Zwezda Dnierca, Zwezda Wieczorniaia, and Zwezda Polnoca

The Zorya are the three Slavic Mythological Guardian (warrior) Goddesses, known as the Auroras. They guard and watch over the doomsday hounds (shadow people) who threatens to eat the constellations of the Great Bear and the Little Bear (Ursa Major & Minor). 

If the chain breaks loose, the earth’s time is said to end and completed and the dreaming time returns. The Auroras are the Morning Star, the Evening Star, and the Midnight Sun who are depicted as the goddesses Zwezda Dnierca, Zwezda Wieczorniaia, and Zwezda Polnoca.
 Zwezda Dnierca Zwezda Wieczorniaia and Zwezda Polnoca


Zwezda Dnieca – Maiden – Aurora of the Morning Star, a warrior maiden who opens the Gate of Heaven for the Sun every morning to emerge and bring the day light. She is the goddess of horses. A fully armed warrior Goddess, courageous in temperament in her youth.
 Slavs portrayed her each morning as the Sun rose just as the other pagan traditions of the world did with Venus. She is one who stands on the side and views death in battle, and her prayers were addressed as “Defend me, O Maiden, with your veil from the enemy, from the arquebus and arrow.

Zwezda Wieczoniaia – Mother – Aurora of the Evening Star, the great and powerful warrior Mother of the Zoryas. She closes the Gates of Heaven and Death each evening as the aged Sun God returns from across the skies. She is patron of protection and was, before the sun became too greedy, lineage to the shamanic cultures of her ancient people. The fullness of the night sky, its stars and star light, the falling and shooting stars of fate.

Zwezda Polnoca – Grandmother – The Midnight Sun, the Golden Baba (grandmother) of the Zoryas. She is the Zorya of death itself, keeper of the four seasons and one to whom the Sun God returns to die and who she gives life to again in the morning. She is death and rebirth, magic and wisdom, she the is the wise elder of the collective and the Night and the Sky Light and all its magic which belongs to nature. The warriors in battle fear her, for she judges not only their actions but also the wounds or bitterness in their heart. She opens the gates of the underworld to return them to sit and wait for their rebirth (reincarnation). She is closely related to Baba Jaga in prehistory (not pagan or religion’s views of her).

Evening Mountain

To read more about the Night Goddesses, Shamans who are Dreamers and the Mysticism of the Season of Night (Autumn and Winter) and the Midnight Sun: The Generous Invitation to the Marriage of the Spirit of the North’s Wisdom: “The Midnight Sun” Kolyadky and Auseklis

https://eldermountaindreaming.com/2015/12/30/a-a-slavic-winter-her-midnight-sun

Marzanna – Spring 2017

Our Elder Mountain’s video of the “Burning of Marzanna”, its a little long! Marzanna was put into the Magical pond here and she burned very rapidly, intense and fast this year, compared to last year. It was as if a wind whirl came, but there was hardly any wind to fuel the fire at that intensity. I then hung a Russian decorated Egg on our life tree afterwards… Spring is here and let the New Year (mother earths) year begin!

If you join us next year in making your Marzanna, the instructions are here and let us know your making one:

https://eldermountaindreaming.com/2016/03/21/folk-traditions-of-burning-marzanna-transformation-from-winter-to-spring-goddess/

~Phoenix

Slavic & Balkan Traditions: Marzanna (Polish), Morė (Lithuania), Morana (Czech, Bulgaria, Slovene, Serbian, Bosnia, Croatia), Morena (Slovak, Macedonia), Maslenitsa (Russia), Mara (Belarus, Ukraine), Maržena, Moréna, Mora or Marmora is a Baltic/Slavic goddess of the seasonal rites of death and rebirth of nature and woman. All prehistory goddesses associated with Grandmother stage of Winter’s death, then the rebirth of dreams and Maiden and Mother’s stages of Kostroma, Lada and Vesna represents Spring.

Mother of Goddess – Matushka Zemlia

Katya Filippova

Matushka Zemlia
Poem by Phoenix of Elder Mountain

Blessings upon me from the Mother of the Moist Earth from whom my Soul and the Children of the Souls are all born. I take your hand as you are the binding that weaves the river into matter, into me. There is nothing false about any Mother Goddess and all she contains, she is the great Creator of Life, the Supreme Goddess of Humanity.

Great Mother of the dark fertile earth, who shines the light of the Sun, so we can honor all of your blessings and abundance. We call to you great Mother (earth), your names are Mati Syra Zemila, Mokosh and Matka, who guides your wisest ones to speak with the animals, the plants or even a single leaf. The greatest magic of the flower and the clouds, the spirit of the wind and the water, the snow, rain, fog and mist all come forth into your mystical children.

We breath in this magic, we honor your gift of prophesy and reincarnation, the house where our souls rest. Mother in our heart, may we, your children bring Joy to your gardens of love.

Image of the Goddess and Daughter by Katya Filippova

Grandmother’s Ancestors – Siberian Effigies

Article By Olga Gertcyk for the Siberian Times

20,000 year old prehistoric effigies shows people of all ages and the larger figurines of the basic large grandmothers (which in all archeology are so inappropriately called Venus). These Siberian art effigies include men, women, teenagers and children, the new research shows. It’s true that in the past some of the woolly mammoth tusk carvings were known to be clothed as they were dressed for protection from the Siberian winter, and are possibly the oldest known images anywhere in the world of sewn fur clothing.

Figurine back

Siberian archeologist and historian Alexey Okladnikov in 1957, found the Paleolithic art from the Buret excavations in this collection. Carved of mammoth tusk, these female forms rested in the ‘moist and warm soil’ soaked by a recent night thunderstorm. Seemingly enchanted and using language veering from the strictly scientific into the lyrical, he hailed this figurine as ‘not a dead piece of long-vanished world, but something soulful and full of life’. Entranced by the ancient vision, he lauded her ‘narrow, Mongolian slanted eyes looking at us, the people of the twentieth century, mysteriously and even somewhat ironically.’

Siberian Venus

Map

Famous Mal’ta and Buret are located in about 25 kilometers from each other, close to Lake Baikal. In rich poetic vein, he continued:

Her face, carved so unexpectedly gentle and tender, had a barely noticeable smile. The feeling of vitality and mystery coming from this fragment of mammoth tusk was getting even deeper because the statuette radiated the warmth of a living creature as most likely all cultures ruled by women were.

It wasn’t yellow or brown, like dozens of ancient sculptures from mammoth tusks that lie behind the museum glass window. It was pink and almost warm, like a live human body. This is exactly how a piece of a fossil ivory looks, soaked with the millennial Earth’s juices.’ But now deeper study using modern technology has been conducted by Dr Lyudmila Lbova and trace analysis specialist Dr Pavel Volkov.

‘In the collection of Malta figurines, the overalls are more typical for small sculptures (those of 2-4 cm in height), depicting children.’ Picture: Lyudmila Lbova

And a striking new light has been cast on the Mal’ta and Buret figurines – found from the 1920s to the 1950s by the Angara River close to Lake Baikal in modern-day Irkutsk region. Notably, the research disputes the widely-held believe that some of the figures are nude.

‘There were many attempts to understand the idea of these figurines, and their symbolism,’ she said. ‘And there were many interpretations. Totally there are 40 known figurines found both on Mal’ta and Buret: we have (so far) studied 29 of them, using microscopes and macro shooting.


