Confessions of a Mystical Fangirl
Most teachers, tarotists, ministers and spiritual advisors I know reference quotations and stories to help illustrate their point. Even Jesus taught in parables.
I draw from a wide range of sources for inspirational and illustrative passages, although I will admit that, while many of my friends often quote Rumi and Kahlil Gibran, I am more likely to quote the Grateful Dead.
Yesterday, I realized that I pepper my language with references from another source. I am a huge sci-fi fan – I always have been. As a kid, I read Bradbury nonstop one summer. While I don’t watch broadcast or cable TV, I do love watching series on Netflix and Hulu. Most of my favorite shows are sci-fi.
I figured I was normal in that. I mean, most of my friends and family bemoaned the loss of “Firefly” with me. However, on three occasions yesterday, my sci-fi reference garnered only blank stares.
One person didn’t know why I was mentioning red pills and blue pills in a conversation about those who are willing to see reality and those who are not. The iconic Matrix reference missed completely.
In another conversation, we were discussing why sometimes divination yields confusing results. “No spoilers,” I said in my best River Song voice. My friend was clearly not a Whovian.
Finally, in discussing a friend’s business conundrum, I told her that she must, above all else, honor her inner Ferengi and not lose sight of her financial interests. The message resonated, even though she didn’t know anything about the Ferengi Rules of Acquisition.
I share with others the things that inspire me. Is it odd that stories of time and space different from our own inspire me so much?
Year ago, when I was in the hospital fighting a post-surgical infection, it was an image from a Stephen King novel that kept me grounded and fighting for my life. The Bene Gesserit Litany against Fear, from Dune, was my daily mantra in the early years of my business, when everything felt new and scary.
Many people draw their inspiration only from sacred texts, or lauded philosophers and poets. I find value there, too. I also believe there is much for us to learn from stories that place a human element in an alien setting. When everything else is foreign, it becomes easy to see what is innately human and immediately resonant.
There is a special joy, too, in finding the magic that hides within the mundane.
Pop culture and geek fandom may not be as intellectually or artistically important as ancient works, but they can be every bit as relevant and enlightening. As the Grateful Dead said, “Once in a while you can get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right.”