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The Spider’s Song: I Made an Offering of Wind…

I made an offering of wind upon the altar of dust.  ~Grimr

In the beginning was a song.  The song.  The only song there ever was, and ever will be.  It was a love song, and a song of loneliness.  It was a song of joy and sorrow, of love and loss, of peace and war, of life and death.  It was the song of creation, the song of all things.  It was the spider’s song.

It began with one note, ringing out through the outer darkness, like a single bell rang in a place of silence, or a the first harp string plucked.  It was a pure note, perfect, the only note that could pierce that silence, the silence of the outer dark.  It was the voice of the Nagara, the single note that was all, the love song of the Nagara to the Nagara, deep calling out to deep.  And it hung there in the darkness like a spark of light, like a seed, like a single harp string, or a single thread.  It was the first thread of the web, a single thread in the abyss of the outer darkness, a note ringing for none to hear.

And it echoed.  That single note reflected back on itself, reflecting off that which is not, the dark curve of the darkness.  It echoed back and in doing so, it changed, not the same as it was going out.  It rang in harmony with itself, a perfect harmonic, a perfect fifth.  The danced, round and round, catalyst and nexus, nexus and catalyst.  And so, one note became two, one thread became two, both vibrating in the darkness of the abyss, in the outer darkness, the first two threads of the web.  Two notes, hearing each other, responding to each other, first in dissonance, then in consonance, the dance of the twins.

From their play a third note arose.  It vibrated between them, both notes moving the third, the perfect third, a chord in the silence of the dark.  Three notes ringing out, moving, shifting.  A perfect chord.  Three mothers, three weavers each moving each other.  Three threads hanging in the abyss, the first three threads of the web.

But the song wasn’t finished.  The chord grew and the perfect seventh came forth, four notes, four threads, stretching out into the abyss in four directions, four winds.  And still the song grew, for where there’s a first, a third, a fifth, a seventh, there, too, there’s a second, a fourth, and a sixth.  Seven notes ringing out through the darkness, and a melody formed, the vibrations of the web.  Seven builders, seven keepers, seven guardians.

Breath.  What is breath?  Breath is life, for even many one celled life take in oxygen and need it to live.  Breath is wind, for it is the movement of gas, in or out.  There is no breath in a vacuum.

Breath.  What is breath?  Breath is the most basic of sounds.  From it comes the vowel sounds in all oral languages, the sounds made without obstruction, without build up.  Sound passing through only changed in sound by the narrowness or movement of the side it passes between.  It is outward moving air, unblocked, unfettered, unbound, loosed.

Breath, vowels, are the first notes of music, pure sound, untempered.  They are the notes of the sound of the music, of a song, the song, the first song.  They are the beginning.

Breath bound, tied, constrained, blocked, fettered, becomes consonants.  As the vowels are given form, as the tent pole is raised, the bound vowels becomes first Three Mothers, then Seven Doubles, then Twelve Singles.  22 consonants, 22 letter.  Two Dancers, Three Weavers, Seven Builders, twelve in all, twelve notes, twelve threads, Twelve Watchers.

And consonants gather around vowels, the bound around the loosed, and words form.  Words, symbols of ideas.  And the complexity grows, the song grows.  Three Mothers, Seven Doubles, Twelve Singles, 22 consonants, 29 sounds, become 231 Gates, each gate a pair of consonants, the first and the fifth.  And the 231 Gates are joined by others, 20 consonants added to the beginning, to the middle, to the end, 13,860 roots if none repeat.  And roots combine to be words, and words combine to form sentences, and sentences combine to form paragraphs, and paragraphs combine to form chapters, and chapters combine to form books, and books combine to form sets and series, and sets and series combine to form shelves, and shelves combine to form racks, and racks combine to form rows, and rows combine to form stacks, and stacks combine to form floors, that the whole world is a library, the 10,000 things.

Every note holds power.  Every breath holds power.  Every vowel holds power.  Every sound holds power.  Every consonant holds power.  Every word holds power, every sentence, every paragraph.  And the longer they exist, the more they are used, the more their power grows.

Stand in a used bookstore or library.  Look at all those books.  How many are there?  How many words do they contain? How many letters do those words contain?  Each sound is a note in the song, the song of creation.  Each sound is a vibration in the web that is all, stretched across the face of the deep, the abyss, the outer darkness.  How much power is in those pages?  What secrets?  What notes?

Now think of the world.  How many books are in the world?  Right now.  And how many words in each one?

Now think of all time.  How many books have there been?  How many will there be?  And how many words in each one?

Now realize that books are just the ideas, the thoughts, the words that have been written down.  They are written language.  They have meaning because of the oral language that spawned them, the consonants with bound flow, the vowels with looses flow.  The power is in that oral language, the written is only that small piece that was written down, loosed power bound into a page.  How many words are spoken that are never recorded?  Each is a note in the song, the song of creation, the spider’s song.

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.  Now the earth was unformed and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God hovered over the face of the waters.  And God said: ‘Let there be light.’ And there was light.” ~Genesis 1:1-3 JPS 1917 Edition of the Hebrew Bible in English

“darkness was upon the face of the deep” – וּ וְחֹשֶׁךְ עַל-פְּנֵי תְהוֹם – v choshek ‘al-peniy tehowm

וּ – v – and

וְחֹשֶׁךְ – choshek – darkness, obscurity, secret place

עַל-פְּנֵי – ‘al-peniy – the face, the presence, the person, the surface of, that which is in front of, before, toward

תְהוֹם – tehowm – deep, depths, deep places, abyss, sea, ocean, abyss, grave

“spirit of God” – וְרוּחַ אֱלֹהִים – Ruwach ‘elohiym – Ruach Elohim

רוּחַ – Ruwach, Ruach – breath, wind, air, gas, spirit, vivacity, vigour, courage, temper, anger, desire, sorrow, will, energy of life

