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Loduta, Loduta by Kūlgrinda and Donis – Hymn to the Mother Goddess Žemyna

A depiction of the Baltic Goddess Žemyna from the album cover art of ‘Giesmės Žemyna’ (Hymns to Žemyna) by Kūlgrinda and Donis

“Loduta, Loduta” is a song by the traditional Baltic folk group Kūlgrinda and Lithuanian folk artist Donis, and is a hymn to the Mother Goddess Žemyna.

The Mother Goddess Žemyna shares many attributes with Mother Goddesses found in other cultures connected to the ancient Religion of the Sun.1 In the Baltic tradition she is associated with creation, birth and death, nature, the earth and the cycles of the seasons2 and is venerated during festivals and events throughout the year,3 particularly the spring and autumn.

In the Religion of the Sun, aspects of the spring and autumn equinox are associated with the Spiritual Mother goddess as she guides a person as they descend within to learn about and eliminate the various egos like greed, envy, hatred, anger etc., (symbolized at the time of the autumn equinox)4  and the return to her womb (also often depicted as the earth) to be reunited with her during the process of enlightenment, which is symbolized at the time of the spring equinox.5

Kūlgrinda describes Žemyna as:

…the mother of all. Every morning and evening she is welcomed (kissed) as if she were a mother… The earth is also the Mother of the dead. We come from her as from a mother and so we shall return to her.6

This hymn is sung in praise of her. It describes the connection between the Mother Goddess and the earth, and her connection to the spring and autumn. In Baltic/Lithuanian traditional songs certain words are used as a mantra-like chant, some of which are considered ancient mystical words. The refrain Laduto and Loduta are used as a form of exaltation, welcoming and honoring a deity.789

Here are the lyrics to “Loduta, Loduta” translated into English and published with permission from Kūlgrinda:

You, Žemyna, laduto, beloved Žemyna, laduto,
Bloom with flowers, laduto, so colourful, laduto
You, Earth, laduto, beloved Žemyna, laduto,
Bloom with rue flowers, laduto, so green, laduto,
You Žemyna, laduto, mother, laduto,
Grow with oaks, laduto, most strong, laduto,
Beloved Žemyna, laduto, blossom raiser, laduto,
Ripen with apples, laduto, most sweet, laduto,
You, Earth, laduto, blossom raiser, laduto,
Grown with grain, laduto, most ripe, laduto,
Beloved Žemyna, laduto, blossom raiser, laduto,
Fill your granaries, laduto, most full, laduto,
Beloved Žemyna, laduto, blossom raiser, laduto,
Strengthen our, laduto, family, laduto

We’ve added this to our traditional music library and more songs about the Mother Goddess and the Religion of the Sun can be found there:


  1. The Mother Goddess is found in many other cultures around the world such as Durga and Kali (Hindu,) Isis, Hathor and Sekhmet (Ancient Egypt,) Inanna (Sumerian,) Pachamama (Inca) and many others.  

  2. Vycinas, Vincent. Search for Gods. (The Hague: Nijhoff, 1972.) p. 31-33.  

  3. Gimbutas, Marija. The Balts. p. 191-193  

  4. Belsebuub and Lara Atwood, The Path of the Spiritual Sun: Celebrating the Solstices and Equinoxes (Mystical Life Publications: Revised and updated third edition, July 2018), Chapter Two, p. 73-81  

  5. Ibid. Chapter Four, p. 158-162  

  6. See accompanying booklet for Giemės Žemynai performed by Kulgrinda and Donis. 2013  

  7. “Lithuanian Folklore as a Source of Baltic Religion: The Fire Ritual.” A Historical Perspective of Americans of Asian Indian Origin. Accessed August 09, 2018. https://www.infinityfoundation.com/mandala/h_es/h_es_trink_i_fire_frameset.htm.  

  8. “SUTARTINES: MAGICAL MUSIC AS A SYMBOL OF HARMONY AND ORDER
 Daiva Račiūnaitė-Vyčinienė, Magičeskaja muzyka sutartines kak simvol garmonii i porjadka, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 179-196, Lublin 2001. Accessed September 8, 2018. Via Summaries of Etnolingwistyka (Lublin) vol. 8 / 1996 — 16 / 2004:  http://www.rastko.rs/rastko/delo/11706.  

