Saturday, July 31, 2010

St. Joseph of Arimethea

Page 82 of Jordan Stratford's book, Living Gnosticism:An Ancient Way of Knowing, from which I derive my Gnostic liturgical/holiday calendar, lists today, July 31, as the day to honor Joseph of Arimethea. Joseph is the one thought to have donated his tomb to Jesus after his crucifixion. Western churches celebrate his day in March, while the Eastern traditions, like the Gnostic one I derive my calendar from, celebrate it today. Legends have also tied him to the Holy Grail, and it seems to be in this respect that the aforementioned book honors him.

But what is this Holy Grail? The DaVinci Code, similar to the book Holy Blood, Holy Grail, theorizes that it symbolizes the unity of male and female, the Goddess, as well as the secret that Jesus had a child, and therefore a family tree still in existence. To me, it further symbolizes the secret knowledge of the God within. We all have our "holy grails", those things which are our dreams, our life purposes, the seemingly unattainable goals. For me, it is summed up perfectly in the words of Jordan Stratford's book:

May my house be at peace in this time of war. May I have a voice in this time of oppressive silence. May I have love in this time of immense loneliness. May I have justice in this time of cruelty, democracy in this age of despots.

Peace. Internal and external. That is what I long for, ultimately. To be happy with who I am as a person. To come to terms with the things I have been through in life, and be prepared for things I will inevitably go through as this life progresses. Being okay with myself even on days I feel lonely and feel I have no friends, no close family, no potential romantic interests. Peace that everything is going to be okay. I know I'm learning that peace, when I sit in my car on break at work, de-stressing from the usual strange happenings, and feel instantly calm when I see a raccoon near the dumpster, or two owls flittling through the trees, catching mice on the ground. Or when I am put into awkward positions by my most incompetent co-worker, who tries to make me look like the bad guy because I'm the one actually enforcing the daily rules and schedule, and actually tries to basically turn the kids against me - and then has the nerve to say I'm not running group therapy very well because she's not doing her job of helping establish control of the kids' behaviors so I can gather my thoughts for the day's topic. Things like this happen, and yet I'm not as angry as I normally would be, or at least the anger doesn't last nearly as long as it used to.

Interestingly enough, I happened to watch a movie on my Netflix Rental Queue called Ink. It's an indie movie, and I'd never heard of it, but as I was browsing the movies you could instantly watch on your Wii or computer, it caught my eye. I immediately had to order it on Amazon, because although I didn't get to watch it very closely for the last half of the movie, what I did get to watch immediately resonated with me. In it, an overstressed businessman is suffering from depression and loneliness and guilt. His estranged elementary-aged daughter, who lives with his in-laws, is put into a coma. In reality, both conditions are a fight amongst two sets of spiritual beings - Storytellers, who endow peoples' dreams with hope and positivity and love, and Incubi, who torment people with nightmares and hopelessness. In a dream,a kind of middle character, Ink, who kidnaps the little girl's soul in an attempt to purchase his way into the graces of the Incubi - this spiritual abduction is the source of her coma. The Storytellers, aided by a mysterious blind Pathfinder, are on a quest to save her and restore her to life.

One of the scenes that stuck out to me, perhaps partly because it was one of the few later scenes I was able to focus on(my housemate is dog-sitting, and the arrival of the dog was causing a bit of a stir), is when the father is in a car, unconscious after a car accident. An Incubi is then standing beside him. If I remember correctly, the Incubus is telling him not to wake up, that his life is worthless, things along those lines. A Storyteller appears and chases the Incubus away. She then comes to the unconscious man and touches his forehead. She begins showing him memories of his first date with his wife, and the happy years of their marriage. Throughout, she reminds him: "It's going to be okay, John. In the end, everything is going to be okay."

Today is a day to remember: in the end, it's all going to work out. Everything will be okay.

1 comment:

QoC said...

Hi, just happened to stumble across your post here...

Sometimes it's so much easier to lose yourself and let go than to keep walking. Good for you for sticking through it and believing that things will work out.

I hope that you find the things you seek and that you are cut some slack at work. Blessings <3