“Suffice it to say that Eris is not hateful or malicious. But She is mischievous, and does get a little bitchy at times.” –Principia Discordia
“The Universe is laughing at you.” –Morgan’s Tarot
A couple of hours after my last article went up, the admin of that local Pagan Facebook group posted a link to the Wikipedia page on Chaos Magic. “Not wanting to put myself in a box,” she added. “But I think if I had to subscribe to a path, it would be this.”
My kneejerk reaction was proprietary: “HEY. CHAOS MAGIC IS MY THING. GET YOUR OWN THING.” But then the synchronicity hit me, and I thought, “I know! I can use this opportunity to post links to my essays on Chaos Magic in the comments, which will act as a personal introduction, demonstrate my authority on the subject, and prevent anyone from going off about worshipping superheroes. I will kill so many birds with one eloquent stone and rule this joint.”
And then I just stopped everything for a second and was like, “Wait. This feels like a
trap teachable moment.”
If I did share links to my blog, there’s a very good chance that Admin would read the Chaos posts and be like, “Huh. Neat.” and move on. And there’s just as likely a chance that she’d rifle through other posts and find the one I wrote about her. And while I stand behind the things I say online, there’s not a clear probability of how she would respond.
She might go, “Yep, this totally went down,” or, “That does kind of sound like me, but I do not remember this incident at all.” Or she might be like, “Ten years later and still a damn troublemaker; some people never change.” and boot me from the group.
A lot of variables here. And no real way of knowing what the consequences of tooting my own self-serving horn might be.
I was once in an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting where someone said, “When I’m sober, I can do anything; when I drink, anything can happen,” and that always stuck with me. It’s applicable here, too: When I think like a sober person, I can play the tape forward, consider the ramifications of my actions, and decide what I’m willing to be held accountable for. Or, I can do what Drunk Me used to do, act without thinking, and then flail about in the carnage of my own creation going, “I don’t understand how any of this is my fault.”
After consulting my pineal gland on the matter, what I ended up posting was this: “Chaos Magic Theory is pretty awesome. It’s not a tradition in and of itself, but a way of approaching magic with an emphasis on getting results.” Followed by some rambling about Discordianism. Just a Pagan among Pagans, contributing without taking over. The End.
Something else I used to hear a lot in AA is, “Everything happens for a reason,” and my response to that was inevitably, “No. Everything happens, period.” But occasionally, when a coincidence turns into a crossroads, and picking the right path results in me not making an ass out of myself for a change, I have to admit that reality is a lot less random than I like to pretend it is.
So, yes: Sometimes the Universe laughs at me. But sometimes the Universe saves me from myself. And for that, I am eternally grateful.