Last December I posted that I would probably be inactive here in the foreseeable future. I writing now to announce that while I do not plan to end this blog, I have decided to establish another as my primary blog. Hopefully the new blog Ama-ar-gi: the Return to the Mother will be a place from which I will be able to effectively communicate what I wish without the problems I have had in my communications in posting from Devotion to the High Queen of Heaven. The link to Ama-ar-gi: the Return to the Mother is https://houseofthea.wordpress.com/ Please check it out if you are interested in my writings
I really like this. It certainly speaks to me.
22 Astraea 3336
Today is the fourth Candredi of Advent.
It has been much longer since my last post than I like to let pass. This has owed partly to the general busyness of life and partly to the fact that much of my time for spiritual writing and scholarship has lately been devoted to another project (about which I am rather excited and which I will be sharing with you here when it is finished). In far larger measure than I would like to admit, however, the delay witnesses the passing successes of my demons.
This is always a difficult time of year for me, as I am rather strongly seasonally affective. The darkness begins to take its toll on me usually in November, and the cold in December (it was 20 below zero Fahrenheit when I first left my house this morning). The dark and the cold stay heaped upon me like so…
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For over two year now I have increasingly felt out of place within the broad Independent Deanic movement in several aspects of its life.I do not need to go into any particular details about these issues now. As a result I am going into a one of my periods of questioning what my role in the movement will be or even if I really have one. As a result for a while at least I suspect that my involvement with this blog will be minimal. I suspect that for an indefinite amount of time I will be making few posts here though I might post in other arenas. I of course might write an occasional article and post it here and may even change my mind and continue posting here regularly . However I doubt this will happen.
Please note. I am not going into any crisis in faith in Dea or at least not any crisis more severe than is normal. What I am going through is a period of trouble understanding where I fit into this whole thing. Enough for now.
In my last several posts, my attention has been focused on the subject of the Janya / the angelology of De’anism. I think that at this point I have said about what I have wanted to say about the subject. What I want to do at this point is simply summarize my own current understanding of angelology, perhaps make a few additional comments, and end the discussion for now. As I stated in my last post my previous understandings of certain of the goddesses which I have thought about over the years from various traditions does overlap into my understanding and naming of the Janya. The following list is made up of the Janya whom I currently worship and of those whose existence I accept based on tradition but who do not have any prominent place in my thinking or in my devotional life. That does not mean that they do not have any place in my life at all because after all the Janya are involved in all things whether acknowledged and worshiped or not. This list is in rough order of importance of their thealogical importance in my thinking and practice. I must say however that the Ladies Mayat, Aramati and Melanae are so intertwined in reality that they all have about equal importance in my devotional life. They are almost as three sisters together.
One. Aset Mayat / Ma’at. She is Janya / Goddess of righteousness, justice, and of good law. She is the path and way of life of
Dea. She is commandment and right relationship with Dea and with all creatures both human and animal. As such love runs through her structures because justice without love can not stand whereas love without justice degenerates into hypocrisy and into mere impotent emotion that does nothing for that which is supposedly loved. The Lady Mayat is the almost exact equivalent of the Egyptian goddess Maat whose name she has. In Aristasian angelology she is the equivalent of Sai Thame. There are some differences however between the two however but I do not want to discuss these now.
Two. Aset Aramati. She is the Janya of devotion, of worship, and love of Dea. She is also the Janya of hope and faith which are of necessity aspects of the love of Dea. She is the Janya of the earth but is not one of the seven planetary Janya. She is clearly has a close relationship with Sushuri, the Janya of love.
