10/15/2009

Transformations

A friend of mine recently gave me an issue of Transformations Magazine, a porn mag focusing on..... well that's what unsettles me. I can't figure out if it's supposed to be a magazine for Transgendered people, porn shemales, or a showcase for really ugly crossdressers.

The "woman" who publishes it is a lifelong crossdresser in his sixties. He seems hellbent and determined on blurring the line between men in women's clothing and women born male. This is a very big red flag for me given my recent and ever growing frustration with Crossdressers.

Now I'll play nice enough to use their word, and not refer to them as transvestites. Being an intersexed woman who loathes the words "hermaphrodite" and "shemale", I can fully understand a Crossdresser not wanting to be called a word that brings to mind an image of an ugly man in lipstick selling his ass for money, as I'm told by many CD's.

And I try, oh my fucking god how I try, to be non-judgmental and accepting of differences, and to a point I succeed. I accept a crossdresser's right to wear whatever the hell he likes, and do as ever he wants while dolled up, so long as no one is harmed in the process.

(For the record, my definition of "harmed" involves serious bodily injury resulting in irreversible damage or scarring or death, not offended sensibilities disgusted by a man in panties and having a puritan hissy fit.)

But in thelast few years, Crossdressers have been slowly trying to wedge themselves under the transgender umbrella and that's where I draw the line. I even hear Crossdressers claiming dressing is no more a choice for them than being gay is to a gay man or being a woman is for girls like me.

Bullshit.

Crossdressing is a fetish. It is a taboo engaged in by horny men with emasculation fantasies who get off on the sauciness of breaking a taboo of society.

Crossdressers almost universally dress only at home or at special parties. And very few of them can be bothered to do their damnedest to pass as a normal female. Most crossdressers dress slutty for the extra thrill. The feel of women's clothing on their skin gets them off.

And those clothes area goddamn choice. It's their choice, more power to them if it makes them happy, but it's still a goddamn choice. They choose to dress up. They still go to work dressed like any other man, and their biggest fear is their wife and co-workers finding out and calling them a pervert.

Crossdressers are not in any way transgendered. They still identify as men. They don't dress full-time 24/7. And dressing makes them horny.

Anyone who does dress full time and wants to be called a she isn't a Crossdresser. And therein lies the problem.

Non-Op Transsexuals are being used to blur the line between men in dresses and women with penii. Transsexuals who go the full route to surgery have a bad habit of thinking any woman who decides she doesn't need surgery to be happy isn't a real transsexual, let alone a woman.

This attitude is no better than the pseudo-feminist hate mongering against transwomen under the "women born women" dogma we fight so much of late, like in the current local (Vancouver BC Canada) case of Lu's Pharmacy. Google it.

Wannabe feminists who really don't have the first clue what real feminism means, tell trans women we don't count and never will because we weren't born women.

And then those same transwomen turn around and tell non-op transsexuals "You're not getting the operation? Well sorry but you're not really a transwoman then."

And THIS is what has given Crossdressers the foot in the door to do more damage to our fight for simple acknowledgment than any cissexual woman privilege does.

Non-op transsexuals get told they don't count by a group already being told they don't count. We tell them they're just Crossdressers. The ACTUAL crossdressers in turn then latch onto them. You're just like us they say. And we're just like you.

And that's how Crossdressers have gotten themselves underneath the transgender umbrella, making it that much harder for us women to get our equal acknowledgment. A hateful place like Lu's Pharmacy, when arguing their exclusion of transwomen for example, can just point at the men in lingerie and say "See? That's a man in a dress, now you have to prove YOU aren't just a man in a dress too. If we let YOU in, we have to let HIM in."

And this horrid repulsive magazine Transformations is the very definition of this destructive line-blurring bullshit. They have a section on "Transgender news", but fill it with articles about drag queens and men having their cocks nearly cut off in freak accidents.

The young lady who was the centrefold is very clearly a transgirl, having breasts, and very visibly undergone electrolysis, hormone replacement therapy.

But the centrefold spread was called "Boy Girl of the Month".

For every advertisement for products to help feminize skin,aid breast growth, and retard beard growth to help transwomen, there were twice as many ads for sissy slut mags, forced feminization websites and bad tranny porn. The 4 or 5 actual transwomen in the mag looked like women. The 80 or so crossdressers looked like Rocky Horror extras. Half the articles focused on crossdresser fetish clubs, and what few mentions directly there were of transgender or transsexuality were always worded to denigrate us as women and make us sound like effeminate men in drag who just went that extra step and got a boob job.

I'm a blunt and honest woman. And I respect the right of any man or woman of any configuration to do or be as they wish so long as no one is harmed.

But I fucking hate Crossdressers right now, and I want them out from under the Transgender Umbrella. And I want my sister transwomen to stop belittling non-op transwomen, and just accept your non-op sisters so that the CD's can't co-opt them to try and pass their harmless fetish off as an involuntary state of being like transsexuality.

They have a choice. We don't. Stop rejecting our non-op sisters and giving the ones who can choose free reign to make us look like men in dresses. It's hard enough getting accepted by society without being rejected by your own kind and bastardized by the wannabes.

10/10/2009

A Memory Unsettles Me

WARNING; Potential to trigger. Read at your own discretion.

I was reading an entry in Melissa McEwan's excellent series of blogs about rape on Shakesville, and as I read through the various different stories about privilege and rape culture and the excuses society makes, a memory surfaced of an event I had long forgotten.

Those of you who know me and/or have thoroughly read this blog know that I'm a rape survivor. You also know when I was a teenager and full of rage and anger I thought about committing rape out of a desire to hurt a girl who tormented me in my group home.

After I myself was raped, brutally for over three months straight, I often looked back on my youthful rage with shame. I had never acted on the thoughts beforehand, and afterward I knew having survived it I could never be capable of committing it. But in my apparently chronic need to beat myself up and punish myself, I was often wondering if, BEFORE my own rapes, I COULD have gone through with it had the opportunity ever prevented itself. Could I, as an angry rage-filled closeted teenage transgirl trapped in a boy's life, have destroyed another human being with the act of rape before it happened to me?

Sometimes I even convinced myself the rapes I endured were my punishment for ever having pondered committing rape. Karma, the universe balancing things out. Honestly? Sometimes I still DO wonder if what I endured was my punishment for the bad shit I did as a kid out of rage.

But tonight while reading Melissa's blogs, a memory surfaced that reassures me. And at the same time saddens me as I realize from this memory just how pervasive rape culture really is.

I was 15, still living male, still binding my breasts, living in the group home my parents shunted me off to so they wouldn't have to deal with me. The special needs school they shipped us to also had kids from other group homes in the chain, and one of them was Anne-Marie, a Native girl whose parents shipped her off for her slutty behavior/self-harming resulting guilt issues.

One day at lunch Anne-Marie, with I had spent a few weeks flirting kissing, and once boob touching, took me a a couple other boys down under the nearby highway bridge. \

The two boys and I engaged in the expected stupid sex goading boys do while she tookoff her pants and lay back on the ground ten feet away, watching us. One boy stayed away knowing his girlfriend would kill him if she found out. So they goaded me over there.

I loved Anne, I wanted her badly, I hoped maybe the apparently impending sex would be the start of something that would help chip away some of my misery I lived in. So I walked over to her, took off my pants, and straddled her missionary, with my boy bits beginning top push inside her.

That's when she said no.

And I stopped.

And I stood up and walked away while the third boy went over and pretty much fucked her without protest I stood there, refusing to let the girl inside cry and reveal herself beside a tall musclehead who would've beat me up for it.

She started dating the boy who didn't take no for an answer. Itwas test. She declared me a pussy from then on and mocked me. The whole thing had been atest to see which of the boys she liked was man enough for her. I was a pussy to her because I took no for an answer. And for years I never thought about that incident, and I'm not sure why.

But I remember it now, and knowing I had every opportunity in that moment to ignore a girl saying no and commit a rape....

And I stopped when I was asked to.

So I know now, in my heart, that I never could've done it, even when I pondered doing it, I know I never could've gone through with it, and that gives me some peace.

But...

I'm also very disturbed by two things in the memory.

First is that, while I myself took no for an answer, I stood by motionless in my own hurt feelings while my friend did not take no for an answer and fucked a girl I had feelings for, which for all I knew at that moment really was rape. I had no way of knowing she didn't really mean no, I only knew that she said no to both of us. For all I knew he was raping her and I just stood there, and that really really bothers me. Now I find myself wondering if I'd have the courage to interfere if I stumbled across a rape while out, if I'd try and stop or just sit there frightened. I don't like that feeling.

The other thing that bothers me is that it WAS a test. Anne-Marie took boys down to a secluded place, made herself sexually available and set up a scenario in which she could be raped to test our manhood, and in her mind, the one who had the balls to rape her was boyfriend material while the one who took no for an answer was a worthless pussy.

I can only begin to imagine what her parents may have done to her to leave her with the belief that rape is macho and real men don't stop if you say no. In fact I'm horrified by the most likely scenarios that left her with those ideas. I didn't understand it then but I know now that everything that happened under that bridge was a product of rape culture. Rape culture in North Americateaches us that

- No means yes
- Real men take what they want
- Respecting women makes you weak
- She probably wants it

In hindsight the only comfort I take remembering that day is the knowledge that I took no for an answer. If I was the potential teenage rapist I had often feared I may have been before I myself was raped, I would have kept going. I wouldn't have stopped. So I take comfort in that.

