Sometimes you meet a great artist, and human. Noel is such a person. He recently had an almost catastrophic heart attack. Shortly after being admitted to hospital, he and his beloved Janae both tested positive for Covid.
At this point they are at home, recovering hopefully from all of this situation. Yet, they need assistance, as neither are able to work, and having no income at the present. This is a good cause, and truthfully any of us could be in the same situation in the US due to the abysmal medical & social systems that are in place.
I hope you can assist them get through this crisis period. Links to a Gofundme and Mealtrain are below. Please check out their story on those links.
“Asher” A new piece. I haven’t come up another name as of yet.
Magick is Afoot! “Art finds her own perfection within, and not outside of, herself. She is not to be judged by any external standard of resemblance.” – Oscar Wilde
Hello Dear Friends, off to the start of another Gregorian Calendar Event…
In General: The last year 2022, (as if you need reminding) was a wild ride for all and sundry. On the main, enjoyable, but gone, poof, just like that. I am okay with letting it go though. It seemed on the main to be a point of stasis on multiple levels. I am not going to wax on about politics. Sick of it, at this point. Just let me say I think we live in a failed system. House cleaning, is needed.
2022 might be the year that social media began to wane, and crawl back under the rock it emerged from. Seeing the slow cascading of Twitter into oblivion, FB looking dire, Instagram being cited for toxicity for young women, and Tiktok being a tool of the Chinese Government and disinfo central… Good riddance. It may take a few years, but we can pray for it to go away. I found this article to be quite enlighteningBring Back Personal Blogging
“The Garden” Invisible College Review #11
I will be putting out my art book soon. Re-editing of course. Almost there. Stressing about the minutiae re page design as I am given to do.
You are now reading the beginning of my re-imagining of “The Hare’s Tale”. which deals more with mythology, poetry, music, politics etc. There is some 20 years of personal writing, etc. scattered throughout the entries here.
I will continue to post art here, and at Instagram, Mastodon, Ello…
Top of the New Year!
Gwyllm Art Calendar! https://py.pl/7BMiMsCHJao
Available Now! (US sales only at this time)
My Art Calendar for 2023! 14 illustrations.
So, AI generated illustration has been tearing through the Interwebs as of late. People are claiming to be artist because their phrases/prompts are “creating” pieces. I have heard everything from, “Who has the time to learn?”, “Who wants to put in the years of discipline to produce “Art”?. Well I would suggest the term “Phrasers or Prompters” as opposed to artist.
AI “illustration” is based on software scavenging image from artist pieces that are resident on the web, yet, there is no recompense for said artist. See the article above… Is it outright theft?
Question: If you prompt a text generator AI to write a poem, does that make you a poet?
These are legitimate questions IMO. Thoughts? Do we end 40k years of human expression for convenience/speed?
Starting Off The New Year Spoken Word Events!
Spoken Word: Ancient Celtic Anarchy & Music Tuesday 1/3 8:00PM Pacific Coast Time & Friday 1/6 8:00PM Pacific Coast Time
More Spoken Word Coming. We are aiming to have an event every or every other day if possible. Request are appreciated!
On The Menu:
The Trooping Fairies – Changelings
Whit Griffin Poems
Martyn Bennett & Sorley MacLean/Poetry-Music
_____________________________________ Alan Stivell – I was lucky enough to see him perform this piece and others, twice. Once in Freiburg, Germany the late 1970’s, and then at McCabes’ in Santa Monica late 1980’s. He is the real deal.
————————————————– The Trooping Fairies Changelings…
Sometimes the fairies fancy mortals, and carry them away into their own country, leaving instead some sickly fairy child, or a log of wood so bewitched that it seems to be a mortal pining away, and dying, and being buried. Most commonly they steal children. If you “over look a child”, that is look on it with envy, the fairies have it in their power. Many things can be done to find out if a child’s a changeling, but there is one infallible thing–lay it on the fire with this formula, “Burn, burn, burn–if of the devil, bum; but if of God and the saints, be safe from harm” (given by Lady Wilde). Then if it be a changeling it will rush up the chimney with a cry, for, according to Giraldus Cambrensis, “fire is the greatest of enemies to every sort of phantom, in so much that those who have seen apparitions fall into a swoon as soon as they are sensible of the brightness of fire”.
Sometimes the creature is got rid of in a more gentle way. It is on record that once when a mother was leaning over a wizened changeling the latch lifted and a fairy came in, carrying home again the wholesome stolen baby. “It was the others,” she said, “who stole it.” As for her, she wanted her own child.
Those who are carried away are happy, according to some accounts, having plenty of good living and music and mirth. Others say, however, that they are continually longing for their earthly friends. Lady Wilde gives a gloomy tradition that there are two kinds of fairies–one kind merry and gentle, the other evil, and sacrificing every year a life to Satan, for which purpose they steal mortals. No other Irish writer gives this tradition–if such fairies there be, they must be among the solitary spirits–Pookas, Fir Darrigs, and the like.
– Fairy and Folk Tales of the Irish Peasantry
Edited and Selected by W. B. Yeats 
_____________________________________ Poetry: Whit Griffin “The Ones Who Listen”
(Extract:)At dawn a man with a golden beard
comes down to the brook A morning
of many-colored light Alphabets of
color The Cosmic Colour Fellowship
Friendhood A self-imposed envelope
of colorI think of some old monk or sage who
grew up in a traditional family in some
far-off place and has lived a very full
life of inner exploration And they reflect
back on the life they were born into and
“how far they have come,” and they ask,
“what have I done to deserve such a gift?”The Red Ray, the Life Ray Pass a laser
light through ruby and apply it to the
heart meridian Seeking the Land of
Immortality, the young prince finds himself
in the capital of the Blue Kingdom Cherenkov
radiation The blue men of the MinchYour heart is in the system of the Shewolf
Wrapped in a veil of shining silver mist
A cock crows and a golden star appears
on Lizina’s forehead Sandra’s holding
the leopardWe will cherish the past while not limiting
our perception of reality to the mindset of the pastThe beggar boy becomes Count Piro
Dick Grayson becomes Robin Trading
crow feathers for soy candles The dagger
which was to act as a passport Kosovo,
Field of BlackbirdsLeo Martello’s Witch-In in Central Park,
Halloween, 1970 Alberto Aguas giving
readings at the Metaphysical Bookshop
on Sutter Street, SFCA The anonymous
conversations in Quest Antonio Ricardo
of Turin emigrates to Peru, and in Lima
in 1584 prints a leaflet on corrections to
the calendarI do think that certain texts are almost
invisible to us until we are ready for them
They may sit patiently on a shelf for years,
and when our vibration meets the vibration
emanating from the book, it suddenly becomes
visible to us / materializes / manifests itself
in a tangible way It takes on a psychic shine
that catches our eyeCalvinism is the theology of slavery When
you put your mind in a cage you can put
human beings in cages Enough with the
death cult that invaded the Western hemisphere
The stone age didn’t end because we ran
out of stone. The force that formed the
stone can also dissolve it. Bacchus turned
the amethyst red. No god, but the translator,
turned Andromeda into a dromedary.
Tamberlane’s tent turned from white to red.
Red stones do not appeal to idealists. Roman
widows wore white. Rosicrucians believe iron
is the product of dark powers. The sly fox in
sympathy with the wily god. The lame god
is the provider of all good things.
___ A Welter of Cormorants
If you’re not too busy, my
house is on fire. No close-ups
please, I’m too old. Everything
can be mitigated with the proper
use of scented candles. The
Supreme Court turned the tomato
into a vegetable. Let’s not tussle
on this sandy shore; share the shell.
Around here we say carapace.
You’ve a penchant for the superfluous.
Outfitting a bass boat with an
astrolabe. A moped with no petrol
is just a bike. Help yourself to as
many samosas as you think you
deserve, then go back for seconds.
If animals could talk there’d be
more vegetarians. The moon
shines enough light for the muskrats
to find their ramble. We found
a didgeridoo in Saskatchewan.
The most heavily-scored eleven
minutes of my life.
—————— Martyn Bennett & Sorley MacLean
Of course, this brought up memories.
I dedicate this to those who await us on that far, far shore.
The weight of me in your arms.
A photo of the two of us in Fitzgerald’s Park.
Three years of age I was.
The weight of the pair of us.
Our weight together.
The weight of your hat shading your laughter.
My weight as you bore me for nine months.
The weight of sitting, getting up, lying down.
Your weight that I never lifted from the
Ground – before burying you in the ground.
Your living weight.
Your dead weight.
The weight of words rising and
Falling between us, the wingbeat of swans.
The heavy weight of prayers.
The feather weight of lilting.
The middle weight of memory, ancient spiral.
The weight of the music of your country voice in the city.
The weight of the lipstick on your lips airing vowels.
The weight of your fragrance in the bedroom after giving birth.
The weight of your maternal weariness asking me kindly to go outside.
The weight of your relations.
The weight of intimacy.
The weight of ancestry.
The weight of neighbours.
The weight of tribal lore.
The weight of the great world.
The weight of priests.
The weight of brothers.
The weight of drink.
The weight of history.
The weight of humour.
The weight of those who got away.
The weight of the otherworld.
The weight of your faith.
The sorrowful weight of your fear.
The weight of your shame.
The weight of the two of us as we met for lunch in the city.
The weight of my patience waiting for you at the chapel door.
The weight of your patience waiting for me to enter.
The weight of your praying.
The weight of the crosses of the world.
The weight of your appetite.
The weight of your lingering over food.
The airy weight of a girl stepping it out at a dance.
The weight of the accordion on your shoulders.
The weight of your two knees keeping time with dances.
The weight of your corpse as we waked you three nights and three days.
The weight of the terror in your eyes
As they called to you from the other side.
The weight of your refusal to go.
The weight of the anchor from yonder as it took a firm hold of you.
The weight of secrets that had nowhere now to hide.
The weight of unspoken love that death’s call freed in you.
The weight of confusion that had your head in a merry-go-round.
The weight of life draining away.
The weight of my last visit.
The weight of country folk making their way to the city.
The weight of their murmurings.
The weight of your conversation with us from beyond.
The weight of things you said when
Alive and continued to say in death.
The weight of your language, still.
The weight of the shower that didn’t allow us
To stand very long at the mouth of the grave.
The lightness of your soul that covered us like
The silk sheet on your bed after we buried you.
After we buried you.
(Thanks to Morgan Miller for sharing this to me yesterday.)
On The Menu:
Radio EarthRites Fund Raiser: Save The Music!
Cult | 09-04-22 | by [A]LCrego_
Dead Can Dance: Opium
Greek Fairy Tales: Fairy Hunting
Brendan Perry: The Voyage Of Bran
Dropping back into Blog Land for an entry. Not as much as I would like, but I have found myself with way too many irons in the fire, which does happen with me as I take on too many projects.
At the present, I am working on a talk that I will be giving online in June. I will keep you posted. Quite excited to get back into the ring again, I do wish that things would open up a bit to allow for a speaking tour, no matter how localized in the Northwest/Northern California. Hopefully Covid will burn itself out soon.
Working on Publishing, Radio EarthRites, and of course the SubStack. In my ADHD ways I spin my wheels way too frequently, trying to prioritize what is needed. Spring finally is asserting itself, here in the first weeks of old summer (Which traditionally started on the 1st of May. The back garden is a riot of colour, always amazing to experience.
I hope this finds you well, and not overwhelmed by the world. Hard at times, oh yes.
___________________ Radio EarthRites Fund Raiser: Save The Music!
Every so often we hold a fundraiser for Radio EarthRites.
This year it is more important than ever as our main storage hard drive has crashed, and some 800 GB of music & related files have been lost. (but recoverable!
We have gotten an estimate of $150 to around $600 for recovery of the information and files on the drive.
