Villain

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We are all the villain of our own story.
We make the choices that bind us.


If you’re true to yourself, nothing can destroy your integrity. Not even death, because your message will live on in the hearts of others.
There’s no enemy, no villain, except the mechanisms by which you tear yourself down.
We project that villain onto others, and others can serve as ‘tricksters’ or truth-revealers in our own life, to open our eyes to our own biases and push us to confront our demons.
But the only one who can confront your demons is you.
The rest is a backdrop which can only serve as a reminder for what we already know in our hearts.
Anyone who says something like “I’m not a great man, I’m just a regular guy” – wrong. Gandhi and Peterson and MLK also were just regular people.
There’s nothing about anyone that inherently makes them great, or destined for greatness.
“Privilege” may make the path easier, but in and of itself, it does not ensure greatness or mediocrity.
Those choices come only from us.

You can be a “great man” or “great woman” in the context of your own life.
Not everyone has to be world famous, to be great.
Mediocrity is a temptation that lures us. It’s easier to avoid making waves.
When you make a statement, grow and expand, you come up against boundaries, challenges and difficulties.
It’s easier to say “fuck it, I’ll just do what’s easy, what remains unchallenged.”
And the idea of a villain or an enemy is also tempting.
It’s easier, it’s the path of least resistance – to hate and fear another person, instead of delving into ourselves.
The peaceful path is not always the wrong path. Sometimes excess drama and challenge is also the path of least resistance, a projection of “war” out into the world instead of focusing on the battles inside us, which are most important.
The path of least resistance comes in many forms, and all of them are the devil’s lure.
Our character is determined by whether or not we succumb.

Freedom

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I don’t like freedom, I feel like I’m not really alive unless I know what I’m willing to die for; and what trajectory I’m on. When I hear “freedom” I hear “nothing to lose” – which is not attractive to me, especially because I’ve been there, involuntarily. All it is, is hunger.
 
I need a reason to get up in the morning, a sense of purpose that remains constant; something that runs so deep in my bones, I trust it will fuel me for several lifetimes, if only I could live that long. Music did this for me; and my fantasy series, although that has more of a ‘slow burn’ effect during some periods, whereas music is always on red-hot fire mode.
 

People seem to hold freedom as some kind of ideal. To me, freedom exists only within limits. Meaning there’s something I have to do, somewhere I have to be, some deadline I have to meet. Mortality is intrinsically a limit, so our minds are programmed to exist within it; and I’m all too aware , due to illness, that I could die at any time. To me freedom is knowing that while I was here, I lived. I did something meaningful, valuable, highly specific. Something expressed itself through me. I need to know I surrendered to a force greater than myself — the divine symmetry of music; the epic tapestry of my fictional world. The rhythm of life. 

 

Freedom is knowing that if the illness takes me from my body tomorrow, I won’t regret what I did (or didn’t do) with my life.  Freedom is knowing my purpose is strong enough that I can justify consuming plants and meat and other resources to survive. That my life was worth the sacrifice of all those other living entities. (It’s not really worth it, but at the very least, I know those sacrifices didn’t go to waste if my life has meaning .)  Without meaning, it seems more morally justifiable to take my own life. 

 
‘Freedom’ … it’s empty. It’s cold. It’s nothingness, formless.  At least in the sense of being “free of obligation, free of constraint.”  Give me something worth fighting for, something worth dying for. That’s freedom. If I die fighting for it, I’m free to die in peace.

Opening – no format

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Part I: Ynas

~ 1.1: Vaye.  Year 1318, Mid Winter. ~

The girl was fast asleep, yet far from peaceful.  Her chest heaved with each breath and Vaye watched her fight for air as her wound swelled and collapsed…

“Vaye, the potion.”

She reached into her satchel for the deadly fluid and a memory flashed through her mind: young Nossië, lithesome and brave, racing toward freedom as an arrow plunged into her back.  The savages paid dearly, but Nossië would not survive the night.

Vaye collected herself and returned to the present.  Five young children lay across the marble table, fast asleep under the spell of Vaye’s soporific herbs, and the smallest one had a gash in her gut that boded imminent death.  Shadows floated across her ivory skin in the torchlight as its flame swelled and retracted in concert with each breath, dancing to the rhythm of the child’s fragile body. 

The two men waited for Vaye to act, impatient with her delay.  Their minds were occupied with procedures and results, too busy to notice to the resonance between the fire and the girl, or even to ponder why the flame should sway at all when they were enclosed in an underground sanctum with no windows.  Neither noticed nor grasped the implications of events that unfolded before them, yet they believed their concerns constituted reality.  Vaye knew much more than she was willing to reveal, and said simply, “She has a strong constitution.”

Nurin and Dinad exchanged a look.  “Pardon my intrusion,” Dinad said, “but she is wasted and frail.”

“She was gravely wounded, yet she breathes well.  She will heal.”

