Moura Bhajan Friday, Feb 29 2008 

Miss Carola Strub wrote:

In Moura season it is appropriate to examine the heart and become aware of ones kears and shortcomings, the thorns that keep us from complete union with the Divine Mother.

Such an examination is a humbling experience, at least for me, because there are a lot of thorns in my heart. To know that there is nobody to blame for this but myself is even more humilating. But strangely enough being humilated such, my mind becomes peaceful. There is no need anymore for hankering after this or complaining over that, for I have earned every hardship that I experience and even worse, if Dea by Her grace would not have taken a part of it away. Yes, the kears of pride, envy, hatred, ingratitude, disrespect etc are there in my heart and at times I even enjoyed them. I am weak willed and would have no hope for deliverance, if Our Saviour the Divine Daughter had not travelled to the heart of darkness and by Her sacrifice drawn the Mother to break the doors of hell.

On my knees, my pride humbled, my eyes wet with tears of remorse I repeat the name of my Lady. I pray to the Mother not to allow me to develop pride again, because in a humble mood I am able to progress on the path of love for my Lady, for Her creatures and for my true self.

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Maids and the Law Thursday, Feb 28 2008 

A conversation from the Aristasian story The Princess and the Captain:

“D’you think we’ll get into awful trouble?” asked ‘Lannie. “When they catch us, I mean.”

“No, love,” replied Sharrie. “In Novaria a maid’s duty is to do whatever her mistress tells her. If she don’t do that she’s breaking the law. But if she does, she’s in the clear. Any misdemeanour is the responsibility of the mistress.”

The two girls stood facing each other in the ship’s galley in their short black dresses and starched white aprons. Sharrie had been the best cocktail waitress in Chelverton when Princess Melenhe had offered her more money and a life of adventure. After all, one could hardly take to the Aethyr without decent cocktails.

“It’s not like that back home in Quirinelle is it, Sharrie?”

“No, love. In Quirinelle individuals are equal in the eyes of the law, but in Novaria bonded maids are regarded in the light of their bond.”

“But we did volunteer to come up ‘ere with ‘Er ‘Ighness, didn’t we?”

“That don’t make no difference. A maid is supposed to serve her mistress at all times, and whether the mistress is doing wrong is entirely her responsibility – unless she’s under age. Now ‘Er ‘Ighness is under age — but so are we. So if anyone is punished it will still be ‘er, so long as we’re in Novaria, and since it’s a Novarian ship, any proceedings will be Novarian, won’t they?”

“Greenies! You ain’t half well up in the law, Sharrie.”

“You want to be when you get involved in this sort o’ business.”

“But what about ‘Er ‘Ighness? Won’t she get in trouble?”

“She thinks the old Vikhar will get ‘er orf any bother. I don’t know. But she says: ‘Sharrie, are you game for the biggest joy-ride in history? I promise you won’t get into any trouble, but we might all get killed’. So I says: ‘All right’. Then I says that to you, and you says ‘all right’ too. Well, you’re only young once, ain’t you? And if the mistresses ain’t chicken I don’t see why we should be.”

“That’s ‘ow I see it too. Anyway, they’ll look after their own skins, I reckon.”

“I wouldn’t reckon too much on that, love. That Miss Antala don’t care about nothin’.”

“It’s Captain Antala now, Sharrie.”

“Maybe it is; but she still don’t care about nothin’. Come on, hurry up with them cocktails or we won’t even be obeying our mistress. Then we’ll be offenders in Novaria too!”

You can start reading The Princess and the Captain here.

The Jewel in the Lotus Wednesday, Feb 27 2008 

Pendant with Om Mani Padma Hum inscribed on the petals of a lotus
Miss Miggles asked why Aristasians sometimes use Sanskrit mantras such as Om Mani Padme Hum (which may be translated as “The Jewel in the Lotus”).

Lady Aquila answered:
Mantras are very special words, because Dea is immanent in Her names. In pronouncing them, we are – through Her grace – literally in-voking Her.

It must be borne in mind that our connexion with Aristasia Pura is an aethyric one. While conversations are “translated” into words, they are not actually verbal, which is why, for example, we cannot say whether Westrenne closely resembles English in a “literal” sense or only symbolically.

It must also be understood that, both in Telluria and Pura there are Sacred Languages and languages that are not sacred. Sanskrit, Chinese, Hebrew and Arabic are sacred languages. Latin, although it is an Ecclesiastical language is not a sacred language. And neither are any modern languages.

What this means is that a Sacred Language has a more direct connexion to “the first, the Mother-language” and its words are more closely related to the metaphysical actuality of the things they speak. In the original Angelic Tongue, each word would be the precise sound-analogue of an Archetype. In the Sacred Languages that have survived into the Age of Iron this, of course is very far from the case, but they have, especially in sacred contexts, a sufficient remnant of the Angelic Tongue to be effective for Divine Invocation.

In Aristasia Pura, Westrenne is not a Sacred Language and true Raihiralan Cairen is: so words of sacred efficacy will be retained from older languages.

