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“Lights” is the newest music video from the phenomenally popular South Korean K-pop group, BTS. Its main theme is the question “What is love?” to which there is a response: “your Light lights the way for me . . . no matter how far apart we are.” If you haven’t heard of BTS you are probably over 25. Please scroll to the bottom for more background on who they are. 

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L-R: V/Kim Tae-hyung, Suga/Min Joon-gi, Jin/Kim Seok-jin, RM/Kim Nam-joon, JHope/Jung Ho-seok. Bottom: JK/Jungkook/Jeon Jeong-Guk, Jimin/Park Ji-min.

In addition to expressing their extraordinary talents, highly developed skills, and social consciousness, their works are filled with heart-felt messages mixed with complex symbolism that I appreciate based on my over 50 years as a Jungian-based tarot reader and symbol interpreter. 

As others have noted there are so many levels of meaning to the song and video “Lights.” If you can’t see the English subtitles in the video, be sure to turn on CC (closed caption). Please watch.

Whether consciously intended or not, the movie theatre depicts Plato’s Allegory of the Cave. Only instead of viewing reflections on the wall we have the modern analogy of viewing a film being projected. UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_5c41This leads to the question: What is Reality? Plato said we are limited to perceiving existence through our senses, which can easily be misled.

The Allegory of the Cave

In Plato’s allegory, prisoners are chained in a cave so they only see images projected on a wall formed by statues moved in front of a fire, and they hear only echos from sounds made by those moving the statues. They think these illusions are reality. One of the prisoners escapes and, coming out of the cave, first perceives reality as shadows, then as reflections in a pool, then stars and moon, and finally the sun. This is the role of the philosopher who must subsequently return to the cave to free the other prisoners. Unfortunately, as his eyes are now accustomed to the sun, the philosopher can’t see in the dim light of the cave, so the other prisoners think his explanation of the true reality is crazy and kill him. This video presents a more hopeful view of humanity connected through sound and light internalized.

In the movie video, the youngest BTS member, JK/Jungkook goes to the theatre where he finds himself alone. Others arrive in the lobby but on the way to the screening room seem caught in a time freeze. Jin (the oldest member of BTS) is the only one who can walk through this frozen timescape. He seems, like Plato, aware of some overriding reality and may be a stand-in for the Philosopher-King, Bang Si-hyuk, head of their management company. V looks for a way into the theatre which he finds only when Jimin shows the way through a wall which opens into a ray of light. In the theatre, JK turns and looks into the light of the projector. He leaves the theatre but outside he is immediately frozen in place—unable, perhaps, to grasp the exterior light of reality. V joins him and is likewise frozen. Cut to JK asleep in the theatre with the other members where Jin wakes him. Outside again, Jimin “walk[s] forward without fear,” knocking both V and JK awake. The boys in the theatre watch this scene on the screen. Later we see all but one of the boys lying in a circle in a parking lot. Only one of the members, Suga/Min Yoongi, is “sleepless,” separate from the others where he realizes that the lights and connections are not lies, “They made me stronger.” As his eyes adjust to a greater reality he sees past the shadows, to the stars. (Are these Plato’s steps to the sun’s “reality”consciousness or are they the ‘light bombs’ waved by fans in concerts?) All the members return to the theatre to watch the film that now shows them running outside in the parking lot lit by street lamps (a new light in the darkness). It seems that even when they close their eyes they can see the light that is the true light connecting them. Jungkook, who initially entered the theatre alone, could represent the ‘personal us’ who must be “woke” to the reality not only of Plato’s starlight and eventually the sun, but, heartened by RM, to the sustaining connection with others.

Other Levels of Meaning

1. What ARMY means to BTS. On its surface this is an uplifting love song by BTS to their millions of fans, known by the initials A.R.M.Y., in deep appreciation for their love and making it all happen. BTS acknowledges, with every award and in their social media commentaries, that their achievements are due primarily to ARMY. “No matter how far apart we are, your light shines on me. . . . We are connected.” Even when the members of BTS are ill or tired, they can continue to grow and perform for the sake of ARMY.

