Friday, March 02, 2007

Gods Are Bored Fashion Show

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," clearinghouse for 10,000 One True Religions! Choose, then choose again, then change your mind, and then check out the clearance rack! There's sure to be a deity that's perfect for you, and in your price range, too.

You know what all religions have in common? Whenever two or more people gather together to practice, they're gonna note what the others are wearing.

If you happen to practice in a state of nudity, you're not exempt. Your compadres will still take notes, and make notes, and mull your birthday suit over in their minds, whether they mean to or not.

We at "The Gods Are Bored" get a great deal of Pagan news from The Wild Hunt, a very rational and comprehensive site. Lately the author of this site has reported on a mild frisson among Pagans on what exactly constitutes proper Pagan attire for gatherings of a religious nature.

Some malcontents have actually heaped scorn on the Goth and Medieval attire that is so popular with the New Age crowd.

Argue with this one if you'd like, but I sure wouldn't kick him out of my circle.

One contributor of a comment at "Wild Hunt" suggested that Pagans should "grow up," wear normal clothing, and stop using made-up names, so as to be taken seriously. Tell it to this guy.

Moving on to Exhibit C:

I don't know about you, but when I see these dudes coming, I suddenly remember I have to clear the hair trap in my bathtub. Hi fellas, leave your weird book on the porch and come back for it later!

This bored god thinks we moderns don't go nearly far enough in our body ornamentation.

The point I'm trying to make is, what's the big deal if folks want to wear their SAC or Ren Faire garb to a Pagan worship service? Or, for that matter, the metal-studded black leather pants they just bought on the sale rack at Hot Topic or some other Goth store? It's human nature to want to dress up when you worship -- you're wearing the most expensive items in your wardrobe, after all.

Actually, this looks like fun to me.

Please don't get the idea that every mega-church is brimming to the plimsol line with Brooks Brothers suits and sensible Talbots ensembles in easy-to-clean polyester. These days the Rapture Righties are trying to lure the youthful crowd by allowing their teenagers to get tattoos and wear leather. Think I'm kidding? I know a youth pastor with a shaved head and a tattoo on his neck that says "Jesus Saves." Yo, whatever works, right?

So, the next time you find yourself in a praise and worship situation with like-minded thinkers, please try to curb your sartorial opinions.

If you find this impossible, we at "The Gods Are Bored" remind you that there are any number of bored gods and goddesses that pine for your praise and worship, even if you want to do it in bed, in your flannel jammies, while eating Oreo cookies and watching "Countdown with Keith."


Addendum: Home today with the flu, anxiously hoping for sufficient health to wear my own religious attire (see below), I checked the moon schedule. Can one worship with egg on the face? As far as I can figure out the time and tide, tomorrow night is a full moon, with an eclipse to boot. I still hope you'll take a moment Friday at 7:30, turn off your lights, and meditate for a solution to global climate change.
I'm a pretty pathetic Pagan if I can't even keep track of the behavior of the moon. I guess I'm hoping that other Pagans won't care if I'm not perfect.


Mama Kelly said...

Personally I think that while some of the garb worn at Pagan gatherings may give "the wrong idea" to the general public I wouldn't have one without the other.

Part of the fun is to be fully in Witch mode --- whatever that may mean to you personally. It may mean leggings and a Witchy Tshirt, a long robe, SCA garb, or something truly obscure.

Grow up indeed!


Mama Kelly
A Blog of 2 Witches

nod said...

Paganism is going through a few changes right now. I feel that a different strain of earth worshiper is emerging. One that disdains the idea of dressing up or changing one's name to a silly artificial note of weirdness. It's all so silly indeed. I certainly would not want to dictate what people wear to a spiritual gathering, but it really does reflect on the group as a whole. It just gives it all such a air irreverence and often times reduces it to some kind of pseudo historical re-enactment. Getting dressed up for religious occasions exists in most cultures, but it's usually simple, clean, and respectful. Not "hey lets get dressed up like it's biblical times", or "i'm gonna be that guy from Braveheart".

SCOTT said...

Anne, Hope you feel better!!
Personally,, I think you have seen pictures of some of my 'garb' or should I say lack of at rituals. And as far a what others think F'em. I don't care what they think they don't pay my bills. I think the modern obsession with clothes will lead to Nudity very soon,,, I hope anyway,,, can't stand clothes except on bitterly cold days. Now I enjoy 'dressing' up like anyone else, but who cares about what is worn to a ritual, unless it is part of the ritual,, for example I could see times where all should where certain color robes or whatnot to certain rituals,, it helps the 'vibration' so to speak, but when people have public rituals,,, come as you may I say.
Loved this post,
Hope you liked my retro music at my blog,,, Styx is Great in my world
Love you

Tennessee Jed said...

I hope you are doing something cool for the lunar eclipse tonight. It will be eclipsed as the sun sets tonight and come out of eclipse after that...perhaps it will look blood red just after the sunset. Watch with me, I know the gods will be there.

Hecate said...

Dear Anne,

Hope you're feeling better. My circle celebrated the full moon last night. We go by the "three day rule" -- as long as you're w/in three days of the event, full moon, dark moon, Sabbat, you're ok.

Angela-Eloise said...

I don't have robes and the most flowing garment I have ever worn to a ritual is a pair of Yohji Yamamoto pants. I am not the typical Wiccan I guess. But I couldn't care less what other people wear to ritual and sometimes it's fun to see how creative people get. My personal belief is that at home, in coven, at a ritual, and even at a festival people should wear whatever they want and whatever the occasion suggests.

However, I think those who argue that modern Pagans would be taken more seriously if they gave some thought to how they dress have a point. If you have a job interview you don't go dressed in a track suit unless the job you are interviewing for is track coach. The fact that what we wear conveys a certain message is just a fact of our culture.

Pagans are struggling for religious equality on a number of legal fronts and every day face discrimination and other challenges as a result of public misconception of who we are. The truth is that members of our community who appear before the public for whatever reason are influencing public perception of our collective religious faith. I don't think it's wrong to hope - or even expect - that those who have the power to influence others take that power seriously. I'm not suggesting that people need to pretend to be something they are not, merely to exercise a little common sense and take responsiblity for how their words and actions affect the rest of our community.

Interrobang said...

I like pseudo-historical reenactment. I was in the SCA for almost a decade (I'm currently on hiatus right now). Back when I'd do some pagan rituals with my housemates (kind of the same as going to church or synagogue with friends), we did most of our rituals either in our regular clothes or in our SCA garb, depending on how we were feeling or how cold it was or where we were. We probably weren't exactly atypical for young urban Canadian pagan practitioners in the mid-90s, in our jeans and flannel shirts and band t-shirts and hiking boots. :)

I do think it would be an interesting social experiment for a public spokesperson for paganism to appear in the media dressed very, very conservatively -- good-quality business attire would likely be best. As Jello Biafra likes to say about the differing social reactions you'll get by being in a suit as opposed to being in your non-suit clothes, "I stand by the power of the Hallowe'en costume."

Rosie said...

Costume is an important part of ritual.

After I became a costume designer, I developed a distaste for costumed events. This is understandable. All of one's relatives, friends and lovers expect free costume design and construction.