One of the common stories that bind people together are origin stories. They help people find a common cultural narrative by which they can commune with the world. As an orphan of my ancestral home land, I have long sought my own re-indigification with the land I find myself upon, yet I have always struggled with where I could set down my roots in America without committing cultural appropriation. How can we European orphans become an indigenous culture in a land that has been terrorized by our active desecration of it? Where can we root into the land so we may begin healing ourselves? And how can we start to incorporate the agency of the land and all its constituents in our everyday lives?
Well these are all great questions and I am still working on them personally, but this story is my own discovery of a deeper realm calling to me, a kind of courting of the answers to these questions. I feel there is a place for us orphans, but it is a place of trial, responsibility and humility towards the land. We are invited by the land to lay down our roots, but with this invitation comes a great responsibility to honor and protect our gracious host.
Whenever I feel lost, I return to this creation myth and regain my resolve, for I believe this story has something deeper than truth swimming in its waters, a kind of enchantment that we see in a sun rise or in the playing of new song. I hope this emergence story can be a catalyst that helps sprout the seeds of your own enchantment, and I hope that it gives you the same sense of grounding and origination it has given me.
It was in between the Stories that our people were born. The Liminal Goddess, the weaver and gatekeeper of transition, had a need for a people that could weave the old into the new. She gathered up the compost of the old story that had been ravaged by the great eater Wetiko, and She began to spin Her web.
From the old story came the grief and the sorrows of the Earth. She took the pain of the land and wove it into the web. She opened the gates of the underworld and took the spirits of the dead, the spectres of culture, the hauntings of myth and the orphan wisdom of our long lost ancestors, from which She made our roots. She set these roots firmly into the underworld of the Earth and wove them intricately into it’s dreaming mind. The Earth accepted these roots as a gift and as a promise. This promise was that these new people of the Liminal Goddess would be a part of the Earth and would no longer turn away from their Mother.
From the “in between” She breathed her own essence into us, the power to weave, the desire to always be in transition, always moving toward the unknown and revering the Mystery. She attached our trunk to the middle world of Earth, to ensure that the physical and spiritual would never be separated again. For it was in the middle world that the old people became lost due to their uprooting from the dreaming intelligence of their Mother. They had begun to see the world as dead and could no longer hear their Mother. By weaving our trunks out of the liminal realms, we could always be capable of sensing the world in all its forms at once. We would no longer suffer separation.
And then the great Goddess pulled back the veil of time and reached into the ancient future. And She took from it the endlessness. She wove it into our branches so that our flowers would become whatever we made them. So that our meaning and purpose would be our co-creation and not some bounded fate. She gave to us the ability to entangle meaning and matter. And it was in her ability to weave into us meaninglessness, that we were given our freedom to make meaning. She attached our branches into the higher worlds so that we could use our magical arts to communicate with the greater intelligent beings. For it was in our ability to connect our minds and cocreate that a greater connective consciousness could emerge to guide us into the ancient future.
She tied us all together with the thread of Interbeing, so that what was inside of us was outside and what was outside would be inside. When we were complete She said to us “awake into this liminal world and start weaving the stories together”. The first being awoke and they were neither male or female, but were instead androgynous. Within them was the multitude of the Woven. And the Goddess said, “you shall be called Woven”
And so it was that the first Woven was born, spun and tied together by the hands of the Dark Lady Herself, the Goddess of Liminality, the Weaver of the World, so that the stories could once more be woven together for a new age to emerge.
Art by Jen Delyth