By Helle Bent
Happy belated New Year and Happy New Administration, dear citizens of the underworld. It is important to celebrate steps in the right direction but our work is never done. On we plow, continuing to both lead and support the revolutions against injustice. New Year’s Day seems like an eternity ago and it’s not even February.
Fight for your future but enjoy the present! Speaking of February and enjoying things…
Lupercalia in The Satanic Temple is a celebration of autonomy, sexual liberation, and reproduction. The Deathly Hallows of sexy time – distinct yet symbiotic.
I’ve discussed in a prior post that I am a queer Satanist who identifies as demi/gray-sexual and pan-romantic. I believe that just about anything is fair game as long as all participants consistently practice the Rule of Consent. Personally I’m aspec, but you go get yours honey. Get a lot of it.
Separately, I loathe children. I’ve successfully done everything in my power not to have them. Near me. Ever.
So where does someone like me fit into a celebration that’s draped in hedonism and fertility and the procurement of self-centric pleasure?
There are as many gender expressions and sexual preferences on this planet as there are humans, and attempting to categorize them in a finite way is a limiting behavior. The moment my brain truly got this, I feel like I had an acid-trip-style awakening.
What the sexuality and gender continuums look like inside a Helle Bent Brain:
Ever see the NASA map of the oldest light in the universe? We are floating space particles. Space jellyfish if you will! Some are happy where we are in our galaxies, on our planets, some of us are still orienting ourselves, some are way out at the edges, and some travel with astounding stamina back and forth across space and time, and you know what? It’s all fine. We just float around, some more than others, and it’s cool. It’s all cool.
Conflict arises in our trying to stay still.
In an environment where floating is not only natural but beneficial.
Where pinning oneself to one location can be dangerous.
Where it takes more effort to stay frozen in space than to go with the flow.
Conflict arises when someone tells us that floating, exploration, and evolution are forbidden.
That their one corner of their one planet is the only suitable place for life because long ago someone else heard a space monster said so.
Why would I attempt to categorize every food I eat as either a Mounds bar or an Almond Joy? Sometimes I feel like a nut, sometimes I fucking don’t, and sometimes I’m on a fucking salad binge and sometimes I want a fucking chocolate chip cookie. I think I lost my metaphor. (Insert Milky Way joke…?)
My idea of sexual liberation embraces every identity, preference, body, and consensual act as equally valid and perfectly okay. Autonomy, in this context, is knowing and owning yourself, what you want, and understanding your power and your role in its acquisition. It’s the understanding that we and our paths, like fingerprints, are similar but still unique and nuanced.
This is why every last one of us belongs not only in the celebration of Lupercalia, but in our Satanic community and on this planet. My identity is my own, and I rock that shit. (Seriouslyyouguyz, I’m really cool you don’t even know.) This is what I’m celebrating. The universe is infinite, as we are, and there’s room for all of us.
I’m celebrating my liberation from the restrictions that others have placed on us. I don’t live for anyone else, just as they don’t concern themselves with living for me and my approval and my feelings. There is a freedom in owning yourself but it can’t be given to you. You have to take it.
If someone tells you that you should be a certain way, pity their willingness to remain bound inside the rusty, antiquated chains that limit life’s potential. It’s these folks and their chains who make it dangerous for us free-floating space jellyfish. Live in a way that kindly allows them to see that they are bound.
I take issue with the concept of should when reason and means are excluded from consideration. Is it in someone’s power to improve current circumstances? Are they working towards fulfilling a reasonable, healthy, and realistic expectation? If someone’s idea of what should be contradicts a resounding respect for the autonomy of others, they are bound in chains and simply complaining that others are not. Live your objection proudly.
There is no should. There is desire, and there is displeasure. There is acceptance, and there is conflict. There is determination, and there is apathy. There is oppression, and there is diversity. Seek to live deliciously, discard that which does not serve you, and do not confuse objective, concrete reality with subjective human interpretations and limitations.
Lastly, this year The Satanic Estate will have space dedicated to those who sashay along the rainbow continuum of the asexual identities. Everyone is welcome, everyone belongs.
My life is my own. Thyself is they master. A joyous and fulfilling Lupercalia to all!
Hail Satan. Hail Lilith. Hail Thyselves.