10th of Flora – Columbadi
Today is the Festival of Flowers, known in the Janite Tradition as Floralia and the Filianic Calendar as Florimaia. Flowers are sacred symbols of Our Lady. They are gifts of beauty born from Our Mother. I admit that I was never too into flowers until very recently when I started regularly placing a vase on my shrine as seen above. Now, if my flowers begin to wilt, I almost can’t bear to see the vase empty. I began in the Spring with daffodils which are a popular early flower for the year and easy to find, but they sadly go out of season rather swiftly. Now I mostly place tulips in my vase as offerings to Sophia; a rather simple but pretty flower and not too expensive to replace each week. I’m quite proud of the colour I was able to find in time for Floralia; the burning red and yellow are so gorgeous and inspire my passion to praise my Lady in all things.
As an aside, my mother taught me a good tip with tulips. Drop a penny in the vase and they don’t droop. So far it’s always worked!
There is also a magnolia tree in my garden which blooms only for a couple of months before the petals fall and practically cover my garden, but they are beautiful, and remind me of how Our Lady walked upon the blossoms thrown at her feet in celebration, yet her feet did not bruise them. That’s how gentle and peaceful Kyria Zoe is and how we, as Maids, should try to move through the Earth, harming as little as possible.
I should do a quick explanation for my shrine while I’m posting the image. Yes, it’s very cut-and-paste as I am currently still living at home and keep very quiet about my religious beliefs due to living with anti-religious parents. The image for the Daughter is sadly not very Sophian related, but is a statue of Aphrodite I picked up from Cyprus, which works well enough for the mean time (and Aphrodite is a living stream image of Madria Grace). The ‘Daughter’ card is actually a birthday card from my mother which has come in very useful. I have four small candles for when I need to call the Quarters for a proper Rite as well as a main candle for the Lady. Both the bracelet and the necklace in the bag were purchased from a cute little New Age store that has recently set up shop close to me – the bracelet I use as prayer beads. The photograph of my late dog might be the oddest thing to place on a religious altar; but she was my best friend and losing her broke my heart. While I have two living furry babies that I love just as much, I know my old girl is still watching over me as a Guardian Angel. Whether that is something accepted in Déanic theology or not, I honestly don’t care, it’s my own personal belief. At the very least; All Dogs Go To Avala.
In recent news; I have decided to go back to identifying as a Janite Filianist. This is partly due to how Déanism has recently become too broad a label to really hold much purpose for me using it to identify my beliefs. For a long time Déanism referred to faiths derived from Madrian teachings but that differed from Filianism, while still sharing the belief in Mother God. However this has now become a term for which any religion, not connected in any way to Madrianism, to identify itself so long as it believes in God as Mother. I want to stress that I don’t think this is a bad thing at all! In a patriarchal world where religion is largely masculine in language and imagery, there should be an umbrella term for those who of us who embrace the Divine Feminine to connect with each other. But with so many different beliefs and ideas under that umbrella, not all are going to agree or connect, which is inevitable. It’s a bit like a Christian constantly having to also identify themselves as Abrahamic, which they rarely do, as neither do Muslims or Jews. They may connect together sometimes in interfaith dialogue but they are largely separate, which is okay so long as there is still respect and harmony between the faiths. This I also feel can be true for Déanism.
Janite beliefs, as well as what originally was my own Sophian Filianic tradition, share much more with Filianists than just a general belief in God as Mother. We have the same scriptures, the same wheel of the year, the same idea of the Trinity and the Janati – the only differences being in choice of language and some other minor details. We do have other disagreements with the Chapel and those involved with Chelouranya, which is why we could never be the same as Orthodox Filianists, but we are still connected in other ways. I cannot speak for the entire Janite Tradition at this point if it will definite itself as Filianic, but I have decided personally to go back to identifying as Filianist, with the blessing of ArchMadria Candra Sophia. I am a Janite Filianist, though I will also call myself a Sophian now and then, as She will always be the centre of my faith as She has been for the past fifteen years or more. Whether I’ve been Pagan, Gnostic or Déanic; I was always a Sophian before anything else. But this is now implied also in the Janite name, as Sophia is our Living Stream Image of Déa.
May we always see the flowers of the earth that reflect the glory of Déa.
Blessed is She.