So, we are asking for a one-time donation or for folks to subscribe to the station to help us recover the music files and attending information we had stored on the drive.
If you can make a donation or sign up for a subscription it would be greatly appreciated.
We have a bunch of new music on the station, and now, a bunch of spoken word shows as well coming up.
e also have a new Radio EarthRites Program & Notes Page, which is also the Radio Page. Please check it out! Info on the music, spoken word, updates, etc.
Our Fund Raiser is being featured on the new page along with this coming week’s new schedule. Stay Tuned! More Music, Spoken Word!
I took my lyre and said:
Come now, my heavenly
tortoise shell: become
a speaking instrument
Leto and Niobe
Before they were mothers
Leto and Niobe
had been the most
devoted of friends
eternal daughter of God,
snare-knitter! Don’t, I beg you,
cow my heart with grief! Come,
as once when you heard my far-
off cry and, listening, stepped
from your father’s house to your
gold car, to yoke the pair whose
beautiful thick-feathered wings
oaring down mid-air from heaven
carried you to light swiftly
on dark earth; then, blissful one,
smiling your immortal smile
you asked, What ailed me now that
me me call you again? What
was it that my distracted
heart most wanted? “Whom has
Persuasion to bring round now
“to your love? Who, Sappho, is
unfair to you? For, let her
run, she will soon run after;
“if she won’t accept gifts, she
will one day give them; and if
she won’t love you — she soon will
“love, although unwillingly…”
If ever — come now! Relieve
this intolerable pain!
What my heart most hopes will
happen, make happen; you your-
self join forces on my side!
Hesperus The Bringer
O Hesperus, thou bringest all good things–
Home to the weary, to the hungry cheer,
To the young bird the parent’s brooding wings,
The welcome stall to the o’erlabored steer;
Whate’er our household gods protect of dear,
Are gathered round us by thy look of rest;
Thou bring’st the child too to its mother’s breast.
Ode To Aphrodite
Deathless Aphrodite, throned in flowers,
Daughter of Zeus, O terrible enchantress,
With this sorrow, with this anguish, break my spirit
Lady, not longer!
Hear anew the voice! O hear and listen!
Come, as in that island dawn thou camest,
Billowing in thy yoked car to Sappho
Forth from thy father’s
Golden house in pity! … I remember:
Fleet and fair thy sparrows drew thee, beating
Fast their wings above the dusky harvests,
Down the pale heavens,
Lightning anon! And thou, O blest and brightest,
Smiling with immortal eyelids, asked me:
‘Maiden, what betideth thee? Or wherefore
Callest upon me?
‘What is here the longing more than other,
Here in this mad heart? And who the lovely
One beloved that wouldst lure to loving?
Sappho, who wrongs thee?
‘See, if now she flies, she soon must follow;
Yes, if spurning gifts, she soon must offer;
Yes, if loving not, she soon must love thee,
Come again to me! O now! Release me!
End the great pang! And all my heart desireth
Now of fulfillment, fulfill! O Aphrodite,
Fight by my shoulder!
Sappho To Her Girlfriends
This is my song of maidens dear to me.
Eranna, a slight girl I counted thee,
When first I looked upon thy form and face,
Slim as a reed, and all devoid of grace.
But stately stature, grace and beauty came
Unto thee with the years — O, dost not shame
For this, Eranna, that thy pride hath grown
Therewith? Alas for thee ! I have not known
One beauty ever of more scornful mien,
As though thou wert of all earth’s daughters queen!
Mnasidica is comelier, perchance,
Than my Gyrinna — ah, but sweetly rings
Gyrinna’s matchless voice ! In rapture-trance
I listen, listen, while Gyrinna sings.
Hero of Gyara is fleet of foot
As fawns, and as light-footed in the dance,
The dance taught by the measures of my lute.
Ever-impassioned Gorgo! — is it strange
That I grow weary of the change on change
Of thine adored ones? — of thy rhapsodies
O’er each new girlfriend, while the old love dies?
Joy to thee, daughter of a princely race,
For thy last dear one! Lie in her embrace —
Till shines a new star on thy raptured eyes!
Fonder of maids thou art, I trow, than she.
The ghost who nightly steal young girls, to be
In Hades of her woeful company.
This is my fair girl-garden: sweet they grow —
Rose, violet, asphodel and lily’s snow;
And which the sweetest is, I do not know;
For rosy arms and starry eyes are there.
Honey-sweet voices and cheeks passing fair.
And these shall men, I ween, remember long;
For these shall bloom for ever in my song.
Greek Fairy Tales: Hunting Fairies
I had never heard of fairies until one autumn evening in our summer home on the highlands of Petsà, which, eagle-like, watches over olive groves, raisin fields and the blue Corinthian Gulf. Laughter and voices raised in greeting woke me from my early sleep and told me that my Grandmother Adamis was being welcomed to the group of neighbor women who had gathered in our garden to tell stories in the moonlight.
“Is it about the Fairy Wife you are going to tell us tonight, Grandmother Adamis?” I heard someone ask.
“Or the Fairy Ring? I thought it was the Fairy Ring!” cried another voice.
“Oh, the fairies’ palace, Grandmother! You promised to tell us about their palace!”
Grandmother Adamis laughed. Rising on my elbow, I could see the younger women hurrying to make a place for her and pass her wine, nuts and cheese. In the center of the group a fire glowed red, in contrast to the clear, silver light of the full moon above. During the autumn months, after the corn is gathered, the grapes crushed and the barrels filled with wine, the villagers spend the evenings out of doors. The older women talk while the girls knit and sing. Now, on Grandmother’s arrival, the girls dropped their work and all grew silent to listen. Grandmother knew more paramythia, myths, than any woman in Eurostena, and she was a born story-teller.
In wonder and a breathless, ecstatic fear, I strained my ears to catch what snatches I could. As the strange stories followed one another, forms, pentamorphes, five times beautiful, seemed to glide before me: maidens in white with flowing, golden hair, handsome youths on horseback, chariots of cloud, seas shimmering with jewels, palaces light as foam and lovely as dew in sunshine. Oh, if I could see these things which Grandmother Adamis described! If I could hear the flute-like voices and silvery music which she said rang through the Fairy Hills!
But the fairies, it seemed, had some terrible, mysterious power. One must beware. One must not venture alone too high among the mountain tops. The fairies might—Grandmother’s voice would sink to a whisper and the circle of heads draw closer about her. I could learn only that all places are safe for him who carries a loaded gun, the highest hills and even the palaces of the fairies. With this thought, as the moon paled and the dawn came and the group in the garden dispersed, I slept.
A gun! That was my first idea on waking. I must have a gun. I intended to see fairies and visit fairy palaces, but where to find the gun? Then I remembered. As soon as I had learned to write at school, an old lady who lived in the neighborhood asked me to write letters for her to her son in America, because she could not write. The first time I went to her house, I noticed a huge, old-fashioned gun hanging on the wall. It had been used, she told me, by her grandfather in the War of 1821, and was called a Karabena. It was very clumsy and had grown rusty, but now as I pictured it, it seemed the most priceless of treasures. There remained only the question of how to make it mine.
For months, whenever I was in the old lady’s house, I gazed longingly at the Karabena every moment that I was not writing, and wondered how I could approach the subject. Then one day the following spring, the lady told me that I had been very good and that she wished to give me something in return for what I had done.
“Will you give me that gun?” I burst out.
“Oh, not that,” she said. “You don’t know how to use it. You would hurt yourself.”
I replied that I knew a great deal about guns from having read about them ever since the autumn. Besides, I said, I would accept nothing else from her, so at last she consented. The Karabena was mine.
It remained hidden for days among the barrels in our cellar, while I cleaned and polished it a little at a time, and collected powder and shot. Finally the gun was loaded and ready, and very proudly did I set out with it across my shoulder. From the stories of Grandmother Adamis, I understood that the fairies often appeared just at noon, but I started early since it was some distance to the top of the Neraidorahe, Fairy Hill, where the entrances to fairy palaces were said to be found. I was congratulating myself on getting away unseen, when my mother’s voice called from the doorway.
“Theodorake I, come back. Where did you get that gun?”
When I told her, she asked what I was about to do with it. My answer was sufficiently evasive.
“Well,” she said, “don’t try to shoot and whatever you do, don’t go up to the Neraidorahe! Evil will come to you!”
After waiting till she had returned to her work, I hurried through the village and started up the mountain.
“Ho, Theodorake!” rang out above me. The old shepherd known to everyone as Uncle Kostas was making his way down the slope toward me. Since I was in no mood for further interruption, I pressed on as if I had not heard.
“Ho there!” came the call again. “I know you, son of Perikles. Where are you going with that Karabena?”
“To the Neraidorahe to hunt fairies,” I replied casually.
“Stop!” He was directly above me now and he planted himself in my way. The picture of him, in his great, loose shepherd’s cloak, with its pointed hood thrown back, his short, full skirt and his brown shoes with a fluffy red ball on each pointed tip, is still vivid in my mind. “See those hills yonder,” he cried, his right hand extended in a dramatic gesture, his white hair blowing in the wind. “On one of those hills the fairies overpowered me. You do not know what they can do. Listen to me. I was older than you are and I had a better gun than your Karabena. A gun cannot save you. The fairies carried me away and kept me for a year and a day, and it was only by a miracle that I escaped from them. They can take you as they took me, but you may never get away. Listen to one who has lived in their palace and learned their ways and been their prisoner!”
Old Uncle Kostas with the help of his staff settled himself heavily on a stone in order to relate his adventure. This was my chance.
“The fairies will not scare me,” I told him. “I will fire at them and chase them back into their caves.”
I darted past him and went on up the mountain side. When I glanced back and saw him plodding slowly downward shaking his head, I laughed to myself. I would show them all.
In the steep, rocky slope above me were several great, black holes like yawning cavern mouths. Perhaps, I thought, these opened on moonlight-flooded gardens and shining palaces and all the beautiful things Grandmother had described. If I could frighten the fairies, I could enter unharmed and see for myself. Carefully I approached the holes, lay down behind a pine tree and made my Karabena ready to shoot at the first fairy that should appear.
Soon I heard the whistle of the noon train and I watched it far below as it hurried along the southern shore of the Gulf. The time had come. For a moment everything was still. Then the gently stirring air brought me a soft, whirring sound that grew louder and louder. The air itself, moving faster and faster, became a wind from the north, and at the same time in front of one opening something white went whirling around and around just above the ground.
A wild fear rushed upon me. The unknown terrors that were whispered of in the garden and the weird power that had seized Uncle Kostas, seemed to grip my heart. Clutching my gun I turned and tore down the mountain side like one mad. I slipped and stumbled, struck my feet against stones and scratched my arms on tree trunks, but nothing stopped me until I reached home and fell into the kitchen in front of my mother. I accepted her scolding humbly and never again did I go fairy-hunting.
________________________________________________ Brendan Perry: The Voyage Of Bran
“What I love is always being born. What I love is beginning always.” — Odysseus Elytis, from “Sun the First,” Selected Poems, transl. Edmund Keeley (Anvil Poetry Press, 1981)
The Old Ways, The New Ways
So much to unpack on the events of the past week. It has been a stressful time for the children of Gaia, as of late. Something, just over the event horizon, is coming, I swear. This entry was begun a few days back. Ukraine/The Russian Incursion was the focus, but I feel it has deeper roots. There is something larger emerging.
I hope that you can take the time to wade through another massive entry. I really should have learned a bit of brevity over the years, but here we are.
Be Safe, Work for Change, Work for Peace
________________________ On The Menu:
Projects as of Late
DakhaBrakha – Khyma
The Old Ways, The New Ways
DakhaBrakha – Vesna
Poetry: Ukrainian Voices
Ukrainian Folk Tales: The Story Of The Wind
DakhaBrakha – Khyma
Projects as of Late:
A week ago, just after my second cataract surgery I decided to stay off social media as much as possible. This has been a real boon to my creative output, and I am happy to say that on the main I have stuck with it.
