However, before we attempt to address Tabiti directly – as well as the Queen of the Heavens Indo-European deific complex for which She stands – it is first necessary to spend a bit more time sketching out the broader Solar Goddess typology of the Indo-Europeans. This is because, as it happens, there are several and varying ‘layers’ of Solar Goddess occurring within the realms of the Indo-European mythology ; with the ensuing garbled recollection of these forming the basis for much of the subsequent complexity and indeed obscuration of the Solar Goddesses all up – most especially in and of Their true, fundamental nature.
Perhaps ironically, given my opening remarks in the previous piece which sought to lay at the feet of the Greeks and Romans the ‘blame’ for the Modern mythperception of the Solar and Lunar deities as being male and female respectively … the best immediate guide for our purposes to the true nature of these things is nevertheless to be found amidst their mythologies.
Now, before going further – it is necessary to make a note of my earlier-stated position that a lot of what goes on in Greek mythology as applies the Sky Father deific, is the result of the Greeks mangling their own mythology. Partially with a view to ‘syncronizing’ it with the incoming cultural influences of the Mesopotamians and others; but also, perhaps, merely for other and more endogenous reasons of mythopolitical convenience amidst themselves. The situation of the Sky Father, therefore, is one of what I have taken to calling a Three-Three split. Three generations refracted out from Him longitudinally – Ouranos, Kronos, Zeus; but also three sibling-aspects refracted out laterally – Zeus, Hades, Poseidon. I shall not make the case for this contention once more in this piece for reasons of space, although various elements of it can be found in my previous works such as “Sky-Earth-Thunder – A Brief Comparative Model of the Divine Family” and “Swear By The Sea, Swear By The Stars, Swear By The Sky – On The Mytholinguistics Of Varuna Neptune Ouranos” – to name but two.
The reason that I mention this, is because I believe that a close examination of various *other* relationships attested in Greco-Roman mythology, evinces fundamentally the same pattern. That complex and interwoven linkages between this or that suspiciously familiar seeming ‘Sky Father’-esque figure and maternal – yet *Solar* – Goddess or Titaness … are because these are largely the fragmented recollections of fundamentally the same pairing. As can be attested via the usual sources: the theonymics and their etymology, as well as the mythological associations of each.
We shall commence, as it were, at the end – at the point wherein these mythogenetics had most resoundingly made ‘landfall’ within the mortal realm. That of Zeus and Leda – the resulting progeny of which included not only the famed Dioscuri, but also Helen (yes, *that* Helen – ‘of Troy’), Phoebe [‘Shining’], and several others besides. Conventional Classical mythology insists that one of the Horse-Twins was of mortal fathering and therefore not (as) divine; however the lack of such comparative attestation in the other Indo-European mythologies detailing the Dioscuri’s equivalent expressions would appear to suggest that this was a Classical interpolation rather than endogenous to the ‘authentic’ and vastly more archaic source material. Presumably as a way of ‘splicing’ them and their accompanying sisters to the bloodline of a particular Spartan king – Tyndareus. But I digress.
This matters. Because Helen (of Troy) is, funnily enough, a reasonably well-attested Goddess in Her own rite. There was a prominent temple at Sparta to Her, apparently as a Solar Goddess – which fits, after all, with the etymology of the name ‘Helen’ (derived from the same ultimate roots as ‘Selene’ and/or another term for ‘Torch’) – and without looking too hard at all, we find an escalating pile-up of not-so-subtle hinting as to Her divine nature strewn throughout the Iliad and other such ancient Classical sources. The Spartan temple to Helen was, reportedly, also consecrated to Menelaus at some later date – although there is room for quite some conjecture as to just why that might have occurred. My personal thought at this time is that it likely represents a) Menelaus as a *lunar* deific – replicating the Marriage of Surya (Goddess) and Soma (Lunar God) as found in the Surya’s Bridal Hymnal of the RigVeda [RV X 85]; and/or b) the effective role of Menelaus & Helen as pseudo-progenitors of the Spartan people (in much the same manner that Romulus & Remus were not *literally* the progenitors of the Romans, but nevertheless were incredibly important ‘foundational’ mythic figures for them) – which would interestingly re-caste “Menelaus” as the “Spirit of the People” [‘Menos’ + ‘Laus’; for more expansive detail upon the concept of “Menos” and “Manyu” in Indo-European thought, and with a particular emphasis upon the Sky Father deific … please consult my previous work – “MahaShivRatri And The Mytholinguistics Of War [Part 3] – The Mind, The Mania, The Manyu”]. But again, I digress.
The more intriguing point to be raised, perhaps, as applies Helen and Leda – is to do with Leda herself. As this is a name whose meaning has been ‘hidden’. And I mean that both literally and figuratively – as the name may potentially derive from similar sounding Ancient Greek terms for a ‘hidden one’, an ‘obscured one’ – Leto. Although also potentially from the Lycian ‘Iada’, meaning “Wife”. The notion of the mother of certain of Zeus’ more prominent offspring being His ‘Wife’ is, perhaps, a rather novel one – although it is not without some precedency in other various accountings ‘stablished via the comparative view (e.g. the Etruscan Hercules – Hercle , and the Etruscan Minerva – Menrva, both being regarded as children of Tinia (Jupiter) and Uni (Juno); or, as we shall see, potentially also various of the Hindu view).
