How Neo-Pagan Authors Might Handle the Chicken Crossing the Road

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Margot Adler: The recent chicken resurgence, it can be argued, is directly based on a response to the suburban middle class experience. While I found that chickens-who-cross-roads who responded to my survey are of a wide range of ages and backgrounds, I discovered some trends in the "why" of crossing the road. For some it is was freedom. For some it is chickensim. Many chickens told me they crossed the road for intellectual satisfaction. One thing is clear: the growth of road crossing by chickens is expanding in the numbers of chickens and in the ways they cross the road, including at chicken festivals and for political blocking of roads.

P.E.I. Bonewits: Real crossing-the-road, we have seen, is a very interwoven and complicated subject. Our conclusion could be that real crossing-the-road is the build up of chicken emotion in conjunction with chicken concepts to vary the modulation of chicken energy so as to effect the modulation of the road's energy. That's all! Perhaps it is unfortunate, though, to use the word "chicken" in relation to it, since the "C" word is being used now in a way it was never used before in the English language and is an utterly meaningless term without a qualifying adjective. And this, of course, is the fault of the medieval Christian Church, through the Gothic Chickens it invented and used as the basis of persecuting men, women and chickens. The word "chicken" itself comes from an Indo-European root, "cheeka/e" meaning "one who lays eggs," and it has no relation to the later Anglo-Saxon word for "wise spirit of flight," as so often stated by certain contemporary "Chics." An'Chk'Rrhod ("Our Own Chickens on Our Own Roads"), an authentic Neo-Chicken Rooster tradition, offers the best of paleo-, meso- and neo- Chickenism.

Carlos Castenada 4/10/1964: I spent 14 hours, without food or water, sitting on the dirt and under the sun in front of Don Juan's house, grinding chicken feed. I asked Don Juan if I could have a drink of water, and he told me that it was always this way, that a man who wanted to cross the road with the chicken cannot have any food or water till the chicken feed is ground. I asked Don Juan if the chicken is an ally, like the little smoke. Don Juan seemed to get angry and stayed silent. After I completed grinding the corn, I hallucinated from heat exhaustion, and Don Juan said I was ready. As I collapsed to my side, I spilled the chicken feed around me. A chicken appeared to be eating the feed around me, and I became strangely absorbed in the vision. I heard Don Juan's voice tell me, "You must let the chicken cross the road into you. It is very painful, but for a man of knowledge it is easy."

Scott Cunningham: A chicken passes between the grasses, clucking. The wind blows, and the chicken knows, knows, that this is the time. She puts her energy into taking the steps, in harmony with the gravel and the stones of the road. She is across; it is over, and the chicken stands in the field on the other side of the road. Natural chicken crossing is unique among most other branches of the art of chicken road crossing. It doesn't require years of collecting or fashioning coops, feeders or hen houses. Indeed, the most important tools of natural chicken crossing are free: the road, the chicken and you, your personal chicken power. You're already familiar with it. You've felt it. You are a chicken. Crossing the road is you, with your chicken need. And, you can do it on your own. After all, who initiated the first chicken?

Janet and Stewart Farrar: Since so many editions of Gardner's Chicken Book of Crossings have appeared in print (some accurate, some not), we think it won't "lay an egg" too much if we clearly present "The Chicken Crossing Rite," especially if we do so after two and half pages of well researched introduction set in six-point type. In version A of the Chicken Crossing Rite, we find many pseudo-archaisms (e.g.,"Yea, Ye Anciente Rite of Ye Chiks and Ye Rodes is a moste powerful Crafting,taking thy athame..."); however, Doreen Valiente notes (in version C, which is what we present), and we agree, that underlying it all is a basic ritual for summoning the astral road through the spirit of the Chicken (drawn down in the person of the High Priestess, holding the black handled feed bin; of course, a second degree may assist or perform the rite when.

Llewellyn's Practical Chicken Magick Series: To some people, the idea that "chickens crossing the road" is practical comes as a surprise. It shouldn't. The whole idea of Crossing the Road is practical for chickens. While Crossing the Road is also, and properly so, concerned with spiritual growth and psychological transformation --the "why" of crossing the road-- every chicken's life must rest firmly on material roads. Crossing the Road is the flowering of chicken potential. And the profits from publishing all those books on how to do so? Well, that ain't chicken feed.

Starhawk: The chicken crossed the road to reclaim the crossing experience, the experience of being fully alive, with streams and earth and rocks and road, in the fullness of her chickenhood after thousands of years of roosterarchy. The chicken crossing the road --not a chicken laying eggs, not a chicken being roasted and eaten-- a chicken strong and free, crossing the road, this is something I can believe in. We chickens, as chickens, can reclaim this in harmony with the Earth who gives life to all chickens and Who has been terribly scratched by roosters. Exercises: Dance the Spiral Chicken.

Doreen Valiente: Old Chicken really did exist, and she really did cross the road. Gerald talked about her often, but she didn't cross the road till before I began studying with Gerald. Still there are records of Old Chicken which confirm her reality. As for all the comments that Gerald had a "thing" for chickens, that is simply not true. The reason we worked with chickens is really quite simple: it worked!

Silver Raven Wolf: Although many times people have asked me why exactly the chicken crossed the road, I often wonder myself. My point is that every chicken comes to the road in a different way, and there is no one correct way for the chicken to get to the road to be crossed. The study of crossing the road is hard work if the chicken is going to develop any degree of proficiency. It is not something where you can just cluck yourself across the road. The first time my chicken crossed the road was for my chicken's friend, whose rooster was being abusive. The chicken worked the steps for crossing the road after carefully considering all the reasons for crossing the road and all the steps she would have to take. Finally, my chicken just started clucking and flapping her wings and started across the road. When she reached the other side, her friend's rooster was respectful! Afterwards, the chicken ate some corn to ground herself.

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