Those Wiccan Waccos
Christine Tobey (aka
Chaplin IM False
Legion of Dynamic Discord
recently sent me a bound copy of the major epistles sent during the cursed
One of the things in the mish-mash of stuff was the following article,
written by Ian Bear, which appeared in
Green Egg, which seems
to be some
kind of Neo-pagan/Wiccan magazine or other. I have decided to forgive them for
was invented by Robert Anton Wilson and Bob Shea; 'tis so much the better if
people are confused as to whether or not
is a figment of Robert Anton Wilson's overflowing cesspool of an imagination.
by Ian Bear
Church of All Worlds has adopted many
Wicca practices and
flavors many of its rituals heavily with Wicca derived material, CAW is not
strictly a Wicca tradition as such. CAW draws from many roots, and the
basic membership pledge does not include any particular obligation to
perform Wicca rituals. I would like to take this opportunity to discuss
yet another of the many mystical, scientific, and pop culture traditions
that have blended into and influenced CAW, namely the Discordian tradition.
Neopagan Discordianism as we know it was started in a bowling alley
around 1958 by two white guys having a mystical vision. They went on to
publish Principia Discordia, which
became an underground cult favorite and
remains in print today. Its central point is that
chaos can be creative as
well as destructive, and that chaos and humor are necessary to combat the
destructive order rampant in the world today.
Being European guys, they saw
Eris from the Greek tradition, famous
for Her golden apples of discord. However, the honoring of chaos as a
universal force has roots going back through the mists of time and through
many cultures around the Earth. The use of humor and the presence of
trickster deities to enlighten dull souls, and keep religions from becoming
too pompous and stuffy has been a multicultural phenomenon throughout the
ages. Modern Discordianism has lost little time adopting and honoring
these diverse forms of sacred chaos.
Coyote has been Turtle Island's major
trickster deity, and a
favorite among Neopagan Discordians. Indeed, he has undergone quite a
remarkable revival lately. He frequently ignores the strictures of the
guardians of native purity, and visits white folk who appreciate his humor
and/or have need of his teachings. This does not mean endorsement of "new
age" hucksterism however, and I don't know if I want to stick around to see
what he does with those who pimp the mysteries.
The kachina dancers of the American southwest included a special
sort of kachina, the mud heads, whose job was to make fun of the ritual and
act as jesters. Humor and clowning were considered not to contradict the
sacred atmosphere, but to be a necessary part of a healthy, balanced
More tricksters from other cultures include Elegba from Africa,
Papa Ghedde from Haiti, Pombagira from Brazil, Puck from Britain, Loki from
Scandinavia, and Bugs Bunny from recent video iconography.
Divine irreverence is an important part of the Discordian
tradition, and has been an important part of CAW. Irreverence allows all
ideas to be called into question, and prevents them from hardening into
rigid dogmas. Any religion is capable of falling into institutional
rigidity and dogmatism, even the Taoists, and if we're not careful, the
Discordians. However, sometimes it is better to let the dogma harden a
little before dealing with it. It's easier to scoop up that way.
The trickster is able to bring up in a humorous way issues that may
still be too controversial to begin serious debates over. Willingness to
parody ourselves protects us from becoming truly ridiculous, and renders
parodies of us by our enemies utterly useless. If the New Agers were more
willing to parody themselves, their culture might have filtered out some of
its more absurd notions, and spared itself much vicious lampooning from
without. It is the job of the Discordian to disrupt unhealthy patterns,
including one's own. It should be noted that making pointless wisecracks
just as the energy is peaking in a ritual is not a positive use of
On a larger scale the chaos magician is able to work vast changes
unattainable through ordinary, orderly means. Where chaotic systems exist,
it is now well known that in the right place, a small flutter can transform
the entire system. This is known in chaos science as the butterfly effect.
In these fast changing times, at this crossroads of history, in this time
of crisis and opportunity, our entire society is a chaotic system. By
observing society keenly, and choosing the appropriate moment for the
golden apple to be launched, the chaos magician can work great changes in
society through the social butterfly effect.
The following are five element invocations used during actual
Discordian rituals with the IDES nest. The five Discordian elements
mentioned in Principia Discordia are Sweet, Orange, Pungent,
Boom. They are only briefly mentioned by Malaclypse the Younger in the
cosmogeny section, and none of this is to be taken as dogma. Those doing
Discordian rituals may use some, all, or none of these invocations, or
ignore the whole notion of element calling altogether. The floor may be
opened to calling other favorite elements, and the order of calling could
be determined by tossing a golden apple back and forth.
