Is My Vagina* Magick?

Is My Vagina* Magick? August 30, 2017

*I opted to use vagina for the title since it’s that nice middle bit between the vulva and the uterus, and sounds much better than “female reproductive organs” and more accurate than genitalia for the purposes of this piece.  Let’s not even discuss the ovaries right now though.  They’re on my shit list. 

My studio in college, note the vaginas.
My studio in college, can you count the yonis?

When I was a Witchlet, I swung pretty hard to Goddess side of things.  Which is to be expected considering I was running away from Ye Old Patriarchal Jerk God as fast AF.

While Catholicism has the Virgin Mary and a plethora of interesting female saints, there’s a lot left to be desired in recognizing the feminine divine there.  But that’s how it goes: you grow up with one extreme, and you swing to the other to spite it, before finally resting somewhere in the middle…or better yet, finding an entirely new Venn diagram to live in.

This time overlapped with my college years at the Rhode Island School of Design.  I read pretty much all of the feminist meets goddess literature crafted in the 70’s-90’s (including a lot of Dianic books) as well as absorbing as much woman-made art as possible.  This resulted in me making a lot of artwork exploring the female body (particularly all of the reproductive organs and sexual bits), goddess imagery, and women/women relationships.  Yonis galore.

"In The Arms of the Goddess" monotype, circa 1998.
“In The Arms of the Goddess” monotype, circa 1998.

Some day I’ll write up for y’all the time of my life I like to call “a Horned God comes knocking.”  But that is not this post, so it’s best to say, I did find a new version of the masculine divine, and my art expanded out in multiple ways and subject matters.  I moved elsewhere on my path.

But in the last year or so,  a series of unrelated experiences and encounters made me think back to those times and that artwork. The somewhat newly discovered fact that my uterus is somewhat defective (only been seeing a GYN for 18 years, not sure why it took so long to discover it is tilted and that I have PCOS.)  That my period has a thing for full moons when left to its own devices. A friend talking about Red Tent circles and inviting me to a part of it sometime. The fixation some traditional witchcraft practitioners have with using bodily fluids in spellcraft – particularly menstrual blood and its powers. Controversy over who gets to be a woman.  Bullshit legislation regarding reproductive rights and abortion. It’s enough to make a vagina scream.

"Mokosh" - etching, circa 1999
“Mokosh” – etching, circa 1999

And amongst the many long hours I spent in the van this summer, I came to some current conclusions regarding my body and magick.  My ability to create and my propensity to work magick is not subject to or empowered by my vulva, vagina, or uterus.  Or anything that comes out of it, sentient or otherwise. Nor should my (or anyone else’s) rights or classification as a human being be determined by the function, state, or presence of reproductive organs.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with practices and beliefs that revel in the sacredness of vulvas, vaginas, uteruses (uteri?), or penises for that matter.  As long as it’s not coupled with the belief that you’re somehow a better or more special human being because of it.  Sure, you can work certain kinds of magick with those parts.  But those parts aren’t that much different than the specialized group of cells that came together to form your brain, or your liver, or your hair.  The magick resides in the energy of all cells and matter – living or otherwise.  Your power resides in you, not just your parts.

"Baubo" mixed media monotype, circa 1999.
“Baubo” mixed media monotype, circa 1999.

Being a VaginaOwner(TM) doesn’t give me exclusive powers of magick or creation.  I want to be recognized as a human and spiritual being, not categorized by what’s between my legs, or the working state of it.  I think deep down, that’s what most of us want, but we get caught up in a lot nuances seeking to separate us out.

It seems we spend a lot of time focusing on those parts and what makes us different.  We could move along a lot faster as a culture and society if we can give more attention to what unifies and connects us.  If we can recognize and honor the power the resides in each of us as human beings.

So to answer the question of the title.  Of course it is.  Because I am magick, so it wins by association.

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