אֱלֹהִים – ‘elohiym, Elohim – rulers, judges, divine ones, angels, gods, god, goddess, godlike one, G-d

“hovered over the face of the waters” – מְרַחֶפֶת עַל-פְּנֵי הַמָּיִם – mrachaphit ‘al-peniy mayim

מְ – m – from

רַחֶפֶת – rachaphit – to grow soft, relax, to hover

עַל-פְּנֵי – ‘al-peniy – the face, the presense, the person, the surface of, that which is in front of, before, toward

הַמָּיִם – mayim – water, waters, urine, springs, fountains, flood

So we could read is as:

“and the secret place was upon the surface of the ocean, and the breath of the rulers settled upon the surface of the water.”

or:

“and that which hides the face of the abyss, the wind of the gods, from the face of the water.”

or:

“and darkness was the presence of the grave, the temper of the gods toward the flood.”

But, a bit of a tangent.

Ruach is breath, but also wind and life.  Ruach is also, in Kabbalah, part of the soul.  In this way, it is the emotions, will, and energy of life.

The Breath.  The Soul.  The Wind.  Life.  Ruach, hovering above the waters of the abyss, in the darkness, is the notes of the song, which are also the threads of the web.

In the beginning was a song.
The song.
The only song there ever was, and ever will be.
It was a love song, and a song of loneliness.
It was a song of joy and sorrow, of love and loss, of peace and war, of life and death.
It was the song of creation, the song of all things.
It was the spider’s song.

I made an offering of wind upon the altar of dust.

FFF,
~Muninn’s Kiss

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Posted by on May 5, 2013 in muninnskiss

 

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Ever After: The Pursuit of Passion

Since it came out, one of my favourite movies has been Ever After.  I’m sure most people have seen it, and it is old news now, but I sit here watching it again, and as always it captivates me, insides me, and leaves me thinking.

For any who are not familiar with the film, it is a retelling of Cinderella staring Drew Barrymore set in France in the time of Leonardo da Vinci.  Henry (Dougray Scott), the prince of France is engaged to marry the princess of Spain in an arranged marriage.  He feels trapped by this marriage and by the responsibilities of his birth and his future home.  Danielle (Drew Barrymore) is the Cinderella figure.  Her father was a merchant who married a baroness and died jet after, leaving his manor, and Danielle, to his new wife, who had two daughter.  The Baroness raises Danielle as a servant.  She has several encounters with the prince, who believes her to a Comtesse, because of the name she gives.  It’s a beautiful love story and I’m a hopeless romantic, so I of course loved it.

But it’s not the love story I want to talk about, but Passion.  There is a lesson to be learner from the film for all of us, as most of us live our lives as the prince had previous to meeting Danielle.  This is summarized in Henry’s speech to Danielle in the library of the Franciscans:

“In all my years of study, not one tutor has ever demonstrated the passion you have shown me in the last two days.  You have more conviction in one memory than I have in my entire being.”

And also in his discussion with Da Vinci at the beginning of the movie:

Henry:  “I know.  I lied.  I thought I’d see the world before I gave up my life for God and country.”
Da Vinci:  “Why on earth did you stop?”
Henry:  “I suppose I lack conviction.  You seem to have it in spades.  Besides, you said it was a matter of life and death.”
Da Vinci:  “A woman always is, Sire.”  (unrolling the Mona Lisa)
Henry:  “She laughs at me, sir, as if she knows something I do not.”
Da Vinci:  “The lady had many secrets.  I merely painted one of them.”

Prince Henry had grown up having everything.  The best tutors, access to libraries most couldn’t dream of, he had never gone hungry, never had to do hard labour, never known loss, never suffered the way “lesser” people did.  He had never lacked anything.  Except Passion.

Danielle, on the other hand, though living a sheltered early life, experiences loss when her father dies.  From then on, though she always has enough to eat, she is treated like a servant and spends her life working and labouring.  She spent the rest of her life after his death without certainty, with no position, no access to any of the advantages the prince had.  But what she did have was Passion.  She was naive and idealistic to a point that she was bound to be disappointed by life, but she had a Passion that was a raging fire inside her.

Danielle’s Passion and Henry’s Apathy are shown in their confrontation the second time they met.  Danielle dressed up as a courtier and went with 20 pieces of gold to redeem one of the servants.  The Baroness had given him to the Crown for a debt of 20 pieces of gold.  She tried to make the driver of the cart hauling the poor debtors to the coast to serve in the new world to release him, and he was getting angry with her because she was delaying him.  The prince arrives and steps it.

