Let us call upon the Holy Sophia, the supernal mother of our souls, and celestial bride of our spirits: Daughter of Infinite Light, born of enlightened love; merciful and compassionate, embodiment of perfect wisdom; begotten in Eternity, beyond Time and Space, With what words shall we praise Thee, or with what thoughts comprehend Thy majesty? Utterance must profane Thee; silence itself can bear witness to Thee. How shall we extoll Thee? In what shall we shadow forth Thy great glory among us? From the Collect of the Gnostic liturgy for Sept. 8th. (A)
Deanism teaches that Living Stream Goddesses may be used as Forms or Images for Dea. For Janites, though we are not Gnostic, the Divine Sophia is our Living Stream Form for Dea. Many regard Her as Mother, Daughter and Holy Soul. Others know Her as the Holy Spirit. Janites understand Her to be Mother, Daughter and Absolute Deity (the Monas).
As we know, the Divine Sophia was demoted from Her original position as Gnostic Christianity took hold. And, unfortunately, even in the most favorable of Gnostic texts, those texts which do not hold the Divine Sophia as fallen or trapped, Daughter Sophia is blamed for the Fall one way or the other. Syrian Gnosis is one of the few exceptions where there is no idea of a fallen or trapped Sophia.
Despite this, there are many correlations between the Mythos of Sophia and the Mythos as found in our scriptures. Today, we will begin where we left off in Part II, which was the Nativity story of the Three Princesses as found in Chapter II of the Mythos of the Divine Maid/Holy Daughter, verses 20-30.
From the Nativity Story, we move on to the Holy Daughter leaving the Light of Her Mother and taking on Fate (Chapter III, verses 10-22). Sophia does something similar. She must separate Herself from Her Mother so that She may begin Her Descent. She, also, must take on Fate. She, also, must be stripped of Her Glory.
As Caitlin Matthews so beautifully states in her book, Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom , Bride of God, “Sophia evicts Herself from the Fullness of Heaven (Pleroma) and wanders homeless across the world, only to lodge in the hearts of Her faithful children who still remember their Divine Mistress. She puts off Her Glory and covers Herself with a Veil”. (This is one of many reasons we veil during formal prayer, the RoS and the liturgy, because our Goddesses, the Celestial Mary and Sophia, are veiled. The veil is highly symbolic).
Interestingly enough, Chapter IV, in the Mythos of the Divine Maid contains a story which is highly reminiscent of the Temptation of Christ in the Desert. Like the Christ, the Holy Daughter remains faithful to Her mission. Similar to the Holy Daughter, we find that in various Sophian texts, Daughter Sophia goes through Her Own drama before Her Descent through the Seven Realms.
Before we begin the Descent of the Holy Daughter, I would like to quote something scholar Caitlin Matthews has so eloquently stated, something that I have often spoken of myself (not so eloquently) and something that has been felt by many women for generation upon generation. Again, from Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom, Bride of God “ This account of the Fall cannot help but be read as patronizing by any woman. Many more extreme fulminations against the sin of Eve abound, all based squarely on biblical precedent. Western women, both Christian and Jewish, have lived in their shadow for many hundreds of years. Eve’s punishment for her desire for knowledge is to suffer in her sexuality by bearing children. Eve’s punishment for her desire for knowledge is to suffer in her sexuality by bearing children (I assume she means in great pain which is what the bible said). Sophia’s punishment for presuming to either create by Herself or to see Her origins is to bear a child that will trap her vital power in matter. By extension, all women still suffer in their sexuality as a result of this myth’s social influence.And, indeed, we have suffered in many other ways, too. Especially when we have been considered to be spiritually inferior.
So, to the Gnostics, the Father could create by Himself, but the Female could not.
There are several versions of what happens to Sophia. In On the Origin of the World, Sophia is Saviouress and Her Daughter breathes the Life-Spirit into Adam. But, in other Myths, She falls through the Seven Realms or Seven Density-Vibrations and becomes trapped as the World Soul.
However, if we look to the Mythos of the Kabbalistic Shekinah, keeping in mind that the Shekinah and Sophia are One, the Descent is voluntary, out of love for humanity. Likewise, the Syrian Gnostics, were said to have taught: There is here, as yet, no thought of a fall, properly so called, as in the Valentinian system. The power which has thus overflowed leftwards, makes a voluntary descent into the lower waters, confiding in its possession of the spark of true light. It is, moreover, evident that though mythologically distinguished from the humectatio luminis (Greek: ikmas phōtos, ἰκμὰς φωτός), the Sophia is yet, really nothing else but the light-spark coming from above, entering this lower material world, and becoming here the source of all formation, and of both the higher and the lower life. She swims over the waters, and sets their hitherto immoveable mass in motion, driving them into the abyss, and taking to herself a bodily form from the hylē. She compasses about, and is laden with material every kind of weight and substance, so that, but for the essential spark of light, she would be sunk and lost in the material. Bound to the body which she has assumed and weighed down thereby, she seeks in vain to make her escape from the lower waters, and hasten upwards to rejoin her heavenly mother. Not succeeding in this endeavour, she seeks to preserve, at least, her light-spark from being injured by the lower elements, raises herself by its power to the realm of the upper region, and these spreading out herself she forms out of her own bodily part, the dividing wall of the visible firmament, but still retains the aquatilis corporis typus. Finally seized with a longing for the higher light, she finds, at length, in herself, the power to raise herself even above the heaven of her own forming, and to fully lay aside her corporeity. The body thus abandoned is called “Woman from Woman.” (4)
We can see from this that not only did the Descent cause Her suffering, but, as with the Holy Daughter in the Deanic Scriptures, the Descent of Sophia was absolutely necessary for Creation.
Again, quoting Caitlin Matthews in Sophia, Bride of God, ” This image is one of Sophia, no longer the veiled bride awaiting Her bridegroom, but the glorious Virgin of Light Who descends willingly from Her place apart to partake of the drama of life’s restoration to the light.“
Sophia is the Mistress of the Ogdoad that is, the Seven Planetary Spheres and the Eighth realm of the fixed stars or the Seven Heavens and the region above them. The eighth region is considered to be superior to the Seven Realms. The mystical number seven, symbolic of the Sophian mysteries, are to be found in Her descent of the Seven Levels, Her Seven Pillars, Her Seven Sorrows, Her Seven Archangels Who came from Her Light, and Her Seven Female Aeons, not to mention the Seven Gifts and the Seven Spirits.
As with the Passion Mythos of the Holy Daughter, (Chapter V, verses 1-17). the Descent through the Seven vibratory-densities was excruciating to Daughter Sophia. We learn, from Tau Malachi: ” On a metaphysical level there is something more within this story, however, for the descent of the Bride (Sophia) into exile and bondage is her crucifixion upon the cross of the world; she goes down into the ignorance and darkness to gather holy sparks into herself, so that arising from the darkness she might carry those sparks in ascent with her. Thus, she is acting as the Savioress….” (3) (Here he is referring to the Divine Sparks of Sophia which reside in our souls).
