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19 November 2009 @ 12:14 am
In which we stretch an analogy a little ...  
I was talking with a lovely young person earlier today about her idea for an hp_religion fest. Despite the fact that I am a godless heathen, I find religion endlessly fascinating and think that it works very well as a lens through which to view the Potterverse (obviously, since the author was consciously constructing a Christian allegory in parts).

Thinking about this, I had an epiphany of sorts, which relates strongly to the current brouhaha* on mpreg among my fandom friends.

My atheism does not affect the religiosity of some of my friends. Their beliefs do not affect my atheism. I would consider it the height of rudeness to tell them they cannot believe in their sundry gods, and they, after a cursory effort to convert me in a few cases, do not tell me that I must believe in one of their religions.

Some of them do believe that I am going to hell. Some of them believe that I am missing some basic truth of the universe. I believe that they believe in something a bit basically odd. Every now and then I have one of those conversations that goes: 'But how can you believe there's nothing?' 'How can you believe in something that is obviously an anthropological artefact?' 'No seriously, nothing? How?!'

However, in both cases, it doesn't matter. My lack of belief, my friends' beliefs, they are things that are important to US, not things that we need each other to adopt. The things that unite us, that bind us, are far deeper and more important.

Similarly, I think that there are lots of things in fandom that we take very very personally, but they are important to us as individuals, and when we try to make the personal public, it's just a recipe for disaster.

One of my friends loves mpreg because it soothes her soul, one of them loves it because it allows her to investigate whole new ideas in stories. I think it's fairly daft because I think stories about babies and pregnancy are essentially daft, just as I don't like avocado and am the least romantic person in the world. It doesn't matter! I leave more avocado for pushdragon ! My mpreg atheism does not weaken anyone's mpreg faith! It's exactly the same as the way that gay marriage doesn't weaken straight marriages.

Anyway, heathen_archive , come back! Maggie and Liz, chins up! And everyone else, like what you like, even if it's not me ;-)


* It's certainly more than a kerfuffle, but not yet a schism, and too personal to some to be considered wank.
 
 
 
Pureblood Princessraitala on November 18th, 2009 01:42 pm (UTC)
Oh dear, sometimes we do so well, here in fandom, and have extended discussions where everyone keeps their head and keeps respectful. Other times it's like everyone has been caught after a really bad day and the whole thing descends into scowling and tearful recriminations for no reason at all.

It's a real shame, because I'd have liked to have a sensible, casual discussion about Mpreg. I don't enjoy reading it myself, but it's interesting to me the role it has taken in slash fandom and the strong responses it elicits from both sides of the fence. I was surprised how personal the whole thing got and how quickly, because it is a fandom-centric issue, not one that directly relates to RL values like chan or non-con. Weird, huh? Maybe everyone needs a cookie?


Edited at 2009-11-18 01:44 pm (UTC)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 01:48 pm (UTC)
That looks delicious! And yes, it was a bit of a startling explosion. I hope that everyone is feeling better by tomorrow. I wanted to do a book review tonight ...
This is fandom. - wemyss on November 18th, 2009 06:21 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: This is fandom. - raitala on November 18th, 2009 06:33 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Reason never defeats wank. - wemyss on November 18th, 2009 06:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: This is fandom. - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 08:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Heather: Kitty Lovefaynia on November 18th, 2009 02:20 pm (UTC)
*tackles* I love you. Just saying. Because I am uncertain if I've said it to you before. And you just said all of what I completely failed to say over the past two days in a much nicer, saner way. IDK. I fail at tact maybe?