Nurin furrowed his brow and spoke in his most severe tone.  “The child is almost dead,” he said.  “Allow her to pass in peace.”

Vaye positioned herself between the two men and the girl, touched her and felt a rapid pulse.  There wasn’t much time.  To end the discussion, she intoned, “Please let me do my work.”

“Blast!” Dinad interjected.  “First the slave-boy and now this?”

Nurin aimed his chin in the air to reclaim some authority and inquired, “What of the slave?”

Vaye turned to the vault.  The giant metal door was locked, but could not shroud the powerful presence of the boy just beyond.  Solemnly, she said, “He resisted the procedure.”

“Use your potion,” Dinad insisted.  “His mind is too strong and he is too old to integrate.”

Ignoring Dinad, Nurin turned to Vaye and commanded, “Continue your work on the slave after you finish the others.  If the girl does survive, she must never learn who she is.”

~ 1.2: Aera.  Year 1319, Early Summer. ~

Aera was alone, aligned with the world, exactly where she belonged.  Everything was familiar and even in the darkest reaches of night, her feet knew where to go.  She was finally home.

The forest was alive, spilling with music, breathing along with the beat of her heart.  A choir of insects crooned while an expanse of white trees danced in the mist, and Aera swirled through them, her long hair billowing.  She looked around to admire the scenery and realized the trees had no leaves at all.  White birds lined every branch as far as the eye could see, their feathers shimmering in the moonlight. 

Aera imagined she also might take flight.  She moved her arms like wings and pranced about, pretending to fly, leaving trails in the low mist until it became so dense that she could no longer see her legs.  Fog tumbled around itself and morphed into faces that surrounded her from all sides.  Their hollow eye sockets stared Aera down as a chill fell upon the forest.

She swatted at the faces and slashed them away, but more formed instantly.  Faces appeared between faces until she was engulfed by a mob dissolving and reforming around her.  She thrust at the invaders with increasing force, but it was never enough.  They continued to multiply until everything was a blur. 

The air itself compressed and pushed against Aera.  Her ears rang and her head throbbed; she feared she might implode.  Just when she thought she could bear no more, the faces opened their mouths and hissed in high pitches that congealed in distorted unison.  Aera screamed in terror and the birds echoed with a shriek and flew off, shrouding the sky as the trees were laid bare.  The collective bedlam of wings reverberated like a storm and faded into the distance, leaving Aera alone with the howling fog.

The faces enclosed her with their collective screech, and one pair of foul lips swirled out of synch with the rest.  In a ghastly low pitch, it cackled: “Filén na erë lëoryán assë të yo-fayanta i nalanna hyánië votheldë. Në Laimandil ë i namanya, sinë veskénto i suínanya më Onórnëan.”

She pressed her hands against her ears, desperate to silence the scathing screech.  Sinë veskénto i suínanya më Onórnëan.  Sinë veskénto i suínanya më…”

“Wake up, Samies!  Time to do your duty… we are all the same!”

Aera jolted awake, heart racing and head pounding.  Voices and footsteps shuffled about, and the terrible drone rang in her mind: Sinë veskénto i suínanya më Onórnëan.

“Move it!  Let’s go, girls.  Follow your group!” 

The Samies jumped up from their mats, scurrying to ready themselves.  Aera arranged her hair in front of her to shield the scar on her stomach, then grabbed clothes from the cubby and dressed.  When she finished, she reached for her sandals, but they were missing and she could not find them anywhere.  The other girls lined up by the door and chattered in shrill tones that swirled into a shriek.  Sinë veskénto i suínanya më Onórnëan…

“What’s the problem, kid?” boomed Officer Onus.  Aera repeated the question to herself.  What’s the problem… Sandals.  She needed her sandals.  Where were they?

Ey-ruh lost her sandals!” Doriline squealed.  “Maybe they’re stuck in her hair!” 

Laughter exploded in piercing tones and all eyes leered at Aera.  “Pooooor Ey-ruh!  Skinny little Ey-ruh…” 

Cheery faces blurred together as Doriline beamed with pleasure.  Aera wanted to smash her toothy smile, but the room spun too fast and her head pounded the nightmare chorus: Sinë veskénto i suínanya më Onórnëan…

“Samie Eh-ruh!” bellowed Onus.  “By Riva’s Trees, who do you think you are?” 

Aera froze in place, stunned.  The room became quiet but for the groan of floorboards beneath Onus as he stomped toward her.  He parked his giant belly beside Aera’s face, bent with difficulty, and picked up her sandals… right behind her. 

“Hegh,” Onus snorted.  “Oblivious.  Next time, take your hair out of your eyes.”

The Samies roared with laughter, and Aera stared at the ground, trying to remain upright.

“Get in line,” Onus snarled.  He dropped her sandals, glanced at the timepiece on his wrist and demanded, “You think you’re so ghaadi important, we should all wait for you?”

