Young Sasha Keller has made his parents Jolene and Mike very happy by arriving to their arms this last week… All of our best wishes to Sasha and his Mum and Dad. May they all be happy together!

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:

The soul that rises with us, our life’s star,

Hath had elsewhere its setting,

And cometh from afar.

Not in entire forgetfulness,

And not in utter nakedness,

But trailing clouds of glory, do we come

From God, who is our home:

Heaven lies about us in our infancy.

– William Wordsworth (1770–1850)

Mike and Sasha….

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Happy Friday.

Mike sent me pictures this week of his Son , Sasha. I could not resist. I met Mike at Sacred Elixirs, where he was kind enough to record as much of it as he could. (You can find the recordings on Earthrites.org) He has a wonderful site: Plant Consciousness.com Jolene and Mike are settling in with young Sasha up in the south bay hills at this time. Our warm wishes go out to them at the start of the great adventure!

Bright Blessings!

Gwyllm

On The Menu:

The Links

On Dying and Being Reborn – by Ralph Metzner

Poetry: Brendan Perry

Intimations Of Immortality From Recollections Of Early Childhood – William Wordsworth

Art… various Symbolist…

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Coulter or Hitler?

“What side-effects—?”

Donato Giancola

Nemo’s Utopia… (Thanks D!)

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On Dying and Being Reborn – by Ralph Metzner

(excerpt)

So long as you do not have this dying and becoming, you’re only a gloomy guest on this darkening Earth.

– J. W. Goethe

To die and be reborn is a metaphor for the most radical and total transformation that consciousness and identity can undergo. When our self-image or self-concept, the sense of identity with which (and as which) we have lived, comes to an end, then we feel as though the ego or self is dying. The pattern of this transformation metaphor is as follows: whatever I call “me” is finished and dying; then, after a period of turmoil and uncertainty, there is the “rebirth” of a new identity, a new sense of who “I” am. The transformation involves all aspects of the psyche, because it involves the central organizing principle of selfhood. The new self that is born is naturally of a childlike nature, filled with the wonder, joy, and spontaneity of childhood.

In the mystery religions of ancient times and in many traditional cultures, “death-rebirth” was and is the name of an initiatory experience. Associated with it are ritual practices such as entombment, profound isolation, or painful ordeals through which the initiate must pass. Afterward, the initiate customarily adopts a new name, perhaps a new garment, and sometimes a new role in society, all of which express the newly reborn being. Although we no longer perform the ancient rituals of death and rebirth, many people, in changing their name, lifestyle, or work, are publicly signaling that a transformation has occurred.

The transformed personality can live and thrive only if the previous personality has died. This is also the meaning of Meister Eckhart’s saying that the Kingdom of God (which symbolizes the transformed, enlightened state of consciousness) is “for none but those who are thoroughly dead.” Both physical and psychological dying are valued because they lead to a better state, a transformed and more enlightened state. Similarly, there is an ancient tradition that the practice of dying leads to liberation and wisdom. Thus we hear Socrates say that “true philosophers make dying their profession, and to them of all men death is least alarming.”

Many a mythic hero or heroine, including Gilgamesh, Inanna, Odysseus, the Grail knights, and the Mayan twins, undertake dangerous journeys into the underworld land of the dead in order to fathom the secrets of death and life. Such journeys pay homage to the power and mystery of death.

Every time something ends in us, it dies: thus we experience thousands of little deaths each day, each hour. Thoughts arise, die, arise again; images form, dissolve, form again; feelings well up from within, crest and recede, to emerge again later. Insofar as we are identified with these thoughts, images, and feelings, we die, are reborn, die again, are reborn, continuously. Rumi said that “every instant you are dying and returning.” The German theologian and mystic Johannes Tauler spoke of the great value of such daily dying: “A man might die a thousand deaths in one day and find a joyful life corresponding to each of them.” Anyone who has ever had the experience of letting go of some craving or attachment and has felt the sudden lift, the ecstatic freedom that comes from this, will know the truth of these statements.

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I first became aware of Brendans’ work with Dead Can Dance. Now I love Liza Gerrards’ voice and all, but my favourite bits would be Brendans’ soulful, though provoking works. His output is not what it should be, for my taste, but all good things comes to those who wait. I suggest picking up his Eye of The Hunter. great album that.

