Tuesday, August 18, 2009

From Catholic to Sufi Ways of Knowing

The Sisters (of Charity, not Perpetual Indulgence) were in town last weekend to bear witness at Peterson Air Force Base, and at the N-8 missile silo where Carl Kabat was arrested August 6. There's a wonderful speech by Sister Louise Lears, in four parts at my YouTube library, that got me thinking about how Catholic ritual intersects with activism. Just as interesting was the skit by Donna Johnson and MaryLynn Sheetz, featuring the two nuns, Edna and Loodeen, which they regularly reprise at every annual Sisters Witness Against War. This year's was particularly interesting, with a "Mental Floss" presentation featuring the super-sized puppet, Sister Prophylaxis, otherwise known as Diana Floss:

There's also a wonderful First Strike Theatre spoken-word piece on truth decay. On Saturday, we had a gathering up near New Raymer, Colorado at the N-8 silo, with a surprise visit from Jack and Felice Cohen-Joppa, publishers of The Nuclear Resister in Tucson - they happened to be in the neighborhood for a family reunion (and this was boondocks).

Since I was never one for the Catholic guilt ritual after Binky Brown Meets the Holy Virgin Mary, I got a different spiritual purge on Tuesday by listening to more Sufi-influenced work by Ben Chasny and his friends in Six Organs of Admittance. This time around, Luminous Night, they include violinist Eyvind Kang and flautist Hans Teuber, but do not include the incomparable Elisa Ambrogio of Magik Markers, who was around for the last couple Six Organs rides. Here's a Village Voice page bringing us up to date with both Elisa and Ben, and here's a video from the last album:

1 comment:

Ruth said...

Growing up in my home Catholics were part of the "mystery cult" buried somewhere in the Bible. In other words, the enemy. At some point I came to appreciate high church stuff for the wonder of it, after Baptist services that were too casual. But two things in juxta keep on: the whole sin thing and the constant need for confession, that really bugs me. But then the amazing commitment to serving the poor, the needy, and being Christ in the community. These sisters are awesome, I admire their boldness. Thank you for witnessing them.