Thursday, September 19, 2013

Autumn Equinox (Temple of the Goddess)

Goddess Saraswati on her delicate veena mounted on her swan offering wisdom
Autumn Equinox 2013
Rev. Xia, Temple of the Goddess (Sabbat)
Ritual story telling (T.O.G.)
The Wheel of the Year spins, and we come together to honor the turning of the seasons and the Earth's life cycles. We open our arms to welcome new beginnings and a year filled with wondrous possibilities. We gather at Autumn Equinox to give thanks for blessings, claim the spark of creativity and the fire of inner wisdom from the Goddess Sarasvati. We seek wisdom and creativity to discern the direction along our divine path.
For Pagans, teachings are found in nature, earthly seasons, natural cycles, and the cosmos -- all of which are in a constant state of flux

We have no fixed Christian Bible, Jewish Torah, or Hindu Bhagavad Gita. But in nature we find the reflections and lessons for how to grow, live consciously, and create the life we wish. To that end rather than emphasize need, we express a desire for change. Inevitably there are new beginnings, new directions to follow. For Pagans that is a given. There is a clarion call for continual renewal.
Goddess Saraswati
What we are bringing to our ritual-theatrical celebrations in 2013 are mythic lessons about standing at the crossroads of new directions and discerning through wise, contemplative choices which direction, which new path to take.
This year we will explore the tools we need to move forward with courage down paths not yet trodden, consciously choosing new directions life is offering. It is a fertile subject, and we are excited to be opening ourselves artistically and spiritually (and perhaps sexually) to this mythic theme and the possibilities within it.

Vasilisa the Brave and her doll (intuition)
This year our mythic guide is Vasilisa the Brave, who ushers us through our seasonal rituals and myths in 2013. She comes from the Slavic mythic tradition, a young heroine who journeys in search of wisdom, knowledge, on a quest for truth and assistance. Before beginning her journey, Vasilisa is given a doll by her mother; it represents intuition. We each carry it as a guide on our own quest throughout the year. 

Vasilisa's special doll offers wisdom and encourages her to trust her as a source of inner wisdom. She is told to seek the Wise Woman, the Shaman in the woods, whose myths and stories will guide her in her search. Will Vasilisa the Brave find what she is searching for? Come and find out on Saturday night.

The Wise Woman's Autumn myth 
Vedic Goddess Saraswati on her mount with her enchanting veena instrument
The story of Vasilisa is a modern retelling of the story of Saraswati, goddess of knowledge, music, arts, science, and the free flow of wisdom, creativity, and consciousness.

She is the Goddess of the River and one of the major figures in the Vedic pantheon, the Mother of the Vedas ("Knowledge Books" of the ancient Indus Valley Civilization) preserved by the Brahmins in India.
Saraswati is often pictured as luminous, shining as brightly as the Moon, often with eight arms, each hand holding a symbol of her power: trident, conch, pestle, bow, arrow, bell, discus, and plow. 

Mounted on her white swan, a symbol of purity and discernment, Saraswati plays the music of love and life on a stringed instrument called the veena. A goddess of grace, filled with the abiding confidence of deep wisdom, she offers followers true knowledge, symbolized by a beautiful white lotus.

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