I checked my phone now three times a day for messages and leave it off unless I’m expecting a call or text or using it to dictate into…
It’s not that I find social media as a bad thing but that it really does interfere with my thought processes and truthfully no one is to blame but myself.
So here are some of the projects I have been up to during my social media fast: The Substack: Roberto Apodaca
Part 1 of the story of my friend Roberto from Maya Country, who helped me on the Poison Path with his creative use of language, symbology and language. A Two-part story, starting in 1966 ending in 1969. Second part coming this weekend…
The Golden Dawn Mix on Radio EarthRites
Lots going on with this mix, Ukrainian Folk, Russian, Terry Riley and many different artists not featured before on Radio EarthRites.
Looking to have more shows soon, returning to having spoken word. as well.
The new show running now, music added to it daily at this point! This show was made in conjunction to re-releasing this print:
In 1966 late in the fall I started attending lectures at a Fourth Way School’s Symposium led by Kenneth Walker (who had been a student of Gurdjieff.)
I was a student of that school for several years until I branched out into Sufism and Gaiian studies. I have though kept in touch with students and teachers at that school ever since, lots of good people, gentle souls. Some I have known from 1967 on.
One of the very interesting things that I heard in a lecture early on, and then later in conversations with a couple of the teachers in the school was that: During the Cuban missile crisis in 1962 there was an international effort by various spiritual, metaphysical and occult schools in conjunction with each other to prevent Nuclear War through meditation, prayer, magical acts as well as organizing, speaking to people, letter writing to newspapers and politicians.
This had me considering over time and in my meditations, what were the possibilities of combined work across the spectrum of the various movements in existence today? I know that within that school now, there is an active group working through the use of their various spiritual tools to help change the current situation.
So here are some thoughts. We have horrible situations unfolding, and ongoing in Yemen, Myanmar, Syria, and now the Ukraine to name but a few of the conflict/war zones. We have famine rolling through Africa, Southwest Asia. The world is still in grip of the Covid Pandemic. We have an ongoing worldwide climate crisis. It seems overwhelming, yet here we are at a juncture where we have tools to actively organize via social media, email, web pages, talking to family, friends, neighbors the same united spiritual front that in my mind, turned the tide in 1962. We know through studies now via Sheldrake and others that consciousness extends to all existence. By working in our homes, community, and online, we can and will make a difference.
What I Suggest:
Form Affinity Groups. Contact your friends, family, community. DO IT.
Develop a Schedule for Group Meditations on Specific Topics, i.e., Ukraine, Afghanistan, Covid, etc.
Make it a Weekly Practice, at least, nightly or daily if you can.
Broadcast your actions on Social Media. Invite others to join in. Organize!!!
Become Active Locally. This is deeply important.
Take Care of Your Loved Ones. Spend Time in Nature, Pray, Meditate, get your hands into the soil. Give thanks for what you have.
I have been publishing this monthly sometimes more often on various Social Media Platforms. I think it is worth getting out there. We have work to do. I will not belabor the point, but our time is Now, and we have much to address.
Poetry: Ukrainian Voices
Lord, the way Tychyna writes:
“And Bely, and Blok, and Yesenin”
the way they surrounded us
on all four sides
give us strength and power
a hastily packed suitcase and bread
naturally their sly foxes lie
that we have neither shields nor centuries
Ihor leads us somewhere
over the Don with his regiments
today with the February snow
and tomorrow with a bloody shield
and their dark forces come from Tmutarakan
and Mokshas and Chud
shoot at our location
hit at the positions we take
so what is there in The Tale of Ihor’s Campaign
and what is there in ancient sounds
you — jumping barefoot as a wolf
spreading the spit of the devil
reached the rivers and borders
reached my clenched heart
your blackened icons
can’t even be cleansed with milk
Lord, the way Tychyna writes
about Kyiv — the Messiah — about the country
why didn’t we learn these poems by heart?
Bleed — my heart — bleed
Vasyl Makhno Translated from the Ukrainian by Olena Jennings
____ The Year of Ukraine
See here we got what we wanted
now Serhiy Nigoyan’s graffiti on the wall
in the square across the way kids play at war
in Donbas the adults are also at play
a square looms on Google Maps another square
it’s a house it’s a boy with a rifle in his hands
if they tell him to shoot he surely will shoot
eff your mother our common motherland
at the store folks load whole sacks with macaroni
and afterwards bury the boxes somewhere
what’s that what crawls down that distant slope
it’s your coffin carried by security troops
we were here you’ll say no we haven’t been here
someone else was killed by sniper fire here
and snow nailed those who came after to earth
the lord’s summer has gone it wasn’t enough
Boris Khersonsky Translated from the Russian by Katherine E. Young
Missa in tempore belli
Lord, have mercy on us,
if You are for us, who can be against us?
Christ, have mercy on us,
especially if our hours are numbered.
Lord, have mercy on us,
especially in days of war
Gloria in excelsis Deo
et in terra pax
hominibus bonae voluntatis.
Glory to God in the highest — wondrous are Your works!
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth — more war.
Glory to God in the highest — be not troubled, soldier, nightingales!
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth — bodies flail,
arms flung wide. People’s will is evil.
Thus it has been and always will.
We praise you, soldier, slender of neck, sharp of throat.
We bless you, soldier, who on bayonet raise up the foe,
We lift on high your long dying groan.
God is cruel at times, but still better than earthly thrones.
We bless you, mister General,
we glorify you, mister President,
you who have robbed us blind,
did the Lord trample down death with death for your kind?
“Yes, sir!” says the General, hand to visor.
He’s taken an oath to submit to his own dear tsar.
But his own dear tsar has flown up on a branch and cries, “Cocka-doodle-doo!”
He has a comb of gold, and a log in each eye, too.
Be glorified in the highest, God, behold not what’s going on down here.
The bullet’s a fool, the bayonet a good boy, one hit — and no more boy to fear.
With the Holy Spirit, to the glory of God the Father.
Cum Sancto Spiritu in gloria Dei Patris.
I believe that God is God alone,
He is Lord of his own.
He is the peace created by Him,
He is the light by whom the world is illumined,
And when battle flags fly, He is their Wind.
Out of black concrete holes the rockets fly.
The unseen world attacks the world in sight.
I believe that in Christ this God was made flesh,
and was crucified on the cross in sculpture and on canvas,
outside of time and yet within time, outside of space and yet on a hill,
between two thieves, a kind of earth-to-earth.
But if life is a sea, Christ stands at the helm
and steers the ship of the universe.
A ship with hundreds of thousands of cannons on board.
I doubt it can dock in the heavenly port.
Christ said, “I bring not peace, but the sword,
and with it, the chance to lie dead in the earth,
but when the reveille plays on the archangel’s trump,
the graves will open right up.
And the skeletons will arise and before our eyes
they’ll grow muscle and then a cover of skin,
and they’ll tread the battlefield in delirium
always, forever and ever, for weather of weathers,
for trenches of trenches, for tranches of tranches,
where once they lay side by side, feeding the lice.
And the lice grew as big as typhoidal cows on the kolhoz,
and the tanks rumbled as good as armored tractors down the rows.”
Holy, holy, holy, the Lord, God of might!
In other words — God of the heavenly hosts, or of the heavenly lights!
You went out with us to war, you seized the foe by the throat!
You filled earth and heaven with Your glory like a jug with wine.
You let the earth turn upside down.
Hosannah in the highest! We’ll see you around in the next world.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord in a glorious
and frightening time, a time of troubles, a time of war,
blessed are those who walk row by row, each one shall be a hero,
salvos three and into the ground they go.
And once again — Hosannah in the highest! Hosannah on high!
The further into battle, the fewer heroes left behind.
Lamb of God, who has freed all people from deadly snares,
Lamb of God, who has borne the immeasurable weight of our sins,
Lamb of God, who has counted and pardoned every fall,
Lamb of God, have mercy on us all.
Lamb of God, Son of the Father, Light from true Light,
Lamb of God, Savior of constellations, planets and stars in the sky,
Lamb of God, who crown your iconostasis,
Lamb of God, have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, little lamb lain on the altar,
a time of war has come. Cinders rise from the earth.
Grant us peace, we are sated with eternal fire.
They say, “We’re starting a war again.”
Dona nobis pacem. Amen.
Boris Khersonsky-Translated from the Russian by Martha M. F. Kelly
_____ problematic cycle – trench after trench. The truth is, the weapon is never clean, once it’s fired.
“When You Clean Your Weapon” by Borys Humenyuk
When you clean your weapon
When time and again, you clean your weapon
When you rub strong-smelling oils into your weapon
And shield it from the rain with your own body
When you swaddle it like a baby
Even though you’ve never swaddled a baby before —
You’re only nineteen, no baby, no wife —
The weapon becomes your only kin
You and the weapon are one.
When you dig trench after trench
When you dig this precious this hateful earth by handfuls
Every other handful reaches your soul
You grind this earth between your teeth
You don’t, you never will have another
You climb into the earth like into your mother’s womb
You are warm and snug
You’ve never felt this close to anyone before
You and earth are one.
When you shoot
Even when it’s at night and you don’t see the enemy’s face
Even when night hides the enemy from you and you from the enemy
And embraces each of you as her own
You smell like gunpowder
Your hands, face, hair, clothing, shoes —
No matter how much you wash them — smell of gunpowder
They smell of war
You smell of war
You and war are one.
__________________ Ukrainian Folk Tales: The Story Of The Wind
Once upon a time there dwelt two brethren in one village, and one brother was very, very rich, and the other brother was very, very poor. The rich man had wealth of all sorts, but all that the poor man had was a heap of children.
One day, at harvest-time, the poor man left his wife and went to reap and thresh out his little plot of wheat, but the Wind came and swept all his corn away down to the very last grain. The poor man was exceeding wrath thereat, and said, “Come what will, I’ll go seek the Wind, and I’ll tell him with what pains and trouble I had got my corn to grow and ripen, and then he, forsooth! must needs come and blow it all away.”
So the man went home and made ready to go, and as he was making ready his wife said to him, “Whither away, husband?”––“I am going to seek the Wind,” said he; “what dost thou say to that?”––“I should say, do no such thing,” replied his wife. “Thou knowest the saying, ‘If thou dost want to find the Wind, seek him on the open steppe. He can go ten different ways to thy one.’ Think of that, dear husband, and go not at all.”––“I mean to go,” replied the man, “though I never return home again.” Then he took leave of his wife and children and went straight out into the wide world to seek the Wind on the open steppe.
He went on farther and farther till he saw before him a forest, and on the borders of that forest stood a hut on hens’ legs. The man went into this hut and was filled with astonishment, for there lay on the floor a huge, huge old man, as grey as milk. He lay there stretched at full length, his head on the seat of honour, with an arm and leg in each of the four corners, and all his hair standing on end. It was no other than the Wind himself. The man stared at this awful Ancient with terror, for never in his life had he seen anything like it. “God help thee, old father!” cried he.––“Good health to thee, good man!” said the ancient giant, as he lay on the floor of the hut. Then he asked him in the most friendly manner, “Whence hath God brought thee hither, good man?”––“I am wandering through the wide world in search of the Wind,” said the man. “If I find him, I will turn back; if I don’t find him, I shall go on and on till I do.”––“What dost thou want with the Wind?” asked the old giant lying on the floor. “Or what wrong hath he done thee, that thou shouldst seek him out so doggedly?”––“What wrong hath he done me?” replied the wayfarer. “Hearken now, O Ancient, and I will tell thee! I went straight from my wife into the field and reaped my little plot of corn; but when I began to thresh it out, the Wind came and caught and scattered every bit of it in a twinkling, so that there was not a single little grain of it left. So now thou dost see, old man, what I have to thank him for. Tell me, in God’s name, why such things be? My little plot of corn was my all-in-all, and in the sweat of my brow did I reap and thresh it; but the Wind came and blew it all away, so that not a trace of it is to be found in the wide world. Then I thought to myself, ‘Why should he do this?’ And I said to my wife, ‘I’ll go seek the Wind, and say to him, “Another time, visit not the poor man who hath but a little corn, and blow it not away, for bitterly doth he rue it!”’”––“Good, my son!” said the giant who lay on the floor. “I shall know better in future; in future I will not blow away the poor man’s corn. But, good man, there is no need for thee to seek the Wind in the open steppe, for I myself am the Wind.”––“Then if thou art the Wind,” said the man, “give me back my corn.”––“Nay,” said the giant; “thou canst not make the dead come back from the grave. Yet, inasmuch as I have done thee a mischief, I will now give thee this sack, good man, and do thou take it home with thee. And whenever thou wantest a meal say, ‘Sack, sack, give me to eat and drink!’ and immediately thou shalt have thy fill both of meat and drink, so now thou wilt have wherewithal to comfort thy wife and children.”
