Liminal points. These points of transition, one form to another, are both consequences of Life, and yet not truly a Part of life, because they stop where they are. And stopping is to resist Change, and Change is Life, so liminal points are not part of life, but cause life, or otherwise support it. They are the gate thru which the spirit passes. Shamans either form part of the gate, or support the gates, or sometimes are, themselves, the gate. I suppose Mothers must be thought of as Gates. I found myself within Peggy Jo Shirley and then I was not and sometime fairly soon, as Time is thought of, I will be Not. Not of this Form. But I digress.
The Points themselves are analogus to vertices of a Sigil, thus a Great Pattern is formed. This is pretty much Western Tradition, but even the East Coast is Western, as far as the East is concerned.
But to be part of a Transition is not necessarily to be a "Vertex of Fate" (tada) Sometimes you just stumble into it. So it is that I meditate on Furlinghetti the Cat. As we speak, she could be doing her Transition out of this interactive version of Life. That is to say, her cancer is starting to rip her body into smaller, non-interactive bits. She has found a spot she likes in the garden I have made of my back yard where she feels protected, yet able to at least hear the rest of Life going on around her. I have decided that since her sores are causing her problems and there isn't really anything we can do about the sores, because her immune system is pretty shot by now... well, it seems that once again I get to play Undertaker. I have this vision of the Spirit Furlinghetti, as I experienced it being whipped out to sea by a sudden tide and all I can see of Furlingehtti is her hands outstretched, but I cannot reach or pull or something and then there is nothing but the flotsom on the beach. In this case I have a furry body to bury.
But Liminal points are by definition not part of the consequences. Or at least not nccessarily. Because unless Furball comes back for a visit, I will never feel close to her again, nt really, so in part my Self is being impacted, but not my Soul. Maybe it's a kind of a split, which can be recognized as a Liminal point. And everything past the One is bifurcating, so Everything is a Liminal Point. Maybe that efines a multidimensional circle or something, some crazy Sigil that I can't yet read. I just know it sucks to pay someone to kill my cat because I think the dying thing is gone on long enough.
Suppose, for instance, that a Soul is traveling along and happens to take a hairpin turn and slide ever so briefly into a Space wherein I dwell, like a bacteria on a lamp post on a tight curve at night. Now I see the face of the driver of the carriage but what happens if I intervene and try to stop the Coach? The mission has been altered, the King never makes it to the Coast to seek freedom somewhere beyond? Catch my drift? Maybe not, sometimes my references are too obscure and layered. The point though, is that what would have changed is someone had intervened on behalf of, say, Jesus? Or even Charles Darwin? People would have changed, Things would have changed and Change is Life, so Life would have gone on.... But it would be different.
But just because I see a 'cat' does not mean that some Great Soul has not banged into the Lampost of my Life. No, in fact it makes a lot of sense. Seems to me that I have met a lot of Great Souls in my Time and you gotta figure that like certain intersections like Time Square just get a lot more action, certain kinds of people meet a lot of Great Souls, yet never seem to be able to hang on very long, like they are just passing thru and they leave you with an autograph, or a bit of leather... We save these these things, we incorporate them into our myths and our Story, and sometimes we stick them in lockboxes and others have to figure them out. But it seems right to me that if you get stuck on the idea that because you perceive yourself as merely part of the change and not part of the consequences, you can get sloppy on your participation. So a ritual provides you with the way of dispensing with all those various energies, "good" and "bad" and then you can move on or not, to your next interaction with Life. And it tightens up the whole design. Shamans are nothin of not folks who tighten up in a clinch. Like when a good old friend is dying and there's not a damn thing you can do to stop it. Stopping is a denial of Life, because Life is Change and so, therefor, must be Death. That's why the other Face of Persephone is the Crone, and no one can stop the Crone from coming in and doing what She Has to Do. Think about it. All those Fairy Godmothers jumping in and barging in to the King and Queen's chambers or spiriting away a child who Changes Everthing. It's just that Furlinghetti is getting close to the point when she will stop changing me.
No stops to scratch her tummy, no suddenly having to stop reading to allow her to talk to me face to face.... a lot of things will be left behind. Yet to hate change is to hate life and that's not such a great idea. Seems to me that hate in general is not such a great idea, and self-hate is gotta be even nastier. So you do what you have to do and deal with the consequences, knowing all the while that the consequences are not what defines You.
Dang. I liked it better when a sunny day was just a sunny day and not a day dry enough to dig a couple of graves.
Now think about some poor slob doing the same thing for his kids while our representatives talk of and balence consequences. If it hurts me so much to think about my poor cat dying, it must be amazingly hard on the rest of the world responding to what people are doing who apparently have every ability to point to me and my family and claim that we gave them a mandate to do this. But then I suppose that all change is part of Life and all that, and then it must be noted that we all have a right to find our spot to die in and maybe Furlinghetti has picked hers. I hate to think of dragging her off in a box to have some guy knock her out. Eventually she'll be where she was going to be anyway, but her last rememberence of me would be of stuffing her into a box and then pulling her out into the hands of a nice stranger.... I just find that hard to reach. I suppose maybe it's up to her.