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I’m Morpheus. I'm an artist, ritual tattooist & writer. My spiritual practice is Celtic polytheist centered on the Morrígan & a retinue of Irish and Gallic gods and spirits. I’m the author of The Book of the Great Queen, and I serve as a dedicant priest with the Coru Cathubodua Priesthood. I am also a witch and student of folk magic and sorcery. Links to website etc in my bio.

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In a line with the kind of work I'm doing in my general research, which I engage most deeply in my dissertation— which I talking more about below— here's a start at something I've been thinking about lately:

Alison Kafer (https://iupress.org/9780253009340/feminist-queer-crip/), Joshua Earle (https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=Jd_s4EsAAAAJ&hl=en), Jillian Weise (https://www.google.com/search?q=%22jillian+weise%22+%22cyborg%22) , Ashley Shew (https://scholar.google.com/citations?hl=en&user=98S5m5kAAAAJ), and others (myself included; see below) have talked a lot about how the cultural imaginary of "the cyborg" should never have been disconnected from the history of disability and how while Haraway's work did a lot of very important things, it still could have benefited from a more careful engagement with the real live people today who live entangled lives with technology. As I've often said, the foundational myth of the cyborg is a story about space disabling us all, and one about the process of adaptation to an environment which fundamentally wants to do us harm, and we've talked about the fact that the stories we use to orient ourselves future pick up this thread, as well.

Some have talked about the idea of reading the history of Disability and Technology as stretching back to even the mythcycle of Hephaestus, the artificer of the Greek Gods who was, himself, an amputee, either causing or as a result of his being cast from Olympus, as it is variously told. Hephaestus' birth was the result of an asexual reproductive revenge plot by Hera; Zeus then birthed Athena from his own head after a tryst with Okeanos in retaliation. Two children born of the same fight being the gods of artistry, craft, craftiness, and technological knowledge is interesting in and of itself, but that's another conversation. This one is about how in some versions of Hephaestus' story, he was kicked out of Olympus by Zeus for trying to free her after Zeus locked her up after she tried to kill Herakles, and this casting down caused him to become injured to the point of needing to amputate his hand and boot. But in other tellings, he was cast out ***because*** his hand and foot were injured.

That is, in many versions of the story, Hephaestus was kicked out of heaven ***Because He Was Disabled***.

And then, after that— when he had learned secrets of magic and honed his artificer's knowledge and created a whole new area of skill and technology— ***then*** he was found favourable in the gods' sight and brought back in to design them weapons and armour and tools and fancy toys. When the disabled god was found to have special knowledge— was found to have developed special knowledge so that he could adapt to a world that actively hated and punished him for being disabled— and when that special knowledge was considered useful to the other gods, ***then*** he was allowed to come back around. And it is notable that in some versions of the Hephaestus mythcycle, his response to this realization is a giant "Fuck You" and a determination to stay in his workshop forge; y'know, the place that he would have set up and adjusted exactly how he wanted and needed it in order to do the work that he loved.

Tables the right height, benches the right length, tools in exactly the proper relational arrangement to be optimally useful to his needs? Yeah. And let's not forget, helpers he designed specifically to facilitate and complete the work.

I've talked about the Greek myth of Hephaestus and his automata as one of the foundational stories of "artificial intelligence" and "robotics," before; I bring it up in some talks and I've written about it a little online, to show that the history of "AI" has always been bound up in our myths and magic and our fuzzy-bordered ideas of creating minds that we then treat as servants. But something that hit me this week, and which you can probably see coming now, in light of the above, is that the story of Hephaestus clearly demonstrates that the historical and foundational myths of "AI" have their roots in disability and assistive technology.

The automata were all crafted either as gifts for gods or royalty, or explicitly as helpers for Hephaestus himself, and were said to feel human emotions. This being the case, there's something of an important tension in thinking through both the liberatory and oppressive aspects of what the automata were and were for, in terms of both facilitating Hephaestus' adaptation and accessibility, but also being rendered as enslaved minds within a slaveholding culture.

Again: The founding stories we have told ourselves about automated systems and created nonhuman minds are entangled stories about treating minds as mere tools, and of disabled and otherwise marginalized people's lived experiential knowledge being devalued until it's useful to non-disabled, privileged people. So if it's surprising that we should find those confused and disappointing threads in our contemporary discussions on the topic of "artificial intelligence," then it is only so because at over 2800 years later, you'd think we'd've had time to learn better.

(this is a segment from my newsletter, and if you want to read more of it, it's here: https://tinyletter.com/Technoccult/letters/technoccult-news-the-days-of-swine-and-roses)

Wanted to attempt a medieval illuminated manuscript style mari lwyd. Its really difficult to work out how to do the style right!

<taps the mic>
Is this thing on?
<loud screeching noise>
<flock of crows flying to the skies>
Oh, no wait here we go. Apologies for the screeching, they tend to follow us around. Hi everybody, we've joined the party and this seems like a good place to land. Nice to be here.

Fascinating:
“It's long been believed that ancient Egyptians used mummification as a way to preserve a body after death. However, an upcoming museum exhibition indicates that was never the case, and instead the elaborate burial technique was actually a way to guide the deceased toward divinity.”

livescience.com/ancient-egypti

Hello lovely people of mastodon.art, I am looking to commission a #nonbinary artist for a portrait of someone close to me. @Curator asked me to post the question for reach. Feel free to DM me with leads. TIA.