Enjoy.

G

—-

Poetry/Lyrics: Brendan Perry

The Captive Heart

The old clock is ticking now

Marks the space between us

Your memory enshrouds my heart

For I am held a captive

Sometimes my soul desires

To take leave of this old world

To spread these golden wings and fly

To the city of angels

But then if I close my eyes

I can see you standing there

Your face in permanence smiles

Your lips a chalice

Seems like Ive loved you all my life

Never thought Id find you

One day the muse may lend these words wings

So I can touch you

But hey!

Dont worry if the feelings not strong for you

I have lived my life in accordance

To the windfalls of passion

Though I know what it means

To be loved and then forgotten

I have seen too many men

Driven insane by their distractions

Voyage of Bran

Father father

Can you tell me

Where the hours go

Where time flows ?

It is written in the stars

Upon the milky way

That we must burn bright

Before we fade away ?

Mother mother

Can you tell me

Where the fire goes

When the flames cease ?

“From the ashes to the astral plain

Where the setting sun meets the sea, Brendan”

I live by the river

Where the old gods still dream

Of inner communion

With the open sea

Through the eye of the hunter

In search of a prey

Neither beast nor human

In my philosophy

If you don’t recognise me

Well it’s simply because

I’ve outgrown these old clothes

Time to move on

For you and I will outlive

The masks life gave us

When this shadowplay comes

To a close

—-

Medusa

When all you have left are your memories

And diamonds and pearls for company

I’ll be sailing to St. Lucia on the ocean breeze

With the moon and my scars for company

In your bedroom you keep an iron cage

Where a blackbird sings her freedom song

For you know the true value of keeping slaves

They sing the saddest of songs

Medusa you robbed me of my youth

Abandoned me on the tropic of solitude

Seducer of the shipwrecked and forlorn

You told me to undress

Then crowned my head with thorns

Medusa you robbed me of my youth

Abandoned me on the tropic of solitude

Seducer of the shipwrecked and forlorn

You told me to get dressed

Then turned my heart to stone

Sloth

Sometimes when I’m alone

I imagine that the world is a mirror

And in minds eye behold my dark inner nature

I’ve been waiting time on this time honoured whore

‘Til I get so confused I can’t see anymore

And I have crawled where I should have seen the signs

Dragging my feet when I could have been flying

Sometimes when I’m sad

I drink to the health of my torment

And dance at the altar

To the tune of a drunken black tango

I’ve been waiting time on this time honoured whore

‘Til I get so confused I can’t see anymore

Wastes my mouth trying to settle old scores

Dragging my feet when I could have been flying

Dragging my feet when I could have been flying

Dragging my feet

How Fortunate the Man with None

You saw sagacious Solomon

You know what came of him,

To him complexities seemed plain.

He cursed the hour that gave birth to him

And saw that everything was vain.

How great and wise was Solomon.

The world however did not wait

But soon observed what followed on.

It’s wisdom that had brought him to this state.

How fortunate the man with none.

You saw courageous Caesar next

You know what he became.

They deified him in his life

Then had him murdered just the same.

And as they raised the fatal knife

How loud he cried: you too my son!

The world however did not wait

But soon observed what followed on.

It’s courage that had brought him to that state.

How fortunate the man with none.

You heard of honest Socrates

The man who never lied:

They weren’t so grateful as you’d think

Instead the rulers fixed to have him tried

And handed him the poisoned drink.

How honest was the people’s noble son.

The world however did not wait

But soon observed what followed on.

It’s honesty that brought him to that state.

How fortunate the man with none.

Here you can see respectable folk

Keeping to God’s own laws.

So far he hasn’t taken heed.

You who sit safe and warm indoors

Help to relieve out bitter need.

How virtuously we had begun.

The world however did not wait

But soon observed what followed on.

It’s fear of god that brought us to that state.

How fortunate the man with none.

