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Magna Mater

 



Prayers to Magna Deum Mater Idaea

O eternal Creatrix of Gods and men, who animates forest and stream with soul, and joins seeds of life together throughout the world, and You bear the stones of Pyrrha that were enlivened into men by the hand of Prometheus. Hungry men You were first to give nourishment with a variety of foods. You encircle and carry the sea within You. Under Your power are the gentleness of domesticated herds and the ferocity of wild beasts and the repose from flight of birds. Firm and immobile, unsetting power of the earth suspended in the vacuum of space, You are the center around which the rapid heavens revolve. All the heavenly bodies, in chariots of fire, wheel about You, O center of the universe, indivisible from the Great Brotherhood of the Gods. Therefore are You the Bountiful who nourishes so many nations, and at the same time so many high cities and so many noble peoples. You provide Yourself and all the world as one, from above and below. You carry without effort to Yourself Atlas, who toils to hold up the celestial field of stars. We alone do You refuse to carry. Do we weigh You down, Goddess? For what unwitting wrong, I pray, must we atone? That we would so soon come here as a small band of strangers from distant Inachian shores? It is unworthy of You, most beneficial Goddess, to set limits by such cruel means on every side against all that is human merely by birth, against people who everywhere are Your own. May You then abide with and bear arms for all alike. I pray You allow that those warriors who spend their last breathe in the battle will have their souls return once more into the heavens. Do not so suddenly carry us off to our tomb and take the breath from our body. Do not be in such haste; soon enough we will come as all do when You lead them along the path that all must travel. Only listen to our pleas and keep a level plain for the Pelasgians and do not hasten the swift Fates. And You, dear to the Gods, not by any hand or Sidonian sword were you dispatched, but mighty Nature opened Her heart to you, entombing you for your merits in Cirrha's chasm, welcoming you in Her loving embrace. May You joyously grant, I pray, that I may come to know You in my prayers, that You may council me on the heavens and give true warnings from Your prophetic altars, and that You may teach me what You are prepared to reveal to people. I will perform Your rites of divination, and in Apollo's absence I will call Your prophet and upon Your divine spirit for visions. That distant place to which You hurry is, to me, more potent than all the shrines of Delos and Cirrha, better by far than the sanctuary of any other shrine.

Statius Thebiad 8.303-38

 

Who is the Mother of the Gods? She is the source of the intellectual and creative gods, who, in their turn guide the visible gods: She is both the Mother and Spouse of mighty Jupiter; She came into being next to and together with the great creator; She is in control of every form of life, and the cause of all generation; She easily brings to perfection all things that are made, without pain She brings to birth, and with the Father's aid creates all things that are; She is the motherless maiden, enthroned at the side of Jupiter, and in very truth is the Mother of All the Gods. For having received into Herself the causes of all the gods, both intelligible and supramundane, She became the source of the intellectual gods.

Julian the Blessed IV.112

 

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