There is further the case of certain very special special syllables, notably OM and HRIM (HREEM) which are directly analogous to the Primordial Word (OM in the pure, beyond-form aspect, HRIM as the Supernal Mother). These are transmitted from the earliest Tellurian times and are as near to the Primordial Universal Language as we can possibly come. It should be noted that even in the Far East these Mantras are unchanged from their “Indo-European” forms: and we place “Indo-European” in inverted commas precisely because we have here to do with something that far transcends and predates any surviving (even if “dead”) Tellurian language.

A Wander-Child Monday, Feb 25 2008 

Rayati.

My name is Sakura. Perhaps that is because like the cherry blossom I come to this world for a short time and then am blown away by the wind. I cannot say.

Since I was very small, this Telluria did not feel like a home to me. I knew that far away was my real home, my Motherland. I knew that my Heavenly Mother watched over me and this was not a father.

People said I was a silly child and perhaps I was a silly child. But even a silly child knows her Mother.

When I came to Aristasia, I knew I had come home, and this was my Motherland at last. I understand that I am from Novaria and I feel in connexion with that beautiful land.

I have asked many questions and I ask more questions, because that way I learn more and more about the Motherland.

Life is still difficult, because still I am in Telluria and very much not-at-home, but now that I know the Motherland I am much happier, and I hope to draw closer by and by.

Warm greetings to you all.

Great and Terrible Dea Sunday, Feb 24 2008 

Thou art both gross and subtle,
Thou art terrible and a great power,
Thou removest all great sins,
O Mahalakshmi obeisance to Thee.

Both gross and subtle indicates that Dea manifests herself in both “gross” (bodily) form and in Her subtle (formless) state. She rules both the material world and all the subtle degrees of manifestation.

The word terrible (perhaps confusing because of its colloquial usage) is also applied to the Christian vision of Deity. It indicates the “holy terror” felt by lesser beings when confronted with the awesome majesty of supreme Deity. The Devi Gita describes the awe and terror felt by the angels when faced with Dea in Her unmodified majesty; whereupon She graciously showed Herself in Her beautiful feminine form in order to reassure and comfort them.

For the full hymn and commentary:
The Great Hymn to Mahalakshmi

An Art-Neo Palace Friday, Feb 22 2008 

Following the article on Art Neo in Aristasia, here is an account of a visit to Eltham Palace, London, a fine example of Art Neo in Telluria.

Yesterday I went with two brunettes to what may be the finest private Art-Neo house in the world – certainly the finest to be located in a mediaeval palace!

You really must see for yourself. Take a virtual tour; and don’t on any account omit the Dining Room or Virginia Courtauld’s bedroom. This is Art-Neo splendour at its finest. (Once there, if the movie doesn’t rotate for you, click and drag within the picture to turn it at will).

In the dining room, the ceiling is “gilded” with aluminium leaf – how terribly modern! and in the panorama the fireplace does not come across in its true splendour, so it is worth finding a close-up of that.

The palace itself is the most glorious marriage of rich tradition with up-to-the minute Art-Neo and we visited on the perfect day, gloriously sunny in early autumn when the great willows are still green and trailing into the moat, and yet there are also golden, yellow and red leaves of Autumn to be seen.

In the tea-room the waitresses are uniformed like Trentish maids and we had egg mayonnaise sandwiches followed by scones with clotted cream and strawberry jam with green tea for the orientally inclined and Earl Grey for the less so.

For those of us who are considering Art-Neo for the style of our own hestia, here is an example of the style at its very finest.

The Calendar Thursday, Feb 21 2008 

Moura, the current month, is the last in the Aristasian year. The Aristasian Perpetual Calendar will allow you to see all Aristasian dates for any year in relation to the Tellurian dates and to find all the Aristasian Festivals and Seasons.

This is the Westrenne Calendar, a five-month solar calendar of thirteen 28-day months. It is used in the five Westrenne Provinces, including Novaria, in much of West Arcadia and in a few parts of far-West “Amazonia”.

In most parts of the East that are in regular communication with the West, the Westrenne Calendar is used for secular purposes, since it is universally known and very uncomplicated in comparison with some Estrenne calendar systems.

In the West and some near parts of the East it is both the Sacred and the secular Calendar, and that is its status in Aristasia-in-Telluria (although we also tend to use the Tellurian Calendar as a secular Calendar, at least for purposes of cross-reference).

The resemblance of the Aristasian devotional Calendar to the Christian Calendar has been observed, particularly in the festivals of Eastre and Nativity and its stress on the solstices, equinoxes and cross-quarter days. In fact this Calendar is the natural one for Europe because of the divinely-ordained symbolism of its climate and seasons, as it is for the Aristasian West. Even in Telluria it is much older than Christianity.

Also see the Calendar article in the Encyclopaedia Aristasiana.

Three-Fold Dea Wednesday, Feb 20 2008 

The Mother is the Creator of the world, and Ground of all being. She is pure Life, pure Light and pure energy. All life, all action and all thought flow from Her.