But the rest of it disturbs me. It unsettles me deeply. My complacency while my friend was possibly raping her. Her doing it all as a manhood test. The idea that any of it was okay. The idea that a teenage girl thought rape was just what real men do to girls. And the new nagging question that will eat at me for a long time.

I'll never again wonder if I could have committed rape. I know now without a doubt, I'm not just incapable of it now as a survivor, I never WAS capable.

But now I'm always going to wonder, nagging at me, asking myself in the back of my mind, I'll always wonder now...

IfI saw a woman being raped, would I be brave enough to save her? Would I try to stop it?

And what bothers me most of all, is that no matter how much I tell myself yes I would, I know, unless it happens, unless I find myself in the position to stop a rape, I will never truly know if I'm capable of interfering to stop it. I think I would. I know I'd want to. But I honestly don't know if I would have the spine to.

And that shames me more than anything.

God I hate what if's.

Self Defeating Success Story

Today one of my twitter friends, Adult Film actress Wendy Williams, happily and proudly tweeted that her friend and fellow porn star Danielle Fox was coming out of seclusion at long last after recovering from successful SRS.

For any reading this not in the know, SRS is short for Sexual Reconstructive Surgery, the end result of transition for many trans women.

Although I'm Intersexed, I still count myself as a Transwoman because until learning about my IS Biology through medical tests 7 years ago, I believed I was a trans woman and lived as most live, jumping through all the same hoops just for simple recognition.

So for me, hearing one of my sisters has reached and surpassed her goal is always joyous news. So, wanting more info about Danielle, I followed the link in Wendy's tweet.

My first problem is that the link lead to a site about Gay Porn News, on which the story of Danielle re-opening her website was posted.

Trans porn that depicts a transwoman fucking a guy is NOT Gay porn, because regardless of the fact the woman in question might have a penis, the sex shown is heterosexual. I am sick to fucking death of cis gays appropriating transwomen. Classifying Trans Porn as Gay Porn is just another way Cis Gays ungender us, because it gives the uninformed the impression that transwomen really just are gay men who took their feminine side to extremes, and not real women at all.

My second problem is with Danielle herself. But not for being trans.

I'm proud of her for going the distance, achieving her dream. So many transwomen who want SRS never reach that plateau. And having now seen her new pussy I can say she definitely had good work done. There is no absolutely no physical signs that she was ever male.

I also completely understand her having worked in porn all these years. It paid for her transition, it paid for her surgery. It keeps her off street corners and out of alleys. It keeps her fed housed and clothed. Many transwomen have to do porn not only to fund transition but just to survive, since in most of the world we have no human rights protection, no job equality, and can't support ourselves outside of sex work. More power to Danielle in that she actually enjoys her work.

No my problem is with her website.

I have no quarrel with her returning to porn Post-Op. She clearly enjoys sex work and it's provided a good living for her. I see no reason she can't proudly display her post-op body as ever she sees fit.

But why did she have to call her new porn site Sex Change Tranny?

She's post-op now. If she wanted to she could just go do normal straight porn as good as her results were. Not that she has to hide. I'm glad she's proud of being a trans woman.

But outside of porn the word "Tranny" is as bad as the word "Nigger". It's a hate word, a derogatory slur designed to belittle and dehumanize us, to render us little more than perverted caricatures of real human beings. No transwoman likes being called a Tranny and reduced to the mental image of being just a confused gay man in a dress.

Danielle is a porn actress. Given the rationalizations I've heard from porn companies defending the use of terms and words that are universally proven to perpetuate bad stereotypes, I'm sure she did it to both keep her ill-informed cis chaser fans happy and to be easier found in Google searches. After all, the ignorant masturbating perverts who lust after us but can never be bothered to LEARN about us won't put "Trans woman" into a search engine to find T-Porn. They'll always use Tranny or Shemale. Because they can't be bothered to learn the right way to refer to us, and assimilators like Danielle can't find the spine to educate or correct them.

That's my problem with Danielle. She's become a collaborator. She's selling out her sisters in order to assimilate and be accepted without really being accepted. She's perpetuating damaging stereotypes against her own kind and inviting the world to view her as a freak rather than as a real woman. She's doing the haters' work for them, helping to let masturbating tranny chasers blissfully remain ignorant of trans womens' realities so she can keep being a success in porn as a freak novelty act.

She may as well have called her site "Man with implants and mutilated genitals", for all the damage her complacency will do her sisters. Because she sure as hell isn't doing sweet fuck all to teach anyone to see anything beyond the stereotypes.

She's the porn version of a Gangsta Rapper, saying nigger 6 times in every verse of a song. Those who don't know any better will hear these black rappers talking about themselves in this derogatory way and think that makes it perfectly okay and never learn any different until someone gets hurt.

A transwoman perpetuating use of the word Tranny is the same thing. All the cis people who don't know any better will see a transwoman do it think that means it's okay to say it.

Every day I see privileged white teenagers on the bus saying nigga this and nigga that and completely oblivious to the true impact of it. If I were a WOC I'd bitchslap them for it. But I AM a transwoman, and I refuse to let ANYONE, even other transwomen, throw "Tranny" around like it's accurate without telling them where to stick it.

I am Intersexed, and trans and a WOMAN. I am NOT a tranny.

And neither are you Danielle. You are a woman, NOT a "Tranny". Grow a spine and tell your fans that. You're among the most public visible transwomen on earth, and you're beautiful. Use it to TEACH the bastards, not perpetuate their marginalizing us.

Be a porn star all you like. I would if I had the body to pull it off.

But don't be a traitor to your own kind.

10/08/2009

The Threesome That Killed Mister Allen

Those who know me know I'm intersexed. For those not knowledgeable that's the proper medical term for what most people call a hermaphrodite. I'm biologically, genetically, chromasomally female. I have a uterus and an ovary. However I also have a penis and a testicle, and a genetic blood disorder that makes the invasive surgeries required to correct my genitals too life-threatening for any doctor to go near with a ten foot pole. At birth I had an underdeveloped vaginal opening embedded in a small scrotum, which doctors surgically destroyed as per common practice of "fixing" intersexed children by forcibly assigning them one sex rather than allow a living gray area out into their black and white world.

I was kept at the hospital for the four days it took to cauterize the mucous membranes and sew me up. My parents were belatedly informed that I was a boy and raised me as such, blissfully unaware of the years ahead of them of getting pissy at strangers for telling them what a pretty daughter they had and fighting with me over who I was.

I've been wanting to tell the stories of my little lifetime, given my declining health and the knowledge that I likely won't be around a great deal longer. This way some of me survives online with Hedon, and hopefully whoever takes up the role of Shaman when I'm gone understands the things that made me.

I couldn't choose between the two stories I most wanted to share today so I asked my Twitter friends to vote. Voting results said I tell this one. The reason for the preamble about being raised male is to help you understand some of the things in this story.

After Juvey I was all but broken. For those not easily triggered, or who really want to understand that sentence, go here. at 18, I moved out of my parents' home and didn't speak to them for years. I had always planned on coming out as a woman at 18, abandoning the Witless Protection Identity forced on me since birth. But what happened in Juvey delayed me badly. I was scared to be the real me, fearful because, if I could be so violated in Juvey while still living in the boy disguise, what would happen to me if I was out in the world as a transsexual woman? (I believed since Iwas 7 and saw a 60 Minutes story of a Transwoman's surgery that I was trans, as it wasn't until 7 years ago I learned what had been done to me as a baby).

So for 7 years I puttered miserably through life as an unhappy ugly chubby man, with the closest I ever got to being myself happening only when dressing up for the local weekly Goth Night. I didn't attempt sex til I was 23 and that ended badly. I was miserable, but still too afraid to come out and be me.

When I was 24, single and alone with no friends except some people online, I went downtown into Vancouver for New Year's Eve. I didn't drink, and I wasn't much of a partier. I had no friends to chill with. I just didn't want to be alone and suicidal yet another year. I wanted to be around people even if no one was talking to me.

At around 10 I was nursing a mug of Coke at the bar, staring numbly at the tv behind it, when one of the waitress flagged the bartender and pointed at someone and then at me. The bartender refilled my Coke and said it was courtesy of a pair of impossibly beautiful young ladies sitting alone at a booth.

Nervous as all fuck but curious, I went and asked to join them after thanking them. They smiled and invited me to sit down. My insecurity kept waiting for some cruelty, some "pick on the ugly guy" humour, but they seemed genuine and interested. After 20 minutes they invited me up to their room and the 3rd floor.

While managing to keep my shirt on so they wouldn't see either my bindings or the decently large breasts I kept hidden under them, two gorgeous women, looking like A-List porn stars or pin-up models, women who should easily of been out of my league, fucked and sucked both me and each other, passionately, powerfully, wildly. I'd be lying if I didn't admit it was probably among the best sex of my entire life. They got three orgasms out of me and I lost count with them after 5 or so each. It was truly amazing sex.

Now before you write this off as made-up bullshit for Penthouse's letters page, remember this is ME telling the story, and I don't get happy endings. There's almost always a catch.