2. What BTS means to their fans, ARMY. Many of the song’s lyrics seem taken directly from comments by fans, quoted by BTS members as what has touched them most: “I feel sick [of it/reality], helpless right now. . . [Then] I hear your voice.” “When I close my eyes, in the darkness your light lights the way for me.” In the song, JHope seems to speak the words of those deeply affected by BTS: “I want to face my loneliness and color my reality, losing and gaining, pursuing something every day.” Fans are heartened by BTS’s reaction to bullying, mistakes, stress, social inequality: “I believe things will change. No one is perfect. . . . Even this moment has its own meaning . . . we are connected by sound.” One of the founding principles of the group was that the youth of today need “a hero who can lend them a shoulder to lean on.”

3. What each of the boys mean to each other. As the person singing changes (watch the lyrics video to see who is singing what), I hear the words as a conversation in which they voice projected concerns about their future (eventual disbanding as they face required military service) as well as reassurances that they will always be connected to each other no matter how far apart. Will this phase of their life seem like a dream later on? How do their BTS personas fit in relation to both an earlier and later life of each of them? Their leader, RM walks toward the inside light, “I can see there’s light inside that will overcome even the future. . . . Everyday take a step to grow up.” He seems to show the way through future crises (spilled popcorn and movie ticket confetti). 

With these three items we see BTS, ARMY and the members of BTS all connected by sound (matter) transmuted to a psycho-spiritual light for them to follow through the darkness (the unknown, sadness, depression, etc.). These themes apply equally to each of us: what keeps us moving ahead despite social constrictions, mistakes and troubled emotions? What do we gain from our inner journeys and reflections?

The Maknae

4. What the Maknae (youngest members) mean to each other: L-R: Park Jimin, Kim Taehyung, Jeon Jungkook.

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In the music video they are presented as a triad with Jimin as a catalytic particle, opening hidden doorways and waking Jungkook back into time/space. In countless fan videos the “skinship” (hugging, touching, etc.) of these three is minutely documented looking for evidence of their real relationship(s). By featuring the puppy-dog playfulness of these three the movie video producers are making the most of these fan-tasies. Jimin may represent compassion as the way past limitations that block or freeze us. But, is this just their public personas—simple fan service or a manufactured entertainment drama—confusing and fulfilling the dreams of fans? The fan service among the three is explicitly apparent in this concert video in Japan, deliberately enticing the crowd to go wild.

In ultra-conservative South Korea it seems unlikely that any LGBTQ pairings in mainstream idol-dom will be able to declare their love, even though BTS is outspoken in its support of the LGBTQ community. Is BTS speaking to this when they say: “Let us walk forward without fear, you and I”?

Mikrokosmos

5. What Carl Jung’s concept of the unconscious—symbolized by the watery film projection at the beginning—says about how we individuate: to live life awake versus asleep. Here we see them exploring the unconscious/dream world or “liminal” [threshold] state via the projections of others onto their public masks/personas. How do we move past the money ATM machine and the theatre of idol-dom to cross a greater threshold to spreading the light of knowing and loving our true Self and being truly open to loving others? Remembering, “It’s okay sometimes to show weakness. It’s okay to be you.” In their last album, Map of the Soul: Persona they began a depiction of the path of individuation and we are invited to share their journey via social media in a way never experienced before. It is believed that there will be more albums based on Jung’s ideas in the future.

6. What the Time/Space continuum of quantum physics and/or multiple/parallel universes of String Theory means to us as individuals. This is depicted by time stopping for some of the group while others move outside of frozen time. They also seem to be jumping back and forth in time (time may be an illusion anyway). We all live in parallel, entangled universes. Just so are sound, song, and music a world-wide entanglement force from whence we may be “woke” to the Light. We are wave AND particle, sound and light, matter and spirit, individual and connected.

