Quintessence…Realizing the Archaic Future



                        Quintessence…Realizing the Archaic Future.

                  A Radical Elemental Feminist Manifesto

           Mary Daly 1998

           Chapter One

                     The Fifth Spiral Galaxy: Expanding Here


Wild Women are Present to each other across Space and Time. For example, when we choose to hold an Intergalactic Congress on the other side of the moon, Hags of the millennia are Here Now.

On a more mundane plane, we do this all the time. Especially when we deeply hear each other’s words, we magnetize / summon our Foresisters as well as our Present and Future Selves. This great Summoning Summons the “sum total” of our energy/Gynergy, * which ultimately amounts to participation in Be-ing. The sum of our powers manifests itself in a Wild Call echoing across the Etheric Realms, as each woman awakens to the words “I Am!”

Wanderlusting Women are always on the move. Our Voyages Of Exorcism and Ecstasy comprise Moments of participation in Be-ing which carry Journeyers beyond imprisonment in fatherland. These Moments are Acts of Courage. Each Moment leads/leaps to another because it has consequences in the world which impel us to move onward.

Of Exorcism and Ecstasy comprise Moments of participation in Be-ing which carry Journeyers beyond imprisonment in fatherland. These Moments are Acts of Courage. Each Moment leads/leaps to another because it has consequences in the world which impel us to move onward.

The paths formed by our Moments/Movements constitute Spiral Galaxies, which, like the galaxies of the universe, are in perpetual whirling motion. At certain points in this Spinning progression the accumulated Gynergy of New Moments enables Voyagers to take extreme Qualitative Leaps and thus begin new Galaxies. Adventurously hurling ourselves into Galaxy after Galaxy, we Realize Other dimensions. **

In the Fifth Spiral Galaxy —the Realm of Expanding Here/Presence — we encounter the Fifth Cause, the Fifth Element, the Fifth Direction, and the Fifth Dimension. In this Galaxy we Dis-cover QUINTESSENCE,  the Metaphoric Manifestation of Cosmic Integrity, Harmony, and Luminous Splendor in the Unfolding Universe. And we are arriving Here just in Time. For we must dispel the demonic destruction that is being inflicted upon women and nature by the frauds and fiends who rule fatherland.

*The word Gynergy, which was invented by Emily Culpepper, is defined as “the female energy, which both comprehends and creates who we are; that impulse in ourselves that has never been possessed by the patriarchy.” See Wickedary, p.77

**Elsewhere I have described my own experience of arrival in the Fourth Spiral Galaxy, where Voyagers experience Moments of Momentous Re-membering, retracing our earlier Moments as with as pen of light. This coincides with entry into Expanding Now. Our arrival in Expanding Now/Present opens the way for the Great Leap into Expanding Here/Presence. See my philosophical autobiography, Outercourse: The Be-Dazzling Voyage, esp. pp 1-21, and pp 335-339.






The Chinese ritual of footbinding was a thousand –year-long horror show in which women were grotesquely crippled from very early childhood. As Andrea Dworkin so vividly demonstrates, the hideous three inch long “lotus hooks”*—-which in reality were odiferous, useless stumps— were the means by which the Chinese Patriarchs saw to it that their girls and women would not “run around”1 All off the components of the sado-ritual syndrome are illustrated in this atrocity.


First there was the familiar fixation on “purity” in contrast to their counterparts in such countries as India, Chinese males did not have to confine their wives and daughters in purdah in order to protect their “purity”, but saw to it instead that their prisoners were hopelessly crippled. The foot purification (mutilation) ensured that women would be brainwashed as well, since their immobility made them entirely dependant upon males for knowledge of the world outside their houses. Moreover, since torture and mutilation of a small girl was carried out by her mother and other close female relatives, the lesson of ”never trust a woman” was branded upon her soul, and emotional dependency upon the seemingly less involved males was guaranteed. She was not supposed to know that men were the real Master minds of her suffering. Thus her mind was purely possessed, and it became axiomatic that the possessor of tiny feet was a paradigm of female goodness.


The second element of the syndrome—erasure of male responsibility—is evident in footbinding. From the Chinese male’s point of view, there was no question of his blame or moral accountability. After all, women “did it to themselves” One man, cited by Howard S. Levy, described his sister’s ordeal as a child, when she was forced to “walk” with bound feet:

Auntie dragged her hobbling along, to keep the blood circulating. Sister wept throughout, but mother and auntie didn’t pity her in the slightest, saying that if one loved a daughter, one could not love her feet.2

There is a kind of ignorant arrogance in this man’s assertion that the older women (the token torturers) felt no pity. According to his own account, they performed this ritual mutilation out of fear that otherwise the girl would not be marriageable. This was a realistic fear, since for a thousand-year period Chinese males—millions of them—required this maiming of female feet into “lotus hooks’ for their own sadistic, fetishistic, erotic pleasure. One male is quoted by Levy as making the following comment;

