Ceremonies… Ceremonies…

On The Music Box: Le Cafe Abstrait Vol 1….

(Andromeda – Gustave Dore)

In Greek mythology, Andromeda was the daughter of Cepheus and Cassiopeia, king and queen of Aethiopia.

Cassiopeia, having boasted herself equal in beauty to the Nereids, drew down the vengeance of Poseidon, who sent an inundation on the land and a sea-monster, which destroyed man and beast. The oracle of Ammon announced that no relief would be found until the king exposed his daughter Andromeda to the monster, so she was fastened to a rock on the shore.

Perseus, returning from having slain the Gorgon, found Andromeda, slew the monster, set her free, and married her in spite of Phineus, to whom she had before been promised. At the wedding a quarrel took place between the rivals, and Phineus was turned to stone by the sight of the Gorgon’s head (Ovid, Metamorphoses v. 1).

Andromeda followed her husband to Tiryns in Argos, and became the ancestors of the family of the Perseidae through Perseus’ and Andromeda’s son, Perses. Perseus and Andromeda had six sons (Perseides): Perses, Alcaeus, Heleus, Mestor, Sthenelus, and Electryon, and one daughter, Gorgophone. Their descendants ruled Mycenae from Electryon down to Eurystheus, after whom Atreus got the kingdom, and include the great hero Heracles. According to this mythology, Perses is the ancestor of the Persians.

After her death she was placed by Athena amongst the constellations in the northern sky, near Perseus and Cassiopeia. Sophocles and Euripides (and in more modern times Corneille) made the story the subject of tragedies. The tale is represented in numerous ancient works of art.

Andromeda is represented in the northern sky by the constellation Andromeda which contains the Andromeda Galaxy.


Gentle Reader,

Todays entry for you, as promised…. We are expecting a pretty large wind storm tonight, so if you don’t see an entry tomorrow, there was a very windy and electric-less reason.

Winds have been howling all night, heavy rains. Gust are expected up over 100mph tonight!


Getting ready for the Solstice and the ceremonies there-in. Hopefully, hopefully….



On The Menu:

The Links

Sema Ceremony In Seattle & Portland

Koans: The Stingy Artist & Just Go To Sleep

Poetry: The Amazing Blondel de Nesle & Richard The Lion Heart

Art: Gustave Dore….


The Links:

Search for Extraterrestrial Life Using Chiral Molecules: Mandelate Racemase as a Test Case

300 Mazahua Indians seize Mexican plant

Rowan is Happy Happy!!!

Erm…Soy is making kids ‘gay’?


Sema Ceremony of the Whirling Dervishes

My long time good friend and early spiritual mentor Susan Shipley informed me about these events; she will be there dancing in rememberance of Rumi’s passing. I expect these ceremonies and dances to be quite something else. I may well be there myself at the Portland event….

Sema Ceremony of the Whirling Dervishes

The Prayer Dance of Rumi – with a Sufi Music Concert

8pm Saturday, December 16 in Seattle

Spartan Gymnasium at Shoreline Community Center

NE 185th & Second Ave. NE, Shoreline, Washington

Directed by Postneshin Jelaluddin Loras. Featuring Master Sufi

Musicians direct from Turkey, Necati Çelik on oud, Arif Biçer on

ney & vocals, and Timuçin Çevikoglu on vocals and ney with

Musicians and Semazens of the Mevlevi Order of America.

Tickets $15 and $25 available at the door, or in advance at


Info from Hafiz, 206-784-8178.

Sema Ceremony of the Whirling Dervishes

Shebi Arus – The Wedding Night of Hz. Mevlana Jelaluddin RUMI

4:30pm Sunday, December 17 in Portland, Oregon

Smith Hall Ballroom at Portland State University

1825 SW Broadway, 97201



Just Go To Sleep

Gasan was sitting at the bedside of Tekisui three days before his teacher’s passing. Tekisui had already chosen him as his successor.

A temple recently had burned and Gasan was busy rebuilding the structure. Tekisui asked him: “What are you going to do when you get the temple rebuilt?”

“When your sickness is over we want you to speak there,” said Gasan.

“Suppose I do not live until then?”

“Then we will get someone else,” replied Gasan.

“Suppose you cannot find anyone?” continued Tekisui.

Gasan answered loudly: “Don’t ask such foolish questions. Just go to sleep.”

The Stingy Artist

Gessen was an artist monk. Before he would start a drawing or painting he always insisted upon being paid in advance, and his fees were high. He was known as the “Stingy Artist.”