Cargo Master: Get out of my way!
Prince Henry: You dare raise your voice to a lady, sir?
Cargo Master: Your Highness. Forgive me, Sire. I meant no disrespect. It’s just er… I’m following orders. It’s my job to take these thieves to the coast.
Danielle: A servant is not a thief, your Highness; and those who are cannot help themselves.
Prince Henry: Really? Well, then. By all means. Enlighten us.
Danielle: If you suffer your people to be ill-educated and their manners corrupted from infancy then punish them for those crimes to which their first education disposed them what else is to be concluded, Sire but that you first make thieves and then punish them?
Prince Henry: Well, there you have it. Release him.
Cargo Master: But, Sire…
Prince Henry: I said release him!
Cargo Master: Yes, Sire.
Maurice: I thought I was looking at your mother.
Danielle: Meet me at the bridge. Prepare the horses! We will leave at once! Thank you, Your Highness.
Prince Henry: Have we met?
Danielle: I do not believe so, Your Highness.
Prince Henry: I could have sworn I knew every courtier in the province.
Danielle: Well… I’m visiting a cousin.
Prince Henry: Who?
Danielle: My cousin.
Prince Henry: Yes, you said that. Which one?
Danielle: The only one I have, Sire.
Prince Henry: Are you coy on purpose or do you honestly refuse to tell me your name?
Danielle: No! And yes.
Prince Henry: Then, pray, tell me your cousin’s name so I might call upon her to learn who you are. Anyone who can quote Thomas Moore is well worth the effort.
Danielle: The Prince has read Utopia?
Prince Henry: I found it sentimental and dull. I confess, the plight of the everyday rustic bores me.
Danielle: I gather you do not converse with many peasants.
Prince Henry: (chuckles) Certainly not, no! Naturally.
Danielle: Excuse me, Sire, but there is nothing natural about it. A country’s character is defined by its everyday rustics, as you call them. They are the legs you stand on. That position demands respect, not…
Prince Henry: Am I to understand that you find me arrogant?
Danielle: Well, you gave one man back his life but did you even glance at the others?
Prince Henry: Please, I beg of you a name. Any name.
Danielle: I fear that the only name to leave you with is Comtesse Nicole de Lancret.
Prince Henry: There now. That wasn’t so hard.

It’s clash of cultures and classes, but ultimately, it shows her Passion and his inability to understand that Passion.  It was foreign to him, beyond his understanding, like explaining flying to a deep sea fish, or the sea to a high mountain bird.  But that incomprehensible, that bafflement, is what fascinates Henry about Danielle.

He runs across her again at the river when he was accompanying Da Vinci to test a new invention and she was there swimming.

Prince Henry: You’re angry with me.
Danielle: No.
Prince Henry: Admit it.
Danielle: Well, yes, if you must know.
Prince Henry: Why?
Danielle: Because you are trying to bait me with your snobbery. Prince Henry: I’m afraid, mademoiselle, you are a walking contradiction and I find that rather fascinating.
Danielle: Me?
Prince Henry: Yes, you. You spout the ideals of a Utopian society, yet you live the life of a courtier.
Danielle: You own all the land there is, yet you take no pride in working it. Is that not also a contradiction?
Prince Henry: First I’m arrogant, and now I have no pride. However do I manage that?
Danielle: You have everything and still the world holds no joy. Yet you make fun of those who would see it for its possibilities.
Prince Henry: How do you do it?
Danielle: What?
Prince Henry: Live each day with this kind of passion? Don’t you find it exhausting?
Danielle: Only when I’m around you. Why do you like to irritate me so?
Prince Henry: Why do you rise to the occasion?

He sees the Passion in her and wants that.  He sees dynamic life in her, where his is static.  He seeks her out again the next day and takes her to the Franciscan library.  This is where the first quote I gave occurred.  By this point, his consternation has faded and awe has replaced it.  It is no long her foreignness where he focuses, but his lack of Passion and conviction.  This side was obvious to the audience in the previous encounters, but he noticed the Passion in her more than the lack in himself.  As he becomes familiar and comfortable in hers, it no longer eclipses the lack in him, and he desires what she has, where previously he desired the presence of hers.  Passion is contagious.  He is catching it, and it is beginning to light a fire in him.

The next morning, he storms into his parents’ bedroom, the fire of Passion now fully upon him:

King Francis: Off… with his head.
Queen Marie: Francis, wake up. Our son has something to tell us.
Prince Henry: Mother, Father. I want to build a university with the largest library in Europe, where people of any station can study.
King Francis: All right, who are you and what have you done with our son?
Prince Henry: Oh. And I want to invite the Gypsies to the ball.

Henry has now found a purpose, as he tells Danielle when he meets her at the ruins later that day:

Prince Henry: Hello.
Danielle: Hello.
Prince Henry: Are you well?
Danielle: I fear that I am not myself today.
Prince Henry: I feel as if my skin is the only thing keeping me from going everywhere at once. There is something I must tell you.
Danielle: And I you.
Prince Henry: Oh, here. Your book, you left it in the carriage yesterday. Danielle: Your Highness…
Prince Henry: Henry.
Danielle: I cannot stay long, but I had to see you. There is much to say.
Prince Henry: Come. I want to show you something. I used to play here as a boy. It was my father’s most cherished retreat before the war.
Danielle: It’s beautiful.
Prince Henry: I’ve measured my life by these trees starting here all the way up there. And still they grow. So much life to live but I no longer imagine it alone.
Danielle: You’re not making this easy.
Prince Henry: I have not slept for fear I would wake to find all this a dream. Oh, last night, I had a revelation. I used to think, if I cared at all, I would have to care about everything and I’d go stark raving mad. But now I’ve found my purpose. It’s a project actually inspired by you. I feel the most wonderful freedom. It wasn’t me. Nicole. You are unlike any courtier I have ever met. Tomorrow, at the masque I shall make it known to the world.
Danielle: Why did you have to be so wonderful?
Prince Henry: Now, then. What was it you wanted to tell me?
Danielle: Simply that last night was the happiest night of my life. Ow! I must go.
Prince Henry: Nicole! No.