ArchMadria Pamela Lanides
2 Sources: Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom, the book of Proverbs and On the Origin of the World.
O, Sai Rhea, Shield of Steadfastness, Temperance and Self-Restraint, be with us. Blessed are You.
Setpena to Sai Raya Thea:
(Say for seven days).
O, Glorious Agia Theia, brightly shining One, be with us. O, Resplendent One, clothed in radiant gold, dazzling as the Sun, hear our prayer.
Illumine us with Truth and instil in us the sweetness which comes with a serene mind and a joy-filled heart. Help us to remember that joy comes from within and not from without. May we learn to nurture it in our hearts that it may overflow unto others who might be in need of the flame of cheer and comfort in their lives. And may (state request).
Blessed are You.
Today, as part of our series on the correlations of Divine Sophia and our Clear Recital scriptures, we are going to take a moment to discover the relationship between Sophia and the Seven Janati.
At the end of this article is a very exciting discovery, a lengthy article showing my own thealogy that the Holy Spirit is Seven-fold.
Holy Sophia is associated with the Divine Seven in different ways. In Gnosticism, She emanates/creates the Seven Feminine Aeons; in the book of Proverbs, She sends out her Seven Virgin Handmaidens and She has hewn out the Seven Pillars and as the Holy Spirit in Christianity, Who is more appropriately called Mother Spirit as in ancient times, She sends forth the Seven Rays of the Gifts.
In Gnosticism, Sophia is the Ruler of the Seven Planetary Powers, however, these Powers are Archons. (i.e. not the good guys) and in Gnostic cosmology, Sophia triumphs over them and becomes Ruler over the Seven Spheres.
In her book, Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom, Bride of God, author and scholar, Caitlin Matthews includes a picture of an unusual statue of Sophia made of rosewood where She is holding a seven pointed star. This sculpture based upon a vision or apparition that was experienced by the artist, Bryce Muir. This star signifies Her overcoming of the seven planetary Archons and Her rising to become the Mother of the Ogdoad or Eighth Realm. Ms. Matthews goes on to state that “the Descents of Sophia, like the Seven-fold Descent of Inanna to the Underworld, pass through all levels of experience making Sophia a potent Companion to all souls.”
These Aeons were male and female. The Female Aeons are: Rejoicing; Blessedness; Love; Peace; Gladness; Truth and Faith. Like the Janae, these Seven Aeons are both Divine, having emanated from Holy Sophia and They are also angelic in Being.
In some (though not all) Gnostic texts, Aeons are often referred to as being androgynous. A better way to think of them is that they are ‘twin souls’. We must remember that there are many different cosmologies in Gnosticism and various belief systems as well. While some Gnostics understood the Aeons to be androgynous, others thought of them as Primordial Ideas, while still others believed they were syzygies or ‘yoked pairs’, the latter being the Janite point of view. They are Light Beings and are sometimes likened to angels. And so, similar to the Deanic/Filianic teachings on the Janae, they are both Divine and angelic.
Artist: Victoria Moore
Moving on to Proverbs, the Divine Sophia has sent out Her Seven Virgins or Handmaidens and has ‘hewn out Her Seven Pillars”.
Now, keep in mind, when Wisdom is personified in the biblical texts, we capitalize the W. Wisdom personified is Sophia. When wisdom is not being personified, we do not capitalize the first letter.
In this particular text, Wisdom is personified. Wisdom, Sophia, sends out Her Handmaidens to invite everyone to Her feast of wisdom. Ms. Matthews states, that the Handmaidens are the assessors of Wisdom.
It would not be until the Middle Ages when they would be transformed into the Daughters of Sophia and an English cleric, Alcuin (735-804 AD) would associate the Seven Pillars with the Seven Liberal Arts.
These Handmaidens are depicted on the right-hand doorway of the Portail Royal at Chartres. The central figure is the Black Virgin of Wisdom, the Virgin Mary being surrounded by the Seven Handmaidens representing the Liberal Arts. As Albert the Great taught that Mary, herself was the possessor of the Seven Liberal Arts. Elsewhere, Ms. Matthews explains that the Seven Pillars have also been conflated with h the Seven Liberal Arts, the seven days of the week, the seven heavens and the Holy Spirit .
As we can see, there is a correlation between each of the Seven Liberal Arts and the Janati, Themselves.
Dialectic/Mercury/Sai Mati Sage.
Rhetoric/Venus/Sai Sushuri Grace
Music/Sun/Sai Raya Theia.
The purification of the soul, through the seven planetary experiences, was common to many cultures and traditions. (Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom and Bride of God).
So, here we have Seven Handmaidens of Sophia and the Seven Pillars of Wisdom. We will revisit these Seven Handmaidens when we study the correlation of Divine Sophia as our High Priestess.
Now, we look at the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit. Sophia is the Holy Spirit both pre- Christian and Christian.
The Seven Planetary Powers of Pagan Tradition become the seven gifts of the Spirit in Christianity: Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety (Faith) and Fear of God (nowadays this is rendered as Awe PL)….(Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom and Bride of God).
This amazes me. I had already correlated the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit with the Seven Janae before I had read this.
Ms. Matthews, in her above-mentioned book, does a fine job of showing forth Sophia as the Holy Spirit. The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit are often referred to as individual spirits, the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord, etc.
The New Testament speaks about The Seven Spirits of God. In Rev., these Seven Spirits are also known as the Seven Lamps which are before the throne of God. And it talks about ‘He who has the Seven Spirits of God.” This is a much neglected concept within Christianity probably due to the fact that it would call into question the theology of the Trinity and yet, these Seven Spirits of God are mentioned a few times in the New Testament.
The above mentioned article expertly disproves the various theories about the identity of the Seven Spirits. The author even mentions the Three-Fold Spirits of Heaven and the Four-fold Spirits of Earth…. Deanic teaching right there of the Janati!!!!
The author begins his summary thusly: It is erroneous to argue that the seven Spirits are seven angels, and it is insufficient to claim that the title the seven Spirits refers to the Spirit of God merely in a general way. It is not even adequate to assert that the seven Spirits are the Spirit of God in the fullness or completeness of His energies or operation. The title the seven Spirits, like all appellations of the Spirit, unveils something very particular concerning the divine Spirit.
While quite lengthy, this is a remarkable article and it is highly recommended as one of the ways of understanding the Janae.
In summary, Divine Sophia is the Ruler of the Planetary Powers; She emanates the Seven Feminine Aeons; She sends out Her Seven Handmaidens and hews out the Seven Pillars of Wisdom which have variously been identified, as Ms. Matthews explains, with the Seven Liberal Arts, the seven days of the week, the seven heavens and the Holy Spirit and finally, She is the Seven-Fold Holy Spirit, Who, as Caitlyn Matthews so beautifully depicts in her book, holds the Seven Spirits in Her lap as Doves, ready to be sent out into the world.