Aera dragged herself to the back of the line.  As she joined the ritual walk over The Hill to the Dining Hall, she buried herself so deeply in her hair that all she saw was the grass beneath her.  She dug her sandals into the dirt, one step after the other, crushing the world as hard as she could.

The Group filed into the Dining Hall and Aera was consumed by a whirl of echoing chatter.  Doriline was near the front of the line, surrounded by people, gabbing into the noise.  Sinë veskénto i suínanya më Onórnëan…

Aera gritted her teeth, straining to hold herself together.  After an eternity, she reached the food, filled her mug and looked for a table, but the clamor was unbearable.  She made her way out the door, carried her meal up The Hill and sat by a large boulder at the top, finally alone.

Birds sang everywhere and the breeze carried an aroma of summer grass, but Aera’s ears still rang with Doriline’s shriek and the nightmare voices.  Where did those bizarre words come from?  Did the phrases have meaning, or were they just random nonsense?  The white forest was familiar, but Aera did not know why.  She could not remember white trees anywhere.  As she ate, she gazed down at Southside Forest, looking for any white branches, wishing she could run into the shadows…     

Gong-gong.  Gong-gong.  The bi-hourly bell clanged across the river and, momentarily, a nearby whistle crashed its shrill thunder.  Children poured into the field and Aera headed down The Hill to join one of many lines.  Officer Luce stood at rigid alert before the crowd and announced, “Five to Six Group, proceed to Art Class!”

Cognition: SeFi

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~ If it’s not Worth Doing in Excess, it’s not Worth Doing at All ~
 
Over the past decade, I have engaged an obsessive study of typology, with focus on Enneagram and Jungian functions.  Both systems have been reinterpreted ad nauseum, but I took a holistic approach.  Recently, I discovered a more scientific angle on cognitivetype.com, whose basis for typing, known as vultology, rests on the premise that cognition reveals itself in observable expressions.  There, I was typed as SeFi  based on vultology signals, which matched the psychology I portrayed in a video I submitted and the archetypes I highlighted in my art.  Since then I’ve been in communication with the leading writer of this website, and my SeFi psychology has been confirmed on multiple levels.  
 
The four functions in my type are Se, Fi, Te and Ni.  My creative work is heavily focused on Fi and Ni, yet my vultology showed that my Se and Te functions were fully conscious in my typing video.  Naturally, this distinction intrigued me, and I’ve been reflecting on it since I was typed.  After some thought, and interaction on the website, we concluded that I am Fi conscious as well. Here, I will unpack the development and expression of my functions, as they manifested in different forms over the years.  
 
 
~ Music is Divine Symmetry ~
 
Morality, inner compass and ability to form crystallizations are all part of the Ji function.  I suspect this was more developed in my youth.  At age 11, I parsed out music theory on my own, and could sight-read chord charts while transposing at the same time.  At 15, I took a theory test at Berklee College of Music, and my scores placed me in top classes alongside the eldest professionals.  I mastered each modicum of my 4.5 octave range and scored 100% in state competitions which required singing opera in foreign languages.  Additionally, I scored 99th percentile on standardized math tests, won awards for Latin and French, and embodied strong personal values.  Singing was my life path, and at 13, my career began.
 
Everything changed at age 16, when Lyme Disease nearly killed me.  After that, my math scores dropped to 30th percentile and I was unable to remember or learn foreign languages.  Brain scans showed damage to my cognition which improved with Lyme treatment, but never fully recovered.  This brought on disintegration of Ji: I lost my ability to ‘delicately parse things out.’  Worse, I was left speaking in a whisper, with no hope of recovering my voice.  This left me bereft of the music career I had been pursuing for my whole life, stripping me of my hard-earned talents and dreams. 
 
 
~ So Carnal, it’s Spiritual ~
 
As my life path slipped from my grasp, moral clarity evaded me.  I involved myself with men that fell short of my ideals, did drugs even though it was against my previous convictions, and made other compromises to my once rigid standards.  This is how I devolved into my most base form, Anäeia – short for ‘Annihilate.’  She was a conquerer, heartbreaker, hooked on drugs, sex and appetite; an animal.  Anäeia is pictured here with an LSD tablet on her tongue, hungry and ready to feed, with men in the background. Most photographs of her are nude, scarred and bruised, jarring to the senses, yet magnetic. The sheer wildness of her encapsulates the idea that you’re only free when you have nothing to lose. She embodies the myth of the dark trickster which encapsulates my primary cognitive function: Se.
 
Anäeia was a vampire, undead yet not alive; stripped of her humanity.  She was an animal and a symbol of something primal, but not human.  Her trajectory had been ripped from her ruthlessly, leaving her bereft of direction and dignity.  She hunted to fulfill the desires of the flesh, but what she yearned for most deeply was the soulfelt sense of purpose she once possessed, and the innocent wonder that spawned from it.  Without Ji (conviction and purity) and Pi (long term development of an internal map), she was unleashed, hungry, and empty.
 