This whole transformation reminds me of the song Standing Outside the Fire by Garth Brooks, which I’ve quotes before on earlier posts:

We call them cool
Those hearts that have no scars to show
The ones that never do let go
And risk the tables being turned

We call them fools
Who have to dance within the flame
Who chance the sorrow and the shame
That always comes with getting burned

But you’ve got to be tough when consumed by desire
‘Cause it’s not enough just to stand outside the fire

We call them strong
Those who can face this world alone
Who seem to get by on their own
Those who will never take the fall

We call them weak
Who are unable to resist
The slightest chance love might exist
And for that forsake it all

They’re so hell-bent on giving, walking a wire
Convinced it’s not living if you stand outside the fire

Standing outside the fire
Standing outside the fire
Life is not tried, it is merely survived
If you’re standing outside the fire

There’s this love that is burning
Deep in my soul
Constantly yearning to get out of control
Wanting to fly higher and higher
I can’t abide
Standing outside the fire

Standing outside the fire
Standing outside the fire
Life is not tried, it is merely survived
If you’re standing outside the fire

Standing outside the fire
Standing outside the fire
Life is not tried, it is merely survived
If you’re standing outside the fire 

Without that Passion Danielle had that Henry caught, we truly are merely surviving.  Without it Fate overcomes us, directs us, controls us.  We go through life on auto pilot, taking the default choice, having no control of our life, and often not even realizing it.  But Passion changes that.  It gives us purpose.  It releases our True Will, our Destiny.  It allows us to step out of the ordinary, out of Fate and her bonds, into the extraordinary, into Destiny and her freedom.  It allows us to burn hot like starfire, not die out like a dying coal.  As Neil Yong sang, later quoted in Highlander, and in Kurt Cobain’s suicide note, “It’s better to burn out than to fade away.”  As Meatloaf sings in Jim Steinman’s Everything Loader than Everything Else:

I know that I will never be politically correct
And I don’t give a damn about my lack of etiquette
As far as I’m concerned, the world could still be flat
And if the thrill is gone, then it’s time to take it back
If the thrill is gone, then it’s time to take it back

Passion is that thrill in life, the spark, the fire.  We were made to burn hot like the stars we come from, not smolder and smoke and go out.  T. Thorn Coyle says in Evolutionary Witchcraft that Victor Anderson talked about four types of fire.  These were: coal, flame, arc, and star.  Think about these a moment.

A coal, and ember, holds heat for a long time, if other heat is present.  It doesn’t burn like the others, but it cooks evenly and can be used to light other fires.  It is the fire that is used to forge iron.  This is the level most people’s Passion burns at, the Aleph 1 of Passion, Infinite Passion if we only knew it.

Next we find the flame.  When fuel is added to a coal, you get flame.  Flame burns hotter, but less even than a coal.  It creates some change, turning the fuel (assuming a wood fuel) into more coals.  This is where Henry was after contact with Danielle.  She began to light something in him, fanning coal to flame.  This is the Aleph 2 of Passion, infinity raised to the power of infinity.  These are the people we find who are driven, who we can taste the Passion in, but who haven’t fully stepped into Destiny, and those who have burned at arc or star fire and are now walking in Destiny, but have calmed from the initial high to a more sustainable point.

Arc fire is short lived but instantly changes.  It is more powerful than a flame, but then is gone.  It is lightning from heaven.  It is an arc welder instantly joining two pieces of metal.  This is the Aleph 3 of Passion, infinity raised to infinity to infinity.  This is a sip from Odin’s Mead of Poetry, a sip from Ceridwen’s Cauldron of Inspiration.  It changes you in an instant.  It is Epiphany or Revelation.  It is the Tongues of Fire of Pentecost, it is Buddhist Enlightenment.  You will never be the same.  But it isn’t the greatest Passion, the greatest fire.

Star Fire is the fire of the gods, ecstasy, frenzy, berserk.  This is the Feast of Dionysus, the Berserking of Odin, the panic of Pan.  Wild uncontrolled Passion.  Fire so hot is consumes us.  This is Aleph 4 of Passion, infinity to the infinity to the infinity to the infinity.  This is Passion at its most extreme, at its hottest.

Coal fire is heated to flame fire.  Flame fire is heated to arc fire.  Arc fire is heated to star fire.  Star fire recharges arc fire.  Arc fire recharges flame fire.  Flame fire recharges coal fire.  Star fire is the mountain top.  It is important, it is needed, but we can’t live there.  As the Meat Puppets sing:

Coming down from the mountain
I have seen the high and mighty
I will go again someday
But for now I’m coming down
Coming down from the mountain
I have seen the lofty glory
I will go again someday
But for now I’m coming down

Looking back at Ever After, we see that Danielle is Henry’s Muse.  She is the inspiration that leads him to his life work, to the building of a library where anyone can go and study.  Her Passion, which fanned his coals to flame, is arc fire, changing him forever.

In Classic Greek myth and belief, there are nine Muses, the Mousai.  These are daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne, of the Divine and Memory.  For it is when Muninn, Memory, the past, connects with the Divine that inspiration comes.  Inspiration builds on the past, but transforms it in the Star Forge of the Divine.  The Muses are Calliope (epic poetry), Clio (history), Euterpe (flutes and lyrical poetry), Thalia (comedy and pastorial poetry), Melpomene (Tragedy), Terpsichore (dance), Erato (love poetry), Polyhymnia (sacred poetry), and Urania (astronomy).  They’re leader was Apollo.  They are goddesses of knowledge, and remember all things that have passed before, a legacy from their mother.  They can be seen as chroniclers or historians of all time.  They are the past, pointing to the future.  They are the Threads of Fate.  They are also goddesses of wells, the deep flowing water below the earth that we can drink from.  This water is Odin’s Mead of Poetry, and the content of Ceridwen’s Cauldron of Inspiration.  It is the Well of Mimir, the Rolling Cauldron, and the Well of Urd.  It is significant the Brigid is both a goddess of wells and a goddess of fire.  The Muses pull forth Memory and use it as fuel to light the fire of Passion.

It is only through Passion that Change can come, the true power of witchcraft.  It is only through Passion that we can overcome Fate and find the true Graal.  It is only through Passion that we can learn to bind and loose the Threads of Fate.  It is only through Passion that we kind find our Destiny and True Will.  It is only through Passion that we can change the world.  Passion is the Catalyst, the Changer of Fate, and it is the Nexus, the Bringer of Destiny.

