A few weeks ago I received this comment from “Becca” in response to a post from a year ago, talking about how Buffy and Harry Potter have reignited (pun intended) interest in paganism:
Just because you do not belong to the church of Satan does not disqualify you from practicing Satanic “practices.”
You may be laughing, but God is not.
Well. Where to begin?
David Adesnik of Oxblog has a thought-provoking post on Madonna’s decision to cancel tour dates in Israel due to a terrorist threat to her children. David wonders,
So why hasn’t Madonna bought into the anti-war, pro-Palestinian Hollywood consensus? I don’t really know, but one has to wonder whether her intense attachment to the Jewish mystical tradition known as Kabbala has something to do with it. On the other hand, some (so-called) experts are suggesting that rabbinicial condemnations of Kabbala were responsible for the cancelled tour stop. […]
I’m not sure what it means to “practice” Kabbala. I haven’t studied it much, but at least in the mainstream, there is no such thing as Kabbalistic Judaism.
Forgive my presumption if you already knew this, David, but there is a long tradition of Christians and occultists who used Kabbalah, although not for reasons approved of by traditional Jewish scholars.
If you’ve ever wanted to delve into the theosophical and mythical underpinnings of The Wizard of Oz, well you’ve come to the right place.
Thanks to Samizdata‘s Johnathan for passing along this article about the rise of interest in Paganism in Britain thanks to Buffy and Harry. It also includes the requisite moans about “celebrating sorcery” and “evil” from church officials, and of course, calls to regulate TV content.
The trend has worried some of the Protestant church’s more traditional elements. “The rise of interest in Paganism is damaging because it normalizes spiritual evil by presenting it as mere fantasy and fiction,” said Reverend Joel Edwards of the Evangelical Alliance, a grouping of some one million UK Christians.
“The Evangelical Alliance calls on government and TV regulatory bodies to monitor programs which promote or glamorize Pagan issues,” he told Reuters.
More intolerant words would be hard to imagine.
Apologies for not keeping up with blogging. I’ve been suffering a cold the last few days and have been singularly uninspired to post.
Here’s something that readers with a metaphysical bent (or not) may find interesting. Christopher Hyatt, well-known among occulty types for books on magic and Tantra, has written a “psychological profile” of George W. Bush and Saddam Hussein. It’s based on body language and “non-verbal and expressive behavior”. Dr. Hyatt starts the analysis thusly:
If I were a betting man and George Bush and Saddam Hussein entered the ring, I would give you 4-1 odds that George would beat the pants off Saddam.
Dr. Hyatt goes on to make what I believe are some remarkable astute and prescient observations about both men’s attitudes and behaviors:
George doesn’t like holding back how he really feels, but he has been well trained as a politician. Because of this conflict, he appears to some less intelligent than he really is. Unlike Clinton, it would be more obvious if George boldly lied about his personal life on National television. He has a more difficult time controlling his involuntary facial expressions than most public figures.
In our society, verbal skills are regarded as a sign of intelligence when, in fact, many people can be very expressive and glib without having insight, structure or factually-based arguments. In fact, George was at a handicap relative to presidential candidate Al Gore, but George is more credible than Al, regardless of Gore’s superior ability with language and rhetoric.
Saddam is rigid. This makes him vulnerable. He will often stick to a plan even after it has been proven wrong. Once he has made a decision, any change will be perceived by him as a sign of weakness. Once insulted, whether real or imaginary, it is very unlikely that he will forgive you;assuming, of course, that you survive.
A strong and consistent stance with little waffling will bring [Saddam] to his knees. However, it is important not to feed him with emotional diatribes. He thrives on attention whether negative or positive. In fact, he prefers negative attention as it confirms his view of himself as a persecuted mini-messiah.
Saddam cares for no one. His goal is pure power, power for its own sake. He has few if any moral principles and, while shaking your hand and smiling, he could easily shoot you in the back.
The whole thing is worth a read.