I would like to conclude with this prayer to the Janati by Sorella Roselyn.
[inspired by the Faith of the Seven in A Song of Ice and Fire]
May Lady Theia fill our hearts with joy,
May Lady Candra keep us pure in spirit,
May Lady Grace enfold us in her love,
May Lady Vicka strengthen our courage,
May Lady Thame balance the scales of justice,
May Lady Sage enlighten our minds with truth,
May Lady Rhea guide us safely through the dark.
May the Seven Rays of Déa shine down upon our souls, in this world and all the worlds to come.
By the Mother, the Daughter, and the Great Mysteria,
Day of Sai Mati Sage, Messenger of Intelligence, Wisdom and Creativity
O, Sai Mati Sage, be with us.
WHO IS SOPHIA
SOPHIA IS DIVINE PRIMORDIAL CREATRIX
ZOE-EVE, THE SUPERNAL EVE, IS THE FIRST DAUGHTER
Who is Sophia? Sophia is the Holy Spirit of the Christian Trinity . She is the Prime Creatrix. She and the Shekinah are essentially the same Person, in fact it was the Alexandrian Jews who renamed Khokhmah, Sophia/Wisdom. Both the Shekinah and Sophia are known as the pre-Christian Holy Spirit. Both are known as the World Soul. Both are known as saviouress.
Sophia is not ‘a’ Goddess of Wisdom, She is Primordial Wisdom. She is also Primordial Creatrix. She is Mother God. Her Daughter is literally the Daughter of Wisdom. She also is known by more than just the title of Wisdom, She is known, even to the ancients as Holy Spirit, (1) All-Mother, Ennoia, meaning Primordial Thought or Idea, Ruler, Barbelo, Creatrix, Saviour, Womb of Creation, World Soul, Rose of the World, Pistis (Faith), Sige (Silence), Charis (Grace) and by many other titles.
As the Barbelo (Higher Sophia and She is NOT male as some have tried to depict Her), She is the First Glory from Whom Originated the Trinity of the Father, Mother and Son. She existed within the All and She is the “Invisible One within the All”.
As far as Her supposed ‘ Fall and entrapment’ is concerned, as we shall see in the near future, it is clear that the Gnostic Christians literally took pre-Christian texts and changed them in a way that completely demoted the Divine Sophia and made Her subject to a male Consort (the Christ).Others literally turned Her into being a male, Jesus. Until Christianity, Wisdom, like the Holy Spirit, was always Female. (See: http://www.asphodel-long.com/html/goddesses_of_wisdom.html.)
(It is important to note that Russian Orthodox mystics and visionaries of Sophia believed Her to be a fourth member of the Christian Trinity. But, of course, the Orthodox Christian Church labeled that as heresy.)
AND SO, SOPHIA IS GOD
The following is taken from valid Sophian sources. For each Deanic scriptural verse, I have only included one or two companion Sophian verses, although there are many more. Please note that I did not also avail myself of Russian Sophian Mystics sources nor did I quote the various scholars of Sophia as Mother, Daughter and Holy Soul as time would not permit me to do so.
How does Sophia fulfill Deanic Mythos? Let me count the ways:
(All Deanic quotes are taken from the Sacred Myths and Rites of the Madrians. And, rather than using the term God, I have substituted Godhead).
Deanic: Before and beyond all things is the Mistress (Mother) of All Things, and when nothing was, She was.
Sophian: As described by Irenaeus, the great Mother-principle of the universe appears as the first woman, the Holy Spirit (rūha d’qudshā) moving over the waters, and is also called the mother of all living. Jesus, himself called the Holy Spirit his Mother not only in the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas, but it was originally in the lost Gospel of the Hebrews as evidenced by (2).
In the beginning were Darkness, Chaos, and Water (skotos, kai bythos, kai hydōr), but the Spirit indwelling in the midst of them, divided them one from another. (Epiphanus. The rest of the passage makes clear that the Spirit was Feminine.) (3)
“I am the First and the Last.” (Thunder, Perfect Mind).
Deanic: The rest of the first chapter of The Creation Mythos goes on to explain, in story form, how Dea is the Creatrix.
Aside from the wealth of beautiful passages regarding Wisdom/Sophia in the Book of the Wisdom of Solomon (and here, Wisdom is not just abstract, but is personified), written by Alexandrian Jews, we have many passages from various sources describing Sophia as Primordial Creatrix. Here are just a few:
Sophia is “the Creatrix of the Universe” (4)
Now, when Sophia, who is in the lower heaven, wanted to receive authority from Pistis, (Her Mother) She created great luminaries and all the stars, and put them in the heaven to shine upon the earth and to perfect chronological signs and seasons and years and months and days and nights and seconds, and so on. And thus everything up in the sky was ordered. (5)
“I divided earth from heaven, I created the ways of the stars.”
The Sophia herself is but a reflex of the “Mother of all living” and is therefore also called “Mother.” She is the formatrix of heaven and earth, for as much as mere matter can only receive form through the light which, coming down from above has interpenetrated the dark waters of the hylē; but she is also at the same time the spiritual principle of life in creation, or, as the world-soul the representative of all that is truly pneumatic in this lower world. (Wiki)
Sophia is responsible for the conception of matter (The Valentinian Cosmology, The Secret Book of John). Like Eurynome, she moves back and forth over the primordial waters.(6)
SOPHIA IS THE PRIMORDIAL CREATRIX OF THE UNIVERSE
Who is the First Daughter?
Deanic: Chapter I:9: And She saw an image of Herself, all suffused in the Light of Love and Energy. And She laughed. 10) And as She laughed, the image rose up from the water and stood before Her. And this was the first of Her daughters.
When Sophia let a drop of light fall, it floated on the water. Immediately a human being appeared, being androgynous. She molded that drop first as a female body. Afterward she molded it, with the body, in the likeness of the mother who appeared, and she finished it in twelve months.
Eve is the first virgin who gave birth without a man. She is the one who functioned as her own midwife. I am part of my Mother and I am the Mother). (On the Origin of the World.)
Sophia, also using Light and water, created the First Daughter, Eve.
The Holy Mother, Pistis Sophia, sent forth the emanation of Herself – Her Daughter, Sophia Zoe, who appeared as Supernal Eve . (Teachings of Tau Malachi).
After the day of rest, Sophia sent Zoe, Her daughter, who is called Eve, as an instructor to raise up Adam, in whom there was no soul, so that those whom he would produce might become vessels of the light. (On the Origin of the World).
Also, in the early Greek and Syriac Churches. Note the Eucharistic prayer in the Syrian liturgy.