The movie Ever After ends with a line that sums this all up nicely.  “My great-great-grandmother’s portrait hung in the university up until the Revolution. By then, the truth of their romance had been reduced to a simple fairy tale. And, while Cinderella and her prince did live happily ever after, the point, gentlemen, is that they lived.”

FFF,
~Muninn’s Kiss

 
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Posted by on September 14, 2012 in muninnskiss

 

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Winter Solstice Song

Winter Solstice Song
By Lisa Thiel

Enter the night and you’ll find the light,
That will carry you to your dreams.
Enter the night, let your spirit take flight,
In the field of infinite possibilities

On the longest night we search for the light,
And we find it deep within.
Open your eyes to embrace what is wise,
And see the light of your own soul shining.

Enter the night and you’ll find the light,
That will carry you to your dreams.
Enter the night, let your spirit take flight,
In the field of infinite possibilities

Wrap up in the cloak of starry darkness my child,
And you’ll find the center of all things.
For from this space of the deepest dark place,
Life Eternal does spring.

Enter the night and you’ll find the light,
That will carry you to your dreams.
Enter the night, let your spirit take flight,
In the field of infinite possibilities

So when you find that spark
When you dream in the dark,
Hold it close to your heart and know.
All that you see is all that can be
When you give birth to the dreams of your soul.
Enter the night and you’ll find the light,
That will carry you to your dreams.
Enter the night, let your spirit take flight,
In the field of infinite possibilities.

 
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Posted by on December 21, 2011 in muninnskiss

 

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Music of Ecstasy

The following is my Ecstasy playlist.  I’d love to just turn it on and dance in ecstasy for an hour or so, but I never have the time.  Some of them are great for ecstatic trance, and I’ve used some of them that way.

  1. A Place in the Hills – Bethany de Maio
  2. Harvest of The Moon – Steeleye Span
  3. We Will Dance – David Ruis
  4. The Old Ways – Loreena McKennitt
  5. Shalott – Emilie Autumn
  6. The Lady Of Shalott – Loreena McKennitt
  7. All Souls Night – Loreena McKennitt
  8. Spirit Of The Sovereign Lord – Andy Park
  9. The Mystic Dream – Loreena McKennitt
  10. Starkindler – Michael Card
  11. Did You Feel The Mountains Tremble? – Delirious?
  12. The Bonny Swans – Loreena McKennitt

1. A Place in the Hills – Bethany de Maio

There’s a place in the hills that I love to roam
Where the bracken shines gold in the light of the sun
There I am reminded of strength of the one
Who guards my soul from all evil

In the fire of the candle or the light of the moon
You will see that my eyes are still smiling for you
For there’s no other love that warms my heart
The tender way that you do

Like the flight of the eagle my spirit does soar
To be found in your presence
I couldn’t want more
For when I am there I know fullness of joy
And a peace beyond understanding

It’s so soothing to walk through valleys of green
By high rugged crags and cool mountain streams
Though troubled times come and nations are torn
God’s word will never be shaken

As the speed of the deer is so swift and so sure
I know that my Savior he’ll come back once more
To gather his people from all tribes and lands
‘Till then, I’ll wait for my bridegroom
‘Till then, I’ll wait for my bridegroom
‘Till then I’ll wait for my bridegroom

2. Harvest of the Moon – Steeleye Span
All the husbands and the wives
We were dancing for our lives
All to the tune of Elsie Marley
Instead of gathering up our differences
And throwing them in the air
And giving them to the wind that shakes the barley
And the children they were watching
Every girl and every girl
As we danced to the tune of Elsie Marley
But they’d heard another tune
From the harvest of the moon
That rides upon the wind that shakes the barley
The Bridget she declared
That she was not prepared
To watch us dance to the tune of Elsie Marley
She said I’ll sing you all a song
And you’ll want to sing along
If you listen to the wind that shakes the barley
And the song that she sang
Could be heard for miles around
The air was full of harmony
You should have heard the sound
As we gathered up our differences
And threw them in the air
And gave them to the wind that shakes the barley
All the husbands and the wives
We were dancing for our lives
All to the tune of Elsie Marley
Until we gathered up our differences
And threw them in the air
And gave them to the wind that shakes the barley
Then all of us declared
That we were not prepared
To dance our lives away with Elsie Marley
For we’d heard another tune
From the harvest of the moon
That rides upon the wind that shakes the barley
And the song that we sang
Could be heard for miles around
The air was full of harmony
You should have heard the sound
As we gathered up our differences
And threw them in the air
And gave them to the wind that shakes the barley

3. We Will Dance – David Ruis

Sing a song of celebration
Lift up a shout of praise
For the bridegroom will come
The glorious one
And oh we will look on his face
We’ll go to a much better place

And dance with all your might
Lift up your hands and clap for joy
The time’s drawing near
When he will appear
And oh we will stand by his side
A strong pure spotless bride

We will dance on the streets that are gold
The glorious pride at the great son of man
Let every tongue and tribe and nation
Rejoice in the song of the lamb

4. The Old Ways – Loreena McKennitt
The thundering waves are calling me home unto you
The pounding sea is calling me home unto you
On a dark new year’s night
On the west coast of Clare
I heard your voice singing
Your eyes danced the song
Your hands played the tune
T’was a vision before me.
We left the music behind as the dance carried on
As we stole away to the seashore
And smelt the brine, felt the wind in our hair
In sadness you paused.
Suddenly I knew that you’d have to go
Your world was not mine, your eyes told me so
Yet it was there I felt the crossroads of time
And I wondered why.
As we cast our gaze on the tumbling sea
A vision came o’er me
Of thundering hooves and beating wings
In clouds above.
As you turned to go I heard you call my name,
You were like a bird in a cage spreading its wings to fly
“The old ways are lost,” you sang as you flew
And I wondered why.