I longed to recover my innocence and to embody my deeper calling once again.  In a desperate attempt to reorient myself, I studied Jung, pored over my psyche and learned to explore and control my dreams.  I would often take LSD and restrict myself to specific artistic mediums to see what was residing in my unconscious.  When I was sober, I would compare the results to old diaries, photographs and music I’d written, mourning the loss of hope and seeking a coherent narrative. 
 
Over the years, I rebuilt my values and redirected my trajectory toward a purpose.  My reawakening began when I rose from the ashes, singing through my whisper and leading a band to perform my music.  The albums were attached to stories and concepts which were expressed through three manifestations of myself: Erica Xenne (Fi), Prince Ruby Valentine (Ni), and Riki Jane Wild (Te).  I did not know cognitive functions at the time, but this happened organically, and the orientation of each alter-ego is clear.  
 
 
~ Art is the Blood of the Exile ~
 
The surname Xenne combines ‘foreigner’ or ‘stranger’ in the prefix Xen- with ‘not’ in the suffix -Ne. I was alone in an alien world, but no longer a stranger to myself.  I often wore white when I sang in my youth; likewise, Erica Xenne was depicted in white. She resurrected the ghost of my voice and, along with it, my innocence. 

White is essentially Ji: it reflects the colors of the world, but doesn’t absorb them. It mirrors them through music, art and empathy, while remaining separate and true to itself.  My original form was a singer whose music connected to the heart of life; in the Erosia Myth, Erica Xenne embodies this. The magical muse believes in her love for Prince Ruby and holds on to her principles at any cost.  She was born from two people playing music together, absent of any physical contact, and raised by animals in the outer islands of Erosia.  Thus, she was made of pure music and life-force, divorced from any particular species or culture; an entity unto herself.  Since the songs came from her, I wore white when I sang through my whisper.  She embodied the druidic myth of Fi, connecting to the heart of the world in a pure, primal manner, unhindered by social standards and earthly trauma, immune to the corruption in the world, retaining her integrity.  Yet ultimately, she left Erosia, sacrificing her magic power (singing) to follow Ruby into exile. Though she was warned that Dystopia would corrupt their souls and they could never return to Erosia, she was determined, at the very least, to keep Erosia alive in Ruby’s heart.

 

~ Without a Muse, Music is just Math ~

Prince Ruby Valentine was a mysterious man of royalty.  Unlike Erica, Ruby was tied to a wider context from the moment of conception, and he remained determined to untangle its implications throughout his life.  He was born to Queen Onyx Valentine, the best ruler Erosia ever knew, but she died in childbirth.  He rejected the duties and accolades he was afforded as a Prince, as they seemed inappropriate to him under these conditions, and instead took a vow of silence, determined to communicate only through music, poetry, prose and art, resisting the widespread effort to fill the air with meaningless words.  He retreated to a cabin in the woods and lured all manner of creatures with the call of his guitar.  The Erosia myth portrays the story of his exile from Erosia, resulting from his failure to believe in love, but his depth lies elsewhere.

From his earliest days, Prince Ruby contemplated the God of Erosia, known as Nokoma (“Animal” in his own language), who was credited for giving birth to Erosia.  Ruby wanted to unravel the story behind this and to understand Nokoma’s life as a mortal man, to unpack Erosia’s roots and cosmic significance.  It was the “Ruby” inside me who spawned the fantasy series about Nokoma’s evolution from man to God, which became my life’s work.  Together, Ruby and Erica elected to write the series from the perspective Nokoma’s soulmate; they both understood she was his “compass.”  Nokoma’s lover embodies “Ji” and is drawn to white and gold, but Nokoma himself mirrors me.  In contemplating Nokoma, Ruby is drawn to religions, symbols, typology, archetypes and more, to place both ‘self’ and ‘God’ in a wider context and tap into the rhythms of the world that connect all things, embodying Ni.  He views the world on a cosmic scale where everything is connected and remains detached from the present, as portrayed in the sardonic biography he posts on his profiles: “The line – between myth and religion, dream and reality, making love and fucking – is drawn wherever you start believing.  Believe what you will and have your way with me. Yours, Prince Ruby Valentine.”

 

~ Tell me the Odds; I’ll Beat them Senseless ~

The trinity is completed by Riki Jane Wild, the “manager,” of the band. She is excluded from the Erosia myth because she is from Earth, named after my father Richard and my mother, Jane.  She met Erica after she was exiled to Dystopia, heard her struggling to sing through her whisper, decided there was something fruitful and marketable in that fight, and designated herself Erica’s manager.  She was more reluctant to take Ruby under her wing, as he appeared lost and aimless, but she eventually came to appreciate his hidden genius and the way it inspired Erica.

