Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Key of the Gate of Artemis

Artemis, no stranger to men, though
hardly what one would call loose,
as a child far younger than 9 or 10,
made these 6 demands of Zeus-

-To be always a virgin, unowned by any man

-To be known by many names, unlike the Appolonian

-To be practically clothed, with bow and arrows close at hand

-For 60 daughters of the Deep and 20 Nyads to command

-For no city to be named for her but to always hold high land

-and to quell the pain of childbirth and guide the midwife's hand.

Artemis is the spirit of women
who know they can still be anything.
Artemis is in every girl
to whom the sacred hunt still sings.
Artemis, like Apollo, brings light
and the sight of distant things,
Initiating little girls into
a space now reserved for kings.

-Simon Zealot

The Key of the Gate of Artemis, the Huntress, the Wild Grrl, opens what fear has locked down. Artemis is the girl old enough to know she can be anything; the woman young enough to know the same. Artemis the ancient Mistress of Wild Herb and Wild Mountain and Wild Beast teaches us to overcome fear. To release the power that fear has locked up. To open the gate of Sardis.

As Simon and I worked at the gate, we came to understand that they key to this gate would be a series of motions; a dance, a kata, a yoga. We moved, feeling it in our bodies (mostly in his body), and we came to know it's name, the Dance of Stag and Archer. And as we circled in on it, as Artemis revealed to us her ancient art that prepares the body for the hunt, Simon recognized it as the kin to his own art. The magic of the body can be lost but not destroyed; it can be only so tainted by culture and rhetoric. The movements of the body that unlock fear have to be the same in Lydia as they are in Tibet, because the bodies are the same.  And so, we present to you Artemis Elaphiaia's Dance of Stag and Bow, with antler hands and prancing feet, the Animal Play Qi Gong that is taught by Deer, shown to you below by a true Dr. Strange.

Read the poem aloud, and then work your way through the Frolick.  Try to follow the motions below as best you can, but it's ok if it's not very good.  The man you are watching is a master magician.  Even just watching the video has power, but following along, even if badly, taps you into a very deep and ancient magic.  That being said, do your best.  Breathing deeply and slowly, with the intention of unlocking your hips, releasing toxins from your kidneys, and releasing your fear.  Feel with your body for when the energy can flow through your body like a deer; graceful, spritely, frolicing. When your fear abates, you should feel shift in your body; a series of "pops"  of energy being released.  When this happens, you are ready to begin the hunt, you will know you have passed through the third gate.

Remember that Sardis is the last gate for which a public key is available.  Further keys are available only to players.