These last two items form a modern psychomyth based on Plato’s tale – a cinematic drama for our time. We also see an evolution in BTS since 2013 with their focus on the stresses of youth and the all-too-real generational barriers, then moving on to a broader themes of mental health and “Love Yourself,” and then to the “Mikrokosmos” of Map of the Soul, and now are standing at a threshold where we are all part of a connected universe—lights in an infinite web. “Mikrokosmos” is one of the most uplifting songs you can possibly imagine, featuring an early hymn to the same Lights and sung at the closing of all their concerts this year (watch it also on fancam from the Los Angeles Rose Bowl, see especially 8:35 where the crowd goes wild as Jungkook comforts a crying Jimin). Here are the lyrics and who sings them:

Additional Symbolism

Much of the symbolism appears in earlier videos and enlarges on those themes (search youtube and twitter for more), but here are a few things to note:

  • The story connects with the AU (alternate reality storyline(s) found in the many other music videos they’ve produced) – not covered here.
  • The theatre is the same as the one in “Boy With Love” – but they are now inside (psychological interior). Direct image references to Wings and Love Yourself albums (among others).
  • Outside the theatre: Stars = ARMY light bombs = guidance systems. Lines on ground in parking lot = directions in space/time.
  • Projector = projections. Being underwater = in the unconscious.
  • Sound & Light –
    • Video and performance require both. “To create sound waves, light must interact with a medium. This medium must be large enough to propagate the waves over any great distance.” George Talon on Quora.
    • “The relationship between sound and light is like sea and earth. Sound is the various waves of sine wave signals, and it arrives to human ears like the wave of ocean hit the shore. Light is also a form of wave that is visible on human eyes, and brings life on every creatures on the earth.” Syd Crimston on Quora.
    • “Sound and light are similar in that both are forms of energy that travel in waves. They both have properties of wavelength, freqency and amplitude. Here are some differences:
      • Sound can only travel through a medium (substance) while light can travel through empty space.
      • Sound is a form of mechanical energy caused by vibrations of matter. Light is electromagnetic energy caused by interacting electric and magnetic fields. 
      • A light wave is a transverse wave, meaning that its displacement is perpendicular to its direction of travel. (Picture a sine wave or an ocean wave.) A sound wave is a longitudinal wave, meaning that its displacement is the direction it travels. It’s also called a compression wave. Picture a Slinky toy (spring) being stretched and compressed longitudinally.
      • Light travels much faster than sound. It travels at a speed of about 300 million meters per second, while sound travels at about 340 meters per second depending on altitude and air temperature.”

About BTS

Something special happened when Bang Si-hyuk handed the keys to their own future to the six youths who formed a group around the genius 16 year old rapper, RM/Kim Namjoon. Bang looked for talented boys who were self-motivated and gave them an unheard of amount of independence and creative input, plus a lot of his criticism. Their singing, rapping and dancing as well as staging are all outstanding. Winning awards around the world, while singing in Korean, their songs are upbeat, inspiring and socially conscious.

I first became interested as they based their last album, Maps of the Soul: Persona, on the concepts of Carl Jung and an earlier album referencing Herman Hesse’s Demian. The use of symbolism and social commentary in their videos is matched by their deep compassion and love for self, each other and fans (known as ARMY). Currently ranging in age from 21-26, these seven young men have lived together 24-7 for seven or more years. They write most of their own lyrics, produce solo material, and share their lives through social media to an extent never seen before. They’ve spoken before the U.N. and were featured on the cover of Time magazine as one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World” (with twice the number of votes as any other person). They just completed a world tour of the U.S., London, Paris, Sao Paulo, and Japan, performing to 15 sold-out audiences in the world’s largest stadiums. You might have seen them perform on scores of TV shows this year in the US. If you want to know more, I recommend the “CBS report on BTS’s phenomenal rise to fame “, and Vox’s “The key to BTS’s success: emotional resonance, sincerity, and an ARMY of fans”.

P.S. My dream is to someday do a Jungian Tarot reading with Kim Namjoon.

Added: Besides Bangtan Boy Scouts, BTS also stands for Beyond the Scene. Here’s the ‘behind the scene’ video for Lights through which you can get a little sense of their individual personalities.

