Above is a painting done by my late sister titled ‘Story Teller’. Christine was a good story teller, as was Rosemary and myself. This gift ran in the family. What is astounding, is, that the ghost writer Stacey Pierrot hired, claims there exist very few of Christine Rosamond’s words, and thus Tom snyder does not include but a handful. This contradicts what Pierrot said in 1997, that Christine was dictating her life story to Sanda Faulkner. If there exist words by the Rose of the World, then Pierrot can not now proudce them lest she be titled a ‘Story Teller’. I laugh!
Story Teller can be titled ‘Kundry and the Flower Maidens’. Kundry is depicted as a Mary Magdalene, who in turn is depicted as a Grail Lineage from Jesus that begat a royal and divine race. Kundry is called ‘The Rose of Hades’ a name that can be applied to Orpheus and his wife, Eurydice. The photograph of Rena Christiansen, that was used for a Oktoberfest poster at the University of Nebraska, would make a excellent Kundry. Indeed, Rena and her boyfriend engaged in the black arts, which I would push out of her being atop a mountain.
Rena is the Silent Muse of Christine Rosamond, daughter of Rosemary, granddaughter of Maryly Magdalene Rosamond. Yesterday I had lunch with Marilyn Reed who has agreed to help raise Rosamond’s Creative Legacy from hell. She will help sell Rosamond’s images of beautiful women for my two nieces, and act as my agent in seeking a publisher and a producer of a great story – that needs to be told!
Members of the Rosemond family in Holland were Swan Brethren. Lohengrin was a Knight of the Swan. His father, Parsifal, encounters Kundry and the Flower Maidens who hold the secret of the Grail that is needed to save King Arthur’s kingdom. Christine and I were Flower Children.
I have been on the bus!
It is in her winter aspect that Eriu appears in the story of Niall, and it is in her spring aspect that she appears in the tale of Conn, in which she offers the hero drink from a golden cup.
Herodias, Magdalen and Prakriti
ike the young Parsifal, the wild woman has many names. The many elements in Wagner’s Kundry included another archetype found in literature from the Middle Ages onwards: the Wandering Jew. In Wagner’s poem, Kundry becomes a reincarnation of Herodias who, because she had laughed at the Saviour’s suffering, was cursed to wander through the world until His return. She is not only cursed to wander, but also always to tell the truth; and she cannot weep, only laugh her accursed laugh. Another Herodias can be found in Heine’s poem Atta Troll; this former princess of Judea does not wander the world, but rides, laughing, with the Wild Hunt across the sky. She appears as a cruel rose in Mallarmé’s Les fleurs
n her Cambridge Handbook, Lucy Beckett entirely misses the point of the Herodias reference, but makes an interesting observation about the reference to Mary Magdalen. Beckett reminds us that in 1848 Wagner had sketched a scenario for a play called Jesus of Nazareth, which includes a scene in which the penitent Magdalen kneels in repentance before Jesus on the shore of Lake Gennesareth; later in the play she was to anoint his head and wash his feet, just as Kundry does toward Parsifal in the opera. Although Wagner repeatedly denied that Parsifal was a Christ- figure (I never gave the Saviour a thought, he said), this image had stayed with him and was incorporated by him into the Good Friday scene.
n Die Sieger, an opera that Wagner never completed, a chaste young man called Ananda receives into the religious community a beautiful girl called Prakriti, who has passionately loved him; but Shakyamuni, the future Buddha persuades him to renounce her. The Buddha reveals that in an earlier incarnation, Prakriti had rejected, with mocking laughter, the love of a young man. Prakriti is a parallel to Mary Magdalen in the sense that both are outcasts. By absorbing these two outcast women, in their different ways excluded and despised by patriarchal societies, who by their associations with the Buddha and Christ respectively introduce further religious iconography to Wagner’s drama, Kundry gained a further dimension
Arise! Arise! To me!
Your master calls you, nameless one,
First she-devil! Rose of Hades!
Herodias were you, and what else?
Gundryggia then, Kundry here!
Come here! Come here now, Kundry!
Your master calls: arise!
e triumphant youth finds himself in a wondrous garden, surrounded by beautiful and seductive Flower-maidens. They call to him and entwine themselves about him while chiding him for wounding their lovers (“Komm, komm, holder Knabe!”). They soon fight and bicker amongst themselves to win his singular devotion, to the point that he is about flee, but then a voice calls out, “Parsifal!” He now recalls this name is what his mother used when appearing in his dreams. The Flower-maidens back away from him and call him a fool as they leave Parsifal and Kundry alone.
He wonders if this Garden is a dream and asks how it is that Kundry knows his name. Kundry tells him she learned it from his mother (“Ich sah das Kind an seiner Mutter Brust.”), who had loved him and tried to shield him from his father’s fate; the mother he had abandoned and who had finally died of grief. She reveals many parts of Parsifal’s history to him and he is stricken with remorse, blaming himself for his mother’s death. He thinks himself very stupid to have forgotten her. Kundry says this realization is a first sign of understanding and that, with a kiss, she can help him understand his mother’s love. As they kiss Parsifal suddenly recoils in pain and cries out Amfortas’ name: he feels the wounded king’s pain burning in his own side, and now understands Amfortas’ passion during the Grail Ceremony (“Amfortas! Die Wunde! Die Wunde!”) Filled with this compassion, Parsifal rejects Kundry.