We went back downstairs to the bar, and sat for another round of drinks. I should've just smiled and kept my mouth shut as they wrote down their phone numbers for me, but my goddamn insecurities reared their ugly head, and I stupidly asked them.

I was probably the least attractive guy in the bar. Chubby, plain looking, surrounded by fit healthy sculpted studs that were easily more attractive. With all those hot guys in the bar.... why did they pick me.

The brunette squeezed my hand, and the blonde, with a completely straight face and no visible sign of knowing how cruel she was about to sound, said,

"Well, because fat homely guys always try harder in bed, studs never care if we get off, fat dudes put in more effort so the cute girls will like them more."

For a few seconds I was still, absorbing what she'd just said. I quietly took out a ten to cover my drink and a tip, handed them back their numbers, and with tears streaming down my fat ugly cheeks I got up and left. They tried to call out for me to come back and they were sorry but I just kept walking.

I got on the Skytrain and went home, crying the whole way and crying myself to sleep.

The next morning I packed up all my guy clothes into a suitcase, along with all my guy crap like aftershave or cologne, and my breast binding. I took them down by the railroad tracks in New West and dumped everything into an old oil drum and burned it, along with every picture of me as a male adult.

Mister Allen was forever put to rest that day, and good fucking riddance. I've never ever looked back. In the end, after having the best sex of my life ruined by an offhanded blow to my fragile self-esteem, I decided the world would find ways to hurt no matter who or what I was, and if I was going to get hurt by insensitive shallow people, I may as fucking well do it with my make-up impeccable, my tits properly displayed, and a woman in the mirror every day.

So that's the story of the Threesome that killed Mister Allen. Maybe it was a mercy killing. Sometimes I wonder what I'd say to those girls if I met them today. I used to think I'd scream at them for being such insensitive cunts, but I'm old and softened now and in hindsight I know they probably honestly didn't realize how that would sound to me, and that I likely hurt them too by just walking away without another word or their numbers.

So I'd probably just hug them, tell them thank you for motivating me past my fears, apologize for walking out, and let them be.

Do I ever wonder what would have happened to me if I'd stayed? Of course. I'm only human. But what if's mean sweet fuck all in the end. The end result is what you have to live with.

I'm Penny Marie Sautereau-Fife. Mister Allen is long dead, if he ever really lived.

It really was amazing sex though, so at least he went out with a bang.

10/05/2009

New Hedon Word of the Week; Nastard

Having recently felt the ire of a celebrity and his rabid fans because I had the utter gall to politely and courteously disagree with his humor about Breast Cancer, I was reminded of one of the many verbal mish-mashes Fran makes. It seemed like a perfectly good basis for a new entry in the Word of the Week series, and so I have given Fran's slip of the tongue a formal definition, dedicated to famed dick-joke aficionado Kevin Smith and his legions of rabid aggressive fans.

Nastard (NAHS tard) Noun - A person, male or female but usually male, who, incapable of maturely accepting even the most polite opinion that differs from their own, will either launch into a vitriolic attack of the person disagreeing, and/or convince others in their thrall to engage in the deplorable behavior for them. Could be considered a contraction of "Nasty Bastard". A Nastard refuses to allow even the tiniest shred of differing opinion into their world view, no matter the reason or basis. Anyone telling a Nastard that they think the Nastard is wrong or misguided in anything will be on the receiving end of juvenile, sexist, often misogynist verbal attacks questioning their sense of humor,their understanding of the facts, their intellect, and even their worthiness of being a life form. The victim of a Nastard will be vilified and verbally crucified in blind defense of the Alpha Nastard's worldview.

Example - When I told Kevin Smith very nicely and courteously that I was going to unfollow him on Twitter because I personally felt that his making jokes about Breast Cancer involving fucking and cumming on women's breasts as being the most valid reason to donate to Cancer research were in poor taste and going a little overboard, he became a total Nastard, sicking his other fans on me en masse on Twitter, resulting in a day of verbal onslaughts calling me a stuck-up humorless breast and sex hating feminist bitch who both doesn't get his humour and makes real women look bad, all because I politely told him his jokes were not to my tastes.

This has been your Hedon Word of the Week. Use it, live it, love it. There's certainly enough people to fit it online.

UNRELATED NOTE - Roman Polanski DRUGGED AND RAPED A 13 YEAR OLD GIRL. Fuck every single Hollywood asshole supporting him like he's an exiled hero. HE RAPED A CHILD. That is the bottom line.

9/13/2009

Church And State Caught Fucking Behind Taco Bell

While websurfing I came across many ignorant articles by Religious haters protesting any attempt to repeal DOMA in the United States. (DOMA for those who don't know is the Defense Of Marriage Act, a law rife with bigotry that basically makes it perpetually okay to refuse same-sex marriage rights).

On THIS article one of the comments insisting that anti-gay marriage movements are NOT bigoted thinking but in fact "based in reality" annoyed me enough to rant. So I did.

I don't know yet if that site will publish my comment, since it (IMHO) so decisively dissects their garbage thinking, so just in case, I'm posting it here on the Hedon Blog as an official statement from the Shaman of Hedon on why religious belief has no goddamn business dictating what the law is. NONE. Not even mine. I don't support Same-Sex Marriage because Hedon teaches that true equality includes GLBT folks, I support it because every human being has the RIGHT to have the exact same human rights as everyone else. So here's the comment I posted.

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Actually, no, there is nothing "realistic" about religious opposition to GLBT equality. It very much IS bigotry, no matter what Catholics and Christians keep telling themselves to believe their ignorance and hate is "spreading God's will" and therefore a just loving act. But when it comes right down to it, those who support DOMA and actively devote time and energy to fighting to prevent GLBT equality, (Often using deplorable scare tactics and never any actual facts), cannot EVER provide ONE SINGLE REASON that is not based in their own personal religious beliefs for denying GLBT equality. NOT ONE. EVER. Every reason for denying it is solely based in religious belief, which by the principle of the intended separation of Church and State should have absolutely no influence on the law. But since Politicians often not only give in TO religious bullying, but often allow their own religious views to dictate their policy, it's clear the separation of Church and State is just a wistful myth; it just doesn't exist, and that's why America has gone to shit.

Churches are spending HUNDREDS of THOUSANDS of dollars to fight Gay Marriage. Money that could be buying blankets for homeless shelters, or funding after school programs for inner city youth, or helping their own goddamn fellow parishes NOT have to close down for lack of funds.

Tell me how those priorities aren't seriously misguided?

The Bible says you can sell your daughter into slavery and stone your neighbor to death if he works on the Sabbath. I don't see Christians fanatically preaching THOSE quotes left right and center, do you? No, because they know no one would condone that garbage. But most people fear what they don't understand, so Christian blowhards will happily misquote the Bible horribly to fear-monger about gay folks to scare people into supporting them.

ANY Religious objection to legalizing Gay Marriage is bigotry and bullying. That is a inarguable FACT.

The California businessman who spent the most money helping fight Prop 8 is divorcing his wife after HE cheated on her and is desperately throwing money at a legal defense aimed at making sure she's left all but destitute. Is that the "sanctity of marriage" you nutcases are fighting so hard to protect?

Same Sex Marriage has been legal in Canada for four years. Guess what? Our society has yet to collapse! In fact, the economy up here has been saved from reaching the underground shithole levels that America's has because of the income the government generates from Gay Marriage; tourism, license fees, new business opportunities for gay friendly businesses that pay taxes. Cases of sexual assault on children have NOT gone up because we allowed gays to marry. (Not at all surprising since more pedophiles are heterosexual practicing Catholics than are ever gay men). Gay marriage has done Canada nothing but good. Sulfur and ash has not fallen from the sky. People are not turning into salt. My wife has helped me grow as a human being and helped my health and self-esteem improve greatly.

There is no logic, sanity, or compassion in the Religious Right's attacks on equality. And yes, equality, not special rights. To be able to marry the one you love is a HUMAN right, not a special right.

I dare any Christian/Catholic/Muslim/Jew/Other to give one ONE SINGLE VALID REASON BASED SOLELY IN FACT THAT HAS ABSOLUTELY NO BASIS IN ANY RELIGIOUS BELIEF WHATSOEVER why GLBT folks should be denied their human rights.

In TWELVE years of my asking bible thumpers that question, not a single one has every succeeded in answering it without deferring to their faith. NOT ONE. And I've asked thousands.

If you condemn another human being for not sharing your beliefs,or for being different than you, you're a bigot, period. You can't argue your way out of it with fancy language. No matter what nice little platitudes you tell yourself to convince yourself it's okay to hate, it's still hate.

God loves. Man kills.

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As a personal aside, I've said what I'm about to say next in comments sections all over the web for years, but I feel given the rest of this blog I ought to restate it here.

THREE INDISPUTABLE FACTS ABOUT BIBLE PROOF THAT HOMOSEXUALITY IS WRONG.

1) Leviticus 18:22 is translated: "Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination."