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Announcing two Tarot Tours this coming summer in the British Isles. Last year’s trip, Tarot Magic in Merlin’s Britain, sold out early. We are doing it again, with a Tarot trip to Sacred Scotland preceeding it, and a discount if you go on both. Don’t let these journeys pass you by! Sign up before the November 30th deadline. Above is a photo of our private full moon sunrise ceremony in the circle at Stonehenge.

Just two weeks ago I discovered that the hotel where we stayed while searching for Tarot artist Pamela Colman Smith’s burial place, was a hotel she actually stayed at as a young woman. It was in 1897, the year King Arthur’s Castle Hotel opened, with its magnificent roundtable at which we did readings, that Pamela met Henry Irving of the Lyceum Theatre fame. Subsequently she toured with the Lyceum Theatre and designed costumes and sets, getting her nickname, Pixie, from her foster mother, the actress Ellen Terry. Here is what is now called the Camelot Castle Hotel in Tintagel, with Merlin’s Cave in the far bottom right.

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I can’t begin to tell you all the amazing things we encountered on our journey: sacred wells in out of the way locations; stone circles, several of which we had to ourselves; the special fairy glen; a ritual on a hilltop labyrinth; Glastonbury Tor and Chalice Well where Dion Fortune made her home. IMG_2104One of the most magical moments was our using dowsing rods to find what we believed was Pixie Smith’s unmarked grave. Linda dropped her pendulum, hearing it fall. We searched for it in vain, only to have the bus driver when we returned ask who had dropped a pendulum on the bus. It was Linda’s. That night at the Camelot Castle Hotel we used the pendulum to ask Pixie questions about her life – and it was months later that I discovered from one of her letters that she had probably drunk her favorite “Opal Hush” drink in that same bar 120 years before.

The Tarot Magic in Sacred Scotland Tour is

14-23 May 2018

and will feature Tarot readings in sacred sites for gaining insight into your own spiritual journey…readings whose messages will continue to unfold for years to come. Experience:

  • Inverness and surrounding area – Prehistoric Clava Cairns and standing stones, Rosemarkie Fairy Glen, Loch Ness
  • Orkney – Skara Brae, Maes Howe, Stones of Stennes, Ring of Brodgar, archaeological dig on the Ness of Brodgar
  • Iona – Abbey, Nunnery, St Columba’s Chapel
  • Standing stones at Kilmartin.

More information: https://globalspiritualstudies.com/travel/sacred-scotland/

The Tarot Magic in Merlin’s Britain Tour immediately follows on

23 May – 1 June 2018

and takes us to:

  • Stonehenge
  • Avebury and West Kennet long barrow
  • Glastonbury and surrounding area – Chalice Well, the Tor, Glastonbury Abbey, Cadbury/Camelot
  • Tintagel and surrounding area – Tintagel Castle, Merlin’s Cave, St Nectan’s Glen
  • Boscastle – Museum of Witchcraft and Magic
  • South Cornwall – Boscowen-un stone circle, Merry Maidens stone circle, holy wells of Madron and Sancreed.

More information: https://globalspiritualstudies.com/travel/avalon-to-camelot/

Watch this video of our trip, created by Linda Marson, to catch just a little of the magic: 

 

Don’t miss The Tarosophy Tarot Convention 2012

Dallas, October 20th-21st 2012

Barbara MooreSteampunk Tarot, Tarot Spreads, Tarot for Beginners

Mary K. Greer21 Ways to Read a Tarot CardWomen of the Golden Dawn

Carrie ParisSanta Fe Tarot & incredible teacher of Tarot

Ellen Lorenzi-PrinceTarot of the Crone

Robert M. Place, Alchemical Tarot, Tarot: History, Symbolism & Divination

Marcus KatzTarosophy, Around the Tarot in 78 Days (with Tali Goodwin), Tarot Professionals

with even more – we will be offering many additional evening Tarot workshops by:

*NEW* Rana George on Lenormand Card Reading

Enrique Enriquez

Katrina Wynne

Paul Nagy

Dr. Art Rosengarten

Jaymi Elford

Mike Hernandez

and others …

and deck presentations/classes by many Tarot artists

Beth Seilenon

GUEST M.C. Dan Donche (“Inappropriate Tarot” & new Darkana Deck)

After-Dinner Speaker James Wells!