5. Shalott – Emilie Autumn

She’s locked up with a spinning wheel
She can’t recall what it was like to feel
She says, “This room’s gonna be my grave
And there’s no one who can save me,”
She sits down to her colored thread
She knows lovers waking up in their beds
She says, “How long can I live this way
Is there someone I can pay to let me go
‘Cause I’m half sick of shadows
I want to see the sky
Everyone else can watch as the sun goes down
So why can’t I

And it’s raining
And the stars are falling from the sky
And the wind
And the wind I know it’s cold
I’ve been waiting
For the day I will surely die
And it’s here
And it’s here for I’ve been told
That I’ll die before I’m old
And the wind I know it’s cold…”

She looks up to the mirrored glass
She sees a horse and rider pass
She says, “This man’s gonna be my death
‘Cause he’s all I ever wanted in my life
And I know he doesn’t know my name
And that all the girls are all the same to him
But still I’ve got to get out of this place
‘Cause I don’t think I can face another night
Where I’m half sick of shadows
And I can’t see the sky
Everyone else can watch as the tide comes in
So why can’t I

And it’s raining
And the stars are falling from the sky
And the wind
And the wind I know it’s cold
I’ve been waiting
For the day I will surely die
And it’s here
And it’s here for I’ve been told
That I’ll die before I’m old
And the wind I know it’s cold…”

But there’s willow trees
And little breezes, waves, and walls, and flowers
And there’s moonlight every single night
As I’m locked in these towers
So I’ll meet my death
But with my last breath I’ll sing to him I love
And he’ll see my face in another place,”
And with that the glass above

Her cracked into a million bits
And she cried out, “So the story fits
But then I could have guessed it all along
‘Cause now some drama queen is gonna write a song for me,”
She went down to her little boat
And she broke the chains and began to float away
And as the blood froze in her veins she said,
“Well then that explains a thing or two
‘Cause I know I’m the cursed one
I know I’m meant to die
Everyone else can watch as their dreams untie
So why can’t I

And it’s raining
And the stars are falling from the sky
And the wind
And the wind I know it’s cold
I’ve been waiting
For the day I will surely die
And it’s here
And it’s here for I’ve been told
That I’ll die before I’m old
And the wind I know it’s cold…”


And it’s raining
And the stars are falling from the sky
And the wind
And the wind I know it’s cold
I’ve been waiting
For the day I will surely die
And it’s here
And it’s here for I’ve been told
That I’ll die before I’m old
And the wind I know it’s cold…”

6. The Lady Of Shalott – Loreena McKennitt
On either side of the river lie
Long fields of barley and of rye,
That clothe the world and meet the sky;
And thro’ the field the road run by
To many-towered Camelot;
And up and down the people go,
Gazing where the lilies blow
Round an island there below,
The island of Shalott.
Willows whiten, aspens quiver,
Little breezes dusk and shiver
Thro’ the wave that runs for ever
By the island in the river
Flowing down to Camelot.
Four grey walls, and four grey towers,
Overlook a space of flowers,
And the silent isle imbowers
The Lady of Shalott.
Only reapers, reaping early,
In among the bearded barley
Hear a song that echoes cheerly
From the river winding clearly
Down to tower’d Camelot;
And by the moon the reaper weary,
Piling sheaves in uplands airy,
Listening, whispers “’tis the fairy
The Lady of Shalott.”
There she weaves by night and day
A magic web with colours gay,
She has heard a whisper say,
A curse is on her if she stay
To look down to Camelot.
She knows not what the curse may be,
And so she weaveth steadily,
And little other care hath she,
The Lady of Shalott.
And moving through a mirror clear
That hangs before her all the year,
Shadows of the world appear.
There she sees the highway near
Winding down to Camelot;
And sometimes thro’ the mirror blue
The Knights come riding two and two.
She hath no loyal Knight and true,
The Lady Of Shalott.
But in her web she still delights
To weave the mirror’s magic sights,
For often thro’ the silent nights
A funeral, with plumes and lights
And music, went to Camelot;
Or when the Moon was overhead,
Came two young lovers lately wed.
“I am half sick of shadows,” said
The Lady Of Shalott.
A bow-shot from her bower-eaves,
He rode between the barley sheaves,
The sun came dazzling thro’ the leaves,
And flamed upon the brazen greaves
Of bold Sir Lancelot.
A red-cross knight for ever kneel’d
To a lady in his shield,
That sparkled on the yellow field,
Beside remote Shalott.
His broad clear brow in sunlight glow’d;
On burnish’d hooves his war-horse trode;
From underneath his helmet flow’d
His coal-black curls as on he rode,
As he rode back to Camelot.
From the bank and from the river
He flashed into the crystal mirror,
“Tirra Lirra,” by the river
Sang Sir Lancelot.
She left the web, she left the loom,
She made three paces taro’ the room,
She saw the water-lily bloom,
She saw the helmet and the plume,
She looked down to Camelot.
Out flew the web and floated wide;
The mirror cracked from side to side;
“The curse is come upon me,” cried
The Lady of Shalott.
In the stormy east-wind straining,
The pale yellow woods were waning,
The broad stream in his banks complaining.
Heavily the low sky raining
Over towered Camelot;
Down she came and found a boat
Beneath a willow left afloat,
And round about the prow she wrote
The Lady of Shalott
And down the river’s dim expanse
Like some bold seer in a trance,
Seeing all his own mischance –
With a glassy countenance
Did she look to Camelot.
And at the closing of the day
She loosed the chain and down she lay;
The broad stream bore her far away,
The Lady of Shalott.
Heard a carol, mournful, holy,
Chanted loudly, chanted lowly,
Till her blood was frozen slowly,
And her eyes were darkened wholly,
Turn’d to towered Camelot.
For ere she reach’d upon the tide
The first house by the water-side,
Singing in her song she died,
The Lady of Shalott.
Under tower and balcony,
By garden-wall and gallery,
A gleaming shape she floated by,
Dead-pale between the houses high,
Silent into Camelot.
Out upon the wharfs they came,
Knight and Burgher, Lord and Dame,
And round the prow they read her name,
The Lady of Shalott.
Who is this? And what is here?
And in the lighted palace near
Died the sound of royal cheer;
And they crossed themselves for fear,
All the Knights at Camelot;
But Lancelot mused a little space
He said, “She has a lovely face;
God in his mercy lend her grace,
The Lady of Shalott.”