Oh ever blessed sweetness, be within us now. We call upon the spirits
of chocolate, honey, ice cream, and good, gentle loving to be among our
gathering this evening. May kindness and sweetness flourish among us in
this circle, and may we always have goodies to share.
Oh sweet, ere you depart to your sticky realm, give us just one more
taste of your delicious confections, and we will bask in the afterglow of
your affections. Go if you must, so that you do not become cloying or
revoltingly sweet, and we will appreciate you all the more when you return.
Oh full ,round, ripe, nourishing orange, be with us now. May you ever
be pulpy and palpable, genuine and natural, and never dehydrated,
reprocessed, irradiated, or pesticided. Feed our stomachs, hearts, and
souls. Provide us with our recommended daily allowance of vitamin C. May
we be healthy and well nourished within this circle.
Orange, ere you become mushy and moldy, and no longer so nourishing,
please depart these premises and return to the earth so that we may be
nourished by you again someday. So it is that none of the elements are
totally dismissed, but go outward to join in the chaotic dance of the
We call upon the essence of pungency, the sensual, the untamed, that
wild smell we cannot ignore. We call upon that goaty aroma that does not
know how to behave at parties, that which will keep us ever connected with
nature, the beast within us, that wild card trickster factor that will keep
civilization from strangling all. May the wildness and sensuality within
us live and grow within this circle.
Oh pungent air you depart, leaving a lingering aroma and strange
stains on the bedsheets. Go if you must, and come again sometime.
Oh Great Mother of Chaos, let us not lapse into oblivion and
unconsciousness. When we have become comfortably numb, prickle us, awaken
us, enliven us. Prickle us enough that we stay awake and learn our
lessons, and please make the lessons no harder then they need to be. May
we be awake and fully alive in this circle.
Essence of prickle, though we grant you permission to depart if you
will, we know we are not off the hook. Ere you depart to your spiny
realms, leave us with the awareness to continue along our paths without
falling into the pit of obliviousness.
Boom is the element that started it all. The echoes of the Big Boom
still vibrate through the known universe. The waves of that mighty
primordial explosion still splash about, sometimes spreading outward,
sometimes crashing in on one another, or getting caught in vast celestial
toilet bowls and forming spiral galaxies. It was a chaotic eddy in one of
those toilet bowls that formed our sun, and the gurgling splash of that
eddy that formed the planets. We are of the froth splashing atop the
mighty waves of this expanding universe. It is thanks to the chaotic force
that this froth is ever dancing, ever changing. May we grow and change in
harmony with the forces of creative chaos.
Oh boom, I don't know if it will do much to dismiss you since no matter
what I say, the echoes of the Big Boom will continue to reverberate
throughout the All, but then again who am I to say what you can and can't
do? Just keep the chaotic motion and dance of the universe going. May the
heat death of the universe be ever averted. Hail and sleet and fare well.
A word of warning to the wise:
Though this be the light hearted Discordian tradition, serious caution
is advised in calling physically manifest elementals of these elements. If
you call a pungent elemental to your apartment, you may never get your
security deposit back, and a boom elemental may level portions of the
neighborhood. Indeed, it is best if the physical forms of these sorts of
elementals remain a warped alternative D&D concept.
It should also be remembered that Discordianism is about the balance
of order and chaos that brings about creation, and not about chaos run
amok. Falling into the pit of destructive chaos is no more fun than the
effects of destructive order. The eclectic Discordian should embrace
diversity and include positive orderly practices in a spiritual path as
A historical note:
One fine evening, after calling in the elements using the
invocations above, plus some extra ones for important elements such as
garlic and chocolate, which were thoughtlessly omitted by the great
Malaclypse the Younger, I tossed a lovely round organic golden delicious
apple into the circle, announcing it was for the prettiest. A friend
seized the apple, and got out a knife, planning to divvy it up among all
the pretty folk assembled. First she sliced the apple horizontally, and
triumphantly holding the halves in the air, proclaimed, "Behold, the sign
of the penta--, oops, it's a six sided apple." It was then we knew the She
had come to bless our simple rite of devotion with sacred confusion.
For yet more terribly secret and powerful Erisian magickqual ceremonies, I
refer you to the dreaded
Turkey Curse and the Paper Clip Sacrifice.