For reasons I cannot explain
There’s some part of me wants to see
And I may be obliged to defend
Every love every ending
Or maybe there’s no obligations now,
Maybe I’ve a reason to believe
We all will be received
In Graceland, Graceland, Graceland
I’m going to Graceland.
~ Paul Simon
All who know me well are aware that my music-magic roots are deeply Dionysian (as Joseph Campbell characterized Grateful Dead concerts). But although this is the 40th anniversary of my becoming a Priestess of the Dead, I have also been initiated into the Elvisysian Mysteries. (It was seemingly accidental, but of course, we know there are no accidents in such mystical things).
Thus, as we contemplate the lessons of the Eighth House, I invite you to join me in celebrating this holy and sacred day of the death and transformation of America’s own Horned God.
Elvis Presley was a Sun King in his own right. As my friend Oak, an elder of the Craft and a Most High Priestess of Elvis, has taught us, Elvis personally awoke white, middle-class America’s svadhisthana chakra, and shapeshifted throughout his life from the splendid young Peacock God to the fat, laughing Dagda.
Oak has created a Temple of Elvis that I recommend you visit, to learn more.
She writes, “It is becoming increasingly acknowledged that the Elvis phenomenon can only be categorized as the birth of a religious movement. Elvis’s home, Graceland, is one of the most visited and cherished spots in the country.
“Some visit out of curiosity, but many go as holy pilgrims, to honor and worship the divine spirit of Elvis. Bits of clothes, even single strands of hair (verified by Priscilla) are sold as sacred relics. There have been countless sightings of Elvis after death and many tales abound of miracles attributed to him.
“Unfortunately and inaccurately,” she continues, “most Elvisologists have equated the Elvis religion with Christianity, seeing Elvis as Christ-like figure and Elvis worshippers as similar to early Christians. This is dead wrong. Elvis is clearly a Pagan phenomenon!”
She explains, “In less than fifteen minutes of televised air time, Elvis cracked the wall of 4,000 years of Judeo-Christian uptightness about sex and opened the sex chakra of white America. The day after he gyrated and burlesqued and boogied out ‘Hound Dog’ on national television, he was roundly denounced, his music called ‘the devil’s music.’ ”
Indeed it was!
Do you remember where you were when you heard that our own God of the rowdy pelvis had crossed the veil? Maybe you weren’t even born yet. But it was a moment that we of.. er.. a certain age well recall.
How powerful and seemingly final such moments are!
But thirty four years later, the pilgrimages are bigger than ever. The legends around this resplendent man-God are even more rich and complex. Death changes everything, yes, but it is only one kind of ending, isn’t it?
We Witches know that what is remembered lives. Here is proof.
Thank you. Thank you very much.