What Does It Mean To Be A “Wild Woman”?

Wild Women follow no religion, we follow the teachings of our ancestors and Nature is our temple. Nature is our Mother and teacher. Our sisters provide the strength we need, and the Goddess holds us within her heart. The Wild Woman follows nothing but her Wild Heart. 
~Shikoba

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Wild Women follow no religion…

In the Garden of Eden, there was no such thing as religion. There was no need. Because Eve walked side-by-side with her creator, able to talk about anything, anytime, as easily as you talk to a loved one who is lying in bed with you. It wasn’t until after the Fall that Eve had to find a new means of maintaining her relationship with her creator.

…we follow the teachings of our ancestors and Nature is our temple.

Before the Fall, Eve lived in Nature. Specifically, in a garden. A garden called “Eden.”

Regarding following “the teachings of our ancestors”:

“Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”
~Luke 24:4

I’m not implying that Jesus is a Wild Woman. He’s not a woman. But: He is wild:

Then the high priest tore his robes and said, “He has uttered blasphemy. What further witnesses do we need? You have now heard his blasphemy.”
~Matthew 26:65

I am saying that following the teachings of one’s ancestors — fulfilling (i.e., doing) what was written — was essential to Eve’s salvation.

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Nature is our Mother and teacher.

Question: What do a woman and a tree have in common?

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Our sisters provide the strength we need…

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…and the Goddess holds us within her heart.

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The Wild Woman follows nothing but her Wild Heart.

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He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart…
~Ecclesiastes 3:11

A Conversation With “The Closet Atheist”

Thank you to The Closet Atheist for her questions.

And thank you to The Closet Atheist for answering my questions. You can find her answers here.

The reason for this post is: I was feeling bored and curious one day so, wanting to make the best use of my time, I decided to reach out to The Closet Atheist in order to better understand where she’s coming from, and she did the same.

Below are my answers to the questions she asked me.

1. Why are you Catholic and not another denomination?

I was raised a Catholic.

Going to church, praying alone in my room, following the 10 Commandments — these actions, and the mindset that came with them, were as natural to me as wearing clothes, bathing, or brushing my teeth. They were something I did for the sake of my well-being, and because to not do them just felt wrong.

Now, as an adult out in the world, separated from the Catholic cocoon I grew up in, my faith remains an integral part of my life, influencing my thoughts and choices.

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More about my faith in questions #2 and #4.

The reason I am not another denomination is:

I haven’t seen compelling evidence to show that another denomination, not the Catholic Church, is the “correct” expression of Jesus’ teachings.

For example: The Protestant Reformation lasted from 1517 — 1648. (Thanks, Google.) So, going by Jesus’ words to Peter — Matthew 16:18 — that means that, if any one of those Protestant churches established in the wake of the Reformation is the “true” Church, than Jesus waited 16 centuries to establish his church. And I just don’t see the reasoning in that. When Jesus says “On this rock I will build my church,” does that not imply that Jesus is building his church on this rock right then, not more than 1,500 years later?

Through apostolic succession, the Catholic Church can trace its origin back to Peter.* Which is something that Protestant churches, established more than 1,500 years after Peter’s time, can’t do.

2. Why do people sometimes say that Catholicism is a separate religion from Christianity rather than just a denomination within it?

I have not heard that before — that Catholicism is its own separate, non-Christian religion.

Regarding why people would say such a thing: I don’t know.

Skimming The Catechism of the Catholic Church, it’s clear that a foundation of the Catholic Church is the teachings found in the Bible. So this claim of Catholicism being “a separate religion from Christianity,” as far as I can tell, has no legs to stand on.

When it comes to Catholicism’s relationship to Christian denominations such as Lutheranism, Calvinism, Presbyterianism, etc., here is how I see it:

Picture a tree. Picture the trunk and the branches going up and up and up. The Catholic Church is the trunk, and the denominations (like Lutheranism and Presbyterianism) are the branches. Being offshoots, they wouldn’t exist without the trunk.**

3. If there was one thing you wish that Christians today would or wouldn’t do, or something you wish they understood about Christianity and what it means to be a Christian, what would it be?

I wish that Christians today wouldn’t conflate faith with politics.

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I’ve been called a communist because I said that if I had to choose between saving one person from Hell or saving America, I would choose to save that one person. After all: Countries don’t last forever, but the soul does.

Jesus said “Go and make disciples of all nations,” not “Go and win an election.” (Matthew 28:19)

4. If you had a teenage or young adult child that told you that he or she is not a Christian, how would you respond to them?

I would be proud of them.

Why?

Because: Such an act would show that they were using their brains, not just accepting what they were taught because it’s what was expected of them.

The Bible encourages one to use their brain:

“Test everything. Hold fast to what is good.”
~1 Thessalonians 5:21

“…be as shrewd as serpents…”
~Matthew 10:16

I would be glad that this young person is testing everything and being as shrewd as a serpent. The fact that, as a result, this person is now an atheist, would not bother me.