Three. Aset Melanae. She is the Janya of natural restriction, limits, and the sufferings which these cause. Thus she can be seen as the Lady of Sufferings. She is associated with darkness and the color black. Thus She can be addressed as the Black One or as the Dark One. Since repentance, the turning to Dea involves both restriction and suffering she is the Janya of repentance. Note. She is not the cause of all forms of suffering. The suffering of the murdered, of the dehumanized, of those brutally used is authored by the the evil one or the evil urge not the Lady Melanae. These forms of suffering are disruptions of the good order of Dea. However Lady Melanae is present even within these forms of undeserved sufferings in order to bring her presence and comfort to its victims. She is also the Goddess of meditation and of the quiet of meditation. Her equivalent within the Aristasian angelology is Sai Rhave
Four. Aset Atanna. She is the Janya of force, of strength, of power, of struggle, and of conflict. Her role in the service of Dea is to aggressively serve, defend, and promote the good of life itself. Thus She serves the purposes and goodness of Dea. The ancient Greeks saw her as the goddess who defended the fortress, who defended the peoples. She defends the justice which nurtures life. She is also the authoress of the skills of the worker, of the crafts person, and even of the soldier and political leader. She planted the olive tree and tamed the horse and is the patroness of the weaving of cloth. She is the equivalent of Sai Vikhe.
Note. While the four Janya listed above play a dominant role within own religious practice, I have never found a way fit those listed below either within my thinking nor religious practice .
Five. Sai Raya. She is the Janya of Ruler-ship, of Glory, of Majesty, of the Mother. She represents the Creatress of all that exists. Within Deanism she is represented by the sun. Since within my own personal thealogy Isis / Aset is the creatress and has the identical qualities as Sai Raya it is difficult for me to envision any degree of separation between them. Furthermore since to my mind the qualities which Sai Raya represents do not seem to be qualities that are normally earthly in nature I tend simply see Sai Raya as Dea herself. And since most of my worship is addressed to Dea in herself anyway, I do not worship Sai Raya specifically.
Six. Sai Candre. She is the Janya of the Moon and of the Daughter. As thus she is central to the dominant Filianic form of Deanism. However since I am not a Filianic / Daughterist at this point in my life and therefore my understanding of what role she plays in my life is undeveloped.
Seven Sai Sushuri. She is the Janya of all forms of love. Thus she is the mistress of romantic love, of familal love, of friendships, of the attractional interconnectedness of matter. She is the goddess of the community, of the people. She can also be seen as the Janya of worldly pleasures. Within the society of ancient Egypt society the goddess Hathor would have been her closest equivalent. It seems clear to me that the name of Sushuri itself comes from the name Sucri which is a feminized version of the Hindu god Sukri the god of the planet Venus. The name Sushuri looks Japanese to me but it is not a normative female name. Thus I think that it is Sucri made to sound Japanese to English speeding ears. Of course this interpretation could be wrong but it is the best that I have..
Eight. Sai Mati. She is the Janya of wisdom. Of course within the ancient Greek religion Athena was also the goddess of wisdom. However the wisdom of Athena tended to be of a very worldly, pragmatic kind. Wisdom as Sophia of course has a dominant role in many major religious traditions such as Gnosticism, Judaism, Christianity, and Buddhism.
A few more words. In spite of all of the effort I and others have expended in the discussion of the Janya of Dea, De’ani are not required to worship the Janya in spite of the fact that most do. If one worships Dea in herself fully and obeys her will, and takes on her virtues that is enough. However however most Deani beleive that having a relationship of worship to the Janya connect one more fully with Dea as she is in her fullness.
Another question that can be legitimately asked is to what degree should believers see the Janya as being separate beings with identities co-existing within the being of Dea and to what extent Dea herself? As stated earlier the Janya are living intelligent streams of Dea who organize the universe as Dea desires as her being demands. Thus at a minimal they should be seen as being aspects of her being and will. However it is possible for us to see them as being persons in some degree in their own right as long as one does not forget about the fact that they are rooted in Dea herself. On the whole I think that one should not worry about this questions too much. In my personal life I tend at times to see them as simply being Dea herself in a certain form and at other times I tend to see them almost as I have seen some of the Great Goddessses of antiquity, as being individual divine persons. Please note within De’anism a person is not limited to having a set physical-like body. Anyway I guess that I will understand the relationship of Dea and her Janya much better only after I am no longer in this life. Enough for now.