7. All Souls Night – Loreena McKennitt

Bonfires dot the rolling hillsides
Figures dance around and around
To drums that pulse out echoes of darkness
Moving to the pagan sound.

Somewhere in a hidden memory
Images float before my eyes
Of fragrant nights of straw and of bonfires
And dancing till the next sunrise.

I can see lights in the distance
Trembling in the dark cloak of night
Candles and lanterns are dancing, dancing
A waltz on All, All Souls Night.

Figures of cornstalks bend in the shadows
Held up tall as the flames leap high
The green knight holds the holly bush
To mark where the old year passes by.

I can see lights in the distance
Trembling in the dark cloak of night
Candles and lanterns are dancing, dancing
A waltz on All, All Souls Night.

Bonfires dot the rolling hillsides
Figures dance around and around
To drums that pulse out echoes of darkness
And moving to the pagan sound.

Standing on the bridge that crosses
The river that goes out to the sea
The wind is full of a thousand voices
They pass by the bridge and me

8. Spirit Of The Sovereign Lord – Andy Park

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon you 

Because he has anointed you to preach good news 

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon you 

Because he has anointed you to preach good news 

He has sent you to the poor (This is the year) 

To bind up the broken hearted (This is the day) 

To bring freedom to the captives (This is the year) 

And to release the ones in darkness 
(This is the year) of the favour of the Lord 
(This is the day) of the vengeance of our God 
(This is the year) of the favour of the Lord 
(This is the day) of the vengeance of our God 
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon us 
Because he has anointed us to preach good news 
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon us 
Because he has anointed us to preach good news
He will comfort all who mourn (This is the year) 
He will provide for those who grieve (This is the day) 
He will pour out the oil of gladness (This is the year) 
Instead of mourning you will praise

9. The Mystic Dream – Loreena McKennitt

A clouded dream on an earthly night
Hangs upon the crescent moon
A voiceless song in an ageless light
Sings at the coming dawn
Birds in flight are calling there
Where the heart moves the stones
It’s there that my heart is longing for
All for the love of you

A painting hangs on an ivy wall
Nestled in the emerald moss
The eyes declare a truce of trust
And then it draws me far away
Where deep in the desert twilight
Sand melts in pools of the sky
When darkness lays her crimson cloak
Your lamps will call, call me home.

And so it’s there my homage’s due
Clutched by the still of the night
And now I feel, feel you move
Every breath is full
So it’s there my homage’s due
Clutched by the still of the night
Even the distance feels so near
All for the love of you.

A clouded dream on an earthly night
Hangs upon the crescent moon
A voiceless song in an ageless light
Sings at the coming dawn
Birds in flight are calling there
Where the heart moves the stones
It’s there that my heart is longing for
All for the love of you.

10. Starkindler – Michael Card
A billion bright and Holy beams of a light that traveled far,
Began the trip from His fingertips to the wonder of the stars.
Affirm the signs and seasons, so silently they sing,
Of the wonder of their Kindler, of the power of their King.
O the firey suns above us, in the vast veil of the sky,
Are your servant flames of fire, are your silent holy guides.
And like the starlit Magi, may they guide our souls to you,
As they shine the light of awesome love into eyes that see anew.
A billion bright and Holy beams of a light that traveled far,
Began the trip from His fingertips to the wonder of the stars.
And like the starlit Magi, may they guide our souls to you,
As they shine the light of awesome love into eyes that see anew.

11. Did You Feel The Mountains Tremble? – Delirious?

Did you feel the mountains tremble?
Did you hear the oceans roar?
When the people rose to sing of
Jesus Christ the risen one

Did you feel the people tremble?
Did you hear the singers roar?
When the lost began to sing of
Jesus Christ the risen one

And we can see that God you’re moving
A mighty river through the nations
And young and old will turn to Jesus
Fling wide your heavenly gates
Prepare the way of the risen Lord

Open up the doors and let the music play
Let the streets resound with singing
Songs that bring your hope
Songs that bring your joy
Dancers who dance upon injustice

Did you feel the darkness tremble?
When all the saints join in one song
And all the streams flow as one river
To wash away our brokeness

And here we see that God you’re moving
A time of Jubilee is coming
When young and old return to Jesus
Fling wide your heavenly gates
Prepare the way of the risen Lord

