Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Dave Sim's blogandmail #212 (April 11th, 2007)


Fifteen Impossible Things to Believe Before Breakfast That Make You a Good Feminist

1. A mother who works a full-time job and delegates to strangers the raising of her children eight hours a day, five days a week does just as good a job as a mother who hand-rears her children full time.

2. It makes great sense for the government to pay 10 to 15,000 dollars a year to fund a daycare space for a child so its mother - who pays perhaps 2,000 dollars in taxes - can be a contributing member of society.

3. A woman's doctor has more of a valid claim to participate in the decision to abort a fetus than does the father of that fetus.

4. So long as a woman makes a decision after consulting with her doctor, she is incapable of making an unethical choice.

5. A car with two steering wheels, two gas pedals and two brakes drives more efficiently than a car with one steering wheel, one gas pedal and one brake which is why marriage should always be an equal partnership.

6. It is absolutely necessary for women to be allowed to join or participate fully in any gathering place for men, just as it is absolutely necessary that there be women only environments from which men are excluded.

7. Because it involves taking jobs away from men and giving them to women, affirmative action makes for a fairer and more just society.

8. It is important to have lower physical standards for women firepersons and women policepersons so that, one day, half of all firepersons and policepersons will be women, thus more effectively protecting the safety of the public.

9. Affirmative action at colleges and universities needs to be maintained now that more women than men are being enrolled, in order to keep from giving men an unfair advantage academically.

10. Having ensured that there is no environment for men where women don't belong (see no.6) it is important to have zero tolerance of any expression or action which any woman might regard as sexist to ensure greater freedom for everyone.

11. Only in a society which maintains a level of 95% of alimony and child support being paid by men to women can men and women be considered as equals.

12. An airline stewardess who earned $20,000 a year at the time that she married a baseball player earning $6 million a year is entitled, in the event of a divorce, to $3 million for each year of the marriage and probably more.

13. A man's opinions on how to rear and/or raise a child are invalid because he is not the child's mother. However, his financial obligation is greater because no woman gets pregnant by herself.

14. Disagreeing with any of these statements makes you anti-woman and/or a misogynist.

15. Legislature Seats must be allocated to women and women must be allowed to bypass the democratic winnowing process in order to guarantee female representation and, thereby, make democracy fairer.




And, obviously, up until 1996 that was exactly who I was, so you have an inadvertent "magnifier" effect at work. I smoke a joint, listen to the White Album or whatever I was listening to at the time and write and draw a story that aligns with that sensibility. What would the White Album be like if it was a comic book? Music and lyrics that Lennon and McCartney had written a decade before (while under the influence of Chuck Berry and others and the music and lyrics he and they had written a decade before that) compels me to write and draw something that (whatever else it is) is explicitly Not God and Not Scripturally based. Ten years after I write and draw it, some fan artist gets seriously hooked on what I'm doing and, in turn, becomes devoted to writing and drawing that which (whatever else it may be) is explicitly Not God and Not Scripturally based. In writing about a magic magnifier, I also align myself with the core of magical theory: Invoke Often. If I write about a character that magnifies magical properties in proximity to himself, maybe that will make me a magical magnifier in my own context. Changing metaphor into reality: another core element of magical theory. Even a devoted God-fearing man like Jeff Seiler calls his fictional publishing company "Effing Magnifier" which is based in a response which he had to encountering me in person so, hey, mission accomplished with one reader, anyway. If you want to see a thing badly enough you will see it even if it isn't there: another core element of magical theory. "Cerebus isn't the magnifier, Dave is". Another core element of magical theory: Make use of the rube's own urge toward the otherworldly and let him do all the hard work himself in convincing himself.

In my own case, I like to think that it was inadvertent misidentification on Jeff's part. I'm not an Effing Magnifier, but I do have a coherent worldview as against the major feminist delusion that the world is supporting that has no basis in reality (see "Make use of the rube's own urge toward…"). To describe that as an "Effing Magnifier" is to try to incite self-doubt—I'm not actually God-fearing, I'm still working the other side of the street—or to try to incite self-doubt on the extra-conscious level that I'm dealing with 90% of the time: super-reality, over-arching reality, the realm of spirit or whatever you want to call it. All's fair in love and war. Did Jeff do that intentionally and consciously? No, I don't think so. Was it done intentionally and consciously through Jeff? I would suspect so.

I'm pretty confident that I'm not working the other side of the street but there's no way of refuting the accusation since it has to do with larger realities that I can't suddenly yank out of their context and wave in people's faces. It's just another accusation, it's just more name-calling (and, I assume, an attempt to make me doubt Jeff's sincerity). I'm not evil and I'm not a misogynist and I'm not an effing magnifier but there's no way of refuting that in a world turned upside down. My prayer times are my top priority and that's all I can really do in a physical context to reinforce who and what I believe myself to be in the hopes that that IS who and what I am. Speaking of which, it's noon right now so…PRAYER TIME!...

See? Prayer is a greater priority for me than discussing magic.

Is it connected to the "Something Fell" motif?