Every time I see a girl suffering the pain of footbinding, I think of the future when the lotuses will be placed on my shoulders or held in my palms and my desire overflows and becomes uncontrollable.3

Such male sadism, which dictated the creation of “ golden lotuses,” often masked itself as compassion. Nan-kung Po, a Chinese historical novelist, relates the thoughts of one of his characters upon beholding a courtesan’s  “tiny feet”:

He couldn’t help feeling compassion for her lower extremities. Compressing the feet in order to thicken the thighs must have been the invention of a genius. And of course the inventor must have been a woman.4

Such feelings of “compassion” and “pity”, which were often described by Chinese men as experienced at the sight of ‘tiny feet,” contributed to their sadistic pleasure. It did not occur to them, it seems, that they were the agents behind the mutilation, demanding it, and enforcing it, deceptively using their mindbound women to execute their wishes. This “compassion” was pure doublethink, pure abnegation of responsibility, made plausible by the visibility of women cast into the role of each other’s torturers and mutilators.

Yet another Chinese “genius” who signed himself as “Lotus Knower” blatantly expressed the same self-excusing logic.

Women of antiquity regarded the tiny foot as a crystallization of physical beauty; it was not a product of lewd thinking (emphasis mine). 5

Yet a few lines later he expresses his own lewd thinking:

The lotus has special seductive characteristics and is an instrument for arousing desire. Who can resist the fascination and bewilderment of playing with and holding in his palms a soft and jade-like hook? 6

The examples can be multiplied. No one was guilty except the girls and women who attempted to disobey or escape. No one was to blame for the evil of maiming women, since the reality of evil and maiming was not acknowledged.  There were only “beauty” and the “extremes of pleasure.”

Among the Chinese, footbinding was universally legitimated. Its apologists included philosophers, poets, authors of erotic literature, diplomats, and ordinary,” honorable men.”


Wickedary Definitions by Mary Daly

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Daly Posting from The Wickedary

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The  Wickedary:

Its History/Metamystery



The work of the Wickedary is a process of freeing words from the cages and prisons of patriarchal patterns. Under the rule of snools, words are beaten down, banalized, reduced to serving the sentences of father time. They are made into ladies –in-waiting , wasted and worn in the service of thought stopping grammar.

Websters unwind the bindings of mummified/numbified words. This process involves Hearing/Speaking through Other Time/Space. It implies unwinding the clocks of fathered time, which is tidy time. The Timing of the Wickedary deliberately counters the death march of patriarchal deadtime.

Webster Weave the Wickedary in the Thirteenth Hour. This Time is Moon-measured, Moon-wise, beyond the reach of man-measured doomsday clocks, * the tedious timers and ticking time bombs of clock-ocracy. It is the Time of Crone-logical innovation/creation.

The Wickedary is a declaration that words and women have served the fathers’ sentences long enough. Websters ride the rhythms of Tidal Time, freeing words. Like birds uncaged, these Soundings rush and soar, seeking sister-vibrations. Wickedary words, when Heard, sound the signal that Tidal Time has begun.


The Archaic History of the Wickedary


In a Weird sense, these Wicked Weavings originated some immeasurable Time ago.1 Indeed the Wickedary’s own origins are Archaic. They are whenever/wherever women first began/begin Be-Speaking. The Wickedary’s background is the Background.

Many of the Wickedary’s threads were Originally caught in ordinary patriarchal dictionaries such as the Oxford English Dictionary,  American Heritage Dictionary, and, of course, Webster’s.  This has been possible and continues to be possible because such lexicons themselves contain countless hidden webs. Websters/Wickedarians are familiar with the experience of “chasing through the dictionary” that is, of catching the thread of a word and following it (for example, by checking out synonyms , looking up words contained in the definition, following clues in the eytomolgy, or simply lighting upon another word  on the page, for instance, a Guide Word).  This following and chasing of words is a process of tracing a hidden Web and  then Web of Webs, threading/treading the way/ways through the Labyrinth of words buried in dictionaries.

Websters are aided in the Dis-covering of Webs in dictionaries by the fact that these lexicons still contain “archaic” and “obsolete” words and definitions. Our Web-finding is aided also by the fact that there are deep resonances even in currently used words, which carry in their wake ancestral Memories of hidden Elemental meanings.  Such words—in contrast to mere elementary terms, — can be Deeply Heard by those whose Labyrinthine Sense has been awakened. That is, they can be Heard/ Understood by the Internal Ear of a Wicked Webster— one who actively chooses her own Wildness. They can be seen by a Spinster who choose to Realize her Self and her own kind, that is, to See with Real Eyes .2

