FURIES, FATES, AND MUSES
Triple goddesses abound in Indo-European mythology. In the classical world, before there were Nine Muses, there were three, Meditation, Memory and Song. These water nymphs offered inspiration and prophecy in their babbling waters and you will find their "stream of consciousness" flowing throughout Morningstone, from the edge of the hamlet to the cottage, and through the Tomb of Every Hope into Laura's underground grotto and thence into Morgen's sacred pool.
Classical mythology names the three Fates: Clotho, the spinner; Lachesis, the apportioner and Atropos, the inflexible, known respectively as the Present, the Past and the Future. In Norse mythology, they are the Norns, (Urth, the Past; Verthandi, the Present and Skuld, the Future), who tend the roots of Yggdrasill, the world tree. Other examples abound.
The classical Furies; Alecto, Megaera and Tisiphone, are avenging spirits of the triplicated kind. These goddesses of vendetta represent pitiless justice. They especially avenge crimes unaddressed by earthly justice, including crimes against nature or by persons outside the normal jurisdiction of the law, such as heads of state. Morningstone's Furies are more like the Three Morrighans, alternatively known by such names as "the Phantom Queen," "Raven," and "Frenzy," especially since these Celtic goddesses of slaughter are generally associated with the prosperity of the land and the fertility of its cattle and crops, as well as with carnage, bloodshed and vengeance.
In fact, Morningstone seems to be the Celtic Otherworld, especially that precinct known as "The Land of Women," where enchanting music is in the air and the food and drink are beyond compare, but even this conclusion is merely convenient, for Morningstone lies somewhere between Shakespeare and Jung, a land of dreams — and nightmares.
Here, the argument is simply stated. Mankind is out of control. His success is bringing ruin to the rest of Nature and Earth's entire eco-system is now in danger. Unless Mankind is terminated, or its behavior radically altered, it will not only bring about its own ruin, but destroy most of the rest of creation in the process. The Furies would act against Mankind's criminal misconduct forthwith, but the Muses conspire to give Mankind one last chance to mend its ways. The Fates appear impartial, but in fact, all nine goddesses are merely facets of Mother Nature or the Ninefold Muse, herself an artificial construct created to alert Mankind to its danger — or so it must seem to a rational 21st century mind.
Primitive man had no need of such constructs. If he failed to live within Nature's law, he perished. Disease, predators and natural disasters were adequate to keep the species in check. But as Mankind evolved, he devised ways to temporarily circumvent natural law. He overcame diseases, altered his environment to suit himself, cleared the forests, plowed the praries and farmed the sea. Today, Mankind's most dangerous enemy is his fellow man, but his penchant for violence and greed need not be the agent of his downfall.
Mankind's very success as a species contains the germ of his destruction. Our planetary eco-system is closed, no matter how huge it appears to us. Within this closed eco-system, the human race is now so numerous that it has become like one huge laboratory culture. Rare diseases which once would have run their course in some remote hinterland, now travel quickly around the world, threatening the entire human population. That some of these horrors may be due to human laboratory experiments is ironic, but not surprising.
The inescapable conclusion is as straightforward as the argument. If Mankind cannot or will not control itself, Nature certainly will. Here, we are merely being told that impartial Nature's solution may not be in Mankind's best interest. This is the storyteller's single heroic theme, the ancient mystery that once ordered Mankinds' rituals and daily behavior, the substance of our mythology, folklore and religion, all out of fashion in our schools, today. And so, Morningstone emerges, only half-remembered, but desperately desired, a deep and constant source of inspiration, just below the surface of the stream of consciousness we call reality.
Travis Edward Pike
28 January 2019, Otherworld Cottage