Erica resisted the idea of organizing an album, as the songs were written for Ruby, who was against ‘trapping a song in a cage,’ but Riki convinced her that in spite of his ravings, he would appreciate her compiling memories of Erosia.  If not him, others might remember their own personal utopia and overcome setbacks to achieve their dreams.  Erica was moved by this idea, and agreed to buckle down in the studio.

Riki helped Erica to organize her project and battle her many symptoms, to sing despite tremendous odds. She managed Erica’s band, booked shows, auditioned musicians, promoted events, made fliers, took pictures, photoshopped, edited video, and reminded Erica to stop poring over each note so she could finish larger projects.  Erica was determined to capture a perfect reflection of Erosia in the album, to feed Ruby some life and remind him of his heart; but Riki enforced deadlines and made sure the album was released. She understood that ideals were meaningless without concrete results.  As stated in the myth of Te, she served to remind Erica, “your goals don’t care about your feelings.” Due to Riki’s iron hand, the musicians who played shows with the band ‘Erosian Exile’ lovingly referred to her as “Hitler.”

The mythology of Erica Xenne and Prince Ruby Valentine worked together in tandem, incomplete without the presence of the other, and neither one was capable of manifesting on Earth without Riki, who worked to capture their musings in concrete form.  Riki was dedicated to this pair, but also embarked on her own journey: she wrote about politics and other topics extraneous to the band, found jobs, fulfilled responsibilities, and engaged Earthly activities for their own sake. Indeed, the Te development was independent.  

 

~ A Vessel through which Passion Emerges ~

Anäeia was so hungry and expansive, she left no room for additional alter-egos.  To create the beast, she destroyed the human I had been before.  She is the shadow of my current incarnation, which is more holistic, as it combines destruction and creation, passion and purpose, love and war, now and eternity. 
 
I have come to sense that, at any given moment, I am animal, human and symbol at once.  Animal is my visceral survival instincts (desire, hunger, carnality); human is my conceptualization of my experience (ideas, endeavors, beliefs); and symbol is my legacy (image, archetype, energy).  I cannot control my symbolism, as it is determined by how others view me; however, if my animal and human are balanced, then my symbolism comes to match my sense of self.  
 
Recently, I was informed that my work was reminiscent of the Goddess Kali.  I researched her and discovered that her mythos reflected mine, from my aesthetic to my mission.  Like me, her ‘nudity’ – artistic, physical or psychological – strips others of their illusions, laying their truth bare. Cycles of resurgence encapsulate my life in the manner of a phoenix; likewise, Kali represents the dissemination of the boundary between life and death, illuminating the timeless and infinite.  Kali incorporates my deepest purpose, which is why I channeled her unbeknownst to myself, and she is often associated with the Se-Ni axis in the Gamma quadra.  Taking each function separately, as well as Gamma as a whole, it is clear that the manifestations of myself – which are well documented through photos, writing and music – match with these function delineations and their mythology.
 
 
Anaeia 
The wild pink/red beast, hungry, vampiric and bold (Se)
 
 
Erica Xenne
The pure moral compass wearing white, at one with nature, druid reflecting the heart of life in her song (Fi)

 
 
Riki Jane Wild
The Earthly “get-to-it” manager, sassy bitch and speaker of political truths (Te)
 
 
Prince Ruby Valentine 
The ‘allusion’ or ‘hint’ of something you cant quite see, the shadow, figure in the distance, magnetizing animals and women, raving unintelligibly, weaving a tapestry of archetypes, tapping into the rhythm of the world (Ni)
 
 
Nokoma – Animal – Volcana
The vessel through which passion emerges; the phoenix rising from the ashes.  Timeless symbol of resurrection and fight, holding a mirror to the world to show them the bold, naked truth until their illusions explode; deathless, naked and eternal (Gamma)

Real Self

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There is no “real self” underneath the masks we wear, aside from archetypal themes each individual falls into, which others have occupied repeatedly throughout time. There is nothing unique and individual under the sun, but our potentials exist within a certain axis. At our best we would “align” with a cosmic purpose that our character is able to channel or fulfill. At worst we would separate ourselves from that and force ourselves to enact a rhythm that is unnatural for us, thus falling out of harmony with the world. The “real self” is not something “under” our masks, but rather something that we must strive to become.
 
The deepest “illusion” we fall prey to is that we’re separate from the cosmos; that our individual life is an independent entity.  It is a biological imperative to feel this way, because it results from fear of death which feeds our survival instincts. Due to fear of death, we lie to ourselves in a desperate attempt to individuate. But true individuation and realization occurs when we realize death is just part of a cycle.  We all know this intellectually, but we feel it when we are aligned with a greater purpose, and we see our influence conjoined with others to contribute to the collective. Anything less than that, and the only thing we can do is make our lies bigger and louder, to feel like we matter on our own.
 