I have been working on several new posts during the past several weeks, however to a significant degree my attention has been focused on the recent US presidential elections. During this same time period I have also been experiencing another renewal of interest in political issues generally. As a result of this I have been making attempts to redevelop connections with groups which advocate on issues which are of particular concern to myself. Thus since I do believe that the most decisive issue of the contemporary world in its long term effects is climate change and the ongoing ecocide of the planet, I have recently rejoined groups such the the World Wildlife fund, Worldwatch Institute and other environmental organizations. Since I strongly oppose the Islamophobia of much of American culture I have also joined the Council for American Islamic Religions (CAIR) the largest and most influential Islamic civil rights organization within the United States. The International Crisis Group and the United Nations Refugee Organization are other groups which I have recently joined.
I am aware that much of this activity is primarily symbolic in nature, though the small gifts and donations which I can afford to give will do some good. But it is better to do a little good than as a result of despair or practiced indifference do nothing at all. Anyway by reattaching myself to the information channels provided by organizations such as these perhaps in the future I will be able to act more effectively on a political level in the future.
Within the Deanic scriptures – The Secret of the World – Verse 23 – it is said “Change that within you and the world will change. But seek to change the world and all essence will remain the same.” Some may believe this means that Deani should not be involved in good works or that the desire and passion to create a better world is an illusion. I do not see it this way. I believe that it is instead a warning to those who would seek to change the outer world without correspondingly changing themselves in accord to Dea’s will. Certainly to a great degree my own life has been focused on changing the outside world to the cost of efforts to change myself. The failures of these efforts are obvious to me. To a great degree I believe that the political forces within this society which shout from the rooftops and the streets that they are on the side of social justice and love and in opposition to hate, greed, and all other negative aspects of human nature often fail to transform their own lives in relation to God either. In fact many probably do not even believe in Her reality. I believe the failure of many political movements to fulfill their promise of a more hopeful future is a result of this failure to be transformed within. The almost complete failure of the Socialist and Communist movements to radically change the world to the better is connected to their almost complete rejection of any level of spirituality at all.
But on the other hand, to supposedly focus on the spiritual entirely without regard for how one actions or importantly ones lack of actions effects the world is clearly not in the will of Dea. How could it be when it is not in accordance with the rule of love mandated in the scriptures. Some kind of proper balance must be found and I am as I have during much of my life attempting to work out that proper balance for myself.
Race Mochridhe has recently posted an article within Apron Strings, a blog in which he presents his thoughts from a Filianic and Feminine Essentualist perspective. Within his recent article he deals quite brilliantly with some of the problems which often afflict my own prayer life. I am reblogging the article so that readers who may not be aware of this blog, might become aware of it, and certainly so that they might read the article.
5 Werdë 3336
Tamala is passed, the lanterns are extinguished, the soul cakes have been taken in. The last of the mellowcreme pumpkins clings politely to the candy dish. Something in our air is gone, whether the warmth of summer, the presence of a loved one, or a devil that had hovered about our shoulders. Tamala is a time of death and rebirth, not only for souls but for selves. If, on the Day of Werdë, we contemplate our cooperation with fate in the weaving of our futures, on Tamala we vow to rid ourselves of what is better left in the past.
And so, as I resume my normal routines, I find myself thinking about the recitation of the rosary that I make every Rayadi. There are weeks in which my recitation is heartfelt and moved, just as, in the throes of celebration, my resolve to die to the worst…
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I plan to end my current discussion of the Janya within my next full post. However I will be returning to the subject periodically. What I want to do now is repost an article about the Janya Aset Mayat which I wrote about two years ago. The article is entitled To Lady Ma’at, the Righteous One. Sophia Ruth within her excellent blog mydevotionstoDea has reblogged it recently. This version of the article is going to be a little different from the original because I am adding three additional prayers to the one which I added to the original article in 2014. Each prayer was composed by myself and reflect my own individual concerns and needs.
