Your browser does not support script
TWV Presents...



Articles/Essays From Pagans

[Show all]


Views: 20,384,803


November 15th. 2017 ...

Men and the Goddess

Witch?

Pirates and Witches

Pagan Artist Trading Cards


October 14th. 2017 ...

A Little Magickal History

An Open Fire: Healing from Within


September 30th. 2017 ...

Transitioning


August 31st. 2017 ...

The White Goddess: A Seminal Work in the Neo-Wiccan Movement.

Gudrun of the Victory Gods

The Goddess Asherah


July 31st. 2017 ...

Cernunnos: The Darkest Wood in the Moon's Light

Truth and Lies: Finding Wicca

Sin Eaters and Dream Walkers


July 2nd. 2017 ...

Back to Basics Witchcraft: Magical Creativity for Small Living Spaces

On Preconceived Pagan/Wiccan Political Affiliations

A Distant Thunder: Should You Care?

On Cursing: Politics and Ethos

Ares and Athena


July 1st. 2017 ...

Elements of Magic


June 1st. 2017 ...

The Sacred Ego in Mediterranean Magical Traditions

Herbal Astrology

La Santa Muerte... The Stigma and the Strength

The Lady on the Stairs

Nahualli: Traditional Aztec Witchcraft and Totems


April 30th. 2017 ...

Nazis Made Us Change Our Name

Why the Faeries?

The Wheel of the Year in Our Daily Lives

Tarot Talk: the Knight of Pentacles


March 30th. 2017 ...

Magic in Daily Life

The East and West of Wiccan Magick

Tarot Talk: the Ace of Swords


March 3rd. 2017 ...

Finding Balance: Discipline Wedded to Devotion


February 10th. 2017 ...

Understanding the Unseen

Kitchen Magic and Memories


January 10th. 2017 ...

The Gray of 'Tween

Becoming a Sacred Dancer

Little Dog, Big Love


December 9th. 2016 ...

A Child's First Yule


November 10th. 2016 ...

What Exactly Is Witchcraft?

A Witch in the Bible Belt: Questions are Opportunities

On Death and Passing: Compassion Burnout in Healers and Shamans

What I Get from Cooking (And How it’s Part of My Path)


October 10th. 2016 ...

Witchcraft from the Outside


September 11th. 2016 ...

Wild Mountain Woman: Landscape Goddess

How Did I Get Here? (My Pagan Journey)


September 3rd. 2016 ...

Rethinking Heaven: What Happens When We Die?

What is Happening in My Psychic Reading?

Nature’s Reward


August 12th. 2016 ...

When Reality Rattles your Idea of the Perfect Witch

Hungarian Belief in Fairies

Designing a Pagan Last Will and Testament

Past Midnight


July 13th. 2016 ...

What Every Pagan Should Know About Curses

Magic With A Flick of my Finger

An Open Mind and Heart

Finding and Caring for Your Frame Drum


June 13th. 2016 ...

Pollyanna Propaganda: The Distressing Trend of Victim-Blaming in Spirituality

Living a Magickal Life with Fibromyalgia

My Father, My First God

Life is Awesome... and the Flu


May 15th. 2016 ...

Wiccan Spirituality

Faery Guided Journey

How to Bond with the Elements through Magick

Magical Household Cleaning

Working with the Elements


April 2nd. 2016 ...

Becoming Wiccan: What I Never Expected

The Evolution of Thought Forms

The Fear of Witchcraft

Rebirth By Fire: A Love Letter to Mama Maui and Lady Pele

Magic in Sentences

Blowing Bubbles with the Goddess


March 28th. 2016 ...

Revisiting The Spiral

Still Practicing

Spring Has Sprung!


January 22nd. 2016 ...

Coming Out of the Broom Closet

Energy and Karma

Community and Perception


December 20th. 2015 ...

Magia y Wicca


October 24th. 2015 ...

The Dream Eater--A Practical Use of Summoning Talismans

Feeling the Pulse of Autumn


NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.










