Friday, October 14, 2011

Divine Friday



Pronounced Blow-dye-weth, she is created out of flowers of Oak, Broom and Meadowsweet by Math ap Mathonwy for his nephew, Lleu Llaw Gyffes in order to break a curse set on him by his mother, Arianrhod. After her birth she is immediately married to Lleu in the traditional way of a feast and consummation of man and wife. Shortly after Lleu decides to visit his uncle Math, leaving Blodeuwedd by herself. A huntsman known as Gronw Bebyr, lord of Pennllyn is hunting nearby and Blodeuwedd offers him hospitality, understanding that he is far from home. They quickly fall in love and sleep together that very night. Three days later he leaves with a plan to find out how to kill her husband.

When Lleu returns she rejects any of his advances, telling him she is worried about his possible death. Lleu laughs and explains that he can’t be killed by mortal means.  He continues with the series of events that must take place; he must not be on land nor in water, inside nor outside, on the earth nor in the air. He also tells her that someone would need a year to make a spear that could kill him and it could only be made while people were at mass on Sunday. Blodeuwedd sends word to Gronw who waits a year for the spear to be made and injures Lleu who, when poisoned by the spear, shapeshifts into an eagle and flies away. He does not, however, go unpunished. Lleu is nursed back to health by his uncle, Math, and descends upon the home of Gronw and Blodeuwedd where he kills Gronw in the same way he was injured; by a spear thrown on the banks of the Cynfael River.

Many scholars believe that Blodeuwedd fulfills the function of the archetypal Earth Mother or May Queen in relation to her husband’s role as sacrificial king. Another viewpoint is from feminist historians and writer’s who view her as a physically and mentally abused woman, forced to marry against her will. They see her as a victim who lashes out to free herself from her situation and choose her own life.

Blodeuwedd teaches us that balance and transformation are necessary parts of life. She encourages us to live life to the fullest and acknowledge our faults and attributes. Only when we have the courage to unite our two halves, will we be amazed by our innate power and strength.

Month of Pumpkin for Friday!

      Dress up your table for a dinner party! Halve a pumpkin, hollow it out and fill with water then float flowers in the water. (Or nice fall floating candles!)

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