Then the man was full of gratitude. “I thank thee, O Wind!” said he, “for thy courtesy in giving me such a sack as will give me my fill of meat and drink without the trouble of working for it.”––“For a lazy loon, ’twere a double boon,” said the Wind. “Go home, then, but look now, enter no tavern by the way; I shall know it if thou dost.”––“No,” said the man, “I will not.” And then he took leave of the Wind and went his way.
He had not gone very far when he passed by a tavern, and he felt a burning desire to find out whether the Wind had spoken the truth in the matter of the sack. “How can a man pass a tavern without going into it?” thought he; “I’ll go in, come what may. The Wind won’t know, because he can’t see.” So he went into the tavern and hung up his sack upon a peg. The Jew who kept the tavern immediately said to him, “What dost thou want, good man?”––“What is that to thee, thou dog?” said the man.––“You are all alike,” sneered the Jew, “take what you can, and pay for nothing.”––“Dost think I want to buy anything from thee?” shrieked the man; then, turning angrily to the sack, he cried, “Sack, sack, give me to eat and drink!” Immediately the table was covered with all sorts of meats and liquors. Then all the Jews in the tavern crowded round full of amazement, and asked all manner of questions. “Why, what is this, good man?” said they; “never have we seen anything like this before!”––“Ask no questions, ye accursed Jews!” cried the man, “but sit down to eat, for there is enough for all.” So the Jews and the Jewesses set to and ate until they were full up to the ears; and they drank the man’s health in pitchers of wine of every sort, and said, “Drink, good man, and spare not, and when thou hast drunk thy fill thou shalt lodge with us this night. We’ll make ready a bed for thee. None shall vex thee. Come now, eat and drink whatever thy soul desires.” So the Jews flattered him with devilish cunning, and almost forced the wine-jars to his lips.
The simple fellow did not perceive their malice and cunning, and he got so drunk that he could not move from the place, but went to sleep where he was. Then the Jews changed his sack for another, which they hung up on a peg, and then they woke him. “Dost hear, fellow!” cried they; “get up, it is time to go home. Dost thou not see the morning light?” The man sat up and scratched the back of his head, for he was loath to go. But what was he to do? So he shouldered the sack that was hanging on the peg, and went off home.
When he got to his house, he cried, “Open the door, wife!” Then his wife opened the door, and he went in and hung his sack on the peg and said, “Sit down at the table, dear wife, and you children sit down there too. Now, thank God! we shall have enough to eat and drink, and to spare.” The wife looked at her husband and smiled. She thought he was mad, but down she sat, and her children sat down all round her, and she waited to see what her husband would do next. Then the man said, “Sack, sack, give to us meat and drink!” But the sack was silent. Then he said again, “Sack, sack, give my children something to eat!” And still the sack was silent. Then the man fell into a violent rage. “Thou didst give me something at the tavern,” cried he; “and now I may call in vain. Thou givest nothing, and thou hearest nothing”––and, leaping from his seat, he took up a club and began beating the sack till he had knocked a hole in the wall, and beaten the sack to bits. Then he set off to seek the Wind again. But his wife stayed at home and put everything to rights again, railing and scolding at her husband as a madman.
But the man went to the Wind and said, “Hail to thee, O Wind!”––“Good health to thee, O man!” replied the Wind. Then the Wind asked, “Wherefore hast thou come hither, O man? Did I not give thee a sack? What more dost thou want?”––“A pretty sack indeed!” replied the man; “that sack of thine has been the cause of much mischief to me and mine.”––“What mischief has it done thee?”––“Why, look now, old father, I’ll tell thee what it has done. It wouldn’t give me anything to eat and drink, so I began beating it, and beat the wall in. Now what shall I do to repair my crazy hut? Give me something, old father.”––But the Wind replied, “Nay, O man, thou must do without. Fools are neither sown nor reaped, but grow of their own accord––hast thou not been into a tavern?”––“I have not,” said the man.––“Thou hast not? Why wilt thou lie?”––“Well, and suppose I did lie?” said the man; “if thou suffer harm through thine own fault, hold thy tongue about it, that’s what I say. Yet it is all the fault of thy sack that this evil has come upon me. If it had only given me to eat and to drink, I should not have come to thee again.” At this the Wind scratched his head a bit, but then he said, “Well then, thou man! there’s a little ram for thee, and whenever thou dost want money say to it, ‘Little ram, little ram, scatter money!’ and it will scatter money as much as thou wilt. Only bear this in mind: go not into a tavern, for if thou dost, I shall know all about it; and if thou comest to me a third time, thou shalt have cause to remember it for ever.”––“Good,” said the man, “I won’t go.”––Then he took the little ram, thanked the Wind, and went on his way.
So the man went along leading the little ram by a string, and they came to a tavern, that very same tavern where he had been before, and again a strong desire came upon the man to go in. So he stood by the door and began thinking whether he should go in or not, and whether he had any need to find out the truth about the little ram. “Well, well,” said he at last, “I’ll go in, only this time I won’t get drunk. I’ll drink just a glass or so, and then I’ll go home.” So into the tavern he went, dragging the little ram after him, for he was afraid to let it go.
Now, when the Jews who were inside there saw the little ram, they began shrieking and said, “What art thou thinking of, O man! that thou bringest that little ram into the room? Are there no barns outside where thou mayst put it up?”––“Hold your tongues, ye accursed wretches!” replied the man; “what has it got to do with you? It is not the sort of ram that fellows like you deal in. And if you don’t believe me, spread a cloth on the floor and you shall see something, I warrant you.”––Then he said, “Little ram, little ram, scatter money!” and the little ram scattered so much money that it seemed to grow, and the Jews screeched like demons.––“O man, man!” cried they, “such a ram as that we have never seen in all our days. Sell it to us! We will give thee such a lot of money for it.”––“You may pick up all that money, ye accursed ones,” cried the man, “but I don’t mean to sell my ram.”
Then the Jews picked up the money, but they laid before him a table covered with all the dishes that a man’s heart may desire, and they begged him to sit down and make merry, and said with true Jewish cunning, “Though thou mayst get a little lively, don’t get drunk, for thou knowest how drink plays the fool with a man’s wits.”––The man marvelled at the straightforwardness of the Jews in warning him against the drink, and, forgetting everything else, sat down at table and began drinking pot after pot of mead, and talking with the Jews, and his little ram went clean out of his head. But the Jews made him drunk, and laid him in the bed, and changed rams with him; his they took away, and put in its place one of their own exactly like it.
When the man had slept off his carouse, he arose and went away, taking the ram with him, after bidding the Jews farewell. When he got to his hut he found his wife in the doorway, and the moment she saw him coming, she went into the hut and cried to her children, “Come, children! make haste, make haste! for daddy is coming, and brings a little ram along with him; get up, and look sharp about it! An evil year of waiting has been the lot of wretched me, but he has come home at last.”
The husband arrived at the door and said, “Open the door, little wife; open, I say!”––The wife replied, “Thou art not a great nobleman, so open the door thyself. Why dost thou get so drunk that thou dost not know how to open a door? It’s an evil time that I spend with thee. Here we are with all these little children, and yet thou dost go away and drink.”––Then the wife opened the door, and the husband walked into the hut and said, “Good health to thee, dear wife!”––But the wife cried, “Why dost thou bring that ram inside the hut, can’t it stay outside the walls?”––“Wife, wife!” said the man, “speak, but don’t screech. Now we shall have all manner of good things, and the children will have a fine time of it.”––“What!” said the wife, “what good can we get from that wretched ram? Where shall we get the money to find food for it? Why, we’ve nothing to eat ourselves, and thou dost saddle us with a ram besides. Stuff and nonsense! I say.”––“Silence, wife,” replied the husband; “that ram is not like other rams, I tell thee.”––“What sort is it, then?” asked his wife.––“Don’t ask questions, but spread a cloth on the floor and keep thine eyes open.”––“Why spread a cloth?” asked the wife.––“Why?” shrieked the man in a rage; “do what I tell thee, and hold thy tongue.”––But the wife said, “Alas, alas! I have an evil time of it. Thou dost nothing at all but go away and drink, and then thou comest home and dost talk nonsense, and bringest sacks and rams with thee, and knockest down our little hut.”––At this the husband could control his rage no longer, but shrieked at the ram, “Little ram, little ram, scatter money!”––But the ram only stood there and stared at him. Then he cried again, “Little ram, little ram, scatter money!”––But the ram stood there stock-still and did nothing. Then the man in his anger caught up a piece of wood and struck the ram on the head, but the poor ram only uttered a feeble baa! and fell to the earth dead.
The man was now very much offended and said, “I’ll go to the Wind again, and I’ll tell him what a fool he has made of me.” Then he took up his hat and went, leaving everything behind him. And the poor wife put everything to rights, and reproached and railed at her husband.
So the man came to the Wind for the third time and said, “Wilt thou tell me, please, if thou art really the Wind or no?”––“What’s the matter with thee?” asked the Wind.––“I’ll tell thee what’s the matter,” said the man; “why hast thou laughed at and mocked me and made such a fool of me?”––“I laugh at thee!” thundered the old father as he lay there on the floor and turned round on the other ear; “why didst thou not hold fast what I gave thee? Why didst thou not listen to me when I told thee not to go into the tavern, eh?”––“What tavern dost thou mean?” asked the man proudly; “as for the sack and the ram thou didst give me, they only did me a mischief; give me something else.”––“What’s the use of giving thee anything?” said the Wind; “thou wilt only take it to the tavern. Out of the drum, my twelve henchmen!” cried the Wind, “and just give this accursed drunkard a good lesson that he may keep his throat dry and listen a little more to old people!”––Immediately twelve henchmen leaped out of his drum and began giving the man a sound thrashing. Then the man saw that it was no joke and begged for mercy. “Dear old father Wind,” cried he, “be merciful, and let me get off alive. I’ll not come to thee again though I should have to wait till the Judgment Day, and I’ll do all thy behests.”––“Into the drum, my henchmen!” cried the Wind.––“And now, O man!” said the Wind, “thou mayst have this drum with the twelve henchmen, and go to those accursed Jews, and if they will not give thee back thy sack and thy ram, thou wilt know what to say.”