However, the main reason that I raise the name of “Leda” is due to the conceptual overlap with both i) Classical “Leto”, and ii) Vedic “Chhaya”. In the case of the former, we have what is clearly a Mother Goddess figure – bearing not only the ‘national gods’ of the Lycians [by which is apparently meant Apollo & Artemis], but also facilitating the foundation of the Lycian nation via Wolves. Divine parentage and Wolves as the founding elements of an Indo-European nation – now where have we heard THAT before! Another origin myth for the Lycians records their derivation from the Telchines – ascribed various parentages (that are ultimately somewhat consistent if one knows how to look – squaring Poseidon, Pontus, etc. with the Sky Father as Sea deific, for instance), but of interest here due to their descent from Nemesis … also identified in some Classical sources as the Mother of Helen via Zeus. The major point to be extracted here – is the parentage of Apollo and Artemis … as, in addition to the obvious Solar connotations of Apollo, there are some striking further parallels that we shall subsequently explore.
In the case of the latter – Chhaya – the theonym means ‘Shadow’ or ‘Shade’, and refers to the ‘dark twin’ image of the more customarily recognized Wife of Surya (God, this time, rather than the similarly named Goddess), Saranyu [‘Speedy’/’Swift Flowing’/’Agile’]. It is not hard to see how ‘Shade’ and ‘Hidden One’ might be figuratively co-related; especially given the mythology around Chhaya has Her role and result as providing an obscuration of sorts to Saranyu, Who can no longer bear to stand the brightness of Her Husband. (There may also be some mythic resonancy and yet-further archaic recollection of a shared Indo-European narrative element here – as just as Surya eventually catches up with Saranyu by approaching in animal form (They are both horses), so too do we find Zeus making an approach to Leda and/or Nemesis in animal shape. In the case of the Nemesis versions of the myth, there may be various animal transformations by both parties – although with either geese or swans being the form finally settled upon by both Zeus and Nemesis for when the catching up occurs. Perhaps there is some figurative resonance between the symbolism of Swans and that of Horses – another piece for another time)
The progeny of Chhaya (and, for that matter, Saranyu) are further interesting for our purposes – as we find these attested as Shaani, Bhadra [occasionally identified as Vishti], and Tapati. Shaani, perhaps surprisingly for one customarily regarded as ‘The Dark One’, has some various points of coterminity with Apollo [‘The Destroyer’, in a certain sense; the Crow-Associated Driver-Out-Of-Evil via Shooting], however we shall leave an in-depth examination of these for some other time. Bhadra, meanwhile, makes for a fine comparative with Artemis – a fierce and occasionally rather unapproachable Goddess of the Hunt (and/or a rather *more* approachable form of the Destroyer Goddess Herself – the mythology and the linguistics are … complex, to say the least; a pattern which repeats itself when we look at Diana, and not simply in the vexed matters of parentage or consortry) [the Underworld associations of Vishti, meanwhile, are further resonant with the Diana deific … but again, we’ll come to that in diue Time]; while Tapati, She of the Radiant, Solar, beauty beyond all others … should instantly recall the mind, in some ways, to Helen Whom we had met earlier.
Of additional interest is the Manu ascribed to Chhaya’s motherhood – as this provides both an accordance and a conceptual overlap with Her somewhat-Sister, Sharanyu, wherein Surya fathers *the* Manu with the latter [along with, of course, Yama & Yami – the former of Whom has some clear conceptual coterminity with ShaaniDev, and both with Shiva – as I discussed in my previous work, “Saturday – Shani Dev’s Day – Saturn’s Day”]. I believe that in much the same manner as we have encountered elsewhere in this piece, this is evidence that Chhaya and Saranyu are not actually different Goddesses – but rather, are twin Aspects of the same Solar (and, evidently, Shade) Mother Deific. Further evidence for this assertion is provided by the markedly differing Puranic-era accountings for the parentage of Revanta [a lesser-known Horse and Huntsman God, perhaps conceived as a triplet with the two Asvins] – some ascribing the Motherhood of Him to Saranyu, others to Chhaya, and others again to Ratri [‘Night’].
In any case, it is the Horse-Twins that help to bind the whole bracket of these aforementioned paragraphs together – as we find in the Vedic accounting, the Asvins mothered by Saranyu to Surya; and in the Greek accounting, by Leda to Zeus [indeed, this is literally what Dioskuri means – Boys/Sons of Dyaus – which directly accords with the “Divo Napata” means of address for the Asvins in, for example, RV 1 117 12 & RV 1 184 1]. It should also be noted that the fatherhood of the Asvins is *also* attested to Dyaus, to Rudra – and as I intend to expound upon more at some later date, this helps to evince that Rudra is Dyaus Pitar, and that Surya, Vivasvat, can *also* be utilized quite directly to refer to Him rather than only to the Sun that is the Son of the Sky Father. But more upon that last element later. It should also-also be noted that there is some confusion and ambiguity as to whether Ushas [‘Dawn’ – and fairly directly cognate to Ancient Greek ‘Eos’, Roman ‘Aurora’ etc.] is supposed to be the Sister, the Mother, or perhaps even the Bride of the Asvins. I would hazard the speculation that it is plausible for ‘Ushas’ to be doing quite a lot of work as a theonymic-title, and therefore referring to *several* Goddesses [in much the same way, as we may see, that ‘Phoebe’ does] in a somewhat descriptive sense that may also encapsulate Her/Their functional role; and with the familial etc. relationships attested, in some cases perhaps not being entirely literally meant.