I’m not sure but it’s most certainly earlier that I started being interested in etymology, but I definitely recall the effect of my meager semester of Latin from freshman year of high school. I know without a doubt that I got a couple extra answers correct on my S.A.T. because of that class.
I find myself periodically lamenting not having been able to take more Latin, but it wasn’t offered again and (really, who am I fooling?) I totally slacked off in that class anyway. I also find myself lamenting the lack of a better grounding in the classics, that I know I would have resisted had it been required, but would have no doubt utilized that often in my life had I had it.
As it is, my Latin joins my French, Spanish, Japanese, Irish, American Sign Language classes and my dabbling informally with another dozen or so (not the least of which are Klingon, Esperanto, Mohawk, and so on and on). All things at quite less than any functional basis let alone fluency, and really more closely resembling trivial acquaintances.
Anyhow, it should be no surprise that when I read years ago a poem about Star Goddess in Victor Anderson’s Thorns of the Blood Rose, I immediately parsed the name in that work, Quakoralina, into the speculative macaronic parts “quak-oral-ina” which to me immediately suggested “quake”, derived from OE cwacian meaning to “shake or tremble”, “oral”, from L os-, or- meaning “mouth”, and “-ina”, from L -ina which is a diminutive feminine ending that my dictionary safari at the time suggested could even mean “Our Lady”. So, ever since then, I’ve connected Star Goddess in Feri to a title “Our Lady Orgasm” in my own mind.
At some point in the last couple of years (apparently this was Dec 2007), I was on another dictionary safari for something or other (was I maybe looking again at the debate between the using “fora” vs. “forums”?) and tangentially ran into the Latin root fera, meaning “wild animal”, and thought of the word Feri. Previously, I’ve made sense of the name Feri through a colocation of Fae and iron and, using the Irish rí, for “king”, “royal Fae/iron” (Did I come up with that one or did I actually see it somewhere? Not to be confused with Iron Chef at all!) or “workers of the Fey” or as an anagram for Fire, being perhaps a hidden blue flame. But, Feri could be ferī, a masculine plural nominative of L fera, which, since the masculine is used to denote mixed genders, could now equate to “wild animals of mixed genders”. How interesting and fitting given the wild lascivious freedom said to be regained from recovering the Black Heart of Innocence.
Well, I don’t know why it took so long, but in the last couple weeks it suddenly flashed to mind that the Latin word fera is related to the Greek root thēri- which, of course, is in the word thēria, “wild beasts”, and thērion, “wild beast”, which last along with ΤΟ ΜΕΓΑ ΘΗΡΙΟΝ, “The Great Beast”, are names used by Aleister Crowley.
And, of course, now that’s present in my mind, it’s like a wild beast in its obviousness tromping through my china shop. For example, it’s plainly staring me in the face on the Wiktionary page about the Latin ferus, so how did I not see it before now?
I know it’s a speculative thing really, but this flashed to me as another possible way of creating connection and reflection for myself, at the very least through the process of hermetic drift, between the ideas and traditions of Feri and Thelema. And, you know, could conceivably, though this is not attested anywhere I’ve seen and may be controversial, be more possible evidence of some measure of influence between the two.
I probably should have said this at the outset, but better late than never: I’m not speaking from any authority about Feri; in any case, I’m only speaking from any authority to, for and from myself; my mind is my own, in several senses of meaning. I suppose at this point at most I’m an interested outsider anymore. But, at the very least this can’t be shocking to anyone else from Reclaiming or Feri that’s participated in a Gnostic Mass and therefore has surely also seen reflection of Star Goddess on the altar there, right? And, anyway, I’d already suggested this when I noted the quote in ABA of a connection between Aiwass and “the God of the Yezidis” that in turn suggests, and is further explored in the footnote in that source, Crowley had connected Aiwass with Melek Taus, including that both are “messengers”. Although not really “explicit” in the direct quote from Crowley as I wrote then, this connection is pretty damned apparently being made. In spite of an almost psychotic flurry of messages to me via every possible method of contacting me once I’d pointed it out, I was excited and surprised to have that other flash of connection then too. (Though I was quite a bit less so once I returned from being out and about and I found the hounds had started hounding and bounding around; especially after all that to then finally agree and even get enthusiastic about finding peacock feathers. Yeah, not that I’ve anything against hounds per se, but I’m really more of a cat person, my own self.)
(I’d sure like to get my eyes on a list of books that were in Victor Anderson’s library out of curiosity! It seemed like there was some idea of a list in something I read about pentacles and trees by Valerie Walker)
And, through backpropagation, as a Greek equivalent to the Latin, I can also personally see using Therioi as an equivalent to Feri.
Update 30mar10 @ 8:07am:
I keep meaning to note somewhere and never seem to find a place, and here is at least as good as anywhere, if not topical: every time I see Liber AL II.28, I am struck by the homonym/synonym there:
“None, breathed the light, faint & færy, of the stars, and two.”
So not to be all, you know, interpretive of Liber AL, but, one could say the light of the stars is faint and færy; the light is star goddess. Nuit is a færy light. And, elsewhere one could find that her colour is black, but really blue and gold.
You know, just sayin’.