The Thirteen Houses Project: Heliotrope

[Once a month for the next twelve months, I will be doing a post on the 13th of each month based on one of the Thirteen Houses of the Court of Night-Blooming Flowers from Kushiel’s Legacy.]

Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day so it seems like an appropriate time to talk about Heliotrope House. The canon of Heliotrope House is devotion and love, and its motto is “Thou, and no other,” Heliotrope House holds that when Naamah slept with the King of Persis, she “basked in love as in the sun”. It is said that a patron who spends a night with a Heliotrope adept will feel as if they are the only one to have ever touched their heart.

Elua’s Precept, “Love as Thou Wilt” informs every aspect of D’Angeline society (at least, ideally, whether D’Angeline society lives up to it is up for debate). While all of the Houses of the Night Court have their own ways of expressing love and desire, Heliotrope House makes love (particularly the devoted love of lovers towards one another) front and center. To spend time with a Heliotrope adept is to experience this sort of love.

Of course, there are many different kinds of love, erotic and romantic love being only two of them. There’s familial love, love between friends, love of one’s country, love for one’s deities, love of a favourite food, place, or other thing, love can be intense or fleeting, you might love animals, or love an idea. There are so many different ways to love, and for some, certain kinds of love will be more important than others. For some, love of one’s deities eclipses all other concerns, others may have no use for love that is romantic or sexual in nature, either by choice or orientation. For some, love of things is superficial. Philosophers have argued since forever about “higher” forms of love, but for me personally, there are so many different kinds and ways of love and expressing love that it’s up to each person to decide where their priorities lie in this matter.

There’s a whole lot more I could say on this topic, but for now, enjoy tomorrow by whichever name you wish to call it, including simply “Friday”.

Love as thou wilt.

Image: Heliotropium peruvianum by Algirdas (via Wikipedia)

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