Dec 21, 2008
It never ceases to amaze me, when I do finally pull off an all-night vigil, how different the world seems when the sun really does come up in the morning.

Happy Solstice, everyone.


Dec 12, 2008
What do you do when you've fucked up?

Doing wrong isn't a very popular topic in Pagan circles; I have to agree with Brendan Myers when he says that all too often, we gloss over the idea of what is and isn't right and we end up with a morality that doesn't have anything to say about our everyday lives.

I pretty well bombed a presentation yesterday in class, and it was my fault. Well, partly -- the professor was pathetically unprepared to teach the class she was supposed to be teaching, and was using someone else's projects as assignments, and did a piss poor job of explaining her expectations and offering support to us as we worked. But because the professor was so unprepared, I let my standards slide farther and farther, and by the time the project was over yesterday I knew that I could have made it a lot better without a lot more work, but I didn't.

One of the things I've always held as a virtue is doing my best possible work. Even when I was working at my horrible soul-sucking job, I was better at it than a lot of people there because it was wrong to me to do a bad job just because I disliked the work. And I've never slacked off on schoolwork this much before, so it was a little shattering when someone asked a question that I was completely unprepared to answer.

My other problem here is that I have very little faith in my own ability to determine responsibility for these sorts of things; I know I have high standards for myself, but are they unrealistic? Should I cut myself some slack because it was a group project, and I probably did more work than anyone else in the group and it still wasn't up to my standards? Should I cut myself some slack because it's my first semester of grad school and I've spent the whole term fighting with my foot injury and the weird wavering boundaries of depression on top of it? Probably. But it was honestly a little bit of a relief to take responsibility for the part of it that I am undeniably responsible for: I knew there was more work to be done, and I chose not to do it. I did wrong.

I made offerings last night in atonement (and who is the God of Library Students, after all?), and now I'm doing what I can to make it better -- that class is over and done with, and there's nothing I can do about that, but I still have one more paper to write, and at least I can feel good about that one.

What do you do when you've done wrong?

(happy) winter

Dec 3, 2008
I have this problem where the longer I go without posting the more I feel like the next post I make has to be really profound to make up for the gap. I'm trying to get over that. This is not profound at all.

I've been joking with people that I don't want winter to start, I feel like I have PTSD from last year (104.5 inches of snow, breaking a local record of some decades, not to mention a few delightful days of blizzards and/or freezing rain). It's getting less of a joke as the snow keeps falling, especially as this year I've quit my horrible job but I have finals stress to deal with instead. Oh, and thanks to the surgeon not warning me ahead of time what my followup surgery would entail, I'm back on crutches for a week. Yep, crutches. In the snow. help.

Which I think is why I was struck by a quote from a Vodou priest that The Wild Hunt posted a couple days ago:

This year, they spent what they could to honor the dead, while still trying to support the living, Josue said. 'I don't think the Gede [the spirits of the dead] will be offended,' Josue said. 'They will be concerned about the condition of the world, because they have a lot of work to do now.'"

Which I think gets at why I don't like the religion-only-in-a-crisis mode that I (and I think a lot of other casual-religious folks) was brought up with: if you only turn to your gods when you need them, you feel like you need to do a lot of work to earn that help, at a time when that work is hard/expensive/impossible; but if you've been keeping up the relationship all along, you just all pitch in together and pull through. Rather like humans do. All of which is to say that while the snow is still mildly traumatic, I'm in a much better place this winter than I was last winter.

Now if only I could walk.