IX. TO NATURE
The FUMIGATION from AROMATICS.
NATURE, all parent, ancient, and divine,
O Much-mechanic mother, art is thine;
Heav'nly, abundant, venerable queen,
In ev'ry part of thy dominions seen.
Untam'd, all-taming, ever splendid light,
All ruling, honor'd, and supremly bright.
Immortal, first-born, ever still the same,
Nocturnal, starry, shining, glorious dame.
Thy feet's still traces in a circling course,
By thee are turn'd, with unremitting force.
Pure ornament of all the pow'rs divine,
Finite and infinite alike you shine;
To all things common and in all things known,
Yet incommunicable and alone.
Without a father of thy wond'rous frame,
Thyself the father whence thy essence came.
All-flourishing, connecting, mingling soul,
Leader and ruler of this mighty whole.
Life-bearer, all-sustaining, various nam'd,
And for commanding grace and beauty fam'd.
Justice, supreme in might, whose general sway
The waters of the restless deep obey.
Ætherial, earthly, for the pious glad,
Sweet to the good, but bitter to the bad.
All-wife, all bounteous, provident, divine,
A rich increase of nutriment is thine;
Father of all, great nurse, and mother kind,
Abundant, blessed, all-spermatic mind:
Mature, impetuous, from whose fertile seeds
And plastic hand, this changing scene proceeds. 30
All-parent pow'r, to mortal eyes unseen,
Eternal, moving, all-sagacious queen.
By thee the world, whose parts in rapid flow,
Like swift descending streams, no respite know,
On an eternal hinge, with steady course 35
Is whirl'd, with matchless, unremitting force.
Thron'd on a circling car, thy mighty hand
Holds and directs, the reins of wide command.
Various thy essence, honor'd, and the best,
Of judgement too, the general end and test.
Intrepid, fatal, all-subduing dame,
Life-everlasting, Parca, breathing flame.
Immortal, Providence, the world is thine,
And thou art all things, architect divine.
O blessed Goddess, hear thy suppliant's pray'r,
And make my future life, thy constant care;
Give plenteous seasons, and sufficient wealth,
And crown my days with lasting, peace and health.
the Protogeos of nature. Mother Nature was one of the first beings to emerge at creation, a primal being of creation and regarded as both male and female. Similar in certain aspects to Gaia, Tethys, Eros and Phanes.
According to the Orphic Cosmogonies the first principle was Cronus, or Time, from which came Chaos, which symbolised the infinite, and Ether, which symbolised the finite. Chaos was surrounded by Night, which formed the enveloping cover under which, by the creative action of the Ether, cosmic matter was slowly organised. This finally assumed the shape of an egg of which Night formed the shell.
In the centre of this gigantic egg, whose upper section formed the vault of the sky and whose lower section was the earth, was born the first being, Phanes - the Light. It was Phanes who, by union with Night, created Heaven and Earth. It was he also who engendered Zeus.
When Uranus was reduced to impotence, Cronus liberated his brothers, the Titans - with the exception of the Cyclopes and the Hecatoncheires - and became chief new dynasty.
Under his reign the work of creation continued. Night gave birth to Doom, to black Ker and to Death; then to Sleep and his retinue of Dreams. She then bore bantering Gaiety (Momus) and wailing Misery and the Hesperides who guarded the golden apples beyond the Ocean. Then came the Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos, who when a mortal was born, portioned his share of good and evil. Night also bore Nemesis, fearful to mortals, Fraud, Incontinence, Old Age and Eris who in turn gave birth to Sorrow, Forgetfulness and Hunger, to Disease, Combat, Murder, Battles, Massacres, Quarrels, Equivocations, to Injustice and Oaths.
Pontus, the sea, united with Gaea, the earth, to produce the Truthful, Thaumas the Monstrous, Phorcys the Intrej pretty-cheeked Ceto and Eurybia with the heart of steel. To Nereus and Doris, daughter of the Ocean, were bo daughters, the Nereids. To Thaumas and Electra were bo the rainbow, and the Harpies with their fair tresses. By Ceto bore the Graeae (the Old Ones) who came into the with white hair, and the Gorgons who lived beyond the land of the Hesperides.
“The Greeks used the term phusis to refer to all that
is, insofar as it is. Today we translate this word as
“nature,” from the Latin nasci, to be born. The Greek
word comes from phuein: hatching or opening out, which is als o
the root of the word phainesthai, to enlighten, to shed light on.
In a rough distinction, Latin thinking attends to the generation
of things, and Greek thinking attends to their appearance or
emergence into light. Nature according to what the Greek word
states is the whole of thatwhich shows itself to us, it is
showing itself…The origin of all things, according to this
vocabulary, lets itself be thought as the presence of that which
is present: a presence which is prior to any human intention, and
which makes it possible. The origin of all things is their
appearing in presence.” (R. Schürmann,“Symbolic
Difference,” Graduate Faculty Journal, vol. 19 no. 2
– vol. 20 no.1. p.23.)