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The Goddess Archetype

The path to peace and wholeness is a trinity, that of mind, body and spirit.  It is necessary to pay attention to all three aspects of the self in order to arrive at and to know yourself as Divine Love.  A three-fold path dappled with shadow and light for indeed without the shadows, there is no existence.

In the works of Joseph Campbell and Carl Jung, the power of the collective consciousness and the face of the evolving archetype, are powerful allies on the path of psychological maturing towards individuation.

As we live in a patriarchal society and have done so for thousands of years, these archetypal images have been changed through that lens of perception, both within men and women.

The ancient god and goddess mythologies form a crucial part of our collective archetypal unconscious.  Within each and every man and woman the gods and goddesses are acting out their archetypal roles.  By understanding which goddesses you are keeping alive, you are closer to understanding your own psyche. 
By identifying your governing archetypes (in the goddesses in this instance) you are in a position to identify compelling behaviour and feeling patterns.  Through the study of the inner goddesses you can empower yourself through the power of choice.
The various goddesses are aspects of the Supreme Mother Goddess and they have the power to heal or to disrupt.
Several of these goddesses underlie a woman’s behaviour and psychological style.  Men too, are influenced by the goddess types.  The goddesses reflect feminine energies in the male psyche, although men usually experience them as being more external to themselves in the shape of women they are attracted to or else have strong reactions to.
Men experience the goddesses projected onto the women around them.
All of men’s relationships with women are determined by one or more of the goddess energies and their particular archetypal energies.
One can assume that a certain predisposition to specific archetypes are brought into existence at birth.  Depending on the circumstances and the surrounding archetypal role models in one’s life, specific goddesses will be awakened and cultivated at various stages in one’s life. It is thus clear that this is not a static mandala, but an ever-changing one.  It changes through ways of thinking and very importantly, ways of acting and behaving.  Different ages and maturity also awakens different archetypes within oneself.
Every archetype has its pros and cons or negatives or positives, depending on its reason for being in your consciousness.  For instance, the price for living a protective goddess, such as Athena,  might be the loss of vulnerability and intimacy of Persephone.
In some instances you may need to cultivate a certain goddess and in another you would have to let go of a goddess.  Your responsibility is to become aware of which goddess/es are currently living in your psyche;  decide whether she still serves her purpose;  decide whether she is now bringing more harm than healing and then to make the choice as to let her go or to invite her sister into your psyche. All of this is of course, ideally spoken.  We are usually not at such a level of self-mastery and it is more a process of becoming aware of who is active in you and by becoming AWARE of her existence and then stepping into the role of witness and observer, ACCEPTING her presence.  Her presence is always there because you, the self, have decided that her presence is needed.  She may have awakened in your psyche as a protective goddess or one who is keeping your self-esteem in tact, or one who warns you of perceived threats to your happiness.  Through SURRENDER, one has the power to let go into the hands of the Divine and the status quo can then change.

RESISTANCE and the refusal to look at oneself and one’s reactions objectively, leads to stasis, stagnation, suffering and disease.
Cultivating a goddess into your consciousness or letting one go from your mode of behaviour and perceptions is not always a simple and straightforward task, but more likely one that will call for great determination and perseverance at times and at other times, a gentle invitation is enough to upset the so-called apple cart!!  Dealing with the self, asks for great dollops of empathy and compassion and self-love and not critical analysis and self-judgement.
In the alchemical goddess philosophy, based on the Roman and Greek archetypes, there are three categories of goddesses: virgin, vulnerable and alchemical.  The goddess archetype are found in Eastern philosophies, Celtic, Norse and many many other cultures and their anthropology and religions, myths and tales.
All the goddesses are potential patterns in the psyches of all women, yet in each individual woman some of these patterns are activated/developed and others are not.  The ones that are developed become your personal archetypal patterns.  She is reflective of the feminine in the masculine.  
Women are born with an inherent disposition towards certain archetypes – these are then either activated or suppressed, depending on the influential factors. such as the family environment. The expectations of the child’s family support some goddesses and suppress others.  If a family disapproves of a girl’s inherent goddess, she may learn not to act her natural self and her self-esteem will suffer. Hormonal changes
activate certain goddesses in a woman’s life and cycle.  Pregnancy is a major factor in activating Demeter.
Different stages of life will also activate certain goddesses.
Please visit The Path of Divine Love for a series of Soul Collage cards on the goddess archetype. 

The three types of goddesses to follow ….


Mary Daly – Beyond God the Father
Marion Woodman – Leaving my father’s house
Jean Shinoda Bolen – Goddesses in Everywoman
Jennifer Barker Woolger – The Goddess Within
Patricia Monaghan – The Goddess Path
Patricia Monaghan – The Goddess Companion
Starhawke – Twelve Wild Swans
Starhawke – Spiral Dance
Jean Shinoda Bolen – Ring of Power

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Holy Day of Our Lady of Lourdes

11 February is the Holy Day of Our Lady of Lourdes
As though we are Divine
Ancient friend
Our Divine Mother looks at us
as though we are divine
Flinging flower petals onto our path
she worships the very air we breathe
Adoringly she pulls us onto her lap
embracing her beloved children 
with the passion
of one who has waited for eons
for this reunion.
She whispers softly into our ear
‘my darling son’ my darling daughter’
once and for all shattering any doubt
hat we are the only reason
for her existence
Ethan Walker III
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Anandamayi Ma