The author of the Gospel according to Philip clearly sees the Spirit as female, and it is this, evidently Semitic, tradition that is represented in a number of early Syriac works where we encounter the Spirit as Mother.(20) The Acts of Thomas, perhaps of the third century, is the earliest of these. This work, whose original language was Syriac (this is now generally agreed), survives in a re-worked Syriac form and in a Greek translation which was made from a more primitive form of the Syriac original. Thus, in the course of several prayers uttered by Judas Thomas, the Greek text includes several invocations to the Holy Spirit as ‘Mother’; in the surviving Syriac, however, this term is always absent, presumably having been removed on the grounds that it was no longer considered appropriate. The relevant passages in the Greek text are as follows:(21)
§27 [In a baptismal context; the invocation is addressed to both the Son and the Spirit.] Come, holy name of Christ, which is above every name; come Power of the Most High, and perfect mercy; come exalted gift [i.e. the Holy Spirit]; come, compassionate mother . . . [For ‘compassionate mother’ the Syriac has nothing corresponding.]
§50 [An invocation to the Spirit in the context of the Eucharist.] . . . Come, hidden mother . . . come, and make us share in this Eucharist which we perform in your name, and [make us share] in the love to which we are joined by invoking you. [The Syriac again removes the reference to the Spirit as ‘mother’.]
§133 [In the course of a trinitarian invocation in the context of the Eucharist.] We name over you [the newly baptised] the name of the Mother. [Syriac: the name of the Spirit.]
to be continued
ArchMadria Pamela Lanides
(We apologize for those of our articles which now have incorrect foot note markers and sudden endings. Our site underwent some unexpected issues which we are trying to resolve. Thank you.)
2) It’s reported by ”Church father” Origen, that the Jewish Gospel of the Hebrews, said by other fathers to be at one time the Gospel of Matthew but interpolated and edited, the virgin birth being excised and this fascinating bit of information.
Origen, Commentary on John, 2.6
“If anyone should lend credence to the Gospel of the Hebrews, where the Saviour Himself says:
“My Mother, the Holy Spirit took me just now by one of my hairs and carried me off to the great Mt. Tabor.”
Origen quotes this twice and Jerome five times.
Jerome, Commentary on Isaiah, 11.9
After repeating the quote he says:
“No one should be offended by this, because ‘spirit’ in Hebrew is feminine, while in our language [Latin] it is masculine and in Greek it is neuter. http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread1150511/pg1 (Also, look up the Gospel of the Hebrews for verification of this lost gospel.)
3) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sophia_(Gnosticism) (for both Iraneaus and Epiphanus quotes. Please keep in mind, when reading Gnostic texts, that we will be showing, in the future, how much of Gnostic Christianity was a CLEAR demotion of Divine Barbelo/Sophia).
4) Eugnostos the Blessed (non-Christian) III.82.5
5) On the Origin of the World: http://gnosis.org/naghamm/origin-Barnstone.html
Day of Sai Raya Theia, Lamp of Illumination, Joy and Benevolence. O, Sai Raya Theia, be with us. Blessed are You.
Tomorrow, within marks the most somber day of the year. In Janite Tradition, these next two days are called Tenebrae, which means Darkness.
On this day, Janite females are veiled while Janite male devotees wear a hat. Veiling for females make take the form of a wide headband, scarf, kerchief, veil, hat, mantilla. Normally, a silk rose would be included in this list, but not for Tenebrae. The colors should be black, indigo or purple/violet.
There should be no lit candles on the altar and all statues and icons removed.
Janites do not have mandatory fasting laws because everyone’s health and circumstances differ. At the very least, we recommend abstaining from alcohol and sweets. The rest is up to the devotee. However, we caution against being overly scrupulous. Fast with moderation.
On the first day of Tenebrae, 28 Moura/March 19, we preform a lustration. This is a ritual bath or shower of purification.
This is the time when the Celestial Mother, in Her Daughter Form, descends down through the Seven Realms. Each Realm is a lower vibration and each becomes more dense. This causes excruciating suffering for She Who loves us so much, to the point that in Janite thealogy, which is based upon that of Sophia/Shekina, Her Most Pure Soul Shattered as a crystal chandelier might shatter should it fall to the floor from the ceiling.
The Mythos of Shekinah/Sophia.
Sources for this Myth of the Divine Shattering of Shekinah/Sophia may be found within certain traditions of Kabbalism, in Gnostic schools of thought and in ancient Syrian Gnostic Christianity.
In Kabbalistic teaching: “For, it is the Shekinah that is ascribed by Kabbalists to be the Middle Pillar of Balance that unites the opposites, just as the soul allows for the opposites of body and spirit to unite, so too does the Shekinah play this role for us. Indeed, the Shekinah is the Soul of Man, what Kabbalists call the Neshamah, for She has given a portion of Herself in order for each human to come into being in this world. In giving of Herself to humans, in this state of physical density and isolation, the World Soul becomes shattered. This shattering can be metaphorically grasped in considering what might happen to a glass alembic or flask when too much pressure is put upon in the alchemical works. Thus, the Shekinah represents the ultimate archetype of selfless sacrifice. All Her sacrifices have been for the benefit of creation so that humankind may experience this life in order to fulfill its destiny and purpose.
The Shekinah plays another very important role in the story of creation, and in particular in the Great Plan of humankind. It is believed that in man’s fall to a denser, less perfect state of being in the physical, the Shekinah stayed with us as we separated from God or were exiled from the ‘Garden’. Thus, the Shekinah, once again, was voluntarily removed from God/En Sof in order for us to have our experience. She has always stayed with us, wherever we were exiled or isolated or shut out, the Shekinah was always there in exile and isolation with us.” 
The following is, what I think is the best definition of Sophia as the World Soul as written by an Episcopalian Priest:
“As the living centre or Soul of all creatures […] She includes the manifoldness of living souls; She is all of humanity together in one, or the Soul of the World. She is ideal humanity, containing all individual living creatures or souls and uniting them through Herself […]. Her task is to mediate and unify the manifoldness of living creatures, who constitute the actual content of Her life and the absolute unity of God.
She contains all living creatures, She is the unity that binds them, and Her work in the world is to unify outwardly that which is already one in essence—in Her.” (Episcopal Priest, Father Matthew Wright.) 
The hauntingly beautiful Mari-Anna chant, as found on the Chapel of Our Mother God, is most especially appropriate for these two days of Tenebrae, of Darkness. Two days that are both in and out of time. This solemn and gentle chant has always reminded me of the the Traditional Catholic Stabat Mater, an hymn that was sung in honor of the sufferings of the Blessed Virgin Mary during the Stations of the Cross on Good Friday. Please note that Traditional Catholic refers to the pre-Vat. II Church and those modern Chapels and Societies which follow the Traditional Catholic religion. We are not referring to the post-Vatican II Church known as the Novus Ordo or New Order.
Feast of Jana Madria Sage
1st Astrea / November 28th
Salvation has come to us; from thee is salvation.
Thou art wisdom, thou knowledge; thou art truthfulness.
On account of thee is life; from thee is life.
On account of thee is mind; from thee is mind.
