When the Dark Moon enters the earthy sign of Virgo, which is a sign of order, analysis and purity, a dialogue among Witches* unfolds about the relationship between entropy, atrophy and apathy…of life, struggle and insanity in modern American Society.
Heron: Is this modern life just the relentless battle against entropy and atrophy? Is it a battle to keep this order we’ve built from falling into chaos and decay?
Or is it the struggle against apathy? Rising each morning to try and give a damn just a little longer, to keep staving off the inevitable darkness? I look around and see that we judge those who succumb to apathy, and therefore fall into decay and chaos, as “insane.” Is this an ‘if you don’t use it, you’ll lose it?’ situation?”
Does that mean that “sane” can describe those who continue to fight a hopeless battle? Doesn’t that sound a little bit crazy?
1. A thermodynamic quantity… often interpreted as the degree of disorder or randomness in the system.
2. Lack of order or predictability; gradual decline into disorder.
At·ro·phy: noun \ˈa-trə-fē\
1. decrease in size or wasting away of a body part or tissue; also : arrested development or loss of a part or organ incidental to the normal development or life of an animal or plant
2. a wasting away or progressive decline
Ap·a·thy: noun \ˈa-pə-thē\
1. lack of feeling or emotion : impassiveness
2. lack of interest or concern : indifference
Cardinal: Happiness comes, and happiness goes. Sadness comes, and sadness goes. Same way for entropy, atrophy, and apathy. Change is the nature of the universe. When we fight against that change, that’s when we create struggle for ourselves.
Raven: This is a tough cookie to crumble. I find peace when realizing that I can’t change the inevitable.
Heron: What about the man-made systems of modern life? That isn’t “natural.” What about when the struggle to overcome the entropy in those false system becomes an all-consuming way of life!? Like lawn maintenance and the house needing repainted, and rotten roofs needing repair, car maintenance, dusting, vacuuming, laundry…
Or, our own physical upkeep with particular hairstyles, manicures, waxing, plucking, shaving, dying and preening. We fight erosion and depletion, food spoilage, ecosystems damage, garbage creation and removal, heat, cold, humidity, mold, insects…fight, fight, fight…
Look at what it takes to restore our artificial “order” after nature’s “chaos,” like when a hurricane comes tearing through town. Yes–nature is a cycle that includes decline toward death and destruction. I accept that. Yet it seems to me that I spend 75% of my time, and most of my money, in the fight to maintain this false order we call “modern life.” If I didn’t keep doing this maintenance work, some might say I’d succumbed to insanity – when we let ourselves go.Ever watch the show Hoarders? There is a whole genre of television programming where viewers sit in horrified judgement over the degraded way we find folks suffering in heaps of their own filth, infested, consumed by apathy. Yet it is classified as an indication of legit mental illness that we are gawking at. This is not appropriate for “entertainment.” But it does shine a light for me on the unnatural pressures we place on ourselves in the struggle to maintain a ridiculous materialism under the guise of “modern comfort.”
This approach to modern living is askew, and the struggle against nature is in vain, breeding unhappiness. Does that make any sense?
Cardinal: Perfect sense. Its a silly game. So, we can either play the game, fall to despair, or take our toys and go home.
Raven: Living the way we do is a choice, and we can choose simpler lives if we are unwilling to pay the price. The comforts of modern life we’ve grown accustomed to having demand much of us, and we pay to play. Payment is the effort it takes to stave off atrophy and defy entropy with daily energy and care. This is the “fixed” energy of the triplicity.
Heron: I am tired. Life is hard, but, I am here, and while I am here, I choose the level of dignity at which I will thrive. If I change my choices, perhaps I can trim back the bullshit and make things easier.
I believe that the purpose of life on earth is to enjoy it, so I’m going to choose a lifestyle that supports my happiness. If a standard ‘thing of modern life’ requires more work than it’s worth, then I choose to live without it. If my work maintains what makes me happy, giving me satisfaction, I will do that work with passion. If it only frustrates and enslaves me with resentment, no thank you.
Cardinal, Fixed, Mutable. Birth, growth, maintenance, fulfillment, integration, decline, destruction, rest, (repeat.) It will happen at every strata of existence, whether I’m in a 3bed/2bath on a 1/4 acre of grass that needs mowing, or I sell everything and dig a den under the earth like a bear.
The chaos and unpredictability of entropy are an unavoidable part of any system in life. Yet, I can’t forget that life is a gift, and if I don’t use my abilities, I’ll lose my freedom to use them through atrophy. Meaning can also be found in the struggle of learning these things the hard way. Nevertheless, happiness is worth fighting for.
Moral of the Story:
- Apathy robs your choice for happiness without a fight. Put up or shut up. (See #3)
- Entropy is inevitable without fresh injections of give a damn. (See #1)
- Atrophy is inevitable without a daily dose of just do it. (See #2)
…or something like that.
New Moon Blessings,
*Gratitude for the inspiration given through this conversation years ago on a Facebook thread, on another New Moon in Virgo. Raven’s muse was our Sojo Tribe’s Alisa H. and Cardinal’s muse was Terrell G. We miss both of you!