“There comes a time when the Beloved does not leave one anymore;  wherever one may go, He is ever by one’s side and His presence constantly felt.  At an earlier stage one perceived Him within all objects; but now He is not seen within the objects anymore, for there is nothing but He alone. Trees, flowers, the water and the land – everything is the Beloved and only He.  Every form, every mode of  being, every expression – whatever exists is He, there is none beside Him.
If everything is the Lord and nothing but He, then one’s body must also be He – the One Existence.  In this state, when one is deeply absorbed in dhyana, no physical activity – be it the performance of ritual or acts of service – is possible.  For He alone IS.  One no longer exists apart from Him.  Nevertheless, for some who have attained to this condition, the relationship between the Lord and His servant remains and is felt thus : He is the Whole and I am part of Him, and yet there is only the one Self.  Verily, everything is identical, undivided.  To realise this means to be immersed completely into the ocean of Oneness.
After this has been accomplished, one can again do puja and service, for the relationship between the Master and servant persists.  If, after the One Self has been realised, the relationship of a servant to his Master still continues, why should anyone object?  At first this was the path to one’s goal.  After realisation it is He, the One, who serves.  This is real service.
Does then ‘to merge into IT’ mean to become stone-like?  Not so, indeed!
For form, variety, manifestation are nothing but THAT’
We are THAT
It may be asked why there cannot be one and the same path for all?
Because He reveals Himself in infinite ways and form and verily, the 
One is all of them.  In that State, there is no ‘why’. 
Quarrels and disputes exist merely on the way.
With whom is one to quarrel?
Only while still on the way is it possible to have disputes
and differences of opinion

‘At dawn, we went by cycle rickshaws to the railway station. Even at that early hour, pilgrims flocked to the Ganges in a steady stream. Finally, hooting, with a cloud of smoke trailing overhead, the train from Varanasi pulled in, and screeched to a halt. Four young men in spotless white dhotis entered the first class compartment, and carried Ma out on a chair, to which four handles were attached. Ma looked fragile and delicate, wrapped in white cotton cloth. Her black, oiled hair fell over her shoulders. She looked at us with calm eyes. There was no reaction on her face, no sign of recognition of her devotees, many of whom she would have known for decades. She simply looked and her eyes moved slowly around the group. It was pleasant, and I had the strange feeling, that nobody was there behind those eyes. Inexplicably, tears started rolling down my cheeks. “That’s normal when one is touched by a great soul,” someone next to me reassured me. Indeed, I had the feeling that I had been touched by a very pure soul.

While waiting for Ma, we were singing bhajans or reciting the Hanuman Chalisa. Once, a girl of about 10 sat next to me. She sang full-throatedly, though a little out of tune. Listening to her, I liked her more and more. My heart was overflowing with love for her. Then the verandah door opened, and Anandamayi Ma appeared, supported by two women. Even before she reached the cot, she briefly stopped; half turned, and looked somewhat irritated in my direction. When she finally sat down on the cot, her glance settled on me for a long time. Yet this time, Ma’s glance did not strike me or induce any feeling. It seemed as if there was no centre that could have been struck. I simply looked back at her.

Probably Ma’s glance was attracted by the love that I felt for that girl, and probably she really did not perceive us as separate persons. After all, she often declared that it is a mistake to consider one as separate from others. However, almost certainly all of us, as we were sitting there on the verandah during her daily darshan, wished that she appreciated us personally. In addition, if we were honest, we most likely even wished that she appreciated our own person a little more than she appreciated the others.

However, Ma didn’t oblige. She was not consistent in her attention and affection. A genuine guru can see, even if his disciple can’t see it, that the ego is the culprit which makes life difficult. Naturally, he is not interested in flattering the ego and strengthening it – on the contrary. “The association with an enlightened being consists in getting blows to the ego,” Anandamayi Ma once remarked. My ego felt the blows. For example, when she didn’t look at me for long, and it reacted with heavy, resentful thoughts. It wanted to leave. On the other hand, I felt attracted to Ma, because I learnt around her almost effortlessly a new way of life – for example that everything is just right as it is.

“Trust in God. He certainly will look after you and all your affairs, if you really put full trust in Him, and if you dedicate all your energy to realise your self. You then can feel completely light and free,” Ma claimed and it sounded convincing. By ‘God,’ she meant the formless essence in everything. Nevertheless, this essence is not something abstract and cold. It is love, and can be experienced as the beloved. She also said, “You are always in His loving embrace.”

Extracted from mother supreme

How much more time will you spend at a wayside inn?

Don’t you want to go home? How exquisite it all is….
One is, in his own Self, the wanderer, the exile,
the homecoming and the home….oneself is all that
there is…

Do you want deliverance from the bonds of the world? Then weeping profusely, you will have to cry out from the bottom of your heart: Deliver me, Great Mother of the World, deliver me!…. When by the flood of your tears the inner and outer have fused into one, you will find her whom you sought with such anguish, nearer than the nearest, the very breath of life, the very core of every heart….

It is by seeking to know oneself that the Great Mother of all can be found
(Matri Darshan Ananda Mayi Ma).

Aum Sri Anandamayi Ma Namaha
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La Feile Bride

Bridgit, Mary of the Gael, Goddess and Saint of Poetry, Crafts, Healing and Fire :  Inpiration of poets, artists and artisans.
Brighid, excellent woman,
Sudden flame,
May the fiery, bright sun
Take us to the lasting kingdom.

Song of the Virgins of Kildare

St. Brigid’s church in Kildare was built on a site sacred to Brigid. Where Her eternal flame had once been tended by 19 priestesses, 19 nuns took it in turn to each tend the flame for a day and a night. On the 20th day, the Goddess (or the saint) tended the flame herself.