The idea that we possess a true self “beneath the masks” implicitly separates us from alignment with the whole. Its a lie we tell ourselves which feeds our survival instincts, but weakens our awareness.  If we conceive of the masks as an expression of self, then we come closer to acknowledging that our performance in the world is fulfilling our connection to the greater scheme, which is the most honest thing we can do.  Humanity will last longer than any single one of us.  We are each one note in a cosmic song.  Playing the wrong note “just to stand out” – or feeling like our real note is something other than the one people are hearing – is clinging to an illusion.
 
There is a real self, but it’s not separate from presentation; rather, presentation is the path toward actualizing it, so that the idea of self is not just empty chatter.  Some people believe their real self lies beyond the masks they wear, yet fail to realize this type of chatter can be empty even if they keep it to themselves.  They have a narrative or some amorphous sense of “who they are ” that they think they’re hiding from the world, but it is merely a fantasy.  A lack of words or “keeping it hidden” doesn’t actually protect this narrative from being false.  It just heightens the sense that the “presentation” is separate from the “real” identity, which is a lie, so the lies build upon lies until nothing is real.
 
To me, we are all animal, human and symbol.  The animal is our instincts, which are the same for everyone.  The human is the mind that decides what we will do and who we will be.  The symbol is the impression we leave behind for others.   Many of us try to control that image, but the symbol is out of our control. The collective will see us how it sees us. We can’t control that, but we can control our actions which lead to choices, which then leave an impression.  If we align our animal instincts with our human mind, achieving inner balance, its very likely the way we see ourselves will match how others see us. 

The Prophesy

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Love is the mother of creation
Death is the father of transformation
Life is the daughter of infusion
Maker and breaker of illusion

The moon dances with her star
Burning for him from afar
Her shadow lures his light to surge
Cries of love and war converge

Chaos sings its fateful claim
The rhythm of the world aflame
From whence its heart is torn,
Erosia is born.

 

 

Misogyny & Misandry

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A friend wrote a post saying she won’t be offended if a man talks to her. She won’t feel like due to the patriarchy, he thinks he’s entitled etc. I completely agree with her, and I find it depressing that this even has to be said. This patriarchy-bashing and man-hating has reached a level of complete insanity.

Men talking to women, men holding the door, men asking you out, being a little determined – so what? Get real people. Masculinity is a REAL force in the world – if you choose not to honor it, you’re living in a fantasy land. Cuckolding entire sub-cultures won’t do you any good; it won’t help you find a balanced relationship. If you want a man who is strong enough to handle you, then stop squandering male expression at every turn.

Unfortunately, both conservatism and liberalism are responsible for this particular modern disaster.

For the record, I’m not anti-religion. However, there is a tendency in some religions, especially more conservative sectors, to want women to cover up. In some cases, forcing them. This is across the board – Christianity, Islam, Judaism. There are sectors that care less about this, and then more extremists and orthodox who cover people up – in some cases, they cover up people of both genders. But there’s a strong focus on ‘modesty’ for women and not being presented as a sexual object, which of course brings to light the problem that it’s ASSUMED that men will otherwise do bad things, think bad thoughts etc; if we present in a sexy way. This makes a sexy woman, or a woman AT ALL – into a kind of ‘taboo.’ Which makes it exciting, titillating, sinful – to get just an inch closer to her and then go home and whack off.

Personally, I’m a married woman very in love with my husband, who is my soulmate. Anyone that has seen his picture would understand why there is no way in hell that I’d want anyone else, and I mean that on every level; superficially, he looks like a supermodel; more deeply, his intelligence and sensitivity is palpable. I am completely loyal to him, and him to me.

Yet both of us enjoy being admired for our beauty, our sexiness. We both encourage each other to wear whatever we want in public. If others want to admire us that’s fine, but we are also compassionate and don’t play games with others or with each other, so we make it clear to anyone we talk to that we’re married and monogamous.

Yet beyond that, why not be admired? It’s a basic human instinct. Knowing I can go out in sexy clothes and the world can be my stage, is a motivator for going to the gym, eating healthy; it also makes it FUN to go out. Usually we go out together.. we have no desire for a ‘separate social life’ – so we make an appearance as a pair. But on occasions where we must be separate, like around work, why not come home with stories about people who admired our beauty? Why not feel good about ourselves?

It’s a human instinct to want to admire others’ beauty and be admired. Some people feel this less than others, which is perfectly fine, but for those of us who get a thrill and connect on the basis of beauty and mutual admiration, and who see life as an art; why not indulge it? This kind of thing – for those of us who want to do it – DEMYSTIFIES the appeal of sexiness, of womanliness – and shows how it’s human. It demystifies the sexual undercurrents in conversation, since there’s literally nothing wrong with lusting a little as long as boundaries are set. Healthy desire leads to inspiration and excitement; breaks the monotony. Honoring the desire to be sexy makes for a more honest psyche, where people aren’t ‘cheating and being freaks behind closed doors’ due to all the repression they force themselves into every day.