This is the quote singularly most often used as a weapon of hate against Homosexuality. The problem is that NO ONE on this earth knows the full context or dialogue of the original Aramaic, a very big issue given that the Bible has been translated and re-translated so many times that there is absolutely NO possible way that it speaks exactly the same message as the original, due to the fallibility of human beings doing the translating and the inescapable risk of broken-telephone syndrome. The other problem is that it takes very little effort to research how the english language has evolved and changed since the last major translation that produced this quote. in THAT day and age? the word "lie" had no connection to the word "lay". Lay was the ONLY word in the King's English that meant laying down or laying in bed. To Lie meant ONLY to be dishonest. In light of this inarguable fact of grammar and language of the time, the quote therefore has absolutely nothing to do with sexuality at all. Especially given that the Bible teaches that women are property, not people. So this quote is not telling you "If you're a man, don't fuck other men", it's the Bible equivalent of "Bros before Ho's dude."

2) Sodom and Gommorah were not destroyed because of homosexual behavior. Certainly not in a book that condones Incest, Bigamy, and slaughtering a race of people who don't follow God to steal their land because God says it's a Holy Land just for his children, ignoring the idea that ALL men were God's children. No, S & G were destroyed because they were bad hosts, in the desert, a crime of unforgivable apathy when being an inattentive host can cause a traveler's death in the desert.

3) There is absolutely NOTHING written in ANY version of the Bible ANYWHERE that mentions, directly or indirectly, pro or con, Lesbian love or transsexuality. The closest it ever comes to either is forbidding MEN to wear a woman's clothing, but even that would only apply to Crossdressers. Since a Transsexual woman is a woman in mind and soul, she is NOT a man wearing women's garments, she's a woman, period. And this doesn't cover Female-To-Male transsexuals at ALL.

So let's review.
- The Quote most often used to condemn Homosexuality has nothing to do with sex or sexuality, it's about dishonesty.
- The chapters on Sodom and Gomorrah are about the sin of leaving travelers helpless to the elements in the desert, not punishment for sex.
- The Bible CONDONES Incest, (Cain and his wife, Noah and his immediate family repopulating earth all on their own, King Solomon and his daughters), Bigamy, (Joseph of the Coat Of Many Colors is just ONE example), and Racial Genocide, (God sending the Jews to wipe out Palestine's people and steal it as their own because the Palestinians did not worship him), but says NOTHING about Homosexuality being wrong that isn't read falsely into it through misquoting and misinterpreting the translation's grammar context.
- And the Bible says absolutely NOT ONE WORD AT ALL about Lesbianism, Bisexuality, or Transsexuality, and can at BEST vaguely be claimed to be disdainful of Crossdressing.

The entire Bible Basis for Anti-Gay rhetoric is based on either misread translations or outright non-existent messages, while blithely ignoring blatant examples of the Bible condoning deplorable behavior.

And the only argument any Bible Thumping loudmouth windbag has EVER offered in defense of these facts is "You have no right to question the Word of God!". Except the Bible was written by MEN, not God. Men who claimed they spoke on God's behalf, men who were fallible, men who were influenced by superstition, fear, and a very limited understanding of how the world worked.

9/11/2009

Examining Male Idiocy

We all know men are generally idiots. We know that men have a seemingly instinctive belief that it's their privilege and right to harass, hit on, and paw at women. Male privilege lets men believe women's only reason for existing is to fawn over them and spread their legs at the flash of a smile.

This of course, is not new. Every woman knows this.

Online it's worse. At least in real life, most men realize they have to try to at least appear to be civilized and respectful in public, and save their gropey gropey mindset for private situations in offices or at drunken nightclub outings.

But on the good old interwebs, that "Someone might see me being a douche" safety net goes bye bye. Every day over on MySpace I get around 5 messages a day from single assholes who can't be bothered to read the big uppercase "NO MEN" in my profile and message me proposing marriage or asking for sex outright, and the messages are ALWAYS worded in a way that says they have no doubt in their minds that I'll jump at the chance. And of course, if I rightfully get grumpy at their ignorant come ons, they never apologize for their presumptions, they cuss at me and call me a stuck-up tightass bitch for not wanting them.

Male privilege. It lets them believe that any woman offended by them being rude, pushy, obnoxious, etcetera, is the one who has the problem. After all, we're the women, we exist for their needs, how dare we even consider refusing their charms?

Worse are the ones who DO read the "NO MEN" disclaimer and decide it's not serious. You know, the guy who thinks a lesbian is just a woman who has not yet experienced HIS magical cock, and if she'd just fuck him she'd never munch carpet again. Which is a terribly odd contradiction to how much men WANT to watch women lick pussy. But hey, Men's thinking has never made much sense.

As on example, one such asshat messaged me on Smutvibes some time ago, doing exactly that. He seemed utterly convinced that I only put "NO MEN"in my profile to encourage real men to pursue me and overcome my "defense mechanism".

This is the "About Me" of his profile. I've been kind enough to not include his username or his publicly offered msn address.

"I am real. I like women. I don't like men. I especially don't like men who dress as women, or men who pretend they are women. If I was going to pretend to be anything (and dress up for it) I would pick astronaut, or maybe jet-pilot... a flight suit has GOT to be more awesome than a thong. If you are a "lesbian" who complains in their headline that "men can't read" and "don't add me..." well, I did it because you are probably fake, and it's fun to annoy you. If you are a real woman, and ladies you have to prove it, we can chat and see where it goes. I am funny, smart, sexy, and... did I say funny?"

Okay, let's dissect this stunning example of how damn near every male mind on the internet thinks.

He thinks he's being funny and cute with his quasi-homophobic sexism. His about me shows three clear examples of the male privilege assumptions most men use to justify objectifying and harassing us.

1) "If you are a "lesbian" who complains in their headline that "men can't read" and "don't add me..." well, I did it because you are probably fake,"

- The male assumption that any woman who claims to be a lesbian is probably lying, faking, or hasn't had the right man fuck her yet. Men just can't accept that lesbians really exist. Men remain firmly convinced that there IS no such thing as a woman who is completely and utterly uninterested in them, because they are after all, men, and we as women only exist to meet their needs anyway right?

2) "If you are a real woman, and ladies you have to prove it, we can chat and see where it goes."

- Again, the male presumption is that all the responsibility is on the woman. He absolves himself of responsibility for his harassing behavior messaging women rudely by putting the onus on the woman to prove she's real, ignoring the fact she likely had no interest in him to begin with and thus no obligation to prove anything to him. He also again ignores the lesbian idea, assuming that once these women prove to his satisfaction that they are in fact women, that they will naturally want to hook up with him for being diligent enough to make them prove their validity to him. It's a reverse method of dehumanizing the woman. By demanding that the woman is obligated to prove her identity, he's essentially suggesting she doesn't really have one, and dismissing her identity as invalid.

3) "I am funny, smart, sexy, and... did I say funny?"

- And the icing on the rancid cake, the male shrugs off his behavior thus far by insisting he's rife with attractive charming qualities that the rest of his profile has already proven he sorely lacks. He thinks that his dehumanizing of women, his dismissal of their identity and sexuality, his positioning women to have to be the ones doing all the work to be deemed worthy of his attention, is all just part of his charm and sex appeal. In his mind, none of his bad behavior is wrong, women deserve to be treated as he treats them, and dammit, they should be attracted to and aroused by his misogyny. He also thinks his sexist rhetoric is funny, which exemplifies the male tendency to find amusement in the demeaning of women.

I wish I fully understood what keeps men believing this crap is okay, why they think there's nothing wrong with it, why they think it's their god-given right to do so. I KNOW it's possible for men to be better than that. The (very) small circle of men I fuck are enlightened, intelligent, and respectful, and have never presumed anything with me. That's why I'm so goddamn picky about men. There are so few good ones. But there ARE good ones.

Of course the good ones will often be chastised by all the assholes as not being real men, or not manly enough, etc etc. Apparently all the things about men we despise as women are what men generally believe makes them "real" men.

Pity they're all so wrong. The world's male population is 1% real men, and 99% obnoxious little boys in mens bodies.

9/10/2009

Wishing to Understand the Cruelty of my own Mind.

This was going to be the second "New Hedon Word of the Week" post, but I'm numb today and I can't think up a new word. I'd had a rotten week and I'm finding it difficult to be mirthful.

Our oldest male cat Alex died on Monday, after a weekend of pain and suffering.

We called 15 different local Vets. Not ONE would treat him. Not unless we paid half the surgery cost up front. That means since we couldn't afford $400 on the spot, we had to watch Alex die, untreated. All we could do was make him as comfortable as possible and wait for him to stop fighting. We buried him under the mint bush.

So I'm angry this week to begin with. Angry that money was a higher priority to 15 goddamned ANIMAL DOCTORS than making sure AN ANIMAL wouldn't die. Why be a vet at all if the care of a sick animal isn't your top priority?

So I wasn't really in the best state of mind to begin with. Then the week got worse.

Someone I idolized poked giant gaping holes in my self-esteem. Which ruined for me the otherwise kickass experience of two popular pornstars saying things to me unsolicited that should have seriously boosted it.

I won't name them, that would be bragging. One thinks I'm cute and sweet for making her a virtual tee-shirt in support of her friend, the other said she'd fuck me because I used an old term no one uses anymore. For a chubby average looking intersexed girl whose only good feature is a giant natural rack, that should've utterly made my week better. Instead, anger at vets, and disappointment that an idol could care less about a milestone in my life that I partially credited her for helping me achieve made the honest compliments from beautiful women feel bittersweet.

