To Ride a Swan

To Ride a Swan

Pentecost 114

Prajapati is a supreme god found in the ancient Hindu mythologies.  In the earliest stories, Prajapati exists before anything.  It is Prajapati who causes Brahma, the god of creation to be born.  Tomorrow we will see a convergence of these two deities but for today, Prajapati will, after much meditation, put into action the events that bring about the birth of Brahma.

I will confess that I have never really sat and stared at my stomach except to grimace and then quickly avert my eyes.  Like most women, my stomach is not a body part we like to call attention to and so, we often try to pretend it isn’t there.  The exception to that is when one is pregnant.  You still would prefer it not be so noticeable perhaps but now, that size has purpose, a purpose of creation.

Prajapati meditated and stared at his navel.  During his meditation, legend states that a seed appeared and from that seed, a lotus tree grew.  AS the tree grew, it became enveloped in a great light, a brilliance which spread throughout the cosmos and brought about the birth of the creation god, brahma,  As the light continued to spread, the spirit of Brahma spread and so, Brahma became a part of all creation, the essence of all things and their power.

It was written in the Indian mythologies that one day in the life of Brahma was the same as four thousand, three hundred and twenty million years.  At the end of one day in the life of Brahma, the myths state that a new cycle of creation will begin and the cosmos will again be recreated with new time beginnings and being lived.

Brahma traveled around his creation on the back of a swan.  The swan was said to have magical powers and the ability to distinguish between milk and water when the two were mixed.  Like all mythology, symbolism is prominent in Indian mythology.  The wondrous swan’s ability to tell pure milk from water represented the essence of good and evil and the necessary wisdom mankind needed regarding such.  It is critical whether living in ancient India or in any modern-day city anywhere on the planet to recognize good from evil, what should be kept and what should be tossed.

This would be a really good place to start talking about closets – cleaning and organizing, keeping what is needed and discarding what is outgrown or no longer useful.  A relative of mine is hospitalized, the victim of a automobile accident over the weekend.  Like many families, though, the relation has not brought about a closeness or friendship.  The fact is that while we are both good people, we are also very different people.  I hope and pray that the very belligerent tendencies this relation has will help in the healing of some very serious head injuries.  While I am a pacifist and this person is not, I find myself hoping those tendencies I might have wanted tossed a week ago in them will now become the tool with which a life is regained.

We are all like the milk and water.  We all have those aspects of ourselves which are beneficial at most times but can become detrimental at others.  Literature and sacred texts are full of examples of such.  When famous people become confused about their public persona and their private being, a loss of identity can lead to tragic consequences or misery.

Marketing today is all about “branding” – creating a persona for the public.  These ancient mythologies give us multiple examples of the traps we can fall into when we lose the ability or the vision to see ourselves for what we really are and to understand what image we are projecting to the world.

We need to look into the mirror and see ourselves for what we really are.  We need to live our imperfect lives striving for a perfect identity.  We need to ride a magic swan of beliefs in our living so that the needless and unnecessary or corrupt is dropped, leaving only the good to surround our ride through our lives.


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