Okay, disclaimer: I dreamed this post so I’m wondering exactly where it came from but I will say I see an awful lot of the posts on godspousing are very nasty toward any one that might even be interested in it (and it’s the same kind of nasty they aim at alleged fluffy bunnies ) and as if they have some perceived mandate from their god that makes them superior to every other pagan. The old “their shit don’t stink” phenomenom.
There are two phenomena that greatly concern this old pagan that seem to have appeared in the last 5 years and are just plain weird to me and seem to arise out of a combination of ego and anti-feminism and seem to be practiced almost totally by women. They are “godspousing and veiling.
I’ve made an effort to read several blogs on the part of the people advocating and almost every one of them has some version of “don’t try this at home, I’m an expert” as if the were some kind of pagan Mythbuster. Neither one of the practices has a precedent in historical practice and the women (it’s mostly young women) doing it seem to be very young and looking for a way to stand out and be different in the pagan world with a few exceptions.
I see a lot of people trying to impose structure on what they feel is unstructured and I’m willing to bet they left a religion that had structure and imposed it.
So, lets take veiling first. Some of the blogs reference nuns wearing veils to show their piety. That is not why nuns wear veils and post Vatican two most nuns do not wear veils unless you are a BVM, (Blessed Virgin Mary or the Black Veiled Monsters if you happen to be an order that does not wear one.) or they wear a very modified shortened one. But do they know the veil is simply a hand me down from the Middle Ages when all women covered their hair and it wasn’t done out of piety. It was done to show they were married and property of some man. Any woman that was not covering their hair was a whore and indeed in those days the only two groups of women living together would have been nuns or brothels.
Look at old woodcuts of the time period. All the women were wearing the wimple and veil, It simply survived in the Catholic Church wear men still wear the same robes that priests have always worn. The Catholic Church is not exactly a hot bed of modernism.
Now combine this with Godspousing which also has the flavour of becoming a nun and you really have a misunderstanding of history. Most women in the Middle Ages when the convent system was at it’s height were not there because they loved Jesus and decided to be a Bride of Christ. They were actually in the minority and vocations are a very new concept.
Women in the Middle Ages were in convents because they were inconvenient and had no where else to go. Have a daughter and no dowry for her or only a small one? Put her in a convent. Have a girl that won’t do what you tell her? Stick in a convent. Have a widow with property and she won’t marry you? Force her into a convent? Have a motherless girl and you don’t have the time to raise her? Stick her in a convent. Inconvenient women went to convents because women had no property rights and all women had to be controlled by somebody because women were sinful and evil and caused men to sin simply by being women. Ironically, sticking when in a convent actually freed them and gave them more power than they would have had in marriage. And had the benefit of not having to die in childbirth trying to produce an heir for some man.
The only precedent I could find in the ancient world for veiling and even coming close to being a Godspouse are the Vestal Virgins and they agreed to a set number of years entering around the age of 10 and leaving if they chose to as very rich women and about the only ones besides the communities of sybils that had any autonomy among the wealthy. If you were poor in Roman times you would have been a lot more free than a rich woman.
From what I can see of the many blogs on these two topics, it’s all ego. I’m more holy than you and I worship my god so totally I’m going to marry him. So of course the next blog writer has to say almost the same thing, my god totally rules me and of course you can’t do it as well as I. What a load of horseshit. No deity worth worshipping is going to ask you to give up yourself. I sincerely wonder who you’re following it sounds like a deity called up from a ouija board.
And it seems to exist in people under 30 almost exclusively. I can’t find any instance that any of this existed more than 5 years ago which also makes me very suspicious. As some one who has been around since the mid-80’s I can tell you there was no one doing that I could see then and indeed they probably would have been laughed out of any gathering.
Surely there is a better way to worship a deity than playing pagan oneupmanship?