Information Here.

me in front of the Sforza Castle, Milan

I’m working on an overview of the Italy Tarot Tour, but with nearly 2,000 photos and an unbelievable number of wonderful experiences, it’s hard to know what to select. I want to mention a few things that have come up in the meantime and I’m trying out the BlogPress app on my iPad (all mistakes are due to this).

Check out Destined: A Novel of the Tarot, a book-in-progress by Gail Cleare at authonomy.com. The story is built around the 22 Major Arcana of the Payen Tarot (an early Marseilles-style deck) and her encounter with an esoteric scholar who owns an old curio shop. It can be read directly online for free, and you can offer suggestions to the author, so get in your helpful criticisms before the book is finished.

I’ve come across several novels recently that include some tarot in them.

First is the 4th and 5th books of Sara Donati’s Wilderness series:
Fire Along the Sky and Queen of Swords. These books are epic, romantic melodramas that may or may not be to your taste. The use of tarot is a little anachronistic, even given that it is post-de Gébelin, but I’m not really complaining – it’s lite fiction.

Mystery writer Martha Grimes includes a little tarot in two books in her Emma Graham series:
Belle Ruin and its follow-up Fadeaway Girl. Both contain a fortune-teller who reads tarot cards. In the second book, the 5 of Pentacles is described as “Orphans in the Snow” and the Hanged Man shows up as a ‘good’ card, reflecting the twists and turns of the plot and the main character’s indirect way of questioning people, or, perhaps, one of the book’s themes – about the difference between fiction and reality. I enjoyed the “fadeaway” motif.

I understand that the new book, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, has a little tarot in it.

In an earlier post I talked about the Daily Tarot Journal, pointing out Quirkeries – a Personal Tarot Book of Days as one model for using a blog to record your readings. While you can set a blog to private, you may not feel comfortable with an internet format. A much more private option is available FREE for the iPhone, iPad and Android. It is Moment Diary, also known simply as MD. Simplicity is its theme. It provides a handy format for keeping daily records and allows you to include a photo or video of your cards. The video is really great if you’d rather speak instead of typing your card observations. I recommend starting out with a consistent system for naming your daily tarot card(s) so you can search on all appearances of any card. I believe you can use hashtags as a quick way of listing them. The only real failings are limited design/font options and not being able to send the entries to your social media – but Moment Diary is designed to be private and elegantly simple within a calendrical format.

Statue of Columbia Pacific Cemetery

Finally, you might want to look into what’s going on with DC 40 and the 51 Days of Reformation Intercession organized by the New Apostolic Reformation movement, a group that presidential hopeful, Rick Perry, has claimed as an inspiration. They believe that God’s word should be the legal and governmental authority in the United States, and that Christians should acknowledge no other. Compromise is ungodly and any form of feminine Goddess is demonic. This includes, if course, Columbia (patron Goddess of the United States, i.e., District of Columbia) and Lady Liberty. Read about their prayer initiative at PNC-Minnesota Bureau and The Wild Hunt. They may sound like a fringe group, but with people like Rick Perry taking them seriously, we need to be aware of their influence. Personally, I am erecting an altar to Goddess Columbia to send her my share of positive juice. Perhaps she needs a tarot deck dedicated to her . . .

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad. Follow-up note: BlogPress crashed when I was trying to save, but I was able to recover most of my material in the iTunes backup.

Amnesty International has called on the King of Saudi Arabia to halt the execution of a Lebanese national, who was sentenced to death for charges relating to “sorcery.”