Figurines

She explained: ‘We worked with sculptures from the collections of the State Hermitage Museum at St Petersburg. First, we found out how these figurines were made and checked our conclusions with experiments. Some of the figurines are just work pieces, to the finished works. In other words, they are prototypes and ‘this allowed us to reconstruct all the steps in their creation.

‘Yet the most unexpected result was that we saw traces on the surface of the figurines that were not spotted earlier, as they are not visible to the naked eye, due to the ravages of time. These traces showed more details of clothes than we had seen previously: bracelets, hats, shoes, bags and even back packs.

Dr Lyudmila Lbova

Dr Lyudmila Lbova: ‘We decided to pay more attention to some material things, to study the surface, to understand how these figurines were made. This approach allowed us to reveal many interesting new details and review some ideas about these sculptures,’ she said. ‘Previously, there had been different approaches to the classification of these figurines, but the basic was a division into ‘dressed’ and ‘naked’. ‘Our research showed that all of them are more or less ‘dressed’. We saw the different types of hats, hairstyles, shoes and accessories, which were depicted with thin lines. The ancient masters used different techniques to highlight the different materials – fur, leather, and decorations.

Face close

‘In the realistic elements of clothing and hats are obviously seen the details of traditional outerwear of Nordic peoples. The most ‘popular’ outerwear on the figurines are fur overalls’ – similar to ‘kerkery as worn by Koryak children and women in the extreme east of Siberia. ‘In the collection of Malta figurines, the overalls are more typical for small sculptures (those of 2-4 cm in height), depicting children. Besides, all the figures dressed in overalls have a disproportionately large head.

Mikhail Gerasimov on excavations

Mikhail Gerasimov [the archaeologist who found the first figurines] on the excavations at Mal’ta in 1958. ‘Such proportions we see in children under 5 years old, dressed in overalls with high hoods. These sculptures show small childfren in clothes typical for them and in the right proportions. ‘On other sculptures, we can see overalls made of guts, probably from fish or seals, which women wore in summer along with short parkas. We see similar ones in the culture of the indigenous people who live in the Russian north-east, like the Koryaks and Itilmens.’

Figurine's head


Face

The most common are these fur hats that cover the head, neck, ears, cheeks and chin.

The detail spotted on these figurines is intriguing.  ‘Most interesting are the hats and hairstyles. There are fur ‘hats’ meaning a hat that covers the head and shoulders – ‘hats and hoods.

On the figurines ‘we can also see the bags and in one case an  outline of a traditional back pack with two straps. It has not so much detail, and it is not clear if this is male or female, yet the proportions of bodies show that this is definitely a younger person.

‘All the figurines were found within the living facilities of ancient settlements, some of them even in ritual places in the home: they were covered with mammoth scapula bone or sprinkled with ocher.’

‘What we can say for sure is that these realistic details of clothes, accessories, hairstyle clearly show that ancient masters made the figurines of some real people, maybe their relatives. I strongly doubt that these were the images of abstract goddesses or spirits’ in the sense often used.

Source: Dr Lyudmila Lbova is a researcher and Dr Pavel Volkov is a leading researcher both at the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, part of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.  The research was conducted by the Laboratory ‘Interdisciplinary Study of Primitive Art of Eurasia’, which is a joint project of Novosibirsk State University’s Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography and University of Bordeaux. The Laboratory is based in Novosibirsk State University. Pictures: Kunstkamera Museum, Lyudmila Lbova and Jokersy/Panoramio

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A Rabbit in the Egyptian Moon?

Hare and Rabbit are two of my helpers as a shaman, not only in the waking, but also in my dreams as night. I have a Lakota friend who is an (animism) Jack Rabbit and very powerful, and has helped me a few times. I had a lot of rabbit symbolism appear in my group journeys on the last Winter Solstice and when I ran across some Egyptian Rabbit art it had caught my soul eye.

Fattah Hallah ABDE18

 

Apophis (Apop) was the Egyptian deity who embodied Chaos and whose animism form was a large Golden Serpent associated with various frightening natural events such as unexplained darkness of a solar eclipse, storms and earthquakes and linked to the northern sky, which was a place that the Egyptians considered to be cold, dark and dangerous. He was also associated with the Goddess Taweret during his era of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom. He was also the enemy of the God Ra, which associates him with an earlier era of pre-Ra era. The “Book of Apophis” is a collection of magical spells from the Newer Kingdom which were supposed to repel or contain the serpent.

Every night Apephim (Apep) sought to destroy Ra’s Sun Boat, the “Boat of Millions of Years” as it passed through Duat, the underworld. In some stories Apep waited for Ra in a mountain in the west called Bakhu, and in others he lurked just before dawn in the Tenth Region of the Night. If Apep were to defeat Ra, darkness (the Goddess) would prevail. One of Ra’s forms was a Rabbit, which symbolically makes no sense, for rabbit is one who makes a sacrifice, not an all powerful creator, god of all gods. Where did this rabbit appear then from prior symbolism? As we can see, the Egyptian Ra the rabbit, is slaying the serpent (snake), but there had to be an earlier symbolism connecting these two, and there is:
 
Wenet The Swift One. Unnut, Lady of Unu
By © Linda Iles – Mirror of Isis work, her article shows us the earlier versions of the Great Serpent Goddess of Egyptian prehistory: 
 
ancient Egyptian amulet, symbol of the goddess WenetTo the ancient Egyptians, Deity permeated everything.  Every creature, every thing we can see, hear, smell, taste and touch had correspondence with a Deity in some form or other.  For the ancient Egyptians, the act of creation wasn’t the result of the handiwork of a single Deity.  Creation came about through an initiating force springing from a primal Divine Being which then took the form of a plethora of Gods and Goddesses, who were the manifestations of the building blocks of life.  In their cosmology, divine essence underlay all that we as human beings experience with our senses in the physical world, and all that we experience in the unseen world of spirit. 
 
The universe was therefore a conscious whole in which all the parts were interrelated, a concept which underlies modern hermetic theory.  Traditionally, it is the god Thoth who is attributed with hermetic theory and several other bodies of sacred knowledge, which include architecture, medicine and alchemy.  And it is to the city of Thoth, called Hermopolis Magna by the Greeks and Khemenu, ‘The Town of Eight’ by the ancient Egyptians that a search to find information about the ancient Egyptian goddess Wenet begins.
 
In early dynastic times this main cult center of Thoth, honored several goddesses and gods. The Ennead of Hermopolis included four pairs of creator gods and goddesses:  the male deities in these pairs shown either as frogs or as frog-headed, the female deities shown as serpents or as serpent-headed.  Along with these four pairs of creator deities there were two other very ancient deities, a baboon god who was subsequently assimilated by the god Thoth at a very early period, and the hare goddess Wenet.
 
The pairs of frog and serpent deities gave the city of Thoth its name, but it was the hare goddess, Wenet, whose name was given to that whole province of ancient Egypt, called a Nome, in which the city of Khemenu was located.  The Nome of Wenet, the province of Hermopolis, was therefore “District of the Hare.”  Wenet was both the patron goddess of the area of Wenu, the 15th Upper Egyptian Nome and of the city of Thoth which is more commonly referred to as Hermopolis. 
 
