I love the current memes that combine a photo of a gorgeous white-haired woman with text celebrating older women. These memes convey an important message.
But there's a serious problem: with rare exceptions, every photo is obviously someone who was blonde and fair skinned when she was younger. This gives the hurtful and disempowering message that only blondes can be wise, empowered, gorgeous elders.
We're all beautiful, inside and out. We're each a goddess with wisdom and power.
Being overweight in a society which reveres skeletons as fashionable, I’ve learned to turn a blind eye and deaf ear; assess the strength of furniture; determine the width and depth of space and deflect looks of disgust all because I dare to be outside the norm. Contrary to what many people believe, I used to be slim, athletic and well within societal norms. As a freshman in high school, I was on the gymnastics team and at my lowest weight of about 115 pounds. I was also miserable. I hurt all the time and felt conspicuous with my bones jutting out. Even at that low of a weight I was never a size zero like one of my sisters but size twelve is certainly respectable.
Life happens and weight seemed to find me. Low income, poor nutrition and many mistakes along the way piled on weight to my 5’4” frame. I make no excuses as I am responsible for my situation and myself. I’m overweight not stupid. Life happens and this is how I am right now in this moment. I can’t wave my magic wand and become 120 pounds again. Honestly I don’t know that I ever want to be that thin again. I don’t believe it was healthy for me. However, I would like to be thinner than I am now.
Continuing my story of my personal journey, I found Red Rock Park to be a healing place. Red Rock Park near Las Vegas, Nevada, is a popular hiking, rock climbing, and picnicking destination where one can view petroglyphs. I often meditated in a shallow cave I named the Yoda Hole. The trailhead to the rock climbing area with many small caves is on the first overlook of the scenic road in the park.
The image that accompanies this post is a photo of the the Yoda Hole. It was pristine when I used to visit it for healing in the 90s, but had been defaced with graffiti at the time I took this picture. The circular design in the middle of the cave roof is natural, and I liked to position my head under it when I meditated.
A quote from my memoir:
“When my feet touched the red rock I felt power go through me. It was like plugging into a socket. My energy level skyrocketed, and I found my pace quickening. I walked right out onto the promontory of calico stone and sat down, my hands caressing the deep red stone. At the same time that I realized this was the first stirring of psychic power I had felt in a long time, and I reveled in the feel of the power coursing through me from the rock, I also wondered what it was in the rock that set it apart and made it powerful. Was the red color from iron, like rust? If so, was what I felt as magical power actually a magnetic field?"
The red color is, in fact, from iron. Meditating in the Yoda Hole and hiking in the park improved my health. I became able to sense other minds again, including the gods. The gray lifted from me, and there was color in the world again.
This and my previous essay explain how we can better understand the dangers and benefits of power by combining both secular and esoteric traditions. Part one explored power’s nature, and why power is both necessary and often destructively addictive. It also laid the foundation for an esoteric understanding of power by developing a model of thought forms.I made the case for their reality once views shared widely within the Pagan community are taken seriously.This present essay explores Power as a thought form deeply destructive to human well-being – and what we can do about it.