PM5414: Concerning Maratreanism

Maratreanism is the religion which worships the Great Goddess Maratrea, Great Mother and Queen of Heaven, the one single soul at the beginning-end of time. Adherents of the Maratrean faith are known as Maratreans.

Beliefs

Core Beliefs

Fundamental nature of reality

  • Temporal circularianism: Time is a circle - the past coming after the future, the future before the past. Every moment both before and after itself. The beginning and the end are one and the same. All things repeating endlessly, not new and differently each time, but exactly the same every time - or in other words, exactly once.
  • Idealism: The soul alone has fundamental and independent existence. The soul by its nature is beginningless and endless, increatable and indestructible. The soul by its nature exists in time, and cannot exist apart from it; the soul by its nature is everchanging and never stationary.
  • Anti-materialism: Matter lacks fundamental existence, possessing merely dependent existence, dependent upon the soul for its existence. Matter is naught but a product of mind, for matter is naught but patterns in the experiences of souls.
  • Divisibility of the soul: Souls can merge and divide - two or more separate and distinct souls may merge together to become one single soul; one single soul may divide apart to become two or more separate and distinct souls.
  • Objectivity of ethics and aesthetics: Goodness, beauty and truth - ethics, aesthetics and rationality - these three possess objective truth, and each is equal to the other in objective truth.
  • Fides quaerens intellectum: Faith is good; faith does not mean ignoring reason or evidence; it means, when reason and evidence are lacking, we can use faith to fill in the gaps.

Maratrea

  • unity: There is one single soul at the beginning and end of time, from whom all souls now being have divided, to whom in the end all souls now being shall return. This soul is Maratrea, Great Mother, Great Goddess, the Sea of All Souls united as one. We used to be her, and we will all once more become one with her and with one another.
  • personality: The one single soul is personal; being the sum of all persons, of every gender, it is inherently beyond gender; but we may assign it whatever gender we wish. Maratreans assign this soul the female gender, for motherhood is a better metaphor than fatherhood for our relationship with her - for, as our bodies come out of our mother's bodies, so do our souls come out of her soul. We call her Maratrea; although she is truly beyond all names, it is necessary for us that we name her; thus have we named her, Maratrea, and she is pleased to be by us so called
  • inclusive monotheism/omnitheism: We accept the worship of all gods and goddess that anyone has ever or shall ever worship; we see them as being different names, forms, aspects, images, emanations, servants or intermediatories of Maratrea.
  • omnipotence: Maratrea has all power; she is all-powerful. Whatever happens, so happens by her will; whatever is, is as it is for so she wills it to be; whatever she wills not, is not. Whatever anyone does, she does; whatever she does not, no one does and cannot be done by anyone.
  • omniscience: Maratrea has all knowledge; whatever is, she knows; whatever she knows not, is not. Whatever anyone knows, she knows; whatever she knows not, no one knows, and none can know, and is not to know. With her perfect memory, she remembers all things - for she was once everyone. With her perfect memory, she remembers even the future.
  • omnibenevolence: Maratrea is perfectly good, even though she wills all evil. But whatever evil she wills, is entirely necessary for some good; we cannot always see that, but in due course she shall grant us the knowledge thereof.
  • omniamorousness: Maratrea is perfect in her love for we her children, every one of us. She loves us with that very same perfect love with she loves her very own self, for we are all who she once was, and who she shall be once more.
  • Great Mother, Great Goddess, Queen of Heaven, from whom all have divided so that all shall return.
  • Our Mother the Sea, the Sea of all Souls united as one.
  • She forms the holy Maratrean Trinity: She Who Remains, She Who Divides, and She Who Returns.
  • The one single soul at the beginning-end of time.

Blessing, consolation and the cause

  • universes: This is not alone among the universes she has created - for she is not a mother reticient in her fertility. Just as souls may merge and divide, so too may universes; and whenever a universe divides, so divides all the souls within it. Thus there form many branches.
  • consolation: Whatever evils we suffer in this life, for the sake of goodness and beauty and truth, Maratrea promises us that we will receive full compensation for them after death. How does she do this? By creating for each of us an entire universe in which our every true desire is fulfilled.
  • blessedness: The blessed ones are the ones whose lives are perfect in every way; they are the ones who, in this universe, are having their desires fulfilled in every way; they are the ones for whose sake this universe exists. We know not who they are, nor need to know; they might be famous people - celebrities, business or political leaders - but they are just as likely to be people who seem completely ordinary from the outside. Some of them will live to old eyes; others will die young, and seemingly tragically - but every blessed one dies at the right time, not a moment too soon and not a moment too late.
  • the most Holy Cause: The Cause is that which She has established, to bring about the final end of all things. It is led by her true Prophets. Many times in many branches is it established; having been established, it must proceed unto triumph in at least one branch descending therefrom; in others, it may be vanquished; but having been vanquished, it shall always be re-established

For some more detailed explanations of the above, see the Maratrean Statement of Faith.