Article Specs

Article ID: 8776

VoxAcct: 203884

Section: words

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 4,783

Times Read: 4,800

Gaia Eros: Evolution of the Gaian Mythos - PART II

Author: Oberon Zell-Ravenheart
Posted: October 17th. 2004
Times Viewed: 4,800

Gaia and Eros:

In his Theogony, Hesiod presents Eros as a primal force of love, born of Chaos along with Gaia. Hovering above her, he rains his arrows down upon her barren form, and fertilizes her to bring forth all life.

Consider the formation of the solar system, as we presently understand it. Visualize the swirling cloud of dust and cosmic debris, with eddies coalescing into planets, moons, etc, each in their mathematically-determined orbits. Now visualize the development of an ovary, with ova forming in their respective chambers. And overlay these concepts, and imagine stellar systems as cosmic ovaries, with planets and moons as eggs waiting to be fertilized...

Then visualize the scene of fertilization: all those little sperm, with their long tails, diving at that ovum, trying to be the first one through... Until one finally makes it, and a shock wave transforms the ovum into a zygote - and all those other sperm are now out of the running. And overlay upon that image a view of the early Earth (specifically, 570 million years ago...) as the ovum, and a plethora of long-tailed comets plunging into it as the fertilizing sperm...

Unlike sperm, which are formed continually by the millions, and have brief lifespans, ova are formed early on, and only a finite number are ever produced, to be released periodically throughout a woman's fertile life. The ova with its genetic material waits patiently during all that time - perhaps decades - for that union with a sperm before beginning the explosive process of division and multiplication of embryological development.

Once fertilization occurs, the process of differentiation and development as a multicellular organism proceeds rapidly, forming all the various tissues, organs, systems, et cetera of the body within just a few weeks. The last components to form (at around forty days in a human fetus) are the ova for the next generation...

Prokaryotic cells (without nuclei) seem to have appeared on the Earth as soon as things cooled down enough to allow liquid water to exist (at least 3.7 billion years ago) . And for over two billion years, that remained the status of all life on Earth. Nucleated eukaryotic cells (into which various prokaryotes were assimilated - such as mitochondria, chloroplasts, and most importantly, chromosomes) seem to have appeared about 1.4 billion years ago. Despite decades of research into "The Origins of Life, " no one seems to have been able to figure out just how these came into being - or duplicate any such process in the laboratory.

I think there is a significant analogy here between the microcosm and the macrocosm, which I have not previously seen noted, and which, I believe, offers an explanation of why the development of life on Earth proceeded in this manner - with billions of years seemingly stuck in a succession of two unicellular "holding patterns" before suddenly "exploding" into multicellular complexity.

For those first three billion years, the Earth was an unfertilized ovum - rich with its own genetic material, but awaiting (as Hesiod's Theogony says) "the arrows of Eros" - the "sperm" in the form of icy comets carrying another genetic component formed not on planetary bodies, but in clouds of cosmic dust.

The point at which that fertilization occurred is at the boundary between the Precambrian and the Cambrian, initiating what we call "The Cambrian Explosion" 570 million years ago. (Interestingly, there seems to have been a previous occurrence of fertilization maybe 100 million years earlier, named for the most famous outcrop at Ediacara in Australia; but this Ediacarian "proto-embryo" was apparently "aborted, " leaving no descendant issue. Perhaps the Cambrian "embryo" simply absorbed or devoured the Ediacarian one - as often happens in the womb, where polar bodies, et cetera form from an ovum, but never develop into full embryos.)

The Homeobox genes - especially the HOX Cluster - which are found in all multicellular creatures, but have no protozoan antecedents, provide a key component of this concept, as they indicate that a basic genetic template or blueprint for the future development of all living organisms has been here from the beginning of the Cambrian Explosion - but not before. And it is from that point that Gaea's true evolution began.

Sentience:

The single most characteristic aspect of any living organism is a discrete awareness, or sentience, through which it seeks food, avoids discomfort, pursues a reproductive strategy, and makes innumerable choices between this and that in the course of its life. Such sentience pervades every living creature - from a single-celled amoeba to a great sperm whale. And it is such sentience that distinguishes an entity from an object.