12. The Bonny Swans – Loreena McKennitt
A farmer there lived in the north country
A hey ho bonny o
And he had daughters one, two, three
The swans swim so bonny o
These daughters they walked by the river’s brim
A hey ho bonny o
The eldest pushed the youngest in
The swans swim so bonny o
Oh sister, oh sister, pray lend me your hand
With a hey ho a bonny o
And I will give you house and land
The swans swim so bonny o
I’ll give you neither hand nor glove
With a hey ho a bonny o
Unless you give me your own true love
The swans swim so bonny o
Sometimes she sank, sometimes she swam
With a hey ho and a bonny o
Until she came to a miller’s dam
The swans swim so bonny o
The miller’s daughter, dressed in red
With a hey ho and a bonny o
She went for some water to make some bread
The swans swim so bonny o
Oh father, oh daddy, here swims a swan
With a hey ho and a bonny o
It’s very like a gentle woman
The swans swim so bonny o
They placed her on the bank to dry
With a hey ho and a bonny o
There came a harper passing by
The swans swim so bonny o
He made harp pins of her fingers fair
With a hey ho and a bonny o
He made harp strings of her golden hair
The swans swim so bonny o
He made a harp of her breast bone
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And straight it began to play alone
The swans swim so bonny o
He brought it to her father’s hall
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And there was the court, assembled all
The swans swim so bonny o
He laid the harp upon a stone
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And straight it began to play lone
The swans swim so bonny o
And there does sit my father the King
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And yonder sits my mother the Queen
The swans swim so bonny o
And there does sit my brother Hugh
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And by him William, sweet and true
The swans swim so bonny o
And there does sit my false sister, Anne
With a hey ho and a bonny o
Who drowned me for the sake of a man
The swans swim so bonny o

FFF,
~Muninn’s Kiss

 
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Posted by on October 15, 2011 in muninnskiss

 

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The Fallen: Wisdom and Death, Arddhu and Anna

What can popular media tell us about spiritual things?

The Fallen
By Seether

She’s wearin’ dresses on the borderline
(lookin good)
Or making senses that were lost in time
(make amends)
This liberation is the one they’ll love for ages (hey man I see them comin’ again)
Just cut those dresses make you look so fine (you’re a ten)
Put on that shirt and you’ll look so divine
(i’m impressed)
This generation won’t forgive those signs of aging (hey man I see them comin’ again)
I got my ticket for the next makeover
I got my ticket for a stolen ride

I believe, I believe
I believe in the fallen
I believe, I believe
I believe in the callin’

They got injections for those facial lines (make amends)
Break out the scalpel keep the nose defined
(look again)
A crucifixion of the love we’ve known for ages (hey man i see them comin’ again)
You’re much too pretty you don’t need your mind (just pretend)
Just bat them eyelids get your heart’s desires
A resurrection of the shallow and the vapid
(hey man I see them comin’)

I got my ticket for the next makeover
I lost my taste for this I’ll keep my pride
I believe, I believe
I believe in the fallen
I believe, I believe
I believe in the callin’

Reject

I got my ticket for the next makeover
I lost my taste for this, I’ll keep my pride
I believe, I believe
I believe in the fallen
I believe, I believe
I believe in the callin’
I believe in the callin’

Image from My Jewelry Blog

In my Good Friday post, I talked about how our society doesn’t like death and avoids the subject.  It isn’t just talking and thinking about it that we, as a society, avoid.  We also do everything we can to eliminate those things that remind us of death.  We use plastic surgery, as this song talks about, to avoid looking like we’re aging, because aging reminds us of death, that we will die some day.  But avoiding death makes life shallow, because death is very much a part of life.  Life loses its meaning without death.

Another way we avoid death is to take people as they get older and put them in old folks homes, and then we don’t visit them, because their age reminds us of our own mortality.  We put them away, out off sight, out of mind.  If we can’t see them, they aren’t there.  If they aren’t there, there is no aging, there is no death.  Hiding them is our immortality.  Or so we hope.

Cora Anderson, Grandmaster of Feri
Image from Harpy Books
Taken by Valerie Walker

There was a time when the elderly were venerated.  They are wisdom.  They are the ones who would teach the young, imparting their wisdom and experience, at least what the young were willing to listen to.  They might have been too old to do the heavy work required for the community, but they still had a purpose.  They were still valuable, and valued by the community.  By putting our elderly out of sight, we don’t just deny them a purpose to live for, we deny ourselves the wisdom they can impart.  With the loss of their experience, our society is getting dumber and more foolish.  “Where there is no vision, the people perish.”

Death and Wisdom are very closely connected.  Robert Cochrane described the feminine Mysteries as the pentagram as Life/Birth, Love, Maternity, Wisdom, Death/Resurrection.  Wisdom is the stage that proceeds Death.  It grows out of Maternity and heads toward Death and hence Resurrection.  In avoiding Death, we avoid Wisdom.

When I think of Wisdom and Death, I think of the Anna and the Arddhu, the Feri gods returning to God Herself.  One isn’t Wisdom and the other Death, for both are both Wisdom and Death.  In this situation, they are the Divine Twins.  They are separate, yet they are the same.  They are both near Death, and both long to impart the Wisdom they have to those they care.  They are both dangerous, as Death always is, but their Wisdom is worth it.

Image from
Star of Nuit blog

It is significant that the Anna stands as priestess of the Star Goddess, not young Nimue or nurturing Mari.  It is Wisdom, standing closest to Death, which is also Rebirth, that is closest to God Herself, who can stand as the Bridge between Herself and us.  The marriage of the gods is in Death and Rebirth, an end and a new beginning, like all initiations.  The Anna stands at the Altar of the ineffable, her red veil covering her face, waiting for us to draw near.

The Arddhu stands at the Gates of Death.  But the Gates of Death are also the Gates of Life, another set of Divine Twins.  Everyone comes at the end of their life in from of Arddhu, and all pass him coming into the world.  It’s the same Gates, yet we see them differently depending on which direction we pass.  Storm says Arddhu is Guardian of the Crossroads.  Crossroads are transition points, liminal points, the passages between worlds.  As are the Gates of Life and Death.  What is Witch without the crossing between worlds?  And how do you cross without Arddhu?  All must come to him, but Witch comes early.

FFF,
~Muninn’s Kiss

*And, as my About This Journal page states, this entry, like all my entries, express my opinions, my experiences, my ideas.  Though they are influenced by others and I quote others, don’t take what I say as dogma or doctrine for any tradition or religion.

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2011 in muninnskiss

 

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