Thou art mind, thou a world of truthfulness,
thou a triple power, thou threefold.
The Three Steles of Seth, an Egyptian Gnostic scripture http://www.gnosis.org/naghamm/steles.html
O, Lady Sofia, Jana of Intelligence, Intuition and Wisdom, be with us. May the Pure Stream of your Virtues flow within me, in this world and in all the worlds to come.
Winter is the Season ruled over by one of the Janae of the Four-fold Earth. These govern the four cardinal directions and their corresponding Elements and Seasons and therefore, they are known as the Janae of the four-fold Earth.
And so, today is the Feast of the Jana, Madria Sage. On this, her feast day, time may be spent in quiet prayer, maybe a Janae mantra rosary or contemplation in Her honor. Lady Sage may also be celebrated with the Liturgy (priestesses) or the Rite of Sacrifice (devotees), which may also be celebrated this coming Sunday.
Everyone celebrates the feast days of the Janati differently. Some offer flowers and incense, feast foods and drink. Others incorporate some of Their correspondences into the day in the way they decorate, in the foods they choose or in the colors they wear. Others might incorporate special crafts or rituals, but usually these are reserved for our High Holy Days.
So for Madria Sage’s feast day, some devotees might wear the color yellow in Her honor. They might use a yellow tablecloth and place vases of yellow flowers on the home altar or shrine and around the hestia (sacred blessed home).
They might burn the incenses that are sacred to her and decorate with images of owls and other items symbolic of Air such as feathers and bells.
“Metis (Meh-tis) is a Greek goddess who is the personification of wisdom. Her name means “prudent counsel,”
and it was said that Metis knew more than all the gods. Some sources say Metis was the same as Medusa, who
is an ancient archetype of feminine wisdom.
I look deeply within myself to find or receive
prudent counsel in all my affairs.
Goddesses for Every Day: Exploring the Wisdom and Power of the Divine Feminine around the World by Julie Loar, New World Library, 2010
Athene, Athena (as Wisdom)
“According to the Pelasgians (prehistoric peoples inhabiting Mediterranean lands), Athene was born beside the
lake or river Triton, and nurtured by three nymphs. The cult of Athene went back to the Cretan civilization, which
predated that of classical Greece by about 1,500 years. Athens was inhabited even before the Bronze Age
(2000-1000 B.C.). Capital of modern Greece situated in Attica. It was named after the goddess Athene.
Zeus had swallowed his consort, Metis, on learning that she would soon bear a child who would rule the gods.
Metis was renowned for her wisdom. The myth may be a way of saying that when Zeus came to power he
absorbed wisdom (Metis), and from this wisdom came the knowledge from which the arts (Athene) developed.
Athene appears in innumerable myths, but none better displays her unique intellectual qualities than her role in
the Odyssey as the constant friend and adviser of the clever and imaginative Odysseus.”
Greek and Roman Mythology A to Z by Kathleen N. Daly, Marian Rengel
“She would also come to be known as the goddess of wisdom as philosophy became applied to cult in the later fifth century. She remained the patroness of weaving especially and other crafts (Athena Ergane) and the more
disciplined side of war, where she led the battle (Athena Promachos). She is attended by an owl. In classical myth she never had a consort or lover, and thus was often known as Athena Parthenos (“Athena the virgin”), hence her most famous temple, the Parthenon, on the Acropolis in Athens.” https://www.greekmythology.com/pictures/Olympians/Athena/14944/athena
“Sophia (soh-fee-ah or soh-fi-ah) means “wisdom” in Greek, and to the Gnostics of two millennia ago, Sophia was the Holy Spirit and the third person of the Trinity. She is considered by the Gnostics to be the creator of the physical universe. Certain Gnostic texts call the Holy Spirit “God the Mother”.
Incline your ear to Wisdom, and
apply your heart to Understanding.
Bible, Proverbs 2:2
Goddesses for Every Day: Exploring the Wisdom and Power of the Divine Feminine around the World by Julie Loar, New World Library, 2010
The name Hokmah comes from an Egyptian goddess called Heq-ma’a, or Hek-ma’at – a goddess of – you guessed it – wisdom and deep mysteries.
Heq-ma’a is originally mentioned in the Egyptian Book of the Dead, a scripture which predates the entire Bible by centuries.
Heq-ma’a’s name loosely translates as “Underworld Mother of Wisdom, Law, and Words of Power.” Heq is translated as “intelligence,” or “knowledge”. From heq we get the word “hex” meaning magic words of power.
Heq-ma’a’s name became Hokmah. And words like Hagia (holy) and hag (wisewoman, holy woman) come from the heq part of her name. She evidently scared the heck out of the church authorities because they demonized her.
The word Hag now has a negative connotation and is associated with witch. One of the oldest Greek Goddesses, Hecate, also gets her name directly from this Egyptian goddess.
The illustration is Sophia as Hokmah, that supposedly masculine sphere on the Tree of Life.
She is obviously female and is adeptly wielding the fires of creation. Have you noticed since she’s been on the screen she’s been looking you in the eye, as if to say, I’m trying to tell you something, he that hath an eye let him see?
Well, her secret message is her name. See how the balls in her hands look like spheres on the Tree of Life? They are.
Wisdom = Sophia
Glory = Shekinah
She’s holding them in the positions of her two names, Wisdom and Glory, Sophia and Shekinah.
We just saw that her Egyptian name means Underworld Mother of Wisdom.
See how she is rooted in the underworld, coming up from a grave?
Volcanic fires also, come-up-from-the-depths.
Earth science has proven volcanoes go hand in hand with planetary formation.
Sophia is said to have created the world.
Hebrew Hokmah, Chockmah, Chokhmah, Khokhmah (hok-mah)
“Her separateness was clear in the eleventh century CE, when the Spanish Arab scholar Ibn Hazm noted she had the powers of a goddess. The earliest creation of YHWH, Hokmah was also his favourite. Hokmah cast her shadow on the primeval waters stilling them. Hokmah gave consciousness to humankind. By the time of Hellenistic Judaism (first century BCE), Hokmah appeared as a figure in her own right. She became more and more clearly personified, even splitting into positive (“wisdom”) and negative (“folly”) aspects.”
Encyclopedia of Goddesses and Heroines by Patricia Monaghan, PhD, New World Library, 2014
The “wisdom” of Chokhmah also implies the ability to look deeply at some aspect of reality and abstract its conceptual essence till one succeeds in uncovering its underlying axiomatic truth. These seeds of truth can then be conveyed to the companion power of Binah for the sake of intellectual analysis and development.
Chokhmah is the primary (“beginning”) force in the creative process, Creativity, as it is said: “You have made them all with Chokhmah.” (Psalms 104:24) The first word of the Torah in Genesis, Breishit means “In the beginning (God created the heavens and the earth)”, is translated (Targum Yonatan) as “With Chokhmah (God created…).