Within most religious traditions there is a concept of divine order. truth, justice, or law which is viewed as central to those religions. Thus within Judaism the Torah is central and plays a equivalent role to that which Jesus plays within Christianity. Within Islam the concept of Islamic law, the Sharia, is second only to the Koran in importance. Within both Hinduism and Buddhism the concept of Dharma is central. Within the Zoroastrian religion a central theological tradition is that of the Seven Bountiful Immortals / Angels. Of these the most important conception is that of Asha / Asa which is divine truth / righteousness / law, etc. Within the Pagan society of ancient Egypt a central role was played by Ma’at. Maat for the ancient Egyptians was both moral ideal and endeavor but also the Goddess who manifested those qualities. These are just some examples of the centrality of this concept(s). There are many more.
When thinking on this divine law or justice we should not think of this Law of the Deity as being something that is imposed from the outside by some arbitrary dictatorial God. On the contrary this order / law / ma’at exists both within and without of our very being. Without the physical order of nature which is enfolded within the Divine Nature, the physical being of life and of our bodies could not exist. Without a certain degree of order and justice, societies and nations could not exist. Instead they would collapse and the result would be failed states in which in which social anarchy and a war of all against all is the norm.
Order in its forms of symmetry and proportion is also central to the beauty of both nature and cultural productivity. Without order, proportion, and symmetry nature would not be beautiful, nor could the visual arts, dance, manners, and many other aspects of culture exist.
In worship when we invoke the Name of the Angel of Order, Law, and Justice as either Asha or Ma’at or by some other name, we are acknowledging and confessing the fact that we need to live by the norms of the righteousness / justice / the law of Thea / God. We are also invoking the help of the Angel to aid us in this endeavor. And in invoking the Angel we are also invoking Thea herself.
The problem of course is that a counter tendency exists within the world and within humanity. This tendency is conceptualised within Filianism / Deanism as “kear,” within the Jewish and Christian traditions as sin or the evil urge. Within these and many traditions, It is seen as that within us that is destructive to our own selves and to others, and to society as a whole. It is also destructive to nature on which society must reside. In Deanism and many traditions it is seen as the false self as opposed to the true self. It is a selfishness and ingratitude to Thea; an egotism which refuses to live according to the order, the pattern of Ma’ at in right relationship with self, with society, with Thea.
Thus we must struggle against this false self in all ways by striving to discipline personal life so that it is devoted to Thea, while simultaneously pursuing a struggle against injustice within, community, society and nation, the earth itself. We can not do this based only on our own powers, but we may call upon the name of Thea for the power to live within her will. This may be best done by calling upon in her angelic persona particularly upon the Janya of Righteousness. We can call upon her in the Name that resonates most closely to us. For me that name is Ma’at.
What is it about the name of the Lady Ma’at which is so compelling. As stated previously, Egyptian civilization was based solidly on the principle of Ma,at as order / justice / truth in both the physical and the spiritual moral world. All activity within Egyptian society, that of the pharoanic government, that of the nobility, that of the people was ideally based on the foundation of Ma’at. In fact the destiny of the dead was decided within the Hall of Maati / Truth / Judgement in which a judgment was made upon the dead based on the criteria of how they had lived in relation to Ma’at. The purpose of the famous 42 Negative Confessions was to determine this. Thus we have confessions such as:
“I have not deprived an orphan of his property, … I have not caused pain, I have not made hungry, I have not made to weep, I have not killed, I have not made suffering to anybody, I have not commanded to kill, etc.”
The emphasis on the importance of Ma’at is also witnessed within the epitaphs that were often marked upon the walls of tombs. Thus upon the tomb of the noble Sheshi is written these words as a part of his declaration of virtue.
I rescued the weak from one stronger than he as much as was in my power ….I gave bread to the hungry, cloths to the naked. I brought the boadless to dry land. I buried one who had no son…I respected my father, I pleased my mother, I raised their children.”
Many other examples of this kind of literature can be found within the wisdom literature of Ancient Egypt. Within the Instructions of Ptahhotep one of the most important pieces of Egyptian wisdom literature we have this bit of instruction for government leaders.
