FOI Online Liturgy
Psyche, Magical Journeys of the Goddess
By: Olivia Robertson
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12. Ursa Minor. Ray III.
ORACLE OF THE GODDESS ADITI
PRIESTESS: We hail Thee, Aditi, Mahadevi, Mother of the Deities. Thou art Goddess of Infinity and within Thy Being cometh forth the manifested creation. As all things come of Thee, we are Thy children. Aid us in our search for Love, Wisdom and Happiness.
ORACLE: My dearest child, within you is contained all that you seek. The lesser embodies the Great but cannot contain it: the Great however may be born within the smallest atom. There are those who, having attained illumination, regard themselves as Deities, containing the universe within themselves. Although such experiences have validity, yet the foolish sage who ignores the outer transcendent Deity makes separation between outer and inner. The deathless Deities are reflected in yourselves and may not be denied.
It is good for mankind to seek the Light within: but the time has come for humanity to recognise the all-encompassing darkness without. During the past age the sun has been seen as sole luminary reigning over planets. The mightiness of space with its stars was but an ornament, palanquin to decorate the majesty of the sun. When the sun shone, the stars vanished! The sages regarded themselves as self-contained entities, containing the universe. There were those who attained cosmic consciousness by such meditation. But others, having created an impassable shell around themselves, instead of attaining the great Awakening, were reborn within a physical womb, fortunate to be incarnated as a human baby!
Look without, at the need of a hungry child, a suffering man and woman, and you find Me. Have pity on cruelly treated animals: and you find Me within their eyes. Save trees and forests and you save Me. You speak of Me as Goddess of boundless space: because I am boundless, I am within the heart of a gnat. When you fear the infinity of the cosmos, turn instead to that which is small, which requires your love and protection: there you will discover eternal Love, Wisdom and Bliss.
PRIESTESSES WEAR JEWELLED TIARAS AND PRIESTS, JEWELLED MITRES AND ALL WEAR ORANGE ROBES AND BEAR WHITE STAFFS. VOYAGERS WEAR HEAD GARLANDS AND MANY-COLOURED ROBES. ON GOLD DRAPED ALTAR ARE 7 LIGHTED CANDLES, A BRASS VESSEL OF WATER AND BURNING INCENSE.
1ST PRIEST: Fellow pilgrims, we are assembled to make a magical journey to The Little Bear, the Ursa Minor constellation, there to find the jewels of Love, Wisdom and Bliss. Shining in glory that never sets is Stella Maris, Isis of the Sea, lodestar for mariners. To Israelites she was the Angel Star of Eden. Her predecessor as Pole Star was in Draco, and her successors will be in Cepheus, Cygnus and Lyra. However, now she is the pivot around which we see our Northern constellations revolve. She presides over the negative North pole of earth. Hindus regarded the constellation as the dazzling mountain, Assembly Place of the Deities.
1ST PRS: (MAKES CIRCLE SIGN WITH STAFF AND OFFERS INCENSE.) I offer incense to Thee, Mahadevi Aditi, Mother of the Gods! Thou Who art the Self-born, the Boundless Whole, Eternal Space, awake in us love for all who are born of Thee!
1ST PR: (MAKES SIGN OF ARROW WITH STAFF AND OFFERS INCENSE.) I offer incense to Thee, the Devi Kasyapa, Holy Consort of Aditi! Thou didst abandon Thy Divinity in order to take form as Rishi upon earth, there to gain wisdom from littleness. Teach us to attain wisdom from Thy greatness!
2ND PR: That we may expand our consciousness to attain the starry spheres, we need to open the Third Eye!
2ND PRS: (ANOINTS EACH BROW.) May your Third Eye of Truth be awakened!
3RD PRS: Fellow pilgrims, that we may travel from our physical and etheric world to the inner astral, spiritual and divine planes of being, we need to form the magical Pushpaka Chariot of Rama!
3RD PR: We call upon the Holy Goddess of Fire, Durga, to help the creation of our chariot!
INDIAN MUSIC. DANCE TO CREATE A SHINING SPHERE AROUND COMPANY.
1ST PILGRIM: We need a Guru to instruct us!
3RD PR: And Who better than the God Dhruva, a Deva of Grahadhara, the Pole Star. Behold, He stands before us! He is seven feet tall and is indigo coloured. He bears the jewelled mitre of a God and holds a trident that gives mastery over the Three Sacred Spheres. We salute Him as Guru with folded hands. He smiles and bids us be seated. He is explaining that to travel into deep space we need the permission of the Goddess Kali, Daughter of Aditi. Kali declares that because our intention is good, we may travel through her realm.
