This diagram shows the principal goddesses revered here. The vertical axis represents personal inner transformation toward love, faith and resilience, and the horizontal axis represents outer transformation and creation of a healthy, rich, sustainable environment. The symbols of the goddesses and moon phases are shown. Aphrodite is not a moon goddess but is represented in the night sky by her namesake planet, Venus. Between the main axes are ranged the seasons.
Also indicated are those part of the land here at La Ville au Roi that are dedicated to each goddess, a sacred geography that reflects the character of the land. Within the domain of Demeter are work areas, the original meditation path and other mysteries; the land of Artemis is mostly wild forest and winding paths, including the Enchanted Wood; in Aphrodite's land there is a Secret Field and also a Dance Circle; and in Eirene's domain lies the meditation kuti and recreation bonfire. The gardens are divided between Eirene and Demeter. Each goddess has a fire altar in her land and we are starting to put other shrines on the borders. Revering the goddesses in this way deepens our appreciation of this magical environment and allows them to shape us in endlessly creative ways.
Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, Celestials, Gods & Goddesses
The Buddhist texts are full of encounters with celestials. Devas, gandharavas and others thickly populate the Buddhist cosmos and although Buddhists are forbidden to speculate on their true nature, it is normal for Buddhists to revere the Buddhas and bodhisattvas of unmeasurable life. Great bodhisattvas such as Quan Yin and Tai Shih Chih can manifest in whatever form will function best to express their compassionate purpose in reaching out to different groups of beings. Here we revere them as goddesses. Tai Shih Chih is the makers of lands of harmony and so is associated with the horizontal axis of the diagram, whereas Quan Yin is concerned with the transformation of individuals through love and compassion and so is associated with the vertical axis. We can, therefore, associate Amida Buddha, the source of all spiritual light, with the origin point of the diagram.
Mandalas of this kind are an aid to spiritual growth, inward and outward. They colour and populate our spiritual universe. That universe has no ultimate fixed form, but is, rather, a zone of continual creativity and arising of the clear light of joy and rapture.
In the Buddhist texts, the Buddha is described as "teacher of gods and humans" and at all the important events of the life of Shakyamuni the gods assembled and bore witness, often entering into dialogue with the sage. Surely we too should revere the way of the gods as a radiant bridge to ultimate truths beyond our reach.