By Phoenix of Elder Mountain – Doris of Greek mythology is an Oceanid, her name represents the bounty of the sea as she is a daughter of Oceanus and Tethys. Doris was mother to the fifty ‘Nereids’ including Thetis, who is was mother of Achilles and Amphitrite. The ‘Sea Nymphs’ are the three thousand daughters of the Titans Oceanus and Tethys, and each are a spirit guardian of a particular Spring, Pond, Lake, River, Sea, Rain and Clouds.
Nymphs and Nereids are not human, but water spirits as spirit guardians of nature. As humans we tell stories and put our humanness onto their natural or celestial nature, that is called mythology and folk tales. Through the journey of humankind over thousands of years, they have been portrait by artists as young maidens. But its wise to remember that they are spirit guardians of water, especially if you are fond of doing ceremony with water.
Doris when not associated with a god, is considered the fertility of the Ocean, of the rich fishing-grounds found at the mouths of any rivers where fresh water mingled with the brine of the ocean.
Being an Oceanid meant she is the Spirit Guardian where the Ocean and River meet.
Her name is derived from two words:
Dôron meaning the “gift” or “abundance”
Zôros meaning the “pure” and “unmixed”
Zôros was often used to describe fresh water in terms of the pure soul of a woman (enlightened in todays terms), and from this derived words such as zôrua “the transference of flowing water” or the purification processes of the living source (within) and zôrux “water conduit” which meant the connection to the source.
The Sea Nymph Okyrhoe “swift running and fast flowing”
Okyrhoe’s father was Chiron, wisest of the Horse clan (Centaurs) and her mother was the water nymph Chariklo. Okyrhoe main gift of healing and prophecy, both waking and dreaming. In one of the myths, Chiron was entrusted by Apollo to care for a baby named Aesculapiu and so he brought the child to his cave. Okyrhoe came out to greet him, and upon seeing the child burst forth into his prophecy:
“Grow strong, dear boy, healer of all the world. Often to you, Men shall owe health and life, and yours shall be the rites of the departed souls. And, though you dare this once in heaven’s despite, Jove’s bolt will thwart that gift a second time. You, now divine, shall be a lifeless corpse, and from a corpse become divine again, and twice born, you shall renew your destiny and fate.”
In this, she predicted that the baby would grow up to be one of the greatest healers able to bring the dead back to life (the dead karmic soul aspects) or what is termed transformational healing today, death and rebirth medicines. But in doing this, he would eventually anger the gods, who would strike him down and yet even within that, the Fates who were stronger than any God, would bring him back to life, and thus he would be reborn.
Okyrhoe was a Prophet, but the ruling men of the day had used maidens gifts for their own advancement in the building of their kingdoms and were punished if it didn’t serve these ruling classes. If she broke the rules, she suffered for it. One day, she predicted that her father, would be granted death by the other gods because the pain of a serpent’s venom would torment his soul (in order to heal it). But she only was able to speak part of the prophecy:
“And from her deepest heart sighed, and tears ran down her cheeks; she said: “The Fates halted my speech. I am allowed to say no more. What good was there in having learned this art, if now it only draws the wrath of men against me? Would I not be better off without the power to predict the course of days to come? I can already sense that they are stripping all my human semblance.” (Ovid’s Metamorphoses of woman’s story of their corruption by the new clans of pagan and religious men). She was a maiden, she was not an adult woman nor a grandmother, so she could not protect nor defend herself from the abuse.
Its wise to remember when working with mythology of the Goddess, that these ancient goddess names were born forth from the elements like fire, water, wind… they were not “human” they were the spirit of the elemental. Its also wise to remember that the Greeks (or any writers that were men in any tradition on earth around the 2nd bce to 2nd ce centuries), made symbolism of the real soul and its emotional experiences non-existent when equating it to emotional sensitivities and their deeper meanings of real human beings, especially women.
Ancient Theater back then like today, did bring forth the actions of emotional embodiment into a living process but it was during the destruction of the feminine, the female in cultures, and the soul which was then eventually overtaken by mind-body cultures. The dreaming tree died. But, it has been the artists, the philosophers, actors and women scholars over the ages who have not only brought back the symbolic meaning into the actions of our real soul and our emotional meaningful past (that was deemed either hysterical or over sterile) throughout history, but it was not.
Original mythologies spoken through oral traditions, folk stories and folk legends of women are centered around Symbolism, Dreaming and the Creative Art processes giving a real life communications to our soul’s life. The real living ‘waters’ or actions to the soul to our human story outside of pain and suffering and outside the perimeters of war, kingdoms and conquering which caused that suffering.
Source: Water Maiden (Nymph) painting by Yuriy Ivanovich Starodubov; Water Lantern on the Coast by Branislav Jovanović; http://www.zanestein.com (Ocyrhoe myths); Emanuela Comito