3RD PRS: We are seated in a circle within our Pushpaka chariot and we shut our eyes. Our temple floor sinks beneath us and our chariot is rising rapidly into the sky! We see with etheric vision. Our earth herself is falling away from us. How fair Prithivi, the earth, looks, half in light, half in shadow, embraced by her lover, the sky Deva Dyaus! Now we are gliding past Chandra, the moon and Savitri, the shining sun. We dart like an eagle to the North. Before us spreads the mighty river bed of Ganges of the Stars. Here are Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Ursa Major and Ursa Minor. We hear lovely music. Dhruva tells us that this is played by celestial musicians, the Gandharvas. We have reached the Astral Realm of Yami and Yama, Devi and Deva of the First Heaven, Svarga.
THE HEAVEN OF SVARGA
Our Guru informs us that this is the realm of fulfilled passions, where evil is transmuted into good through Love. He recites to us the words of the Demon Ravana, as he attempts to seduce the virtuous Sita, wife of Rama:
3RD PR: "Ravana in his flattering accents, with a soft and soothing art,
Praised the woman's peerless beauty to subdue the woman's heart:
'Beaming in thy golden beauty, robed in sylvan russet dress,
Wearing wreath of fragrant lotus like a nymph of wilderness,
On thy lips of ruddy coral teeth of tender jasmine shine,
In thine eyes of limpid lustre dwells a light of love divine!
Tall and slender, softly rounded, are thy limbs of beauty rare,
Like the swelling fruit of tala heaves thy bosom sweetly fair!
Smiling lips that tempt and ravish, lustre that thy dark eyes beam,
Crush my heart, as rolling waters crush the margin of the stream.
And thy wealth of waving tresses mantles o'er thy budding charms,
And thy waist of slender beauty courts a lover's circling arms!'”
3RD PRS: “However, Sita gives this spirited reply:
'Hurl thyself upon the ocean from a towering peak and high,
Snatch the orbs of day and midnight from their spheres in azure sky,
Tongues of flaming conflagration in thy flowing dress enfold,
Ere thou take the wife of Rama to thy distant dungeon hold!
Ere thou seek to insult Rama unrelenting in his wrath,
O'er a bed of pikes of iron tread a softer easier path!’”
1ST PR: Dhruva tells us that in the Realm of Svarga Sita, Rama and Ravana are reconciled through the matchless love of Sita. Here also dwell Krishna, Incarnation of the God Vishnu, with his two wives, Rhada the Milk-maid and the princess Rukmini, both Incarnations of the Goddess Lakshmi. They dwell in amity with the 16,180 Brides of Krishna with their 16,180 sons. These are all images of their Divine Father, indigo-coloured with 4 arms apiece. They dance and sing with the innumerable Brides of other Gods, and the countless Lovers of Goddesses. How beautiful is Svarga! Here is no dogma, no enmity nor enforced laws, but all live according to their Dharma, Law of the Heart.
3RD PRS: Animals, reptiles, birds and fish live here, none injuring the other. High over all flies the King of Birds, Garuda! Ganesha, the Elephant-headed God, Son of Parvati and Siva, pours abundance upon all those who starved on earth. Hanuman the Monkey God, Son of the Monkey Goddess Anjana, brings laughter to those who wept on earth. Jambavan, King of Bears, dwells in peace with the Nagas, serpents of wisdom. And through the waters of the starry Ganges, shaded by peepul trees, floats the Goddess Ganga of the waving hair with her nymphs. Here shines the loving Savitri, who surrendered her life to Yama, that her husband, Satyavan, Soul of Truth, might be restored to life! Both bring healing to those who suffer, and guide their souls to Svarga. Dhruva tells us to leave our chariot, and cross the rainbow bridge over the Ganges, and enter Svarga, there to find Love.
Let us return from Svarga, with love, tears and laughter in our hearts.
2ND PR: Our Pushpaka chariot is flying over the Ganges and is making for Ursa Major. We see seven rays of rainbow lights emanating from the Seven Sacred Star Mountains. Here dwell the Seven Rishis with other Sages and Gurus. They teach in palaces of Wisdom, Ashrama, and from thence some descend as Avatars to earth, bringing jewels of enlightenment. Finally we reach the three stars of Ursa Minor. Above Mount Meru shines Grahadhara, Polaris. Dhruva tells us that this realm is presided over by the Goddess Sarasvati of the Arts and Brahma, God of Wisdom. Here those who seek the Great Awakening come, that they may transcend the opposites and attain Divine Union.
THE HEAVEN OF MOUNT MERU
2ND PRS: As we gaze upon the stars of Ursa Minor, Dhruva tells us of The Self: "the wise meditate on the Self, which is the Deity that is within darkness, is hidden in a cave, dwells in the abyss. That Self, the Knower, is not born, it dies not: that Self is smaller than the small, greater than the great; is hidden in the heart of the creature. But they who have not first turned away from wickedness can never obtain the Self, even by knowledge. Some are born again as living beings, others enter stocks and stones, according to their works. But the Highest Being, that indeed is called the Light, is called Brahman, and alone is Immortal. As the one fire, after it has entered the world, becomes different according to its fuel, so the One Self becomes varied according to the form which it enters: but it also exists apart. It is transcendent."