Ali Hussain Sibat is the former host of a popular call-in talk show on the radio station Sheherazade in Beirut, where he would predict the future and offer advice to his audience. One report said “he gave counsel and encouragement to troubled callers by “predicting” good things would happen to them.” He was arrested by the Mutawa’een (religious police) in May 2008 while he was in Saudi Arabia to perform a form of Muslim pilgrimage, the ‘umra. Last week his appeal was denied and he could be executed at any time.

Amnesty International called on the authorities to release Ali Hussain Sibat and another unidentified man immediately and unconditionally if they have been convicted solely for the peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression. Information is also available at CNN. NPR reports that sorcery charges are on the rise in Saudi Arabia.

This is only one example of the epidemic of witchcraft and sorcery prosecutions and murders of witches taking place around the world. It has become so rampant that the United Nations Human Rights Council is finally seeking to do something about it. According to the International Humanist and Ethical Union, “Accusations of witchcraft [in Africa], targeting mainly the old, the weak and the most disadvantaged in society is a world-wide scourge. And horrific though the actual practice of witchcraft may be [in some cases children are killed for their body parts for use in spells] the number of these victims is exceeded many-fold by the number of children tortured and killed after having been falsely accused of being witches. The problem is indeed worldwide. We heard at a seminar organized by the High Commission for Human Rights of abuse of those accused of witchcraft from Nepal to Tanzania. And from Papua/New Guinea to the United Kingdom. The UN High Commission for Refugees has published a report highlighting the scale of the problem in refugee camps.”

In Nigeria it was found that unscrupulous pastors, many linked to Pentecostal churches, have a lucrative trade in making unfounded accusations of witchcraft against young children and then agreeing to “cure” the witches for a substantial fee.  In her book ‘Unveiling the Mysteries of Witchcraft,’ Helen Ukpabio, the leader of Liberty Foundation Gospel Ministries, states that a child under the age of two that cries at night and has poor health is ‘an agent of Satan’. More information at MSNBC.

Is the Constitutional right to protection of “freedom of religion” about to go down the drain in the United States? See update below! Check out this tarot reading on the subject by Donnaleigh.

Did you know that freedom of religion actually functions on a two-tier basis in California? And that some religions do not have the same rights as others? That’s correct. Not all religions have equal rights in California and the situation may be about to set a legal precedent.

In the on-going case of Patrick M. McCollum, et al., v. California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, et al., the CDCR, other related defendants, and the Assistant Attorneys General of California, in one of their first arguments to the court said that certain “traditional” faiths are first tier faiths and that those faiths were meant to have equal rights and  protections under the United States Constitution, but that all of the other faiths were second tier faiths, and were not meant to have the same equal rights and protections under the United States Constitution as the first tier faiths.”

This “two tiers” argument was echoed by a recently filed amicus brief by the WallBuilders’, which claims that modern Pagans have no expectation of Constitutional protection under the religion clauses.

“The true historic meaning of “religion” excludes paganism and witchcraft, and thus, does not compel a conclusion that McCollum has state taxpayer standing … paganism and witchcraft were never intended to receive the protections of the Religion Clauses. Thus, in the present case there can be no violation of those clauses … Should this Court conclude that McCollum has taxpayer standing … this Court should at least acknowledge that its conclusion is compelled by Supreme Court precedent, not by history or the intent of the Framers.”

This is not about paganism and witchcraft. It’s about people of one set of religious beliefs getting to dictate which other religions get rights under the law and which ones do not, here in the United States. Although the court case itself is about overcoming what McCollum has called an “endemic” level of religious discrimination against minority faiths in our prison system, the results of the case can set legal precedents affecting our Constitutional protection of “freedom of religion” throughout the legal system.

Keep up with the case and find out what you can do at WildHunt.org.

Hear a podcast interview of Wiccan priest, Patrick McCollum by Anne Hill on Beliefnet. McCollum discusses many things that won’t be found in the text articles.

See ReligiousTolerance.org for their assessment that, based on percentage, Wicca is the fastest growing religion in the United States and Canada. Other websites differ, however most analyses do not include Wicca at all in their comparisons.

