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|Posté le: Dim Nov 04, 2007 10:38 pm Sujet du message: The Mythos of the Order of Her Sacred Rose
|The Mythos of the Holy and Chivalrous Order of Her Sacred Rose: Origin of the Order
It was after the death and rising of Christos, and the subsequent withdrawal of the Apostles from Jerusalem, that they met in a hidden meeting place to discuss the future of the Holy Church, what they had seen, and what actions they should take. Many of them separated to go their own ways, a few of them in groups of two, many alone, determined to spread the old word of Aristotle in its true form, and the new word of Joshua Christos among it.
This is the story of part of one such journey, that of Calandra, and her companion, Bertilde.
Chapter One: A Chance Encounter
And so it was that the wanderings of Calandra, spreading the word of the Aristotelian Church, led her back in the direction of Jerusalem. Wounds of the mind and spirit still fresh, she almost obeyed her thoughts to turn away, leave the city unto itself. She knew this to be wrong and so proceeded on into the city, hoping that she would not be recognized and persecuted, but knowing Jah’s will would direct her and prevail regardless.
It was on the road still several measures from the city that she came across a woman weeping at the base of a tree. With compassion in her heart Calandra approached the woman, she saw about her body bruises and abrasions common to one who has endured the torment of an aggressor upon their body. Calandra’s heart wholly went out to the young woman now, without even asking, she knelt down and embraced her tightly, holding strong against any resistance.
It was only once the sobbing had ceased that Calandra felt strong enough to release the young woman. She looked her up and down, this woman was strong and lean, there is no way she was taken without retaliation, she must have fought and lost to her attacker. She looked up into the woman’s face, despite the dirt stained tear tracks down her cheeks, she saw nothing but defiance and passion in her eyes.
“Tell me, child, what are you called?” Calandra asked.
The reply came, “I am called Publia Iulia Velina, I thank you mother, for your embrace.”
“Tell me, who has done these terrible things to you? Why are you cast out into the land, wearing not but rags? And how can I further assist you?” the longing to help was more than Calandra could resist, she shifted to sit beside the young woman and kept her body next to hers to share warmth against the coming night.
Publia turned to look more directly at Calandra, “I was… unwelcome among a certain element in town, I was told I was unwanted and beaten… and taken… against my will, then cast out like refuse, into the street. What little I have to wear I was forced to acquire from the back alleys and trash bins of Jerusalem. The people are not kind given recent happenings.
“As to how you can help me, mother, you already have. I can ask no more of you.”
Calandra pulled the woman tighter to her bosom, letting her rest her head upon her shoulder. “Then you will come with me, as my child, and my peer. And we shall find shelter there in the lights of the city.”
That night the two walked together back into Jerusalem and found shelter at an inn on the outskirts of town.
Chapter Two: The Days of Jerusalem
And so it was that the two spent their days about Jerusalem. Publia’s wounds healed, she obtained more modest clothing, and obtained a hard wooden staff, which she used to walk about the city on their daily constitutionals and tasks. Calandra sometimes worried about the staff, for Publia walked without effort, but it was not her place to question the motives of her companion and friend.
The two wandered the city each day, to a new and different place each time. Calandra teached the ways of the Aristotelian Church, and while the people did listen, so too did Publia, while also seeming ever vigilant. So it was that Publia became a true and faithful believer in the ways of Christos and Aristotle, and so did Calandra’s concern grow for her friend.
It was late in the afternoon one day, the pair had just received a blessing of food from a group they had just attended to, bread and corn, simple… but all that was needed, and they were traveling through an alleyway that would shorten the journey by a half measure of time, when Calandra spoke, “Publia, you are a professed believer, why do you not allow me to baptize you, as you have seen me do to others?”
“Would you no longer allow me as you companion if I refused baptism?” came the reply.
“No, of course not, you are my friend as well, and I would be lesser without you.”
“Can I not travel with you, knowing I am a believer of the Faith and the Church, but unbaptized?” Publia asked another question.
Calandra, blessed with an abundance of wisdom and passion answered, “But why refuse when you know it to be the next step of assurance of Faith, and required to ascend to the Sun upon your death? If you do not doubt your faith, the way I know you not to doubt, why deny yourself this act?”