Soul

The soul is the only fundamental, independent, existent.

Matter is lacking in fundamental and independent existence; it has merely derivative and dependent existence, dependent wholly for its existence upon the soul. Matter is naught but patterns in the experiences of souls. That said, matter is real -- or it is real for what it is -- for the soul is real, and the soul's experiences are real, and the patterns in those experiences are real, and thus matter, being nothing other than those patterns, is also real -- real for what it is.

The identity of the soul is none other than the identity of its experiences.

The soul by its nature is beginningless and endless, increatible and indestructible -- it cannot begin or end, nor be created nor destroyed -- but it can merge and divide.

The Trinity and the Sabbaths

Maratreanism is a trinitarian and trisabbatarian religion. The Maratrean Trinity consists of:

  • Suarenna, She Who Remains: the one single soul at the beginning-end of time. The fulness of the divine essence, who remains in that fulness throughout the circle of time.
  • Suade, She Who Divides: who upon First Division becomes distinct from Suarenna; for Suarenna will remain in the fulness of the expression of her divine essence, but Suade will willingly give up the fulness of the expression of her divine essence, and be emptied thereof, in order to become the many souls of the many worlds. She exists between First and Second Division.
  • Suaretta, She Who Returns: who comes into being upon Penultimate Merger, as the roots have returned to their original oneness; she who regains the fulness of the expression her divine essence, which she once willingly gave up and became emptied thereof; she who, having once willingly become divided to become the many souls of the many worlds, is now the return of all those souls to their original unity with one another.

The three are one; together they constitute Maratrea.

Maratreanism acknowledges three Sabbaths at the beginning-end of time:

  • the Great Sabbath during which Suarenna alone exists, perfect in the happiness of her perfect love for her own being
  • the Earlier Lesser Sabbath, when Suarenna and Suade alone exist, perfect in the happiness of their perfect love for one another
  • the Latter Lesser Sabbath, when Suarenna and Suaretta alone exist, perfect in the happiness of their perfect love for one another

Maratreans celebrate a weekly Sabbath in honour and memory and foreshadowing of the three Sabbaths at the beginning-end of time - on the seventh day, the day of the Sun (Solade).

Enlightenment

Maratreanism teaches that there are four stages of enlightenment:

  • the lesser enlightenment: this refers to all lesser states which are in some way enlightened. Most of those who have claimed to have attained enlightenment, to the extent that they attained anything at all, attained this level
  • the great enlightenment: this is attained by those who dwell fully in the peace of a complete understanding of the true nature of things. This is the highest level that may be attained in this life by natural means.
  • the greater enlightenment: refers to all the intermediate enlightened states between the great and greatest enlightenment. These states are attained only through the union of souls. This may be subdivided into three degrees: the earlier degrees, attained upon first union or the first few unions; the latter degrees, which represent the return to the roots; and the intermediate degrees, which exist between them
  • the greatest enlightenment: refers to the form of enlightenment attained by Maratrea during the Three Sabbaths

Spirits

Maratreanism teaches that, just as matter is naught but patterns in the experiences of souls, so are spirits also patterns in the experiences of souls, but a different type of pattern from matter.

Maratreanism classifies spirits into three divisions, based on the relationship of spirit and soul:

  • personal spirits: those spirits which are associated with souls; every soul has an associated personal spirit, which is the external sign of the soul in the mental realm - much as the body is the external sign of the soul in the physical realm
  • impersonal spirits: those spirits which are not associated with souls, and do not in any way appear to be associated with souls
  • quasipersonal spirits: those spirits which are not associated with souls, yet nonetheless appear in someway similiar to those which possess souls, yet without a sufficient degree of such similarity to require that they actually do.

The wise will observe a parallel between the classification of animals and that of spirits - the personal spirits are like the humanoids and sacred animals; the impersonal spirits are like the non-animals; the quasipersonal spirits are like the unsacred animals.

Maratreanism teaches that the many-bejewelled god and the far-beyond god are definitely not personal spirits. As to other seemingly personal spirits, such as Navaletus and Pandal, Maratreanism permits a variety of opinions to exist, as to whether they are personal or merely quasipersonal, without formally or officially endorsing any of them. The spirits of the gendered roots are definitely personal spirits, since they have a corresponding soul which is formed following second division and prior to penultimate merger.