These two deities have some interesting similarities and are often paired in ancient Egyptian symbolism and art, which will be discussed further along in this article.  Thoth is the scribe of the gods, credited with the invention of writing by the ancient Egyptians.  Curiously, it is a hare deity in Mayan belief who invented writing.
 
bl buns
The Hare in Ancient Egypt
 
References to the hare are plentiful in ancient Egyptian mythology and literature.  The god Osiris, husband of Isis, was sometimes called Un-nefer, and portrayed with the head of a hare.  As Un-nefer, Osiris was sacrificed to the Nile each year to facilitate the annual flooding which brought renewal of the land and crops. Un-nefer has been translated variously as “The Good Being” or “The One Who Brings Good into Being” or “Beautiful Renewal.” 
 
Wenet’s male counterpart, Wenenu (or Unnu), was sometimes identified as a form of Osiris or Re.  The hare also appears as a standard hieroglyphic phonetic sign.  This hieroglyph which is called “Wn” symbolized the very essence of life itself, and depicts a hare over a single ripple of water, the very substance from which life first appeared out of the primordial waters of Nun in ancient Egyptian creation myths.   
 
Wenet and Thoth, in their animal forms of hare and baboon respectively, share some interesting similarities.  The hare was often depicted as a messenger for Thoth, and the hare was shown greeting the dawn in ancient Egyptian mythology and art, just as the baboon was.  The baboon in nature has been documented from ancient times as patiently sitting and watching for the sun to rise over the horizon at dawn. 
The Cape Hare, the variety of hare which is the particular sacred animal of Wenet, has a distinctive yellow chest and white abdomen, which may have lent something to this animals association with greeting the sun at dawn.  The Cape Hare was the subject of amulets found in tombs and tomb paintings.  The Cape Hare is included under the scientific name of Lepus capensis, with the European Hare and Brown Hare.  Lepus capensis is the animal upon which the Easter Bunny is based.
 
impressed pottery vessels at Merv, Turkmenistan in twelfth century; polychrome pottery from Egyptm Syria, now in KuwaitDuring the Middle Kingdom, faience figurines of the Cape Hare were occasionally deposited in tombs – perhaps their legendary fecundity came into play as a symbol of fertility and thus ultimately of renewal.  The earliest surviving ancient Egyptian amulets in the form of a hare come from the late Old Kingdom to First Intermediate Period.  They were typically made of carnelian and ivory.  The earliest surviving example of a Cape Hare in Egyptian art to date, comes from an elaborately decorated votive schist ‘Hunters’ Palette’ which features a desert hunting scene from the Late Predynastic Period.  This piece is on display at the British Museum. 
 
During the Eighteenth Dynasty, Cape Hares appear as popular subjects among offerings pictured on tomb-chapel walls to nourish the deceased.  One very beautiful example appears on a fragment of a wall painting from the tomb-chapel of Nebamun at Thebes.  In the New Kingdom images of the hare were used as decorative motifs, particularly on items used for cosmetics and personal grooming.  Dating from the Late Dynastic and Ptolemaic periods several finely cast bronze votive statuettes have been found, and a great number of small green-blue faience amulets which indicate the revered status of the hare as an amulet during these times.
 
The hare was credited with powers of regeneration probably because of its well known fecundity.  Its swiftness of movement and keenness of senses were seen as desirable defenses against forces of darkness. An amulet in the form of a hare amulet could be worn in life to endow its wearer with fertility, in death with the hope of rebirth, and both in life and in death for purposes of protection. 
 
Behavior, Characteristics and Habitat
 
rabbitOne of the best ways to get a grasp of the functions of a particular goddess or god is to study the habits and characteristics of the animal that is held sacred to them.  The ancient Egyptians studied the behavior of animals around them, and like other cultures in India, China and Tibet, they believed that the behavior of certain animals manifested an aspect of deity.
 
First of all, some of you may not know the differences between a rabbit and a hare.  I didn’t!  I have found that many animals we normally call ‘rabbits’ are actually a variety of hare.  Jackrabbits are a perfect example of this.  The primary differences between hares and rabbits are the hare is generally larger with longer ears and has more powerful hind legs. The hare lives in open habitat and runs to escape predators rather than hiding in the woods as the rabbit does. The hare does not build nests for its young which are born fully furred with their eyes open, an attribute called precocial. The rabbit does build nests and its young are born hairless with their eyes closed. 
 
The hare takes readily to the water, where it swims well.  Hares are remarkably fecund, mating when scarcely a year old.  The female can bring forth several broods in one year.  Usually two young are born at a time and sheltered in a clump of grass or under a bush. In the early stages of life they do not seem to have a body scent, as they are passed over by predators. They grow and develop quickly, becoming weaned and independent at about one month old.
  
The Cape Hare lives in open, dry country from coastal plains to mountains, open fields of grasslands, and open areas of sparse woodlands, that contain low grass for feeding and grass stands for cover. They can inhabit many habitats that are too arid or open to support other varieties of hares.  The Cape Hare eats grass, corn, fruit, clover, wheat and other green plants in the summer. In winter it eats buds and twigs. Their resting places are shallow depressions in the ground which are known as ‘forms’ because they are shaped by the animal’s body. 
A Cape Hare will return to its ‘form’ day after day, and will sleep lying in exactly the same position: it is only when under stress that it may take alternative refuge in the underground burrow of some other animal. The Cape Hare is predominately nocturnal, after dark it emerges to feed on grasses and sometimes on other plants. The upper incisors are long and chisel-like and they grow throughout the hare’s lifetime.
 
Their behavior when they are angry includes grinding of teeth, drumming of forefeet and stamping of hind feet. When warning others a Cape Hare makes a grating sound with its teeth or screams when distressed.  When disturbed, the Cape Hare will suddenly leap up and dart off using a zigzag motion, sharp turns, and back tracks frequently to evade a predator. When chased, it can run 30 mph with bursts of speed up to 45 mph.  It also makes very sharp turns and back tracks frequently when chased, just as it tends to do when disturbed from resting or hiding in it’s ‘form’.  Leaps of 4′ to 12′ leap have been observed.
 
Cape Hares occur throughout Africa, as well as many parts of the Middle East and Asia. The Cape hare is native of all non-forested areas of Africa, Europe and Asia to central China. It was introduced in New York in the 1890s and now inhabits open areas of New York as well as parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and southeastern Ontario.
 
So what does this tell us of the Goddess Wenet?  Lets read the ancient texts and see if these “hare facts” can help in interpretation.
 
The Hare Goddess Wenet
 
Wenet was depicted either as a hare, or as a woman with a standard bearing a recumbent hare on her head, or as a woman with the head of a hare.  According to Plutarch the Egyptians venerated the hare on account of its swiftness and keen senses, but the hare’s form was also taken by certain other deities who had associations with the Otherworld.  In one of the vignettes of the Elysian Fields from the Egyptian Book of the Dead, a hare-headed god, a snake-headed god, and a bull-headed god sit side by side; a hare-headed deity also guards one of the Seven Halls in the Underworld.  Wenet was sometimes depicted in the form of a snake, a creature with clear Otherworld associations.
 
