Teens are often looking for definition outside the parents, for empowerment on their own terms. Which is why I think that images in popular culture are important when they reference religion and philosophy. The latest permutation can be found with teen superstar Pink (with video director David Meyers) who is following up the cultural watershed that was “Stupid Girls” by getting into Hermeticism as a manifestation of empowerment for girls.
Pink and a Hermetic text.
MTV News reports that in her latest video for the song “U and Ur Hand” Pink is seen gothed up and reading “A Suggestive Inquiry Into Hermetic Mystery” by Mary A. Atwood. Why this book? What does it symbolize in the video?
“Meyers said he chose the book as another way of combating the “stupid girls” image of the first video. “Having her read that occult book was kind of a way to turn everything on its edge,” he said. ‘You always see girls in coffee shops reading something and trying to eye their guy. There’s this place called the Zen Tea Garden in Los Angeles that inspired that setup. I wanted to have her reading some kind of book women aren’t supposed to read, and the fact that it’s written by a woman [makes it more effective].'”
While I doubt teens will be digging into Hermes Trismegistus any time soon, it does send a signal about magic and empowerment. Perhaps Pink’s video can be seen as a call for girl-power to manifest above what they are manifesting below. To put it more simply, maybe “girl power” will start adopting a cosmology that mirrors their material aspirations. Is Pink’s Hermetic power-statement (however superficial it may be) a step down the road to a post-Christian/Pagan future?