General Information about Religion of Hope


Teachings and Religious Writings

Listen With the Soles of Your Feet: An Introduction to the Teachings of Meres Geb

The Descent of Inanna Reconstructed.


Typographical Conventions

The teachings currently on this site originate with Meres Geb (other Gods' sayings may appear in the future). However, much of the text is not Her words. Maeve Rhea has written some of it. Aeyusha has the task of organizing and interpreting Meres Geb's sayings. We have used different typography to distinguish these contributions, and also to show the different levels of precision in quoting the Goddess.

Paragraphs that are indented and in italics are words just as we have heard them from Meres Geb. These quotations are as exact as we can make them: written down at the time or immediately afterwards, transcribed from tape recordings, or in the case of a few short sayings, remembered with unforgettable vividness. These words are the bedrock. They should never change, and if they do, we will explain fully. (Sayings heard from other Gods will use the same typography but the God will be identified.)

Words in quotation marks that are attributed to Meres Geb were less carefully recorded, and the wording may differ slightly from what was actually said. They also should not change.

Indirect quotation ("Meres Geb has said that...") is intended to represent the substance of what Meres Geb said in as much of the same wording as we can remember. What is reported this way usually agrees with multiple statements by Meres Geb on the same subject. Changes in these words may occur, corresponding to changes in our understanding of what Meres Geb meant, but they will be rare and will be explained.

Paragraphs that are in italics but not indented are by Maeve Rhea speaking as Meres Geb's Priestess.

Paragraphs in normal type make up most of the text. These were primarily written by Aeyusha. They are based on hundreds of conversations with Meres Geb. The text attempts to convey Her teachings as faithfully as possible, and as often as possible in words She or Maeve Rhea have used. Maeve Rhea reviews every version carefully and suggests revisions. Meres Geb also reviews the material through Maeve Rhea's eyes. (Italics within a paragraph in normal type are used in the ordinary way to mean emphasis.)


Accuracy

We have some knowledge of the history of religions, and in the light of that history, the responsibility of starting a new religion is a heavy one. We did not ask for it, and we would not be willing to share these teachings if we thought they would have harmful effects. However, to us they seem more socially responsible than any other teachings we know of. Our major concern is to share them with as little distortion and as little room for misunderstanding as possible.

After years of working with Meres Geb, we have no worries about Her authenticity or the possibility of our having deceived ourselves. She is a solid, consistent personality, challenging to work with but very comforting as well. She generally says everything to, or through, Maeve Rhea, but Aeyusha has also heard Her speak, twice so far. On one of those occasions She said the same thing to Maeve Rhea, who was 300 miles away at the time. So although there used to be a little voice that said "Well, maybe I'm crazy," which we considered an essential part of whatever claim to sanity we had left, we now hear it only on very bad mornings. We don't doubt Her existence anymore.

Yet Meres Geb is a Goddess, and this actually works out to be a severe limitation as compared with our normal expectations of human personalities. There are things that a God may not do in interacting with human beings, only a few of which we understand. Two of the underlying principles seem to be that the Gods must leave us free and that They must not harm us or anyone else by these interactions. There also seem to be things that a God knows will have undesirable effects even if they are allowable. These apparently include anything that causes dependency.

For reasons of these kinds, She will not supply the questions She is willing to answer, except for a few initial sayings. She has given us as little direction as She possibly could have done while still getting this site going. She has left the problems of representing Her effectively and accurately to us. These two obvious needs can conflict to some extent. To be effective, we need to explore implications of Her teachings that She has not spelled out with Her words.

Consequently, despite our best efforts at faithfulness to Her intent, there is quite a lot of normal-face text and quite a lot of ourselves in it. Besides summarizing what Meres Geb has said and our conclusions from it, the normal text carries Aeyusha's overall organization; the questions he has asked Meres Geb because he feels they are important; his selection of Her answers; his use of only the relevant parts of some quotations; his ideas of what is basic enough for an introduction; his emphasis; and his emotional reactions. All of these things have been discussed and reviewed extensively with Maeve Rhea.

At a deeper level, the text also carries the concepts and ideas of Maeve Rhea's own original and complex religious world-view. She has been developing these ideas since her childhood, basing them on extensive historical reading, her own spiritual experiences, and her internal conversations with many Gods from several different pantheons. These ideas make up the language in which Meres Geb and other Gods can communicate with her. Of course the Gods can and do add new concepts to that language as needed, but They cannot tear it all down and start over.

We are not sure why Meres Geb has chosen not to dictate the whole text, but we have some ideas. For one, we think She wants the readers to do the work of integrating what She says into their own thinking. If She wrote Her own book, those who accepted it would tend to memorize instead of thinking. Interpretation would be the domain of specialists. That is not the kind of religion this is. Everything in it is meant to be taken in, processed, and used.

A different but related reason is that the world as Meres Geb sees it is far too complicated for her to tell us the exact truth. She has actually said this in relation to the subject of karmic justice. Her sayings, in relation to the reality they describe, are like the grid of measurements on which a weather map is based. Someone has to construct a description of what is happening in between the sample points. There is no way that even She could do this with perfect accuracy, given the limitations of space, the English language, and the potential readers' different assumptions.

