Paganistan: Notes from the Secret Commonwealth

In Which One Midwest Man-in-Black Confers, Converses & Otherwise Hob-Nobs with his Fellow Hob-Men (& -Women) Concerning the Sundry Ways of the Famed but Ill-Starred Tribe of Witches.

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If I Can't Swing My Dick, I Don't Want to Be Part of Your Religion

Modeling Humility 


I've had some pretty strange dreams in my time, but this has got to have been one of the strangest.

I'm not sure what kind of congregation I'm in, but it must be something staid like Episcopalian; most of the guys around me are wearing suits. That makes what happens next even more bizarre.

We rise to sing a hymn. As we begin, all of the men around me unzip and pull their dicks out.

(I must be visiting the congregation, because I don't really know what's going on. Nevertheless, I follow along with the rest.)

At one point—during the chorus, I'm guessing—we all swing our dicks to the right. During the next chorus, we swing to the left. So it goes through the entire hymn, alternately. The young guy on my left is doing it; so is the man standing in the pew in front of me, and the older one to my right. We're all doing it. Me, I swing along with the rest.

The collective tone of this bizarre act of Episcopal fertility worship—is it an act of blessing?—is that of mild amusement, but there's something serious about it as well, something ritual. As the hymn concludes, we all shake off, as if at the end of a piss, and re-trouser. Presumably, the service then continues. I don't know for sure, because I always wake up at this point.

I've had this dream several times now. I draw three conclusions.

Conclusion the First: In religion, as in life generally, we need to make a place for men and maleness. (In this, the New Paganisms have mostly been wise.) Maleness can be a blessing, if we let it.

Conclusion the Second: Sexuality ritualized is sexuality made sacred. It's the unsacred kind that's dangerous.

Conclusion the Third: To misquote Emma Goldman, if I can't swing my dick, I don't want to be part of your religion.

A strange dream: strange, and sacred.

I sure wish I could remember what hymn we were singing.


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Poet, scholar and storyteller Steven Posch was raised in the hardwood forests of western Pennsylvania by white-tailed deer. (That's the story, anyway.) He emigrated to Paganistan in 1979 and by sheer dint of personality has become one of Lake Country's foremost men-in-black. He is current keeper of the Minnesota Ooser.


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