Morning Love Note

My Lady knows that I fall asleep most easily in the early morning, beneath the grey glow cast by a cloudy sky. I rest my head upon the pillow, beneath my bedroom window, and my mind soon wanders away.

Not long after, my heart takes flight through the glassy panes, without leaving so much as a trace of the silver wings that were granted by Her grace. It joins the dawn choir to sing with the birds She taught so well.

Crossing the River

Worship of Saraswati Devi dates back to the early Vedic period in India (1500 BCE), where she was the presiding spirit of a sacred and possibly mythical river. The name of the river is believed to be derived from the proto-Indo-Iranian *sáras-vat-ī, which supposedly means “marshy” or “full of pools”. Another proposed etymology derives her name from the root *sar, which means “flow”. Though this latter theory has been widely repeated, it was apparently not favored by Manfred Mayrhofer, a linguist specializing in Sanskrit and Indo-Iranian languages.(1)

In modern worship, Saraswati’s origins as a river deity have been obscured. She is a deity of wisdom, and a patroness of learning and the arts. Modern commenters sometimes derive her name from Sanskrit Sāra and Sva, meaning of “essence of self-knowledge”. While not a historically valid etymology, it certainly captures Lady Saraswati’s character.

(1) Information taken from Wikipedia entry “Sarasvati River

Lesson of the Heirophant

I put my favorite deck (the Shadowscapes) aside some time ago, with no intention of picking it up again. My readings with it had become frustrating and stressful, to the point where I would have a visceral reaction of displeasure to most of the images. As much as I loved the artwork, I didn’t think I should use it any longer.

After that, I switched deck styles completely, using various “historical” decks, like the LoScarabeo reproduction of the Visconti-Sforza. (It’s very shiny). Learning to read the simple pips is a fun and ongoing adventure. Recently though, I felt drawn back to my Shadowscapes. It was strong enough that I actually did take the deck out despite my misgivings, and pull a few cards. I felt the old connection with it come sparkling back.

Later, I messaged a friend wondering why I felt so strongly drawn to this old deck again. She simply replied that it probably had something to teach me. I wondered what on earth that could be, so I took the cards out one more time and shuffled them. Then I pulled one; It was the Heirophant.

Not very subtle.

3rd Anniversary

One of the founders of the Western Buddhist Order, now known as Triratna, posed a question to readers in his book, Meeting the Buddhas: if your life was a mandala, what would be at the center? Is it your family, your job, your faith…what?

The three years since I began a formal relationship with My Lady Saraswati have gone by very quickly. Yet I feel as though She has always been in my life. I’m fairly certain she actually has, but I’m honestly also convinced that these feelings have more to do with how She has radically reordered my priorities and claimed her place in the center of my life’s mandala.

 

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Considerations for the Godbothered

So. You’re godbothered. What do you do?

  • Are you godbothered? I mean, really. Use your discernment and common sense. Is it a god who’s come to call, or is something else going on? These are the main possibilities to consider:
    • It is a god. More on this below.
    • It’s not a god, but it is some sort of entity that is not-you
      • Gods are not the only thing out there, and one can have very intense encounters with entities as seemingly humble as a tree spirit. (I have)
    • It’s not not-you
      • This one is very tricky. Only you know the inside of your head well enough to make this call. Is that numinous feeling a god’s presence, or is it the side effect of a new medication? (I’ve been there). Keep in mind the Delphic maxim and know thyself.
  • So, it is a god. What next?
    • Did you ask for this?
      • No, I mean literally. Did you ask for a god in your life? If you didn’t and one drops on you like a ton of bricks, you’ve already had your boundaries disrespected.
    • Do you want this?
      • If you didn’t ask for a divine presence in your life and suddenly find yourself with one, that is an even bigger red flag that the entity in question (god or not) has boundary issues, and possibly other issues as well.
    • Are you enjoying this?
      • This last question is actually pretty important. It’s not wrong or impious to end a relationship with a deity if it’s making you miserable.