February 2 is one of the great cross-quarter days which make up the wheel of the year. In the Northern Hemisphere It falls midway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox and in many traditions is considered the beginning of spring and in the Southern Hemisphere it is the beginning of autumn.

In Western Europe, this was the time for preparing the fields for the first planting. This was an important day for grain growing communities who depended on the crops of the earth mother. This is the time of year, when the ground is first awakened and the seed placed in the belly of the earth. The fields were purified and offerings were made to the goddess.

This medieval Anglo-Saxon plowing prayer was said by the farmer while cutting the first furrow.

Whole be thou Earth 
Mother of men. 
In the lap of God, 
Be thous as-growing. 
Be filled with fodder 
For fare-need of men.

The farmer then took a loaf of bread, kneaded it with milk and holy water and laid it under the first furrow, saying:

Acre full fed, 
Bring forth fodder for men! 
Blossoming brightly, 
Blessed become; 
And the God who wrought the ground, 
Grant us the gifts of growing, 
That the corn, all the corn, 
may come unto our need.

 February 2 is also Imbolc, and Candlemas, the holy day of Brighid, Goddess and Saint, La Feile Bride. (pronounced Breede)  

The Sacred Well and Shrine at Kildare

Brighid is a Goddess of many names. In Ireland She is called Brigid, Brigit, Brighid, Brid. In Scotland She is called Bhrighde, Bride Breo-Saighit, Brede. The Welsh call Her Ffraid and the French call her Brigandu.
She is called Brigantia by the Northern English and Bridget in Sweden. Her name is pronounced Brighid or Bree-id.  Some have said that Her name may have come from the word Brihati, which means “high” or “exalted one” in Sanskrit. Her name in Gaelic means “fire tipped, exalted one, high one.”

 Imbolc, also called Oimelc [‘ewe’s milk’] marked the first stirrings of spring when young sheep were born, and when ewes came into milk. On this day, the first of the Celtic spring, Brigid was said to use her white wand to “breathe life into the mouth of the dead winter”, meaning the white fire of the sun awakened the land. 

An old poem stated; “Today is the day of Bride, The Serpent shall come from the hole.” An effigy of the serpent was often honoured in the ceremonies of this day, making it clear that Brighid had aspects as a serpent goddess. As the serpent sloughed its old skin and was renewed, so the land shook off winter to emerge restored; the snake symbolised the cycle of life. When Brighid’s cult was suppressed, then St Patrick had indeed banished the snakes [Pagans] from Ireland. However, Brighid’s popularity was so great that the church transformed her into a saint, allegedly the midwife of Christ and the daughter of a Druid who was converted to Christianity by St. Patrick, and who went on to found the Abbey of Kildare. 

Her festival became Candlemas when church candles were blessed. 

My painting of Bridgit

Brighid was invited into the home by the woman of the house, in the form of a doll or corn dolly dressed in maiden white. Oracles were taken from the ashes of the hearth fire, which people examined for a sign that Brighid had visited, i.e. a mark that looked like a swan’s footprint. If found, it was considered a lucky omen. The swan was an ancient attribute of the goddess Brighid. Many Irish homes still have a Brighid’s cross hung up somewhere. This was originally a solar symbol.

A small community of Brigidine nuns are keeping the sacred light of Brigit burning at Solas Brihde in Kildare.  I spent a week in Kildare, walking the pilgrimage of Bridgit, visiting her sacred well

Her favourite oak tree
a candle blessing at one of the stations of the Brigid walk
prayed at the Abbey of Brede
Weaving the St Bridgit cross is traditional on this day.

I found this step be step instruction on the site of the Brigidine sisters :
1.     Take the first rush/reed and hold it vertically.
2.     Fold a second rush/reed in half at the mid point of the first.
3.     Take a third and fold it around the second parallel to the first. This will now form a T-shaped piece, with one arm having one strand, the second having two and the third having three.
4.     Fold the fourth around the third to form a cross.
5.     Fold a fifth around the fourth, parallel to the single strand. Make sure you hold the centre tight!
6.     Continue folding each reed around the previous reeds.
7.     Work in a circular way until you have created enough of a woven centre. When your centre is as large as you want, hold in the reeds tightly so that the centre is tight and will hold the cross without any difficulty.
8.     Tie the end of each arm carefully and trim ends.

If you would like to read more about my pilgrimage to Brigid, Mary of the Gael and her presence in Glastonbury, please go here :

Carving of Bridgit milking a cow – on Tower of Michael,
                                                                                  the Tor, Glastonbury                                                                                  

A blessed La Feile Bride to you!!
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Lakshmi’s gilded basket spills over with wealth
But it is Saraswati’s humble mat on which sits wisdom.
Bengali Proverb

Saraswati is the Goddess of learning, knowledge, and wisdom. Her name derives from the Sanskrit words  sara meaning “essence” and swa meaning “self.” She is the wife of Brahma, the creator of the universe. Saraswati is worshipped by students, teachers, schoolchildren, scientists, academics and anyone interested in learning.

She has many titles including Goddess of Speech, Dwelling in the Front of the Tongue, She who Dwells on the Tongues of Poets, the Power of Memory, and She who is Intelligence.

She is usually depicted wearing a white sari, representing purity, sitting on a white lotus which symbolises supreme knowledge. Sometimes she is shown with four arms, and sometimes with two. Her rear left hand holds a book, which betokens that knowledge should be used to better humankind. Her rear right hands holds a rosary, which signifies that knowledge must be based in spiritual truth and not the ego, since knowledge dominated by ego can be destructive. She is accompanied by a swan, a symbol of transcendence and perfection. Saraswati is shown playing a veena, a type of lute, which denotes that the seeker after learning must learn to live in harmony with the world.