  9. Rimantas Balsys. “Lada (Didis Lado) in Baltic and Slavic Written Sources.” Institute of Slavic Studies: Polish Academy of Sciences. Acta Baltico-Slavica 30, PDF p. 49. Accessed September 8, 2018. http://ispan.waw.pl/default/images/SOW/abs30_sum.pdf  

About the author

Vida Norris

Vida Norris a writer and researcher for SpiritualSun.com and is a practitioner of the Religion of the Sun. Vida is of Baltic descent, and she is fascinated by the remnants of the Religion of the Sun that are found in her Lithuanian roots, many of which are still prevalent in Lithuanian culture today. She explores ancient sacred sites and pores over ancient texts, with the hope of bringing back the relevance of the Religion of the Sun to those interested in spirituality today.

18 Comments

  • I love that description of the mother from Kulgrinda. It’s amazing that they’ve kept this knowledge of the mother and wish to honour her with music, artwork etc. in their culture. Makes me wonder how it would shape a person to grow up with this knowledge and awareness of the great mother.

    I also love how they’ve kept those mystical words throughout time and how Kulgrinda uses them in their music. They fit the three quite different layers of this musical piece together in a very fascinating way and the feeling it gives is of deep mystery and power.

    Thanks very much for sharing Vida. I think this will be a wonderful piece to listen to over the equinox period!

  • There’s something very mystical about the music Kulgrinda create. The sound creates mental images for me of people chanting while holding torches and moving through a forest to some sort of sacred space for a ceremony 🙂

    • 🙂 That’s a nice image David. I also sometimes get these images when listening to music in concentration and genuine interest, and they can sometimes have some truth to them.

  • Nice song,thanks for sharing Vida.
    it’s interesting how it’s connected with the Spiritual Mother. I think the lyrics are like wishes…

  • Polyphonic singing is one of my most favourites and it’s great seeing modern groups using it. I knew from Greece and Bulgaria that is popular (as much popular traditional music can be…) but never heard from Lithuania before.
    Especially this one here has a mystical feeling and such a type of lyrics I never heard before. Maybe because of the general revival of the ancient Lithuanian tradition which is going on, like the performance you post recently here but also because of the existence of this special group of Kulgrinda/Romuva.

    Thanks Vida!

  • Interesting artwork of the Earth goddess on the front cover btw.

    Showing the mother goddess in the form of a female/mother figure of course, but also not being entirely realistic and incorporating what seems to me to be showing her represented as this energy of nature.

    I also generative energy spirals, soil from which plants grow, actual grain crops (with a human/son figure born from the Earth?) I see the Hagall runes on both her arms, perhaps representing the transformative element that hail/rain brings to the land? (or the rune might signify a very different meaning?) I see serpent-like shapes at the top as well, closely associated with her. Waves-like water patters as hair or veil? In fact the whole scene might be set below the surface, in the waters and sea of the Mother Goddess?

    Anyway I think it’s nice to see modern artwork where someone is obviously consciously trying to implement such symbols.

  • Very nice song. I like how the musical elements build upon one another in this performance. The polyphonic style is very interesting. I was listening to a podcast on traditional polyphony recently (this one and this one) where the speaker mentioned how this style of traditional “village singing” can be found in many parts of the world, including Europe and Russia, throughout Asia, and Africa, but that it has mostly survived only in very remote mountainous regions of the world and/or mostly within isolated cultures largely untouched by modernity or by the spread of Christianity. This ancient music form is apparently disappearing from the world today, so it’s nice to have bands like Kulgrinda reviving it and keeping it fresh and alive.

    • Thanks for sharing those podcasts Jenny, I’ve bookmarked them to listen to in the future. I really like the effect of polyphonic singing, there’s something about the beautiful harmonies and tensions that arrive from within the almost-chaos of repeated and looped words and melodies that really draws me. Maybe because I’ve always really liked the limited experience I’ve had of being part of these singing groups, (my family used to do a very amateur version at Christmas!) and then the music by its very nature expresses the power and dynamism of a group, which is only amplified when the meaning of the song is in essence a prayer.