Two beautiful women, women that men the world over lust after, and would give anything to even just meet and talk let alone fuck them...... they said nice things to me without being coaxed or goaded or solicited to. They said them because they wanted to, and meant them. And I should be fucking over the moon about it. I'm an overweight ugly woman with a penis, how often do the beautiful people EVER notice a girl like me without being nasty?

I should be ecstatic. I should be bragging. I should be looking into a plane ticket to California to call the one girl's bluff and see if she actually would fuck me. But somehow I just feel uglier, emptier, and I don't know why. My own mind is far crueller to me than anyone else ever is.

It can't even let me enjoy nice compliments from nice people.

I think I'll go back to bed, before this mental flagellation gets any worse, and just try to be relieved that Alex isn't suffering, and happy that pornstars think I rock.

9/04/2009

It was just a joke...

DISCLAIMER; I am not angry at Meandering Muse. She's a cool badass chickie and I consider her a friend on the internet. I'm posting this blog entry to answer her confusion in her most recent blog, here, as to why some of her trans readers got upset that she chose to use the word "tranny" instead of "transgendered" in what she believed was a cute funny way. Now I know some of my sisters, (you know who you are), would immediately write off Muse as just another privileged cis bitch who doesn't understand us and blah blah hate hate etc etc, but I know Muse is a cool intelligent woman who honestly meant well. Not understanding why a word hurts is NOT the same as intentionally seeking to hurt you with it. I love my grumpy T-sisters on Twitter but not every cis woman who makes a verbal fuck-up is out to bury us. So after reading Muse's latest blog, read as follows my polite and calm explanation to her as to why someone got pissed off at her over the word "tranny".

To my friend Meandering Muse

Since you aren't a transwoman hon you don't have the first person experience to understand this, but, the problem with "tranny" is that it's Nigger. Kike. Gook. Fag. It's a hate word, a weapon word. It cannot be reclaimed or disarmed, and you cannot use it as a joke or a cutesy shortcut because "transgendered" sounds too "clinical and scientific and boring."

If you, as a cis woman use it, no matter how light-hearted your intent sweetie, you're GOING to piss transfolk off.

Secondly, "transgender" does in fact cover those who never transition or have surgery, because it's a blanket term invented by Crossdressers to co-opt the gender issues of various transsexuals and intersex folks, in order to pass off their silly harmless sexual fetish as something they cannot control the same way a transsexual can't change the gender gap between their body and brain without medical assistance.

While I know enough to know that you as a cis lesbian woman probably did genuinely believe you were being cute and can't understand why anyone would be upset, because of your own privilege, (and yes, even lesbians have privilege over transwomen), I sadly know several embittered transwomen (whom I love anyway) who've gotten the shaft from life more than I have in regards to dealing with the privileged assumptions of cis women, some openly haters, some who just don't fully understand their own language mistakes.

You cannot use "tranny" to crack a joke or be cute. You're not trans. You haven't earned the right. You may as well be a white man cracking nigger jokes. Would you think he was really just trying to be cute? And even if in his ignorance of how it really feels to a POC to be called nigger he honestly did think he was only being cute and funny, would that excuse his misinformed use of the word?

No one can ever safely use a weaponized hate word a funny cuteness. Someone will always take offense to it. There IS no safe way to use a hate word cutely. I hope you can understand why the other person or persons got so upset with you now that I've explained it to you calmly without yelling.

I greatly appreciate your supportiveness to trans/is issues, but that supportiveness is not an excuse to use a word that hurts us as joking cuteness. There is no free pass for hatespeech, not even that which was genuinely intended to just be funny.

It's the little things sweetie. The little things like this are a big part of what stops people from changing.

After all, doesn't it horrify you every time some idiot college jock cracks a "joke" about rape like it's really no big deal?

A non-trans saying the word tranny as a cute joke is a very big deal to transfolk. And no matter how good the intention, no good can come of doing it.

PERSONAL ASIDE; As I was typing this, I find it very disturbing that the spellchecker happily identified tranny as a possibly misspelled word, (which is good), but it never once flagged nigger or any of the other racist words I cited as examples of how hateful a word Tranny is. So.... does this mean "Nigger" is actually in the goddamn dictionary??? WTF???

9/03/2009

New Hedon Word of the Week; Femisogynist

Here in the Trinity of Hedon, we have our own words and terms for some things. And sometimes in life, something hurts your brain so much that no existing language appropriately explains it. So I as the Shaman invent a completely new word to define the brain hurting idea.

My first weekly entry in this series is Femisogenyst, a combination of Feminist and Misogynist. It was inspired by the mind-bogglingly stupid exclusionary policies of Lu's Pharmacy For Women here in Vancouver B.C. Canada.

Explanatory Links for background information on the Lu's issue.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.

With the background information out of the way, I proudly present the first ever Musings From Hedon New Word of the Week!

Femisogynist, (feh mih SAW jeh nist), Noun; A woman practicing a severely outdated and extremely aggressive form of exclusionary feminism that, instead of seeking true universal equality like true feminism should, instead redirects the sexist, bigoted and misogynist oppression they often face in life onto marginalized and vulnerable groups they view as lesser or not counting. A Femisogynist is a very narrow minded and hyper hypocritical woman who in their bigoted and hateful exclusion of transsexual and intersexed women, often citing a "women born women are the only REAL women" philosophy, fail to realize that they are treating these marginalized and vulnerable women with the exact same hateful, dehumanizing, belittling sexist patriarchal repression that they claim to be against, hiding behind gender priveledge as having been biologically female with no genital defects from birth as their excuse and justification for refusing to allow any possibility of accepting or including transwomen in their definition of who counts as a woman.

Example - "The Vancouver Womens Health collective thinks they are a progressive feminist organization, but their Femisogynist policies excluding transwomen show them to be hateful, shallow, narrow-minded and hypocritical because they inflict upon transpeople the same oppressive sexism they claim to fight."

This has been your New Hedon Word of the Week. Use it proudly and often when dealing with loud hateful cissexual women.

Sharing My Survival.

Content warning; This account contains very graphic descriptions of sexual assault. If you have been assaulted, it could be triggering. I wrote it at my Rape Counselor's suggestion as a method of purging it, and share it in the hopes that it may somehow help other survivors of sexual trauma not feel alone.

Read at your own discretion.

***************************************

The Rapes.

When I was in my teens, I had severe anger management issues. After years of abuse from my parents, who at best were indifferent to me, and at worst, would harshly yell, berate, and/or smack me around if I tried to discuss my feelings of being a girl, and of getting beaten up at school for being different, I reached a point where I was so bitter and angry that I had no control over my temper, and would fly off the handle at often minimal irritations.

At age 15, my parents put me into a Group Home, Megan House, in Scarborough Ontario. The staff there were unsympathetic and ineffectual, blaming my anger on things that had nothing to do with it and ignoring my claims of what really caused it. A week before turning 16, I got into a huge fistfight with a Staff member and was arrested. I was sentenced to a term in Young Offender Detention, or what Americans would call Juvey.

During my teens, I used extra wide Tensor bandages to keep my breasts taped down. I hated hiding them, since I felt they vindicated my belief I was a girl, but I also knew if they were visible, I'd get my ass kicked. The first few places I was in during my sentence, I was allowed to keep the binding because the staff of those places didn't want to deal with the inevitable crap that would come of my being visible.

However, after about 11 months, I got into another fight with a guard, and, being past 16 now, got Phase 2 time added to my sentence. I was transferred to Metro Toronto West Detention Centre.

The guards here were completely unsympathetic to my situation. They took away my binding, claiming I would use it as a weapon, despite my pleas. Then, caring nothing for the possible consequences, put me into a ward full of Hard-timers. Teenage Gangsta boys, criminals, violent kids with no remorse, who hadn't touched a girl in months, and me looking like a teenage Winona Ryder.

It took 3 days before it happened. I had expected to be beaten up, as a freak, but I never expected what they did to me. I didn't think such things happened in Juvey, only in Adult prisons.

I was in the shower, thinking no one had seen me go in while everyone was distracted by two boys beating a third up. Figuring they'd all be caught up watching the fight, and having not showered yet out of fear of a beating, I snuck in to quickly shower before bed-check.

I wasn't paying attention when my face suddenly impacted the wall. Two white boys were ramming my face into the wall. After a half dozen impacts, I got weak-kneed and dizzy, and there was blood gushing from my right eyebrow. The two boys then held me flat against the wall, while 5 more boys began taking turns with me.

My legs were being held apart, while each boy, (one white, two black, one East Indian and one Asian boy), forced his.... forced his way into my rear end, tearing me open in multiple places. After a few minutes I blacked out, because I don't remember when it ended, or how long it lasted. I just remember the guards shaking me awake in the shower, a stream of blood still trickling from back there to the shower drain.

I asked to go to the hospital but the guards scoffed. They ordered me to dry off and get dressed, and put me in my cell. One of the boys from the shower, the East Indian, was my cellmate, and he repeated the violation every night for 3 months until I got another transfer. I tried to fight him for 4 nights straight, but he'd always beat on me until I couldn't resist. by the 5th night, I just started laying still so it would hurt less, biting my pillow so he wouldn't get the thrill of hearing me scream.