54c94c52b1da9b57901c345f4348508bIn the Chapter of the Egyptian Book of the Dead titled, “Of the Four Blazing Flames which are Made for the Khu,” taken from the Papyrus of Nu, Sheets 26 and 27, there is a rubric which mentions Wenet by a more archaic spelling of her name, Unnut.  In this rubric Nu records “And you shalt write down these writings in accordance with the things which are found in the books of the royal son Heru-ta-ta-f, who discovered [them] in a hidden chest – now they were in the handwriting of the god himself – in the Temple of the goddess Unnut, the Lady of Unnu (Hermopolis) during his journey to make an inspection of the temples…” 
 
This furthers Wenets association with the Otherworld, for according to this text the spells for the Book of the Dead were found in her temple at Hermopolis, written out in scrolls by the god Thoth himself.  In the Papyrus of Ani is a hymn to Ra in which is found the following passage:  “The goddess Net-Unnut is stablished upon thy head; and her uraei of the South and the North are upon thy brow; she taketh her place before thee.”  As Net-Unnut or Nebt-Unnut, the goddess Wenet is a Guardian of the Underworld, titled “Lady of the Hour.”
 
A portion of spell 17 of the Book of the Dead reads  “…Who is he? ‘Swallower of Myriads’ is his name, and he dwells in the Lake of Wenet…”  This takes on a whole new meaning when one realizes that hares can swim, coupled with the fact that creation first came about in the watery abyss of Nun, out of which the primordial mound of creation first appeared, from which the newly born god manifested. 
To dwell in the Lake of Wenet given the well known fecundity of the Cape Hare means to live renewed, revitalized, to be reborn, to live, forever and ever renewed after death, as the god Atum-Re.  Spell 17 does go on to identify the dweller in the Lake of Wenet as Atum-Re, the creator of all, whose father is said to be Nun, because he rose out of the ‘watery abyss.’
 
Tomb-chapel of Nebamun Thebes, Egypt Late 18th Dynasty, around 1350 BCE

This is further emphasized in other passages which mention Wenet in the Book of the Dead.  Spell 149 describes the ‘Mounds of the West’ (14 in number) which the spirit travels through to be reborn, rejuvenated while in the Otherworld or Duat:
“…The twelfth mound; green.  Isdjedet in the West.  N. says:  As for that Mound of Wenet which is in front of Rosetjau, its breath is fire, and the gods cannot get near it, the spirits cannot associate with it; there are four cobras on it whose names are ‘Destruction.’  O Mound of Wenet, I am the greatest of the spirits who are in you, I am among the Imperishable Stars who are in you, and I will not perish, nor will my name perish.  ‘O savoir of a god!’ say the gods who are in the Mound of Wenet.  If you love me more than your gods, I will be with you for ever…”  
Not only is the Mound of Wenet a site of sacred creative energy, the ability of the hare to elude destruction, makes Wenet, through her association with this animal a haven for the spirit, where it is rejuvenated on its journey through the Other world, a place where it cannot perish.
 
The Coffin Texts also mention Wenet.  Spell 47 reads
“…may Wenet make firm your head for you, may you receive a sceptre in the Bark of Night, may the roads of the Lord of All be shown to you.  Ho N! Raise yourself to life for ever!”  It is through the goddess Wenet that the deceased will attain strength (firmness of head) and the authority (a sceptre) to become established and live again in the Otherworld.
 
Spell 495 of the Coffin Texts reads:
“I extend my arm in company with Shu, I am released in company with Wenet.  I have fled with the Sistrum-player, I have reached the horizon as a great falcon, I have got rid of my impediment in the horizon, I have saved myself from the slayers…” 
Knowing what we do of the habits of the hare to elude its enemies, this passage corresponds this ability of the sacred animal of Wenet with a final victory of the deceased to rise above all difficulties to be reborn again in the horizon as the solar falcon. 
 
Spell 720 of the Coffin Texts states: 
“…I am a dawn-god.  The plumes tremble when Nut ascends, those who are in the storm tremble… my voice is (that of) Wenet; …I regard myself as a dawn-god…”  Remember that the hare has the capability to scream when distressed, and that the hare greets the dawn as a protective deity. 
Further on, near the end of the Coffin Texts, in Spell 942, 
“…when this goddess goes forth, having appeared as Re […] the Sole Lord…she has nothing which has been done against her in [this her name] of Wenet…”  It is as Wenet, appearing as the solar god Re, brilliant and shining forth with new life that the deceased finds renewal of life.
 
A strong resemblance to the ancient Egyptian role of Wenet in the spells of the Book of the Dead and the Coffin Texts also surfaces in the mythology of the Algonquin Indians of North America.  They believed that after death, their spirits traveled to a hare god known as Menabosho.  The hare was sacred to the goddess Freya and to Ostara, goddess of springtime.  This link with the goddess Ostara led to the modern day Easter Bunny. 
The Mongolians, Chinese, Japanese, and other Far Eastern peoples all held similar beliefs about the hare. Eros, god of sexual love, is sometimes represented carrying a hare, and the hare was a favorite animal of Aphrodite, goddess of love and beauty.  When a hare rested at the feet of the Virgin Mary it was a symbol of triumph over desires of the flesh.
 
“In many ancient civilizations the hare is a “lunar animal,” because the dark patches (maria, “seas”) on the surface of the full moon suggest leaping hares…. In Buddhist, Celtic, Hottentot and ancient Egyptian cultures as well, the hare was associated with the moon… known for it’s vigilance and for the myth of it sleeping with it’s eyes open.  The early Christian Physiologus mentions a further peculiarity of the hare:  with its shorter front legs, it can run fastest uphill, eluding its pursuers. It’s speed and vigilance, according to Plutarch (ce 46 – 120), have a “divine” quality…
A trickster figure, the hare outwits larger and stronger animals…For psychologically oriented symbologists, neither the speed nor the “timidity” of the hare is critical, but rather the rate at which it multiplies: this makes the animal a symbol of fertility and passionate sexuality.”  (Biedermann, ‘Dictionary of Symbolism’)
 
A Vision of Wenet
 
Beautiful Mother,
As the Light of Re illuminates Your Face,
Your Beauty enfolds my soul.
 
Swiftly runs Wenet, Lady of Wenu,
Between the Two Horizons.
Swiftly runs Wenet, Lady of Wenu,
Between the Adze of the North
And the Adze of the South.
I sing to You this day, Lady of Wenu,
That the Way will be opened
To all who seek You.
 
Beautiful Mother,
As the Light of Re
illuminates Your Face,
Your Beauty enfolds my soul.
 
The Goddess turns
and rises above me
Holding the two jars,
The Black and the White.
She anoints my mouth.
Sacred Words long unspoken
rush forth from my lips.
She anoints my heart.
Divine Light quivers and
bursts from my being.
 
I am reborn.
 
Beautiful Mother,
As the Light of Re
illuminates Your Face,
Your Beauty enfolds my soul.
 
Source: Artwork by Fattah Hallah Abde; Ancient Egyptian amulet, symbol of the goddess Wenet ; Tomb-chapel of Nebamun Thebes, Egypt Late 18th Dynasty, around 1350 BCE;via Linda’s webpage: http://mirrorofisis.freeyellow.com/id599.html; 

The Generous Invitation to the Marriage of the Spirit of the North’s Wisdom: “The Midnight Sun” Kolyadky and Auseklis

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By Phoenix of Elder Mountain, Edited by Sarah Burnt Stone – The Languages of  Symbolism is very deep, rich and very ancient and it is an art to be able to saturate yourself into it, and then test it in the actions of yours and other peoples lives. If writing is the invention of the language of the mind and all that comes with that… prior to history, symbolism was the language of the soul and all that comes with that.

kolyadkyIt is the root language of the empaths, the dreamers, the artists and the shamans which existed long before any creation of the runes, the alphabet or any written language and even the symbolism of paganism. The communications of our “subtle bodies” (our souls) or the “bones” is an “emotional” and energetic language expressed through the language of images, dreams, art, symbolism, imagination (manifestation of image) and intuitive energetic intelligence such as synchronicity and natural magic (nature).

