Coming soon: a new web address for this blog!

[[[At the end of November I'll be migrating this blog to a new address, which will be:]]]

13 February 2015

earthly - two points on stasis

1. The Masculine Earth

I grew up in the verdant northeast, in a place I can only describe as womb-like. Even the barren winter trees and thick blankets of snow couldn't hide the lushness of the land. In winter, it was a barren womb, but womb nonetheless.

Characterizations of the earth as feminine had resonated naturally, but I didn't know why. It seemed a random choice, but I went with it. I could imagine it, although it was a hollow, vague imagination, since I didn't really know what 'feminine' felt like. When I tried imagining the earth as masculine, or as nongendered, it didn't work in my head at all.

When I came to the Sonoran Desert - lush in it's own way - I learned. The presence of this place is powerful, as powerful as the forests of my birthplace, but distinctly masculine.

Tangent: I've sometimes wondered, as a genderqueer person who doesn't feel any strong attachment to any gender of my own whether I didn't feel gender because it wasn't there (am I agendered? I've wondered), or because my internal detection mechanism is wonky (maybe I just can't tell what gender is supposed to feel like, but it's there somewhere). When I felt the masculinity of this place, it took me some time to identify it as masculinity. The feeling was foreign. I don't remember when it happened, but at some point I was able to look back and compare this masculine place with my feminine birthplace, and feel the femininity by contrast. It makes me wonder if my gender detector is working (now, anyway), and I really am just floating along, unattached, in the gender spectrum.

It's an appropriate tangent, after all: our bodies are of the earth, are earth metaphorically and perhaps literally. Recognizing the flexibility of earth and the variations of earth energy is crucial in our understanding of ourselves. As humans, we tend to think of things as unchanging; we assign labels quickly and we don't like to shift labels once we've attached them. But we're not static; earth is not static.

2. Attachments

'Attachments are the root of all suffering,' said one of my facebook friends, and Buddha.

This may be true. We can come to depend on our attachments in ways that cripple our happiness. This is a well-worn maxim, no need to expound.

We have a weird relationship with things in American culture. We are, as a culture, too attached to our things. And to our labels. We know this about ourselves, and there's a sizable movement of people trying to detach themselves from all their things. Some even try to detach their labels.

'All things in moderation,' said my dad, and Aristotle.
Tangent: 'Even moderation in moderation' said I. But that's not helpful to my point right now, so nevermind that.

Because attachment is also the root of all joy.

One of the major symptoms of depressive disorders is a feeling of detachment.
Loneliness feels like shit.

Would parenting be joyful if you had no attachment to your child?
I see my point has been made. No further examples necessary.

Attachment is an earthly thing; it is tangible, it holds things together, holds things in place, makes things stable. When we eschew all attachments, we sever our earthiness to some degree. It allows us the labels our psyches need.

1 + 2 = 3. We just have to remember that labels can be changed. Attachments can be adjusted or even let go. Earth varies; we are not static.


This post was prompted by and will be posted at The Pagan Experience, which asked about Earth this last week. 

No comments:

Post a Comment