42. Goddesses and Stuff.
The Bish’s place is three stops further up the Northern line, in Finchley ... another of my old stamping grounds. Jay and I lived there for six months before we set off for Montana;my friend Bernadette and I shared a house there when Jay and I broke up and Lion and I lived in a house there for a year when we first got together.
I was planning to do a little bit of ghost-laying as I did in Dartmouth Park but there isn’t a minute this week to do any of it – which is interesting in itself. Maybe none of those ghosts need any attention? It’s obviously more important to be in the Bish’s place, chatting, attending meetings and services, watching movies together (I adored the Johnny Depp Lone Ranger no matter what the critics think) or being out seeing friends or having the treatment.
BTW if you're reading Bishop's Palace rather than place, I'd probably better correct you. It's a flat on the second floor of a house.
The first thing that happens is that the A-lister (who keeps signing his texts with a capital Q by accident – it’s a letter near to his name) has to postpone Tuesday at the Savoy. To say he had a better offer is an understatement but the good thing is he’s eager to reschedule for Friday morning which is something to look forward to.
So I have a free morning. Do I use it for ghost-laying? Yes indeed but not in Finchley. I head off for a Date With God.
A Date with God is when you let God take you out and decide for you where you are going and what you are going to do (for more details of those are, see here). God makes it pretty clear pretty fast that we are going to the British Museum to see Sekhmet.
As Goddesses go, Sekhmet is pretty darn ferocious. She brings destruction to the enemies of Ra and frankly doesn’t know where to stop. But she has both fascinated and scared me since I was fifteen and came to the museum on a school trip.
Now I’m an ordained independent Catholic priest I, technically, shouldn’t have much truck with Egyptian goddesses but that's the joy of the independent movement. I wouldn't call it interfaith but I'd certainly call it inter-respect. This particular goddess has turned up quite a few times in my life and this time, God is pretty insistent.
So I turn up in the Egyptian statues part of the museum in front of four statues of the lion-headed goddess, sit down on the convenient bench in front of them and wait to see what needs to be known.
In Kabbalistic terms, Sekhmet is Gevurah – the equivalent of the archangel Khamael – the sword of God. She is judgment, surgery, knives and sharp things. You don’t mess with this lady if you want to keep the contents of your skin inside.
She turned up last time I visited the Dartmoor Shaman so I’m not entirely surprised that we’ve come to visit and it’s very clear that I do need more of her energy ... and a razor’s edge of wit if I am to be a successful comedian – a Fool for God as the Bish calls it.
I’m not tough. Oh, I have a pretty fierce persona at times and yes I can stand up on a stage and risk humiliation but there are still aspects of my psyche that are very doormat. Sekhment is servant of Ra (the great God). She defends him against his enemies. I serve at the pleasure of the Holy One (to paraphrase The West Wing) and, in comedy, where there is so much hostility against God and religion, I am Sekhmet. I just have to let her in.