Although, I AM STILL SCARRED BY YOUR SARAH PALIN ROLE PLAY COMMENT OF YESTERDAY. WHY blamebrampton WHYYYYYYY?!?! D':
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 02:24 pm (UTC)
I am sorry darling! In further terrifying news, ever since she appeared, I have been trying to perfect the half-beehive. I recognise that this is a disturbing development.
(no subject) - thisgirl_is on November 18th, 2009 03:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 01:51 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - faynia on November 18th, 2009 04:24 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 08:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
oops: Smileoddishly on November 18th, 2009 02:36 pm (UTC)
Well, I like you. So. :)

Also, hey! So I'm coming back to Melbourne next Easter -- four months today, in fact :) -- and I'll be there for a month, so I was thinking of maybe heading up to Sydney for a while? If you're around/not around over any particular time in March/April, you should tell me, and I'll aim for a mutually convenient time to head your way :)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 02:58 pm (UTC)
YAY! And not Easter itself, but I will be around for most of the rest of those two months. I am going to be in Oxford, London and Paris from the 6th to the 22nd of December, any chance of catching up with you?
Bryoneybryoneybrynn on November 18th, 2009 02:36 pm (UTC)
HP religion fest, huh? *takes a large step back from that ticking timebomb* Very interesting in theory but oh, I hope there's some good wank control measures in place.

As to the rest, it's been a hard couple days all round. Which I think might be reflective of the fact that it seems as though the last few months/year have been particularly rough, lots of tender places that don't respond well to being poked... :(
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:01 pm (UTC)
I was thinking of offering myself to be the official slapping spoon if she goes ahead with it. Mostly because I like slapping. Not like that. You have a dirty mind ;-)

Yeah, I get that, but I am also of the school of thought that says sometimes a little stoicism can go a very long way, and if that's too much, then an intellectual argument rather than an emotive one is always to be preferred since people can cope with 'I disagree' enormously better than 'you're fucked'.

Of course, I am a cyborg, so these things come naturally to me.

(no subject) - bryoneybrynn on November 18th, 2009 03:15 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thisgirl_is on November 18th, 2009 03:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 01:50 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Cyborg, British, it's all much of a muchness. - wemyss on November 18th, 2009 06:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Cyborg, British, it's all much of a muchness. - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 08:53 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - vaysh on November 18th, 2009 06:43 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:18 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - angelofcaffeine on November 18th, 2009 08:13 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:26 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - angelofcaffeine on November 18th, 2009 09:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - angelofcaffeine on November 18th, 2009 08:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 01:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - angelofcaffeine on November 19th, 2009 02:09 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - angelofcaffeine on November 19th, 2009 08:19 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 09:24 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - angelofcaffeine on November 19th, 2009 09:28 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Cheryl Dysondysonrules on November 18th, 2009 02:53 pm (UTC)
WTF IS GOING ON? I have been too busy to give my f-list more than a cursory glance, so I mostly missed the whole drama, except to note that some of my friends are angry at others of my friends and now LJ has become a soap opera. Or Junior High. Or a Junior High Soap Opera. And why does that make me want to write crackfic?

Anyway, I agree with you (except the avocado part, because how can you not love those green globes of slippery goodness spread over tortilla chips... okay, they are sort of slimy and have a strange taste until you mix them with salsa...) and, um...

I just realized my comment has no point whatsoever.

Carry on.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:04 pm (UTC)
It's the sliminess that gets me. I concede they actually taste quite palatable, but the mouth feel ...

And you're not alone in your surprise, Cheryl. I thought this was going to be a scroll-past debate until it suddenly went nuclear.

Pointless comments are often charming and friendly, you know!
(no subject) - dysonrules on November 18th, 2009 03:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:25 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - dysonrules on November 18th, 2009 03:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 01:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Libbylibby_drew on November 18th, 2009 02:59 pm (UTC)
Now all we need is a way to spread your good sense around the world a bit more.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:02 pm (UTC)
Give me a slapping spoon and a huge travel budget! I will be moderate in my use of the spoon!
(no subject) - libby_drew on November 18th, 2009 03:06 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - libby_drew on November 18th, 2009 03:09 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Admiral of Strange Shipsnoeon on November 18th, 2009 03:03 pm (UTC)
I'm now imagining the etiquette rule at the fandom dinner table: "Do not discuss politics, religion, or mpreg."

Oxford, London, Paris. You LUCKY bramblebush.

blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:05 pm (UTC)
AHAHAHAHA! Yes! Although in my house we would not talk if we did not discuss politics ...