My parents accepted an "out of court" settlement from the prison when I tried to seek legal action. It would better have been called a bribe. The West didn't want it known their staff had such indifference to these kinds of situations, or even that these kinds of situations happened. My parents didn't want their freak child becoming public knowledge. I was forced to sign an agreement absolving The West of all liability. So as soon as I was able, I left home. I no longer communicate with the majority of my family.

18 years later and I still have nightmares. Every single night. I'm a chronic insomniac, and when I do sleep, I sleep during the day, because I'm afraid to sleep in the dark, alone. I've been in counseling for trauma survival for 3 years now, at WAVAW, or Women Against Violence Against Women. The counseling has helped me a lot, but there's still a lot of work to do before I can truly let it go and move on.

It was 6 years before I was able to attempt to be intimate with anyone. It was another 3 before I finally told someone what had happened, and sought counseling.

I have permanent physical reminders of the horror.

My right eyebrow suffered permanent nerve damage, and naturally droops, which is visible enough that I see it every time I look into the mirror.

I cannot have a bowel movement comfortably. My sphincter and anus suffered so much tearing and damage there there is permanent nerve, tissue, and muscle damage. My sphincter cannot stretch much and does not accommodate movements easily, and i frequently suffer from small stress tears called "fissures". I often see red water before I flush, and suffer frequent dizzy spells from the blood loss.

But despite all of this, despite the trauma, the scars, the damage, the nightmares, I survived. I'm still here. They hurt me, they violated me, but I am still here.

I survived, and to other survivors of this horrible violation of a woman's very core, I say this;

We're still alive. They didn't break us. We beat them, because we live. Never forget that we are survivors, and we are stronger than the cowards who hurt us. We have power over our own destinies, not them.

Rape Crisis Resources.

http://www.wavaw.ca/ (Where I got my Counseling, Vancouver BC Canada)
http://www.rapecrisis.org.nz (New Zealand)
www.feminist.org/911/resources.html
http://www.angelfire.com/va3/was/Rape_Crisis_English.html
http://www.aardvarc.org/
http://www.resourcesforwomen.com/rape.htm

Personal Reccomendation; If you live in Vancouver BC Canada, call WAVAW, do not EVER seek help from Vancouver Rape Relief. Unless you look like June Cleaver and were a virgin at the time of rape, these Femisogenyst women will NOT be supportive of you.

For other resources, or local help lines, consult Yahoo Web Search, or Consult your local Telephone directory.

This account may be copied and shared with my express permission. For permission to use this account, please e-mail me at theaerie@shaw.ca

- Penny Sautereau-Fife

8/29/2009

About Hedon; Wedding Vows

The vows for a Hedon Circle Binding.

(All parties actually being bound strip completely nude, though this is NOT obligatory. The Shaman or a Priestess presides, telling each party what to say and do. If only two parties, they join hands completely, if 3 or more, they hold hands in a circle. The person to the immediate left of the Shaman/Priestess goes First. The first party speaks the first sentence, beginning with an id and a declaration of their willingness to be here)

- My name is (Your full name here), and I stand here of my own will and choice.

(Other party or parties, in clockwise order from the first, repeat)

- I stand here, naked and vulnerable, before all who may be present and in the gaze of Hedon, Mother of all things, nothing to hide, my heart exposed.

(Again, this is repeated Clockwise)

- The Circle of my heart has many links in it's chain, and this day I add one more, as I declare my eternal love and need for (State all relevant names)

(Repeated again)

- I add you to the Circle of my heart, equal among all whom I love, cherished and desired, no one loved more, no one loved less, all loved equally yet differently. I add you to my family, and to my protection, guidance, support and companionship.

(Repeated again)

- (State relevant first names), I give to your for all time a piece of my living heart. It belongs now to you, an eternal part of the whole of my being. I trust you with this sliver of my heart and soul, and have faith in you not to wound it with lies, deceit or malice.

(Repeated Again)

- With all this vowed, sworn before my Goddess and my heart, I share with you my blood, and to your heart I thus forever bind.
(Each person, after stating THIS sentence, pricks their left ring finger with a pin, and lets each love in the binding taste a droplet)

- (State Relevant names one last time), now and forever, my wife, my sister, my lover, my friend, I love you and always will, no matter how much our circle grows or shrinks.

(The ceremony concludes, all involved are now married in the Circle of the Heart.

About Hedon; Our Holidays

Hedon celebrates only four official holidays. Other celebrations focus on Circling parties, (Think Wedding reception), birthdays, and Rememory, (a wake celebrating the deceased's life).

But the 4 official Hedon holidays are as follows.

The Green Womb

- Held every February 28th to March 2nd. Hedon "New Year" for lack of a better term. A celebration of the Green (Nature) Waking from it's sleep, giving new life to the world. It's also a celebration of the gift of love, be it romantic or familial.

The Long Light

- A 3 day festival from June 13th to 15th, celebrating the dawning of summer. A time to cherish family and revel in appreciation of the gifts of being alive.

The Shadowed Souls' Festival

- Running from October 28th to November third, this is an 8 day festival of many points. You could think of it as a union of Remembrance Day/Veteran's Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and the Day of the Dead. Shadowed Souls celebrates the continuing cycle of the Green as it prepares to sleep going into winter, when the world dreams it's dusk and the Green rests until spring. It's a time for cherishing your living family and honoring those no longer with us.

The Winter Harvest

- A symbolic harvest, held from December 23rd to 28th, wherein we "harvest" the love we've sown all year, with our lovers, our family, and our Circle. We sow the seeds of this love all year in the kindness and affection we give our cherished ones, and come the Harvest we reap that love in a time of joy and giving.

About Hedon; Views On The Other Views

VII; Hedon's Stances

On War; There is no justifiable reason to pick a fight. Never START a war, but never surrender if your home and family is being bullied. Fighting back is acceptable to survive. The Blood Night proved that.

On Christianity; No repression ever serves a constructive purpose. Used too often to hurt and control. Generally best avoided if possible. Granted there are some very good and noble Christians in the world who find the good in the religion and live by it, but sadly they aren't the ones most people encounter. Christianity's public face is worn by small-minded bullies who don't understand the nature of what they claim to serve. Avoid the loud bullying Christians, and open your heart to the kind ones.

On Islam; The oppression and abuse of women as non-entities existing only to serve men is enshrined in it's principles. Best avoided if possible. Again, I've met and loved good wise Muslim people who find the good in the religion and live by it, and these are people worth knowing, but the bullies of Islam who abuse the faith without ever understanding it are far more dangerous than those of Christianity, and finding yourself at odds with an extremist could get you killed.

On Judaism; As a people they've suffered horribly, as a religion they're not much different from Christianity. Used their faith to justify stealing an entire country because an antique storybook says God wanted them to have it. Sympathy for their persecution by others should not excuse their own persecution oF others. So to Hedon, they're not a race, just people following another religion. No better or worse than any other human, and no more deserving of special status above other people than anyone else is. Treat like any other normal human being.

On Buhddism; A nice peaceful religion I respect, aside of it's negative stance on Homosexuality.

On Hinduism; I've never been verbally assailed on a street corner or condemned to eternal damnation by any Hindu I ever met. Plus their gods just look really cool. I'm well aware that many Sihks are disgusted by varying sexualities and such but they're far more private about it, there are no Hindu/Sihk organizations dedicated solely to restricting homosexual rights. There's no Sihk Fred Phelps picketing funerals. So I have no issues with them, they can be a very beautiful faith.

On Kabbalah; A fad as far as I can tell, based on a real faith being perverted by bored celebrities.

On Scientology; I personally proved Scientology a fraud a few years ago, and any religion founded on a dare and based on a fiction novel isn't ever to be taken seriously. L. Ron Hubbard was a consumate bullshitter, who founded Scientology because Steve Allen bet him he couldn't create a religion on the Tonight show half a century ago. His life was a constant string of bullshit stories and it's resulted in a creepy greedy dangerous cult. And if you don't believe me about L. Ron, go read THIS.

On the Mormons; Mormonism is utter bullshit, founded by a creep who fooled near an entire town into believing God gave him silver tablets ordering men to have multiple wives, which of course mysteriously disintegrated before anyone else could see them. It's the bad joke of Christianity that even the Vatican mocks and laughs at.

On Gor; See above. Also, ew ew ew ew ew. Avoid at all costs, hopefully without vomiting. Also, ew. The fact this bullshit is becoming a real way of life perverts the love and trust that true BDSM is built on, and is everything the ignorant fear about BDSM that real BDSM has never been.

On Televangelism; Ugh, just Ugh. Nothing but greasy white people sucking money from the wallets of stupid people.

On Religion in Politics; Why should Religion be kept very far away from politics? Two reasons. 1) George W. Bush. 2) Iraq.

On Orgies; Not a healthy expression of sex unless everyone present cares about each other. Even then, they're rarely a good idea with good results. Not discouraged so much as just not recommended.

On Monogamy; Not a natural state for human beings honestly but if it feels right to you it's fine with us.

On Bigamy/Polygamy Versus Polyamory; Bigamy/Polygamy is a patriarchal man marrying several women to subjugate for his selfish needs. Polyamory is a group of PEOPLE, of any sex, freely and truly all equally loving and caring for one another. There is a HUGE difference.