True sentience may be distinguished from the type of so-called "artificial intelligence" attributed to, say, computer programs, by its possession of the following attributes: Agenda, Interest, Curiosity and Caring. The lowliest bug has its own little idiosyncratic agenda. It investigates its world with intense interest and curiosity, and it makes continual choices based upon its preferences. And most importantly, things matter to it; it cares. It cares whether it lives or dies, whether it eats or goes hungry, and whether it reproduces. It hides from predators and defends itself when attacked. It actively hunts for food and mates by seeking and following interesting clues. And if it's a mother, very likely it protects its young. And this sentience drives the very heart of evolution.

The more complex the organism, the more attention seems to be focused on organs of perception and sentience. Nineteenth Century paleontologist Othniel Marsh (1831-1899) articulated this observation in the form of Marsh's Law: "Any evolutionary line of warm-blooded animals exhibits over time a steady increase of relative brain size" - and therefore of consciousness. If we are willing to posit Gaia as a single vast planetary organism, we cannot avoid the acknowledgment that such a complex organism must perforce also possess a concomitant global awareness, sentience, indeed - consciousness.

If we accept the unity of all Earthly life as a single vast superorganism, the assumption of a planetary sentience is as inevitable as the recognition of sentience among ourselves and other living creatures. The intrinsic spirituality found among all peoples, no matter how remote or isolated, is rooted in an apprehension of a coexistent and pervasive realm of Spirit. This universal animism, pantheism and religious theology among all human cultures supports the thesis of sentience existing at scales beyond that of the human individual, just as our individual consciousness operates at a vaster scale than that of our component neurons.

But this is the arena where consideration of the Gaia Thesis in the scientific community has come up against a wall. The Great Divide between the so-called "Physical Sciences" and metaphysics that was created at the establishment of the Scientific Academy in the 1660s mandates that any consideration of sentience in Nature is taboo. Even in the realm of human consciousness, the field of Psychology has been strongly affected by Behaviorism, which refuses to acknowledge even the sentience of the scientists themselves!

Thus, in order to receive any serious consideration and scientific acceptance of his "Gaia Hypothesis, " it was necessary for Lovelock to downplay and even disregard any implications that his "Gaia" may have any sort of collective sentience or intelligence. This crucial omission of what is, after all, ultimately the most relevant aspect of the entire thesis, was not necessarily of Lovelock's own choosing. In personal correspondence with me, he made reference to Teilhard de Chardin, the great Jesuit paleontologist who embraced a similar view from a Christian perspective. Now for the first time we have a chance to be part of a growing "New Nature Spirituality:" an insightful Gaian sensibility recombining Spirit, science, feeling and action. And we have books like this one to help illustrate, as Wolf puts it, "the connection, the awakening, the way back home."

The Awakening:

We stand on the threshold of a new Age. After half a billion years of evolution, we have arrived at this magical moment. Gaia floats mighty yet vulnerable amidst the starry heavens. She calls to us, and touches our human hearts, and we know we are part of a self-aware mind capable of contemplating its own existence. And now, having seen Herself through our satellite eyes, She is awakening to consciousness.

The Wheel is turning again, and the Goddess is reemerging. As in the ancient myths, Persephone is returning from the Underworld, to bask in the sunlight of a new dawn. She is beginning to awaken; Her eyelids are fluttering. In Her twilight sleep, Her dreams are coming to life in us, and many, many of us are spontaneously hearing Her call in our hearts. Just as the billions of neurons in our brains link up synergistically, just so shall we participate in the Awakening of Gaea Herself - and our full Apotheasis.

These are dark and troubled times. We who are attuned to the cycles of Nature and the rhythms of the Earth often feel overwhelmed by the escalating environmental crises. The atmosphere's ozone layer is compromised; global warming is dramatically changing our climate; and the destruction of the rainforests and the pollution of the seas are causing worldwide droughts. The challenges we face are so vast and the politics of greed and corruption so complex that it will truly take a miracle to transform such global destruction.

But miracles are what our magick is all about. Our hope and intention is that books like Gaia Eros will inspire others to join in this heroic mission of Earth Ministry, and that a new generation will feel the calling, and take up this path of service to all life, as Champions of Gaia. Thus will our myths and magick manifest in reality in our daily lives, improving and blessing the world.

So Mote It Be!

