We do not begin as saints, not as already illuminated beings. We come, again and again, because we seek to become so.
Since Christmas is just a few days away, I’m re-posting something I wrote quite some time ago and posted to my blog about this time last year: A free-verse poem I call The Dream of Sol Invictus.
Many spiritual traditions celebrate some kind of winter festival of hope. Just when it seems that death will have the final word and darkness reign forever, the Sun returns and its life-giving light begins to fill the place of darkness. Soon, in the empty places hints of living things will give way to the flourishing of life.
Within a Family, no single individual lives forever, yet the Family continues to exist so long as its members choose to spread and safeguard the life they themselves inherited. The Family always has the power to triumph over death, darkness, and emptiness.
December 20, 2017
THE DREAM OF SOL INVICTUS
The innocent maiden and the wolf pup sat upon a hilltop
Rejoicing at their salvation from the pit
While the Forest Boy who commands Mighty Warriors
Danced and sang for the girl and the pup
“From the darkest place
Emerges the brightest light
The moment of despair
Engenders invincible hope
Neither fire nor ice
Neither water nor want
Neither stones from the sky
Nor the wiles of man on Earth
Will ever drive out
The roots of the Great Tree
In the place of the empty heart
The light of Sol Invictus will shine
You who feared not the darkness of the pit
Nor disdained the wickedness of men and wolves
Led them from the place of darkness
To the long-awaited kingdom of Light
Ha! Foolish men!
You thought the maiden innocent and helpless
Ha! Furious bull and raging stag!
You beheld the pup easy prey
The pup has pulled you from the pit
By the knot of hair on your head
The girl dragged you behind herself
By your horns and by your nostrils
Let us taunt them
Without mercy, without rest
Take from the shepherd his staff
Kill the fiercesome guard dog
Exterminate their fathers
Make of their sons beggars
Humiliate their women
Make of their daughters whores
What can the Forest Boy do
Before the Mighty God of War?
He laughs, he dances
He sings, he weeps
While the dead dog you offered as sacrifice
Rises from the ashes
Extinguishing the fire of war
Without even a fight”
And when the boy finished his dancing and singing
When the rivers of tears dried up
The light of Sol Invictus appeared
And the world became new again
Behold, People of War and Avenging Gods
Sol Invictus has made of you all
Peoples of the Great Heart