Tag Archives: Caitlin Doughty

Good Chaos

14 Jul
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Caitlin Doughty, Yours Truly, Gordon White

My event in LA with Gordon White, Chaotic Good: Why We Need the Occult Now (More Than Ever), was a big success on many levels.
It sold out, so that was a pretty great marker of its success, financially. But also, it was a marker of the necessity of and longing for occult-related events.
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La société du spectacle

Beyond those basic levels, it was intense. The audience members were all just…vibing. There were powerful occultists there (Poke Runyon sat in the front row, jeez), and beginners, and skeptics (including our amazing moderator, Caitlin Doughty), and political folks and artists. Everyone was just listening, taking it all in, and during the Q&A expressing their own version or whatever resonated. It was a spell against loneliness if nothing else. Whatever happened content-wise, I knew that we’d done a good thing together in just being with each other, in gathering all these weirdos who have imaginations that are big enough to take on reality itself.

Byron Katie says “We talk to figure out what we want to say.” I agree. And sometimes, we even say what we want to say and want what we want. When I give public talks, sometimes ideas come from me that I didn’t know were there. What I want to say just appears.

And the work of refining a thought so that others can hear it and understand it is an act of agility, so I find myself (especially in Q&A) turning to my heart as I speak. What will I say that is understandable here? What will connect these people – who are giving me the honor of their silence and the negative space of their hearing – to this idea and to me?

It makes me a better person to speak publicly and answer questions, because I have to imagine what other people are like, what they feel, and what they think. Even though I’m speaking, we’re inhabiting each other.

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“I drink of my sisters and I ask for the ability to not hate those who hate me. Especially racist pieces of bleach-blonde shit like Laura Lizzie.”

Rachel True (from The Craft!) gave tarot readings, and tarot, beyond its more obvious powers, commands a listening-to. When you get a reading, you listen in a different way. The tarot has a conversation with your thoughts, and your embedded-ness in time.

Of course, the conversations after I got off the stage had their own lives too. One-on-one conversation is one of our most powerful tools. I always say conversation and sex are the same order of being: They are free; they can go in any direction; they may be happy or unhappy or exciting or boring; whatever the outcome, it doesn’t mean you won’t engage again with the same person; they’re different from person to person, and more. Chaotic good.

It reminds me of Rudolf Steiner’s stirring comment that “Conversation is the new Eucharist.” Body and blood and sacrament.

Sit with that, if you want. Let it ring out in you. Remember when you speak to another person, you’re encountering a completely unique nexus of universal forces.

Gordon talks about a bit of this on the new episode of Rune Soup, which you can/shouldlisten to here.

If you couldn’t attend the event not to worry, the entire thing is being transcribed into an ebook with new intros by Gordon and I.

Hopefully the book will be not only interesting, but make you feel like you’re at the event, in conversation.

A big part of my conversation now is happening through my Patreon page, which is linked to my new web series. Please do sign up on Patreon to support my work and livelihood, and to interact with me. Thank you, new pioneers.

Love,

CH

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The Little Death and the Big One, Too: Me + Death Expert Caitlin Doughty

19 Jan

mecLife starts with sex and ends with death, and the middle is basically just lots of thoughts about both. These are fundamental aspects of being human, yet serious considerations of either are too often left out of our politics, our revolutions, and even our most passionate efforts to recreate our world.

So, okay, I invited my friend, the death expert Caitlin Doughty, over to talk. Caitlin is a trailblazer in the death positive movement, a mortician, and author of Smoke Gets in Your Eyes & Other Lessons from the Crematory.

First we filmed a quick, fun video for her channel – Our 3 tips for how to have a better relationship with death and with sex in 2017.

But Caitlin and I wanted to keep going. So we had this longer and more in-depth discussion, which you can watch below. We talked about how we can use sex and death in our politics and activism, how to conceive of your own death, sexually radical thinkers like sex magician Paschal Beverly Randolph and utopianist Charles Fourier,some guy named Donald Trump, Darwin’s Worms, and more.

This video is part of my yearlong effort to radiate a sense action, excitement, and creativity in the world we live in now. This month, it culminates in my online course, Radical Undoing: Decolonize Your Mind with Sex, Science, the Occult, and Philosophy, which you can sign up for here!

Follow Caitlin on twitter, and buy her book. And also, expect more from us together in the future!

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