This week a relative of mine posted the following meme in an effort to…I dunno…be funny, I suppose. It quickly turned not humorous even as some other relatives “liked” the meme in silence. I was disheartened at first that someone who I share family ties with and love would post something hateful, judgmental, ignorant, and wrong. Then, even as I commented back and forth with this relative, began to feel my anger and annoyance dissipate and be replaced by something else – Pity.
Let me first point out that this meme is made and shared from a point of ignorance. Body modifications are PRICEY to say the least. It isn’t cheap to get tattoos, piercings, branding, scarification, implants, etc. To assume that someone who has extensive pieces like the person in this meme (photo’d is Pauly Unstoppable now known as Farrah Flawless) doesn’t have money or a job and is living off the government or blames anyone for that matter is simply ignorance. The people I know of that are heavily tatted, pierced, and more all have well-paying jobs or are self-employed. They know they could not get a gig working a conventional job, but the thing is, they don’t want a conventional job or life! They look unconventional because that is what they are!
More than Just Tattoos & Piercings
Body Modification: is the deliberate altering of the human anatomy or human physical appearance. This can include, and is not limited to – piercing, tattoos, plastic surgery, hair cuts, circumcision, and shaving. For more on that point, check out this article Busting Bad Memes which explains who Pauly is and how the work force of the U.S. is changing even as memes like this are still ignorantly shared.
I said before that as I commented back and forth with my relative that I stopped being angry with him and began to pity him, and those like him. By creating a judgement about people based on their appearance, they will never know some of the people I know and love. They create a barrier and prevent themselves from ever experiencing meeting and loving someone absolutely amazing.
When I think of the people in my life who have body modifications, I don’t just think of the people themselves; I think of my experiences that I’ve had with them, how I’ve grown, what I’ve learned.
Depending on how you view life, one could say that I am who I am based on the experiences I’ve had and lessons I’ve learned from people like this.
Would I be here now, with Seer&Sundry if it weren’t for Damon with his quirky tattoos and facial piercings? No, definitely not.
Would I be as brave and sarcastically humorous as I am if it weren’t for friends like Kat with her septum piercing and Chase The Morning chest tat or Fen whose tats cover her from her wildly dyed and cut hair to her pretty lil toes along with her implants and love of all things body mod? Nope.
I can’t even say how I would feel about the amazing state of Alaska that I live in and the people in it without my darling friend Roy with his Gandalf beard, septum spike, and motorcycle enthusiasm.
Yet here I am. I don’t have any tattoos. My body doesn’t hold piercings so all I have are 2 holes, one in each earlobe, that close up if I take earrings out and don’t put them back in for a day or two.
People who judge others on looks and disdain those with body modifications probably look kindly on me and yet will miss out on who I am and who I love because they would only remark against people in my life that look unconventional.
I pity them that they will not know the love I have known.
Obstacles of Discrimination Should Be Broken Down
The tarot card Judgement is one often shown as an angel calling the dead up from their graves.
This card, in a reading, suggests that the reader or querent has had a recent epiphany or an ‘awakening’ where they have come to a realization that they need to live their life in a different way and need to be true to themselves and their needs.
I think of this card now in two ways.
First, for myself. When I saw the meme my relative posted I was upset but initially shied away from saying anything that might stir the waters. However, it felt wrong not to say anything, not to point out the ignorance and prejudice that the meme portrayed.
Then I shied away from the initial idea of blogging about this matter. Should I air an issue I have with a family member? What does this have to do with living a magickal life?
Just as I had decided to let it go and not talk about it furthur, I clicked on an article by Paul Jarvis The Motivating and Scary Allure of Expressing Yourself in Your Work which discusses the idea that while drawing a line in the sand might be scary, it also leaves you with your tribe – which I find pretty damn magickal. Second, I think of this card in regards to my relative and those who judge against others based on them being different in some way.
It is my hope that the energy of this card will go out to them, touch them and give them an “epiphany” in regards to how they see others and themselves. May they understand the Universal Truth that is taught in many faiths and religions – we are all the same, children of the Divine, and we need to love one another no matter how we look on the outside. Thank you to those friends of mine who are splendidly adorned and modified AND to my friends whose skin is bare of unconventional markings but who have open and loving hearts for all. Bless You!
After writing this blog and getting some amazing pics from friends, I read THIS TOTES AWESOME POST by the Gorgeous Leonie Dawson who talks about drawing a line in the sand as an entrepreneur and that, yes it can be risky but it is so important to work with people that are respectful even when they do or don’t agree with your view point. I agree completely and this post along with the encouragement of my beloved friends gave me the balls to post this blog even when I knew the convo was controversial.