In ancient Persia Anahita was considered the goddess of all water upon the Earth, and the source of the Cosmic Ocean. She rides a chariot of four horses, rain, wind, cloud, and sleet. Her symbol is the eight rayed star. She was regarded as the source of all life. The Goddess of fertility, abundance, marriage, motherhood, love, birth, and victory. Ancient Kings would be crowned by their Queens in Anahita’s temples, in order to gain her support and protection. In texts about ancient temples in the Persian region there are references to Goddess Anahita’s union with Mithra the Sun God, the union of fire and water.
The Conference of the Birds is a poem written in 1177 by Attar of Nishapur, it is a poem about the journey that the birds makes through seven valleys. The journey symbolises the stages any individual must pass, to realise the true nature of the Divine.
I have based this piece of intuitive writing on a concert that I was blessed enough to attend on the 11.10.15 called The Seven Cities of Love and this piece transpired after the concert.
The stage is set, the candles burning, the lights dim and the theatre is hushed quiet as the concert begins. The artist begins with the words of the poem and the air is filled with anticipation, as the musician takes his place and begins to play. Each pluck of his string sends a calling to the parts within that have remained dormant for many eons, my body is responding to the awakening of ancient longing that I had long since forgotten. As he sings an ethereal melody it catapults me into a different dimension of time and space. I am suspended within the realms of seen and unseen, bewildered yet longing to be drawn into the unknown. The dancer appears before me dancing, each movement, each sway calls to me and I am transfixed, enchanted. From the Soul of the dancer in her whirling to the rhythm of the music, She appears before me, in full form tall and celestial. She walks towards me Her eyes transfixed as She takes my hand and pulls me off my seat.
‘Come, let me take you to places you have yet to experience.’
The stage and the artists become united in the melody and dance, somehow there is no separation yet I am between worlds where time has no power or meaning.
I look at Her in awe as we ride in her Chariot of four horses. She is wearing a mantle covering her form which dazzles in gold light, she is adorned by a crown that is held together by the cosmic stars. Her bronze hair flows as we ride through the dimensions of time and space. She turns to look at me with blazing eyes of crystal blue and smiles;
‘You are dazzled to see me Dear Daughter, my Priestess, are you yet still trying to remember me your Mother. It is I Anahita you are my daughter and you lie in the slumber to your true essence. I have come to awaken you form this slumber, and to remind you of your birth right and sovereignty. For I am the queen of Heaven and Earth and you are My Daughter.’
With these words I see beside us two winged lions moving in unison with the chariot, and flying above us is a dove. We come to a standstill and the door of the chariot opens as if aided by some unseen force. She steps out before me and then holds out Her hand to aid me to step down. As we walk we are led by a peacock gliding before us, the deep colours of its magnificent form glowing in the light of the Moon.
‘Come my beauty.’ She beckons to me.
‘I will be taking you through the seven Cities of Love it is the journey of the Simorgh’ (Phoenix)
I looked at her dumbfounded. She glances at me and bursts into laughter, Her silvery tones echoed into the darkness.
‘I can see your surprise, but come this is why I have called you here, for you are ready to understand the depths of Love and to embody the truth of who you are.’
With these words the Heavens opened up I am in between two worlds I am immersed in the melody as the show continues on the stage, yet I can hear each tune as if embedding itself into my Soul. The dance, the vibration as the movements stirred a deep longing inside, that I could not comprehend. Yet my body was responding to some ancient depth. Anahita points Her hand towards me and states;
‘This is the City of Being in Love’
With Her statement I was spellbound, in the feeling of deep Love, as if consumed and held within the heart of hearts. Cocooned wrapped up in this space that was suspended, I fall to my knees for I am so consumed by this unconditional love, that I weep. I feel pathways open up inside my heart that were closed by hurt and pain. Each wave of Love sends me into a spasm of opening, I lift myself like a rose facing towards the Sun, opening its delicate petals, as if in ecstasy with the presence of the moment, embraced by the warmth of its rays.
As I am enraptured in this blissful feeling of elation, She comes towards me and lifts me to meet Her eyes. I am still intoxicated with pure Love, unable to even hold myself up. She whispers in my ear;
‘This is the City of the Selfless.’
As she whispers these words I completely let go of all that has restrained me, like the flower that blooms knowing that with its blossom it will perish, yet this does not deter it. I let go of fear, I let go of all self-consciousness, or care that by my opening myself I may completely destroy every part of me. This time I stand tall and open my arms to receive fully all that I am, with no hesitation or reluctance. The dancer dances around me and I am invisible to her as she moves around me. Yet each movement of her dance sends a wave of energy through me, as if uploading some ancient code. As this happens Anahita declares;
‘This is the City of Knowledge.’
As She states this the codes are moving through my every cell and I am expanded through time and space. I remember all that is and is to be, all that I am. Like a flash I hold within myself, the lives of all lives, the life of all life. The records of existence itself is encoded with my every cell. The illumination of all things light me up from the inside, and I am ablaze. I hear Her in the distance as She proclaims;
‘This is the City of Detachment.’
I am ablaze and my body is burning. I scream from an expected pain at the prospect of being charred, yet my body feels no pain. I realise that I am no longer my body I am watching my body burning, yet I am not that which is being burnt. I watch astonished as I am observing my own death. Yet I rise from my own ashes and fly into the heaven. I hear her distance voice call;
‘This is the City of Unity.’
I fly higher and higher until I reach the gates themselves where the Angels guard, the gates swing open and I am free to enter. Yet when I arrive I see that all that is present in a huge mirror, and I am guided to enter this mirror. Looking into my own reflection, I enter as I merge into myself I look again into the reflection and I see Anahita I touch my face and it is hers. Through me she speaks;
‘This is the City of Bewilderment.’
I look into the mirror with astonishment and confusion, where am I and where is She? I cannot grasp what is and what is not. My mind tries to grasp at that what is fluid and transparent, yet the more I grasp the more I am eluded. The further I go from the mirror and I am plunged onto the ground below. I hear the music and the dancer is whirling. I hear a faint voice of Anahita;
‘This is the City of Poverty and Nothingness’
As the dancer whirls I am left naked and trembling stripped of all that I had. I am full of nothing I roam around the dancer invisible, as she whirls each turn creates a vibration and I stand longing for all that I have lost, yet all have lost their meaning. There is nowhere to go, no one to be, as this realisation comes, there is no Anahita, there is no dancer, no dance, no music, no musicians. There is No –thing. No beginning and no end.
So Much Love, Mumtaz ❤
I would like to dedicate this piece to the amazing artists of the Concert of The Seven Cities of Love and to Gulcin Ulas Bulut the organiser. If you’d like to know more, visit their website www.uniquecircle.co.uk. Also I would like to especially name Farima Berenji the mystic dancer that features in this writing. It was only today, on the 15.10.15, that I discovered she had visited the ancient ruin of Goddess Anahita temple at the archaeological site of Persepolis, before she performed this dance ❤
You can see more on Farima’s work on the sacred Feminine on her website Farima Dance
© Mumtaz 2015 ❤