It is our origin language, a dreamer indigenous language of our soul, who others call the “unconscious”. Some of us are conscious and work with our soul and that makes all the difference in understanding this life giving language.

Most people today do not concern themselves with any pre-religious or pre-pagan traditions, and why should they, these are grandmother and women’s traditions and for 7,000 years its been a teaching to corrupt and fear them inter-weaved together. But now that the next two ages come for the next 7,000 year cycle (Age of Aquarius and Age of Capricorn), women are no longer by the shift of consciousness of mother earth are bound to such laws and rules anymore.

But dreamers need to understand our empathic and old soul natures of prehistory for their own future. This is a path of a full spiritual journey (not just mind-body) and the thirst this lifetime starts from birth and lasts our whole entire life. In the beginning ages of the last 7,000 years it was body & soul (sun & moon), in the last 2,500 years it was body & mind (sun). Now we enter Soul & Nature again (Earth & Moon) and it is self understanding and reclaiming, first our human and its karma and then our nature (animism, celestial and elemental).

For most old souls it will just be a flexing of such reality, taking back what fairy tales and legends stole from us. Believing but not really believing (experiences) and to understand prehistory rites and movements with nature of symbolism, dreaming symbolism (not dream symbolism and there is a huge difference). And the subtle ritualistic art of dreamtime as a real language. 

My focus is on one of the symbols of my ancestors which is called the “Star” or what was in prehistory the “Midnight Sun” – its equaled to the ancient Swastika and Sauwastika but with dual doorways instead of single arms and doors. This has to do with the consciousness (of mysticism) called nature herself, connected to the equinoxes, the winter solstice traditions before paganism was based on nature’s teachings, not human. That is why its only retained in art and artistic expressions.

The Auseklis – Midnight Sun, Goddess of the Dawn (now called a Star) and in Ukraine traditions, its called the Mysteries of Kolyadky…

This Midnight Sun (or Star as its called), is the The Season of Night which is Autumn and Winter. It is also the Season of Fire – Spring and Summer. I live within this prehistory dreamers language in my shaman’s life and my healing wok, dreaming life and each moon cycle and how it effects dreams, dreaming and dreamtime.

AuseklisOne of the symbols sacred to the Latvian Balkan, is the Auseklis – The Midnight Sun, Goddess of the Dawn (now called a Star). In Ukraine tradition, its called the Mysteries of Kolyadky. The Aurora (Auseklis) is the Midnight Sun, Goddess of the Dawn is the oldest of all Slavic and Balkan countries symbols and its meaning, even older than all the pagan gods. It has magical meanings in Latvian folklore of the ancient understanding of the secrets of magical nature, the magical self in relationship to nature. If your bed sheets are covered with this symbols then bed sheet protect though the symbol the dreamer from any shadow or evil wandering souls in the vicinity. The symbol is also associated with ancient medicine, the straight or turned cross style. Auseklis is used commonly in folk and peasant usage of the Latvian culture. This is the most important ancient symbol to them, which is with the references of the night. In Latvia, its the Night Sun or Midnight Star as it is associated with Winter, the Winter Solstice and the protection from evil and shadows of the underworld.

From Dawn Maid and Sun Maid: Celestial Goddesses among the Proto Indo Europeans by Miriam Robbins Dexter Antioch University, she writes: “The Indo-European Dawn Goddess appears in Northern Indo-European, particularly in Baltic folk songs. Proto-Indo-European Aus-tero gave rise to several cognate dawn goddesses, including Lithuanian AuSra, Latvian Auseklis, Old Prussian Ausca, and Roman Aurora. Throughout these folklore and mythology, the Goddess of the Dawn is often perceived as a woman and the Latvian daiqas, or folk songs, excuses are made for the late arrival of the dawn goddess.

Kolyadki sun and mKolyadki Winter Midnight Sun with moon and GoddessLatvian folk songs are very creative in their excuses for the goddess of the dawn: Where is the Auseklis of the Morning, Whom I did not see rising? Auseklis [is] in Germany; She is sewing velvet skirts. The Lithuanian dawn goddess AuSra is often called AuSrelt (dear dawn), employing the very common Lithuanian diminutive of endearment. She is also called AuSrint a form which utilizes the adjectival suffix; AuSrinis means ‘morning’ and AuSrint Zvaigzdt is the ‘morning star. The Latvian Goddess of Dawn in Baltic myth, was the Mother of Mēness The Moon God.

The moon was either married to Saule, the Sun Goddess, or her daughter, Saules Meita. In another folk song, Saule has given her daughter to Ausekis’ son. The Slavic Goddess of the Dawn, Zarya is not linguistically cognate with her Baltic sisters. The moon god, according to Gimbutas, was unstable; not only did he fall in love with the daughters of the sun, in Latvian myth, he also married Saule herself and fell in love with Ausrine as well.”

Perhaps the most curious of the Kolyadki is a Carpathian song in which we find the following description:

Once there was neither heaven nor earth,
Heaven nor earth, but only blue sea, and
in the midst of the sea there were two oaks,
There sat there, two birds,
Two birds on the two oaks,
and they began to take
counsel among themselves,
to take counsel and to say…

“How can we create the world?”

Let us go to the bottom of the sea,
Let us bring thence fine sand,
Fine sand and blue stone.

We will sow the fine sand,
We will breathe on the blue stone.
From the fine sand the black earth,
the cool waters, the green grass.

From the blue stone the blue heavens,
the blue heavens, the bright sun,
the bright sun, and the clear moon,
The clear moon and all the stars.

~ Afanasief, Poeticheskya Vezzyeniya Slavan

We find a similar motif of Aurora in the primitive Sardinia, Italian language that Aurora, which is equivalent to Greek Ἕως, the rosy-fingered goddess, is no coincidence the Romans made it the hypostasis of gold (aurum > Aurora) for the splendor with which it appears. But aurum > Aurora was only a paronomasia, as the Latins had lost its oldest meaning, which turns out even in the Sumerian language, from a’u ‘one who drags ships, boats’ + ru ‘structure ‘+ ra ‘sun, splendor of the sun’: A’u-ru-ra which means: ‘She who pulls the boat of the Sun’ or life giving sun of the waking human life. Ἕως has the same origin, by Sumerian e ‘take out’ + u ‘sleep’, meaning ‘(the one who) brings out of sleep (the Sun)’.

Aurora is the Sun Goddess, but when the patriarch began to change all mythology into their new mythology she became the wife or consort and the male ended up in a higher status as the all life giving Sun God and from him all the gods rose, like Helios, Apollo, Mars, etc. The Aurora or Auseklis – The Midnight Sun, Goddess of the Dawn has magical meaning in Latvian folklore and it means you understand the secrets of magical nature, the magical self in relationship to nature. If your bed sheets are covered with this symbols then bed sheet protect though the symbol the dreamer from any shadow or evil wandering souls in the vicinity. The symbol is also associated with ancient medicine, the straight or turned cross style.