One aspect of Saraswati is the early goddess Vac [‘Speech’] who played a major part in creation: the god Prajapati’s mind produced Vac, who then wished to multiply and extend herself. It is said that the world was created through sound; the syllable Om is said to contain the whole process of creation.
In later myth, Saraswati also played a part in creation as the god Brahma divided his body into two parts, male and female. The female half was Sarasvati. She and Brahma mated and produced Manu who went on to make the world.

In a similar legend Krishna divided himself into male and female, purusa and prakriti [spirit and matter]. The female half had five shaktis or dynamic powers; Sarasvati was the shakti whose task was to provide insight, knowledge and learning.

Her feast day is celebrated in early spring, in January or February. on this day, pictures and statues of her are displayed in schools and universities and books, pens and musical instruments are blessed. It is considered auspicious if children speak their first words on this day.
Sarasvati is the inspiration behind all learning, culture, science and the arts, music and dance. She gave the gift of writing to humankind so that her songs could be written down and preserved. She is also the goddess of the spoken word, and eloquence, and words are said to pour from her like a sweetly flowing river’.
She is not a domestic goddess, and would rather give birth to works of art and learning than children, her essence is entirely spiritual, unlike most of the other Hindu goddesses, who are concerned with fertility and motherhood. 

Saraswati is the goddess of learning and acquired knowledge, rather than innate knowledge, whether in the arts, sciences, or spiritual thought. She is the patroness of students and academics, as well as musicians, poets and dancers. As the patron of rhetoricians and writers, she aids in the flow of words and eloquence.Saraswati is invoked to overcome the frailties of mind and poor memory. Above all, she is entreated to bestow the power of conveying knowledge to one’s students. It is said that she is a jealous rival of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, and that pursuing wealth alone will assure that Sarasvati’s gifts will desert you.

This beautiful piece was written by Anna Franklin. With thanks to :
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The Goddess

The feminine aspect of the divine has had many faces – goddesses of love and hatred, war and peace, birth and death, summer and winter, night and day, amongst thousands of others. It is time for us to reclaim the Goddess, to reclaim a balanced, harmonious spirituality, and to recognise the Oneness of being within all of creation – Anna Franklin

The Goddess has been known to every race and in every corner of the world. She has had many names and many faces. She is chaste virgin and passionate lover, fruitful mother and barren crone, creator of life and bringer of death. In many places, the feminine side of the divine has continued to be acknowledged, though in the western world, goddesses have been banished and demonised for centuries. ‘God’ is viewed as exclusively male.

However, our earliest deity was the Great Mother who gave birth to and nourished the cosmos. The first images of her appeared from the Pyrenees to Siberia over twenty thousand years ago as the Ice Age receded and people began to follow the herds of bison, horses and cattle across the emerging grasslands. These were figures of goddesses carved in bone, ivory and stone, with large breasts and heavy, pregnant, motherly bodies. The breasts were large enough to nurture many; an image of love and trust. The figures were often daubed in blood-coloured red ochre, and some held horned crescents representing the moon, making the connection between the waxing moon and the waxing womb.

The moon was a powerful image for the Stone Age peoples and embodied a central mystery, changeless but ever changing, constantly renewed. The moon was the first method used to calculate time, marked by its waxing and waning periods. The root word for moon still gives us our words for month, measurement, and menstruation. The moon has four phases (represented on Neolithic pots as a four-armed cross), three visible – waxing, full and waning – then three days in darkness. It seems to have been imagined that the dark phase was the invisible dimension where life gestated; the place where renewal and rebirth occurred. Life begins in darkness; the seed entering the earth emerges from it as a tender plant in the spring. Likewise, the seed of life enters a woman and her baby grows in the shelter of her womb. In the darkness of the tomb, the soul moves towards rebirth.

From 30,000 to 10,000 BCE the cave seems to have been the ultimate sacred place, a sanctuary of the Goddess and a physical representation of her womb- the source of her regenerative power which brought forth the living and took back the dead. On the exterior walls of the cave, images of the Goddess were sculpted; on the inside of the cave, stones were placed representing the souls of the dead who would be reborn there. Animals were painted on the walls so that the spirits of hunted beasts would be placated and renewed. This idea persisted into the Megalithic period.  Among many other such structures, the passage grave at Gavrinis, Brittany, is aligned to the rising sun at the winter solstice, and to the rising moon. Spirals, swirls and other energy patterns are cut on some of the upright stones. Possibly the stones were believed to be the dwelling places of the ancestor spirits, who could be contacted through the stones when summoned. New Grange in Ireland is also aligned to the rising winter solstice sun, and the sun’s rays which flood the chamber at this time fertilises the sleeping earth, and the sleeping dead.

Valentina at Goddess Conference 2007

The Goddess was the goddess of the heavens, the earth, and the underworld of her womb. There are many images of the Goddess as a snake, or depicted with snake patterns over her womb. The snake symbolises the waters of the dimension beyond, the fourth phase of the moon, the powers of regeneration. The umbilical cord connecting the child to the mother has the form of double snakes, and this may lie behind the concept of the double maze connecting this world to the next. The snake was observed to hibernate in the earth, and emerge to shed its skin and regenerate itself, thus it became a symbol of renewal and rebirth. As the Goddess of the Heavens, the Great Mother was depicted as a bird, which travels the sky and roosts on the waters or the earth, and thus can journey through all the realms. Sometimes the body of Goddess statues was egg shaped or carried eggs, or the womb was depicted as an egg.

