Tenebrae Lucem praecedunt et illa est Mater

30 07 2008

Darkness precedes Light and She is Mother

-inscription in the Salerno cathedral at the altar of the Black Madonna

Daughter of great Protogonus, divine, illustrious Rhea, to my pray’r incline,
Who driv’st thy holy car with speed along, drawn by fierce lions, terrible and strong.
Mother of Jove, whose mighty arm can wield th’ avenging bolt, and shake the dreadful shield.
Drum-beating, frantic, of a splendid mien, brass-sounding, honor’d, Saturn’s blessed queen.
Thou joy’st in mountains and tumultuous fight, and mankind’s horrid howlings, thee delight.
War’s parent, mighty, of majestic frame, deceitful saviour, liberating dame.
Mother of Gods and men, from whom the earth and lofty heav’ns derive their glorious birth;
Th’ ætherial gales, the deeply spreading sea goddess ærial form’d, proceed from thee.
Come, pleas’d with wand’rings, blessed and divine, with peace attended on our labours shine;
Bring rich abundance, and wherever found drive dire disease, to earth’s remotest bound.

-Orphic Hymn to Rhea, translated by Thomas Taylor

The second deity is actually a Mother… She functions “according to life… proceeding and vivifying all things”. She represents the prolific diversity about to be unleashed in the creation of the world, the power which imparts movement to the world through the soul, the principle of motion most proximate to the body. Proclus identifies this powerful causal entity, who is superior to the Creator himself, with the female principle of the universe. She is the Mother of the Creator, out of whose womb were born both he and the world. She is the goddess Rhea as “flux”.

-Lucas Siorvanes, Proclus: Neo-Platonic Philosophy and Science

The dyad is clearly formless, because the infinite sequence of polygons arise in actuality from triagularity and the triad, while as a result of the monad everything is together in potential, and no rectilinear figure consists of two straight lines or two angles. So what is indefinite and formless falls under the dyad alone.

[The Pythagoreans name the dyad] “Rhea”, after its flux and extension, which are the properties both of the dyad and of Nature, which is in all respects coming into being.

-from The Theology of Arithmetic attributed to Iamblichus of Chalcis


There is no dyad then in the Trinitarian true God. God is One and Three, but He is not two. Therefore, He is not feminine. But still notice how the feminine is the thought that comes immediately after God, as the Ecclesia that is the oldest of all creatures, as the Shepherd of Hermas indicates. Could not the Virgin Mary, as icon of the Ecclesia, the first thought that comes after God, and the reason that all things come into being, be the mystical dyad for us? Are these not the waters over which the Spirit of God hovered?

Interesting post on the Society of St. Pius X

30 07 2008

A balanced and interesting post by an ex-supporter of the Lefebvrist movement, found here