The word Chokhmah itself may be broken into two words — koach (“potential”) and ma (“what is”). Thus,
Chokhmah means “the potential of what is”, or, “the potential to be.”
In the soul, Chokhmah is associated with the power of intuitive insight.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chokhmah_(Kabbalah)
Saraswati (Saara-swa-ti) (as Learning/Wisdom)
“It is believed that goddess Saraswati endows human beings with the powers of speech, wisdom and learning.
She has four hands representing four aspects of human personality in learning: mind, intellect, alertness and ego.
In visual representations, she has sacred scriptures in one hand and a lotus–the symbol of true knowledge–in the opposite hand.
Learned and the erudite individuals attach great importance to the worship of goddess Saraswati as a representation of knowledge and wisdom. They believe that only Saraswati can grant them moksha– the final liberation of the soul.” https://www.thoughtco.com/saraswati-goddess-of-knowledge-and-arts-1770370
Sapientia (sah-pee-ehn-tee-ah), whose name means “feminine wisdom” in Latin, is the archetype of wisdom.
Sapientia has been termed the “goddess of the Bible” by some scholars, indicating the presence of the Divine Feminine in monotheism. She was ackowledged up until medieval times but has been forgotten with the passage of time. In fact, she thrived as a hidden goddess of philosophical inquiry between the fifth and fifteenth centuries at a time when the sacred feminine was considered heresy.
Mystics spoke of her as dwelling in the heart of God and, in some cases, saw her as bringing all creation into being. She embododied the World Soul, or the collective of humanity, and the mystical union with the Divine sought by sages and spiritual pilgrims.”
Goddesses for Every Day: Exploring the Wisdom and Power of the Divine Feminine around the World by Julie Loar, New World Library, 2010
A 5th century beautiful series of antiphons are still chanted as part of Advent liturgy, including:
O Sapientia, quae ex ore Altissimi prodiisti, attingens a fine usque ad finem fortiter, suaviterque disponens omnia: veni ad docendum nos viam prudentiae.
“O Wisdom, who came from the mouth of the Most High,
reaching from end to end and ordering all things mightily and sweetly,
Come, and teach us the way of prudence.
Video: “Antiphon: o Sapientia” Latin lyrics, Gregorian chant by Capella Gregoriana https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ngcQDQfhlA
Foods for the feast meal might tend to be airy and light and well, yellow such as yellow vegetables and jello salads. Light and airy (for the Element of Air over which She rules) foods and beverages such as angel food cake, salads, champagne, white wine or white grape juice, light soups, rice, white beans, apples, pears might be an important part of the feast. All these ideas make the feast meal festive and fun.
Though our days can be busy and hectic, it’s nice to take a moment, perhaps in the morning, to reflect about which of Her Virtues we wish to emulate and strengthen within ourselves on Her feast day and Her weekly day
Stelladi / Star day / Wednesday.
Sometimes, I choose a Virtue that I know I’m going to need that day. I call on Her help with the Virtue of Wisdom whenever I must make an important decision about the Janite Tradition or when writing articles or counseling someone in need.
I am slowly learning to pay closer attention to my intuition. For example, so often, as I was leaving the house, I would see something and my inner voice was telling me I should take it with me, but my logical side would dismiss it as not being necessary. And, nine times out of ten, it ended up that I needed the item.
When I started my new job, I prayed for the Virtue of Intelligence to see me through. This is helpful when studying for and taking tests or in a zillion other areas. There are two types of Intelligence, the IQ and the EQ.
EQ is Emotional Intelligence and is just as important as the Intelligence Quotient.
There are so many areas where Madria Sage may help us. I love consciously surrounding myself with the Presence of the Janae during my Aurora Rite each morning. I feel like they are with me all day when I do this.
And when I try to connect in a special way with the Jana of the day, I find I come to experience Them and know Them on an intimate, soul level.
O, Madria Sage, we thank You for this day and for all Your blessings and benefits. Be with us.
We all feel it. We all know what it’s like to belong to a religion that is virtually unknown and unrecognized. It’s a lonely place to be, that is for sure. Lonely and not so lonely, because we have each other; we have the Janati surrounding us, always, and we have Dea, Our Divine Mother. We are never alone.
Some people poke fun at ‘online religious communities’. Our religion began on-the-ground, in England, in the 1970’s. Ours is but one latter expression of it.
Many religions began as a small, relatively unknown band or group of people who shared certain beliefs. Perhaps they started out being called by G-d Who spoke to their prophet through a fiery bush or maybe the Son of the Father incarnated to dwell amongst them. Other religions may have begun with an charismatic prophet who attained enlightenment under a Bodhi tree or from sacred texts older than historical time. One way or another, through the preaching of prophets, the performance of miracles, sacred writings or through just plain word of mouth, these religions all grew over the years, the decades, the centuries. Some were controlled and promulgated by governments, others were not. They were all fostered and subsequently flourished on the ground, in the material world not by ‘ instant mass media’ in cyber space.
The Deanic Faith began with a group of highly educated Oxford women who came to understand that we have a Divine Mother God. These scholars were quick to point out that She is not a goddess, a superhuman, semi-divine or angelic being but She is God, Herself. Supreme Being. Supreme Being is the same way that same way that Jews and Christians understand the Father to be God and so we understand Dea to be God in the same way that Jews and Christians understand the Father to be God. Supreme Being.
These women further intuited that Dea is God in Her Own Right. She is complete within Herself. And they discovered that the religion of the Divine Mother is the oldest religion in the world.
The only religion still in existence who never forgot their Mother; who never allowed their Living Stream to dry up, is Hinduism, especially in the Shakti denomination. Other religions demoted Her.
It is hard to over-estimate the brilliance of this thinking which took place an half a century before our own day when the Holy Spirit, the Divine Sophia and the Shekinah are coming to be recognized as part of the Godhead in Their Own Right.
These women came up with a perfect system of worship for Her, for Dea Madria, Our Mother God. It was to be a very Feminine system of worship, the sum of which exists in perfect harmony with its parts. And, the gift of the scriptures, though perhaps interpreted in slightly different ways, has proven to be foundational to the over-all inner strength and spirit of the Faith.
They gave us the Five Sacred Symbols, the Five Mysteries, the perfect Five Seasons,the Feminine 28 day calendar, the understanding of the Janati and so much more. And though these things may be little understood by those not of our Faith, they are our greatest treasures. They are our way of understanding, honoring and worshiping the Divine Feminine in this realm. They are our mindset and our heartset.
The women from Oxford shared similar beliefs. They spread the Faith through magazines and printed publications. They formed small communities.
Today, we of the greater Deanic religion share similar beliefs. In today’s world, the internet is the fastest way to ‘spread the word’, so to speak and it also connects believers from diverse parts of the world who would otherwise never come to know of each other.
This relatively obscure religion is growing, growing all the time. I see it with my own eyes. I believe it has a future because so many want to worship the Divine Mother, but they don’t know how.