Just as the breaking of the waters of the womb heralds the life to come, the Goddess was also believed to be the source of the water that fell from the heavens as rain and which welled up from the earth – her body – as springs and rivers. This ancient association persevered for millennia. Wells and springs were named after goddesses such as Anu, Elen, Brigid, and Danu, later to be Christianized as St Anne, St Helen, St Bridget, or preserved in the names of rivers like the Danube.

The development of agriculture freed people from the uncertainties of a hunter gatherer lifestyle; they could settle in one place, cultivate the soil, breed cattle and develop crafts. More than ever, the Mother Goddess presided over the whole cycle of planting, growth, and harvest: the bringer of life, death, and rebirth. Agriculture was probably discovered and developed by women; the harvest season was presided over by Virgo, the virgin mother of the corn.  She was visualized as a maiden holding an ear of wheat marked by the bright star Spica. It is possible that the cultivation of grain dates back to c.15, 000 BCE in the Age of Virgo- earlier than is usually thought- since grindstones, grinders and grain-cutting sickles have been found in Egypt dating from c. 15-16,000 BCE.  The constellation of Virgo is associated with many harvest goddesses including Isis, Ceres, Ishtar, Baalita, Inanna (meaning ‘Queen of Heaven’) and Demeter.

Sometimes the ancient Goddess was portrayed as one being with two heads, an image of the source and its manifestation as one and the same: mother and daughter. This ancient pattern is seen in the story of Demeter, the Greek corn and harvest goddess, and her daughter Persephone (or Kore); the first written reference to the Demeter was in the thirteenth century BCE. The version of her myth that we have today has had male personalities added, but the thread of the original tale can be discerned.

Kore (or Persephone) was picking poppies when Hades, king of the underworld, abducted her. She was taken down to his realm and forced to stay there as his bride. Demeter sought her all over the length and breath of the world, while the earth became barren and sterile as she neglected it. Winter ruled. Then at last, overcome with weariness, she sat down for nine days and nights while the gods caused poppies to spring all around her feet. Breathing in the soporific perfume she fell asleep and rested. The gods took pity on Demeter and decreed that Persephone could return to her mother providing she had not eaten anything while in the underworld. Unfortunately she had eaten six seeds from a pomegranate: she would have to stay in the underworld for six months of the year, and this is why we have winter. When she returns to earth her mother rejoices and the earth blossoms.

The name Kore or Cer for a grain/earth goddess is echoed in many parts of the world. She is Ker, Kern, Kur, Kar, Kan, Kali, Kami-Musumi, Kanya, Kaya-Nu-Hime, Kedesh, Kenemet, Keres, Khamadhenu, Core, Kele, Ceres, Ca, Cabiro, Cailleach, Cel, Cer, Ceridwen, Car, Carman, Cor, and Cybele. She gives us our word ‘corn’ and her name is remembered in the Northern English/Scottish Border custom of making a ‘kern-baby’ or ‘kernababy’, a corn dolly bound from the last sheaf of the harvest. We find her name in the kernel (kern-el) of the grain. According to Robert Graves, cer derives from a Cretan word to do with bees, as cerinthos is bee-bread,cērinos is waxen and so on.  The name multiplied into the name of the Roman corn and harvest goddess, Ceres, meaning ‘spites, plagues or unseen ills’ and this aspect of the Goddess has to be placated- she can blight as well as give. The harvest goddess is also a goddess of death- she kills the spirit of the corn.

The oldest harvest cult is that of the earth goddess. References to it are almost completely obscured in later myths, but occasionally can be seen shining through. In Norse myth Loki steals the golden hair of Sif (the corn). In Ireland, Macha was similarly described as golden haired and was honoured at Lughnasa, the start of the harvest.
Sometime during the 5th millennium BCE, people began to raise stones to form circles, alignments, and burial chambers. Chambers could be built to recreate the womb of the Goddess, activated by a shaft of sunlight entering it at certain times of year. At Midsummer, the shadows of a tall phallic stone crept into the stone circle womb to fertilize it. For megalithic people the earth was not an ‘it’ or a commodity, but a living being.
In some places, the Goddess was believed to have emerged out of the primeval waters as a hill or mound, often seen as the centre of the Earth, its navel or omphalos. The place was often marked by an obelisk or stone, such as the one at Delphi. A similar stone was placed at the druid sanctuary at Uisnech in Ireland and believed to be its navel. From the mound rose the first tree, the cosmic axis which connects the realms. The mound raised over the planted seed is an ancient image of regeneration, reflected in the idea of the burial mound raised over the Megalithic dead, and the pyramid raised over the body of the pharaoh.
In the Kennet Valley (Wiltshire, England) lies the massive man-made Silbury Hill, 130 feet high, built in Neolithic times nearly 4,600 years ago. For years archaeologists thought it must be a burial mound, but investigations have disproved this. Turves were used to construct the inner part of the hill in the Stone Age and remain within, with the grass and insects preserved. They were cut at the beginning of the harvest. Then over a period of about fifty years blocks of chalk covered the turf. It is a harvest mound, representing the womb of the Goddess. Originally, a water filled trench surrounded it, carefully constructed. The full moon in late July or early August (Lughnasa) would be reflected in the waters, so that it appeared a child’s head was emerging from the womb. As the moon moved up through the sky, it appeared reflected at the breast of the image, as though suckling. As the moon moved higher, the ‘milk’ was released from the breast as the moat reflected the lunar light. With the cutting of the umbilical cord (when the moon appears to detach itself from the hill), the signal was given to begin the harvest. Throughout the ancient world a mound of earth was symbolic of the Goddess, sometimes magnified into a mountain of the gods.