So the man thanked the Wind for his good advice, and went on his way. He came to the inn, and when the Jews saw that he brought nothing with him they said, “Hearken, O man! don’t come here, for we have no brandy.”––“What do I want with your brandy?” cried the man in a rage.––“Then for what hast thou come hither?”––“I have come for my own.”––“Thy own,” said the Jews; “what dost thou mean?”––“What do I mean?” roared the man; “why, my sack and my ram, which you must give up to me.”––“What ram? What sack?” said the Jews; “why, thou didst take them away from here thyself.”––“Yes, but you changed them,” said the man.––“What dost thou mean by changed?” whined the Jews; “we will go before the magistrate, and thou shalt hear from us about this.”––“You will have an evil time of it if you go before the magistrate,” said the man; “but at any rate, give me back my own.” And he sat down upon a bench. Then the Jews caught him by the shoulders to cast him out and cried, “Be off, thou rascal! Does any one know where this man comes from? No doubt he is an evil-doer.” The man could not stand this, so he cried, “Out of the drum, my henchmen! and give the accursed Jews a sound drubbing, that they may know better than to take in honest folk!” and immediately the twelve henchmen leaped out of the drum and began thwacking the Jews finely.––“Oh, oh!” roared the Jews; “oh, dear, darling, good man, we’ll give thee whatever thou dost want, only leave off beating us! Let us live a bit longer in the world, and we will give thee back everything.”––“Good!” said the man, “and another time you’ll know better than to deceive people.” Then he cried, “Into the drum, my henchmen!” and the henchmen disappeared, leaving the Jews more dead than alive. Then they gave the man his sack and his ram, and he went home, but it was a long, long time before the Jews forgot those henchmen.
So the man went home, and his wife and children saw him coming from afar. “Daddy is coming home now with a sack and a ram!” said she; “what shall we do? We shall have a bad time of it, we shall have nothing left at all. God defend us poor wretches! Go and hide everything, children.” So the children hastened away, but the husband came to the door and said, “Open the door!”––“Open the door thyself,” replied the wife.––Again the husband bade her open the door, but she paid no heed to him. The man was astonished. This was carrying a joke too far, so he cried to his henchmen, “Henchmen, henchmen! out of the drum, and teach my wife to respect her husband!” Then the henchmen leaped out of the drum, laid the good wife by the heels, and began to give her a sound drubbing. “Oh, my dear, darling husband!” shrieked the wife, “never to the end of my days will I be sulky with thee again. I’ll do whatever thou tellest me, only leave off beating me.”––“Then I have taught thee sense, eh?” said the man.––“Oh, yes, yes, good husband!” cried she. Then the man said: “Henchmen, henchmen! into the drum!” and the henchmen leaped into it again, leaving the poor wife more dead than alive.
Then the husband said to her, “Wife, spread a cloth upon the floor.” The wife scudded about as nimbly as a fly, and spread a cloth out on the floor without a word. Then the husband said, “Little ram, little ram, scatter money!” And the little ram scattered money till there were piles and piles of it. “Pick it up, my children,” said the man, “and thou too, wife, take what thou wilt!”––And they didn’t wait to be asked twice. Then the man hung up his sack on a peg and said, “Sack, sack, meat and drink!” Then he caught hold of it and shook it, and immediately the table was as full as it could hold with all manner of victuals and drink. “Sit down, my children, and thou too, dear wife, and eat thy fill. Thank God, we shall now have no lack of food, and shall not have to work for it either.”
So the man and his wife were very happy together, and were never tired of thanking the Wind. They had not had the sack and the ram very long when they grew very rich, and then the husband said to the wife, “I tell thee what, wife!”––“What?” said she.––“Let us invite my brother to come and see us.”––“Very good,” she replied; “invite him, but dost thou think he’ll come?”––“Why shouldn’t he?” asked her husband. “Now, thank God, we have everything we want. He wouldn’t come to us when we were poor and he was rich, because then he was ashamed to say that I was his brother, but now even he hasn’t got so much as we have.”
So they made ready, and the man went to invite his brother. The poor man came to his rich brother and said, “Hail to thee, brother; God help thee!”––Now the rich brother was threshing wheat on his threshing-floor, and, raising his head, was surprised to see his brother there, and said to him haughtily, “I thank thee. Hail to thee also! Sit down, my brother, and tell us why thou hast come hither.”––“Thanks, my brother, I do not want to sit down. I have come hither to invite thee to us, thee and thy wife.”––“Wherefore?” asked the rich brother.––The poor man said, “My wife prays thee, and I pray thee also, to come and dine with us of thy courtesy.”––“Good!” replied the rich brother, smiling secretly. “I will come whatever thy dinner may be.”
So the rich man went with his wife to the poor man, and already from afar they perceived that the poor man had grown rich. And the poor man rejoiced greatly when he saw his rich brother in his house. And his tongue was loosened, and he began to show him everything, whatsoever he possessed. The rich man was amazed that things were going so well with his brother, and asked him how he had managed to get on so. But the poor man answered, “Don’t ask me, brother. I have more to show thee yet.” Then he took him to his copper money, and said, “There are my oats, brother!” Then he took and showed him his silver money, and said, “That’s the sort of barley I thresh on my threshing-floor!” And, last of all, he took him to his gold money, and said, “There, my dear brother, is the best wheat I’ve got.”––Then the rich brother shook his head, not once nor twice, and marvelled at the sight of so many good things, and he said, “Wherever didst thou pick up all this, my brother?”––“Oh! I’ve more than that to show thee yet. Just be so good as to sit down on that chair, and I’ll show and tell thee everything.”
Then they sat them down, and the poor man hung up his sack upon a peg. “Sack, sack, meat and drink!” he cried, and immediately the table was covered with all manner of dishes. So they ate and ate, till they were full up to the ears. When they had eaten and drunken their fill, the poor man called to his son to bring the little ram into the hut. So the lad brought in the ram, and the rich brother wondered what they were going to do with it. Then the poor man said, “Little ram, scatter money!” And the little ram scattered money, till there were piles and piles of it on the floor. “Pick it up!” said the poor man to the rich man and his wife. So they picked it up, and the rich brother and his wife marvelled, and the brother said, “Thou hast a very nice piece of goods there, brother. If I had only something like that I should lack nothing;” then, after thinking a long time, he said, “Sell it to me, my brother.”––“No,” said the poor man, “I will not sell it.”––After a little time, however, the rich brother said again, “Come now! I’ll give thee for it six yoke of oxen, and a plough, and a harrow, and a hay-fork, and I’ll give thee besides, lots of corn to sow, thus thou wilt have plenty, but give me the ram and the sack.” So at last they exchanged. The rich man took the sack and the ram, and the poor man took the oxen and went out to the plough.
Then the poor brother went out ploughing all day, but he neither watered his oxen nor gave them anything to eat. And next day the poor brother again went out to his oxen, but found them rolling on their sides on the ground. He began to pull and tug at them, but they didn’t get up. Then he began to beat them with a stick, but they uttered not a sound. The man was surprised to find them fit for nothing, and off he ran to his brother, not forgetting to take with him his drum with the henchmen.
When the poor brother came to the rich brother’s, he lost no time in crossing his threshold, and said, “Hail, my brother!”––“Good health to thee also!” replied the rich man, “why hast thou come hither? Has thy plough broken, or thy oxen failed thee? Perchance thou hast watered them with foul water, so that their blood is stagnant, and their flesh inflamed?”––“The murrain take ’em if I know thy meaning!” cried the poor brother. “All that I know is that I thwacked ’em till my arms ached, and they wouldn’t stir, and not a single grunt did they give; till I was so angry that I spat at them, and came to tell thee. Give me back my sack and my ram, I say, and take back thy oxen, for they won’t listen to me!”––“What! take them back!” roared the rich brother. “Dost think I only made the exchange for a single day? No, I gave them to thee once and for all, and now thou wouldst rip the whole thing up like a goat at the fair. I have no doubt thou hast neither watered them nor fed them, and that is why they won’t stand up.”––“I didn’t know,” said the poor man, “that oxen needed water and food.”––“Didn’t know!” screeched the rich man, in a mighty rage, and taking the poor brother by the hand, he led him away from the hut. “Go away,” said he, “and never come back here again, or I’ll have thee hanged on a gallows!”––“Ah! what a big gentleman we are!” said the poor brother; “just thou give me back my own, and then I will go away.”––“Thou hadst better not stop here,” said the rich brother; “come, stir thy stumps, thou pagan! Go home ere I beat thee!”––“Don’t say that,” replied the poor man, “but give me back my ram and my sack, and then I will go.”––At this the rich brother quite lost his temper, and cried to his wife and children, “Why do you stand staring like that? Can’t you come and help me to pitch this insolent rogue out of the house?” This, however, was something beyond a joke, so the poor brother called to his henchmen, “Henchmen, henchmen! out of the drum, and give this brother of mine and his wife a sound drubbing, that they may think twice about it another time before they pitch a poor brother out of their hut!” Then the henchmen leaped out of the drum, and laid hold of the rich brother and his wife, and trounced them soundly, until the rich brother yelled with all his might, “Oh, oh! my own true brother, take what thou wilt, only let me off alive!” whereupon the poor brother cried to his henchmen, “Henchmen, henchmen! into the drum!” and the henchmen disappeared immediately.
Then the poor brother took his ram and his sack, and set off home with them. And they lived happily ever after, and grew richer and richer. They sowed neither wheat nor barley, and yet they had lots and lots to eat. And I was there, and drank mead and beer. What my mouth couldn’t hold ran down my beard. For you, there’s a kazka, but there be fat hearth-cakes for me the asker. And if I have aught to eat, thou shalt share the treat.
DakhaBrakha – Alambari
“The soul is healed by being with children.” — Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Russian novelist and philosopher
I know nothing, except the fact of my ignorance. – Diogenes
On The Menu:
Kristi Stassinopoulou – Beehives
Prometheus & Pandora
Kristi Stassinopoulou -The Joy Of Life
My latest project. I put together this collage over the last few weeks. While working on it I realized that the process had opened up a new way to express my thoughts around arts and creativity.
You will find below the picture links to the other parts of this concept.
I like finding novel approaches that gets my mind working and I’m very excited to present Promethean to you and I hope you like the expanse of this project
The Print of “Promethean” is available here: “Promethean”
____________________________ The Poetry Of Anacreon There is a theme, ancient as it is that flows through all. When I read Anacreon, I hear it’s echoes through the chambers of time..
The Thracian Filly
Ah tell me why you turn and fly,
My little Thracian filly shy?
Why turn askance
That cruel glance,
And think that such a dunce am I?
O I am blest with ample wit
To fix the bridle and the bit,
And make thee bend
In harness all the course of it.
But now ’tis yet the meadow free
And frisking it with merry glee;
The master yet
Has not been met
To mount the car and manage thee.
HORNS to bulls wise Nature lends;
Horses she with hoofs defends;
Hares with nimble feet relieves;
Dreadful teeth to lions gives;
Fishes learn through streams to slide;
Birds through yielding air to glide;
Men to courage she supplies;
But to women these denies.
What then give she? Beauty, this
Both their arms and armor is:
She, that can this weapon use,
Fire and sword with ease subdues.
_____ A Lover’s Sigh
The Phrygian rock that braves the storm
Was once a weeping matron’s form;
And Procne, hapless, frantic maid,
Is now a swallow in the shade.
Oh that a mirror’s form were mine,
To sparkle with that smile divine;
And like my heart I then should be,
Reflecting thee, and only thee!
Or could I be the robe which holds
That graceful form within its folds;
Or, turned into a fountain, lave
Thy beauties in my circling wave;
Or, better still, the zone that lies
Warm to thy breast, and feels its sighs!
Or like those envious pearls that show
So faintly round that neck of snow!
Yes, I would be a happy gem,
Like them to hang, to fade like them.
What more would thy Anacreon be?
Oh, anything that touches thee,
Nay, sandals for those airy feet–
Thus to be pressed by thee were sweet!
The thirsty earth soaks up the rain,
And drinks, and gapes for drink again,
The plants suck in the earth, and are
With constant drinking fresh and fair;
The sea itself (which one would think
Should have but little need of drink)
Drinks twice ten thousand rivers up,
So filled that they o’erflow the cup.
