|One of the pieces for my forthcoming book and deck," The Promethean Oracle."|
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"Holy-sh*t-Madame-the sky-is touching-your-nose" trippy!
I hadn't realized that it's been YEARS since I'd written that profile!
I guess that's because I've been kept very busy for those years. However, a long-awaited update:
I've been published: The Stone Circle Oracle, which can be found here-- www.schifferbooks.com/the-ston…
I will be published again! This time you can find the art in the slide show to your left. The deck will be all male energies, with characters drawn (literally) from Ancient Egyptian, Greek, Biblical, and Ancient Near Eastern traditions.
I have had three paintings published in the We'moon on the Wall calendar, which is nationally distributed. They are "I Rise Up, Not Without Help," "Badger Knows All in the Earth, Hawk Knows All in the Sky," and "Figure THIS One Out!"
Despite all this, I'm still not famous. LOL
The Springer Spaniels are still springy.
I'm still camping at Four Quarters Interfaith Sanctuary, and am on the Board of Directors, the gods help me.
My daughter is now about to turn 22, the gods help me even more!
Current Residence: Pennsylvania USA
Print preference: Giclee
Favourite genre of music: Hmmmmm
Favourite photographer: Annie Leibowitz
Favourite style of art: Do I have to answer this?
Operating System: OSX
MP3 player of choice: iPod
Favourite cartoon character: Snoopy
Personal Quote: Did I dream this belief, or did I believe this dream?
On October 11, I received a Letter of Censure from the Board of Directors. All I had done was resign from the "church" and the Board: they concocted a HELL of a reason for banning me. Last week I read the letter out loud and OMG I may just post the audio.
Notes: Orren Whiddon is the guy who founded the place
Carrie is the President
Kailin is the other President
Roger is another President (don't ask)
Tubuan are body masks from New Ireland, which is part of Papua New Guinea
Hemlock Hole is the family swimming hole, washed out, needed stairs, I raised the money
Patricia is my good friend who was XO until they resigned her
Mama So is my EDM festival name. It is a name that I cherish
I was on the Board of Directors for 8 years, serving the last two as "church" secretary.
This is my response, which I finally sent late last week:
To the Presidents of the Board of Directors, my Judge, Jury, and Executioners, Four Quarters Interfaith Sanctuary,
I have thought long and hard about how to respond to the Letter of Censure which I received from you. I have considered how I was told to "keep my head down" and be silent. I have considered how I have been prevented from posting even positive statements on the Facebook pages of Four Quarters Interfaith Sanctuary or the Big Dub Fam. I have considered how you conducted your "investigation" and drew your conclusions without ever requesting my presence--and then, only after all was said and done, after you had ruled that I was guilty and had trotted your "dossier" out into the general population, did you request a meeting with me. I have considered how you have threatened to make all the details of your "investigation" public if I went public with my Letter of Censure--when you had already taken your "dossier" and its contents to the Membership. And when I had finished considering all of these things, I realized this:
I have committed egregious crimes against Four Quarters Farm members and members of the "church". I have failed in my duty as a member of the Board of Directors, because I never stood up and said "NO, you can't do that" in a meeting. I am guilty of saying "moo" like one of the cattle I was, dumbly following the guy with the feed bucket, straight to slaughter. I am guilty of working hard to justify the decisions of the Board of Directors even when I wasn't quite so sure of them myself.
I am ashamed.
I am ashamed that I wasted my time and energy and creativity serving this "church". I hope that you remember this whenever you pull out the Tubuan masks, whenever you look in the Ritual Shed for fabric, whenever you look at those steps to Hemlock Hole, or at my articles in back issues of The Wheel of the Year. I never felt like I had to do these things--I wanted to do them, because I loved Four Quarters and wanted to contribute all that I could.
I am ashamed that I promoted Four Quarters at outside events, and that I argued against the widespread perception that "Orren surrounds himself with a Board of Directors of brainwashed sycophants." I am ashamed that I created and gave presentations, that I spoke to hundreds of people, and that I signed people up for the mailing list.
I am ashamed to have served with each and every one of you. I am particularly ashamed that I trusted you, Carrie and Kailin, as you went behind my back, and used my friendship with Patricia to collect intelligence that you could use against us. I am deeply ashamed that I did not ask WHY Kailin was being given the Episcopal Veto. I am ashamed that I called any of you my friends, because now, when your true colors show, including the evident yellow stripes down your backs--I can see the reason why you did not call me before you made your decision. I see you for what you are: cowards who could not look me in the eye and ask me, not "why did you do these things?" but "did you do these things?" .
I am ashamed that I almost always excused Orren Whiddon's outright abusive behavior as "Orren being Orren."
Worst of all, I am ashamed of being Mama So--of helping to brainwash attendees of our Cash Cow (for I see now that is all Big Dub is) into thinking that Four Quarters is a spiritual place. I am ashamed that although I believe the EDM events are a good thing, I tried so very hard to convince the Members to agree with me, often working hard to silence their objections. Orren Whiddon, by your own hand, you have cut off your best ally in this matter.
And you all should be ashamed--ashamed of turning the Membership against each other, of making Four Quarters the setting for an elaborate game of "Spy vs. Spy." You should be ashamed of threatening me--or any of the others whom you have punished, cyber-stalked, falsely accused, falsely represented, censured, and/or banned . You should be ashamed of even considering bringing politics into your narrative. You should be ashamed of pompously citing the "church" Constitution even as you ignored its words--the words some of you wrote and approved--so that you could fast-track my status to "censured and banned." You all should be ashamed for allowing Orren to ignore the law when he, in the course of an illegal eviction, broke into and vandalized my campsite, and then removed my belongings--all prior to my receiving any notice of my status.
All of you should be ashamed of the way you have governed this "church" into not being a true Church. A Church is a sanctuary, a place of peaceful worship and of ministry in all its forms. A "church" is an organization that masquerades as a sanctuary, as a place of peaceful worship--but in the place of ministry there is greed, there is hubris, there is deception. A Church's governing body takes joy in its every member; the governing body of a "church" takes advantage of its every member. It is the governing body of this "church" that has deceived its members into somehow thinking that all of the improvements to the property were made for them, and that has, at Members Meetings, promised to prioritize certain projects in the full knowledge that those priorities would change the moment the members went home. It is the governing body of this "church" that even now, using its "dossier", disseminates lies about its members to its members.
However, and in conclusion, I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to the Board of Directors for helping me to understand how many true friends I have made during my time at Four Quarters. They are the people who matter--and they are the people who will not believe whatever it is you have in your "dossier." Up until now, I thought that I had to come and talk to all of you, so that I could see this "dossier". I thought that I needed to set the record straight and learn the identities of the witnesses against me. I now know that none of those things is necessary, and in this, above all of the other lessons you have taught me in the past two months, you have blessed me beyond measure.
Yours most sincerely,
Sophia Kelly Shultz