Sunday, September 7, 2008


The name is significant. Ironically, many of my first experiences with the civilian Pagan community lacked civility. Mostly would be witch kings warlords. When I first discovered the Pagan network on the web I used my real name for my screen name. It became a target for the ego snipers. You can see it coming, they can't help but smile.

"So... Um... why is your screen name Merlin? Why's up with that? Are you a Wizard or something?"

The smile always wains when I show them my drivers license, they don't know what to do. They just blink a lot. That means it's my turn to smile. I try not too.

So that's my name. But So what! Does that make me what or who I am? Or more? Does it compensate for anything? Does it make me valid or authentic? Does the name give me magical powers? No. Trust me it does not.

Later that same person challenged me to explain or label myself and thereby what it is I do , with ONE word. I think the idea was to limit my vocabulary and provoke title like High Priest, Magician or Wizard rather than an honest response like servant.

It only took a moment to consult my adviser and we cleverly smashed two words together. WitchDoctor. Bifurcated, these two words reflect my craft perfectly. The Doctor is an operative title. If you get a snake bite, there is a treatment. A certain plant you can chew, in doing so the enzymes in your saliva break down the whatever and do something to the plant and when it's applied to the wound it limits the effects of the toxin. Doctor.

But the Witch is speculative, and knows the spell. The ancient words spoken in a hush as the plant is chewed, the spell, the words within your spit, stirred by the vibration of your will, your mouth the living Cauldron. The Witch knows that when that snake coils up, he coils to the right. So when you rub in the pasty cud, you rub it in the opposite way, you uncoil the snake, and it's poison.

The WitchDoctor is both operative and spectulative, the divine union of these two ways.

Wisdom is the proper application of knowledge. Magic is the result.


Fr. V. L. said...

Oh, fricking hell, you used bifurcated- forever burned into my mind as Claudia's "bisexual- furry cat."

I understand your pain brother. One of my first online exposure was to kick everyone ass on my knowledge of Buddhism. It was hella years ago, my screen name was, "gothgayboy." dosen't look too Buddhist, but I had recently fled the monastery. :)

Keep up the good fight!

LVX! In Fraternal Love,

Fr. Errin (Vita Luche)

Jason Miller, said...

Simply a fantastic post.