Initially the Goddess reigned alone. She had no son or lover. For many thousands of years the Goddess was seen as the single source which was capable of constantly generating and regenerating by her own power- the original meaning of the word ‘virgin’. There are many myths of virgin goddesses giving birth since the power of life was hers alone. Sometime during the seventh millennium BCE came the first recognition of the part males played in the act of creation. Images of the God appeared as horned animals, such as the ram, the bull, or the goat, and the phallic shaped serpent. Images of the sacred marriage of the God and the Goddess began to appear around 4,500 BCE. The god was the fertilizing rain or the light and heat of the sun.

During the Bronze Age the vision of the oneness of creation and the power of the Goddess became fractured and diversified. The Goddess retained the power of life and death, but she now had brothers and sisters, daughters and sons. She acquired many names and there were a variety of mythologies attached to her, but one was held in common: the Goddess acquired a lover who died and was reborn. The pattern of their relationship followed the seasons- they married in spring and their love caused the earth to flower and blossom. With the autumn her lover, the spirit of summer vegetation, died and descended to the underworld realm of the dead. She followed him there and released him again when spring came, and the cycle began anew. This story is reflected in the tales of Osiris, Tammuz, Adonis, Dumuzi, Baal, Jesus and many more.

The Goddess was sometimes visualized as the land itself and called the Sovereign Goddess because everything that happened upon it had to have her approval or it was doomed to failure. In many cultures the earthly king was deemed to rule only through with divine authority. His investiture included a symbolic marriage to the Sovereign Goddess or a real marriage to the queen who represented her. In Irish myth Niall and his brothers were out riding and came to a well with a very ugly hag guarding it. They asked her for a drink, but she demanded a kiss from each in return. All the brothers refused but Niall said that not only would he kiss her, but that he would lay with her as well. He embraced her earnestly and found that instead of an old crone a lovely woman was in his arms. She told him that she was Sovereignty, and he was confirmed as king of Tara. The goddess of the land often has the dual form of maiden and hag (summer and winter).

Towards the end of the Bronze Age the settled Goddess worshippers were overrun by tribes of Aryan and Semitic descent. These warriors worshipped sky and thunder gods, gods of battle, fire and storm, a mythology which developed in the later Palaeolithic Age amongst these nomads who had to contend with a much harsher environment. The invasions had a dramatic impact on the Goddess cultures from Europe to India. The invaders were patriarchal, rode horses, herded cattle and prohibited writing. They appeared as Hittites in Anatolia, as Hurrians and Kassites in Mesopotamia, Achaeans and Dorians in Greece, and Aryans in the Indus valley. Wherever they penetrated they established themselves as the ruling caste. They introduced the idea of the opposition of light and darkness, rather than the totality of the older view. They introduced the idea that man was separate from the deity, and the deity was separate from creation. All that was good and noble was attributed to the master Gods, all that was the native nurture power of the older religion of the Goddess was related to the darkness, which became a negative concept.

In early Sumeria, Egypt and Crete, women played a public role, owning property and transacting business. Sisters and brothers inherited equally. After 2,300 BCE their status deteriorated. The Semitic tribes regarded women merely as the property of men. Brothers, husbands and fathers had the right of life or death over them. Daughters could be sold into slavery or exposed to die. Sons inherited all property. The Aryan peoples had no priestesses and regarded women as chattels.

The concept of the single male deity, a father needing no mother, gradually took hold. The role of the Goddess was denied, and in consequence the status of women was lowered. Christianity, Judaism and Islam converted the Goddess mythology into stories of evil, building churches over sacred sites, and declaring the old gods and goddesses to be demons, or where this was difficult, changing them to Christian saints, as the goddess Brighid became St Brigit in Ireland. Women became less than second class citizens in religion, some theologians even denying them souls. Even today, many deny that women can become priests – a vocation, intelligence, faith and dedication meaning nothing alongside the fact of possessing the wrong set of genitalia. This is a world view that has women as an adjunct to creation, a view that keeps her in her place. All that is male is glorified; all that is female is denigrated as unclean and unfit – too earthly for participation in the worship of a glorious, exclusively male deity who lives apart from his sinful creation. Of course, many Christians, Moslems and Jews are far more enlightened than this, but it remains a lop-sided view of spirituality. The English occultist Dion Fortune said that any religion without a goddess is half atheist.

The deep seated need for a female aspect to deity has persisted throughout the centuries. Denied a goddess who understood the patterns of their lives, their sorrows and their joys, women met this need through cults of various saints, particularly the veneration of the Virgin Mary. However, these saints are never whole women and only holy because they deny their female natures. Mary’s womanhood is repudiated by the church – her son was conceived without sexual intercourse, she gave birth with no pain and without rupturing her hymen; she lived with her husband as a celebrate. The message is clear – holiness is only achievable by denying normal human love.

In the twentieth century, men and women began to realise that female spirituality and the role of the goddess had been denied. Feminists and modern Pagans alike have striven to restore this balance, most recognising male and female spirituality in equilibrium, two halves of an harmonious whole. This world view regards humans as part of nature, children of the Great Mother, along with the Earth, plants and animals, all related in a single whole. The Goddess is revealed in manifest nature, part of it and part of us.

The feminine aspect of the divine has had many faces – goddesses of love and hatred, war and peace, birth and death, summer and winter, night and day, amongst thousands of others. It is time for us to reclaim the Goddess, to reclaim a balanced, harmonious spirituality, and to recognise the Oneness of being within all of creation.