The Mother, the Creatrix, is Dea seen in Her expansive or creative mode. The term “energy” needs to be treated carefully. It should certainly not be confused in any way with the conceptions of modern physics. The Sanskrit term shakti, understood in its highest sense, as the creating, enabling and animating power of the cosmos, is much nearer to the sense intended here. The Mother can also be seen as Maya, the all-beneficent provider of the world She has made for us to inhabit.

Her Daughter is pure love. As Princess of the World, She governs all the cycles of life and nature; as Priestess of the World, She gives us Communion with Her Mother; as Queen of Heaven, She shall bring us at last to the Celestial Throne.

The Daughter is Dea in Her aspect of Love. We may see that She is, in some senses, continuous with the Mother — continuing Her creative play, manifesting the love that is inherent in the Mother and mediating these things to our fallen state. Some would argue that the separation between Mother and Daughter is to some extent artificial, but the Filianists regard Her as the form in which we should approach Dea because She makes our approach to the Mother possible, especially in this dark age.

The Dark Mother is Absolute Deity, Who existed before the beginning of existence and is beyond being and unbeing. She is outside space and time; She is all that is and all that is not. The exhalation of Her breath or Spirit is our Mother, the Creator of the world. Of Her other Acts, our minds cannot conceive.

The term “dark” refers to her unknowability, and, to an extent, to the darkness we feel in relation to the final dissolution of the light-world we know: a dissolution which is, in reality, a merging into the love and oneness of Dea. In a certain sense the “Darkness” of the Dark Mother is seen as a Higher Light; a Light so elevated that it does not dazzle our “eyes”, as does the Light of the Mother, but is wholly imperceptible to them. This Mystery is expressed in the words:

Absolute Deity,
Dark beyond the Light, and Light beyond the Darkness.

From A Short Catechism of the Children of Dea

The Symbolism of the Fairy Tale Quest Monday, Feb 18 2008 

The fairy tale opening, “Once upon a time”, sets the scene: as in all true mythology and folklore we are out of mundane history and mundane space, in a realm beyond that of everyday experience. We are in illo tempore “that time”, the primordial time of which it can be said that human actions were symbolic of Eternal truths and the spiritual quest was the daily task – when maid, true to her essential nature, occupied her true “central” position.

The reality of our state upon this earth, separated from the Spirit, Source of all life and joy, and seeking reunion with Her, is the most essential of the symbolic themes of mythology and folklore. Every prince seeking the princess, every child seeking her mother, every questing hero seeking the grail, the golden apples, the singing bough or the water of life – all ancient symbols of our Mother God – is the soul seeking Her.

Often the central character is not the only one to set out on a quest, but is one of three, the youngest and silliest. This “silliness” is a purity of heart and a humility (“the wisdom of spirit is folly to the world”) which listens to advice from old peasant women and talking animals. And the supernatural aid which rewards this humility leads to success in the quest.

Those souls not open to Spirit can achieve only on the human level, where they achieve at all. More often they are deceived by a pleasant but maleficent stranger (the illusions of the world) or lured into a wayside inn where they are pauperised or even killed; while the despised youngest, with supernatural aid, becomes the highest in the land.

Often it is simplicity, humility and obedience – which prompt the soul to the other virtues: courage, generosity (freeing trapped animals, sharing scanty food with strangers), wisdom (correctly solving riddles, performing impossible feats – helped or instructed by Spirit in Her various guises). For it is only through Spirit that Spirit is attained.

From Fairytales from Eternity

Art Neo in Aristasia Pura Sunday, Feb 17 2008 

Art Neo is often regarded as equivalent to Tellurian Art Deco, but it resembles only those parts of Art Deco that are theatrical, feminine and sound. It also includes some elements of what is usually termed Art Nouveau. The term is also applied much
more broadly than Art Deco – for example, Trentish dance-band music is termed “Art-Neo music”.

Art Neo is considered as primarily the art of Novaria which has spread to other provinces: notably neighbouring Vintesse and Trent. Art Neo is not merely an aesthetic style but an applied aesthetic philosophy.

Art Neo in Telluria has been called a “blind aesthetic” because while it provides a counter to the aesthetics of deformism it, unlike them, has no underlying philosophy. It was a healthy aesthetic reaction against the Cult of Ugliness, but it was no more than an instinctive reflex.

In Aristasia, conversely, Art Neo is a deliberate and conscious attempt to adapt traditional aesthetic and spiritual values to the exigencies of a machine age. Art Neo, with its recurring solar motifs and uplifting quality, is a fully considered attempt to come to terms with the “problem of the machine” and bring a machine-dominated world into conformity with the eternal Principles of tradition.

This is possible because technics in Aristasia, rather than growing out of a revolutionary rationalist and anti-traditionalist movement (such as the 17th-century “Enlightenment” in Telluria) have always been seen as the legitimate, if in some respects distant, descendant of traditional Spirit-centred science.

As in Telluria, images and forms from traditional cultures play an important role in Art-Neo style. While in Telluria this is a mere “playing” with traditional forms, albeit frequently with an instinctive feeling for their remythologising depth, in Aristasia this is done with a conscious intention of maintaining and restoring links with tradition and keeping modern culture well-rooted in the sacred and nourishing Ancestral soil.

From Art Neo in the Encyclopaedia Chelouranya

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