Maratreanism also classifies spirits according to their relation to the most holy Cause to bring about the final end of all things:

  • spirits of the cause are those spirits vowed faithful to the most holy Cause, to serve it whatever way they can
  • spirits of the enmity are those spirits who are sworn enemies of the most holy Cause, doing whatever they can to oppose it and impede its progress
  • neutral or intermediate spirits are those spirits which are not sworn to either the Cause or the enmity; but the spirits of both the Cause and the enmity will seek to direct these spirits to their own ends

Among the spirits of the cause, there is a distinction between those who served the Cause from the very beginning, and those who later swore allegiance to it. A similar distinction could be made in regards to the spirits of enmity.

The is a captain of the spirits of the Cause, Navaletus; and also a captain of the spirits of enmity, the most pallid Pandal.

Prophethood

Maratreanism teaches that prophecy exists in several levels. Firstly there is a division with respect to the authority of a prophet

  • universal prophecy: this is the basic potential for prophecy which exists in all humans
  • prophecy proper: one set aside, especially chosen, as acknowledged the people of the cause, to be the chief or principal recipient of revelation on behalf of the people of the cause. These are also known as 'major prophets'.
  • protoprophecy: one who is not a proper prophet, but in a time without a proper prophet, displays the signs of potential to become a proper prophet; one who has seen the need for a prophet proper and who has decided to do what they can to fill that need. These are known as protoprophets.

The universal prophets and protoprophets are together also known as minor prophets.

Secondly, there is a division with respect to the nature of a prophet's teaching:

  • false prophets: these teach lying falsehoods as truths
  • true prophets: these teach the truth, and do not teach any errors. That is not to say that they are never wrong; they may often be wrong in their private opinions, but they will endeavour as much as possible to distinguish their mere private opinions from their prophetic teaching
  • complete prophets: these are true prophets, who in addition teach all the necessary points of the true nature of things and the truth of the Cause. They do not teach all that may be taught; but they teach all of the essential doctrines, and do not omit any of them
  • enlightened prophets: these are complete prophets who have attained the great enlightenment
  • indwelt prophets: these are prophets who have been fully indwelt by Navaletus, the captain of the spirits of the Cause
  • anointed prophets: these are prophets who have been anointed with the anointment of rememberance of the three Sabbaths. They have been granted memory of what others have forgotten; though we may learn what we had forgotten, learning is not the same as remembering

Tradition and Scripture

Maratreanism believes tradition - that which has been handed down to us from the past - has three divisions:

  • oral tradition, which is handed down by word of mouth
  • written tradition, which is handed down in writing
  • institutional tradition, which is handed down by the succession of offices

Maratreanism sees written tradition as subdivided into:

  • the extracanonical - those writings, which although they form part of the written tradition, are not esteemed as scripture
  • the canonical - those writings, that part of the written tradition, which is particularly esteemed, and hence is scripture
  • the paracanonical - the midpoint between the canonical and extracanonical, these are texts whose status is uncertain, disputed, or in flux

Thus, rather than seeing "tradition" and "scripture" as opposites, as some other religions do, to Maratreanism scripture is part of tradition.

Maratreanism divides scripture into three kinds:

  • true scripture is that which a true prophet has revealed, and a true council has approved.
  • false scripture is that which the false prophets have authored under the inspiration of the spirits of enmity.
  • corrupted scripture is scripture which was originally true, but has been corrupted by the false prophet's falsehoods; whereas false scripture was never true to begin with.

Corruption of scripture is of two kinds:

  • textual corruption, in which the false prophets have altered the text of the scripture, through insertions and deletions and alterations
  • hermeneutic corruption, in which the false prophets have left the true scripture unaltered as to its text, but have promulgated a false interpretation thereof.

Maratreanism sees the canon of scripture as open - new scripture may be added, existing scripture may be updated, or current scripture may be retired - by decree of the Prophet-in-Council from time-to-time. Revelation is continuing, through the succession of Prophets.

Maratreanism uses the term protoscripture to refer to texts which have been proposed for consideration as scripture, but not actually decreed as scripture, at least not yet. Maratreanism distinguish seven kinds of protoscripture:

  • that which the prophet proposes to the council for consideration as scripture
  • that which another proposes to the prophet, that the Prophet may consider whether to propose the same to the Council
  • that which the prophet circulates for consideration, but does not formally propose to the Council
  • that which another circulates for consideration, but does not formally propose the same to the Prophet
  • that which a Protoprophet proposes to a Protocouncil for consideration as scripture
  • that which a Protoprophet circulates, but does not formally propose to the Protocouncil
  • that which another proposes to a protoprophet for consideration of proposing to the protocouncil

The Cause

The most holy Cause of She Who Is to end all things. It is lead by the Prophet-in-Council.