This is the writing of Anna Franklin of

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The Path of Love

The Path of Love is a path towards peace, happiness and ultimately knowing your real self.  Your real identity lies in a core consciousness beyond the mind and ego.  When you move beyond your limited idea of ‘I’ or ‘me’ and you move into extending love to yourself and to all beings, then you are on the path of Love and the path towards uncovering the real you.

Love is Light made manifest.  In Vedic teachings we are given a beautiful image of a shrine in your sacred heart (your inner non-physical heart).  In this shrine or cave, burns a candle brightly.  Nothing can extinguish this candle.  It radiates peace and stillness and silence eternally.  ‘My love radiates like a bonfire.  It is focused on none and denied to none.’

To a seeker with a willing heart, this is a natural path that will unfold in front of you as you take each step.  No striving, no violence required, gently, gently does it.

The Path of Love is a divine marriage between masculine and feminine selves, through all levels of your being. This sacred marriage, the hieros gamos, takes place on the mental, emotional, physical and spiritual levels of your being;  it takes place between Soul and Spirit, Spirit and the Living Light.

The word enlightenment is used in many contexts and with many different meanings. If you look at it simply, it says en-light-en-ment, moving into the light or being filled with light.  Love is the manifestation of the Living Light. Moving into the light requires action (masculine) and being filled with light requires receptivity (feminine). You can look at it as a two-fold path of eliminating darkness and to bring in the light :  the light that is already there.

What do you expect from enlightenment?  Surely happiness.  When you have deep inner happiness, you need nothing else.  No external circumstance can affect a deep happiness that bubbles forth from within.  When you are happy, you are ‘in love’ with the world and all its wonders.  When you are happy, you seek nothing and you lack for nothing. Happiness is also called bliss, or Ananda.

The Path of Love will take you within, to the fountain of this inner happiness, the river of Light that flows through you without ever running dry, which is within you.

The process that leads to enlightenment is gradual and requires patience.  It does not deliver big pyrotechnic dramatics, but it does yield ever-increasing peace and self-acceptance and the purification of stress.

But none of this will be obvious to the one that does not live in awareness.  Awareness is your intuition and it is often veiled over by negativity in the mind; external distraction and the emotional response to stress.

Stress is caused by negative thoughts, and the emotional response to experiences that create fear in you.  We do not have a choice about what happens to us, but we do have a choice as to how to respond.  Every response and action by you, has a chemical reaction in your brain.  This chemical reaction can deliver serotonin, which brings you joy and a sense of well-being, or it can deliver disharmony which will affect all cells in the body.  This disharmony takes you out of alignment with your Source and it creates stress in mind and body.

Meditation alters the brain in many positive ways.  The main purpose and focus of meditation should be purification.  The physical effects of sitting quietly and going inward are many.  It activates the prefrontal cortex and stimulates the release of neurotransmitters, including dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin and brain opiates.  According to Dr Deepak Chopra dopamine is an antidepressant;  serotonin is associated with increased self-esteem; oxytocin is believed to be the pleasure hormone and opiates are the body’s pain killers.

Fears and anxiety are not merely psychological issues.  All emotions have a correlate in the brain and these manifest in your physical body as imbalances and disease.  Humans have memory and we remember painful occurences and fear them re-occuring.  We may bury these fears deep into our subconscious, but the body will manifest these hidden thoughts and beliefs.  We as humans are very adaptable and we adapt our behaviour and reasoning to hide these painful memories and fearful thoughts from ourselves.  We move into denial, rationalisation, escapism and anger, to avoid awareness of the unlived life beneath the surface of the mind.

But through the central nervous system the brain makes every cell in your body aware of those buried thoughts and fears. And through your inner awareness you can access what your body is telling you.  Your body and heart will communicate to you what is really happening beneath the surface.  But in order to have greater awareness, you need to purify your mind of the negative thinking and responses.

This is achieved through diksha, mantra, meditation, forgiveness and Love as action.

Diksha is a transference of energy.  This is usually between guru and follower, but you can receive Light directly from the Living Light at all times.

Mantra is the repetition of a sacred name or sentence. It is an invocation, containing a sacred syllable or set of syllables. A mantra has the power to awaken the divinity that resides in that vibration.

Meditation takes you into utter stillness.  In this stillpoint there is no thought, no intellectual movement and in short, no ego present.  When you stay in this stillness for long periods of time, the neural pathways are purified and eventually re-set to a new path.  Negative emotional responses can be removed and replaced with ones of compassion and acceptance.

You can choose your actions and responses.  When you are caught up in subconscious behaviour (also called the shadow self, the hidden part of yourself), you are often caught unawares by your own response and action.  You may find yourself sabotaging your own happiness and hurting others without your conscious choice.

Your heart is the barometer of your soul.  At any time you can listen to your heart and hear what it wills you to do or not to do.  As part of your action of choice, always consult your heart before you act on emotion.  Your heart is the doorway to experience empathy, compassion and love.  When the Sacred Heart of Compassion is awakened in you, Love flows through you and blesses the world and everything in it.

The next step of action that forms part of your sadhana (spiritual practise/application) on the path of Love, is bhakty.  Bhakty is the focused and committed devotion of your will, your heart, your body and your soul, to the Living Light and its manifestation as Love on this Earth.

The action of Love encompasses the above steps of sadhana (meditation, diksha, mantra and others) and this action will awaken the Sacred Mother, Kundalini, within you.  Kundalini is not limited to kundalini yoga.  Kundalini is the flow of the Living Light within you and it is acknowledged in all spiritual paths and many religions.  The ignition of the fire that does not burn, is known as Shaktipat, the descent of the Holy Spirit, Baptism of Grace amongst others.