A geisha once gave him a commission for a painting. “How much can you pay?” inquired Gessen.

“Whatever you charge,” replied the girl, “but I want you to do the work in front of me.”

So on a certain day Gessen was called by the geisha. She was holding a feast for her patron.

Gessen with fine brush work did the painting. When it was completed he asked the highest sum of his time.

He received his pay. Then the geisha turned to her patron, saying: “All this artist wants is money. His paintings are fine but his mind is dirty; money has caused it to become muddy. Drawn by such a filthy mind, his work is not fit to exhibit. It is just about good enough for one of my petticoats.”

Removing her skirt, she then asked Gessen to do another picture on the back of her petticoat.

“How much will you pay?” asked Gessen.

“Oh, any amount,” answered the girl.

Gessen named a fancy price, painted the picture in the manner requested, and went away.

It was learned later that Gessen had these reasons for desiring money:

A ravaging famine often visited his province. The rich would not help the poor, so Gessen had a secret warehouse, unknown to anyone, which he kept filled with grain, prepared for those emergencies.

From his village to the National Shrine the road was in very poor condition and many travellers suffered while traversing it. He desired to build a better road.

His teacher had passed away without realizing his wish to build a temple, and Gessen wished to complete this temple for him.

After Gessen had accomplished his three wishes he threw away his brushes and artist’s materials and, retiring to the mountains, never painted again.


Poetry: The Amazing Blondel de Nesle & Richard The Lion Heart

(Blondel de Nesle, dressed as a minstrel, finds the captive King Richard I of England by singing the first two couplets of a song they composed jointly.– Gustave Dore)

L ‘amours dont sui espris

Me semont de chanter;

Si fais con hons sopris

Qui ne puet endurer.

Et s’ai je tant conquis

Que bien me puis venter:

Que j’ai piec’a apris

Leaument a amer.

A li sont mi penser

Et seront a touz dis;

Ja nes en quier oster.

Remembrance dou vis

Qu’il a vermoil et cler

A mon cuer a ce mis

Que ne l’en puis oster;

Et se j’ai les maus quis,

Bien les doi endurer.

Or ai je trop mespris:

Ainz les doi mieuz amer.

Comment que j’os conter.

N’i a rien, ce m’est vis.

Fors que merci crier.

Plus bele ne vit nuns,

Ne de cors ne de vis;

Nature ne mist plus

De beaute en nul pris.

Por li mainiendrai l’us

D ‘Eneas et Paris,

Tristan et Pyramus,

Qui amerent jadis.

Or serai ses amis,

Or pri Deu de la sus,

Qu’a lor fin sole pris.


I am on fire with a love

which compels me to sing;

I act like a man taken by surprise

who cannot resist.

And yet I have gained something

to boast of:

that I long ago learned

to love loyally.

My thoughts are of her

and always will be;

I shall never seek to transfer them.

The memory of her face,

rosy and bright,

has so penetrated my heart

that I cannot remove it;

and since I have asked for these pains

I must endure them.

No this is mistaken–

I should rather love them.

Whatever I may say,

there is nothing to be done, I think.

Except to cry for mercy.

No one ever saw a fairer lady

either of form or of face;

Nature has never endowed anything

with more beauty.

For her I shall continue the tradition

of Aeneas and Paris.

of Tristan and Pyramus,

all of whom loved long ago.

Now I shall be their ally,

And now I pray to God above,

That I might share their fate.

Blondel de Nesle – Trans Christopher Page


Cuer Desirous Apaie…

Cuer desirous apaie

Douçours et confors;

Par joie d’amour vraie

Sui en baisant mors.

S’encor ne m’est autres dounez,

Mar fui onques de li privez.

A morir sui livrez,

Se trop le me delaie.

Premiers baisiers est plaie

D’Amours dedenz cors;

Mout m’angoisse et esmaie,

si ne pert defors.

He! las! por coi m’en sui vantez!

Ja ne me puet venir santez,

Se ce, dont sui navrez,

ma bouche ne rassaie.

Amours, vous me feïstes

Mon fin cuer trichier,

Qui tel savour meïstes

En son douz baisier,

A morir li avez apris,

Se pluz n’i prent qu’il n’i a pris;

Dont m’est il bien a vis,

Qu’en baisant me trahistes.

Certes, mout m’atraisistes

Juene a cel mestier;

N’ainc nului n’i vous istes

Fors moi engignier.