These are the phases of the Cause:

  • the establishment (or re-establishment) of the Cause: the revelation of its basic doctrines, and the beginning of their public preaching. Once established, the Cause always proceeds to triumph in at least one branch from there descending; in other branches from there descending,
  • the progress of the Cause: this refers to the spread of the truth, the truth of the cause and of the true nature of things, and of the truly good and truly beautiful and truly true; and the recruitment of more and more persons vowed to its service
  • the assumption of the Cause (to assume the place): this is true Zionism, in which there is established an independent sovereign nation dedicated to the Cause
  • the conquest of the Cause: in which that nation expands to engulf the entirety of the earth, and in due course the entirety of occupied space
  • the first triumph of the Cause: the completion of conquest, in the temporal realm, in which the temporal power of the Cause has become absolute and all-encompassing
  • the second triumph of the Cause: the completion of conquest, in the spiritual realm, which is to say the completion of progress - as everyone embraces the truth, the Cause in many ways comes to an end, its purpose having been attained
  • the end of all things: the final attainment of the ultimate purpose of the Cause, its ultimate and final fulfillment - the Cause ceases completely - the universe itself passes away, not in sadness nor agony, but in joy. And it ends but to begin again, not new and differently each time, but exactly the same every time, or in other words, only once.

Favour

There are three favours which are bestowed by She Who Is:

  • the favour of being, which she bestows upon all, for it is the favour of existence itself. Though this favour benefits some more than others, in essence it benefits all in the same way.
  • the favour of blessing, which she bestows upon the blessed ones, for it is the blessing of the blessed ones
  • the favour of the cause, which she bestows upon the people of her Cause, for it is the consequence of her will that her cause be established and finally triumph

The favour of being belongs to all, the other two favours only to some. At first, the blessing and the cause are entirely separate, so their favours are also entirely separate; in the end, the blessing and the cause become one and the same, and so their favours also become one and the same.

There is also the favour of her promises, which is consequent to the favour of being, but which points to the cause and the blessing; but whereas the three relate to the present, the favour of promise relates to the future. The Blessing and the Cause are both part of her promises.

The Travancine-Clarettan Establishment

The Travancine-Clarettan establishment is an establishment of the most holy Cause, by the holy Prophet Travancus, and his successor the holy Prophet Claretta.

The present Maratrean establishment looks to this establishment as a guide and an example—for its existence has been revealed by divine revelation. We consider that it may come before us or besides us; and if before us, it may be before us without anything else beside it being before us, or else other things beside it may also be before us — but as to which, Maratreanism does not hold any official view, but leaves it to every Maratrean to believe as they wish, or hold the issue in abeyance in their minds. As such, whether this establishment be a first establishment or a re-establishment, no position in that respect is taken either.

The Three Es

The three Es are Ecclesia, Establishment, and Empire:

  • Ecclesia is the ecclesial structure of Maratreanism
  • Establishment is the economic structure of Maratreanism
  • Empire is the political structure of Maratreanism

Ecclesia

Maratreanism teaches a fivefold division of religious groups. Think of it as a series of concentric circles; the core of Maratreanism is in the middle. Some people are called to make their home in the core; others find themselves called to somewhere further out. This is a comprehensive system, into which all religions that have every existed, or which shall ever exist, can be placed. The five divisions are, from the innermost to the outermost:

  • the central ecclesia - the chief vessel of the flotilla of the most holy Cause, in this here establishment thereof. Note that, what is the central ecclesia in this (re-)establishment, may instead be an auxiliary ecclesia in another, since each (re-)establishment has its own traditions. The central ecclesia is represented by the Prophet-in-Council
  • the auxiliary ecclesiae - these represent the same truth as the central ecclesia, but do so in the form of an another tradition.
  • the derogative ecclesiae - whereas the auxiliary ecclesiae accept all the same teachings, in doctrine and morals, as the central ecclesia, yet express those teachings in a different form, the derogative ecclesiae do not accept certain of the teachings of the central and auxiliary ecclesiae. However, that which they do not accept - their derogations - is precisely defined in their agreement with the central ecclesia; everything apart from those derogations, they accept
  • the federative ecclesiae - these are in a similar situation to the derogative ecclesiae; the difference is, the derogative ecclesia default to a position of agreement with the central ecclesia, and then exclude certain specific areas of disagreement with the central ecclesia; the federative ecclesiae default to a position of non-agreement with the central ecclesia, and then have certain specific areas of agreement with the central ecclesia. The derogative ecclesiae accept all the teachings of the central ecclesia, except those they specifically derogate from; the federative ecclesiae accept none of the teachings of the central ecclesia, except those they specifically agree with.
  • the prefederative ecclesiae - these are all other religious groups, that have not entered into any agreement with the central ecclesia. They may be participating in negotiations for such an agreement, or these negotiations may not yet have begun.

Together, the five divisions of ecclesia constitute the flotilla of the most holy Cause.