What would bother me is if this person, as a result of becoming an atheist, did not keep an open mind — if this person refused to hear or consider reasons to believe in a god. And I would be just as bothered by someone who did believe in a god refusing to ever consider the possibility that there isn’t one.

Why?

Faith.

Faith, by its nature, requires uncertainty, however small.

That’s why the Bible — Hebrews 11:1 — says that faith is “…the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”*** (Emphasis mine.)

The fact of the matter is: Regardless of how strongly I believe there is a god, and regardless of what I see as evidence for the existence of a god, until I die and either enter the void or stand in front of the pearly gates, I won’t know, with certainty, if a god exists.

UPDATE:

I realize that these words don’t answer your question: If you had a teenage or young adult child that told you that he or she is not a Christian, how would you respond to them?

This is how I would respond:

I wouldn’t mind that they weren’t a Christian.

Not everyone is, and not everyone will be.

Would I want this person to become a Christian? Yes.

But: I have to accept the reality that, for one reason or another, that might not happen.

So instead of beating them over the head with a Bible, I would tell them: “Keep on seeking goodness, truth, and beauty in all things, and one day you will find where that goodness, truth, and beauty comes from.”

5. How do you deal with doubt in terms of God’s existence?

If there is one thing that could cause me to not believe in a God, it is the violence I see in the world nowadays.

Which is one reason why I don’t like watching or reading the news. Knowing that there is nothing I can do to, for example, stop a terrorist attack in Britain, causes me to feel depressed and consider notions that I otherwise wouldn’t. Like committing suicide.

But, like a boomerang returning to the person who threw it, I always find myself returning to my belief in a higher power.

The reason why is: As horrible as the universe is, it’s also beautiful.

Two examples of beauty:

The Incorrupt

There are people who, even after being dead for years, have not decomposed.

For example: Mary of Jesus de León y Delgado, O.P., who died in 1731:

Juan Diego’s tilma

A garment bearing an image of the Blessed Virgin Mary was undamaged after a bomb went off next to it.

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In conclusion:

Thank you for your questions, The Closet Atheist. I hope you were satisfied by my answers. And if you were dissatisfied with anything I said, let me know.

I hope the day will soon come where you can leave the closet.

*Apostolic succession: (in Christian thought) the uninterrupted transmission of spiritual authority from the Apostles through successive popes and bishops, taught by the Roman Catholic Church but denied by most Protestants. (Thanks, Google.)

**The Reformation (from Latin reformatio, literally “restoration, renewal”), also referred to as the Protestant Reformation and the European Reformation, was a schism from the Roman Catholic Church initiated by Martin Luther, and continued by John Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli, and other early Protestant Reformers in 16th century Europe.
~Wikipedia

***Conviction: a firmly held belief or opinion.

Am I Writing Erotica?

Erotica: Literature or art intended to arouse sexual desire.

Lately I’ve found myself writing poems that, I realize, could be classified as erotica.

The reason I say that is: Sexual arousal is a theme that runs through both of them.

And that got me thinking: Oh no.

The reason why is: I don’t want to be some E.L. James type.

I want to be better than that.

I’m not saying that I want to consider myself superior to E.L. James as a person. No one is “superior” to anyone else. We’re all fallible human beings doing the best we can with what we have.

What I am saying is: From a purely literary perspective, I want there to be more to my writing than there is to a novel like 50 Shades of Grey. I want the (potentially) arousing aspects of my writing to point to something more: to not just be arousal for the sake of arousal.

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While I write my poetry, I frequently find myself returning to a quote by Sharon Hodde Miller:

“…a woman’s breasts, hips, bottom, and lips all proclaim the glory of the Lord! Each womanly part honors Him.”

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What I’m trying to do is show how sexual feelings “proclaim the glory of the Lord!”

My protagonists, as a result of what they are feeling upon laying themselves bare or consenting to another’s touch, are undergoing an awakening. They are realizing that their reality is not as they thought it was and, thus, must choose how to respond.

Blindly

Not wanting to know what I will see, I close my eyes.

Blindly, I lay myself bare.

And I wonder: Is the scream trying to escape my mouth one of pleasure or pain?

A Fire In Her Heart

This night
She screams

In pleasure?
In pain?

And this night
A heart screams a word

“Run!”

On another note:

All art involving nudity or sexuality will be arousing to some extent because that is the nature of nudity and sexuality. If it does not arouse, it is bad art.

Asking a heterosexual man to not feel arousal at the sight of a woman’s naked body is like asking a person to not squint when they try and look directly at the sun.