Wickedarians believe that one reason we can Dis-cover Webs of Wild Words in the ordinary dictionaries of patriarchy is that these were Archaically woven by Wild Women—by our own kind. Even when denied access to the written word and to the academented fraternities of Bearded Brother No-it-alls, women have always talked, Women have Be-Spoken logically, powerfully, magically, Elementally. The Race of Wild Women has always been a Race of Speakers, Spinners, Weavers, Weird Women have been Great Original Communicators, and with respect to these communications, the role of dictionary editors has essentially been merely to compile. The word compile is in itself an A-mazing clue. Derived from the Latin compilare meaning, “to plunder,” it means” to collect in a volume” and “to compose out of materials from other documents”(Webster’s Collegiate). The dryasdust pedants of patriarchy have plundered and pillaged women’s Word Weavings. They have collected and twisted the Wise Words of Crones in their tedious tomes. They have composed/decomposed documents from materials which are the Documents of Others Lives.3

The Wickedary’s History, then, is interwoven with the History of the Race of Wild Women, and its Webs are comprised of Re-weavings as well as New Weavings of History. Repairing and Dis-covering our own Archaic Webs, Webster’s create Archaic Futures. We Spin into Original Time and, from that perspective, wink at the pomposity of the “sacred” paternal pronouncements that “in the beginning was the word,” Quite simply,” the word” of wasters/erasers of women’s History is a colossal lie.

Webster’s Re-Weaving our own Heritage howl at the” history” of wan twits and windbags. As Gossips we Gossip out (divine and communicate) the secrets of our own History, which have been smoldering among the Embers of the Fires in which Fore-Crones/Fore-Websters were burned alive as Witches. These secrets —hidden by “history”— empower us to Gossip wisdom from the stars.

Wickedarians Dis-covering Webs hidden in dictionaries and Other Sources participate in the creation of Terrible Tapestries and Live in Crone-Time. We Weave in the Presence of Other Gossips, that is, Boon Companions. Crone-logically and Super naturally we Gossip out the true nature of the history of man, encountering and exposing The Mystery of Man.




From a Fat Cranky Feminist



“AMERICAN GYNECOLOGY” from Gyn/Ecology by Mary Daly








(Excerpted from” Gyn/Ecology, The Metaethics Of Radical Feminism” by Mary Daly)


“I have shown in the earlier chapters of this passage how women in various cultures—which are merely multi-manifestations of the overall culture of androcracy—

Have often been lulled/lobotomized by the myths and habits of their particular social context. Drugged by the prevailing local dogmas and disabled physically, they have not always seen the intent behind the vicious circle of maiming and murder of mothers and daughters. In twentieth century America, women are lulled by the myths and rituals of gynecology and therapy, believing that “doctor knows best”. We have entered the Ice Age of Gynocidal Gynecology.



Many feminist have noted the significance of the fact that the massacre of the wise women/healers during the witchcraze was followed by the rise of the man-midwives who eventually became dignified by the name “gynecologist” Gynecology was slow to rise. Man midwives of the 16th 17th 18th and 19th centuries were under fire from women mid-wives, such as Elizabeth Nihell, who described their instruments as “weapons of death”2

Nevertheless, the 19th century witnessed the erection of gynecology over women’s dead bodies.  By 1883 —The year of the death of J.Marion Sims, the “father of gynecology”(known as the “architect of the vagina”)—gynecologists could ”apply their knives at will to the whole range of women’s being reduced, as it were, to sex. “3


As G.J. Barker-Benfield shows, the more notorious mid19th century gynecologists were bent upon reducing women to their sex organs.4 Sexual surgery became The Man’s means of restraining women. J. Marion Sims, known for his hatred and abhorrence of female organs, remedied his problems (becoming very rich in the process) by ruthlessly cutting up women’s bodies. He began his life’s work “humbly”, performing dangerous sexual surgery on black female slaves housed in a small building in his yard. But rapidly moved up the professional ladder, becoming the “moving spirit” behind the founding of the Women’s Hospital in New York, which provided him with bodies for his brutal experimental operations. It also provided him with a theater, in which he performed his operations upon indigent women used as guinea pigs before an audience of men.


In his private practice, where he charged enormous fees to the rich, Sims used the “knowledge” gained through the pain and mutilation inflicted upon the poor patients at the Women’s Hospital. There were plenty of victims for Sims and his ilk, for there were women suffering from fistulae and general bad health who were desperate for any hope of help. The historical evidence suggests strongly that their “helper” Sims did not differ essentially from his gynecological colleagues in intent, attitude, and method. He simply was more monomaniacal and ambitious than most men. Internationally famous, honored by his peers, he was an object of adulation at Harvard Medical School, where the students recognized ‘divinity’ in Sims and counted him ‘one of the immortals. ‘5 As Peggy Holland has remarked, such men are” immortal “in the sense that they pass on death and fear their only true offspring.


*Mary Smith, an Irish indigent, suffered thirty of his operations between 1956 and 1959.

The black slave Anarcha had suffered the same number in his backyard stable a decade before.