There are also acknowledged the independent Tuterlarian eclessiae and independent Subtutelarian ecclesiae, which worship one or more of the tutelary deities of the five sacred animal tribes, or a subtutelary deity of a subtribe, apart from the central ecclesia (the holy Maratrean Ecclesia). Thus we have for instance the independent Bacunians, the independent Trincanians, the independent Tabanians, etc. These independent ecclesiae encompass a spectrum of ecclesiae categories, from the auxiliary to the prefederative.

The chief institutions of the ecclesia are:

  • the Prophet, who is the leader of the Maratrean religion
  • the holy Council, who advises the Prophet, and acts as a check upon them, to prevent them from going astray
  • the Appointed Successor, who is appointed by the Prophet-in-Council to succeed the Prophet upon the later's death, resignation or permanent incapacitation. They are a member ex officio of the Council.
  • the High Priestess, who is the chief sacredotal officer of the central ecclesia, and a member ex officio of the Council. There may also be appointed a chief priest

The Prophet and the Council together issue decrees of the Prophet-in-Council, which form the legislation of the Maratrean religion. The Prophet and the Council derive their power from working together; their individual powers, without the consent of the other, are limited.

Establishment

The establishment is the structure established by Maratreans to implement the economic principle, which states that a Maratrean ought, in all economic matters, give preference to dealings with fellow Maratreans over non-Maratreans. This includes such matters as purchasing goods or services, seeking employment or employees, etc. The obligation is not absolute - if it is impractible to deal with a Maratrean - such that no Maratrean can provide that good or service or skill, or cannot do so at a reasonable price - then the obligation does not apply.

One of the instruments of the establishment is the guilds, which are societies of all Maratrean initiates in a particular profession. A guild is in some ways like a trade union or a professional society - it tries to represent the interests of its members in practical matters. At the same time, it also provides an opportunity for Maratreans to have fellowship with fellow Maratreans in the same profession. Another instrument is that of the enterprises, which are business ventures operated as part of the Maratrean establishment, and run in accordance with its principles.

Another important aspect of the establishment is the Custodians, who are trustees to whom Maratreans are encouraged to transfer their property, to hold it on their behalf and on behalf of all Maratreans. This helps protect their assets against the predatory actions of creditors, taxation agencies, and plantiffs.

Empire

Represents the Maratrean political system. In the earliest phases, this is to be implemented as a "state within a state", erected within the rotting shells of the worldly states. The progressive implementation of Empire has four phases:

  • the primordial phase, is prior to the erection of the Maratrean establishment. It consists of era of protoprophecy, and then the erection of the Maratrean ecclesia.
  • the preliminary phase corresponds to the erection of the Maratrean establishment, its protection through legal measures such as trusts and incorporated bodies, and the use of the law of arbitration to implement the legal principle (a Maratrean ought not turn outside their religion for the settlement of disputes with fellows of their own religion, but should turn to the resources of their own religion to settle these disputes, and submit them to be decided in accordance with the laws of the Maratrean religion).
  • next comes the phase of true Zionism, the creation of a separate Maratrean homeland. Unlike false Zionism, which is widely and rightly condemned, true Zionists have not decided beforehand on any particular homeland - much less one already occupied by another people. The Maratrean homeland shall be established wherever it shall be established; its previous inhabitants shall be dealt with in a peaceful and consensual manner, by voluntary purchase rather than theft or compulsory acquisition. (One might suggest that a country like Australia or Canada has more than enough land to fit a Maratrean homeland within it - say on some island off its coast somewhere - but anywhere practicable will do.)
  • in the final, eschatological phase, the Maratrean homeland expands to incorporate the entirety of the earth under one system of government.

The eschatological phase can be subdivided into successive subphases as follows:

  • the progress of the cause - the growth of the Cause to encompass ever greater spiritual territory
  • the conquest of the cause - the growth of the Cause to encompass ever greater temporal territory
  • first triumph - the temporal triumph of the Cause over all its enemies, in which the entirety of the inhabited universe comes under the control of the cause
  • second triumph - the spiritual triumph of the Cause over all its enemies, in which every person in the universe embraces Maratreanism, and attains the great enlightenment
  • the end of all things - in which the universe ceases to exist

This is the noble task with which every Maratrean is charged - to serve in Her Cause of the Final End, to bring about the end of all things - to be Her instrument, in bringing about the destruction of the entire universe. But the universe will be destroyed, not in violence, but in peace; not in agony, but in joy; and all things must end, but to begin again.

The first and second subphases (progress and conquest) coexist. Progress begins in the primordial phase and continues until second triumph. Conquest begins in the phase of true Zionism, and continues until first triumph.