At the sight of a woman’s body, a man’s willpower tends to melt away like a face that has seen the Ark of the Covenant…

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Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Fitting, since the Ark, like a woman’s body, is an enclosure for what is holy:

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?
~1 Corinthians 6:19

Which would explain the need for campaigns like Still Not Asking For It — the sight of a woman’s body can be too much for a man to handle.

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The Awesome Blogger Award

Thank you to Between the lines for nominating me for the Awesome Blogger Award.

About the award:

What is the Awesome Blogger Award?

This award was created by Miss Maggie over at Dreaming of Guatemala! And she says:

“This is an award for the absolutely wonderful writers all across the blogging world. They have beautiful blogs, are kind and lovely, and always find a way to add happiness and laughter to the lives of their readers. That is what truly defines an awesome blogger.”

Rules of this award:

• Thank the person who nominated you. Include the reason behind the award. Include the banner in your post.

• Tag it under #awesomebloggeraward in the Reader.

• Answer the questions your nominator gave you.

• Nominate at least 5 awesome bloggers.

• Give your nominees 10 new questions to answer.

• Let your nominees know that they’ve been nominated!

Between the lines’ questions, and my answers:

If every person would be a color, what color would you be?

Blue.

If you could choose a historical period to live in, what would be your choice?

America in the 1980s.

Your favorites 3 songs are…

They are:

What is your first memory?

The earliest I can remember is: Coming home from preschool one day and asking my parents when my 4th birthday would be.

If you could teleport yourself in any place in this world, what would it be your first choice?

Japan.

Did you ever have an imaginary friend?

Yes. A Terminator-esque killer robot called “Plan A.”

What is the color of your eyes?

Brown.

If you’d be a painter, what would it be your favorite theme to paint?

Forests. I would enjoy painting forests.

Your favorite ice cream flavor is…

Cookie dough.

Where do you find inspiration for your blog?

My fellow bloggers inspire me.

My 10 questions:

  1. What is one subject you want to write about, but haven’t yet?
    Or: What is one person, place, or thing, that you want to draw, but haven’t yet?
  2. If you could be any animal, what would you be?
  3. What is the last movie you watched?
  4. What is something that is underappreciated?
  5. Dog person? Cat person? Both? Neither?
  6. When was the last time you laughed, and why?
  7. What is the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?
  8. Would you go skydiving?
  9. What is one thing you are thankful for right now?
  10. If people could only know one thing about you, what would you want them to know?

I nominate:

All About Anime

Confessions Of A Reborn Girl

The Crazy Bag Lady

M&M Millennials

Iheartlife

The Emoji Movie: It’s Not All Bad

Every cloud has a silver lining.

Being a fan of Life is Strange, I’m a member of a Life is Strange fan group.

Recently, one of the members of that group brought something to my attention:

A blue-haired, skull-wearing character in The Emoji Movie (2017) bears a suspicious resemblance to a certain character…

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Ironic, considering that Chloe Price hates emoji:

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Also of interest is the character’s name: Jailbreak. She’s the “Rebel emoji.”

Chloe is also a rebel.

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My takeaway from this is: The creators of The Emoji Movie have good taste.

Plus, who knows? The resemblance between the two characters could cause someone to discover Life is Strange. And for this reason, this reason, and this reason, I’d say that’s a good thing.

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And yes, Chloe, I can put on some music now.

Melancholy

“Even when they explore the darkest depths of the soul or the most unsettling aspects of evil, artists give voice in a way to the universal desire for redemption.”
~Pope John Paul II — Letter to Artists

Sehnsucht: “Tender, wistful, and/or melancholic desire; yearning, longing.”

I’ve been feeling melancholic lately.

The reason why is: Once again, I find myself stuck in a rut.

My circumstances being what they are, my foreseeable future sees me continuing to work at a grocery store stocking shelves and pricing items and saving up my money for future endeavors.

On the one hand, I’m happy:

I’d spent months vacillating about whether or not to return to college. And, when I was recently made more aware of my financial situation earlier this month, that put an end to my indecisiveness. I wouldn’t be returning to college. At least, not for a long time.

On the other hand, I’m sad:

I see my family and friends going off and doing so many amazing things with their lives, and I can’t help but feel trapped.

I know I’m not the same person I was 4 years ago — before I went to college and before I made the decision to come home.

For example: Now I feel like I know what I want to do with my life: Be a screenwriter.

But it’s hard not to feel that I haven’t grown or, worse, regressed.

And that fear makes me think: As a Catholic, am I supposed to be melancholic? Is there a place for sadness in the life of a follower of Jesus?

After all: I’m a bringer of the Good News: “He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.'” (Mark 16:15)

How can I be sad?

sigh

I can be sad because I’m only human.

“‘You can’t go home again’ said Thomas Wolfe. Yet here I am.”
~Max Caulfield, Life is Strange

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“I’m somewhere
You’re somewhere
I’m nowhere
You’re nowhere”
~Angus & Julia Stone