New Religion

Before I delve…you gotta listen to this song…a Black Label Society favorite.

No, seriously.  Listen to the whole goddamn song!!!

With all these life changes and transitions, I feel a part of me missing.  I’m not quite sure what I lost or what must be found, but I’m sojourning down the path of evolution in faith.  At 14, I chucked my belief in Catholicism (save for the dichotomy of Vice v. Virtue, the virtues originally taught by Aristotle) shortly after Confirmation.  As you can infer, this pleased my mother immensely [NOT].

  1. Chastity v. Lust
  2. Temperance v. Gluttony
  3. Charity v. Greed
  4. Diligence v. Sloth
  5. Patience v. Wrath
  6. Kindness v. Envy
  7. Humility v. Pride

Right around 17, I realized the strength of truth in understanding biblical (and religious, in general) stories as symbolic rather than strict rules to be executed literally.  In undergrad, I read The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde  for a lit class.  I gathered the necessity to occasionally indulge in vices…otherwise your beast will consume you.

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While the three branches of Buddhism (Theravada, Mahayana, & Vajrayana) vary in the minutia of their teachings, recurring themes of rebirth and liberation from suffering present themselves.  In my early twenties, I read Marilyn Manson’s autobiography, The Long Hard Road Out of Hell.  In it, Manson discusses LeVeyan Satanism.  Whereas most may flinch at the mere thought of any association with Satanism as a relatable set of life teachings, I became enamored, as I do with most texts sparking an impetus toward personal self-growth.  While I sincerely oppose Draconian social Darwinism at the core of my very soul, the faith views Satan as an archetype for vices one should shamelessly indulge in such as pride and lust.  Magic is utilized to concentrate one’s energy toward a specific task–it is “psychodramatic catharsis.”  Further, LaVey’s Satanic Church teaches mindfulness, sexual consent, and refraining from harming children and animals.  Yes.  I can get behind these common sense teachings.

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Lately, I’ve been revisiting the teachings of Paganism and reflecting on how other religious teachings echo themes, especially holiday celebrations.  Magic and Witchcraft enamors me.  I grew up loving everything about the Halloween season–costumes, sweets, crunchy fall leaves, the scent of smoky bonfires, apple & pumpkin pie, another kind of spooky action…you name it…not to mention my birthday lands smack dab in the middle of October.  Despite commercialism of the hallowed day, it will always remain my favorite time of year for more than the cliche reasons.  As harvest time is upon us, it sparked me to contemplate more than just Samhain, but how all eight of the Pagan holidays relate to other religious holidays…

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Gil fell asleep while studying how to be a proper familiar.

…how spiritual beliefs mirror each other, branch off each other…how the life cycle is celebrated in so many…how nature creates and destroys the same as how the Christian God is portrayed…how we are our own God…created in our personal Creator’s vision…how the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are also the Mind, Body, and Soul…

For years, I rejected  I could exist as both a scientist valuing rational thought and empiricism while also embracing spirituality.  For the longest time, I regarded myself as an atheist, a secular humanist…but these titles never captured the entirety of myself.  My close friend Tiff from high school used to read me with her Tarot Deck as well as our Dear Anna, a Shaman Priestess and fellow lover of Jim Morrison.  I’ve finally discovered the term which made me say, “That’s me.  That’s who I am.”

Omnism. It is an acceptance of all religions.  All religions contain universal elements of truth.  It includes Syncretism, or accepting underlying unity among faiths.  It is not so much a religion as it is a perception or philosophical stance of sorts.  I am open to receiving wisdom from all creeds.  I am not a “poser” or inherently disrespectful for engaging in many world views as opposed to devoting myself to a single system.

Omnism works for me. I can question and explore spiritual inquiries using multiple sources.  This procedure parallels the scientific methods of inquiry I hold so dear.

Here are some of my findings:

  • Balance remains key toward fulfillment in life.
  • Cyclicality is the very essence of life and death.
  • While the different paths yield unique journeys, the destination is the same.
  • Creation and Destruction is the essence of “God.”