#introduction
Hello! I'm Sygnin (they/them). I'm an illustrator & I draw my comic, Nowhere. Interested in freelance gigs (pls email sygnin[at]gmail[.]com)

💜Portfolio http://sygnin.com/
💜Comic http://nowherecomic.com/
💜Social & other links http://sygnin.carrd.co

#illustration #MastoArt

SOME EPIGRAPHIC COMPARANDA BEARING ON THE ‘PAN-CELTIC GOD’ #LUGUS

"Every human being in using language is ‘pillaging an antiquity of which he does not fully possess the secret’. In their changing forms and meanings, the words used today had formerly been arranged to express innumerable now-lost ideas. For the Celtic languages and Celtic-speaking societies a transformative discontinuity coincided with the Conversion, end of the Western Empire, and Migration Period."

https://www.academia.edu/44897072/_Some_epigraphic_comparanda_bearing_on_the_pan_Celtic_god_Lugus_

“Most of us, no matter what we say, are walking in the dark, whistling in the dark. Nobody knows what is going to happen to him from one moment to the next, or how one will bear it. This is irreducible. And it's true of everybody. Now, it is true that the nature of society is to create, among its citizens, an illusion of safety; but it is also absolutely true that the safety is always necessarily an illusion. Artists are here to disturb the peace.”
― James Baldwin

This website “Dúchas” is one of the most fantastic, free resources that we have in Ireland. It collects folklore and it's all there to read https://t.co/L95IR1suuY

May the roads of the dead
Flatten for them,
Their airs warm,
The mountains cease their tumult,
To ease the journey of the sorrowful,
Our siblings.
May they be washed clean
Of ill-gotten names,
Of ill-fitting bodies,
Of injustice.
Mother Mictecacihuatl embrace them,
Father Mictlantecuhtli protect them,
Soothe your troubled children
And may they have rest
From all despair.
When they return to the Earth
May they be born in armor,
Swords in hand,
To fight with us, the living.
🕯️

#TDOR #trans

Thinking about what my next witchy incense blend should be crafted for. What would y’all like to see? Another devotional blend for one of the gods, or perhaps a new magical recipe?

Trying to relearn a new social media is so?? Anyway hello everyone, I’m Amy Louise! I draw and paint and I’m currently consumed with never ending Irish mythology fixation.

My most popular project to date has been my Irish Mythology Tarot Set, but I also draw and paint lots of things (including comics), and I’m working on upcoming project with O’Brien Press, to be published in Spring 2024.

#art #illustration #irishmythology #comics

I have seen a few people touting #AncientApocalypse today, please don't. It is absolute nonsense!

It is made by a total grifter who should never have been given a soapbox. It's in the same rubbish category as #AncientAliens -- pure and utter rubbish.

It is an insult to all the amazing #archeologists out there and all the amazing work they do with #historians

Graham Hancock is an absolute scammer!

Shameless podcast plug (but there are witches!) 

Hey, I'm a historian with a podcast on the history of magic & witchcraft! Interested? Check out
https://enchantedpodcast.net or look for Enchanted: The History of Magic & Witchcraft anywhere you listen to podcasts.

“I demurred; much of our mythology and lore was indeed preserved in illuminated manuscripts written in Irish monasteries in the Middle Ages. “Maybe,” she said, “but is the female lore there? And what about the herbal lore? And the knowledge of magic?”

I admitted very little of this type of material had survived. But Lewis Cardinal interrupted with a challenge. ‘How would you know?’ he said. I said I was familiar with the contents of many of the major manuscripts, and that the type of knowledge Jo-Ann was referring to simply wasn’t there. He gave a knowing smile and nodded to Jerry, who explained that in old cultures such knowledge would generally not have been revealed to the uninitiated. The information would have been shared only with those who it was deemed deserved to know it, and they would have preserved it among themselves.”

irishtimes.com/culture/2022/11

Re-reading @thorncoyle's "Witches of Portland" series and it still draws me in like the first time.

If you like paranormal stories, witches who fight for social justice, and multifaceted characters, you might like this series.

https://www.thorncoyle.com/series/the-witches-of-portland

#amReading

Been seeing this “signs you’ve done your shadow work” listicle making the rounds on here. It includes not being “easily triggered” as a sign of, I guess, being more successfully developed as a person or something.

I would like to, from the bottom of my heart, ask people to please become trauma informed, especially if you are positioning yourself as any kind of teacher, advocate, organizer, or spiritual authority.

Emotional triggers are a psychological mechanism relating to trauma. 1/

I went hiking in the Ozarks on Saturday morning and stumbled on a small patch of frost flowers!

This is the first time I've seen them, and I was surprised to see them this late in the year. Frost flowers typically form during the first few hard freezes of fall when sap in certain small plants freezes, rupturing the stem and forcing water out. The water freezes on contact with the air and builds up into distinctive flower-shaped petals!

#Photography #Arkansas #Weather #MacroPhotography #arwx

Have you heard of #Netflix's new series #AncientApocalypse and the outrage from the #archaeology community?

This week, on The Familiar Strange, I take on the pseudoscience of #Atlantis conspiracy theories by investigating their origins in Victorian race theories. Check it out⬇️

https://thefamiliarstrange.com/2022/11/21/victorian-pseudoscience/

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