UPDATE CHANGED: I have seen an explanation that the WallBuilders’ amicus brief is based on McCreary County v. ACLU, 545 U.S. 844, 885-90 (2005)—during which there was an attempt to say that the Framers intended “religion” to mean either Christianity or monotheism. Stephen G. has just sent me the following correction:

I’m *very* happy to reassure you: the Supreme Court did *not* declare that the Framers intended “religion” to have a limited meaning; certainly, its meaning was not limited to Christianity or monotheism.

There were three opinions in the McCreary case; taking them in reverse order: (3) the dissent — written by Scalia, fully joined by then-Chief-Justice Rehnquist and Thomas, and only partially joined by Kennedy — included the language you’re understandably concerned about. But keep in mind this was a dissenting opinion, so it has no force of law. And fwiw, Kennedy did not join the offensive material in the opinion, which was confined to Part I; his joinder was limited to Parts II and III. (2) In a concurring opinion, O’Connor joined the majority, while adding some comments that didn’t go directly to the problem you’ve identified. (1) The majority opinion — written by Souter; joined by Stevens, O’Connor, Ginsburg, and Breyer — very pointedly slammed Scalia’s dissent for insisting the Framers endorsed monotheism/Christianity.

Bottom line: as of McCreary, the score was 5 to 3 in favor of a non-exclusive reading of “religion” for purposes of the Establishment Clause. And the 5 made constitutional law binding all courts in the US. I checked a USSC database for “monotheis*”; no cases since McCreary. So it looks solid. Of course, if you remove Rehnquist and O’Connor, the score becomes 4 to 2. But even if Roberts and Alito took the dark side on this issue, it’s also clear that Kennedy wouldn’t; he refused to endorse Scalia’s endorsement of monotheism.

Charles VI - Hanged ManThere are thousands of good causes and I don’t want to make this a forum that addresses them. However, in the spirit of the Hanged Man in its original intention of a shame portrait, I want the 30 senators who voted against the anti-rape law to explain why they did so, and I’m willing to hang them in effigy until they produce some good reasons. The bags in the hands of the Hanged Man in the Charles VI Tarot (see right) are there as the mark of Judas and indicate the selling out of trust, honor and goodness. Who is hurt in this case? Hundreds or even thousands of women who work for American companies overseas. Their contracts prohibit them from  suing or speaking out. Instead, they are forced into secret arbitration and most of the perpetrators are never punished. More insidiously rape becomes a practice that “should be expected.” Company arbitration has not been effective at deterring rape among overseas workers. Laws have to be enforced and the consequences severe enough to protect the women. The companies have proved themselves unwilling to do this. This is explained in the video of Rachel Maddow interviewing Jamie Leigh Jones and her attorneyhere. You’ll find Jon Stewart’s commentary here, in which he points out that the Republican’ claim that it’s “political,” and that government should have no say regarding the company contracts of those hired by the government, is directly opposite to Republican arguments regarding other companies. By the way, the link to “Republicans for Rape” that pictures and names the 30 senators—with their phone numbers—is a spoof site, designed to show just how outrageous this situation actually is and to make it easy for you to contact the senators and tell them what you think.

Jim Carroll 1bJim Carroll 3bJim Carroll 2bJim Carroll (1949 – Sept. 11, 2009), author of the book/film, The Basketball Diaries, as I knew him—poet, friend: Bolinas, California, 1976-78. Read the rest of this entry »

lovers

Warning: the following is a political, social commentary by Keith Olbermann prompted by the passage of Prop.8 in California, which rescinded the right of same sex couples to marry.  I found it a beautiful and impassioned plea for humanity’s honoring of the deepest meaning of the Lovers card. The title above is a line from the poet Omar Khayyam quoted by Olbermann.

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Mary K. Greer has made tarot her life work. Check here for reports of goings-on in the world of tarot and cartomancy, articles on the history and practice of tarot, and materials on other cartomancy decks. Sorry, I no longer write reviews. Contact me HERE.

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