RUSALKI RUSSIAN GIRLS


 Rusalka ‘plural: Rusalki was perceived as a Female Ghost, Water Nymph, Succubus or Mermaid of Inorganic Feminine Intelligence that often dwelled in a waterway.

According to most Russian traditions, the Rusalki were usually seen as being of Amphibious Nature to indicate Reptilian characteristics, whereby to primarily live at the bottom of torque whirlpools, which is somewhat reminiscent of what the Yaqui Sorcerer Don Juan told Carlos Castaneda about the Toltec Allies. The Rusalki were seen to stalk the depths of the humid night to walk out to the bank naked or to dance amidst the meadows sky-clad. Should a Rusalki to see handsome men, they would hunt them down to fascinate with songs and dancing so that to mesmerise their quarry, to lead their prey away to the river floor, to live with them. The Russian folktales concerning the Rusalki have parallels with the Germanic Nix, Irish Banshee and Glaistig but most especially in regards to the Female Faerie Sorceresses called Dakini’s who are known of by Hindu Yogin, Tantric Practioner and Tibetan Buddhist as Khadomah.

Visual descriptions of the Rusalki reflect their environment to vary in form from region to region wherein to find Rusalki of fertile areas such as in Belorussia manifesting as seductively beautiful naked maidens to live without Men amidst them. However, In Greater Russia, whose environment is much harsher, the Rusalki appear as large-breasted Scythian Amazons of Valkyrie warrior predilection while in the Ukraine they were often linked to water. In northern Russia, the Rusalki manifest as hideous hags and to be very hairy wild-women while others to say of this region that the Rusalki are also perceived as most “Wicked Mischievous young Girls, whom are unattractive of sexually perverse wanton orientation with wild dishevelled hair."

“They were naked, wan, and cadaverous, like drowned corpses, and their eyes shone with evil green fire” (Johnson 155). 

The Rusalki are usually perceived as beautiful Fish-Women or as Mermaids to be commonly portrayed in Slavic folk-art and fairytales as stunningly seductive creatures whose beauty is unrivalled by any mortal woman.
“In her outward appearance, the Rusalka matched the natural beauty amid which she lived. Her fair tresses flowing in an eddying endless stream, her fine features framing her fathomless eyes; simply to see her was to ache with desire” (Phillips 66).

While others to describe the Rusalki as: “their faces are pale like the moon, and they wear robes of mist or green leaves, or perhaps a white robe without a belt. Their hair is green, or brown, decorated with flowers” (Johnson 155). The ethereal beauty of the Rusalki can only be tarnished by the windows to their inner beings that are as their spiral eyes of gold flecked green flame, which tell of their tragic beginnings.

The Rusalki are most commonly perceived to be the spirits of young women who have met their dire fate by drowning in deep waters, whether by accident, suicide or by malicious intent or to have been murdered by their own mothers. However, the motif of ‘Drowning’ may actually allude to Trance Induction of which the Feminine is most adept at. 

“Belief in them is most widely spread among the Russians (the Christian practitioners of dvoeverie), who hold that they are children who have died un-baptised, or have been drowned or suffocated, or else that they are girls and young wives who have met an unnatural death, or have been cursed by their parents” (Máchel 254).

These spirits of drowned Girls are perceived to spend some time in a purgatorial state of limbo before becoming a Rusalki as if to allude to an Initiatory period of Training. During this time of Initiation the young Rusalki are known by the Russian as a Navki or in Polish as Látawci Navki whom are reputed to appear in the form of birds, which cry out wailing cries like forlorn infants while continuously combing the countryside in search of their former Mothers.
The young Navki whom will never again know of their Mother’s love, are greatly feared with deep dread due to their malign reputation of jealously attacking those women who are close to the time of childbirth.

The initiatory period of wandering for these angry spirits of the Navki lasts for Seven long years, which seems to indicate an elder tradition of training young Girls by some form of ancient Matriarchal Religion whom chose those Girls that were adept at Trance (Drowning) Induction to teach away from their natural Mothers. However, those of a Christian disposition perceive the Navki as begging anyone who will listen to their sad tale in order to then baptize them but if the Navki cannot find a willing soul to take pity on their wailing voices to utter the proper words, they are doomed to spend the rest of their days as Rusalki.

