Thursday, November 16, 2006

TAARNA The Tarakian and I.

Well, today's mail brought me the DVD copy of Heavy Metal, a movie that once seen has stayed with me for one main reason.

Many claim that Heavy Metal is very negative, even misogynistic in tone. While many of the early sequences paint women in a less than ideal or favorable light the last sequence of the film, when we meet Taarna, we find redemption and a very positive light painted with a heavy brush.

Taarna is a Tarakian, the LAST of her line, her "breed" and a warrior. She's called upon to Avenge the death of a people, the end of an age, to fulfill a promise, a pact made long before she was born. She takes up her her sword, and the 'armor' of her birthright and sets out to answer her call.

What can one woman do? What indeed!

Taarna is captured, tortured, abused and left for dead. She goes on to fight the leader of the Mutants, and then, to face certain death in the ultimate battle against evil. Her wounds, from torture and her battle with the mutant leader can not be pleasant or painfree. Her will however tired and wounded her body, is not broken, her duty no less clear, and she fights against all this, and of course certain death to do what is right, and close the lid on the box so to speak. From her death, she is reborn, a new defender takes up the mantle of defense against evil to protect the next generation.

I'm not Taara, and while I don't really want to die defending time and space against evil, given the same situation I cannot say I'd do things any differently.

I've been beaten, abused, violated and more. I've had my birthright stripped from me, my very soul torn and tortured to conform to someone else's vision of the universe and yet I've survived. I fought the hard battles with myself, and the world and its peoples, and while I wouldn't say I am victorious, I will say I'm still here.

Adam Smith in his writings on the Legend of Taarna (also writes in part;

"But in this age of darkness and nihilism, I believe virtue and beauty should be credited wherever found, even in the most unusual places. In St. Paul’s words, “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8. I find this a fitting description for Taarna, and I hope that you will find her story edifying, uplifting, and a source of inspiration as I did 24 years ago, and still do today."

And I'd have to say I agree. From the first time I saw Heavy Metal until now, I was captivated by Taarna. Now, all these years later, I remain so. All these years later I'm reminded of my own struggles with Domestic Violence, Mental illness, and Gender. While my life is far from perfect, and I've been through the fires of hell more times than I wish to count or think about, I am reborn.

My heart, soul, spirit and birthright are all once again mine. NO longer will I sit quietly by and have my life force, my spirit stripped from me. Never again will I be accept being told, NO, YOU cannot possibly be, are not allow to exist. I will fight for my heart, my soul, my right to express myself and live my life HONESTLY.

I may not be an actual Tarakian, but I get it, I understand and have stood against adversity and pain to protect my spirit, my heart, my beauty. I have sacrificed everything, including life as I once knew it, once held it to be, to fight for truth and beauty. I am not the person I was as recently as five years ago, and while that person is missed, and the value and beauty in the sacrifice made not forgotten, I am not the same.

I feel a kinship not with an animated character in a movie, but who and what she represents. I am reborn, I am ME, I am, the last of my line, and I am a new Tarakian . . .

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