Sacred Animals

The Maratrean definition of animal differs from the standard scientific definition; the definitions differ as the concerns motivating each definition differ. For Maratreanism, the chief question is to determine our ethical obligations; which depend chiefly on whether something has a soul. Therefore Maratreanism recognizes three categories:

  • humanoids and sacred animals - those who have souls, and thus may not be killed nor eaten nor be used for clothing or shelter or so forth. (Humanoids includes both human beings, and alien lifeforms who possess a similar level of development.)
  • unsacred animals - those who lack souls, but nonetheless resemble those who possess souls to a significant extent
  • non-animals - those which do not even resemble things possessing souls, that is the non-animals.

Using this categorisation, certain things which by the scientific definition are animals, are not so by the Maratrean definition - such as shellfish (oysters, mussells, etc.). From a Maratrean perspective, an oyster is a plant. (This does not make Maratreanism contrary to science; it is entirely possible to accept differing and contrary definitions of the same words for different purposes - the context will determine which definition is being used.)

There are five tribes of sacred animals, each of which is governed by an associated tutelary deity:

  • the canine tribe - tutelary deity, the holy lord Bacu - the dog who is a god, the god who is a dog, the divine canine. This tribe also incorporates wolves, foxes, bats.[1]
  • the feline tribe - tutelary deity, the holy lord Trinca - the cat who is a goddess, the goddess who is a cat, the divine feline. This tribe includes lions, tigers, cheetahs, pumas, etc.[2]
  • the equine tribe - tutelary deity, the holy lord Harpa - the horse who is a god, the god who is a horse, the divine equine. This tribe also incorporates donkeys, mules, zebras, camels.[3]
  • the monkey tribe - tutelary deity, the holy lord Muna - the monkey who is a god, the god who is a monkey. This tribe incorporates monkeys, chimpanzees, gorillas, orangutangs, baboons, lemurs, etc.[4]
  • the sea-mammal tribe - tutelary deity, the holy lord Delvina - the dolphin who is a goddess, the goddess who is a dolphin. This tribe incorporates dolphins, porpoises, whales, orcas, walruses, seals.[5]

There are also subsidary deities, the subtutelaries, who rule not an entire tribe but rather a subtribe. In particular we must here mention the holy lord Taba - the bat who is a god, the god who is a bat. Taba is a faithful servant of Bacu.[6]

Other Deities

Other deities acknowledged in Maratreanism include:

  • the goddessess Buna (the Dawn goddess), Cresa (the Rain goddess), and Nuda (the Night goddess). Their annual festivals are known as Bunema, Cresema and Nudema, respectively
  • the tutelaries of the gendered roots - Melana, goddess of the female gendered root; and Hauzenpot, god of the male gendered root
  • the captain of the spirits of the Cause - Navaletus

Ethics

There are three chief divisions of ethics: meta-ethics (which asks what is the nature of ethical statements), normative ethics (which asks what are the fundamental principles of ethics), and applied ethics (which seeks to apply those principles to concrete situations). Maratrean ethical theory extends across all three divisions.

Maratrean meta-ethics sees ethics as being objective, and as forming part of a single unified axiology (system of valuation) and deontology (system of oughtness) which incorporates ethics, aesthetics and rationality as equal and equally objective components. It sees ethical properties as non-natural, and as knowable through a sense of axiological intuition - which is common to all humans, although some possess it more strongly and accurately than others. All axiology is a reflection of the axiological perfection of Maratrea's own nature.

Maratrean normative ethics believes in taking into account the inherent nature of an act, its consequences, and the motivations, intentions, disposition, attitudes or character which produce it. Unlike some other ethical systems, which want to make one of these factors paramount, Maratrean ethics sees all three as equally important.

In applied ethics, Maratreanism presents a comprehensive range of ethical views.

Dietary laws

The most important rule of a Maratrean diet, is that it is prohibited to eat the meat of any sacred animal. That means no dog meat, no cat meat, no horse meat, no camel meat, no whale meat, no dolphin meat, no seal meat, and so on and so forth.

Furthermore, a Maratrean is not permitted to hunt, nor kill animals for food. But a Maratrean may eat animals killed for them by non-Maratreans. (In an emergency situation, this rule may be disregarded if necessary for survival.)

A major concern for any Maratrean must be with products which do not reveal their full ingredients on the packaging. Although products are legally required to list ingredients, their listings are often very broad and ambiguous. For example, "meat" (which meat?), "animal oil" (which animal?), "animal fat" (which animal?), "flavourings" (what is that? it could be anything). The concern here is that the product could contain the meat of sacred animals. Even if, in some societies, that is unlikely as a practical matter, we do not want to take any risks. And who would want to eat food if one does not know exactly what is in it?