Now I’ll leave you with a bit of Shaman Blues.

 

Chicago Open Air: The Recap

It’s been a week since #thebestweekendever at the First Annual Chicago Open Air.  I was going to write a huge Recap post of Day 1, 2, & 3, but instead I’ll post some movies I made using Magisto and mention a few of the random highlights.

Day 1

  • The dude gettin’ it hardcore during Drowning Pool…about that Metal hair man.
  • Watching Butcher Babies’ “The Climb of Life“…Jesus Needs More Babies For His Little War Machine, afterall…
  • Maria Brink’s costumes ❤ ❤ ❤
  • Kuma’s Corner…The Zeppelin burger…ermagerd…
  • The double rainbow in the afternoon
  • All the fucking fire during Rammstein’s set.  It was like a Dethklok show.  I can literally die happy.

WATCH DAY 1

Day 2

  • Taking the day off and hanging out with my cat
  • Hatching a Pokemon egg while walking to Toyota Park from our parking spot literally the next town over
  • Watching KoRn kill their set for the second time in my life
  • Not being stuck in the parking lot for over an hour
  • Late Night waffles at IHOP with Baby Bro as the couple seated next to us critiqued their Metal weekend and trashed Disturbed

WATCH DAY 2

Day 3

  • Changing my opinion of BabyMetal after they yelled “BIGGA CIR-CLL!”, making a hand gesture to signal to the pit to grow wider…they finally sold me.
  • GIMMIE CHOCOLATE!!
  • Being disappointed in Manson’s pisspoor performance..He’s done way better shows.
  • Finding the best kept secret spot of the arena so Baby Bro and I could quickly navigate between watching the 2nd stage from the arena balcony to the main stage
  • Watching the 9 guys of Slipknot perform in rhythm flawlessly
  • Watching post-spinal surgery Corey Taylor (Bae <3) amp up the charisma
  • Riding the Lightning all the way home from ChiTown…crazy storms were brewing during Slipknot’s set

WATCH DAY 3

Chicago Open Air: Day 3

Last day, Metalheads!!!🤘🎸

Baby Bro and I are SUPER FUCKIN’ EXCITED FOR MANSON & SLIPKNOT!

We’ll probably grab some more burgers from Kuma’s, too. Nommms🍔

Current lineup plans for us are:

  • 4:25–Bullet For My Valentine
  • 5:10–BABYMETAL
  • 5:50–Manson
  • 6:40–Killswitch Engage
  • 7:20–Five Finger Death Punch
  • 8:50–Slipknot

Hopefully, Corey Taylor doesn’t break his damn spine.

Come As You Are…Pt. 2

I’ve waited long enough to formally introduce myself.

I’m Breezer.  

No, that’s not my birth name.  I’m 27 years old…which is relevant if you’re a fellow rockstar reading this blog.

Since I can remember, music pervaded my life.  As an infant, I would not sleep unless Judas Priest caressed my ears.  I regularly untuned my father’s 70’s era Fender Stratocaster as a toddler.  I danced to Alice Cooper’s “Poison” music video at my Second Birthday party while donning a favorite frilly blue dress.  I survived the 90’s N*SYNC/Backstreet era as the weird nerd who religiously listened to Aerosmith on my Walkman.  Bach chorales trained my fingers to play instruments. Choir refined vocals.  Show Choir brought out the performance artist.  DrumMajor duties in high school marching band disciplined my leadership skills.  Musical tunes brought sanctuary in the high school auditorium.  Marilyn Manson saw me through the tears and sleepless nights of my Undergrad years.

Finally, after too long…the opportunity to create presents itself.

This blog will be many things to me..to you, the audience..a place for me to share band updates, new experiences and revelations, eclectic fashion choices, inspiring lyrics…a safe haven for all to be our best selves.

This is my life as a Rockstar

…And I Swear that I Don’t Have A Gun.