Circle of Joy and Sorrow

Everything that exists is in a manner the seed of that which will be. -Marcus Aurelius

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Epona Goes to the Movies

Now you might not expect to see a horse at the movies, but there’s definitely something of Epona in last year’s blockbuster “Crash.” There’s not your typical claim to fame as a pagan movie for the film, considering the portrayal of L.A. at Christmas time and the main spiritual icon being a statue of St. Joseph. But that little Catholic saint is the patron of travelers, and likewise is our Girl Epona. The central meaning of the film is given early, that we have so forgotten how to connect with each other that we can only fill our need for contact by crashing into other people- equal faith opportunity.

And it struck me how true this was, perched on a chair in the jagged circle of a post-movie discussion at “Spark of Spirit” tonight. 5 aggressive drivers dominated what turned into a panel of rhetorical hand-wringing about the media and the growing plague of young white professionals in urban communities. The rest shied away and its true, no one was touching anything let alone each other. It goes without saying there was the gleeful indulgence in the stereotypes of politicians, and white people professing their guilt.

I thought a lot about the idea of seeing racial identities like coins you find on the street. One side is bright and shiny in the sun, but pick it up and turn it over, there’s rust and grime. I thought a lot about the woman who caused a ruckus at my gas station last week because she decided I was parked too far away from the pump. I’m not going to waste time pondering her motives, but since the owner knows me in my Homeland Security uniform, she got told to shut her mouth. Even after going through meditations to give me a sense of loving-kindness towards that woman, I am no closer to understanding how I could have touched her, enter into dialogue, communicated or whatever one is supposed to do.

I thought about that since moving here six months ago I have been assaulted twice in public trans by adult men, whose race you know without my giving it. I thought a lot about the racial division at the federal agency where I work. I had a lot of time since I could barely get a word in edgewise. Epona took a phone call and snuck a chocolate candy bar, while they preached and I thought. And I still have to confess that I don’t know what to think.

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