When comes to the issue of lineage and who initiated the first Witch I am reminded of the age old parable…
There once was a young man who feigned to study the mysteries of Life and the universe and his place therein. The endless questions of who he was and how should be act in accordance with the universe came in unending torrents and so he approached the Wise One of the community.
The Wise One was a person who had study Life’s deeper meanings and surely he should know the answers that plagued on the young man’s mind. As was the tradition of the time the young man simply couldn’t turn up on the Wise One’s door unannounced and certainly not without being appropriately cleansed and prepared for such wisdom to be bestowed upon him. So he journeyed out of the community and went down by the river to be cleansed by the river spirit that nourished the community. As he bathed in the cool spring waters he asked the river spirit, “O’ great spirit of the river why do you flow this way, so close to the community when you have so many other options?” And with this the river spirit responded: “Why did you build your community so close to me? What little choice I had was made long before you came here.”
Knowing better than to push his luck the young man journeyed onwards into the wild forest. A chill came over him as he approached the shadowy and imposing forest. He contemplated returning to the community, remembering his warm bed and how his family would soon be stirring, but instead with one mighty breath he drew in all the courage he could and stepped into the forest. It was often said that within the forests ancient spirits still slumbered and should remain so. The community had become frightened of the ancient forest spirits but the elders often spoke still of the ancient hunts and the prayers of thanks to those ancient spirits back when they cared more for human folk. The young man set about creating the space in which he would reside for the next few days. He was careful to select the best of everything that the forest offered him remembering that what the forest offered came from the ancient spirits that would come to help him on his journey.
For the most part it was cramped and uncomfortable on that first day and nothing really happened. So the young man vowed to stop his foolishness if by morning nothing further happened. As night crept in the young man heard a rustling sound. It was difficult to see even in the fireside but then as the bright slivery moon pierced through the trees, he was able to narrow his vision to witness a small mouse. Immediately reassured that he hadn’t journeyed ‘too’ deeply into the forest as to be eaten he then grew frustrated. After all this hard work and the forest spirits send a mouse! He rose up and went to throw dirt on the fire and return home when the mouse entered the space he’s made and began eating the food he’d brought as offering.
“Oi, stop that! That was for the animal spirit that the forest spirits were going to send me!”
“I know, thanks it tastes yummy and saves me scurrying all the way into the community to get food!” said the mouse enthusiastically. Lacking the spirit to argue, the young man asked the mouse “Why head into the community for food?”
“Well,” said the mouse, “you see I normally come into your house and eat food through the hole in the wall but I’ve more or less always been around you and so I guess what you really mean to ask me is why the ‘most ancient and venerable of forest spirits chose me?!” And the young man nodded…
“My message is: to start looking at all of those details in life and to to be alert to the things going on around you.” chirped the mouse.
So the young man returned to his community more baffled than when he left. Three days had now passed with his journey and the comments of the river spirit and the message the mouse had given him were far from answering his questions. Indeed they probably raise more, like what details was he missing and what was he missing that was happening all around him? When he reached the community he meandered through the streets for a bit before arriving at the Wise One’s place. The Wise One seemed to have been waiting for him at the door. It was still early morning and they young man and the Wise One sat down for some morning tea to discuss the young man’s journey.
The young man explained what the river spirit had said and what the mouse had said and the Wise One nodded along smiling knowingly. When he’d finished the Wise One proceeded to hmm and haw for some small time. Almost as if he wanted to be as enigmatic and aloof as could be. Then he proceeded to explain that he himself had proceeded to seek the same answers from the spirits and had dedicated the better part of his life to understanding Life. He’d spoken to the tree spirits, the river spirits, the sky spirits and the land spirits. All of whom had redirected him to another question. After years of noble pursuit the Wise One was left with one assumption, that Life was a lifetime’s endeavour. Sensing the young man’s reservation he pressed to know what it was that had pressed such growing concerns as to journey such an old and trodden path.
So the young man explained that he’d wanted to know who had initiated the first bum-fuck. Startled at the the openness of the young man’s statement and probably more than a little taken aback the Wise One took a few minutes again. The young man explained that since he’d often heard the Wise One state that he’d been trained and initiated by the the Wise One before him he’d wondered about other stuff too including men and women and then the young man explained that while he accepted men and women and didn’t mind it as a concept he knew it wasn’t for him. Now he’d wanted to know about men and men. It didn’t strike him as a path many would have wanted to travel especially THAT part of it since it was far messier than it’s hetero-counterpart (baring in mind this was in the days before enemas)! And since the elders always spoke of the magic of creation shouldn’t this count too as being very creative by design?! Luckily the Wise One, being as wise as he was, had an answer for everything even if it did take him a while to catch up. He said to the young man, “Does it really matter? We’re all Life’s bitches since Life initiates for all of us on a daily basis?”
Moral of the story is this… we may never know the reasons why everything is as it is. Sometimes the simplest of reasons in the answer we seek as in the case of the river spirit and the community selecting that spot. Other times we need to let go of our EGO and see our part in the story of creation a little better.