The name Diotima means one who honors or is honored by Zeus, and her descriptor as “Mantinikê” (Mantinean) seems designed to draw attention to the word “mantis”, which suggests an association with prophecy.
“The Philosophy of Love”
“Then at last man will behold beauty with the eye of the mind and will be able to bring forth not mere images of what is good for man but realities… Would that be an ignoble life Socrates?” ~Diotima of Mantinea
The Ngangikurungkurr practice what they call dadirri, a form of deep listening for these sacred stories. As Aboriginal elder Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr puts it, “Through the years, we have listened to our stories.
They are told and sung, over and over, as the seasons go by. Today we still gather around the campfires and together we hear the sacred stories. As we grow older, we ourselves become the storytellers.
We pass on to the young ones all they must know. The stories and songs sink quietly into our minds and we hold them deep inside. In the ceremonies we celebrate the awareness of our lives as sacred.”
Turner, Toko-pa. Belonging: Remembering Ourselves home (Kindle Locations 3112-3116). Her Own Room Press. Kindle Edition.
On this hot and muggy afternoon, I am going to dance with these gals… lets see if we can bring some thunder and a good pour of rain… we need it. A rain dance of hope at least! In Sunny California.
Female asteroid goddess fun!!
Praying Mantis is an anthropomorphism often found in all my art.
These asteroid Goddesses are positive parts of our female psyches. Health, strength, and the ability to fight for the integrity of all life. The right to choose. A right for justice and equality. A rich part of history and mythology which shine through us all. As we look up into the heavens, we find these asteroids. If we look to these little creatures on earth as the praying mantis, we find the beauty of nature. Brought together through art we reflect within ourselves the balance that we all need for good health. A healthy psyche to share with the world. A symbolic healing panacea.
4, 9 by 12-inch watercolors.
At home I like to have projects to do. Husband got me a new book called Asteroid Goddesses by Demetra George & Douglas Bloch. It is a networking book that ties up so many years of study. Astronomy, astrology, spirituality, mythology and psychology. A remarkable book. It reads well. I like to engage in mythology, so I did up a little water-color fun with four of the main players heavenwards. What a fun project !! Some female asteroids that have a powerful punch to the human psyche. We need it.
The emergence of values from remembering repeats in our old age the ancient myth of Memory, the mother of the nine. Muses. Each of the Muses—the patronesses of astronomy, comedy, dance, eloquence, epic, history, music, amatory poetry, and tragedy—artfully forms values by musing upon the goddess Memory who is her mother. We do not need to form our remembrances into art, as the painter Grandma Moses did in her old age, or into a novel, as Giuseppe di Lampedusa did in his. We need only to follow Memory’s daughters, musing over our memories and noticing how they take on significant shapes.
~ James Hillman. The Force of Character: And the Lasting Life .
Alongside this metaphysical transformation, Greek rational thought broke away from magic thought processes, and symbolically transferred the center of creative power from the female womb to the male brain (symbolized by Athene’s birth from the forehead of Zeus), creating the great Western cultural distortion that is still with us today, by giving greater value to culture than to nature, to the abstract Idea than to concrete Life itself.
~Amaury de Riencourt. Woman and Power in History .
These illustrations are a way to in tune with “the female power again.” Intuition, illumination, and humor are a way to hold us on an alternative foundation or path.
A given for us females and a needed endeavor that must be taken by our male comrades. Most importantly for them. If we dare to have a chance in these dark times.
An offbeat flopside comic adventure...
Art/ watercolors by Hudley Flipside aka Holly Cornell
Nine Muses as the source of “in-aspiration,” literally breathing in “I-deas” of Goddess-spirits within. The Muses were originally a triad-the primordial Triple Goddess. First of them was Mnemosyne, “Memory,” who made poets able to remember sacred sagas.
“The whole classical iconographic story of the transformation of the soul and the stages of illumination.”
Apollo is seated at the top and the three Graces are dancing beside him. In his hand is the lyre that plays the song of the universe, and besides that is the vessel of abundance. The inscription over Apollo’s head says,
“The energy of the Apollonian mind moves everywhere through the muses.”
The muses are the inspirers of spiritual knowledge, and the source of their energy is the Graces. The Graces are naked because nakedness represents disengagement form the limitations of the clothing of time and space, but the Muses who represent the message of this naked truth to the world. The Graces are three aspects of Aphrodite. Her inflection as the moving powers of the energy of the world.
Euphrosyne: Joy and the radiance that flows to the world through the qualities of the nine Muses.
Aglaea: Splendor, the energy returning to the deity.
Thalia: Abundance: that unites the two. When you have put your head in the mouth of the lion you hear the song of nature. Muse of bucolic poetry, the poetry of the nature around you, the sheep and the lion and the trees and the mountains. (3,4,5 The process of the rendering into the world the radiance of the Apollonian consciousness.)
The central figureis the great serpent whose tail is Cerberus. The three-headed dog who guards the underworld. Thalia is also the name of the ninth Muse. She is both below Cerberus’s head and she is also the central Grace above. Silent Thalia when she is under the threshold of the earth. “You can’t accept the bite of death and so you’re not hearing the song of the universe, and that why Thalia is silent.” We are afraid of the three heads of the dog. Fire of the sun, the present, yielding ourselves to the present. The wolf, the fear of the passage of time. The Dog which represents desire and hope for the future.
