Listen below to my talk presented at the "Women’s Ancestral Wisdom, Witches, and Spiritual Connections to Nature" panel during the Women Rising! New Visions for a Post-Patriarchal World Conference (San Francisco, CA, October 12-14, 2018).
Remantling Serpent Energies for the Healing of Post-Patriarchal Possibilities for the Body, Intimacy, and Futurities
Many feminist and women’s spirituality scholars have been asking how we may make ourselves more available to an imagination that orients us better to becoming post-patriarchal subjects of post-patriarchal moments.
Centuries of living within societies of domination has left our bodies, nervous systems, wills, and histories with accumulated trauma which, we have found, acts as a limitation upon—or wars upon—the arc of the possible. This trauma must not only be discharged to make us more available to ourselves, our promise, and each other: it must be transformed in a way that the energy released contributes to the liberation of all life. Engaging primarily the traces of serpent reverence found in South Asian religious, folk, and nondominant traditions, my paper suggests that the medicine of snakes holds keys for our safer embodied being, relationships, and resilience. Being in this moving condition of safety orients us to ways of relating that center instead of othering, include instead of excluding, vision and become instead of fearing.
I argue that a partnership with ancient serpent energies can assist with individual, collective, and intergenerational healing. I will be examining oracular traditions as well as findings and claims from complexity theory, neurobiology, and epigenetics to propose a multi-pronged framework of remantling serpent energies to work with us. Which snake practices found in tradition may be reclaimed in keeping with an ethic of care and reciprocity, and which of them need to be decolonized? I explore how to call on and reconnect with serpent energies in a way that rebuilds our ancient solidarity with the Earth, as well as bridges across the borders of coloniality and modernity/rationality.
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