      I’m not sure if this has been shared somewhere before, but in case not here it is – from an article about Romuva Vida shared previously. I found it very interesting and helpful to get a glimpse of the transcendent power of song in ancient solar religious practice and ceremony:

      https://www.infinityfoundation.com/mandala/h_es/h_es_trink_i_fire_frameset.htm

      “In Romuva’s worship rituals, Dainos (chants) play a special part, and like other traditional customs and symbols they take on holiness, power and meaning. Daina – song, to the Baltic nations has always been the most important means of spiritual expression. Balts, a land of songs, have their own holy scripture – songs “dainos”. Our kinsmen, the aryans, in their holy text the “Avesta”, use the word “daena”, just as the word daina, song, of the same origin, – its meaning – “faith, inner essence and the spiritual me”. Daina, song is life giving to the essence of man and shows man’s vitality. Old and young, men and women, all sang while working, merry making and grieving. Songs have been handed down from one generation to another as the greatest treasure, as the eternal fire.

      Romuva rituals are often begun with a special type of song called sutartine. A Sutartine is a uniquely Baltic type of polyphonic canon, which produces unusual harmonies. It is a genre of ritualistic chants that often contains mystical texts, with archaic symbolism. Sometimes they include strange words of incantation, such as dobylio, tuta, lylio, chuta, chutyta, sadula, gadula. The meaning of these words is not always known.” – Inija Trinkuniene

  • I really enjoyed listening to this song especially when the singing started. What a beautiful way to connect to our Divine Mother.
    Thanks Vida.

  • An interesting tune this one, it felt like a sort of invocation to me. The many layers of melodies were also intriguing, especially towards the end, where it became almost slightly disharmonious, invoking a “something is about to happen” feeling, at least for me. :-).

    Thank you for sharing Vida, especially the bit about the significance of the Spiritual Mother during equinoxes. Interesting how the song is mentioning the Mother in relation with flowers and blossoms, and then also with the ripe grains.

  • What beautiful music. I found that the longer that I listened to the actual singing, the more I felt drawn into this quite powerful hymn to the Mother Goddess.

  • Wow, what an interesting tune.

    Thanks Vida, I like how this site invites us to listen to different sounds and songs from other cultures and traditions. I find that for me personally, it is good to be challenged on the conventional tunes and sounds that I have gotten used to.

    Certainly a very different way of singing a song of praise to the Divine Mother of the Earth.

    I really it. thank you.

  • Such a beautiful song which provides a powerful and simple message. It reminds me of how the connection with our Divine Mother is the most sacred relationship we can ever have – a guiding force in very moment in our life.

    Thanks for sharing Vida.

  • Thanks for posting Vida, it’s a really beautiful song.

    I recently visited an old Celtic site while in Ireland and there was lots of little artwork and trinkets venerating the old mythology there, which added this gentle vibe to the area. Even when out in some rural areas, seeing how some aspects of spirituality are interwoven into the daily culture is nice and gives this sort of soft spiritual nourishment.

    It’s nice to see that natural veneration happening in the Baltic as well, especially through a really lovely song 🙂

  • The way that the music comes in cycles, with its ebbs and flows, really seem to highlight the seasons of the year. To me, it seems as the lyrics encourage a sense of wonder with the Divine Mother.

    This song is a great tribute to the Divine Mother and I love listening to it.

    Thank you for sharing Vida!

  • Hi Vida,

    Thank you for this nice song. It comes at a very good time as the Divine Mother has been very central in my life since a while now. It is beautiful to render honour to her with such beautiful lyrics and songs. What I really like about this song is after the nice intro, the suspense that was built up until the men started singing. Also the different groups of women and men singing together and alternating, was nicely done. It felt so much stronger when the different groups were singing together.

  • Thanks for posting Vida.

    What a lovely carry-you-away tune… listening to it attentively just with my eyes closed felt like it gave a nice break.

    It’s probably just my own subjective interpreting 🙂 but it felt like a gentle worry-less summer tune, until it gets to the more serious autumn time with a need to work. But a strength starts emerging again as well from that with the comeback of the tune and raising drone tone.

    I like the added repeated holy words in between the lyrics/wishes. As if those divine words, names and sounds give added power to manifest what is asked for.

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