Je sui li plus loiauz amis.

Cui onques fust nus biens pramis.

He! las! tant ai je pis!

Amours, mar me nourristes!

Se je Dieu tant amaisse,

Con je fais celi,

Qui si me painne et lasse,

J’eüsse merci;

Qu’ainc amis de meilleur voloir

ne la servi pour joie avoir,

Con j’ai fait tout pour voir

Sanz merite et sanz grasse.

Se de faus cuer proiaisse,

Dont je ne la pri,

Espoir je recovraisse;

Maiz n’est mie einsi.

Amours, trop me faites doloir;

Et se vous serf sanz decevoir,

Ce me tient en espoir:

Qu’Amours nevre et repasse.

A Honeyed Consolation…

A honeyed consolation

will soothe anxious hearts

by true love’s exultation

I die by a kiss

unless another’s given me

I never will be free of it.

I’m delivered to death

If there’s too much delaying.

At first, a kiss is pleasure

of Love in the heart:

it brings dismay and anguish

if it’s lost without;

ah, then alas, why should I boast

my health no longer can return

by what I’m deprived of:

my mouth has no returning.

Love, you have made within me

a treacherous heart,

for you’ve put such a savor

into your sweet kiss

that you have taught it how to die

unless it takes more than it did

wherefore I clearly see

in kissing, you’ve betrayed me.

You surely drew me greatly

while young, to this means.

You never would deceive

another, just me.

I am the loyallest of friends

who ever had a promise made;

ah! so much worse for me!

Love, you have served me badly.

Had I loved God so greatly

as I have loved her,

and if I were tormented

I’d have mercy then,

And even well-intentioned friends

have been no help in having joy

as I’ve done all to see

unthanked and unrewarded.

If I asked out of falseness

(but that’s not the case)

I could get back my hoping,

but it’s not like that.

O Love, you make me ache too much

and if I serve without deceit

this will keep up my hopes,

for Love heals what he wounded.

Blondel de Nesle – Trans. James H.Donalson


The Historical Blondel de Nesle

(fl 1180-1200)

Only two facts concerning him are known for a certainty: dedications of various songs to the oldest generation of trouvères indicate that he must have been born around 1155-1160; according to features of dialect in his songs, he hailed from Picardy, most likely the town of Nesle.

Some scholars have attempted to identify him with a powerful local lord named Jehan II, while others, pointing out that in contemporary mentions of him he is nowhere referred to as Messire or Monsignor, have suggested that he was a younger son of lesser nobility or perhaps a commoner.

Twenty-three of Blondel’s songs survive, some of them in ten or more sources, and seven of these with the music. So a third fact about him may be added to those two above: his chansons were exceedingly popular.

The work of Blondel that is featured in Coeur de Lion, Mon Coeur is listed as Chanson XI by Yvan Lepage


Richard The Lion Heart…

(Richard The Lion Heart In Palestine – Gustave Dore)


Dalfin, fe·us voilh deresnier,

Vos e le comte Guion,

Que an en ceste seison

Vos feïstes bon guerrier,

E vos jurastes en moi:

Et me·n portastes tiel foi

Com en Aenqris a Rainart:

E sembles dou poil liart.

Vos me laïstes aidier

Por treive de quierdon:

E car savies qu’a Chinon

Non a argent ni denier;

Et roi voletz, riche roi,

Bon d’armes, qui vos port foi;

Et je suis chiché, coart,

Si vos viretz de l’autre part.

Encor vos voilh demandier

D’Ussoire, s’il vous siet bon:

Ni s’in prendetz vanjaison,

Ni lonaretz soudadier.

Mas una rien vos outroi

Si be·us faussastes la loi,

Bon guerrier a l’estendart

Trovaretz le roi Richart.

Ie vos vi, au comencier,

Large, de grande mession;

Mes puis troves ochoison

Que per forts chastels levier,

Laissastes don et denoi

Et cors et segre tornoi:

Mes n’est qu’a avoir regart

Que François sont Longobart.


Vai, sirventes: ie t’envoi

A Avernhe, et di moi

As deus comtes, de ma part,

S’ui mes funt pes, Diex les gart!

Que chaut si garz ment sa foi,

Que escuiers n’a point de loi!

Mes des or avant se gart

Que n’ait en pejor sa part.


