It’s been a busy week, and I had honestly hoped to have had more to write here in the last few days. Friday, for example, was to be a day dedicated to writing poetry for Polydeukion and the other Trophimoi, but that didn’t happen for various logistical and practical reasons. I hope to rectify that in the near future, but depending on the results of certain oracular matters, I won’t be able to proceed with my plans unless those come in.
In the meantime, I had a field trip with some of my current college students to the Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America yesterday. Seven were supposed to come; only two were able to, but luckily they brought some family members and friends which swelled our overall numbers to seven total. It was a good experience for everyone, the students (and guests) enjoyed it, and Sensei was in fine form for the purification ceremony. That cold white Shinto kami energy was just as present and effective as it always is, and I had the opportunity to introduce a few people (including two children under the age of ten!) to Sarutahiko-no-Okami, Ame-no-Uzume-no-Mikoto, and Inari, as well as the sacred Pilchuck River.
When it came time for the post-ceremony matters, several people purchased omamori, books, and other things. I was hoping to get a particular book, but they didn’t seem to have it; so instead, I did an omikuji, the Shinto sortilege-based divination system that uses a box of numbered sticks to determine one’s fortune. I got #3, which is of course one of the most “magic” numbers there is in many traditions to which I’m connected–Greek, Egyptian, and Celtic traditions all have strong positive associations with that number. Apparently, even despite the recurrence of threes in Shinto contexts, that was not a very lucky number in this instance. The headline over the fortune write-up was “Not-So-Good Fortune.” The first line of it (I really should have written the whole thing down, but didn’t think to do so) essentially said “Basically you are a good person, but you need more divine help right now; praying would be good.” The further break-down it gives in terms of specific issues was also useful–while this one may not be that relevant, nonetheless it was memorable: “Waiting for person to come: He will not arrive yet.” Okay, so that answers that! (And that could be relevant in at least ten different ways right off the bat, I think…!?!) There was some good further advice that I mentally noted. Then, rather than tie it on the special enclosure outside where people usually tie them, I tied it to a tree branch (which some people still do out there, and which I personally prefer; and which, in any case, isn’t prohibited by the preferences of this Shrine), which would amplify a good fortune if it was good, and would help to reduce a bad fortune if it was bad. So, while it wasn’t a truly “bad” fortune, that it was “not-so-good” just means I have to proceed carefully.
Tomorrow brings the first day of a three-day celebration, and I look forward to reporting further on that then!