It is those quiet spots out of the way ‘Power-Places’ along woodland brooks and rivers that the Rusalki are seen to live to also dwell deeply down within the bottom of still lakes and ponds, or under the continual turbulence of sharp rapids. There are certain times under Stars revolving as clock that they to eventually emerge from out of their underwater world to sit upon the shores near spiral engraved standing stones, or to be found perching within sanctified ritual world-trees of prayer offerings wearing nothing but feathered cloaks, where they attempt to “attract young people by imitating the crying of infants or laughing, giggling, and clapping their hands” (Máchel 253).

Many of the Russian folk stories describe the Rusalki realm of home underwater as “a place of entrancing beauty, its vast marbled chambers hung with crystal chandeliers, its walls and floors set with gold and precious stones” (Phillips 66).

But as beautiful as these underwater Dream palaces of Trance realm Astral be, the Amphibious Rusalki between and betwixt realities yearn to return to the land when summer approaches whereby “the waters are warmed by the rays of the life-giving light, they have to return to the trees, the houses of the dead” (Johnson 155).

The Rusalki were believed to be at their most dangerous during the Rusalye, Rusaliia ‘Rusalki Week’ of early June for at this time, they to have left their watery depths so that to swing upon branches of Sacred Birch of Forest and Willow trees near Waters at night chanting out their hypnotic Spell-formulae. The honouring of the Rusalki’s sacred tree is usually that of the Birch. The Slavic peoples of pre-Christian Russia used to believe that Trees are highly evolved beings, which are far more connected to humans than other Plants and Animals, which is not too dissimilar to the ancient Celtic perspective while the Birch Tree is one of the primary Holy Trees of the Siberian Shaman to be perceived as the World-Tree. The Birch tree, in particular, is seen as being “the locus for the coming together of the living and the dead, the communion of animal, plant and human life” (Hubbs 33).

During Rusalki Week, Birch Trees are usually decorated with flowers and other offerings such as prayer bundles where they stand naturally, or branches of the Tree may be brought into the home to be made into birch-garlands. Other village communities have been known to send young men into their local forest to fell a Birch, “which the girls dressed in women’s robes decorated with bright ribbons and pieces of cloth” (Johnson 157).

The Birch Tree was then duly carried into the village while songs were sung over it and the arrival of the Birch into the village was heralded by a ritual meal. This sacred effigy of Birch was then erected in a specially made ritual house in the village where she presided over the week's festivities as deity, which is reminiscent of another Russian deity and powerful Sorceress called Baba-Yaga of a similar type to that of Scottish Highlands Cailleacch Bheur whose nature akin to Hindu Kali whom lives in a ‘Hut’, which stands on Bird legs amidst Birch Tree forest, whereby the Rusalki are as her Faerie Sorceresses.

Swimming during this week was strictly forbidden especially to for pubescent young Girls and Boys just entering maturity, lest Mermaids would drag the swimmer down to the river floor. Max Vasmer has noted that the word Rusalka originally referred to the dances of Girls at Whitsuntide. The word is conjectured to have been derived from the Greek and that of ‘Rosalia’, the Latin term for Whitsuntide week, which originally meant ‘the festival of Roses’.

The Rusalki are seen to spend their time combing their long luxurious braided hair where their power to be, playing amongst themselves dancing circles to lure female seekers to their little deaths drowning into Trance so that to initiate into their arcane pre-Christian mysteries while the Men they to seduce. The Rusalki are also known for being spinners of Webs to hence hang the results of their labours within sacred trees or to draw spirals upon banks near flowing waters, where anyone passing should be wary of stepping upon. The Rusalki are also known for being the spinners of Time and that of ones fate to possess the power to affect the lives of local inhabitants whom “decided who died and who would be reborn, who prospered and who perished, who married and who would be barren” (Hubbs 33).

The Amphibious natured Navki to Rusalki are in essence a folktale memory of ancient Priestesses of a Matriarchal Religion whom were adept at Trance (Drowning) Induction and were very likely that of Female Shamans due to their close proximity with other North-Central Asian Shamanistic Traditions such as found in Siberia. The coming of Christianity could not handle their elder focus upon a ‘Feminine Inorganic Intelligence’ but most especially in regards to their Predatory Sexual orientation, which made the Priests to go around Cross-legged fearing for their Manhood to be verily enticed into deep moist maw ever hungering.