I belong to Apollon– the prize of my Lord. He sees me, He knows me. I yield to His word. Who I am, what I am, are extensions of Him. I walk this world primly, and am bound to His whim.
And yet, no greater freedom have I found, anywhere. For I pursue my own goals with the utmost care.
I belong to the Prince. Aegletes, Lykeios. Phosphoros, Telchinios. God of sunset and wolves. Of stars and tornadoes. None of these can ever be tamed. So it is with myself. I alone hold the reigns.
And yet, I am compelled to do as He pleases, for my head and my heart embrace all of His reasons.
I belong to Despota, the one who is Master. He who becomes the unyeilding disaster. His will becomes mine, and for it I’m grateful. His eminent knowledge spares me from what’s hateful.
And yet, I am human, and sometimes can be hurt, but Apollon knows all, and rends lies in the dirt.
I belong to the God with the serene smile. But make no mistake. With Him, life is a trial. In all that I am, and in all that I do, He pushes and moulds me ’til I acknowledge His veiw.
And yet, through His shaping I am made better– more whole. For such is the fate of the untempered soul.
— Columbine [Aegletia, Day 3]
I have to be honest. Artemis terrifies me. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because I’ve never really tried to have a relationship with Her and I feel like that may cause Her to dislike me. I know that She looks at me harshly sometimes, but that’s on me. There are many things which I could improve upon just to satisfy Her Brother more, and She knows that, and probably would rather I change my behavior than continue on not doing what I should to please Him. But that’s only one possible reason.
In my youth, I spent a lot of time with Hekate, but none at all with Artemis. I know that many of Their attributes intersect, and I wonder if the things I could have been learning from Artemis at that time were actually being taught by Hekate. It could be, though I do recall having sort of a passing interest in Her, that was due mainly to the general Pagan scene in my area, which was very much rooted in Goddess Spirituality. Artemis was always very popular in those communities. However, it never really went anywhere. I probably just didn’t know enough about the authentic Artemis for Her to be interested, especially since I was so thoroughly steered away from Reconstructionism at the time.
[I am not a Reconstructionist now, by the way, and I never have been. But, if I had not been so put off by the (probably exaggerated) stories I’d heard from other Pagans, it probably wouldn’t have taken so long for me to find my way to Polytheism.]
But what excuse do I have now? Well, none actually. I get a little shaky and apprehensive when I acknowledge that fact, because it means I have to do something to initiate and maintain a relationship with Her. And She’s still terrifying, but you know, when it comes right down to it, all the Gods and Goddesses are terrifying. So, what exactly is it that keeps me from delving into Her lore as readily as I delved into Apollon’s, or Dionysos’, or Zeus’?
I don’t have an answer yet for that. When I remember my younger years, especially those before I became a teenager, I can clearly see similarities between myself and Her. I was wild thing, at least in my own mind. I had a very strict mother, who didn’t put up with many of the things my sister had gotten away with before me. But deep in my heart, I felt more like some beast living its life free in the mountains. Oh, how I wanted to live a life like that! To be alone, and to roam one’s habitat without any expectation other than that of survival…
Of course, looking back on it from the perspective of an adult, I can see how terribly naive I was. I wouldn’t have lasted an hour, let alone a day, trying to subsist by myself in any fashion, anywhere. And indeed, Artemis is not alone. She may be free, She may be Her own Person, She may never, ever have to depend upon Anyone, but She is far from alone. And I doubt She would even want to be.
All of this is what’s been churning in my mind today, as we welcome Artemis into our homes for the third day of Aegletia. I know She has arrived here, because I very much feel like these thoughts were not instigated by me. Up until I awoke this morning, I hadn’t given all that much thought on how I would personally try to relate to Her today.
Certainly I’d devised some activities to share with my daughter, but that’s about as far as it went. There were no elaborate offerings planned, just some nice words and a quick prayer as I crawled out of bed. There was no desire for meditating on Her nature, because as I’ve said before, She’s terrifying, and She’d already been too close for comfort by having haunted my dreams last night. But, that could never be enough, could it? No. I don’t think so.