“Because the path to Jah, whether through Aristotle’s reason, or Christo’s Faith is a journey of the self, until such a point as one enters the Friendship. It is my own path to walk, and I have not yet arrived at the point to make that choice in my own life. I am not denying myself… I am ensuring my motives,” answered Publia with knowledge beyond her years.
With that they entered their room at the inn, and prepared their meal. They ate only what was required to quiet their stomachs and then wrapped the rest in soft cloths to break fast on the morrow. The night came slowly for the pair that night, as they wondered of each other’s minds and thoughts, but the darkness did indeed swallow them and rested them for the day coming where they would need it.
Chapter Three: Of Thunder and Lightening
There came a day that started like any other… the treebirds singing, a slow, lazy wind from the west, and the sun entering the room, awakening the pair for another day. They prepared as usual, they dressed, they ate a soggy cornmeal, Calandra prepared her teachings, and Publia prepared her staff. All was normal within their part of the world, but all would not be the same by its close.
The pair entered the streets of Jerusalem once again, this time to proceed to a square they had been invited to by the local merchants, to teach the word while the people shopped for their food for the day. As the two entered the square, several things escaped the notice of Calandra, but not the eyes of Publia. There was a decided lack of a crowd, the people that were there seemed on edge ready to spring, but to Calandra’s credit, as one of the Spiritual world and she did not notice and began to conduct her teaching.
Publia was on edge, but did not display it as to avoid unease of her friend and companion. She tightened her hands about her staff to be ready for any event that may occur. Calandra began speaking on the idea that the Holy Being is Almighty, as Publia proceeded to fall back into the crowd.
It was then that a group of Roman soldiers entered the market and approached Calandra, many kept their hands at their sides, or folded across their chests, but the Centurion approached her himself, hands upon his sword. The day had become cloudy and the winds harder, but the sun still shown enough to glint off the Roman’s armor and into her eyes. Quickly she looked about, but could see Publia nowhere; in fact many of the peoples of the city had dispersed to avoid confrontation.
The lead Roman spoke, malice and contempt in his voice, “You people have already once been chased from this place. You are not welcome. You are a rebel against the Empire, here to drive a wedge between it and its people. You were left alone to allow you to leave of your own volition, but now it is too late, you will be punished for your crimes.”
Calandra was struck speechless, after the happenings after the death of Christos, she was sure that the people’s minds and will had changed. It appeared as though they had not, thought she had never sensed her presence to be unwelcome, perhaps she was ignorant of the world more than she realized. Unable to see any other way out of the situation, and apparently abandoned, she prepared for the worst and held out her hands to be bound by the Centurion.
It was then that the first strike of lightening came; it signaled the coming of the rain, and simultaneously the coming of the blow from Publia’s staff to the arms of the Roman leader as he reached for Calandra. Another quick blow to the side of his helmet dropped the man to his knees as well into the grasp of unconsciousness. A few of his soldiers ran forward to catch him and more than one moved their arms to their weapons.
Publia spoke with intensity unknown to Calandra, “You will cease and desist now! You will take your leader and retire back to your barracks and report that you were unable to find us! You will allow us to return to our room, pack our things, and leave this city without interference! “
Calandra thought that her companion spoke with the voice of one used to the role of command. She came to the conclusion that she knew even less about the young woman than she had thought, she would have to inquire further if they survived this encounter. She looked at Publia’s face and saw there the determination and defiance from that first day, and things began to become clearer.
The Romans seemed to have a semblance of familiarity on their faces, as if they recognized their leader’s attacker. They lifted the man upon their shoulders, removed hands from their sheaths and slowly backed away from the pair. As they approached the exit to the square they turned and left.
“Mother, you must trust me, we must depart. I will answer all your questions later, for now we must move urgently, “Publia’s voice was softer now.
With trust and willingness Calandra followed her friend back to the inn, where they did pack their things and depart the city immediately. They proceeded away, without looking back, without slowing, and without hesitation. Several nights and days passed before Publia would allow them to come to a stop, rest, and speak once more.
Chapter Four: Truth, Baptism, and Foundations
Around a camp fire the two sat, cross-legged and comfortable beneath the canopy of a grove of trees beside the road. They ate the remnants of bread and corn that they had managed to take with them from Jerusalem. Together they sat, but after recent events, they both felt alone.
“We must stop at a town soon, to restock our food,” said Calandra, avoiding the question at the fore front of her mind.