On HedonISM; As stated at the begininng, Hedonism is a bullshit philosophy of "Pleasure comes first" that's nothing more than an excuse for rich people to fly to the Caribean every summer to have orgies at tropical resorts.

On Pornography; It isn't always exploitative, and so long as everyone involved is freely choosing to do so, willing, and enjoying their work, there's nothing wrong with it. Once you start doing it to express violence or disrespectful depictions of nature's greatest pleasure, or performing to feed a drug habit, you've crossed the line into visual poison.

On Drugs; Marijuana isn't a drug. It's a healing herb. Mushrooms grow naturally. Those are acceptable. Theraputic and legal medications are fine, in moderation. Anything illegal that requires a lot of processing and can KILL you? Stay away from it.

On Sex Education; We're for it. Teach our kids not to be fucking idiots. STD's will drop heavily if we just stop being so damned repressed about talking to our children.

On Transsexuality; Nature can screw up, mostly due to Man's meddling with it. If you're a woman, regardless of having a male body, or vice-versa, then BE who you are, and fix it however you need to physically to feel right.

On Abortion; Wouldn't be neccessary at all if not for religious sexual repression and rape. Personally I believe it's only acceptable if you were raped, but prefer it be an absolute last resort. The Hedon stance is that your body is your own, and so is the choice, but it's a choice you should NEVER make unless there really IS no other choice. If you're pregnant solely because you were stupid enough to not use protection and don't want a child, let it be adopted.

On Homosexuality; No such thing. There's only who you love. Homosexuality is a myth created by Religion to segregate people they view as lesser. Same-Sex attraction is a neccessity in nature, you can find it in most species. It's a population control tool. It's SUPPOSED to exist.

(Side note; I love how before it was widely known that animals have Gay Sex, Christians cited Gay was evil because only humans did it, and it wasn't anywhere else in nature. Now that it's commonly known that animals have gay sex, suddenly gay sex is wrong BECAUSE animals do it and humans are supposed to be "Better than that". Hypocrites.)
Well, there it is. I've done my part for you, I've given you another option. What you choose to do with what you've read is completely up to you, whether that means you choose to believe or choose to call it garbage. The choice was always yours, and always should be.

The Mother's Love Warm you. Go in Peace.

- Penny Sautereau-Fife, Shaman Of Hedon.

About Hedon; Other Matters

V; Hedon Customs

- Hedon has no church, only it's symbolic Temple and, fates be kind, a temple in the real world someday. This Temple is not for worship either, it's a gathering place for community, a place to meet and talk, share ideas and stories, potluck community meals, make friends, and find a place to feel you belong. But there is no Mass, no sunday service. At best the Shaman or a Priestess may occasionally speak to those gathered about Hedon, telling the stories that once made a community a wondrous place. But every faith has it's customs, every people it's traditions. Some I have decided aren't needed or relevant in today's world as they were in the old home, but there are those that still matter.

A Circle Binding; A wedding of sorts. When you meet someone you fall in love with, and wish to declare to all that another link has been forged in the chain that represents the Circle Of Your Heart, a Circle Binding is performed to "Marry" that person permanently into your polyamory. It's a siimple ceremony, done in the nude, repeating vows offered by the Shaman or a Priestess, to declare before Hedon and all present that you love each other.

Sexual Healing; No, not the Marvin Gaye song. Sex is a powerful tool, an act that creates energy, and in the right hands, it can be used to heal most any hurt that weighs on your heart, and even ease some physical ailments. It isn't something to be abused, or used frivolously in this context, as there are MANY other methods to heal, but it IS a choice.

Communal Cuddling; Simply as it sounds. Cuddling non-sexually with those around you. A simple warm hug does wonders.

VI; Hedon Terms

Hedon; The Goddess, a Trinity that watches her children.

The Mother; Hedon's nurturing aspect, the Mother of All Things, who guides us with love and compassion.

The Lover; Hedon's passionate aspect, the Lover of ALL Good, who helps us appreciate passion and life, who shows us how to live with zeal and joy.

The Walker; Hedon's masculine aspect, the Walker of the Wolves, who watches and teaches, protects and shows us how to mind the world around us.

The Mother's Love Warm you; A common Hedon farewell, said to one you care for dearly when you part company at any time, meant to express a desire that your loved ones are always warm in their heart.

Be Well & Safe; Another common farewell, a more generalized term expressing a wish for those you meet to be healthy and free of harm.

Loved Be; A term of affection, usually reserved for those you share your heart with intimately.

Circle Of The Heart; the circle of lovers with whom you share your deepest love in your heart, wives and husbands for lack of a better term, or boyfriends and girlfriends. Basically the Heart-Circle is everyone you are in love with.

The Fallen; Our slaughtered ancestors. Always remember them.

The Dreamers; Those who dream of Hedon, who already live their lives in the Hedon way but can't put a name to what they feel.

The Blood Night; The night they came and killed us all.

The Lost; My wife believes the Walkers did in fact manage to save a few children during the Slaughter and flee the isle. In her dreams she remembers it. The lost are those who would have been secretly taught about Hedon from birth, waiting for the return.

The Birthplace; The Island near Greece we believe was once Hedon.

The Green; Nature, the natural world, plants and animals.

About Hedon; Precepts And Tenets

III; The Precepts of Hedon

Precepts are guidelines, not absolute rules. These are Hedon's suggestions for living a good life. Unlike the Tenets which follow this section, the precepts are not absolutes.

Precept I; A true heart needs no rewards.
- This is to say that you ought to help people for the sake of helping them, not to get something for it. If someone offers you a reward however there is no ill intent in politely accepting it. If a reward is offered freely there is no reason to be rude and decline, unless the reward is greater than the giver can afford to give, in which case you should always decline politely. But you never ever should ASK for remuneration.

Precept II; Care for those around you.
- This is to say that the people you meet and live around are living breathing feeling creatures like yourself, and should be treated kindly, without excess or insincerity. And only until they treat you with malice or unkindness, after which you need only be civil and otherwise ignore them.

Precept III; Care for yourself.
- This is to say that your own body is a gift, and you should at least try to keep it cared for and working well. (The precept I myself have the hardest time living up to).

Precept IV; Share your talents.
- This is to say if you are good at something, truly good at it, don't hide it. If you can paint let your paintings be seen. If you can cook feed the hungry. If you can sing soothe the weary. A talent is not a treasure to be hidden away, it's a tool to make other people feel better, and through doing so make yourself feel good.

Precept V; Give as good as you get.
- This is to say that you should try not to be selfish, and when someone gives you joy, be it through a gift, a service, or even sex, you should at least attempt to give joy in kind. It's best to spread joy, not hoard it. There's no joy in being alone because you were selfish.

IV; Tenets of Hedon

Tenets are rules, of which Hedon has few, but what few it has are considered absolutes, and must be at least attempted to be adhered to. Tenets are the foundation for a good life as Hedon views it. You are only obligated to follow the Tenets if you believe.

Tenet I; Respect The Green.
- The world around you sustains you. It gives you the food you eat and the clothes you wear. Respect the Green, care for it, protect it. There are few things more selfish and destructive than hunting for sport, killing for unnecessary fashion, or destroying chunks of forest for a mansion or a mini-mall. Take from the Green only what you need, and protect the rest.

Tenet II; Respect Life.
- The people around you may frustrate you. They may be sheep who bleat at you to believe only what they believe, trod on your rights, and abuse you for being different, but they are still alive, and it is that life, not their abuse, that you must respect. Killing for ANY reason but survival is wrong, as is arbitrarily hurting someone. However...

Tenet III; Respect Yourself.
- That does not mean you should be a meek mousey carpet, turning the other cheek and letting the sheep trample you. You should always stand up for your right to be who you are, even if it's as simple as saying "Look, shut up. I don't tell you what to believe, kindly keep your nose out of what I believe. It is not your place or right to convert me." Then just walk away. Also this means to take pride in what you accomplish. You're born with the tools you use to succeed, and unlike some deities, Hedon doesn't need or want to be thanked and given all the credit for everything you do.

Tenet IV; Cause No Trauma.
- Sex is among the most wonderful things in nature, and any religion that villifies the free expression of it is trying to dominate you. Be open with your sexuality without being excessive, and NEVER use sex as a weapon. Sex is an act of affection and intimacy. To use sex to hurt or control someone is beneath contempt and beyond reprehensible. Also, just normal every day behavior should never be designed to hurt. Words can be weapons, always mind how you wield them. Even words should only slice in self-defense. Above all else, this means protect and respect children. Do not hide truths about sex from them, but NEVER foist sex upon them. No adult should EVER touch a child for sexual ends.

Tenet V; Keep Love Unchained.
- Love is what makes life worth having, be it loving your family, your children, your friends, the ones you're IN love with, your pets, your work, your home, it doesn't matter. Love is the most positive healing force in existence, and without going to, pardon the phrase, "hippy extremes" of running around trying to hug everyone you meet, show love in everything you do, be it growing a garden, building a home, helping a stranger in need, and especially in relating to your Family and your Circle. Hate is a poison, leave poison to the big leagues, they're so good at it. Cure that poison with love, and NEVER let anyone restrain your love.