If someone WANTS to be modest, let her. Let him. I don’t care. But making cultural rules about it, will never work. There will always be people with high sex drives, with soulful styles, who want to sing like the birds even if they are taken, just because that song and dance is beautiful and beauty is inspiring. There are people who just enjoy being looked at. There are people who are not monogamous. So what?

(I already anticipate the response: STDS! Pregnancy! Yes, these are real issues. I am saying this assuming that in a world with less oppression, there would be MORE focus on how to be RESPONSIBLE about sex, rather than shoving it under the rug and pretending it doesn’t exist, only to have people cheating the system behind closed doors and finding themselves infected and pregnant with unwanted children, which is the real outcome of sexually repressed sub-groups and societies. There are individuals who are pious and are exceptions to this; but forcing it on a wide scale clearly does not work.)

On a wide ideological scale, conservatism represses femininity (in both men and women), whereas liberalism represses masculinity (specifically in men), thus resulting in a need for women to fill that role in lieu of seeking to love and to nurture. To be clear, men also want to love and nurture. But if men are not allowed to aggress, then the average man will devolve into a dependent pussy sucking your titty. That is not fulfilling for any of us.

Conservatism says “men shouldn’t cry” and “women should be modest,” repressing unbridled emotional display and beauty. Liberalism says “men shouldn’t aggress” and “women should not need men,” oppressing very obvious parts of our nature too. It is fine for ANYONE to assert their will, man or woman alike; and if men are socially not allowed to do this, then women end up feeling undesired or unfulfilled by men who aren’t working, aren’t asserting themselves, etc. As for the men, the suicide rates speak for themselves: they feel cuckolded, uninspired, unwanted, ineffective, creepy. Women, this is not good for you either – especially if you’re hetero – but even if you have sons, friends, brothers, coworkers who are male. An emasculated society is a limp world that can’t get momentum, can’t assert, can’t individuate. Having assertive women won’t make up for it, because these women still have an instinctual desire to find lovers, no matter how loudly they insist they ‘don’t need no man.’ Look deeper. Beyond that, if men in society are squandered due to being told they can’t assert their will, can’t “manspread” and sit comfortably, must squash their balls to avoid female wrath – society will have weak links and will perish.

Sexless women and emasculated men are not ideals. It’s fine if individuals express this way, but praising it as some ideal is not the solution to social problems; it is more problematic than human nature itself. People cry, desire, flirt, ask each other out, assert their will, aggress.. your social constructs will not stop them. At best, you will push these acts deeper behind closed doors, where they will come out in extreme ways (rape, cheating, whoring, etc).

All the extreme constructs do is create more divides, oppression, repression and hatred between people, as they identify more and more with this sector or that, in opposition to one another. To speak for myself, I am not “a white, middle class, chronically ill, Jewish, female, cisgendered, bisexual, right-or-left-leaning American,” I’m fucking Erica Xenne, and I will express as such. If all you can see is a statistic, that says more about you than me.

In this world of categories, ideals and constructs, I find that exploring my own nature is paramount. These rules and games will never tell me who I am, nor will they contain me; I have always known this. If you explore who you are, and you express who you are and observe what happens, you learn a lot about the world and it’s easier to see the trends for what they are. That is my theory anyway. Subjectivity and individualism do not necessarily begin and end with serving the self. If you know who you are and assert it, the world shows its true colors in your wake.

Prologue

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Some people believe Erosia doesn’t exist, and others claim it can only be found in a dream. Some suggest that in order to see Erosia, one must believe in it first. It is up to you to decide what you will, and you may call me mad if you wish. Either way, I will indulge my memories.

Chapter 1: Erosia Chapter 2: The Muse
Chapter 3: Prince Poison Chapter 4: Dystopia

*Work-in-progress – many photos to organize.

 

Prince Ruby Valentine was born to Queen Onyx Valentine, the best queen Erosia ever had – but she died in childbirth, leaving Ruby with the curse of being poison to women. Early in childhood, he decided not to speak and to communicate only through music, art, poetry and prose, which he used to reflect and consume the hearts of his lovers.

The Valentine family was rumored to have vampiric heritage because they used their magic to control others, but they did it for the sake of community and upholding the values of their God. Ruby disappeared from the palace whenever he pleased and seduced on his own, forsaking his royal duties.

Ruby thirsted for inspiration and feasted on the dreams of others. His magic gift was to make dreams come true with his hands: he lured his prey with music that reflected their deepest fantasies and, as they succumbed to him, embodied their ideal lover. Once he made their dreams come true, he became their only yearning, and they could dream only of him. The irony is, the person they dreamed of was not Ruby, but rather, their own dreams which he happened to enact. Thus, Ruby got bored and left, looking for a deeper fill; someone with enough passion and depth to fill him and make him whole.