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Brendan Perry Bio

I was born in Whitechapel, London in 1959 to Anglo-Irish parents and subsequently raised and schooled in the East End of London, until my family emigrated to Auckland, New Zealand, seeking a new life and new opportunities. Having received no prior formal musical education, I began to play the guitar under the guiding influence of Maori and Polynesian muscians at the catholic school I attended in Ponsonby. After half hearted attempts to become a primary school teacher and then join the civil service, I drifted through a series of jobs until I was asked to join The Scavengers in 1977. At first I played bass Guitar later taking on the duties of lead vocalist when the original singer left the band. Apart from a handful of original songs we would cover music from the Stooges, New York Dolls, and the late 60′s Psychadelia. After two years of entertaining controversy, unable to secure a recording deal or live dates (largely due to the media’s sensationalist attitude towards punk) We decided to move to Melbourne, Australia, in 1979 and changed our name to the Marching Girls. In 1980 I left the Marching Girls to pursue a more creative personal musical odyssey, experimenting with tape loops, synthesis and alternative forms of rhythm.

In 1981 I formed Dead Can Dance with Simon Monroe and Paul Erikson (both of whom were to leave within the year soon after we had relocated to London) and of course Lisa Gerrard, who was to become my fellow navigator and soul musical companion for the next fifteen years. Today I live in Rural Ireland where I can be found indulging myself in mythological and natural interests such as Dragon Hunting.

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Welcome to the wide and tumbling world Sasha, may you grace it with your beauty and love!

INTIMATIONS OF IMMORTALITY FROM RECOLLECTIONS OF EARLY CHILDHOOD

I

THERE was a time when meadow, grove, and stream,

The earth, and every common sight,

To me did seem

Apparelled in celestial light,

The glory and the freshness of a dream.

It is not now as it hath been of yore;–

Turn wheresoe’er I may,

By night or day,

The things which I have seen I now can see no more.

II

The Rainbow comes and goes,

And lovely is the Rose,

The Moon doth with delight

Look round her when the heavens are bare,

Waters on a starry night

Are beautiful and fair;

The sunshine is a glorious birth;

But yet I know, where’er I go,

That there hath past away a glory from the earth.

III

Now, while the birds thus sing a joyous song,

And while the young lambs bound

As to the tabor’s sound,

To me alone there came a thought of grief:

A timely utterance gave that thought relief,

And I again am strong:

The cataracts blow their trumpets from the steep;

No more shall grief of mine the season wrong;

I hear the Echoes through the mountains throng,

The Winds come to me from the fields of sleep,

And all the earth is gay;

Land and sea

Give themselves up to jollity,

And with the heart of May

Doth every Beast keep holiday;–

Thou Child of Joy,

Shout round me, let me hear thy shouts, thou happy

Shepherd-boy!

IV

Ye blessed Creatures, I have heard the call

Ye to each other make; I see

The heavens laugh with you in your jubilee;

My heart is at your festival,

My head hath its coronal,

The fulness of your bliss, I feel–I feel it all.

Oh evil day! if I were sullen

While Earth herself is adorning,

This sweet May-morning,

And the Children are culling

On every side,

In a thousand valleys far and wide,

Fresh flowers; while the sun shines warm,

And the Babe leaps up on his Mother’s arm:–

I hear, I hear, with joy I hear!

–But there’s a Tree, of many, one,

A single Field which I have looked upon,

Both of them speak of something that is gone:

The Pansy at my feet

Doth the same tale repeat:

Whither is fled the visionary gleam?

Where is it now, the glory and the dream?

V

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:

The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,

Hath had elsewhere its setting,

And cometh from afar:

Not in entire forgetfulness,

And not in utter nakedness,

But trailing clouds of glory do we come

From God, who is our home:

Heaven lies about us in our infancy!

Shades of the prison-house begin to close

Upon the growing Boy,

But He beholds the light, and whence it flows,

He sees it in his joy;

The Youth, who daily farther from the east

Must travel, still is Nature’s Priest,

And by the vision splendid

Is on his way attended;

At length the Man perceives it die away,

And fade into the light of common day.

VI

Earth fills her lap with pleasures of her own;

Yearnings she hath in her own natural kind,

And, even with something of a Mother’s mind,

And no unworthy aim,

The homely Nurse doth all she can

To make her Foster-child, her Inmate Man,

Forget the glories he hath known,

And that imperial palace whence he came.

