternal

    Tells me I've a Mother there"...



    Invocation, or the Eternal Father and Mother, A Hymn by Eliza R. Snow



    The Tree of Life as Nurturing Mother

    The Bee in the Judeo-Christian, Essene, Mormon, and Esoteric Traditions

    To Bee, or not to Bee: History in the Book of Mormon, Pearl of Great Price Noting The Deseret Connection

    The Tools of the Ancient Bee Priestess

    LISTEN to the Bee Priestesses:

    http://www.myspace.com/thebeepriestess

    http://www.myspace.com/whenthedrummerswerewomen

    Online Articles







    Now Online!
    Complete texts newly online:
    Women and Authority: RE-Emerging Mormon Feminism



    Strangers in Paradox: Explorations in Mormon Theology

    Further Reading:



    Artwork via Essenes.net

    Thursday, March 03, 2005

    Mary Magdalene


    And the companion of the [Lord] Mary Magdalene.

    [He] loved her more than all the disciples, and used to kiss her often on her mouth.

    The rest of the disciples... They said to him "Why do you love her more than all of us?"

    The Savior answered and said to them,"Why do I not love you like her?

    When a blind man and one who sees are both together in darkness,

    they are no different from one another.

    When the light comes, then he who sees will see the light,

    and he who is blind will remain in darkness."


    --The Gospel of Phillip, Nag Hammadi Library


    Free Online Articles and Books

    Recommended Viewing

    Tuesday, March 01, 2005

    The Hebrew Goddess


    "Thus says the Lord: Where is your Mother's bill of divorce with which I cast her out?… because of your crimes was your Mother an outcast."

    Isaiah 50:1

    "Belief in Asherah seems, in fact, to have been a conservative position in ancient Israel; criticism of it was innovative." --Daniel C. Peterson

    NEW! Khokhmah and Sophia by Max Dash├║

    Free Online Articles


    Recommended Reading


    "Thus says the Lord: Where is your Mother's bill of divorce with which I cast her out? … because of your crimes was your Mother an outcast." (Isaiah 50:1, Avraham Gileadi Translation of Isaiah)

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