Furious that her ploy has failed, Kundry tells Parsifal that if he can feel compassion for Amfortas, then he can feel compassion for her as well. She has been cursed for centuries, unable to rest, because she saw the Savior on the cross and laughed. Now she can never weep, only laugh, and she is enslaved to Klingsor as well. Parsifal rejects her again but then asks her to lead him to Amfortas. She begs him to stay with her for just one hour, and then she will lead him to Amfortas. When he still refuses, she curses him to wander without ever finding the Kingdom of the Grail, and finally she calls on her master to help her.
Klingsor appears and throws the Spear at Parsifal but it stops in midair, above his head. Parsifal takes it and makes the sign of the Cross. The castle crumbles and as he leaves the scene, he tells Kundry that she knows where she can find him again.
Unicorn tapestries, tarot trumps, medieval watermarks and numerous paintings contain symbols that point directly to the “Great Secret” – the Heresy of the Holy Grail – discussed at length in The Woman with the Alabaster Jar (Bear and Company, 1993).
It is these fossils lodged in the art and literature of the Middle Ages that were the vessels of the heresy, amazingly resilient in the face of adversity and suppression. The Great Secret survived with incredible tenacity because the truth of the Sacred Union that imaged the Divine as partners was rooted in the Scriptures themselves, affirmed by legend and lore and cherished in the hearts of the people.
It has now resurfaced at the threshold of the third millennium Domini, most recently in The Da Vinci Code that cites Holy Blood, Holy Grail and The Woman with the Alabaster Jaras two of its major sources of inspiration for Magdalene’s story.
In reclaiming Magdalene as the “chalice” of the sangraal,we reclaim the Sacred Partnership set at the very heart of the Christian story, “the cornerstone the builders rejected.”
Let us build the “kingdom of God” with this as the foundation stone for a new dispensation of inclusive and egalitarian principles that embrace the entire human family – “in memory of her.”
It appears that the noble intentions of the Grail Company in the Western world are intimately linked to the central Buddhist tradition of the far East.
The Flemish Connection
As noted in the previous lesson, with the passing of the Grail to Lohengrin, the legend shifts to Flanders — in modern terms, the Benelux countries, Belgium, Netherlands, and Luxembourg. Wolfram sets up this part of the story by a careful orchestration of dynastic links. Prince Kaylet of Castile, a cousin of Parzival´s father Gahmuret, rejected a young woman named Elize. During the great tournament where Gahmuret met Herzeloyde, Elize was claimed by a knight from Flanders, Duke Lambekin of Brabant and Hainaut. Elize was a Gascon princess from the border of France and Spain, across from Castilia. Her marriage with Duke Lambekin formed a dynastic link between Gascon-Castilia region and Flanders.
From the Middle Ages onward there were close ties between Spain and the Lowlands. In fact, Flanders was for a time under Spanish rule. Flemish soldiers who visited Spain during the rule of Hapsburg Emperor Charles V (Charles I of Spain, reigned 1516 – 56) became known for their physical largeness and crude manners. The soldiers were considered to be “roughhouses” or “road house” types. When Spanish gypsies emerged as a distinct class in the 18th Century, they were observed to have a similar style, a roadhouse or rowdy manner. The local populace loosely applied the racial term (an insult, really) for the soldiers — Flamencos, “Flemings” — to the gypsies and, by extension, to their wild, outrageous manner of dancing. So it came about that the Andalucian art of Flamenco, to many people the very signature of Spain, is called by a Flemish name.
The Flemish connection figures centrally in the story of Lohengrin, the Swan Knight. After Parzival renounced the kingship of the Grail, he gave some special instructions to his son who proceeded to Hainaut and Brabant, following the dynastic link to which Wolfram alludes: the marriage of Princess Alize to Duke Lambekin.
At the end of the 12th century, Wolfram drew the elements of the Grail story in part from the unfinished work of Chretien de Trois. The town of Trois is in the province of Champagne in France, southwest of the Lowlands (a car journey of about five hours). Chretien was known to have composed the Grail story for his patron, Philipe of Flanders, as things were done in those times. Interestingly, the literary provenance of the Grail story links it to the Lowlands at the close of the 12th Century, between 1185 and 1206, and the actual historical events that reflect the story also point to this region, but two centuries earlier. Lotharingia or Lorraine originally extended northward into the Lowlands (Lower Lotharingia) and southward into Alsace (Upper Lotharingia). I presume the key moment of Parzival´s quest to have been 968 CE, and the time of Lohengrin to have been the end of the 10th Century, around 985 CE. Specific celestial designs signal these moments.