“Ask, what you need to ask,” replied Publia knowingly.
Calandra let the thoughts of her mind burst forth from her mouth, “Why did you deceive me for so long? Who are you? What are your intentions with me?”
“Mother, know that I never lied to you, everything I did had its own purpose, including not telling you certain elements of my past. I’m sorry you feel hurt by this fact, but I did as I felt I must. I am Publia Iulia Velina; former Centurion of the group we faced in Jerusalem, the man that led them was the one that stripped me of my honor, my pride, and my virtue. My intentions remain the same, to follow you, mother, and protect you how and when I am able.”
Clandra was forced to pause for a moment, food turned to ash in her mouth, and she now knew what her purpose was in the city. It was not just a test of her courage and commitment, but she was sent to receive and save this young woman as well. Jah’s will did indeed take shape in mysterious ways.
“I am sorry if I distressed you by my actions and thoughts Publia, there is no need to be sorry. It is I who should apologize, how may I serve you?”
“Mother… baptize me.”
And so it was that the Roman Publia was baptized by Calandra, and given the Aristotelian name Bertilde, meaning ‘bright warrior maiden’. She was folded into the growing Friendship of the Church and was pledged to Calandra’s service. The pair conducted the ceremony alone in the desert, presided over and witness by Jah alone.
“As I am unable to carry a weapon, you shall do so, by my side, to protect me from the evils of man’s heart,” declared Calandra, “so too shall I guide us in journey and in spirit so we may reach our goals in the world, and of the mind.”
And so it was that the bond between the speakers and warriors of the Church were formed and bound.
Chapter Five: The Years of Service
For many years after the pair served the Church, always together. Calandra speaking the word of truth among the peoples of many nations, and Bertilde by her side, always vigilant, always protective, always compassionate as an assistant to the clergy of the Church. Word of their companionship spread far and wide among the believers and many of the Apostles, and other Clergy, began emulating their way, and took upon themselves a layperson, many former Roman soldiers.
Bertilde was considered to be the founder of the ideals of service of the warrior to the Church, which she never contested. Many a letter she wrote to her fellow guardians, directing them in the true ways of a soldier for Jah, always proclaiming the warrior virtues, the necessity of service and duty, and that the true path can be found walking in the path behind a member of the clergy. She was undisputed in her teachings for they were always found to be true and pure.
The pair, the companions, were never found far from one another’s side, Calandra was held to the regulations placed before her by Christos, and although Bertilde was not, she did so out of honor of her charge. The years faded, as did their youth, but loneliness never achieved a hold on either’s heart, though pursued by men for marriage Bertilde never did concede. The Friendship can be achieved through means other than marriage, and love can be expressed through means other than that of the flesh.
Eventually the Apostle Titus was declared leader of the Church, and ascended as such in Rome. He was given the title of Pope and the Church flourished. Having never taken a companion warrior himself, but intrigued by the idea, he sent out word to all those who did, to have them proceed to Rome to meet with him and speak of assembling an official doctrine for the provisioning of such as an Order of the Church.
Calandra and Bertilde received the word, and loyally prepared for the coming journey. They received generous donations of food from the people, and promised their return. They were even granted the use of horses by a local noble, who saw the merit in their upcoming venture. And it was that the pair began traveling on a path that would be the last for them to set foot upon together.
Chapter Six: The Last Journey
Before the preparations were made, before even the word to come to Rome came, Calandra knew that Bertilde was not well. Despite her tidings, waving aside her concern, Bertilde insisting on making the journey as it was the Pope and Jah’s will. Calandra swallowed her ill feelings and pressed on assisting her friend and companions in any way that she could.
During the trip her condition only worsened, she was stricken by fever, and cough, her face paled, and her body became cold to the touch. Still she refused to stop and seek any aid; her faith was so much as she knew if it was her time she would be called to Jah’s side regardless. Amazed, despite the miracles she had seen, Calandra could not believe such fortitude and determination.
They made it to the coast of the sea where they bartered for passage on a vessel bound to travel directly to a city on the peninsula very near to Rome. The breeze seemed to be improving Bertilde’s condition and mood. Again lively and witty in conversation with Calandra and the crew of the vessel, worry quickly faded from the minds of others. Her skin returned to its normal color, and she spent many a day on the decks in the wind, sun, and spray of the waters.