“What binds us is the present, past and future and so we’re bound to the ego. This is the image of the snake biting Peleus’s Achilles tendon;
“Let the serpent of death bite your heel, do hear the song of the universe and then the Muses sing…when you have died to your ego and rational consciousness there open the intuition, that is to say, you hear the song of the muses and this is the female power again.”
The first triad of the earth, the moon and mercury.
Selene the celestial body of the moon. The arrow held by Selene in the sphere of the moon is held down., pointing us to the earth and its history, while the caduceus of Hermes points upward, directing us to spiritual heights. Clio the muse of history and historical writing. Calliope the Muse the radiance of the eternal principle of epic poetry. (Mercury /Hermes)
The second triad is the transition through the sun door into the high sphere of purely spiritual experience.
Terpsichore the muse of dance. (Venus) Melpomene the muse of tragedy and tragic poetry. (The Sun) Erato the Muse of the art of erotic poetry. (Mars)
The highest triad where we are released from bondage to matter and death.
Euterpe the Muse of Flute song. (Jupiter /Zeus) Polyhymnia the Muse of choral sacred song. (Kronos) Urania the Muse of astronomy. (The heaven of the fixed stars)
Practica Musicae, Franchinus Gaffurius, Interpreted by Joseph Campbell from his book Goddesses, Mysteries of the Feminine Divine.
The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets by Barbara G. Walker
Also, today I am adding another most important source. “The Practica Musicae of Franchinus Gafurius” (First published in Milan in 1406)
The images contained in this book inspired my renderings. I was amazed at what I found and so started my journey.
“The High Renaissance in northern Italy was a crucial period in the development of the music of western civilization. The Pythagorean definition of interval in terms of precise mathematical ratio concepts of tuning, the controversy between ration and the “errant” senses…. helped bridge the gap between music as a philosophical science and music as a secular art. “
I include here images from this book. “…evolved both from ancient and medieval tradition and from the demands of performance in the late fifteenth century.”
Original source is acknowledged here with great joy…. the ancient past, the present…. it is amazing how we humans enjoy getting to know our soul, history, inspiration, astrology, philosophy, astronomy, alchemy, science and dare I say music ?
If she laid her egg sack, which she most likely has, I have not seen her. Every year she comes and I paint her image, or take her picture. From the pool mesh fence I take her and let her crawl over my shoulders. This year only she indirectly shows herself. A floating exoskeleton on top of clear pool water, or images from friends. Her Praying Mantis tree with the beautiful purple anarchy flowers are as a waterfall and arbor waiting for her return.
She will be golden green, large and graceful now. She facing death. I wear her tattoo on my left wrist. The purple anarchy flower. Last night at a local club again she told me that I was at the right time and place. I was meant to be here, even though she was not. The leather jacket with silver studs addressed me.
The young man stood in front of me. There splashed upon his back, drawn and painted, is her anarchy flower. Holding up my wrist I knew it to be true. I tapped the young tall man on the shoulder and showed him the image. He acknowledged it and the music blew through and around us. The longitude and latitude the continuity of life. It was all meant to be, I was where I was meant to be…. but she was not there.
Insights and notes through the creative “thinking stings” from The Eranos lecture series; The Creative Pattern In Primitive Africa by Laurens van der Post
There is a part of our spirit to which this voice of Mantis, speaking from an age of stone to an age of men with hearts of stone, commands us with the authentic tone of eternal renewal..” Pg. 40
I am in the process of reflecting on the lecture, The Creative Pattern In Primitive Africa by Laurens van der Post. The lecture speaks of the Bushmen of the Kalahari desert and their ancient mythologies that happen to include Praying Mantis as their own “Spirit of Creation.”
The Bushmen worshiped the Mantis and consulted him as an oracle. Pg 21.
I include in this post, from the lecture, a poem / lament “by a father of a bushman that lived over a hundred years ago… he was a rainmaker and a magician.” Pg. 38
People were those who
Broke for me the string
The place became like this to me,
On account of it,
Because the string was that which broke for me.
The place does not feel to me,
As the place used to feel to me,
On account of it.
The place feels as if it stood open before me,
Because the string has broken for me,
The place does not feel pleasant to me,
On account of it.
What is interesting to me is though Laurens van der Post naturally brings and weaves the Bushmen and Wolfgang von Goethe together in comparison as to the writing of their particular styles of poetry, I take it further by placing it in the continuity of music which highlights this post in a delightful way. An essence of what this brings together and what it very well means. I came upon a connection or “thinking string’ between Wolfgang von Goethe and the German band Kraftwerk.
The “thinking strings.” This is the process of reconnecting the “thinking strings.” A continuity of thoughts, dreams, magic, “stories from the wind” and life .
Listen to the music and read the poetry. I am asking for the feelings that it generates in you. It will provoke you. My hopeful goal is to tie the “thinking strings” together again and to find what may have been lost, which is the spiritual beauty of the Bushmen. The Bushmen are the foundation of this Lecture by Laurens van der Post. Reading it has had a profound effect on my life. I also wait for the “stories of life before and beyond the moment .”
The Bushmen, Goethe, Laurens van der Post and the Praying Mantis.
The Mantis will sit in an attitude of extreme reverence and contemplation, his head turned sometimes slightly on side as if he were waiting…for the wind to come from far beyond the mountains on the other side of the desert to bring him a story of life before and beyond the moment. …~ Pg. 22.
An English translation:
The sun is chanting his ancient song In contest with the brother spheres Rolling with thunder steps along Down the predestined course of years