Nine Deadly Sins with Coffee, part 42 – The Huntress
“Animals…” I said, just letting it hang in the air.
“Animals?” John replied, playing his favourite ‘dead bat’.
Just at that moment, Rose brought my coffee. Getting to our coffee shop after him was becoming annoying–particularly as I made every effort not to. Wherever this myth led, it was clearly important to him that I ‘got it’. He had arranged everything to control the quest; and something inside me was rebelling…
“Whatever it is, it’s all about animals…” I said, sure that the word ‘animals’ was the key to unravelling my tangled, but not muddled, thoughts.
I had wrestled and wrestled with this one–the inner meaning of the doe in the sign of Cancer; the doe that three people claimed but… suddenly the review of my own hunt triggered a further thought…
“Hunting… the doe… there was only one hunter!” I blurted out.
“Heracles..” John sipped his coffee, smiling and nodding, “You!” Then he held up his cup so that it obscured part of the one eye he kept open, looking at me with half an eyeball.
“Half an eyeball…” I muttered, disgusted, and becoming sarcastic in my frustration. “Shouldn’t take it out on you, but its still half a sodding eyeball…”
John chuckled. “Took Heracles a while,” he said, calmly, “In fact, it took him a whole cycle of the zodiac…”
“And all the time Diana and Artemis tried to frustrate him, hiding the Doe in the eternal forests,” I added, remembering the details of the myth, again.
“And did the Sun god, Apollo, intervene?” he asked. It was a carefully phrased question. I wanted to say ‘yes’ but then thought better of it, because Apollo hadn’t really – not till the end.
“Not really…” I sipped my own coffee, watching the hunter that was John gaze at me over the top of his own cup. “It was only when he took the Doe, injured, into the Sun temple, that Apollo intervened, as though…” I had slipped into that state of revelation, again.
“As though…?” asked John, very quietly.
“As though… the Doe were a child of the temple that had to be brought back to where it began,” And then I added, “And Apollo healed it so that it was, apart from being captured, unchanged from how it had started – whole, again!”
“And the purpose of all that would be?”
I could feel the ‘flow’ of the moment–that surge of energy as something new broke into my consciousness.
“To free it from the forces of the Moon–symbolically, the organic forces of evolution, which had done their work.” I felt the surge continue, even as he asked me the next question, which I knew would follow.
“And what of Diana, the huntress of the Sun? Why would a daughter of Apollo have to be denied in her claim to the Doe?”
I was ready. “Because Apollo, being the male and Kingly figure, would be the originator, in a spiritual sense the Father, who generated the Doe to be the carrier of something vital for those…” I searched for the word. The male and female aspects of gender did not fit, easily, into modern thinking; but I could see their original intent. “…below.”
That was it… something had been ‘given’ to those below, those evolving from a divine birth–Apollo’s offspring, and Heracles had been the only one, apart from Diana’s permitted and brief glimpse, to be allowed into the temple of the Sun. But Diana was a principle and not a human. The folded paper creature and the boat from our last Monday’s coffee meeting had represented that climb of evolution… So, the divine gift had to be at the heart of what it was to be human; and yet this single thing, this Doe, existed at different levels in all of us, male and female, equally.
“The Doe is our aliveness, then?” I asked it, knowing that I was close, but not sure that it was exactly right.
“And what’s the real test of something alive?” John asked, embracing me with his eyes.
“We feel, we think, we react to the world, we create, we suffer, we have joy…” I was streaming out all that I could think of about what it was to be human.
“All of those, yes,” he said. “And so you have to find a single attribute that covers the lowest forms of life right up the highest; something possessed by the simplest single-celled life-form, but which evolves with it, expands with it, to become human and then, as though reaching its maturity in the first two phases of its existence, as the Doe did, teases with its new beauty and dances away, to create a chase, a quest…” My skin crazed with goose bumps as he said the closing word very softly, “Creating a hunt that takes us all beyond being human.”
Finishing his coffee, he reached into his black bag and took out three small envelopes. Then he left, kissing me briefly on the top of the head, as he departed.
For a while, I stared at the white rectangles on the table. I would open them on the train… I would descend into my mundane but essential world of London to fight for my living, as animals must do; but, I thought, holding up the three envelopes, I would make sure I looked up at the stars a lot this week…
But, then, I didn’t do that… In my impatience, I ripped open the envelopes and shook out three pieces of paper. They were blank on the sides that emerged. With that sinking feeling I turned them all over… blank on the other sides, too.
Cursing him, I left the cafe, but, as I walked, I began to smile. The part-rage had marked a transition from passive to active. He was no longer going to spoon-feed me the answers. I knew I would have to work for it from now on.
The huntress stretched her claws and looked up at the pale winter sun. She was hungry…
Nine Deadly Sins with Coffee is usually published on Thursdays.
All images and text ©International copyright, The Silent Eye School of Consciousness, 2015.