We are into the final days of Walking with Mary.
Walking with Mary started off as an online annual retreat
called Thirty Days with Mary. When the Mysteries of Mary tarot deck
went out into the world I realised that there are many that would like
a practise or tools with which to re-connect or connect with
Mary, beyond the ways of religion of childhood.
The practises of Walking with Mary/Thirty Days with Mary
are filled to the brim with ritual, mantra, prayer and tarot.
Probably too much if it is your first time participating.
Ideally you should take your time and do what you can
and take the practise over a couple of months and make it your own.
And as you know by now, the more you apply and engage with the
practises and the mantras, the deeper your experience and inner connection
The fourth week is dedicated to the Suit of Roses.
The Suit of Roses are traditionally Pentacles.
The colours are red, white and black.
This is the suit of embodiment; where body, soul and spirit
connect; where light and shadow dance in an eternal lovemaking.
Through the ages the goddesses Isis, Venus, Aphrodite and the Shekinah
had been called Great Rose, the Rose Queen, Flower of Venus,
the Rose Garden, the Cosmic Rose and the Mystical Rose.
The rosary is a universal form of prayer and is present in many religions.
In the Bhagavad Gita it is said that the Universe is a necklace and the string
is the Atman that holds all things together. The Hindu rosary is sacred to
Sarasvati, Goddess of language. Sarasvati hears the words of the prayers
and she is the Word. The Buddhist rosary has 108 beads, as does the Hindu
mala and this number represents the cycles of the universe. The Muslim rosary
has 33 beads for the 99 names of God.
The rose is an ancient symbol sacred to the goddess, to the feminine
and the Wisdom tradition. Sacred places often carry the perfume of
roses and mystics experience the fragrance of the rose during ecstatic
moments. We are not excluded from these mystical experiences.
During my first San Garmano pilgrimage I visited the church
and body of Padre Pio and when I meditated in the sacred space
I was engulfed with the fragrance of roses. It was so strong
I will never forget it. During my visit to the Rosa Mystica shrine
a few years later I was attracted by the strong perfume of roses,
only to discover that the fragrance was coming from the statue of Padre Pio.
I also write about the fragrance of roses and honey at Lourdes
and in Lisieux at the body of St Terese and those who went with me
had the same experience.
The radiant Lady of Lourdes stood over a wild rose bush
and she appeared with golden roses on her bare feet. Her image made
in roses appeared on the inside of the cloak of Juan Diego of Guadulupe.
The original rose flower used to be an open flower with five distinct
petals. The five petals are similar to the inner core of an apple when cut in half;
you can clearly see the pentacle. The apple is also a traditionally feminine
symbol. The shape of the five petals and five segments in the apple’s
inner core, is similar to the five pointed pattern that Venus forms in her
orbit when she gets closest to Earth.
These last seven days are dedicated to Mary, the Great Rose,
the Rose Queen, Rose of Divine Love, the Rose Garden
and Our Lady of Love and Beauty.
My altar for the week – I chose the Priestesshood card
This week we draw the fourth card for the Thirty Days of Mary.
Place all four cards in a row on your altar and start writing the story.
You may find that by the end of the thirty days you will be adding
more insights into the story.
Glory is the one who is our home
Glory for the presence in our hearts
Glory since the mystery transcends all words.
all songs, all signs
Glory is the hope that makes us live
Glory is the wonder that we were and are
and will become
Glory is the Spirit who invades our bones
and makes them shine
Glory in the wind and in the fire
Glory in the one breath
giving life to all the world
Glory in the rising earth
Glory embracing what we lost
Glory in assuming who we are
Glory in the woman who is whole