A third reason for Meres Geb not to write the whole text is that readers need flexibility so that they can adapt the belief-system to their own needs, and integrate it with other belief systems. As the text stands now, Her sayings hang on the rest of the text like beads on a string. The string flexes in the sense that its organization, emphasis, and application are open to reinterpretation, either by us when we see a way to improve it, or by the reader.

There are probably a few of the interpretations and explanations in the text that are not completely correct. The kinds of mistakes we think may remain are interpretations that are more general than they should be, or perhaps somewhat misleading as to Meres Geb's real intent. We do not believe these affect major issues. There will be examples in a "Changes" section. We think Meres Geb accepts such things because She needs us to work hard enough to find them, rather than depending on Her oversight.

Inevitably, there are many details that have been glossed over, apparent contradictions due to the nature of the subject matter, and the like. We will do our best to explain each of those that we become aware of, either by changing the text or by posting a new section on a topic that includes it.


Changes

(This section is under construction. It will list and explain significant changes from previous versions.)


Plans For This Site

Format: We do intend to beautify the site when we have time and work through the technical details. We will try to keep it as available to as many browsers as we can.

Changes: Material presented as a belief system should be stable. We are trying to make this material as stable as possible, which means being extremely careful about the quotations and trying to keep the explanatory text within the bounds of what we are sure of. We will probably learn more and may add to or change the text. We will explain any changes that make a significant difference, though not necessarily the additions.

New material: We already have some material that is not on the site. The challenge is to assemble and organize it in such a way that it is understandable and not misleading, which is very time-consuming. We expect to present most of the new material as separate sections on particular subjects. We hope to be able to add this kind of update every month. Also, we believe that Meres Geb has more that She wishes to share than She has already communicated, although we do not know how much. As we receive it, we will probably present most of this material too in the form of separate discussions on particular subjects.

Other kinds of material: Meres Geb has suggested that we write what will amount to essays on aspects of Her teachings in our words. The one She has mentioned is a series on the Five Lessons of Life. We believe She will discuss these subjects with us and answer our questions on them, but we will have to find most of the questions. When we post these sections we will make their origins clear.

Other Gods: We have now added a page concerning the Goddess Inanna (The Descent of Inanna Reconstructed.) This material does not yet include "teachings" in the same direct sense as Listen With the Soles of Your Feet, but clearly fits well in the framework of this site. We may in the future add material that involves our experience of other God-forms and our work with them.

Related sites: At the moment we do not have plans to add links to related sites. We would not want to create a link that could be interpreted as an endorsement by Meres Geb. As far as we know She has no plans for such links Herself.


About Us

Meres Geb's religion is a belief system but not an organization. There is no membership and especially no collection plate. This site is not an organization either, just the two of us.

We are Pagans and polytheists. We call ourselves Witches. by which we mean Pagan clergy, or inheritors of the nearly-destroyed European shamanic tradition, not practitioners of evil magic. There are many websites that discuss modern Witchcraft. There is some general consensus on approach and basic principles in the community, but there is no single organization that can speak for Pagans or Witches.

Maeve Rhea and Aeyusha are our magical names, by which we are known in our community. Aeyusha is a name given by Meres Geb; She says that it was the name by which She knew Aeyusha best, in ancient Egypt. Maeve Rhea has had her magical name since she was first initiated.

We have some personal qualifications for this work. There are still some people who hear the Gods, and a few people can invoke a God, letting the God speak through her or him. Maeve Rhea has both of these abilities. Her first internal conversations with a Goddess occurred in her early childhood. She has been a public Witch for over 30 years, regularly invoking Goddesses in ritual for most of that time. She has published a book on how to do this and has trained several people. She is now able to lend Meres Geb her voice more or less whenever she chooses, when she is in calm and familiar settings. Occasionally Meres Geb will initiate a conversation with Aeyusha through her.

Aeyusha has done graduate work in Philosophy. After marrying Maeve Rhea, he converted very slowly to Paganism and then began training with her to be a Witch. Around that time he began studying the history of both ancient and modern religions. He has had hundreds of conversations with Meres Geb, and occasionally other Goddesses, with the Goddess in each case using Maeve Rhea's voice. (The Goddesses sound different from Maeve Rhea and from each other.) At this point he has heard Gods directly only a few times, and only in very deep ritual space.

Those who have been accepted as communicating the words of Gods have often been revered as holy people. We are absolutely not that. We have normal quirks, dysfunctions, and ingrained bad habits. We make plenty of mistakes. We try to behave, and sometimes fail. Billions of people do those things, many of them with more success than we have had.

None of our qualifications give us any authority of any kind, except about our own experience of Meres Geb and the other Gods who may be spoken of or quoted on this site. Meres Geb has other devotees who may be able to talk with Her. (So far as we know, they know Her as Meresger or Meretseger.) There are also millions of other Gods, who each, as Meres Geb says, have Their own Truth.


Contact Us

To comment or ask questions, email either of us at verizon.net. The destination mailbox name can be maeverhea or aeyusha. We will keep all mail confidential unless you explicitly tell us that we may post your question and our answer. If we don't know the answer and think Meres Geb might be willing to answer the question, we may ask Her.






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