It is shaping up as the Huge Trip Of Catching Up With My Friends And Fave Galleries and Museums, to the point that, having culled the list of friends I will have time to see, I am now having to cull the museums. Sacrilege!
(no subject) - noeon on November 18th, 2009 03:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 01:21 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - adores_draco on November 18th, 2009 03:33 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Coffeejunkii: mpreggersunitecoffeejunkii on November 18th, 2009 03:04 pm (UTC)
hmm, i am clearly more out of the loop than i thought. i'd heard about people discussing mpreg [which happens every once in a while, as we all know], but i hadn't yet heard there was kerfuffling. methinks i need to do some investigating...
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:07 pm (UTC)
Or post pics of Bradley James looking very very hot, that calms people down!

Well, it makes me happy at least ...

Also: EEEK! BABY! *Picks up dangerous and easily mangled items and pops them on high shelves*
(no subject) - coffeejunkii on November 18th, 2009 03:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - coffeejunkii on November 18th, 2009 03:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - noeon on November 18th, 2009 03:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - adores_draco on November 18th, 2009 03:37 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - coffeejunkii on November 18th, 2009 03:46 pm (UTC) (Expand)
adores_dracoadores_draco on November 18th, 2009 03:24 pm (UTC)
I've absolutely no idea what has been going on around here lately but it does sound stormy! Heathen_archive is gone? That's a HUGE loss! She's not only a really talented artist but she's funny, smart and witty. Did she say why she was leaving? Please, please, please come back, heathen_archive! We need you!

Religious H/D? Why not. I was raised in a religious family but I seldom go to church. Pretty much the only reason why I still believe the whole story is the sad state of mankind. If this is the best this universe can offer we're really in trouble. Btw my personal heaven is a lovely place, where all people are beautiful and kind to each other (am I going to be in trouble!), animals are nice and cute and the nature is wonderful. Waterfalls, flowers - the whole lot. Everything is nice,clean and smells lovely. The only thing that worries me is playing the harp. Well, I suppose they'll teach me how to play if I ever make it there. The other option kind of seems more likely.

I've a new obsession. I'm playing FarmVille in Facebook. My life is sad...but my farm is beautiful and I've found the cutest gay guy who flirts with me shamelessly. He's soooo adorable - and young but I don't need to tell anyone that. ;)

blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:29 pm (UTC)
Young is always adorable!

I like that version of heaven, and once lived on a commune that was a bit like that. It was spooky and I kept waiting for people to stop being kind and reasonable. Soy milk was about as cruel as anyone got. And folk singing. But the harp playing was actually quite good.

I have my fingers crossed that heathen is having a few personal days and will then be right back. Otherwise I will be begging along with you. XXX, BB
(no subject) - adores_draco on November 18th, 2009 03:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 01:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ldydark1 on November 19th, 2009 05:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
Keeper of the Superfluous Es!: Draco/Nakey/Charlotteschaosthemostepotente on November 18th, 2009 03:41 pm (UTC)
Hey, sweetie, how was NZ? Just about to dive into Little Red Courgette! *G*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 03:49 pm (UTC)
GORGEOUS! Though I have jetlag from a country with a two-hour time difference. HOW? (Actually, that has happened several times, whereas the Europe/Oz or US/Oz diff doesn't seem to hurt as much)

Er, I have no plausible excuses for that fic. At least there are a few good gags ;-)
(no subject) - themostepotente on November 18th, 2009 04:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:11 pm (UTC) (Expand)
calanthe_fics on November 18th, 2009 04:39 pm (UTC)
*cough*

I just wrote a fic on religion and not one person left a comment screaming at the way I bashed organised religion!