Let me answer the question at an oblique angle: every time I do the ritual ablutions before prayer—washing both hands up to the elbow, right one first, then washing the face, then inhaling water into the nostrils and daubing it inside the ears, rinsing out the mouth and then wetting the scalp and then washing the feet (right one first)—I'm always reminded of John 13:8 to 10 where the Johannine Jesus at the Last Supper announces his intention to wash the feet of his disciples and Peter protests (word-for-word translation from the Common Greek) "Not not you should wash of me the feet into the age." Double negatives like "not not" in traditional translations are usually turned into single negatives, thus inverting the meaning, in this case, "You should wash of me the feet into the age." The "into the age" part is omitted in traditional translations, I suspect because the entrenched priesthood didn't know what it meant and if they didn't know what something meant in the Gospels they omitted it in translation nine times out of ten or changed it into something that matched their almost exclusively Pauline presuppositions about who and what the Synoptic and Johannine Jesus were.

And the Johannine Jesus answered "If ever not I should wash you, not you are having part with me." To which Peter replies (suitably chastened) "Lord, not the feet of me only but also the hands and the head." To which the Johannine Jesus replies: "The ___ having been bathed not is having need if not the feet to get washed, but he is clean whole; and you (plural) clean you (plural) are, but not all." You can compare that to traditional translations to see exactly how oversimplified the Church fathers made it. Examine it as closely as you can and try to discern the inner meaning—particularly the "if not" part which seems to me the cornerstone of the mystery. What does "if not" usually mean? What does it do to the sentence if you take it out? What does it do to the sentence if you put it back in?

I think, basically, Peter won his point in the long term—we are a massive reclamation job—and when Angel Gabriel revealed the ablution rituals to Muhammad some six hundred years later, the head and hands were specifically included.

I point this out not to tax your patience (although I'm sure I'm doing that) but only to illustrate that there are Great Mysteries in Scripture in which to involve yourself and that discussions of magic—particularly fictionalized magic like my invention of "something fell"—I believe issue from the sensibility that has the urge toward those Mysteries which has become detrimentally misdirected by those who have allowed themselves to become alienated from scripture by the entrenched priesthood whose spiritual predecessors mutilated it in the first place.

But, since 99% of you have been so thoroughly "snookered" by the demonically possessed among the entrenched priesthood that you find any reference to Scripture abhorrent and who want to pass their time, instead, in discussing fictionalized magic:

"Something fell."

This is along the lines of referential thinking (in psychiatric terms) and external influence (in spiritual terms). There are times when "something fell" and that's all that happened. Something fell.

However, there are also times when it serves as a signal of an imminent step down on the ladder at minimum and Lucifer's fall from heaven at maximum. You have attained to a certain "height" spiritually over a period of time and then you hear "crash" and if you are inclined in the direction of thinking that everything happens for a reason, every event is a consequence of all previous events (you don't have to be religious to think that way: Woody Allen, for one, believes that "nothing happens without a reason") you think, "Something fell" and it has a level of significance attached to it. You "rewind tape" (if you're wise you do, anyway, in my opinion) to examine what you were saying or thinking at the moment the event took place in order to assess if you contributed to the "falling" or engineered it however inadvertently. It might be a form of compromise you seriously considered or a rearrangement of priorities that leads unbeknownst to your conscious mind —or would lead, without the warning—in disadvantageous directions. What fell can be a pertinent question (but not, I don't think, as pertinent a question as "What was I thinking or saying or doing just before something fell?") as can why did it fall, where did it fall to, where did it fall from.

In the case of Cerebus (see folks, I TOLD you we were going to talk about Cerebus!) it was a matter of his larger nature participating in a larger context than he could even begin to perceive partly and, perhaps, mostly because of his willful ignorance of anything not directly applicable to himself (getting all the gold, getting drunk, getting Jaka). I used storytelling tricks to emphasize "something fell" in a way that Cerebus didn't directly experience it—illustrating both its importance and his profound ignorance of its importance simultaneously. It's the combination of importance and profound ignorance of importance that appeals to the atheistic mind, I think (I think this is at least the fifth time you've asked me about "something fell"). It's genuinely horrific in a way that, say, gory horror films aren't. Gory horror films are just about physical pain, death and bleeding which scares the cupcakes out of you but which is largely if not completely meaningless to your soul. What if there are things I'm not aware of that are exactly like giant wet footprints coming out of the uninhabitable swamp? What if whatever it is that I don't know about is coming to get me? That'll scare the cupcakes out of you and your soul.

Put another way: "Something fell" is an evasion. "Something is fallen" is less evasive. "Someone is falling" is less evasive. "I'm that someone" is pretty much on the money. Like the TV ad "I've fallen and I can't get up." Atheists found that hilarious and it became a touchstone punch-line in stand-up comedy for a year or so but then atheists generally find humor in things that turn their higher natures—and sometimes themselves—either literally or metaphorically grey-headed.

Also, why is this important concept only directly referenced in a short story that is not part of the Cerebus novel proper?

Good question!

Tomorrow: Hopefully: Good Answer!

There's MORE for you




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