The busy Sun (and one would guess
By ‘s drunken fiery face no less)
Drinks up the sea, and, when he’s done,
The Moon and Stars drink up the Sun:
They drink and dance by their own light;
They drink and revel all the night.
Nothing in nature’s sober found,
But an eternal health goes round.
Fill up the bowl then, fill it high,
Fill all the glasses there; for why
Should every creature drink but I?
Why, man of morals, tell me why?
Prometheus Brings Fire to Mankind -Heinrich Friedrich Fuger
PROMETHEUS AND PANDORA
THE creation of the world is a problem naturally fitted to excite the liveliest interest of man, its inhabitant. The ancient pagans, not having the information on the subject which we derive from the pages of Scripture, had their own way of telling the story, which is as follows:
Before earth and sea and heaven were created, all things were one aspect, to which we give the name of Chaos- a confused and shapeless mass, nothing but dead weight, in which, however, slumbered the seeds of things. Earth, sea, and air were all mixed up together; so the earth was not solid, the sea was not fluid, and the air was not transparent. God and Nature at last interposed, and put an end to this discord, separating earth from sea, and heaven from both. The fiery part, being the lightest, sprang up, and formed the skies; the air was next in weight and place. The earth, being heavier, sank below; and the water took the lowest place, and buoyed up the earth.
Here some god- it is not known which- gave his good offices in arranging and disposing the earth. He appointed rivers and bays their places, raised mountains, scooped out valleys, distributed woods, fountains, fertile fields. and stony plains. The air being cleared, the stars began to appear, fishes took possession of the sea, birds of the air, and four-footed beasts of the land.
But a nobler animal was wanted, and Man was made. It is not known whether the creator made him of divine materials, or whether in the earth, so lately separated from heaven, there lurked still some heavenly seeds. Prometheus took some of this earth, and kneading it up with water, made man in the image of the gods. He gave him an upright stature, so that while all other animals turn their faces downward, and look to the earth, he raises his to heaven, and gazes on the stars.
Prometheus was one of the Titans, a gigantic race, who inhabited the earth before the creation of man. To him and his brother Epimetheus was committed the office of making man, and providing him and all other animals with the faculties necessary for their preservation. Epimetheus undertook to do this, and Prometheus was to overlook his work, when it was done. Epimetheus accordingly proceeded to bestow upon the different animals the various gifts of courage, strength, swiftness, sagacity; wings to one, claws to another, a shelly covering to a third, etc. But when man came to be provided for, who was to be superior to all other animals, Epimetheus had been so prodigal of his resources that he had nothing left to bestow upon him. In his perplexity he resorted to his brother Prometheus, who, with the aid of Minerva, went up to heaven, and lighted his torch at the chariot of the sun. and brought down fire to man. With this gift man was more than a match for all other animals. It enabled him to make weapons wherewith to subdue them; tools with which to cultivate the earth; to warm his dwelling, so as to be comparatively independent of climate; and finally, to introduce the arts and to coin money, the means of trade and commerce.
Woman was not yet made. The story (absurd enough!) is that Jupiter made her, and sent her to Prometheus and his brother, to punish them for their presumption in stealing fire from heaven; and man, for accepting the gift. The first woman was named Pandora. She was made in heaven, every god contributing something to perfect her. Venus gave her beauty, Mercury persuasion, Apollo music, etc. Thus equipped, she was conveyed to earth, and presented to Epimetheus, who gladly accepted her, though cautioned by his brother to beware of Jupiter and his gifts. Epimetheus had in his house a jar, in which were kept certain noxious articles for which, in fitting man for his new abode, he had had no occasion. Pandora was seized with an eager curiosity to know what this jar contained; and one day she slipped off the cover and looked in. Forthwith there escaped a multitude of plagues for hapless man,- such as gout, rheumatism, and colic for his body, and envy, spite, and revenge for his mind,- and scattered themselves far and wide. Pandora hastened to replace the lid! but, alas! the whole contents of the jar had escaped, one thing only excepted, which lay at the bottom, and that was hope. So we see at this day, whatever evils are abroad, hope never entirely leaves us; and while we have that, no amount of other ills can make us completely wretched.
Another story is that Pandora was sent in good faith, by Jupiter, to bless man; that she was furnished with a box containing her marriage presents, into which every god had put some blessing, She opened the box incautiously, and the blessings all escaped, hope only excepted. This story seems more probable than the former; for how could hope, so precious a jewel as it is, have been kept in a jar full of all manner of evils, as in the former statement?
The world being thus furnished with inhabitants, the first age was an age of innocence and happiness, called the Golden Age. Truth and right prevailed, though not enforced by law, nor was there any magistrate to threaten or punish. The forest had not yet been robbed of its trees to furnish timbers for vessels, nor had men built fortifications round their towns. There were no such things as swords, spears, or helmets. The earth brought forth all things necessary for man, without his labour in ploughing or sowing, Perpetual spring reigned, flowers sprang up without seed, the rivers flowed with milk and wine, and yellow honey distilled from the oaks.
Then succeeded the Silver Age, inferior to the golden, but better than that of brass. Jupiter shortened the spring,and divided the year into seasons. Then, first, men had to endure the extremes of heat and cold, and houses became necessary. Caves were the first dwellings, and leafy coverts of the woods, and huts woven of twigs. Crops would no longer grow without planting. The farmer was obliged to sow the seed, and the toiling ox to draw the plough.
Next came the Brazen Age, more savage of temper, and readier to the strife of arms, yet not altogether wicked. The hardest and worst was the Iron Age. Crime burst in like a flood; modesty, truth, and honour fled. In their places came fraud and cunning, violence, and the wicked love of gain. Then seamen spread sails to the wind, and the trees were torn from the mountains to serve for keels to ships, and vex the face of the ocean. The earth, which till now had been cultivated in common, began to be divided off into possessions. Men were not satisfied with what the surface produced, but must dig into its bowels, and draw forth from thence the ores of metals. Mischievous iron, and more mischievous gold, were produced. War sprang up, using both as weapons; the guest was not safe in his friend’s house; and sons-in-law and fathers-in-law, brothers and sisters, husbands and wives, could not trust one another. Sons wished their fathers dead, that they might come to the inheritance; family love lay prostrate. The earth was wet with slaughter, and the gods abandoned it, one by one, till Astraea* alone was left, and finally she also took her departure.
* The goddess of innocence and purity. After leaving earth, she was placed among the stars, where she became the constellation Virgo- the Virgin. Themis (Justice) was the mother of Astraea. She is represented as holding aloft a pair of scales, in which she weighs the claims of opposing parties.
It was a favourite idea of the old poets that these goddesses would one day return, and bring back the Golden Age. Even in a Christian hymn, the “Messiah” of Pope, this idea occurs:
“All crimes shall cease, and ancient fraud shall fail,
Returning Justice lift aloft her scale,
Peace o’er the world her olive wand extend,
And white-robed Innocence from heaven descend.”
See, also, Milton’s “Hymn on the Nativity,” stanzas xiv. and xv.
Jupiter, seeing this state of things, burned with anger. He summoned the gods to council. They obeyed the call, and took the road to the palace of heaven. The road, which any one may see in a clear night, stretches across the face of the sky, and is called the Milky Way. Along the road stand the palaces of the illustrious gods; the common people of the skies live apart, on either side. Jupiter addressed the assembly. He set forth the frightful condition of things on the earth, and closed by announcing his intention to destroy the whole of its inhabitants, and provide a new race, unlike the first, who would be more worthy of life, and much better worshippers of the gods. So saying he took a thunderbolt, and was about to launch it at the world, and destroy it by burning; but recollecting the danger that such a conflagration might set heaven itself on fire, he changed his plan, and resolved to drown it. The north wind, which scatters the clouds, was chained up; the south was sent out, and soon covered all the face of heaven with a cloak of pitchy darkness. The clouds, driven together, resound with a crash; torrents of rain fall; the crops are laid low; the year’s labour of the husbandman perishes in an hour. Jupiter, not satisfied with his own waters, calls on his brother Neptune to aid him with his. He lets loose the rivers, and pours them over the land. At the same time, he heaves the land with an earthquake, and brings in the reflux of the ocean over the shores. Flocks, herds, men, and houses are swept away, and temples, with their sacred enclosures, profaned. If any edifice remained standing, it was overwhelmed, and its turrets lay hid beneath the waves. Now all was sea, sea without shore. Here and there an individual remained on a projecting hilltop, and a few, in boats, pulled the oar where they had lately driven the plough. The fishes swim among the tree-tops; the anchor is let down into a garden. Where the graceful lambs played but now. unwieldy sea calves gambol. The wolf swims among the sheep, the yellow lions and tigers struggle in the water. The strength of the wild boar serves him not, nor his swiftness the stag. The birds fall with weary win, into the water, having found no land for a resting-place. Those living beings whom the water spared fell a prey to hunger.
Parnassus alone, of all the mountains, overtopped the waves; and there Deucalion, and his wife Pyrrha, of the race of Prometheus, found refuge- he a just man, and she a faithful worshipper of the gods. Jupiter, when he saw none left alive but this pair, and remembered their harmless lives and pious demeanour, ordered the north winds to drive away the clouds, and disclose the skies to earth, and earth to the skies. Neptune also directed Triton to blow on his shell, and sound a retreat to the waters. The waters obeyed, and the sea returned to its shores, and the rivers to their channels. Then Deucalion thus addressed Pyrrha: “O wife, only surviving woman, joined to me first by the ties of kindred and marriage, and now by a common danger, would that we possessed the power of our ancestor Prometheus, and could renew the race as he at first made it! But as we cannot, let us seek yonder temple, and inquire of the gods what remains for us to do.” They entered the temple, deformed as it was with slime, and approached the altar, where no fire burned. There they fell prostrate on the earth, and prayed the goddess to inform them how they might retrieve their miserable affairs. The oracle answered, “Depart from the temple with head veiled and garments unbound, and cast behind you the bones of your mother.” They heard the words with astonishment. Pyrrha first broke silence: “We cannot obey; we dare not profane the remains of our parents.” They sought the thickest shades of the wood, and revolved the oracle in their minds. At length Deucalion spoke: “Either my sagacity deceives me, or the command is one we may obey without impiety. The earth is the great parent of all; the stones are her bones; these we may cast behind us; and I think this is what the oracle means. At least, it will do no harm to try.” They veiled their faces, unbound their garments, and picked up stones, and cast them behind them. The stones (wonderful to relate) began to grow soft, and assume shape. By degrees, they put on a rude resemblance to the human form, like a block half finished in the hands of the sculptor. The moisture and slime that were about them became flesh; the stony part became bones; the veins remained veins, retaining their name, only changing their use. Those thrown by the hand of the man became men, and those by the woman became women. It was a hard race, and well adapted to labour, as we find ourselves to be at this day, giving plain indications of our origin.
The comparison of Eve to Pandora is too obvious to have escaped Milton, who introduces it in Book IV. of “Paradise Lost”:
“More lovely than Pandora, whom the gods
Endowed with all their gifts; and O, too like
In sad event, when to the unwiser son
Of Japhet brought by Hermes, she insnared
Mankind with her fair looks, to be avenged
On him who had stole Jove’s authentic fire.”
Prometheus and Epimetheus were sons of Iapetus, which Milton changes to Japhet.
Prometheus has been a favourite subject with the poets. He is represented as the friend of mankind, who interposed in their behalf when Jove was incensed against them, and who taught them civilization and the arts. But as, in so doing, he transgressed the will of Jupiter, he drew down on himself the anger of the ruler of gods and men. Jupiter had him chained to a rock on Mount Caucasus, where a vulture preyed on his liver, which was renewed as fast as devoured. This state of torment might have been brought to an end at any time by Prometheus, if he had been willing, to submit to his oppressor; for he possessed a secret which involved the stability of Jove’s throne, and if he would have revealed it, he might have been at once taken into favour. But that he disdained to do. He has therefore become the symbol of magnanimous endurance of unmerited suffering, and strength of will resisting oppression.