Many nights and days passed and then again there was a shore in sight, littered with the dwellings of the Roman Empire. Smiles abound as the crew prepared for their return to land, all that were not already, had been made faithful Aristotelians by Calandra and her teachings, and they could not wait to spread the word themselves. The ship did enter the harbor, and the companions departed their new friends and began to continue their trip toward Rome.
As the trip continued Bertilde began to worsen again, this added both concern to Calandra and time to their destination. It came to the point where the pair could no longer travel at all, but they remained a distance from Rome, but in a small village nearby. They sought shelter in a local dwelling, and Calandra cared for Bertilde for many days.
“Clandra… I fear my service to you, has come to an end,” whispered Bertilde one late night.
“Do not speak such friend, this is but temporary, you will recover again, and we will continue to Rome together.”
“No, mother, it is not to be. I will rest tonight, and on the morrow I will not be able to greet the new day,” continued Bertilde.
Calandra began to weep, unbelieving, but knowing her place was not to know what the coming day would bring, “No, you will be here, and better too, and we will proceed. Rest you shall, so that your strength will return. And I will be here at your side.”
She looked down at her stricken companion, but she was already asleep. She checked to be sure, but it was sleep and not death, she could feel her friend’s breath upon her cheek. Relaxed she laid her head upon Bertilde’s breast and passed into sleep herself.
When morning did come Calandra was devastated, for Bertilde had indeed left this world. Her body peaceful and graceful in its eternal slumber, but tears still slipped from Calandra’s eyes. Saddened, but determined, she called for help to bury Bertilde, as she rightly deserved.
The spot was chosen upon a small hillside covered with sweet, fresh, green grasses. She was placed inside a grave that was dug quickly and quietly by the peoples of the town, and Calandra did preside over it, granting the rights of the funeral to her departed friend. And the earth was replaced over her, to protect her body.
That night Calandra rested fitfully, taking many hours to fall into a slumber. The next day she awoke the cries of the town’s people, unable to understand them she dressed quickly and rushed outside. Upon the hill on which Bertilde was buried the day before, sprouted a magnificent Rose bush, upon the very earth upturned for her grave. Fully grown and beautiful, the impossibility through any means other than miracle descended upon Calandra.
“See this place, the purity of her heart, soul, and very body has caused the earth to send forth fruits. Know this place, protect this place, but never hide this place, be proud that your town was chosen for such a miracle,” she spoke to the people.
She immediately returned to the place she had been staying, gathered up all of their belonging, and began her journey to Rome once more. As she had started the last day mourning, she started this one celebrating, the circle of life more obvious to her now than ever before. And now she was emboldened that the Pope’s declaration to create an Order should be heeded.
Chapter Seven: An Assembly in Rome
Calandra came upon Rome within a day, hastened by purpose and Holy mission. The assembly had begun days before, but indecision was whispered in the halls among various people. Bertilde would be represented at this meeting yet.
Enormous was the disturbance as Calandra forced her way into the hall of meeting for the event, opening the heavy double doors herself. Several of the clergy and their companions arose to see what was the root of the annoyance all silenced when the recognized the Apostle. She rose up the pack that Bertilde had carried with her for years, full of letters, musings, and journals of her thoughts and experiences. Calandra tossed it upon the table, causing the clatter of many things from its weight.
“Here is what you truly seek! Behold the writings of Bertilde, the true founder of what ever Order you create here this day! Be it known that even know her body lays below the ground, with Rose bush sprouting from it this very day! She is with the Lord now, gazing down upon all of you here as you decide the fate of her work and her Faith! Do not discredit her,” Calandra declared.
She then turned and withdrew from the chamber, leaving the creation to people more concerned than her. She returned, as promised, to the people she left and continued her teaching of them. One day she did receive a letter stating the findings of the Pope’s declared assembly, it caused Calandra to smile, and she smiled every day after until her death.
The Order does find these writings to be true, and with good intention does declare them as sacred documents to be respected, and seen as the revelation into its own founding moments. The Order also recognizes the warrior Bertilde to be the first true member, matriarch, and knight of the Order, even though she held no such title in life. Her teachings, through recollection and letter, are preserved to this day and seen as the original guides to the life of one of the Order.
Original text written by Loyats son of Loyats, transcripted in the year 1455
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