When kundalini (Shakty) has awakened in you, your path intensifies. Through its intensity and inner fire, you are purified.  It is a blessing desired by all those on the spiritual path.  There are myths and legends around kundalini.  However, it is the Living Light that flows in you and the discomfort and inner pressure, spurs you on to go ever deeper into awareness and into Love.

You may also want to read my posts on Awareness, Acceptance and Surrender on and

Om Namo Bhagavate Mata

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I Am Michael – message on 11-11-11

On 11 November 2011 a small group of us gathered to make the most of the vibrational energies of the 11:11 doorway that was opened here on Earth.

Our gathering was one of silent meditation and contemplation.  After only a short while, Michael, the archangel announced his presence.  The energy was tangible and visible to the inner eye.  A deep sense of peace filled the room and all those present.   His words flowed through my physical body for 30 minutes.  No-one was prepared for this so no recording was made and as I was the channel I can only repeat the essence of his message.

“I Am Michael.  I am with you.  I always walk with you, despite appearances and despite the most stressful circumstances.  I Am the essence of your Being, which is Love.  You are living in a time of great change and at times, great destruction and chaos.  Many are challenged to open their minds and their hearts and to perceive with new eyes.  These challenges also bring up great fear and resistance.  A new wave has been created and at this time, it has not reached its highest peak.  But it soon will and you will face many storms.  Through all these changes, remember I walk with you.

I am closer than your own breath.  I am as close as your own heart.  Whenever your mind turns to fear and believes in separation, you can call on me and on your own Warrior of Light.  I serve Her, the Great Mother, the Divine Ma, Maryam, Mary and am here to assist all her children, regardless of culture, tradition, religion or creed.

Great changes are coming.  Both on the inner planes and in the physical world.  Bridges will be washed away and many towers and structures will disappear.  Know at all times that you are safe and protected.  Stay centred in the Ground of your Being and surround yourself with the wings of prayer.

I Am Micha-el, I Am Mikal, the Tower of Light.  

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Sacred Heart Diksha

The Sacred Heart Diksha has been received by a number of people, all of whom who have experienced deep feelings, healing and transformation.

The Sacred Heart Diksha opens the inner chamber of the heart and Love starts to flow. This Diksha has brought instant pain relief; wonderful clarity into disease and life-long pain; the untying of karmic knots and physical healing which has medically been declared a miracle and on-going spiritual transformation, growth and awakening!

A diksha can also be called an initiation or a blessing. It initiates the receiver into an aspect of spiritual energy. We are not dependant on others or even gurus or teachers to receive these blessings. We are always living within the Love and Heart of God and we can receive at any times. Often, in times of deep distress, the mind relaxes its grip on our awareness and the awareness of the blessings that are available to us, just flows in. At these times we are flooded with a deep sense of abiding peace and an infinite compassion for ourselves and the world.
Receiving a diksha from someone who ‘carries’ this energy, helps us over the bridge; it removes the stone from the entrance to the cave and the spiritual energy has the power to clear the cobwebs of our minds.

Such a diksha is the Sacred Heart diksha. It blesses the receiver with a deep sense of calm and ‘all is well with the world’. Life here in physical matter is a great mystery to us and it is one of greatest challenges of those who live with a spiritual attitude, to surrender the need to know and to understand. Whenever things change and you enter the unfamiliar, the mind becomes fearful and it wants you to fight or flight. It tries to integrate and digest what is happening. It tries to label whatever is going on. This labelling, however, creates great suffering as it binds you into a belief system with all its positives and negatives and all its shoulds and should-nots.

The Sacred Heart is a term for the Sacred Ground of your Being. It can be accessed through contemplation, meditation and breathing exercises (pranayama) and samayama. The Sacred Heart can be regarded as the Womb of the Divine Mother or the Sacred Embrace : the place where you find yourself supported and carried unconditionally.

When you surrender into the Sacred Heart, all is taken care of; your nervous system can relax, your adrenals will slow down and the fear will leave your mind. Obviously this takes practise and the building of faith. But once you have experienced this, the memory of Its infinite compassion will never leave you and it is easier to find your way back there.
Mother Mary has given the Sacred Heart Meditation which anyone can use at any time.


October 18, 2010

For twenty years I have had a severe pain, like a massive bruise,over my heart – right over the aorta. This was originally thought to be ‘costochronditis’ and then was simply accepted to be part of fibromyalgic pain. The pain has been there, day and night, every single day.
About six weeks ago, in response to something that Hetienne Ma Grobler had posted on Facebook, I commented “I have had severe pain over my heart for 20 years. Any ideas?” Ma responded to me and offered her help in a most gracious and loving manner.

I did not hesitate for one moment to be open to this. I absolutely believe that the right person comes into our life at the right moment – even from as far away as another continent.
Ma asked me for some details of my life which I shared with her. That I grew up in an abusive home and from a young age, learned to curl into myself to protect myself from severe beatings. She offered that she would send healing energy my way from across the ocean. I was receptive to this and open to receive healing.

 The result? For the first time in twenty years, there is NO Pain in that area of my body. Well, actually at times I do experience pain there and this is what I do. I acknowledge to myself that my heart is hurting, I name the specific reason for the hurt and I state what I am doing to deal with the situation and affirm that I am taking good care of my heart. And the pain goes away immediately.

May my ‘story’ inspire your own openness to healing.

Blessings to all of you!