Big Rowan Ackison (greensh) wrote,
Big Rowan Ackison

Mother Goddess and the Balance of Nature

This Saturday (09/16) was Pagan Pride day here in Greenville. I was under the weather and did not attend. In recognition of the day I would like to share a past (2003 to 2004?) article that speaks to the sacred nature of our Earth Mother.

(begin article!)

Below are two e-mails from 2002. I was responding to questions by Apophis (SG1?) regarding Mother Goddess and the nurture/destruction balance of nature.

[EMAIL #1]

From: "aragornr" <greensh@k...>
Date: Sat Jun 29, 2002 4:07 pm
Subject: Re: Question Concerning the Popular Paths
--- In Ancient_Magic@y..., "Apophis" <apophis13@b...>wrote:
> I had a question for all of you that are Wiccan, Pagan, etc. If I am
> correct, the Mother Goddess is the nurturing, life giving spirit of
> that maintains the natural balance. For this reason, many pagans
have been
> concerned with environmental issues. My question is this: What is
the spirit
> that opposes this balance and seeks to destroy the environment?
Magical Law
> seems to require that such a being exists if the Mother Goddess
exists in
> opposition to that deity. Just curious. Only informed answers
> apophis

I'd like to answer this from a shamanic viewpoint. As another list member pointed out, nature has cycles of creation and destruction - life and death. The spirit of nature does strive to maintain this natural balance. We as human beings consciously or unconsciously ignore the natural balance with dire results to ourselves and our environment.
That said, there are forces that introduce disharmony into the cycles. A person who is holding anger or sorrow disrupts their own "balance", and an illness occurs. The shaman identifies the source of the disharmony, does what they can to correct it, and the person who is being treated then has an opportunity to become healed. This healed state is a state more in harmony with the native "harmonious" vibrations and cycles.

Nature has ways of being self-correcting. A disharmonious influence, like the person holding anger or sorrow, is eliminated through an early illness. If mankind chooses to abuse the earth and not practice a concern for environmental issues, the earth will "correct" Us. There are American Indian myths of the world become so poisoned that mankind is killed off except for a few survivors. The earth will then slowly (or quickly) heal the disharmonies we've introduced, and the survivors of mankind will be left with the aftermath.

What is the spirit of disharmony? Is it a deity? While (typical) shamanism holds there beings/spirits that are driven to be destructive, they are not equivalent to a dualistic being of evil. They are equivalent to the Trickster, and in mythology the Trickster is affected by his deeds just as those who accept his gifts/influence. There are degrees of disharmony and there are degrees of correct for disharmony. All degrees of disharmony and harmony are parts of the spirit of nature. Abuse of nature can lead to destructive results, but these destructive results are not necessarily a sign of an opposing spirit.

Consider the forest fires that are plaguing the West now. These seem very destructive and potentially "evil". In reality they are harmonious and part of nature's purging destructive cycle. The fires are especially bad in some areas because there has been years of fire prevention, and the undergrowth is very thick and hence very flammable. The intensity of the fire is a self-correcting part of the forest/fire cycle. Houses are destroyed. How many houses are in the wrong place? How many are on the sides of mountains where the natural wind drafts insure a fire that will move very quickly and with great intensity? How often does mankind upset the balance of nature, and then bemoan the results? How often does mankind disregard the price that we will pay for our actions as we are the actually the "being that opposes this balance and seeks to destroy the environment"?

[EMAIL #2]

From: "aragornr" <greensh@k...>
Date: Tue Jul 2, 2002 4:05 pm
Subject: Re: Question Concerning the Popular Paths

--- In Ancient_Magic@y..., "Apophis" <apophis13@b...>wrote:
> So, if the Goddess is herself symbolic of unbalance and wickedry,
and she
> has a portion of herself devoted to the destruction of this rock,
then why
> do so many of her followers struggle so to help the Earth?
Your language answers your question before you finish asking it. By stating that the Goddess is symbolic of unbalance and wickedry, you've put her in a role that her followers would almost immediately disagree with.
A truer definition of the Goddess (truer to the general thoughts of her followers) is that the destructive face of the Goddess is part of the symbolic balance. The destructive face aids balance instead of opposing it.
> In my pantheon,
> the Archangel Sandalphon would fulfill the role of maintaining
balance upon
> this Plane of Existence. There is a spirit of the earth whose
concern deals
> solely with this planet. The spirit of the earth (I don't have the
name at
> my fingertips right now) would indeed want to maintain a natural
> here. Both spirits, however, are mirrored by opposing beings. This
was the
> root of my question.

The nature based religions/spiritual systems embrace the concept of cycles (night/day, creation/destruction, hot/cold) instead of fixed opposing beings. Night does not oppose day. Night cycles into day and day cycles into night. Neither night nor day can "maintain balance" as they are both participants in the balance.

Hence the destructive face of the Goddess does not oppose her followers. The balanced spiritual path recognizes the destructive side and the creative side, and her followers struggle to both help the Earth and thus help themselves survive. The human urge to survive makes people embrace the creation of the Earth (and hence the helping of themselves) while respecting, and sometimes avoiding, the destructive side. A religion that only embraces the destructive side of the balance will itself be destroyed. The paradox is that the religion that only embraces the creation side of the balance will also be destroyed. Think about that.

Tags: earth, pagan

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