Ruby was enslaved by self-loathing for killing his mother and his need to break free from his royal duties.. yet the longer he ran, the more violently these shadows consumed him and the emptier his inner landscape became. As his world grew more arid, he grew increasingly insatiable and yearned to escape into more conquests. Then he met white-souled muse Erica Xenne, whose inner life was so intense and elaborate, he could not possibly drain it dry. She was a never ending well of inspiration and he sensed she might be the one to satisfy him. What he failed to realize was that he could not see her without facing himself.

Erica Xenne was born while two musicians played a song so real and heartfelt that she spawned from it. Her first act as a living being was to inspire these shy musicians to confess their feelings: upon seeing her sprout from their passion itself, they surrendered to their desire for the first time and remained together throughout the rest of their days. Yet Erica was not born of flesh like them and did not fit into their world. She was a muse who reflected their humanity, but lacked her own.

Much like Ruby, Erica possessed the power to reflect the colors of the world, but unlike him, she mirrored the truth rather than embodying illusions. Just as the color white reflects but does not absorb, Erica mirrored the core of people in the moment, then emerged just as before. When looking at Erica, people saw their demons exposed so brightly that they were blinded, but their darkness could never destroy her. On the contrary, she yearned for anything demonic enough to cast a shadow over her whiteness, even for a moment, as it made her feel immersed.

She lived among wildlife in Erosia, singing with the birds like an animal reflecting on the human entanglement she lacked, yet also feeling more at home among creatures who were true to themselves as she was. Her music broke people open with desires more real to her than her life, though her deepest yearning of all was to find someone of her species, who could speak her language of passion. There was no limit to the heavens and hells she would bring to light in order to feel her heart, and compared to these deep dives into her desires, the outside world was grey. The closest she could get to loving was to expose her inner world and allow others to see their own longing reflected in her bare naked disclosure.

Everything changed when she met Ruby. Where once she was isolated and white, he made her heart bleed red. She had always been honest, but he made her REAL.

He feared to touch her, lest he drain her of inspiration and ruin their love like he did with other women. Worse, he feared to reveal to her that underneath his lure, there was nothing but hunger and emptiness.

They played music together, communicating in the language that only they could share, but in the end, they could not resist the temptation to make love. As they consumed one another, Erica began to turn red, becoming a reflection of Ruby himself, with nothing left of her but lust and obsession. Ruby felt empty as usual; he needed to feast on her dreams, but all he could taste was the ashes of her innocence and the false hopes he had fed her. His inner hell had been exposed and reflected back in his face, leaving him more dead inside than ever. He could not look at Erica without seeing himself, and if he could not love Erica, he could love no one. He failed to believe in love and, at once, disappeared from Erosia. He left Erica naked with his guitar, starving for him, tainted red from their love making, doomed to obsess over him for eternity.

She wanted to follow him, but the Valentines told her she would lose her magic powers and that once someone was corrupted in Dystopia, they could never return to Erosia, as they could never love purely again. Regardless, she left Erosia with Ruby’s guitar and turned up in Dystopia, NY. When she arrived, she had no voice, as her singing had been her magic power. She was doomed to speak in a whisper, but did not regret her choice, since Ruby was her muse and there was nothing to sing about without him.

Although Ruby lost his magic power, he could never shake his vampiric nature and his seductive allure consumed women in Dystopia just the same. He slowly built up his guitar skills and used his vampiric attunement to pull people’s dreams from their souls and reflect them in his music.

Erica spoke in a whisper, but desperate songs about Prince Ruby Valentine wrote themselves through her. She sang of her memories of Erosia when they longed for each other; she sang of the loss of her hope and dreams and the emptiness she felt when he left her alone; she sang of the wild sex and soulful songs they shared; she sang of her jealous hatred of the other women he seduced, she sang of his reflection she kept seeing in the mirror. Music poured through her relentlessly, and she had no choice but to let it out. Ultimately she released her first album, ‘Slave to Freedom,’ originally called ‘Freedom Broke the Exile’s Heart’ — dedicated to Prince Ruby. It was formatted as a conversation between her vocals and his guitar.

She knew her obsession with him would consume her, destroy her and rebirth her; he was the only thing that was real to her. Where once she yearned for her fantasy lover, she now obsessed over one she believed was real, who barely slipped from her grasp. Her album reflected her love and longing.. but was it truly love, or was she pining for the shadow of a dream that could never come true? Did she truly love Ruby, or did she love the reflection of her hunger that she saw in his eyes? Perhaps she and Prince Ruby Valentine were two sides of one person, doomed to destroy and inspire each other for all eternity. Theirs is a story of sex and death; their music is rebirth.

Chapter 1: The Valentines

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