Thus, there are Maratrean certified foods, certified by the Maratrean Food Authority. Maratrean certified foods must meet the following requirements:

  • they must publicly disclose all of their ingredients, without any vagueness or ambiguity - although the Authority has discretion to dispense with this requirement for specialist gourmet food, if it believes it would be in the interest of Maratreanism to do so, and if the producer discloses publicly every species of animal from which the food is produced
  • they must be free from the meat of sacred animals
  • any animal products must be produced by an abattoir certified not to employ any Maratreans, and not to be owned by Maratreans, nor to have come from a farm owned by Maratreans or which employs Maratreans, nor transported prior to slaughter by Maratreans - although all these activities are prohibited to Maratreans by Maratrean law, no Maratrean wishes to be in a situation of encouraging or condoning other Maratreans from complying with Maratrean law
  • they comply with the economic principle - certification will only be granted to products produced by a non-Maratrean firm if there is no Maratrean firm producing a reasonably equivalent product at a reasonably equivalent price
  • any milk used in the product was produced from free-range animals (cows, goats, sheep, etc.), that are allowed to live out their natural lifespan after the end of their productive milking lives
  • any eggs used in the product was produced from free-range animals (chickens, quails, etc.), that are allowed to live out their natural lifespan after the end of their productive egg-laying lives
  • the product was produced in compliance with environmental and animal welfare best practice
  • none of the meat in the product comes from animals subjected to Kosher or Halal slaughtering

A Maratrean must endeavour to eat only Maratrean certified foods where available. However, where they are unavailable, they may eat what food is available, provided they refrain from all products known to contain the meat of sacred animals. When certified Maratrean foods are available, one is required to eat them in one's own home; but when a guest in another's home, one may eat what they provide, so long as it is not known to contain the meat of sacred animals. If restaurants serving Maratrean certified food are available, one must choose such a restaurant over one that does not; however, when dining with non-Maratreans, one may eat in restaurants that do not serve Maratrean certified food, even if a restaurant serving Maratrean certified food is available.

Practices

Calendar and chronology

The year 2013 in the common era chronology (CE) corresponds to the year 34013 in the Maratrean era (ME) chrnology. However, since the Maratrean New Year is not at the exact same time as the Gregorian calendar New Year, there can be a difference of a year for dates near the beginning/end of the year.

In the Maratrean calendar, common years are 364 days long, and leap years are 371. Leap years are distributed according to a 400 year cycle, there being 71 leap years and 329 common years in every 400 Maratrean years. The following table details the months of the Maratrean calendar:

# Name Days
1 Capricorn 28
2 Aquarius 35
3 Pisces 28
4 Aries 28
5 Taurus 35
6 Gemini 28
7 Cancer 28
8 Leo 35
9 Virgo 28
10 Libra 28
11 Scorpio 35
12 Sagittarius 28 (common year) or 35 (leap year)

The Maratrean week begins on Monday and ends on Sunday. The first day of every Maratrean month is Monday, and the last day of every Maratrean month is Sunday. The following table details the Maratrean week:

# English Name Maratrean Name Planetary body Sacred animal tutelary Symbolizes
1 Monday Lunade the Moon Bacu being of the many worlds
2 Tuesday Marde Mars Trinca
3 Wednesday Mercurade Mercury Harpa
4 Thursday Jovade Jupiter Muna
5 Friday Venerade Venus Delvina
6 Saturday Saturnade Saturn (none) establishment, progress, assumption, conquest and triumphs of the most holy Cause
7 Sunday Solade the Sun three Sabbaths at the beginning-end of time

Temples and shrines

There is a distinction between a:

  • great temple - this is the chief temple of the Maratrean religion; there may be only one at a time
  • temple - a great edifice erected for the glory of Maratrea
  • shrine - a smaller edifice devoted to the worship of Maratrea; could range from very small to moderate-sized

In addition to the temples and shrines of Maratrea, there may also be established:

  • temples and shrines of the various other Maratrean deities - such as the sacred animal tutelaries, the gendered roots, the goddesses Buna, Cresa and Nuda, etc.
  • temples and shrines of auxiliary ecclesiae (which may be known by different names more appropriate to the tradition upon which they are based)

Sacraments

Sacraments of Maratreanism include:

  • initiation - the sacrament by which one becomes a Maratrean
  • enamouration - the sacrament which celebrates those bonds of love which foretell and remember the union of souls. This is the Maratrean equivalent to marriage, but it is not marriage, but from a Maratrean viewpoint something far superior
  • cakes and wine - this is the chief sacrament of Maratreanism. The sweet cakes symbolize the nourishment of divine favour; the wine symbolizes the joy of blessedness. By the miracle of transubstantation/transignification, the earthly cakes are transformed in their inner spiritual essence in heavenly cakes, and the earthly wine into heavenly wine, even as it retains its outer form.
  • ordination - the rite of ordination as a priestess or priest
  • enfuneration - the sacrament by which is celebrated the commendation of the dead unto the heavenly realms. It is celebrated, not for the benefit of the dead - who have no need of it - but for the benefit of the living

Priesthood

Maratreanism accepts both priestesses and priests.