Byron and Shelley have both treated this theme. The following are Byron’s lines:
“Titan! to whose immortal eyes
The sufferings of mortality,
Seen in their sad reality,
Were not as things that gods despise;
What was thy pity’s recompense?
A silent suffering, and intense;
The rock, the vulture, and the chain;
All that the proud can feel of pain;
The agony they do not show;
The suffocating sense of woe.
“Thy godlike crime was to be kind;
To render with thy precepts less
The sum of human wretchedness,
And strengthen man with his own mind.
And, baffled as thou wert from high,
Still, in thy patient energy
In the endurance and repulse
Of thine impenetrable spirit,
Which earth and heaven could not convulse,
A mighty lesson we inherit.”
Byron also employs the same allusion, in his “Ode to Napoleon Bonaparte”:
“Or, like the thief of fire from heaven,
Wilt thou withstand the shock?
And share with him- the unforgiven-
His vulture and his rock?”
“Against stupidity we have no defense. Neither protests nor force can touch it. Reasoning is of no use. Facts that contradict personal prejudices can simply be disbelieved — indeed, the fool can counter by criticizing them, and if they are undeniable, they can just be pushed aside as trivial exceptions. So the fool, as distinct from the scoundrel, is completely self-satisfied. In fact, they can easily become dangerous, as it does not take much to make them aggressive. For that reason, greater caution is called for than with a malicious one. Never again will we try to persuade the stupid person with reasons, for it is senseless and dangerous.” — Dietrich Bonhoeffer
________________ Kristi Stassinopoulou -The Joy Of Life
“What is beautiful is good, and who is good will soon be beautiful.”
The Great Round… Leaving The Year on a high note.
So here we are at the turning of the Julian calendar year… what a blur the last 12 months has been. I was going to hash over the doings of the world, but frankly, that serves no one, and it has been done to death. I would rather contemplate more of the esoteric features, and what seems to be hints of the future winding its way towards us all.
I spent a lot of time meditating this last year, especially in the summer months, where we sat out in the back garden in all of its glory (and trauma from the heat this past summer.) During those sittings I had a remarkable moment of gnosis. We were sitting under the Dogwood Tree, just out the back door. It was early evening, perhaps 6:00pm. We (Mary and I) were sharing the evening glass together. I was slowly breathing in and out, and then I stepped through what I call a mental membrane. Life became extremely vibrant. All of my concentration centered on my breathing. I realized that I was breathing in billions of lifeforms, each expressing consciousness in its own way. All that I perceived inwardly and outwardly was life in all of its exuberant abundance and variation. The air, land, trees, water were teaming with awareness – consciousness. I cannot put it into words properly it seems… Yet there was a glory in the recognition of what was eternally present. Time, stopped. I became unaware of breathing. The world brightened. I sat in what is best described as that infinite moment in between.
After a bit, I realized I was breathing again, and all was returning to normal. I gave thanks. It was one of those events that reassures, even in the midst of such turmoil.
I am at the Optometrist, early November, late October. “Well, it looks like you have cataracts”. The understatement of the year. Sitting in the back garden this summer everything in the distance was double vision, driving at night a nightmare. Yet, with that simple statement, I realized (partially) what was dragging down my time working on the Invisible College, and other projects. It started with losing focus when looking at screens. Blur. Combined with the Covid Shuffle, it was a potent mix of dithering, drifting, lack of focus. I have been near sighted for years, but this is something else. Yet, there is hope on the horizon, with projected surgery.
After wrestling with Barnes & Noble Interface for 3 weeks, I finally get a reply to my query. Somehow, The Invisible Colelge #11 “Alchemy” had gone down the rabbit hole. This was most disheartening. I was looking for relief from publishing with Amazon. Amazon, who doesn’t actually send money for issues sold. Amazon, whose lack of transparency borders on the Machiavellian… Moving to a publisher who has actual physical stores, bookstores to sell at. In that the Invisible College Review/Magazine doesn’t fit in any readymade category has made landing a traditional publishing deal almost impossible. This has been the territory that we seem to always inhabit: Just over the “Horizon Line”. The undefined, the outer territories, the scary place.
Finally, Relief. An actual human reaches out. Publication goes forward.
_____________ Current Projects Launched:
Contributors: Gwyllm Llwydd Publisher, Editor & Illustrator of The Invisible College.
Perhaps one of the oldest arts that could be considered Alchemical would-be ceramics. We are featuring the ceramics of Andrea O’Reilly: “Art Of The Four Elements”… in this ancient field, which is a first for The Invisible College. P.D Newman returns to the Invisible College with an excerpt from his new book, “Angels in Vermillion”, The Philosophers Stone from Dee to DMT. It makes for a great read.
We are very pleased to present the poetry of Whit Griffin, an excerpt from his new book, “Uncanny Resonance”. Whit’s poetry is some of the very best of our current poets in the US.
We are happy to present “Psychognosis” along with the beautiful art of the author Daniel Mirante. His art work, his teaching and his understanding of the Alchemical process is nicely laid out in his article.
We are pleased to present the art of Madeline von Foerster in “Alchemy Expressed Through Surrealism” . Amazing artwork, beautifully surreal; executed in the oil and egg tempera mische technique developed by the Flemish Masters.
We have an interview with Sasha Chaitow whose new book “Atalanta Unveiled” is causing quite a stir in alchemical circles in Europe and the USA. This is quite a wide ranging interview in only the way that Ronnie Pontiac can conduct an interview. Laurence Caruana shares both his art and his journey through alchemy with us in his article “Speculum Alchemae”. The details of his Alchemical journey from the 1990’s in Montreal, to his life now in Europe. Laurence’s art is a bonus to this article, he is well known in the Visionary School, and in fact one of the founders of The Academy of Visionary Art in Vienna, now residing in France. Holly Van Fleet returns to this edition with more of her concise writings and “Alchemical Musings”.
You can purchase the new edition either at InvisibleCollegePublishing, or at our new publisher, Barne’s & Noble. Here is a Sweetener for purchasing from us: For a Limited Time, when you purchase a copy of #11 “Alchemy”You also get a signed print of“Her Alchemical Dream”: Invisible College 11# With Print
Or, you can purchase it from: Barnes & NobleBarnes & Noble Advantage: Earlier Delivery
You can still get your Gwyllm Art Caledar 2022 at Lulu.Com! Gwyllm Art Calendar 2022
Enough. on to Music, some Linkage, Sufism,,,
_____________ On The Menu:
Man Kunto Maula
It’s Beginning To Happen Everywhere
Shams of Tabriz: The 40 Rules of Love
________________ Shams of Tabriz: The 40 Rules of Love
(Excerpts from the book: The Forty Rules of Love by Elif Shafak)
How we see God is a direct reflection of how we see ourselves. If God brings to mind mostly fear and blame, it means there is too much fear and blame welled inside us. If we see God as full of love and compassion, so are we.
The path to the Truth is a labour of the heart, not of the head. Make your heart your primary guide! Not your mind. Meet, challenge and ultimately prevail over your nafs with your heart. Knowing your ego will lead you to the knowledge of God.
You can study God through everything and everyone in the universe, because God is not confined in a mosque, synagogue or church. But if you are still in need of knowing where exactly His abode is, there is only one place to look for him: in the heart of a true lover.
Intellect and love are made of different materials. Intellect ties people in knots and risks nothing, but love dissolves all tangles and risks everything. Intellect is always cautious and advices, ‘Beware too much ecstasy’, whereas love says, ‘Oh, never mind! Take the plunge!’ Intellect does not easily break down, whereas love can effortlessly reduce itself to rubble. But treasures are hidden among ruins. A broken heart hides treasures.
Most of problems of the world stem from linguistic mistakes and simple misunderstanding. Don’t ever take words at face value. When you step into the zone of love, language, as we know it becomes obsolete. That which cannot be put into words can only be grasped through silence.
Loneliness and solitude are two different things. When you are lonely, it is easy to delude yourself into believing that you are on the right path. Solitude is better for us, as it means being alone without feeling lonely. But eventually it is the best to find a person who will be your mirror. Remember only in another person’s heart can you truly see yourself and the presence of God within you.
Whatever happens in your life, no matter how troubling things might seem, do not enter the neighbourhood of despair. Even when all doors remain closed, God will open up a new path only for you. Be thankful! It is easy to be thankful when all is well. A Sufi is thankful not only for what he has been given but also for all that he has been denied.
Patience does not mean to passively endure. It means to look at the end of a process. What does patience mean? It means to look at the thorn and see the rose, to look at the night and see the dawn. Impatience means to be shortsighted as to not be able to see the outcome. The lovers of God never run out of patience, for they know that time is needed for the crescent moon to become full.
East, west, south, or north makes little difference. No matter what your destination, just be sure to make every journey a journey within. If you travel within, you’ll travel the whole wide world and beyond.
The midwife knows that when there is no pain, the way for the baby cannot be opened and the mother cannot give birth. Likewise, for a new self to be born, hardship is necessary. Just as clay needs to go through intense heat to become strong, Love can only be perfected in pain.
The quest for love changes user. There is no seeker among those who search for love who has not matured on the way. The moment you start looking for love, you start to change within and without.
There are more fake gurus and false teachers in this world than the number of stars in the visible universe. Don’t confuse power-driven, self-centered people with true mentors. A genuine spiritual master will not direct your attention to himself or herself and will not expect absolute obedience or utter admiration from you, but instead will help you to appreciate and admire your inner self. True mentors are as transparent as glass. They let the light of God pass through them.
Try not to resist the changes, which come your way. Instead let life live through you. And do not worry that your life is turning upside down. How do you know that the side you are used to is better than the one to come?
God is busy with the completion of your work, both outwardly and inwardly. He is fully occupied with you. Every human being is a work in progress that is slowly but inexorably moving toward perfection. We are each an unfinished work of art both waiting and striving to be completed. God deals with each of us separately because humanity is fine art of skilled penmanship where every single dot is equally important for the entire picture.
It’s easy to love a perfect God, unblemished and infallible that He is. What is far more difficult is to love fellow human being with all their imperfections and defects. Remember, one can only know what one is capable of loving. There is no wisdom without love. Unless we learn to love God’s creation, we can neither truly love nor truly know God.
Real faith is the one inside. The rest simply washes off. There is only one type of dirt that cannot be cleansed with pure water, and that is the stain of hatred and bigotry contaminating the soul. You can purify your body through abstinence and fasting, but only love will purify your heart.
The whole universe is contained within a single human being-you. Everything that you see around, including the things that you might not be fond of and even the people you despise or abhor, is present within you in varying degrees. Therefore, do not look for Sheitan outside yourself either. The devil is not an extraordinary force that attacks from without. It is an ordinary voice within. If you set to know yourself fully, facing with honesty and hardness.
If you want to change the ways others treat you, you should first change the way you treat yourself, fully and sincerely, there is no way you can be loved. Once you achieve that stage, however, be thankful for every thorn that others might throw at you. It is a sign that you will soon be showered in roses.
Fret not where the road will take you. Instead concentrate on the first step. That is the hardest part and that is what you are responsible for. Once you take that step let everything do what it naturally does and the rest will follow. Don’t go with the flow. Be the flow.
We were all created in His image, and yet we were each created different and unique. No two people are alike. No hearts beat to the same rhythm. If God had wanted everyone to be the same, He would have made it so. Therefore, disrespecting differences and imposing your thoughts on others is an amount to disrespecting God’s holy scheme.
When a true lover of God goes into a tavern, the tavern becomes his chamber of prayer, but when a wine bibber goes into the same chamber, it becomes his tavern. In everything we do, it is our hearts that make the difference, not our outer appearance. Sufis do not judge other people on how they look or who they are. When a Sufi stares at someone, he keeps both eyes closed instead opens a third eye – the eye that sees the inner realm.