VII

Behold the Child among his new-born blisses,

A six years’ Darling of a pigmy size!

See, where ‘mid work of his own hand he lies,

Fretted by sallies of his mother’s kisses,

With light upon him from his father’s eyes!

See, at his feet, some little plan or chart,

Some fragment from his dream of human life,

Shaped by himself with newly-learned art;

A wedding or a festival,

A mourning or a funeral;

And this hath now his heart,

And unto this he frames his song:

Then will he fit his tongue

To dialogues of business, love, or strife;

But it will not be long

Ere this be thrown aside,

And with new joy and pride

The little Actor cons another part;

Filling from time to time his “humorous stage”

With all the Persons, down to palsied Age,

That Life brings with her in her equipage;

As if his whole vocation

Were endless imitation.

VIII

Thou, whose exterior semblance doth belie

Thy Soul’s immensity;

Thou best Philosopher, who yet dost keep

Thy heritage, thou Eye among the blind,

That, deaf and silent, read’st the eternal deep,

Haunted for ever by the eternal mind,–

Mighty Prophet! Seer blest!

On whom those truths do rest,

Which we are toiling all our lives to find,

In darkness lost, the darkness of the grave;

Thou, over whom thy Immortality

Broods like the Day, a Master o’er a Slave,

A Presence which is not to be put by;

Thou little Child, yet glorious in the might

Of heaven-born freedom on thy being’s height,

Why with such earnest pains dost thou provoke

The years to bring the inevitable yoke,

Thus blindly with thy blessedness at strife?

Full soon thy Soul shall have her earthly freight,

And custom lie upon thee with a weight

Heavy as frost, and deep almost as life!

IX

O joy! that in our embers

Is something that doth live,

That nature yet remembers

What was so fugitive!

The thought of our past years in me doth breed

Perpetual benediction: not indeed

For that which is most worthy to be blest–

Delight and liberty, the simple creed

Of Childhood, whether busy or at rest,

With new-fledged hope still fluttering in his breast:–

Not for these I raise

The song of thanks and praise;

But for those obstinate questionings

Of sense and outward things,

Fallings from us, vanishings;

Blank misgivings of a Creature

Moving about in worlds not realised,

High instincts before which our mortal Nature

Did tremble like a guilty Thing surprised:

But for those first affections,

Those shadowy recollections,

Which, be they what they may,

Are yet the fountain light of all our day,

Are yet a master light of all our seeing;

Uphold us, cherish, and have power to make

Our noisy years seem moments in the being

Of the eternal Silence: truths that wake,

To perish never;

Which neither listlessness, nor mad endeavour,

Nor Man nor Boy,

Nor all that is at enmity with joy,

Can utterly abolish or destroy!

Hence in a season of calm weather

Though inland far we be,

Our Souls have sight of that immortal sea

Which brought us hither,

Can in a moment travel thither,

And see the Children sport upon the shore,

And hear the mighty waters rolling evermore.

X

Then sing, ye Birds, sing, sing a joyous song!

And let the young Lambs bound

As to the tabor’s sound!

We in thought will join your throng,

Ye that pipe and ye that play,

Ye that through your hearts to-day

Feel the gladness of the May!

What though the radiance which was once so bright

Be now for ever taken from my sight,

Though nothing can bring back the hour

Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;

We will grieve not, rather find

Strength in what remains behind;

In the primal sympathy

Which having been must ever be;

In the soothing thoughts that spring

Out of human suffering;

In the faith that looks through death,

In years that bring the philosophic mind.

XI

And O, ye Fountains, Meadows, Hills, and Groves,

Forebode not any severing of our loves!

Yet in my heart of hearts I feel your might;

I only have relinquished one delight

To live beneath your more habitual sway.

I love the Brooks which down their channels fret,

Even more than when I tripped lightly as they;

The innocent brightness of a new-born Day

Is lovely yet;

The Clouds that gather round the setting sun

Do take a sober colouring from an eye

That hath kept watch o’er man’s mortality;

Another race hath been, and other palms are won.

Thanks to the human heart by which we live,

Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,

To me the meanest flower that blows can give

Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.