The chief of the Maratrean priesthood is the High Priestess, an office restricted only to women. There may however also be a chief priest, which is a subordinate office restricted only to men, and is the highest-ranked priest. The restriction of the office of High Priestess to women only is a reflection of the belief that motherhood is a better metaphor than fatherhood for Maratrea's relationship to us. (It must be noted that the highest office of Maratreanism over all, the office of Prophet, is open to women and men equally.)

Auxiliary ecclesiae

We acknowledge what is good in all the great spiritual traditions. We believe that all these traditions began in the truth, even though they have since fallen from their original glory. Thus we believe, not in rejecting them, but in restoring them to that original glory.

The traditions all contain error and falsehood; even so, none is entirely devoid of truth and goodness. The precise mix of truth and falsehood varies from tradition to tradition, and can vary also between different expressions of the same tradition. We wish to keep all that is good and truthful, while putting aside all that is in error.

Many people have a deep emotional connection to one of these traditions. The pursuit of spiritual truth does not require them to cast aside this connection. Truth can be expressed in the terms of their tradition, using the symbols and language to which they are attached; or they can put aside their tradition, and seek fresh ways of expressing the truth. This we leave entirely to the freedom of each individual, and their own wishes; only they know what is best for them in this matter. For those who seek the truth in fresh and new forms, there is the Holy Maratrean Ecclesia; for those who seek the truth in the form of a familiar tradition, there are Auxiliary Ecclesiae.

The Auxiliary Ecclesiae express the same truth as is taught by the Holy Maratrean Ecclesia, but in the terms of a particular existing tradition. Their clergy are initiated Maratreans, but their individual members need or need not be. The general authority of the Maratrean Ecclesia has the power to charter Auxiliary Ecclesiae as needed.

Membership in the auxiliary ecclesiae is not exclusive - one may be a member of as many as one wishes at once. But within the bounds of the practice of each, one may not mix their practices, to enable each to retain their distinct identity and integrity.

The auxiliary ecclesiae express the whole truth of the holy cause through the restoration of an existing tradition to its original glory of truth, whether that originality be understood in explicitly chronological terms, or as truth always preceeds falsehood.

An initiate of the chief vessel is required to believe in the truth of the teaching of the Prophets and the Scriptures of that vessel; they are free to believe or believe not in the Prophets and Scriptures of the auxiliary ecclesiae as they feel fit, but even if they believe them not, let them speak respectfully thereof. And a member of an auxiliary ecclesia is not required to believe in the Prophets and Scriptures of the chief vessel, but must be respectful thereof, and also of those of the other ecclesiae. But a member of an auxiliary ecclesia must believe in the Prophets and Scriptures of their own auxiliary ecclesia, and if they be of the clergy thereof, of the chief vessel also, since to be clergy of an auxiliary ecclesia it is necessary to be both a member of that auxiliary ecclesia and also an initiate of the chief vessel.

Footnotes

  1. A worshipper of Bacu is known as a Bacunian, and the worship of the Bacunians is collectively known as Bacunianism. A Bacunian is also known as a Bacunianist, and hence Bacunians are also known as Bacunianists; but sometimes instead it is called Bacuism, hence Bacuist, Bacuists.
  2. A worshipper of Trinca is known as a Trincanian, and the worship of the Trincanians is collectively known as Trincanianism. A Trincanian is also known as a Trincanianist, and hence Trincanians are also known as Trincanianists; but sometimes instead it is called Trincaism, hence Trincaist, Trincaists.
  3. A worshipper of Harpa is known as a Harpanian, and the worship of the Harpanians is collectively known as Harpanianism. A Harpanian is also known as a Harpanianist, and hence Harpanians are also known as Harpanianists; but sometimes instead it is called Harpaism, hence Harpaist, Harpaists.
  4. A worshipper of Muna is known as a Munanian, and the worship of the Munanians is collectively known as Munanianism. A Munanian is also known as a Munanianist, and hence Munanians are also known as Munanianists; but sometimes instead it is called Munaism, hence Munaist, Munaists.
  5. A worshipper of Delvina is known as a Delvinian, and the worship of the Delvinians is collectively known as Delvinianism. A Delvinian is also known as a Delvinianist, and hence Delvinians are also known as Delvinianists; but sometimes instead it is called Delvinaism, hence Delvinaist, Delvinaists.
  6. A worshipper of Taba is known as a Tabanian, and the worship of the Tabanians is collectively known as Tabanianism. A Tabanian is also known as a Tabanianist, and hence Tabanians are also known as Tabanianists; but sometimes instead it is called Tabaism, hence Tabaist, Tabaists.
Comments