“If you are a leader who governs the affairs of the many, seek every excellent deed so that your conduct may be blameless. For Ma’at is great; it endured and is effective. It has not been disturbed since the time it was created. It is a path even for the unlearned.”
Of course Egyptian civilization and the normal behavior of most ordinary Egyptian probably did not conform fully to the idea of Maat any more than the ordinary behavior of most Christians conform to Jesus’ teachings within the “Sermon on the Mount.” However as Egypt’s social ideal, it no doubt did motivate the behavior of many people.
Of course Maat was also the Goddess who personified and ruled over the actitivities of Maat. Thus according to Wallis Bundge within his
“The Gods of the Egyptians” it is stated that she was praised as the “Daughter of Ra, the Eye of Ra, the Lady of Heaven, Queen of the Earth, and Mistress of the Underworld.” She was also the “Lady of the Gods and Goddesses, the Lady of the Judgement Hall / the Hall of Ma’ati.” She and her male counterpart Thoth the God of knowledge, wisdom, and scribal skills guided the great solar barque / ship which sailed over the sea of the Egyptian sky each day carrying the Creator Ra through the heavens. Ra and the other Gods were said to “live on Maat.” She was seen to be like the food which we eat, our drink, and air which we breath.
Thus while on one level Maat is a principle, a way of life manifested by the saying of Ma’at and doing of actions of Ma’at, She was also the personal Goddess who supports those actions. She was so much that so that according to the noted Egyptologist Geraldine Pinch when one died often the term “joining Ma’at” was used to announce that person’s death in a way similar to today’s expression that one has “passed away.” Ma’at was viewed as a personal divine presence and not purely as depersonalized abstraction.
According to the exclusivistic Monotheistic traditions of the West, the monotheistic ideal excludes belief in the multiple traditions of the gods and goddess of the pagan societies such as those of Ancient Egypt or Greece. However alternate forms of Monotheism have also developed within the Zoroastrian and Hindu traditions which envisioned the many Gods and Goddesses as Aspects of or Delegations of the power of the One whether that One is called either Brahman or Ahura Mazda. The Filianic / Deanic tradition has built upon that tradition with its theology of the Janya. This makes perfect sense to my mind and heart. And with my mind and heart I believe in the great Janya, the Lady Ma’at.
To the Righteous One
Praise be to Aset Mayat, the Righteous One, the Just One.
May she be blessed who whispers words of righteousness into the mind
Thanks be to the one who places justice before our sight,
who can make the doing of works of righteousness to be as food to us.
Lead us that the rule of Thea may be established upon this earth.
I give adoration of Lady Ma’yat
I give adoration to Lady Ma’at, our Righteousness and Good Law.
O Lady make me submissive to your rule this day.
May I embrace your disciplines first thing, above all,
above the resistance of the flesh, above indecision, above destructive thoughts
Help me in this, O Lady. Praise be to your Holy Name
O Angel of Righteousness .. of Good Law
Our Lady Ma’at, Angels of Righteousness, of Justice, of Good Law
whose order sustains creation, beauty, and good relationship.
May I live by you in good mind and actions
O Lady, Breaker of the chains of oppression, Liberator of the poor and wretched,
Redeemer from violence and injustice,
Lady Ma’at, Daughter of the Holy One, praise be to you.
O Mayat, Drive from my heart
O Lady Mayat, drive from my heart, that which would destroy me.
Drive out the evil one, the author of despair, who says “You are nothing,”
Who says “Life has no meaning,” who says “What you do means nothing”
May I renounce such thoughts!
O Lady may I live by faith in Thea; may I live by submission to her
Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the Gods, Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egpyt
by Geraldine Pinch
Maat: The Moral Ideal In Ancient Egypt by Maulana Karenga
The Gods of the Egyptians by E. A. Wallis Budge
The Filianic Scriptures, New Celestial Union Version edited by Sarah A. Morrigan