Dhruva tells us to leave our chariot and ascend the stairway leading to Mount Meru of the stars, Heaven of Wisdom.
2ND PR: Friends, let us return from Mount Meru and enter our chariot, wisdom within us. Suddenly our chariot rises like an arrow to the double Pole Star, Grahadhara! We see its twin stars shining with topaz-yellow and white light, filling our chariot with harmonious colour and music. Dhruva tells us that we approach the Heaven of Grahadhara, ruled by the Goddess Devi and the God Siva. Here Love and Wisdom are united in Ananda, Eternal Bliss. In this Heaven of flowering trees shading lotus-filled pools, the Yakshas guard hidden spiritual treasures. Sacred Dance Dramas are performed by the Kinnaras, humans with horse-heads; and the Gandharvas, half-bird, half-human, play exquisite music for the Apsaras, aerial Devi who float in forests of stars.
THE HEAVEN OF GRAHADHARA
1ST PRS: Here, radiating peace and happiness, reigns the Golden Goddess Devi. In lesser planes She manifests as the gentle Parvati, the fiery Durga and the black Kali. But in this Heaven of Bliss She contains all Her Manifestations in One Being:
“I worship Devi Who shines like a thousand rising suns,
Is attired in red garments, wears a garland of jewels,
Has breasts reddened with sandalwood paste.
She holds in two hands the rosary and the book
And Her other two hands confer boons and protection.
She has three eyes adorning Her lotus face,
Hath Her forehead bedecked with the moon,
And weareth the bejewelled diadem,
And is seated upon the lotus.
Goddess Who giveth unfettered happiness,
Mother, give us Truth, Consciousness and Bliss!”
1ST PR: By Her side is the White God Siva, Who as Nataraja performs the Dance of Creation:
"I worship Siva Who is lustrous as the radiant halo of the sun,
Has four arms and three eyes, Who holdeth flame and drum.
Siva is silver in lustre, faultlessly beautiful,
Adorned with every ornament.
O Siva, Your third Eye, radiant as the lotus,
Creates twilight, betwixt your eyes of night and day.
Grant us wisdom and strength: compassion and bliss!”
1ST PRS: Fellow pilgrims, the God Dhruva instructs us to leave our chariot and enter the Heaven of Grahadhara by a pathway of starlight.
Friends, before we leave this Heaven of Bliss, let us pause and gaze upon the Pole Star shining above the Dazzling Mount Meru! But where are they? They have disappeared, swallowed up by darkness. We are surrounded by the deep peace of boundless space, wrapped in the Mother's arms. But there is a slow movement as the darkness begins to form a spiral. The spiral rotates faster and faster until it becomes a vortex. Containing this Yoni we behold the Goddess Aditi, Mother of all. From Her heart emerge two shining beings, One, luminous yellow; the Other, shining white. These are the Goddess Devi and the God Siva. Their diadems are the Northern constellations. Upon Devi's brow shines Her Third Eye, the Pole Star. The Dragon's Eye of Draco is the Third Eye of Siva. Their bodies form the Milky Way and from Their feet pour the starry Ganges. Both have four arms outstretched, which manifest the Eight Rays of the Cosmic Star.
1ST PR: They bestow upon us Their Blessing. The Divine Apparition fades, and we recognise once more the stars of our familiar Little Bear. The Devi Dhruva instructs us to turn our back on the Heaven of Grahadhara, that we may be avatars, messengers from Heaven bringing jewels of love, wisdom and bliss to earth. We enter our Pushpaka chariot * * * we leave the Heaven of Grahadhara and pass through the Heaven of Mount Meru * * * and through the Heaven of Varga * * * we pass Savitri, our sun, and Chandra, our moon * * * we sink into our Temple. The God Dhruva tells us to disperse our chariot in reverse order to its creation through dance. We give thanks to Dhruva for acting as our Guru. He smiles, blesses us and fades from our sight. Our chariot is dispersed.
MEDITATION AND REPORTS. HEALING IS SENT FORTH.
PRIESTHOOD GIVES THANKS TO ADITI AND KASYAPA, SARASVATI AND BRAHMA, DEVI AND SIVA.
End of Rite.
Sources: "The Ramayyana and The Mahabharata", trans. Dutt, Everyman. "The Vedas", Max Muller, Indological Book House, Delhi. "Indian Mythology," Veronica Ions, Hamlyn. "Images of Devi in Pahari Paintings," Chote Bharany, foreword, Sivaramamurti, C 36 Connaught pl., Delhi. "Goddesses of India, Tibet, China and Japan," Durdin-Robertson, Cesara. "Star Names", Hinckley Allen, Dover.
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