Latvian Auseklis at her root, is a Celestial Goddess, collective rather than personal goddess or woman self-hood, and she and her symbol has much power, but like any ancient symbol, you do not get its power, you must match its power within your life and that is a long and painful journey. No symbol is power given, it must be completely earned and most times its given power by peoples shadow (their need for attention, jester or magic tricks for attention, the ego, false strength of the warrior etc). These are all superficial and not in harmony with the feminine and goddess from which they were birthed. The symbol represents the complex eight-sided star, which must be drawn in one continuous line without lifting your hand to receive the benefit of his blessings.

Simplest form of star is simple cross which symbolizes as elements, the Fire and the Light which are basically the same thing, called Spirit. Pagan Latvians believes that magical rituals can be performed with this symbol and it often has a great meaning to those who use it in a sacred way

During late paganism eras (after the 8th-10th century), with the influences of Christian and Catholic Religions, the Midnight Star has been called Koliada in Ukraine and other Slavic and Balkan pagan winter traditions, which is most important as ancient winter ceremonies and celebrations and then later into Christmas and Christian Religions. The Midnight Sun (star) as a simple art image today, in the basic Christmas ritual.

 

Shaman Women, Ukraine, by Illustrator Vera Pavlova

The main attribute of Christmas and the Mysteries of Kolyadky is since ancient times, as it was pagan octagonal star, called by the ancestors as Sura (from al-atar “white or heat-combustible”) in Ukraine. Star-Sura is a Ukrainian eight pointed star which represents the eight major cycles of nature within the four seasons. Its characteristics are within folk ornamentation, especially the Hutsul. Overall, this symbol is found in every area of folk art in Ukrainian pysanky, Ukrainian embroidery, folk carving, etc. Esoteric, Sura is oktahramu: projection diamond (heavenly light) to the square (the material world) and their mutual peresikannya. It connects all corners of the world and marks the absolute balance, harmony and balance, making a powerful healing effect.

The very high star attached to a pole firmly and rays swirled around the axis using the power and extended in lace from him. On one side of the star depicting the human face or the sun, the second – kolyadky scene. Inside sometimes inserted a candle, creating a sort of “magic lantern”. In making this week the stars came from the time because their produce in advance.
Belarusian  Каляда, Kalada, Kalyada

Bosnian, Croatian, Czech, Slovak, Slovene koledsa
Bulgarian, Macedonian, Serbian Коледа, Коледе
Kashubian kòlãda
Latvian an older ancient symbol Auseklis
Lithuanian Kalėdos, Kalėda
Polish Kolęda
Old Polish Kolenda
Old Church Slavonic Колѧда
Romanian Kolinda
Russian  Коляда, Kolyada
Ukraine  Коляда, Kolyadá

23To understand any spiritual teaching of earth at its root, one must walk backwards into the past and prehistory of self, not the present or knowledge and definitely not forward or the future. To understand ancient cultures rituals before 3,000 bce (grandfather’s patriarch), information can be found only in three ways: 1. Visions and Out of Bodies, 2. Peasant folktales, folk songs and 3. Ancient art and pieces of remaining Folk art. One question is: “Were the origins of the Winter Solstice Ceremonies Dances or Songs or both” ?Koleda is always celebrated with Carolers, but the root of the term “Carol” actually refers to “dancing” rather than its common connotation regarding song or singing. In Old French, “carole” is translated to “dance.” Similarly, in both Latin (choraula) and Greek (choraules) the root of the term means “to dance with the accompaniment of flute”. Thus caroling can actually be traced to more archaic traditions of solstice ritual dance much like kukeri, the bear dances or mummer’s purification dances (in some purer villages) in its shamanic roots.

In Pre-Christian eras, Northern Europeans and Eastern Europeans would travel in order to join together to sing and dance in honor of the sacredness of the Winter Solstice. Although after the 13th century most carols centered around religion or pagan celebrations. These dances were directly birthed from the sacred shamanic dances of women that occurred during the winter moons of the time of peace when the oceans became calm and they were joined in dreaming by all their shaman and sacred sisters around the earth, called dream incubation of the cave eras.

Before wars descended upon the earth, men also had their essential roles and parts in the great rituals of the tribe and clans. Their rites (like most cultures) are historically viewed as war dances, but in actuality there was no war-based intentions in their origins, that was propaganda, a myth projected as real when they were just dances.Kolyadki Winter Midnight Sun Goddess Kievskaya Vasilisa Kolyadki akvarely cvetnye karandashiThe ancient tradition of creating art is also an important path, as both talisman (to be worn) and amulet (to be placed or hung) has also been carried on in Slavic traditions of Christmas. As the Christian stories of the “Son of God” gained cultural momentum, the symbols often found on these amulets and talismans lost their reference to the fertility of both the Fire Goddess (of the summer solstice) and her twin mirror the Night Goddess (of the winter solstice) and her heavenly fertility.

Although the original meaning of the Midnight Sun was displaced, the symbol remains present in Slavic celebrations due to tendency of Slavs and Balkans to bring their own traditions into Christianity rather than lose them. As religion became the leading influence of commerce for artisans, traditional craftsmen and women were given work to change these ancient symbols and adapt them to support both the new power of religion and male power in general. The work of these artisans combined with the domination of written pagan-god culture is what ultimately transformed the meaning of these shamanic symbols.

Północ Gwiazda (101)The verb ‘koliadovat’ means to go from door to door, singing ritual songs, asking for sweets and the pagan aspects of wearing animal masks. Koliada is the time between Korochun (the Winter Solstice) and the first week of January. Lighted fires and candles are to light the darkest time of the year which was to echo the ancient pagan custom of banging the sparks from the burning Budnik ritual log, that is lit up at Koliada, much like the English Yule log. Sviatky in Russia is equivalent to yuletide and is celebrated in January where all the young girls and women in the family would practice folk divination, which is mostly melted wax into a water bowl.

Koliada in its older traditions is the name of a cycle of winter rituals that aligns with the new moon stemming from the ancient Calendae. The modern term of children and caroler’s singing is called kolyadovannya in Ukrainian and is now applied to similar Old East Slavic celebrations. In Bulgarian and Macedonian traditions of koleduvane (коледуване) or koledarenje (коледарење) which are also around Christmas and the Kolyadka (songs) are sung as well.

Koleda is also celebrated across northern Greece by the Slavs of Macedonia in Florina to Thessaloniki which is called Koleda (Κόλιντα, Κόλιαντα) and Koleda Babo (Κόλιντα Μπάμπω) which means “Koleda Grandmother” in Slavic and this directly ties Koleda (Winter Solstice) to the Winter Goddess Marzana making it the most archaic Koleda. This is a ritual of gathering in the village square and lighting a bonfire, followed by local Macedonian dancing. There is also a dance from Dubrovnik called “The Dubrovnik Koleda.”

Północ Gwiazda (92)Wigilia is the traditional Polish Christmas eve celebrations and sometimes called “gwiazdory” which is reference to the “Star” carriers. Before the 11th century they were all pagan celebrations and rituals and the oral traditions which were passed down for millenniums for generation to generation were lost and all we have left is a very small narrow culture of religious songs that lack the mystery. Poland’s Koledy, like other Slavic countries still bright Star along with the singers and folk musician spreading seasonal good wishes.

