About the Blog

Dying for a Diagnosis is an act of devotion. But first, a little background.

In 2007, Del began to experience a wide array of symptoms that his doctors couldn’t explain. There is a litany of tests, surgeries, treatments, diagnoses, referrals, hospital stays, and discoveries that he isn’t going to list. (If you’re really interested, read the blog!) The main symptoms he struggles with are various forms of chronic pain, movement disorder, neurological symptoms including memory loss, and gastrointestinal distress. Right now, the working diagnosis is “Fibromyalgia”, but most of his doctors admit that he doesn’t meet the criteria for it – he just needs some diagnosis to receive pain management treatment and adaptive technology.

Del does not have a “day job”, although he spends a great deal of time doing pastoral care and counseling to those who seek him for such; he teaches classes on spirituality, kink, and the intersection of the two along the East Coast as he is able; he contributes to various books and anthologies on disability, chronic illness, spirituality, spirit work, shamanism, and mental health; and he watches more streaming content than you do.

In 2011, Del’s symptoms got markedly worse. During a series of divinations, he learned that he is undergoing another shamanic transformation (because one is obviously not traumatic enough); except that most death shamans experience death and then come back to life, Del’s death journey is to die slowly, publicly, and to find and share the spirituality inherent to the part of the life cycle that deals with decay and rot, the creation of fertilizer so that new things can grow.

Part of this process included acknowledging Baphomet’s role in his life. Baphomet is, to the best of our knowledge, a Sumerian God/dess (Baphomet, or “Baphy” as we like to call them, is intersexed; that is,  They are both male and female at the same time). One of Their best-known titles is Rex Mundi, or King of the World. Del likes to think of this as being more about being the God/dess of Civilization/Society – although They have some dirt-worshipping aspects to Themself, They aren’t really an Earth God/dess like Demeter or Gerda. For a great book on Baphomet, see Ruth Addams’ devotional and informational book, A Gift of Maggots.

In a private ceremony at a spiritual kink event that had several parts of it dedicated to Baphomet, Del made a personal offering to Baphomet to enlist Their help with the upcoming struggles involved in this death journey. They accepted the offering, and asked…well, asked is a nice way of putting it…Del to create Dying for a Diagnosis. Well, more specifically, Baphomet wanted Del to write publicly about his struggles with physical and mental health and how those struggles can be inherently spiritual, as well as the spiritual insights that come from them.

The not-so-funny part is that Del hates talking about his medical stuff in public. Often, people with no medical training will offer “helpful” suggestions – diagnoses, alternative medicine, doctors, treatments – that have either already been tried/explored/ruled out, or are only based on partial knowledge of the situation, or are the “hot alternative treatment/diagnosis of the month”.

Del does not want, is not inviting, and will delete any comments that suggest diagnoses, alternative or alleopathic treatments, or any sort of medical advice, unless you have substantial training in that field. Repeat offenders of this will be banned. So if you’re an acupuncturist, feel free to comment about how acupuncture might be helpful, although it might be useful to know if he’s already tried acupuncture (he has) and whether it worked for him or not (it didn’t). It would also be useful if you read all of the posts in the Medical category, so you at least have some idea as to what’s going on and what’s already been tried.

So welcome. Del hopes something here touches you in a good and healthy way; at least, Del hopes you find respite and comfort here.

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3 Comments

  1. Valiel Elentári said,

    Madness and dying ? Seems like the right place to come… strange coincidence.

  2. Jay said,

    Hi, I respectfully submit another perspective, that the organism is constantly in a state of death and renewal – shedding old cells and imbued with new life.
    Not just a seamless ongoing interchange of life and death, but death as a daily basis also:

    Death, a regular occurence.
    Often at night, sometimes by day.
    Organism wearies.
    Cools.
    Breathing slows.
    Heartbeat retards.
    Body stills, corpse-like.
    Thought disengaged.
    A deep, dreamless sleep occurs.
    For an indeterminate time.
    Then, a miracle.
    As a baby, the limbs start to move.
    So to the head.
    Body infuses with life.
    Eyes open.
    New life. Reborn.
    Again.

    Kindest wishes, Jay.

  3. blacksun321 said,

    Can totally relate to “he learned that he is undergoing another shamanic transformation (because one is obviously not traumatic enough)”. I’ve had a lot of similar experiences myself. And I think “Del’s death journey is to die slowly, publicly, and to find and share the spirituality inherent to the part of the life cycle that deals with decay and rot, the creation of fertilizer so that new things can grow” is a beautiful and inspiring way of looking at the situation and trying to find the learning process in life’s challenges, something I try to do as well and if I may say so you are in my humble opinion setting a fine example in that regard. Good luck on your journey.

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