Sunday, December 14, 2008

Spinners & Weavers

I'm taking a day off work for rest & recuperation. I'd thought I might add a few pics to the side panel of my blog & instead got drawn into the powerful world of weaving.

I very much like the image of 'weaving' ideas, words & images.

Golden spider weaving words

Weaving creates patterns - each work is unique, the colours & designs chosen are highly individual. Wonderful word-pictures are created & the soul of the weaver shines through.

I have a feeling that a new type of communication is being born.

Word-pictures, feeling-thoughts, fractal-emotions woven on a loom that is itself in the act of being created.

Although I speak English, I am finding two very different forms of it in my daily life - the accepted structured formula of societal conversation,

& the deep, rich, harmonious, lively & colourful communication that sparkles among weavers or willing wonderers.

"Myths of weaving exist around the world as
metaphors for creation."

The spindle is often an axis mundi and its whirling whorls serve a cosmogonic function. Plato, for example, had a vision of the great goddess Ananke, "Necessity," spinning the universe; the sun, moon, and planets were her spindle's whorls; sirens sang through the webs of time and fate that she wove, and souls endlessly moved through the strands on their way to and from death and rebirth. Many goddesses are spinners and weavers: the Fates of ancient Greece; Athena, also of Greece; Neith of ancient Egypt; in Teutonic myth the Norns spin secret meanings into life;

in the American southwest, Grandmother Spider Woman spins all life from the shimmering threads in her belly"

In the beginning, there was the dark purple light at the dawn of being. Spider Woman spun a line to form the east, west, north, and south. Breath entered man at the time of the yellow light. At the time of the red light, man proudly faced his creator.

Spider Woman used the clay of the earth, red, yellow, white, and black, to create people. To each she attached a thread of her web which came from the doorway at the top of her head. This thread was the gift of creative wisdom. Three times she sent a great flood to destroy those who had forgotten the gift of her thread. Those who remembered floated to the new world and climbed to safety through the Sipapu Pole the womb of Mother Earth."
(Southwestern Native American creation story).

As I roamed the internet seeking out weavers, I realised I was digging into the deep creative essence & felt refreshed. Lately I have felt parched at work - the atmosphere feels so dried up, creative energy is a 'waste of time.'

Generally weaving seems to have been a female tradition & I've been wondering just how much things have gotten back to front - what is life without creation. I read the following two quotes & felt quenched -

"The arctic peoples believe that everything has a Mother and that all of Nature is ensouled. The most important Mothers are Mother Earth, Sun and Moon. The Sun was always female in the north - the Sun's lifegiving power after the long dark winter is experienced as the life-giving warmth of the Mother's womb."

"It should be noted that the monotheistic male god has no female mate, or consort -- and this may partially explain why the majority of the most deeply troubled and war torn areas of the earth involve that god's rigidly repressed followers, for they have been denied all access to the Divine Feminine; many, in fact, pervert any healthy relational contact with the feminine -- this peculiar perversion is embraced alike by fanatical males, whether Jews, Christians, and Moslems. Unfortunately, their indoctrinated women too often cooperate in their own debasement."

Earlier in the year I posted a link to a tale called The Wild Swans. In the story eleven princes are cursed & transformed into swans. When their sister finds out she seeks a way to break the spell. Eventually she learns what she needs;

"You can break the spell if you are prepared to suffer," whispered the fairy. "You must collect stinging nettles from a graveyard and knit eleven shirts from their soft flax. When you have finished them all, throw them over your brothers and the spell will be broken. But beware! Until you are finished you must not speak or laugh."

I felt a connection to this story & for want of a better image have held in my mind an idea that those who seek & weave truth are working on a similar quest, drawing together threads from a multitude of sources & directions to weave a spell-breaking fabric.


I came upon the rather interesting image below - "Human "spiders," free, playing effortlessly in their cosmic webs"

Is life a web that somehow we have gotten trapped in - have our non-stick shoes lost their special coating? Is the spun web something our consciousness is familiar with & is that why we're so drawn to the new world-wide one?

If we cannot spin our own tales & weave our own way through life can we ever really connect with it? My own feeling is that in order to connect with something we have to take it into ourselves & somehow make it our own.

Does knitting show us the pattern of life -could one needle symbolise our selves & the other the world? Is the wool the fabric of life? Do we need to take hold of life again & again, unravelling & reshaping it to our own specifications - or is that heresy?? Are we just supposed to bow down before the wool? Did someone tell us that the sheep gave it's wool that we might be warm & then told us in the same breath that it is too sacred for us to touch? Has the wool well & truely been pulled over our eyes?

I wonder if life is calling, if perhaps it has been calling for a very long time, to grasp hold of it & shape it according to our will - calling for us to become spinners & weavers again.