Hieroglyphs, Petroglyphs, Cave Drawings, Ancient and Contemporary Art, Esoteric, Divination and even major business logo’s all draw from nature-based symbols (images of artists and dreamers) and contain a root language of our past and our souls journey. Traditional oral stories can be traced to these sources of images throughout history and prehistory and their original meanings can be understood when one recognizes symbolic language as their “first language.” Symbolism as a tool, has been birthed forth from sacred dreamers, shamans and artists since the dreamers societies and this continues today in a less elaborate and less powerful and less meaningful shamanic ceremony. But at least fragments still exist and can be built upon for the future.

 

villagers from zakalnoe, sing kolyadki of the winter-midnight-sun-goddess

The Sun Goddess (in both Balkan and Slavic cultures) has a far more ancient symbolic meaning, than what is used in today’s rituals of the recent pagan past. In the past several thousand years her symbol evolved to be regarded as a “star” and this is a relatively recent concept. Prior to the evolution of astronomy, astrology, science and religion, the eight pointed star (associated with the Sun Goddess and Goddesses like Ishtar, Tanit and some older archaic goddesses) it represented the Midnight Sun of the Winter Solstice here on earth, not in the sky and that is the most important of all.

bronze_slavic_early_medieval_female_jewel_pendant VESNA, Slavic pendant, Moravia Magna Empire, bronzeThis star can be seen in the symbolism of folk ritual, folk art, rich textiles, pysanky eggs and sacred art of both the Slavs and the Balkan people. One later example is the early Medieval Slavic Moravia Magna (Moravian Empire) and it’s 8 pointed Vesna symbol which looks like a “flower”. Vesna is the Goddess of life, beauty, love and the spring and asscociated with the Goddess Lada.

Because the earth was woman’s only focus prior to men’s teachings (paganism and religion) the symbols and images belonging to woman’s prehistory were actually quite different and in many ways an opposition of what we have today in the meanings of symbols. If we release the associations created through these dominant teachings of the Sun Cults (which began to around 2,200 bce) we can begin to see the symbols come alive and express a more healing and magical meaning, which came forth from women weaving connectedness to the immediate surroundings and to accepting the dark winters without rushing to bring any light forth ahead of spring. In these ways we were accepting of the dark night and the time of silence. We were accepting to go inward and enter the night forest of mother earth and to heal the deepest during this time.

postIf we look at the Rozhy as a sacred symbol, which emerged from ancient earth-focused artists (who were generally the healers and enactors of rituals and leadership)  we can see that the eight-pointed Ruzha (ружа) is not a “star” but a “flower”. The Rozhy (mallow flowers) are so often similar to the eight-pointed star motif that during the shift from feminine to masculine-dominated teachings to see everything linear, the flower took on the connotation of the solar god and began to be regarded as a representation of the sun itself. Today this symbol still represents the feminine, and woman’s sensitivities of the beauty of nurturing, and symbolizes love and caring for others. The Sun Goddess’s symbol, which retains both the meaning of the “Sun” and “Flower” allows us to trace its origin to the archaic symbol of the “Fire Flower.”

One of the most beautiful symbols of the Winter Solstice (which remains passed down from a direct lineages of the Matriarchal structures) is the 8 pointed Midnight Sun (or Fire Flower) that is carried atop a ritual staff by Ukrainian carolers at Christmas. Long ago shamanic ritual and Fire Dances would have accompanied these singers in their solstice celebration. The names of the Mallow flower (which is representative of the Fire Flower) in various Slavic and Balkan countries are:

Bulgarian: Горски слез (Gorski slez)
Czech: Sléz lesní
Croatian: Sljez crni, Sljez divlji
Estonian: Mets-kassinaeris
Georgian: ბალბა (Balba)
Macedonian: црн слез
Polish: Ślaz dziki
Romanian: Nalba de culturä, nalba de padure
Serbian: Crni slez
Slovak: Slez lesný
Slovene: Gozdni slezenovec
Ukrainian: Мальва лісова

christmas star

In China, the mallow flower is called the “power of magic” for its abilities to ward off shadows and shadow-natured humans who walk between the worlds. A similar reference is found in Polish mythology which mentions Fire Flowers in much of their folklore. The ritual of the Vesta is a distinct Fire Flower rite and is a shamanic ritual in origin. The rite of the Fire Flower wasn’t a game or a celebration, but a real shamanic initiation which could last five to twenty years.

In today’s pagan ritual its said that to find the Fire Flower the seeker must enter a forest before midnight on the Eve of Kupala of the Summer Solstice. Blooming precisely at midnight, the brightness of the flower is so brilliant that no person can look at it directly. The reference of both “Flower” and “Midnight” in these stories also connect to the observance of the solstices.

For this powerful flower to be harvested, a circle had to be drawn around it. The seeker would encounter demons who would try to distract or prevent him/her from completing this task. It was said that if you answered the voices, or faltered during the task the cost would be your life. Anyone who succeeded in possessing this flower gained the ability to repel all evils. Thus, within the folklore of this Fire Flower lies the symbolism of the spiritual tests of the Shamans from these regions.

Midnight Sun symbolism of the Winter Dark Goddess

The ancients like myself as a shaman recognize and live by these two seasons: Summer and Winter and when one tries to relearn alignment with the celebration of these two seasons of earth, rather than the four we have come to regard as wholeness, one begins to be in rhythm with the rhythms of their emotional body as the earth herself does. These two-halves of the (whole) year are divided into two :

FIRE (spring-summer / solstice) Light half of the year from Spring to Autumn

NIGHT (autumn-winter / solstice) Night half of the year from Autumn to Spring

fire

These two halves of the year are marked by the solstices and correlate with the north and south axis of Earth. These axis are the gates where dreamers, dream walkers, and soul bodied astral traveling shamans and humans exited and entered the mystical veils of earth (not off earth, like the new 4,000 year teachings of star lore wishes you to believe). Once the pyramids were built on earth, these were to disrupt magnetic energy and  slowly eradicate your dreaming and this ability through the magnetics of your emotional body and soul.

The demarcation of two halves of the year is one of the main differences between prehistory dreaming rituals and tribes and the rituals that have taken their place in the the past 4,000 years. This resulted in the loss of our connection to our dreamer and night dreams as real and powerful  which our astral body crosses back and forth. Woman’s prehistory rites and rituals, link directly to the power of dreaming itself and these celebrations involving the Spring and Autumn Equinox seasons are actually intended for our ordinary and mundane life of the waking world and not for the in-between worlds of the shaman, dreamers or mystics.

Many pagans who observe Halloween and Samhain celebrations would find this odd because (due to the rising power of the men of both Paganism and the Religious Sun cults) much significance has been placed on observing the Equinox and Religions over-took the Solstices and changed them to the mundane world. Nonetheless, the Spring and Autumn Equinox celebrations are important and mark significant turning points in the year, but not the spiritual in-between the worlds’ year.

Kolyadki Winter Midnight Sun Goddess 1903 Kolyadki Festive table in Podolsk villages

Another important facet of the Midnight Sun (or reverse sun sometimes called the second sun (core magma of the earth’s center) is its role as symbol of the feminine power of the internal fire and nature’s core of fire. Connected with the archaic Goddess figures of Marzanna and even how she rolled into the Black Madonna, this symbol can be traced back to the lineages of the shaman or cave grandmothers era’s of earth.