Life is a temporary loan and this world is nothing but a sketchy imitation of Reality. Only children would mistake a toy for the real thing. And yet human beings either become infatuated with the toy or disrespectfully break it and throw it aside. In this life stay away from all kinds of extremities, for they will destroy your inner balance. Sufis do not go to extremes. A Sufi always remains mild and moderate.
The human being has a unique place among God’s creation. “I breathed into him of My Spirit,” God says. Each and every one of us without exception is designed to be God’s delegate on earth. Ask yourself, just how often do you behave like a delegate, if you ever do so? Remember, it fells upon each of us to discover the divine spirit inside and live by it.
Hell is in the here and now. So is heaven. Quit worrying about hell or dreaming about heaven, as they are both present inside this very moment. Every time we fall in love, we ascend to heaven. Every time we hate, envy or fight someone we tumble straight into the fires of hell.
Each and every reader comprehends the Holy Qur’an on a different level of tandem with the depth of his understanding. There are four levels of insight. The first level is the outer meaning and it is the one that the majority of the people are content with. Next is the Batin – the inner level. Third, there is the inner of the inner. And the fourth level is so deep it cannot be put into words and is therefore bound to remain indescribable.
The universe is one being. Everything and everyone is interconnected through an invisible web of stories. Whether we are aware of it or not, we are all in a silent conversation. Do no harm. Practice compassion. And do not gossip behind anyone’s back – not even a seemingly innocent remark! The words that come out of our mouths do not vanish but are perpetually stored in infinite space and they will come back to us in due time. One man’s pain will hurt us all. One man’s joy will make everyone smile.
Whatever you speak, good or evil, will somehow come back to you. Therefore, if there is someone who harbours ill thoughts about you, saying similarly bad things about him will only make matters worse. You will be locked in a vicious circle of malevolent energy. Instead for forty days and nights say and think nice things about that person. Everything will be different at the end of 40 days, because you will be different inside.
The past is an interpretation. The future is on illusion. The world does not more through time as if it were a straight line, proceeding from the past to the future. Instead time moves through and within us, in endless spirals. Eternity does not mean infinite time, but simply timelessness. If you want to experience eternal illumination, put the past and the future out of your mind and remain within the present moment.
Destiny doesn’t mean that your life has been strictly predetermined. Therefore, to live everything to the fate and to not actively contribute to the music of the universe is a sign of sheer ignorance. The music of the universe is all pervading and it is composed on 40 different levels. Your destiny is the level where you play your tune. You might not change your instrument but how well to play is entirely in your hands.
The true Sufi is such that even when he is unjustly accused, attacked and condemned from all sides, he patiently endures, uttering not a sing bad word about any of his critics. A Sufi never apportions blame. How can there be opponents or rivals or even “others” when there is no “self” in the first place? How can there be anyone to blame when there is only One?
If you want to strengthen your faith, you will need to soften inside. For your faith to be rock solid, your heart needs to be as soft as a feather. Through an illness, accident, loss or fright, one way or another, we are all faced with incidents that teach us how to become less selfish and judgmental and more compassionate and generous. Yet some of us learn the lesson and manage to become milder, while some others end up becoming even harsher than before…
Nothing should stand between you and God. No imams, priests, rabbits or any other custodians of moral or religious leadership. Not spiritual masters and not even your faith. Believe in your values and your rules, but never lord them over others. If you keep breaking other people’s hearts, whatever religious duty you perform is no good. Stay away from all sorts of idolatry, for they will blur your vision. Let God and only God be your guide. Learn the Truth, my friend, but be careful not to make a fetish out of your truths.
While everyone in this world strives to get somewhere and become someone, only to leave it all behind after death, you aim for the supreme stage of nothingness. Live this life as light and empty as the number zero. We are no different from a pot. It is not the decorations outside but the emptiness inside that holds us straight. Just like that, it is not what we aspire to achieve but the consciousness of nothingness that keeps us going.
Submission does not mean being weak or passive. It leads to neither fatalism nor capitulation. Just the opposite. True power resides in submission a power that comes within. Those who submit to the divine essence of life will live in unperturbed tranquillity and peace even the whole wide world goes through turbulence after turbulence.
In this world, it is not similarities or regularities that take us a step forward, but blunt opposites. And all the opposites in the universe are present within each and every one of us. Therefore the believer needs to meet the unbeliever residing within. And the nonbeliever should get to know the silent faithful in him. Until the day one reaches the stage of Insane-I Kamil, the perfect human being, faith is a gradual process and one that necessitates its seeming opposite: disbelief.
This world is erected upon the principle of reciprocity. Neither a drop of kindness nor a speck of evil will remain unreciprocated. For not the plots, deceptions, or tricks of other people. If somebody is setting a trap, remember, so is God. He is the biggest plotter. Not even a leaf stirs outside God’s knowledge. Simply and fully believe in that. Whatever God does, He does it beautifully.
God is a meticulous dock maker. So precise is His order that everything on earth happens in its own time. Neither a minute late nor a minute early. And for everyone without exception, the clock works accurately. For each there is a time to love and a time to die.
It is never too late to ask yourself, “Am I ready to change the life I am living? Am I ready to change within?” Even if a single day in your life is the same as the day before, it surely is a pity. At every moment and with each new breath, one should be renewed and renewed again. There is only one-way to be born into a new life: to die before death.
While the part change, the whole always remains the same. For every thief who departs this world, a new one is born. And every descent person who passes away is replaced by a new one. In this way not only does nothing remain the same but also nothing ever really changes. For every Sufi who dies, another is born somewhere.
A life without love is of no account. Don’t ask yourself what kind of love you should seek, spiritual or material, divine or mundane, Eastern or Western. Divisions only lead to more divisions. Love has no labels, no definitions. It is what it is, pure and simple. Love is the water of life. And a lover is a soul of fire! The universe turns differently when fire loves water.
Let us celebrate the past year, with all of its challenges, and look forward with love to the New Year, for all of the possibilities ahead.
Be Strong, Love Fiercely, Practice Compassion. We will do this, properly.
“You will learn by reading, but you will understand with love.” ― Shams Tabrizi
It has been a month here at Caer Llwydd. I have been dealing with putting the Invisible College #11 to bed, working on the Substacks, and a new Gwyllm Art Calendar for 2022. There has been a frenzy of programming on Radio EarthRites, especially on the Spoken Word side of things. More on the way, as usual.
The Invisible College #11 “Alchemy” Should be out this week. I will post here, and elsewhere when that occurs.
Weather certainly has taken a turn, almost to normal, but for how long? Lots of rain in Oregon, which is the norm, perhaps the drought will be lessened with all of the downpours.
I pray this finds you well, and happy.
Thanks all for their support of the projects,
____________________________________________ On The Menu:
Gwyllm Substack “Mantis Tale”
Art Calendar 2022!
Michael McClure & Ray Manzarek: The Cup We Drink From
William Butler Yeats: In The Seven Woods
Michael McClure & Ray Manzarek: Antechamber of the Night
____________________________________________ Gwyllm Substack “Mantis Tale”
_____________________________________ Michael McClure & Ray Manzarek: The Cup We Drink From
William Butler Yeats: In The Seven Woods
IN THE SEVEN WOODS.
I have heard the pigeons of the Seven Woods Make their faint thunder, and the garden bees Hum in the lime tree flowers; and put away The unavailing outcries and the old bitterness That empty the heart. I have forgot awhile Tara uprooted, and new commonness Upon the throne and crying about the streets And hanging its paper flowers from post to post, Because it is alone of all things happy. I am contented for I know that Quiet Wanders laughing and eating her wild heart Among pigeons and bees, while that Great Archer, Who but awaits His hour to shoot, still hangs A cloudy quiver over Parc-na-Lee.
THE WITHERING OF THE BOUGHS.
I cried when the moon was murmuring to the birds, ‘Let peewit call and curlew cry where they will, I long for your merry and tender and pitiful words, For the roads are unending and there is no place to my mind.’ The honey-pale Moon lay low on the sleepy hill And I fell asleep upon lonely Echtge of streams; No boughs have withered because of the wintry wind, The boughs have withered because I have told them my dreams.
I know of the leafy paths that the witches take, Who come with their crowns of pearl and their spindles of wool, And their secret smile, out of the depths of the lake; And of apple islands where the Danaan kind Wind and unwind their dances when the light grows cool On the island lawns, their feet where the pale foam gleams; No boughs have withered because of the wintry wind, The boughs have withered because I have told them my dreams.
I know of the sleepy country, where swans fly round Coupled with golden chains and sing as they fly, A king and a queen are wandering there, and the sound Has made them so happy and hopeless, so deaf and so blind With wisdom, they wander till all the years have gone by; I know, and the curlew and peewit on Echtge of streams; No boughs have withered because of the wintry wind, The boughs have withered because I have told them my dreams.
UNDER THE MOON.
I have no happiness in dreaming of Brycelinde; Nor Avalon the grass green hollow, nor Joyous Isle, Where one found Lancelot crazed and hid him for a while, Nor Ulad when Naoise had thrown a sail upon the wind, Nor lands that seem too dim to be burdens on the heart, Land-under-Wave, where out of the moon’s light and the sun’s Seven old sisters wind the threads of the long lived ones, Land-of-the-Tower, where Aengus has thrown the gates apart, p. 28 And Wood-of-Wonders, where one kills an ox at dawn To find it when night falls laid on a golden bier: Therein are many queens like Branwen, and Guinivere; And Niam, and Laban, and Fand, who could change to an otter or fawn And the wood-woman whose love was changed to a blue-eyed hawk; And whether I go in my dreams by woodland, or dun, or shore, Or on the unpeopled waves with kings to pull at the oar, I hear the harp string praise them or hear their mournful talk. Because of a story I heard under the thin horn Of the third moon, that hung between the night and the day, To dream of women whose beauty was folded in dismay, Even in an old story, is a burden not to be borne.
THE RIDER FROM THE NORTH.
From the play of The Country of the Young.
There’s many a strong farmer Whose heart would break in two If he could see the townland That we are riding to; Boughs have their fruit and blossom, At all times of the year, Rivers are running over With red beer and brown beer. An old man plays the bagpipes In a golden and silver wood, Queens, their eyes blue like the ice, Are dancing in a crowd. The little fox he murmured, ‘O what is the world’s bane?’ The sun was laughing sweetly, The moon plucked at my rein; But the little red fox murmured, ‘O do not pluck at his rein, He is riding to the townland That is the world’s bane.’
When their hearts are so high, That they would come to blows, They unhook their heavy swords From golden and silver boughs; But all that are killed in battle Awaken to life again; It is lucky that their story Is not known among men. For O the strong farmers That would let the spade lie, For their hearts would be like a cup That somebody had drunk dry. The little fox he: murmured, ‘O what is the world’s bane?’ The sun was laughing sweetly, The moon plucked at my rein; But the little red fox murmured, ‘O do not pluck at his rein, He is riding to the townland That is the world’s bane.’
Michael will unhook his trumpet
From a bough overhead,
And blow a little noise
When the supper has been spread.
Gabriel will come from the water
With a fish tail, and talk
Of wonders that have happened
On wet roads where men walk,
And lift up an old horn
Of hammered silver, and drink
Till he has fallen asleep
Upon the starry brink
The little fox he murmured,
‘O what is the world’s bane?
The sun was laughing sweetly,
The moon plucked at my rein;
But the little red fox murmured,
‘O do not pluck at his rein,
He is riding to the townland,
That is the world’s bane.’
_________________________________ Michael McClure & Ray Manzarek: Antechamber of the Night
_________________________________ “It is pointless trying to know where the way leads. Think only about your first step, the rest will come.” ― Shams Tabrizi