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Posts Tagged ‘goddess’

SUMMER’S TALE ( The Ancestral Speaks)

I have found an acorn, small and green.
Given my murmured breath,
Given it my own waters.
It has grown thick and strong
Arching to heaven.
I have planted it deep
In my warm darknesses.
Rooted, it quivers
Bursting forth white blossoms,
A dripping mistletoe,
A sacred thing.
Becoming worlds we,
Trees of life, twined,
Exhale and rest
On warm earth,
A sun-dappled ground.

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I have just recently turned my attention back to a project called (at the moment) “Recitation of the Names of Night ( or Darkness)”, pulling together black and white graphics and words to create an art book project. How far it will get, who knows…..
These received texts will be interspersed amongst images, some as staightforward text, some as worked and layered artworks. ( “received” as in: come out of the blue, unbidden, uncensored, unformed, a fleeting landscape of idea cuaght from a speeding moment)…

RECITATION (1)

The Topography of Night

The topography of Night
The slopes of darkness
Its pools, its shadows,
Its steep contours, its melodies,
Its mists and clouds.
To map its creatures
To collate its vocabulary
To define with certainty
Its presence and its absence.
To narrate its brilliance,
Its luminous resonant self,
Its fear-filled halls,
Its echoing steps, its
Vague promises, its
Certain threats,
Its embraces, its charms,
Its crevices, its lascivious
Gestures, its names,
Its names,
Its names.

—-

Epidermis

She moves,
Ligament and skin
Extending, taughtening,
Flex, reflex, a brushing
Of skin on skin.
Dark matter, dark mother,
Between all things,
Behind and within,
Void and immanent,
An unexpected punchline
Ghosting us,
Rapidly, inevitably,
Collapsing neat equations,
Smug cosmologies.
The sound of silk sliding
On silk, tongue across lips.

—-

Vessel

A bowl, a cup. A simple thing echoing the two hands together. A nutritious function. The hands, the skull, the sky. Clay pressed to hold emptiness and fullness. Progenitor, act of creation. Made of clay, pinches of dust kissed, mated, caressed, formed. Fingertips pressing warm cavities, pliant, obedient, holding still, spun, stroked, admitted, allowed. The scent of iron and sweat and earth.

—–

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MAHARATRI – Great Night

Continuing my exploration of the Mahavidyas, this piece tracks and picks out words, phrases and ideas from Danielou’s work. I don’t know how it will stand by itself for those not familiar with any of the imagery or symbolism, but for me it is acting as a trigger and an introduction to how both visuals and text might develop in the future.

Object of transcendence. Maha Ratri 1

1
Eternity, ten nights long
Five for the god,
Five for the goddess.
The power of Siva –
To know it, one word,
No other word were needed.

Ten objects:
The divine night, destiny mapped,
Destruction mirrored,
Fear revealed.
The power of time,
The last manacle of sky iron,
Melted, irrelevant in the bliss
Of our supreme nonexistence.

2
The state of deep sleep,
Our little dream, ocean’s drop
Of perfect quiescence,
Nothing remaining,
Not time acting on,
But time itself:
Absolute night.

Beyond the beyond,
Sleeper withdrawing
Into the power of time,
Itself.
Immensity,
A diadem of illusion:
Licks of lightning
Flickering
At the corners of the sea,
Surface, iridescent, unmoved.

This absolute night,
The night of destruction,
When things
That are not things,
When the objects
Of our philosophies,
When even the bare bones
Of is and now,
Slide and smudge
Decorating no longer
The resounding passageways
Of thought,
The geometries
Of measured edge.

For there is now one thing
That is the only thing,
A no thing,
A perfect surface
Curving to infinity,
Our lady
Of the spheres,
Resplendent emptiness.
The little light
That does nothing but divide,
Distend, distort,
And shatter into matter
Finally engulfed,
By the Giver.

Returning in the evening
All the birds nest in happiness,
All nestle to the welcome night,
Enfolded by calm.
All, all come to rest
Upon her lap-
Mother of Happiness,
Mother of Night.

( I shall step into the still,
mild darkness,
the rush of silent air,
fragrant after a day of rain.
Feel my purpose dissolve,
my need and reasons waver,
words and names becoming uncertain,
then soon submerged.
Passing clouds,
passing clouds).

3
Time
That tears asunder
All things,
Destroyer of worlds,
She herself
Is your dance.

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The Ten Mahavidyas

The mahavidyas, or “great wisdoms”, “wisdom goddesses”, or “Ten objects of Transcendent Wisdom” is a medieval Indian system of metaphysical thought that brings together aspects of goddess energy in a powerful and evocative manner. In certain aspects it falls outside the more familiar Hindu orthodoxy, whilst deepening and adding commentary to the esoteric traditions of the Himalayan region.

I first came across the Mahavidyas in my fourth year at the University of Edinburgh and was drawn to the powerful imagery- especially as presented in Alain Danielou’s “Hindu Polytheism”- so that I incorporated elements of symbolism in my sculpture projects. At the time I was using the image of the bowl a lot in my work and it seemed an ideal form to express the numinous within the familiar. A container of space, requiring emptiness to define itself, the bowl has often been employed as a metaphor for the polarity of existence.
Much more recently I was asked to make images representing each Mahavidya in the same way that I found symbolic forms for tree energies. It took a while to consider. It is one thing tuning into a tree energy and seeing how to visually freeze that unique energy dance, it is a different matter of scale to do the same to a powerful universal energy presence. Resolution came when I acknowledged that the Mahavidya energy patterns are transgender, transhuman, transspatial, transtemporal, transcultural entities. In other words, it was not necessary to get “permission” or authentication to begin this work. They do not belong to any one species or gender or time or theology, though their symbolic references will be culturally specific. I am possessed wholly by these energies as I am with the frequencies of the electro-magnetic spectrum. I do not need to achieve knowledge or understanding outside of myself. In fact they have a more permanent existence than what I consider to be my own personal reality.

MAHAKALI

Great Time
Time accumulating,
Licking
Laughing.
Disintegrates
your considerate sciences,
Your careful measured certainty.

Unfettered
Definitions cease.
Knowing Her
There is nothing else to know.

Beyond subatomic passion,
Endless rest, but awake.

Scurrilous,
Untramelled Reality,
Radiant darkness
Embedded, entangled,
Woven into solidity

Solid time
Still time
Waiting time.
Ungraspable, unavoidable

Warm red tongue
Licking your soul.
Warm lips clasping.

Atrocious vastness,
Contigious unity,
Invisible light
Revealed.

Exploding souls
Supernovae.

The image above is one of a series of prints I made of the Mahavidyas and related energies. This one is Kali, the Great Night of Time, Deathless Silence, Perfect Bright Darkness. Kali means ‘time’.
Though these energies are personified and worshipped as deities, they transcend all human categorisation and all cultural niceties. They are raw reality, which is why they are so scary! Any image is Mahakali, every concept is Mahakali. This image I have made is therefore perfectly MahaKali, though not exclusively so!!

If you are interested inseeing the other images or purchasing a few(!!) please go to click here

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