Thursday, June 02, 2016

Creating a New Oracular System

The Green Pulse Oracle

Frequently people ask me what I’ve been doing.  Well, one of the projects I’ve been helping my friend Jo Carson to brew is a new oracular system that’s never been seen before.  The late Fred Adams, founder of a religion he called Feraferia, chose Jo as his literary executor, and I must say it’s a testament to his foresight that he selected Jo; she’s taken his entire archives, which are extensive, and has been working on bringing his teachings alive and making them available to others beyond the Southern California birthplace of Feraferia.

For readers who may not know of Fred, he had a visionary experience of what he called the Goddess in 1956, and thereafter dedicated the rest of his life to bringing awareness of Her into the contemporary world.  He formally introduced the religion he called Feraferia in 1967.  Its symbol is the Phytala.  The periodical that he published and illustrated he named Korythalia, describing Feraferia thusly:

Feraferia is a Pagan fellowship for the erotic celebration of Wilderness Mysteries with Faerie style and grace, and for the lyrical unification of ecology, mythology, and sacrament.  In such play-love-work may women and men be reunited with Great Nature, each other, and their own beings...

Beginning circa 1970, Fred began amalgamating his understandings of various writings, divinatory systems, and symbols into his own unique set of symbols.  Drawing from the Tarot, the Celtic Ogham alphabet, the Chinese I Ching, astrology, and especially the Tree Alphabet Calendar as articulated by Robert Graves.  Originally called the Axerian Hieroglyphs by Fred, this nature-based system is now called The Green Pulse Oracle, the phrase “Her green pulse” taken from one of Fred’s poems.

In an effort to make Fred’s research available to the public, Jo has taken these massive amounts of notes, diagrams, marginalia, and such and synthesized them into the more accessible form of this Green Pulse Oracle.

We felt we needed something tangible to use in divination. Jo and her artist husband, John Reed, began by creating a set of cards, pictured below.

The idea is that they can be consulted, like the Tarot, the Ogham, or the I Ching, to help people get a sense of the forces and influences at play in a given situation.

John Reed then undertook the task of turning the symbols into three-dimensional markers.  First he began making prints of real leaves to use as markers, with the leaf pattern on the reverse and the glyph on the front.  They were pretty, but didn’t lay flat and were made of fired clay, which would have been heavy, easily breakable or chippable, and difficult to manufacture on any scale beyond an individual custom-made set.

Still, the leaf shape appealed to us and was in concordance with a system based on trees.  John experimented with thin pieces of wood, cut into a vesica piscis (Latin “bladder of a fish”) shape.  This shape carries many associations in sacred geometry, including the union of male and female, and the vagina, and is said to be a “source of immense power and energy.”  As Jo said, “We liked the idea of calling the markers ‘Leaves,’ since the system is based on the Tree Alphabet Calendar.”

In the photo above, you can see the wax version, prepared for using on ceramic markers, featuring the glyph called Ailm.

“Ailm” correlates with the Water element, the Moon Tarot card, the Silver Fir, Palm or Elm tree, birth and cosmic stimulus, the number one, the vowel A, Winter Solstice and Yule, and with the ocean deeps.

The second marker is a wooden “leaf” with the Ailm glyph burned into it.  The following leaves show test versions of the Feraferia Phytala design that will be on the reverse of all the leaves.

An explanatory book, featuring lots of Fred’s artwork, will accompany The Green Pulse Oracle.

The work of correlating Fred’s voluminous writings and notes, and fortifying it with independent research, is tremendous.  Jo is doing the heavy lifting while I am serving as consulting editor.  I find this project fascinating and engrossing, and I’m delighted to be in on the ground floor, as it were, in creating a brand new oracular system.