Sim salalam, sim salawu. Pa salam, pa salawu.

You in, you in. You out, you stay out.

I have a rather extensive spiritual history with a whole host of outside-of-vodou divinities in my past and my present. My primary spiritual identity has been as a polytheist–I believe that the divinities are unique and individual in nature, desires, needs, and agendas–and that has held up through all of my spiritual evolutions. I’ve been rather lucky that all my divinities regularly conspire together to assure that I have the best possible present and future, provided I put in work and deliver the effort needed to achieve our mutual goals for me. It’s really a good thing and has changed the way I view myself, my life, and my potential future.

There are very few things I have been forbidden from, either outright as a demand from my divinities or as a result of actions/inactions on my part. For the most part, I am encouraged to do what I want and venture where I would like, in the spiritual sense. That’s something I earned, though, after a series of serious missteps when I was younger and much stupider.

The long and short of my more naive, ignorant self was that I painted myself into a serious corner early on and got myself entangled with a divinity that I found to be an absolutely ruthless and merciless being that would be content to suck me dry in pursuit of goals that needed to be achieved in Their agenda. With the help of a divinity or two, I managed to get myself rescued from that situation–with the notation that if I ever got myself into trouble like that again, I was on my own in terms of getting out of it–and made some agreements and allegiances that protected me. The outcome of that mess was the edict that I would not ever reach out to that divinity for myself or on behalf of a spiritual client, and that if I ever found myself occupying a space with that divinity or Their people I would act with utter and complete courtesy if I could not politely remove myself. It was basically ‘leave Them alone and They will leave you alone, and don’t you dare fuck it up’ agreement, and I have never once screwed it up, to my knowledge.

Any time a whiff of that divinity has appeared in my life, I have basically picked up and run to a diviner I trust to make sure it is complete coincidence or otherwise something that I have not inadvertently initiated. Until recently, that has only happened once and it was complete coincidence that got a lot of careful treatment from me to assure that I did all the right things.

Last Sunday, I had a pretty extensive dream that included that divinity as a central figure. They had stepped forward and asked me to paint a portrait of Them. True to awake form, when I figured out Who was asking this, I zoomed off to see the divinity that had basically negotiated my freedom when I had fucked up in the past. I asked Him if this was something He was aware of and approved of, and what He would like me to do with this.

True to form, He didn’t give me a helpful direct answer and only said that I was a different person than I was when things had gone to hell before and that the situation was now different as well. I spent most of my dream painting and revising the design to the Intruder’s specifications, over and over until I woke up and went ‘FUCK’.

Because I am a lucky bastard and because I don’t dare fuck around when stakes are high and I risk displeasure of my divinities all the way around, I contacted the diviner I most like to work with outside of vodou things. She is a damn saint incarnate who is patient, willing to get dirty while digging into whatever I bring to her, and is owed at least a bit of my soul at this point, for all the the shit I have dropped at her feet.

I had some ideas of what was going on before she and I got down to work, but none of my ideas were right and were in fact quite wrong. Very wrong. Incredibly wrong. So wrong that I was wrong enough to go past being right and enter wrong territory a second time.

Turns out this Intruder never really lost interest in me and had only decided that I wasn’t worth the fight way back when. They had shrugged and gone off to do whatever it was They do until I got more useful. At this point, I am useful enough to Them that They showed up and made an offer that They didn’t want me to refuse. Very directly. this Intruder showed up and offered to essentially buy out all of my spiritual contracts. In business parlance, I am being headhunted to come work solely for the Intruder and abandon everything I have been doing for the last almost-ten years. No spiritual or religious anything unless They brought it to my door. In specific, I would be left to be a divinely-inspired artist for the rest of my life.

I had this completely predictable reaction when this was all laid out for me. Shock and surprise first, then outright anger, then disgust and creeping horror.

I want nothing to do with the Intruder. I don’t believe what They are saying for a second–I find Them to be the least trustworthy divinity I have ever come in contact with–and, compared to what the Lwa and other divinities have brought to me, They are offering me absolute shit to the point where, after I get over the anger and disgust, I am both offended and amused. If this was a job offer from a possible paycheck employer, I wouldn’t even bother to tear up the paper it was written on because it’s that ridiculous. It’s like a shitty part-time job for two cents over minimum wage and no benefits, versus a full-time salaried position that requires a lot of work, but has great benefits AND a commission and bonus schedule on top of regular salary. I’m worth way more than what the Intruder offers.

The answer will be no, but ‘no’ is a process with the Intruder. I have done this dance with Them before and I fully remember how my ‘no’ didn’t mean a whole lot until another divinity stepped in and essentially told Them to fuck off. ‘No’ won’t stick until I make an irrevocable, unbreakable oath which means I am going to be fighting the good fight until I catapult myself into the djevo. I hate that. It’s like having that not-friend who wants to be your buddy wanting to hang out at every possible moment no matter what you are doing, whether it’s pooping or grocery shopping or talking to your actual friends.

I had a long talk with Manmi today about this fully expecting her to sort of look at me sideways, but she didn’t even flinch and named it what it was–temptation. She told me how the Lwa had tempted her and how really hard it was to turn down what was presented to her at times. It was really helpful to hear that, especially since I was FURIOUS with the Lwa after this all came to light. Like,I said I was going to kanzo and my word means something, so why the fuck are you standing by while this happens? But, in the context of making sure commitment actually exists before I sign the final and permanent contract makes sense even if I find it maddening.

So, there’s that. Me and Esu are going to get busy this week, since Intruder has clearly been hanging around my house and listening in on what I say in my prayers at my altars. Not happy to have unwelcome and uninvited guests hanging about, and not about to let that stand.

The best part of this bullshit circus is that it has really solidified how I feel about the Lwa and other divinities that would be removed from my life if I said yes to the Intruder, and how I feel about vodou in general. The Lwa have laid blessings at my feet at every turn and vodou has transformed my life. Vodou fits my outlook on the world and I really believe in the vision vodou and the Lwa have for me and the world around me. At this point, I feel like turning my back on the Lwa and vodou and saying that They have not done enough for me would be like cutting out my vital organs and burning them just for spite. There is something about having a look at what life could be life if you were to take a radical left turn from the best possible outcome that strengthens your resolve, sharpens your focus, and increases the gratitude that fills your heart.

Tonight, I am grateful that the universe at large delivered me to where I am right now. I am grateful that I have made the choices that I have, and that the consequences of those choices have brought me great joy. I am grateful for the brain in my head, the heart in my chest, and the logic that lays in both places. I am grateful to have a goal in sight and the knowledge that if I work hard, I can achieve it.

Happier things on the horizon–it’s almost time for Christmas baths and then Twa Wa/Three Kings Day/Good Luck baths. 2016 is looking like a pivotal year and I am so excited to see where my feet, the Lwa, and all my divinities bring me.


~ by Alex on December 19, 2015.

One Response to “Sim salalam, sim salawu. Pa salam, pa salawu.”

  1. […] Source: Sim salalam, sim salawu. Pa salam, pa salawu. […]

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