Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Deity Challenge: XIII to XVIII

She is the cold initiator, so She is unaffected by injustices and imbalances, and because She knows, she knows that everything will turn out fine as soon as we here in the crucible of Her wheel eventually learn our lessons and claim our power.

That said, I remember Joseph Campbell said in "Power of the Myth" how today's youth lack the link to the past and a sense of heritage through storytelling, rites and symbolic wealth, generating violence and disconnection;  we live in a discontinued civilisation as victims of patriarchy and revisionism. So I would consider that a "sin" in light of Arianrhod's mysteries. Stripping anyone, whether a youth or a whole culture, of their identity and history is a terrible form of violence.

We do not know how Arianrhod was worshipped in the Old Days, but a lot of what is currently written, said and discussed about Her is UPG due to the fact that (if She ever had one) Her cult did not survive in stories, History or physical remains. Her symbols did, though, and they are pretty much the same.

Circle dances (especially Spiral and Labyrinth dances), agriculture (as the cycle of growing-harvesting-working the grain), storytelling as a means to retrieve and bestow (collective or individual) identity and vicarious initiation, astronomy, weaving, and everything having to do with a person's name, weapons and life partnership as ways of coming into power, initiation in society and maturity. All rites of passage are Her sacraments.

I learned once that there are two types of Mother Gods. One is the Earthly Mother, whose attributes are usually a river, the land, the crops, and education and everything that nurtures. The other is the Cosmic Mother, whose attributes are the ocean (check for Arianrhod), the Stars (check), the Universe as a whole (check) and everything that generates out of Herself (check).One is warm, the other is cold.  While the Cosmic Mother generates, the Earthly Mother cares for the offspring, much like Uncle Gwyddion did for Lleu. Arianrhod represents thus the Cosmic Mother in the Mabinogion and Welsh myth.

As the one who challenges Lleu and name the steps in his coming-into-power before he becomes the king of Gwynedd after his greatuncle Math, She also plays initiator and empowerer.

And as the powerful lady of a castle in the Western Sea, Arianrhod is one of the many Faerie queens of Celtic traditions that inspired the medieval figure of the Lady of the Lake.

As already explained in other topics (VI and VIII), I equate Arianrhod with the Greek Ariadne, the Hopi-Navajo goddess of the Whirling Rainbow, and several virgin mothers of heroes, gods and goddesses, especially if they are twins. And as the Cosmic Mother, I also relate Arianrhod to Yemaya/Iemanjá and Nyx, among others.

Because She is a mother, Arianrhod is either female or third gender, but I would not consider her male or of two genders. As a virgin, she is unpaired with any male, so she is not heterosexual. So in the scheme of human sexuality I learned to contemplate, She would be called "asexual female", but I am not sure She is completely deprived of sexuality. It could be understood that Labyrinth walking, and the dance in Her circle of so many heroes and deities are lovemaking to the Goddess. Human sexuality charts are not suitable for gods anyway.