Even those mainstream denominations who are coming to believe in Holy Sophia or the Feminine Holy Spirit or Holy Sophia, these churches might have some Divine Feminine hymns; they might have some Sophian prayers, but they don’t have an outright worship of Dea. They have yet to understand Her as being God in Her Own Right. We do. We are so fortunate.
I know it’s hard when we don’t know how to respond to people when they ask us about our religion/spirituality. It’s hard because we are unable to respond with something that is immediately identifiable like Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist or Pagan. We can’t even say that we are of a ‘goddess religion’ because, as previously explained, there is a difference between goddess and God. I believe that one day, the term Deanic will be identifiable, but right now, it is not.
After we are asked about our religious affiliation, the thought that goes through our heads is, ok, they’ve never heard of Deanism so how on Earth am I going to put this in a nutshell? I can’t just say I worship Mother God, because mainstream people will either have no idea what I’m talking about, or they will immediately think I’m an heretic or that I’m making it all up. Or, they will assume that I am Wiccan or Pagan, which I am neither.
Next thought: Ok, there would be too much to explain in too little time and so I’m just going to say that I’m (and then name the nearest spirituality to Deanism).
This is a tough situation for us and sometimes can make us feel a bit alienated from the world because our religion is so unique.
We cannot identify as being a part of any of the Abrahamic Faiths, although we model Dea on Sophia/Shekinah.
We cannot identify as being Buddhist or Hindu (although we might be considered a type of Western Shaktism).
We cannot identify as being Wiccan, Heathen or Pagan. Pagans and Heathens are polytheistic, we are monotheastic. Pagans believe in gods that are superhuman. We believe in God that is Supreme Being.
As an aside, this is why Janites are very careful to only use Living Stream ‘goddesses’ as Forms for Dea rather than Pagan goddesses. A Pagan goddess is not Supreme Being and therefore is not a suitable Form for Dea just as Zeus is not a Form of the Father God of Jews and Christians. They are not the same!
Our religion is unique, brilliantly conceived, complex, beautiful and relatively unknown. If we are asked about our Faith, we, as Her devotees, Her priestesses, Her daughters, should be honest. This is hard, even for me because I don’t want to have to give a quick answer, leaving the querent with the wrong impression of our Faith. I want the person to have a correct understanding of our Faith. But, that is over-whelming because no-one’s ever heard of us and there’s too much to tell!!!!!
I’ve been thinking about this a lot, lately. Only a couple of people at my work know that I am a priest (ess) of the Divine Mother. But, as a priestess, I need to be ready to answer for my beliefs, for my calling.
ArchMatrona Georgia has explained the Faith to many and has been very well received. When asked, we should strive to follow her example. We can keep it very simple. I am Deanic. It’s a religion which honors our Divine Mother. And we can leave it at that. If someone is truly interested, they can be referred to our websites and future publications. (We NEED to print up some basic brochures in addition to the prayer book that is still in progress.)
Finally, we should never feel alone. It’s wonderful that we have the internet. It is the fastest way to spread information. It is a modern vehicle of long-distance community. I always have a sense of our sisters and brothers in the Faith. I feel like we are always spiritually together. I think of all of us when I serve the liturgy, pray or write an article. I think of all of us when I am walking down the road or driving to work. We might not live near each other. We might not have on-the-ground communities because we worship in our hestias, but I feel that our spiritual bond and our instant and sometimes daily communications, teachings, posts, our sharing and our caring, though it takes place through the cyber realm, is just as real as if we attended church service together.
Let us remember the words of our liturgy, “Madria Dea, we have come before Your Earthly altar within Ekklesia, in union with the Great Janati Who stand before Your Celestial Altar in Heaven. May we be one in Spirit with all Your children, everywhere who are gathered together in Your Name.
And further: For we know that Ekklesia transcends this world, even as this sacred altar transcends the earthly stuff of which its parts are made. For we know that as we stand before this altar within Ekklesia, we stand at once before Your Celestial Altar, which is both in Heaven and in every place where Your children come together in Your Name. 1)
We are always one in Spirit and one in Ekklesia. We are always bound together in Dea. Always together in Spirit, out of time, out of space, which is more real than the material illusion around us.
This is why Orthodox Christianity and Roman Catholicism teaches that the church, or more specifically, the liturgy is heaven on Earth or the meeting place between Heaven and Earth. This is due to the Power of what takes place during the liturgy. This is why, in most Orthodox and Traditional Catholic churches/chapels, people still dress in their Sunday best for liturgy. This same Power which brings Heaven down to Earth during the liturgy, is the same Power which binds us together as a community in Her Love, Her Spirit and beneath the enfolding shelter of Her Mantle. And we all share in the Daughter’s Soul.
We have so much for which to be grateful with this beautiful Faith. And though it can be hard for us when the mainstream people all around us, even those who aren’t so ‘main-stream’, do not know of our religion let alone understand it; we still have to be those beacons filled with light. We need to pray to Madria Vicka for the courage we need and we need to ask Madria Sofia to guide us in all Wisdom.
We may keep our answers simple and we must use discernment in what we say to whom, but we must not be afraid though our religion is little known by the mainstream. Someday, our religion will be known.
Guiding Light of the faithful soul, fill the deepest caverns of our spirit with the exhilaration of Your love. Send us forth upon the world as torchbearers of Your delight and grant us strength in You and in ourselves that we may value all things, rightly, regardless of the consuming weight of the profane and the frailty of all that is beautiful.
Let us bless the Holy One,
Blessed is She.
Let us thank the Seven Janati of Power.
Thanks be to the Seven Janati.
ArchMadria Candra Sophia
*Our thanks to Madrina Rosalie for her assistance in the proper pronunciation.
The Great Liturgy of Dea, Janite Edition.
Silver Light of the Forests from the Great Liturgy of Dea, Janite Edition.
O, Madria Theia, Jana of Illumination, Joy and Benevolence, be with us.
May the Pure Stream of Your Virtues, flow within me, in this world and in all the worlds to come. Amen.
Note: Our pages have been edited so many times that often, I can not see the glaring errors that are right before my eyes. Many thanks to Sorella Sophia who brought to my attention that the Creed was in the Rite of Sacrifice, twice and that the information on the Janite calendar for Moura was incorrect. These issues have been rectified. I have also restored to the Janite Rite of Sacrifice, this passage: But we will certainly do every word that shall proceed out of our own mouth, to sacrifice to the Queen of Heaven, and to pour out drink offerings to Her, as we and our fathers have done, our kings, and our princes in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: and we were filled with bread, and it was well with us, and we saw no evil. (Jer. 44:17. Douay-Rheims).
In reference to our past article on travel altars, I would like to share some travel altar and Janati mandala photos sent in by ArchMadria Kathi:
Travel Altar, closed:
Travel Altar, open:
Thank you, ArchMadria Kathi! Truly lovely and inspiring!