Dauphin, I would like to ask

you and Guy the Count, as well,

who heretofore have always been

of the best of fighting men:

you swore your fealty to me

and you demonstrated faith:

Isenqrim’s faith to Renard –

are you made of rabbit-skins?

Now you’ve left off helping me

fearing there’ll be no reward,

for you know that at Chinon

there’s no copper, much less gold,

and you want a king who’s rich:

good at arms, inspiring you,

while I’m petty, cowardly,

so you turn the other way.

Once aqain, I have to ask,

if you think about Issoire:

if you’ll take revenge down there;

if you’ll raise your soldiers up,

but there’s one thíng I must grant:

though you’re false to honor’s law

you will find a fighter still

when King Richard takes the flag.

At the first, I thought you were

generous and noble men,

but you found occasion then

to deliver strongholds while

dropping gifts and courtly words,

horns and secret tournaments,

but just look around and see

that the French are Lombards now.


Sirventes, I’ll send you now

to Auvergne, to the two counts:

can tell them then, for me,

if unjustly they make peace,

God help them! For I don’t care:

if a lawless knave should lie,

but they should take care henceforth

not to take a lower place.

King Richard I (Lionheart) trans. James H.Donalson


Ja nus hons pris ne dira sa raison

Adroitement, se dolantement non;

Mais par effort puet il faire chançon.

Mout ai amis, mais povre sont li don;

Honte i avront se por ma reançon

— Sui ça deus yvers pris.


Ce sevent bien mi home et mi baron–

Ynglois, Normant, Poitevin et Gascon–

Que je n’ai nul si povre compaignon

Que je lessaisse por avoir en prison;

Je nou di mie por nule retraçon,

—Mais encor sui [je] pris.


Or sai je bien de voir certeinnement

Que morz ne pris n’a ami ne parent,

Quant on me faut por or ne por argent.

Mout m’est de moi, mes plus m’est de ma gent,

Qu’aprés ma mort avront reprochement

—Se longuement sui pris.


N’est pas mervoille se j’ai le cuer dolant,

Quant mes sires met ma terre en torment.

S’il li membrast de nostre soirement

Quo nos feïsmes andui communement,

Je sai de voir que ja trop longuement

—Ne seroie ça pris.


Ce sevent bien Angevin et Torain–

Cil bacheler qui or sont riche et sain–

Qu’encombrez sui loing d’aus en autre main.

Forment m’amoient, mais or ne m’ainment grain.

De beles armes sont ore vuit li plain,

—Por ce que je sui pris


Mes compaignons que j’amoie et que j’ain–

Ces de Cahen et ces de Percherain–

Di lor, chançon, qu’il ne sunt pas certain,

C’onques vers aus ne oi faus cuer ne vain;

S’il me guerroient, il feront que vilain

—Tant con je serai pris.


Contesse suer, vostre pris soverain

Vos saut et gart cil a cui je m’en clain

—Et por cui je sui pris.


Je ne di mie a cele de Chartain,

—La mere Loës.


No prisoner can tell his honest thought

Unless he speaks as one who suffers wrong;

But for his comfort as he may make a song.

My friends are many, but their gifts are naught.

Shame will be theirs, if, for my ransom, here

—I lie another year.


They know this well, my barons and my men,

Normandy, England, Gascony, Poitou,

That I had never follower so low

Whom I would leave in prison to my gain.

I say it not for a reproach to them,

—But prisoner I am!


The ancient proverb now I know for sure;

Death and a prison know nor kind nor tie,

Since for mere lack of gold they let me lie.

Much for myself I grieve; for them still more.

After my death they will have grievous wrong

—If I am a prisoner long.


What marvel that my heart is sad and sore

When my own lord torments my helpless lands!

Well do I know that, if he held his hands,

Remembering the common oath we swore,

I should not here imprisoned with my song,

—Remain a prisoner long.


They know this well who now are rich and strong

Young gentlemen of Anjou and Touraine,

That far from them, on hostile bonds I strain.

They loved me much, but have not loved me long.

Their plans will see no more fair lists arrayed

—While I lie here betrayed.


Companions whom I love, and still do love,

Geoffroi du Perche and Ansel de Caieux,

Tell them, my song, that they are friends untrue.

Never to them did I false-hearted prove;

But they do villainy if they war on me,

—While I lie here, unfree.


Countess sister! Your sovereign fame

May he preserve whose help I claim,

—Victim for whom am I!


I say not this of Chartres’ dame,

—Mother of Louis!

Translated by Henry Adams


Have A Good One!

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