I thought Heathen created two separate identities? A personal one and an art one? Have both gone?
Vaysh Swiftstormvaysh on November 18th, 2009 06:45 pm (UTC)
*coughs, too*

I just wrote a fic on religion and not one person left a comment screaming at the way I bashed organised religion! Obviously, it's going to be the pro-religion fics that will be bashed. ;)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:21 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - vaysh on November 19th, 2009 11:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 11:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - vaysh on November 19th, 2009 11:34 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 01:33 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - calanthe_fics on November 19th, 2009 06:45 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 19th, 2009 07:47 am (UTC) (Expand)
oldenuf2nboldenuf2nb on November 18th, 2009 05:04 pm (UTC)
I thought of you this morning. Sarah Palin's comic book drops today, and the idiots are out in droves all over Michigan to shake he tiny little hand. All white and middle class, of course. I cringe at the name she gives this country world wide. Time to move to Tahiti, clearly.

I saw what was going on, and other than a small comment at one friends post, refrained. This is a no win argument. I don't understand the vehemence, but I know that it's there. I do think, however, (putting on my thinky thoughts hat and holding my finger in the air, a la McGonnagall) that there does appear to be a bit of 'looking down the nose' on not only the genre, but the people who enjoy mpreg, as if it were a lesser genre, if you will. And I think the unfortunate part of that is that a good bit of it is, in fact, poorly written. For me, (and to be utterly honest here, when I first heard of mpreg, I had a great big ole WTF reaction) I only wrote it to begin with because I wanted to see if I could do it. I now have a not so secret love of the well written boys with babies, but I certainly understand why others don't. I guess what I don't get is why it can't be just another case of; yep, not for me!

My thought, and this is the cynic in me, (You see darling Brammers, you are not the only one)is that it's the trendy thing to list as a squick. Go through any fest list, and read down. Eight out of ten entries with list mpreg as a squick. And I can't help but wonder if they really don't like it, or it's a case of 'well, everyone else says they hate it'. But then, I'm old, and have watched many a generation of younger n'me have a pack mentality in terms of likes and dislikes.

And in regards to religion; Ah, the last great ticking time bomb. I recently had a fascinating conversation with a woman who does people's charts based on the Mayan calendar. Yes, the Mayan calendar of 2012 fame, a theory that made her giggle by the way. Anyway, according to her, I have reached the end of my personal calendar this year. At 52, you start over. Well, that would be nice, if those spare parts you mentioned were included. At any rate, I find myself questioning the existence not of God, but of rational thought in regards to God. So, I'm either a heretic, or going straight to hell, choose your poison.
Keeper of the Superfluous Es!: Draco/Side/Charlotteschaosthemostepotente on November 18th, 2009 06:38 pm (UTC)
Hey, I'm in Michigan and am so not shaking Palin's hand :P lol
(no subject) - mizbean on November 18th, 2009 07:03 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
cassie_blackcassie_black12 on November 18th, 2009 06:41 pm (UTC)
I think a hp_religion fest would certainly be interesting - especially since the books have come in for such criticism from some areas of organised religion. Could be a potential hot bed of conflict though.

I do enjoy reading your posts, you have such a wonderfully practical outlook on things that get the rest of us all het up :)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:18 pm (UTC)
I like practicality, and think it is a much under-rated virtue ;-)

Yes to the first, but I have seen several fics contain overtly religious content, from my Beneath Boundless Sky's compassionate church comfort to Cal's Blood and Brimstone's Pullman-esque established church critique. The fall out has been very minimal indeed: one comment to me, none so far to Cal.

Perhaps they will all need to have B titles ...
Vaysh Swiftstormvaysh on November 18th, 2009 06:46 pm (UTC)
Brammers' mpreg atheism
You are a wise woman, my friend. *bows*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:19 pm (UTC)
Re: Brammers' mpreg atheism
I learned it all from my friends. *Points in your direction as a good influence!*
Ali: Sendhil smilingalicambs on November 18th, 2009 07:27 pm (UTC)
hp religion fest... okay, I don't think this atheist can write that with the same kind of happy aplomb as you. I'm already squirming at the thought.

I appear to have missed the mpreg kerfuffle. :-)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on November 18th, 2009 09:23 pm (UTC)
Don't you find it all anthropologically fascinating? I have to confess that I do. But you're more than welcome to take the runs in opposite direction stance: I certainly have to a few fests in the past, some things scare the willies out of me!