Moura is a time of the remembrance of the Sacrifice of the Holy Daughter. It is the most profound and holiest time of year because as not only our own religion teaches about the Sacrifice of Holy Daughter, but through the teachings of Gnostic Christianity and Kabbalistic Judaism concerning Sophia/Shekinah, we read how Our Divine Queen descends down through the Realms into high density and low vibration and we learn of Her Divine Shattering. She volunteers to undergo these sufferings in order to be with us, to sustain us and to intimately share in our lives. The Holy Daughter shares with us, Her very Soul, and rescues the Divine Sparks within us by illuminating our way. She remains with us until we are assumed back to the Holy Mother.
Moura is the time of the Spirit as Spirit is the Element of this fifth Sacred Season. It is the Fifth Element. In some Traditions, this fifth element is aether.
A question was recently asked about the origins of our spirit and whether or not our spirits might be in Heaven/Pleroma, while our souls are on Earth as is stated in our scriptures: And, She entered the great Temple of Heaven, where the spirits of Earth’s children were gathered at the Sacrifice, even as their souls were gathered on Earth. Chapter 7, vs 16, The Mythos of the Divine Maid.
The querent further asked if our spirits were eternally created in or out of time and the Pleroma. I answered, in a conversational style, by stating my own personal opinion which does not, in any way, represent the ideas or beliefs of others in the Greater Deanic Faith.
The first thing to remember is that no-one… absolutely no-one on this planet knows, with certainty, how our spirits or souls were created. No-one knows this, not even the greatest spiritual/religious leaders. These are areas that have never been revealed to us by G-d. And so, theologians and philosophers of the past have taught what makes sense to them or perhaps what they intuitively perceived and these teachings have been carried forth down through the ages.
Additionally, from an inter-faith vantage point, no-one can seem to quite agree on what constitutes the difference is between soul and spirit. Different religious and spiritual teachers/Traditions approach this from varying viewpoints.
There are many things that we simply don’t know and any religious leader who is worth their salt, will admit this fact. The Catholic and Russian priests for whom I had the highest respect, were the ones who would tell me that there are things we simply are not able to know because they have not been revealed to us. I think there are reasons why we have this so-called amnesia when we come to Earth. But, that is for a future article.
We don’t even know if our spirits are actually created, or are part of G-d, or are emanations of G-d. There are inter-Faith scriptural supports for each of these possibilities. The Deanic Faith teaches that our spirits were created at the beginning of time and that makes sense to us because we also believe in reincarnation. Christians teach that our spirits were created when we are to be born on this planet because they don’t believe in reincarnation (although there is evidence that Jesus taught it). Both religions teach that our spirits have not always been eternal, because we were created at the beginning. If we were, whether in or out of time, actually created, then we are not eternal, like G-d. But, both Deanism and Christianity teach that our spirits will exist eternally from the moment of creation.
As far as the above quote, And She entered the great temple of heaven, where the spirits of earth’s children were gathered at the sacrifice, even as their souls were gathered on the earth… it was once explained to me that this is an Hindu teaching. The exact scriptural quote was found in the original Madrian liturgy. Janites changed it to: the Janati were gathered at the Sacrifice, even as the Children of Earth were gathered upon the Earth, as we have a different viewpoint. We don’t see our spirits remaining in Heaven while our souls are journeying upon the Earth. We believe that our spirits are here, too. However, there are different ways to understand the teaching.
The only other time I had ever heard of the idea of part of our spirit remaining in Heaven during an incarnation on Earth is when I’ve read books about life between lives (past life regression) where some have said that a portion of our higher selves, i. e., a portion of our spirit remains in the Pleroma while our lower selves incarnate on Earth. While certainly anything is possible and this is one of those areas that has not been divinely revealed to us, this concept is too difficult for a lot of people to grasp; it wrestles too heavily with our perceived reality on a most intimate core level.
Meditation by Alex Grey.
I found this picture on an interesting article regarding reincarnation though this is not a spiritual website: http://www.hangthebankers.com/reincarnation-the-interlife-universal-consciousness-the-holographic-soul/
I have stated many times that I personally believe in the holographic universe theory. And, more and more, physicists are discovering that this theory has merit and that is why the ancients always taught that this place is an illusion. There have been many articles on this, the most recent being: http://www.wired.co.uk/article/our-universe-is-a-hologram
Some physicists are teaching that our perceived reality is similar to a virtual reality video game. Soon, the technology behind virtual reality is going to seem so real that those playing the game will forget their real life, just as we forget our real life in Heaven/Pleroma (think Hymn of the Pearl). To those in the video game, the game world seems real, even though it is an illusion, just as this earth seems real to our senses, even though it is an illusion. Though the ancients taught that our world is an illusion, they did not have the modern technology framework within which to explain it.
And so, if we think of it this way, we incarnate into our avatars in the holographic/virtual reality Game of Life in order to learn our soul lessons and so we are both ‘here’ in the illusion, but we are also in Heaven/the Pleroma, our True Home, but we forget that our Higher Selves are still in our True Home, just as someone who is plugged into a virtual reality game forgets that their body is still in their own living room. Imagine how it will be when this technology is improved!
Decades ago, I read a book long before the personal computer was ever conceived, let alone the internet and virtual reality. The prophetic authoress wrote of a time in the future when there would be those who would become so caught up in the virtual world, that they would forget their real life, they would forget to eat and take care of themselves, they would lose all sense of their true selves and completely identify with their virtual avatar, just as we identify with our earthly bodies. These people would need to be saved from the virtual reality world or they would die. I think this is a great metaphor for our lives, here. We become so consumed with this world; we identify so strongly with our bodies here on Earth, that we forget our way home. That is why we need the Holy Daughter. She shares Her soul with us so that we may have a vehicle with which to enter this world. When we become lost in the illusion, She gathers the Sparks of our Spirits illuminates the Way back Home.
If we agree that the virtual reality motif is a relevant metaphor for our soul-journey, then, we may understand the verse, where the spirits of earth’s children were gathered at the sacrifice, even as their souls were gathered on the earth as is stated in our scriptures. However, we would maintain that we are not just body and soul, we are body, soul and spirit. While we are on Earth, we are a Trinity of Being. It is my belief and that of others, that our souls are the vehicles or the conduit which unites our spirits to our physical bodies here on Earth. I would maintain that our souls are the temples of our spirits as the body is the temple of the soul.
Whereas the origin of our spirits and the exact nature of our souls has never been divinely revealed to us , we should believe whatever makes sense to us or what we are intuitively given to understand.
The idea of including doctrines in a traditionis much misaligned in our era. This is because many denominations made it a serious sin to disbelieve their doctrines. This draconian church law takes away a person’s right to think for themselves. Doctrines are supposed to be a guide. They are meant to be a guide without taking away our God-give right to think for ourselves. While Janites have a doctrine regarding our spirits as found in our Creed, in that our spirits were created at the beginning of time, this is only a guide. Devotees must believe according to their heart intelligence.