Oberon Zell-Ravenheart




ABOUT...

Oberon Zell-Ravenheart


Location: Santa Cruz, California

Bio: Oberon Zell-Ravenheart is a founder of the Church of All Worlds, the first legally recognized NeoPagan church in the U.S., past publisher of the acclaimed magazine Green Egg, and author of Grimoire For The Apprentice Wizard (New Page, 2004) . His sculptured mythic art is known far and wide, and an edited version of this essay make up the Prologue to the book Gaia Eros (New Page, 2004) by Jesse Wolf Hardin.




Other Articles: Oberon Zell-Ravenheart has posted 6 additional articles- View them?

Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE




Email Oberon Zell-Ravenheart... (No, I have NOT opted to receive Pagan Invites! Please do NOT send me anonymous invites to groups, sales and events.)

To send a private message to Oberon Zell-Ravenheart ...



Pagan Essays
1996-2017





Pagan Web
8,000 Links





Pagan Groups
Local Covens etc.





Pagan/Witch
80,000 Profiles














Home - TWV Logos - Email US - Privacy
News and Information

Chapters: Pagan/Heathen Basics - Pagan BOOKS - Traditions, Paths & Religions - Popular Pagan Holidays - TV & Movies - Cats of the Craft - Festival Reviews - Festival Tips - White Pages (Resources) - Issues/Concerns - West Memphis 3 - Witch Hunts - Pagan Protection Tips - Healing Planet Earth

Your Voices: Adult Essays - Young Pagan Essays - Pagan Perspectives (On Hold) - WitchWars: Fire in the Craft - Gay Pagan - Pagan Parenting - Military - Pagan Passages

Pagan Music: Pagan Musicians - Bardic Circle at WitchVox - Free Music from TWV

Vox Central: About TWV - Wren: Words, Wrants and Wramblings - Guest Rants - Past Surveys - A Quest for Unity

Weekly Updates: Click HERE for an index of our weekly updates for the past 6 years

W.O.T.W. - World-Wide Networking

Your Town: A Link to YOUR Area Page (The largest listing of Witches, Pagans, Heathens and Wiccans on the Planet)

VoxLinks: The Pagan Web: 8,000 Listings

Your Witchvox Account: Log in Now - Create New Account - Request New Password - Log in Problems

Personal Listings: Pagan Clergy in Your Town - Adult Pagans - Young Pagans - Military Pagans

Events: Circles, Gatherings, Workshops & Festivals

Covens/Groups/Orgs: Local Groups Main Page

Other LOCAL Resources: Local Shops - Regional Sites - Local Notices - Global/National Notices - Local Skills & Services - Local Egroups - Political Freedom Fighters

Pagan Shopping: Online Shops Index - Original Crafters Sites - Auction Sites - Pagan Wholesalers - Pagan Local Shops



Web Site Content (including: text - graphics - html - look & feel)
Copyright 1997-2017 The Witches' Voice Inc. All rights reserved
Note: Authors & Artists retain the copyright for their work(s) on this website.
Unauthorized reproduction without prior permission is a violation of copyright laws.

Website structure, evolution and php coding by Fritz Jung on a Macintosh G5.

Any and all personal political opinions expressed in the public listing sections (including, but not restricted to, personals, events, groups, shops, Wren’s Nest, etc.) are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of The Witches’ Voice, Inc. TWV is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization.

Sponsorship: Visit the Witches' Voice Sponsor Page for info on how you
can help support this Community Resource. Donations ARE Tax Deductible.
The Witches' Voice carries a 501(c)(3) certificate and a Federal Tax ID.

Mail Us: The Witches' Voice Inc., P.O. Box 341018, Tampa, Florida 33694-1018 U.S.A.
Witches, Pagans
of The World




Search Articles
1996-2017










 Current Topic
 Editorial Guide


NOTE: The essay on this page contains the writings and opinions of the listed author(s) and is not necessarily shared or endorsed by the Witches' Voice inc.

The Witches' Voice does not verify or attest to the historical accuracy contained in the content of this essay.

All WitchVox essays contain a valid email address, feel free to send your comments, thoughts or concerns directly to the listed author(s).