And that is why I have written the following brief prayer to show Her honor. Though I doubt I will have any kind of deep interaction with Her in the near future, what with my wimpiness when it comes to Her energy, I can begin to scratch at the surface of things unsaid, and things undone.
Brave Artemis, who did not shy away, even as the pangs of childbirth swept over Her Mother, I honor You, who with deft hands only just born, delivered the Light of the World into the world.
Confident Artemis, so sure of Her prowess, who did ask Her Father to sanction Her enviable freedom, I honor You, who roams the wild woman spaces, collecting the free maidens and keeping them free.
Loyal Artemis, who loves Her Brother beyond knowing, I honor you, who by some versions released the arrow which pierced the heart of unfaithful Koronis, thus protecting the Bright One’s honor.
Fierce Artemis, who, along with Her Brother, destroyed an entire clan for their offensive insult toward Their Mother, I honor you and the drive to mete out justice.
Artemis, I thank you for all that you do to keep the Cosmic Order. I thank you for the strength that you provide to women in need; all those who seek for your guidance. I thank you for the protection of the young, those like my own child, who know you well. And I thank you kindly for the light which you reflect, that of your dear Brother, shining magnificently upon this world.
Hail to you, Beloved Artemis! Hail and Praise!
— Columbine [Aegletia, Day 3]
I often find myself wondering why I don’t feel as if I’m Apollon’s. I don’t feel particularly Hellenic, or much like an embodiment of the Delphic Maxims. I’m often disappointed at my behavior, especially my love of wasting time and over indulging in sweets. I don’t do many formal rituals, I don’t give many offerings, and I don’t really pray that much. I feel like such a waste.
Which often leads to purification. Tonight was a bath of salt and peppermint, meant to give me yet another “fresh start.” And it actually did, but in a way I didn’t expect.
As I came out, I realized something that should’ve been obvious to me from the beginning.
Being His is a daily choice. It’s a choice I have to make every hour, every minute, every second. It isn’t some big, flashy moment of clarity, or His presence, or a bracelet on my wrist. It’s the choices I make and how I choose to bring Him into this world. It’s whether I choose to bring Him into this world. If I want to be my Lord Apollon’s, and I want to live with Him and in Him every day, I must make that desicion every day.
At first, I panicked thinking that it would be impossible, that I would have to watch myself constantly. And yes, it will require more self-discipline on my part. But in the end, He’s leading me. He leads me through that intution I constantly ignore, the intuition that I know is alignment with Him. If I can just listen to that little voice, His voice, I can be His. It’s only a matter of whether I choose to.
I’m beginning to believe this is how I might follow Him this winter, to His abode far away. And how I might keep Him in my heart and soul, closer than ever.
— Atalanta [Day 3]
I have come now to gather you; all My lovely little swans.
In July, hear My whisper. It teases your ear with sweet, unbending promises. And My arm circles you, and My hand rests upon your chest, above that beating heart.
Shhh… I’ll not harm you.
There is a Land far from here, far from what you know, wherein I will spend the longs months. You may accompany Me, if you dare. How many of My blessed ones would dare? How many?
In August, I begin to tire of this world, and of the way it distracts you from Me. My grip is hard. I take you in the dark. I drain you. I dismantle you. I make you a part of Me. And you enjoy this.
In September, I am cold and aloof, and I begin my withdrawal. There is very little left, except: “Come with Me? Would you dare?” Some of you answer: “I will.” I only want the ‘I wills’.
Now, in October, I am seen once more. I come in the frigid wave of air accompanying Autumn storms, like the hurried fangs of the Wolf. I am upon you, and I say again:
Come with Me. Do not hesitate. Come with Me. Do not be afraid. Come with Me.
Do you dare? What will you do?
This is a messaged channeled through me, by our Prince, Apollon, to whomever it may be for. Ultimately, only you can be the true judge of that.
— Columbine [Day 3]