Tenet VI; Condemn Action, Not Belief.
- It is the right or place of NO ONE on this earth to judge or condemn. I freely admit I loathe Christianity and Islam the RELIGIONS, but I never pass judgment on those who believe in it, or even on how cruelly a few very loud ones can act making the millions of decent ones look bad. But I never try to tell a Christian it's wrong for them to be a Christian, and most Christians actually are decent, non-judgmental people who take the good from the Bible and live by it. That tolerance does not extend the the small percentage of loudmouths who think they represent Christians everywhere and bellow loudly their ignorant judgments, using their beliefs to hurt others. Condemn a person for how they behave, not what they believe. And unless your life or safety or that of your loved ones is directly threatened, keep that condemnation limited to "You're a horrible bitter person, may your god forgive your malice", and just walk away. Nothing is served by arguing with a zealot, but never walk away without telling them they ARE one.

About Hedon; Where Were We?

The web url below links to Google Maps and shows what we believe to be the greek island that was once home to the Hedon people.

The Isle Of Hedon

About Hedon; Reviving Hedon For A World That Desperately Needs Her Back

Prefix; If you don't believe the spiritual things or historical claims made in this document, you don't have to. However do not ridicule us who do. We didn't MAKE you read this. If you do read this and have questions, you can e-mail me at theaerie@shaw.ca

Flame e-mails will be deleted and not replied to. I will only answer honest questions, even if they are opposing views, but I will NOT get into a flame war with idiots.

Prefix II; This is about a faith, (I hate the word religion), called the Trinity of Hedon. Which is NOT to be confused with Hedonism, which is little more than an excuse for rich middle-aged white people to have orgies in Barbados every summer.

I; The Purple Sage, Shaman of Hedon.

My name is Penance Sautereau-Fife. I've lived a very uncomfortable and trauma-filled life. I'm an intersexed woman, (read; hermaphrodite), in a world mostly controlled by either Islamic zealotry or Judeo-Christian repression. I'm one of those rare people who rejected the church at a very young age. I can't really say why I did then. As a small "boy" I just knew in my heart everything church had to offer was a lie, it was wrong, at least for me. Fortunately my parents, in as little as they did care about me, weren't churchgoers either, so there were only one or two times I can recall being forced to attend church.

I got in trouble in Grade school for refusing to attend Remembrance Day ceremonies. I had no issues with remembering those who had died in wars, but Grade School ceremonies were always about glorifying the actual war, telling us kids how noble a death our fallen had found, how there is no greater honor than dying for your country. I think it was a post Veit-Nam reaction. Maybe the School Board had some odd military agenda. But I refused to honor the fallen by watching what was ultimately an emotionally manipulative recruitment presentation. And I was outcast and ostracised. My Grade 4 teacher actually told the other kids in class to ignore me at recess and lunch because I was a bad influence.

I got expelled from grade four for calling him a fucking nazi cocksucker. The fact that this was said in reaction to him first slamming me into the blackboard and then throwing me over his desk into a student's was ignored. My broken ribs were ignored. None of the other kids in class were brave enough to speak against the teacher. Even my parents assumed I probably had somehow asked for it. Yes, by asking him if I could be excused from class while he read a prayer, (In a PUBLIC school), I was asking to be seriously injured at age EIGHT.

That was when I first learned two things that would help me survive the life I was going to suffer through.

First, that religious people who talk loudly and often about their religion and expect you to believe exactly as they do are bullies. Always have been. Always will be. They will beat you and hammer you relentlessly with their bibles and qurans and crosses until you're as afraid of God as they are. After all, what good is a God you don't fear?

God-Fearing... *shudders* I've always loved that term, if only because it embodies a lot of what's wrong with Christianity. No one should fear their God if their God truly loves them.

Second is that bullies count on fear in all forms to stay in control and keep from having to face the consequences of their crimes. My teacher made the other kids afraid to say he had in fact slammed me and thrown me. Fear of lawsuits made the Principle ignore the blood on my lips and the evidenciary chalk-dust on my back. Fear of having uncomfortable attention drawn to them made my parents go along with the white-wash and expulsion. And fear of ME, a dissenting voice that asked so young "Why should I believe what YOU tell me to?", that lead to the real beginning of my miserable life.

Now don't get me wrong. I've reached the point where I'm actually proud of the miserable life I've survived. There are certain horrific things that if I had not been through them, I'd be a very different person today.

I might still be living as an awkward socially retarded man, keeping my breasts taped down and wearing baggy clothes to hide my hips.

I might have become a rapist or a serial killer. God knows in my early teens I was so bitter and angry I thought seriously about doing both.

I might have successfully commited suicide.

Worst possibility of all, I made have gotten dull and bored and given into the bullies and become everything I hate, standing on street corners trying to force a pamphlet into someone's hand.

*shudders at the thought*

Instead, I'm an impossibly kind, foolishly generous, insecure, self-abusing lesbian with an outie who has let herself be a carpet in an almost pathological need to put everyone else's best interests above my own. I'm meant to be kind, warm, affectionate, loving, nurturing, motherly, sisterly, and all those things I am. I wasn't supposed to have such bad health or low self-esteem. I wasn't supposed to be a carpet.

I'm not sure how I'm to accomplish my tasks that lay ahead of me, but I have a mission. A Divine mission. One I've been running from and hiding from all my life. Because it scares me, it's too big, and I don't think I have the strength or charisma to pull it off. I can think of a hundred people better suited to the task. But she insists it has to be me.

She, is Hedon. My Goddess, my sister, my mother, my lover, my friend, the Goddess of a people long since erased from history.

I am her Purple Sage, her Shaman, the tool through which she'll be restored to the world, to give those disillusioned or abused by Islam and Christianity an option. Those who those faiths work for are welcome to them. But they aren't right for everyone. That's who Hedon is for.... us outcasts.

II; The Dreams

I've had strange recurring dreams all my life that I never understood, but it was only around 3 years ago they began to focus. I saw a place, a specific place. A community of people, a tiny place, on a small island near Greece. It was a secluded community called Hedon, named after it's goddess. Here there was no war, no strife. Everyone worked together, lived together. There was no gay or straight because you loved who you loved. The sexes were equal because it never occured to anyone that one should be regarded more highly than the other.

Children were raised by the entire community together, though never taken from their mothers. No one ever feared a child would be molested because the concept didn't exist. And Children never got into dangerous situations because there was no repression. Hedon custom was when a child asked a question it was because they were ready to know, and so the question asked was answered honestly, but only that question. No information was volunteered until puberty.

In Hedon society there was no peer pressure, so no one had sex before they were ready. Love was unhindered by oppressive moralities, and the circle of each person's heart had room for many links in the chain. Polyamorous love was normal, and beauty was a concept relegated to the world of nature, because all Hedons were beautiful to each other regardless of bodyshape.

Sex wasn't repressed, and thus was treated in a healthy manner. There weren't orgies in the street, everyone didn't have sex with everyone else. Since it wasn't vilified or forbidden people were comfortable to have it when they felt like it. It was cherished intimacy, and the priestesses used it for healing purposes.

Hedon was also flourished with a creative culture of artworks, painting, writing, sculpting. Hedons worked within nature. They respected the trees and the earth. The Green was held sacred, and they took only what they needed to live, always caring for the plants and animals around them like family.

This is what Hedon was. Granted, that description makes it sound perfect, but it did have it's flaws. And those flaws are shared only with those who become Children of Hedon, as they are the parts of Hedon life I intend to leave safely in the past, never to return.

The Hedon people also did not worship Hedon. They loved her to be sure, but she was more like a mother figure. Her teachings were guidelines, not absolutes. Hedon wasn't as insecure as some Gods, and didn't need constant praise or ego-stroking. She required no worship, and asked only that her people lived good lives and helped others.

So you can imagine when Christian Missionaries stumbled across the isle some 900 years ago roughly, that they were horrified by these people and their clearly heathen way of life.

In the dreams the missionaries tried in vain for months to convert us. Not one person was fool enough to be converted. And when they saw they stood no chance of converting us, they butchered us.

In the dreams they returned to Hedon with Christian soldiers, and slaughtered every living human on the Isle in the name of God. They genuinely believed their cause just, their bloody deeds righteous. After all, they were ensuring the poison of our ways did not spread outside our Isle. They destroyed everything, left no traces of us, no sign we ever existed, save maybe a few artifacts they may have kept as trophies. I often wonder what manner of lost civilizations are represented only by the treasures hidden deep below the Vatican.

These dreams traumatized me, terrified me. I often prayed to no one in particular to be rid of them.

Then, ironically, a videogame showed me my path.

I had gotten into Neverwinter Nights, an RPG for PC's by Bioware based on the D&D "Forgotten Realms" system, and created with it's toolset a mod recreating the Hedon of my dreams, hoping to purge the dreams by giving them life. It was never a popular mod by any means, but among those who did come to play it were a few people who asked me if I had ever dreamt about EXACTLY what I had been.

That was when I knew. These were no dreams, they were past-life memories. Hedon was real, it existed, and Hedon was making me remember so I can give her a voice again, in a world being destroyed by Religious repressionists and extremists. I believe it is my path to put Hedon back into the public consciousness, and let those who want an alternative to the big leagues for their spirituality choose for themselves.