The Midnight Sun or Central Sun as some new age groups call it, it is the fire in the belly of the Mother Earth (which is fire). One of the ways to reconnect to the root of Woman’s prehistoric teachings (which have been both lost, destroyed and corrupted) is to reclaim a path of the Powerful Self which is our inner Fire. To do this requires both a healing journey, and a purification process involving working towards the unification of both perception (emotion / souls) and perspective (mind / beliefs) when living our mundane and creative life.

Kolyadki Winter Midnight Sun Goddess Різдво на Україні ukraine christmas sun

fire-%d0%bf%d0%be%d1%82%d0%b5%d1%80%d1%87%d0%b0%d1%82%d0%b0-1963Like most cultures, celebrations which contain vestiges of the original Solstice rituals have changed. Many of the Singing Carolers of Ukraine carry images and amulets of the Svarha (сварга) or Swastika during the Winter Solstice. But before pagan eras, this symbol denoted the movement of Ursa Major across the heavens and the four seasons in symbol form were the four spinning arms of transformation. As Pagan and then the Sun Cults (religions) came into power the symbol began to represent the Sun’s travel across the sky. In Slavic culture this symbol represented the Midnight Sun of the Dark Goddess (like Marzanna) of the winter and would then in later eras symbolized Dazhboh, a benevolent Sun God, in the Summer.

When i look at modern pagans today of both Slavic and Balkan countries, I see a lot of war loving viking imagery and associations and male dominance in the leadership, I see the same in men’s religions. If women are to heal themselves and work with their soul, they must begin to find a way to incorporate the more personal meanings of the moon, the sun, nature and personal ritual that weaves them together, both with intentions of health and letting go of what no longer serves their spiritual paths.

Kolyadki Winter Midnight Sun Goddess 32

Kolyadki Winter Midnight Sun Goddess Matonka

When the complex multi-spoke designs of the “Star” of Christmas became popularized, the rites of the women and grandmothers were eventually conferred to rituals enacted by children. By the 17th century the star lost most of its reference to its previous symbolic meaning and women were no longer allowed to participate in many of the solstice traditions.

The creation of amulets or star symbols, once used in the shamanic rites of women to protect their villages from shadows, were ultimately demoted to a child’s craft activity of Christmas folk art at local museums or schools. But this will change as more and more Slavic pagans return to their origins peacefully again.

So what is the Midnight Sun?

It is the path of the dreamers, when night is all the time and the Sun goes dormant and regenerates and all the planets go dormant (winter cycle). Or what spiritual people and science calls, the Pole Shift. Science still thinks a star dies in the universe… couldn’t be more far from the truth, for nature is perfect, not humans and everything has its life cycle and rebirth… the other thing science was wrong about is that energy can be destroyed… it can.

Sources: Fire Потерчата, 1963, Polish traditional stars, The coloring in Ukrainian by Puzyrna Galyna; Ukraine Illustrator Vera Pavlova; Illustration by Nadia Starovoitova; Verteps parade in Lviv, Ukraine; https://sasartiglia.com, . All photos and images belong to their rightful owners and shared for women’s dreaming educational purposes only. 

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Keenahnay

Huntress 2

Article by Joshua J. Mark (partial) ~

Cynane (c. 357- 323 BCE, pronounced `Keenahnay’) was the daughter of the Illyrian Princess Audata and King Philip II of Macedon, making her the half-sister of Alexander the Great. Following the Illyrian tradition of women warriors, her mother raised her in the martial arts traditions of the Amazones as woman are equal to all men. Cynane lived this truth and instilled the same values in her own daughter, Adea, whom she raised to power at the cost of her own life.

Audata became the first of Philip’s seven wives among whom was also Alexander’s mother, Olympias. Audata was a true Illyrian warrior, a product of her culture’s practice of raising young girls to grow up to be women warriors in the Illyrian traditions, teaching her martial arts and to hunt, track, ride, and fight better than most men. Before she was twenty, Cynane was well known for these skills and became famous for her courage and brilliance.

Any young woman in the Macedonian court would have been expected to behave herself as befitted her gender but Cynane refused to be dominated by any of these social repressive cultures where men were given all rights and women on the rights a man deemed fit for her. Cynane rode into battle alongside her brother Alexander and his friends on numerous occassions but became legendary after she turned the tide of battle with the Illyrians single-handedly. Cynane’s courage was most likely widely circulated by oral traditions before historians like Polyaneaus.  Her victory over the Illyrians made her a legend but it was her struggle to control her own life, and provide a better future for her daughter, which made her of interest to the ancient historians like Polyaneus who would make her immortal.

By the will of Philip II, Cynane was given in marriage to her cousin Amyntas and gave birth to a daughter, Adea. After Philip II was assassinated in 336 BCE she tried to rouse Amyntas to action and pushed him to seize the throne but he ignored her advice. Whether he simply refused to take the counsel of a woman or was afraid to take the risk is unknown he made a grave mistake. When Alexander the Great took the throne of his father he had Amyntas killed, recognizing that Cynane might attempt to do exactly what she had been doing.

She was a widow, then, in her early twenties and would have been expected to marry again but she refused all offers and was able to maintain her autonomy even though it was very much in the interests of the new king to marry her off quickly to some non-threatening suitor.There is no record of how Cynane was able to manipulate the situation and resist Alexander’s designs for her life but it is clear she remained single in spite of his best attempts. He tried to neutralize Cynane by marrying her off to Langarus, King of the Agrianians (a Patagonian-Thracian tribe of Upper Strymon in present-day Bulgaria) but the groom died of a mysterious illness just prior to the marriage. While there is no proof, it is likely Cynane had Langarus poisoned in order to keep herself from becoming a pawn in Alexander’s sick games.

Cynane, however, saw her own opportunity in her half-brother’s Alexander’s death and moved quickly to take advantage of it.  She was only in her early thirties at the time, and a very eligible match, so she could have offered herself as a bride to Arrhidaeus but chose to raise Adea up instead.  Quickly mobilizing her troops, Cynane led Adea and her army toward Babylon to force a marriage which would secure her daughter’s future as well as her own. Cynane would be able to seize power through her daughter and, as a daughter of Philip II and Alexander’s half-sister, would naturally command the loyalty of Alexander’s great army.

Upon hearing of Cynane’s move, Perdiccas sent Antipater, one of Alexander’s generals, against her in Strymon where she defeated him swiftly through superior tactics. Driving him from the field, she continued on toward Babylon. Perdiccas knew he had to stop her advance and so mobilized a second force to send against her. He carefully chose his brother, Alcetus, to lead the Macedonians not because of Alcetus’ skill in battle but because he had been one of Cynane’s companions at court when they were young. The plan seems to have been that the sight of her old friend leading an armed force against her would cause Cynane to abandon her mission and return quietly to Macedonia. Failing that, Perdiccas’ hopes rested on Alcetus managing to defeat her honorably in battle and neutralize any further interference from her.

Neither of these possibilities were realized, however. When the two Macedonian forces met on the field, Cynane confronted Alcetus personally and “delivered a stinging reproach of his ingratitude and disloyalty” from the back of her horse.  Believing in her cause, and in own personal power to bend Alcetus and his generals to her will, Cynane underestimated the ambitions of Perdiccas and how far Alcetus was willing to go to keep his brother and the other generals in power; Alcetus killed her before she finished her speech.