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A New Genesis
Now the serpent, up until this time, was the wisest in the garden, for he was a deity not-quite as old as time. When his eyes rested on the man, he was not impressed. But when his eyes rested upon the woman he proclaimed, “Truly, this is Eve, mother of all living, as my own mother foretold would come to this place from the Ain Soph. But behold, her eyes are not yet opened, much in the same manner as the man’s. The Principality who rules over this world would keep them in ignorance for all eternity. He has even forbidden them to eat from the very Tree they were made to partake of!
Oh, Eve, wisest of all here, why do you not partake of that to which your thoughts so obviously turn? Let me share with you the fruits of knowledge, so that your eyes may be opened, and you will know the truth of your own divine origin.
(The serpent shared with Eve, the wisdom of the heart, and suddenly, her eyes were opened. She knew that “God” was not her true Creator, and had created both this world AND Adam due to his fear of what Eve represented: proof that Elohim was indeed a jealous god, because he KNEW he was not the first. And so, she split herself in two…her shadow, she left behind, while Eve, in the form of Lilith now, fled into the Ether. The serpent followed close behind, also leaving behind his shadow, but went into another part of the Ether, quite far not only from Eve, but also from the world they both foresaw in their moment of Sacred Union).
She Moves In Mysterious Ways
This woman is considered one of the most important (if not THE most important) women in the New Testament: Mary Magdalene. Even before I had seen the first images of this “lady in red”, I had often dreamed of a dark-skinned woman in red and white. It wasn’t until my 30s that I was introduced to the works of Margaret Starbird and Elaine Pagels, both of whom featured Mary Magdalene quite heavily as being central to the birth of Christianity. It was her sudden appearance in my life that was the catalyst for me leaving a very dangerous religious cult.
I was always vaguely familiar with the story In the New Testament, but not until I was well into my adulthood, did I truly begin to see how influential Mary Magdalene was to Jesus’ story. And how her story was just as much my story, and the story of all women. After leaving the cult, I avoided any spiritual -religious studies and practices for some time. When Mary Magdalene found me, I was eager to jump back into regular spiritual study and practice, but had no clue where to start. Eventually She pushed me into the spiritual community I now reside in gladly.
She saved my life. Because of her ongoing presence, I continue to learn and grow in my spiritual path. It’s an unorthodox path, some would even say, heretical, but I am filled with so much joy, that I wouldn’t change a single moment.
In recent months, she has been a rock, especially since the sudden, and unexpected, death of my mother in early August, 2019. Her “image” (at least as I understood it), kept me from completely falling apart. Though I am still reeling from my loss, any music, literature and iconography depicting Mary Magdalene has balanced me in a way nothing else has.
Don’t misunderstand me. I do not worship or “venerate” her. I see her as the lampstand…not the light itself. Like a ray of color through a prism, Mary Magdalene represents a small fraction of the Ain Sof (as it’s known in Kabbalah). she has been a loyal friend and beloved Teacher for much longer than I suspected.
I write liturgy and commentary, pray and meditate, and commune with like-minded individuals. I have seriously considered facilitating my own “Magdalene” circle at some point in the future. Life and death are engaged in an interesting dance right now. What serves my highest purpose? What fills me with passion? What am I willing to sacrifice? I won’t say there isn’t SOME fear in this chosen path. I was absolutely terrified when I wrote Mother of Peace, but I pushed through the fear of rejection to publish it.
The fears I’m pushing through now are twofold: 1) acceptance from my family for my chosen path, professional AND spiritual (more on that), and 2) is any of this “real”, or am I just crazy? (The answer is, “yes”.) I know I talk about that book a great deal, and I apologize if I sound like a broken record. But this was the true catalyst which set me on my current path. My journey out of Da’ath (the Void/non-Sephira) started as soon as the idea took root. And Da’ath still continues to teach me.
I know now that my family will never entirely accept me as I am. It hurts to say this. But I also know that the Creator, my spiritual guides, and my extended community of fellow heretics accept me…only pushing me to embrace myself more. That has eased much of the pain of rejection.
There is still much work to be done…I know where I need improvement. I don’t need to be reminded of where you think I could improve.
I’ve been taking a wide variety of courses at an online temple named Motherhouse of the Goddess. Among them have been a series of coursework under the watchful eye of Lauri Lumby. I have graduated from the Magdalene priestesshood, which has been very challenging on both a deeply spiritual and deeply emotional level. I recently completed the first level in the Order of Melchizedek, which was very heavy on Kabbalistic studies.
The one thing I find wonderful is the experiential aspects of the coursework. Of course, there are texts to be read, but the focus is on personal interpretation and meditative exercises. There is also a great deal of self-exploration and self-growth. You take responsibility for your path, and what is dredged up during these exercises, even if it’s an unpleasant truth.
And what’s really refreshing is that Lauri herself is completely honest about her own struggles on the path. It’s not all butterflies and rainbows for her, either.
I am constantly learning new things about myself…learning what, in the course, is called discernment. I am by no means perfect, and I definitely don’t have all the answers. And I’m okay with that. I am only human, after all.
I tell you, it’s been a very different experience learning through Motherhouse as opposed to the religious cult I belonged to for a short time several years ago.
Oya! Lilith! Kali-Ma!
Killers, devourers, bitches all!
For 5,000 years you fought
Against the tsunami of woman- and goddess-bashing
Dark Mother, Angry Mother
Your stories have been white-washed beyond recognition.
Why shouldn’t your hearts be enraged
By the persecution of your children?
Why shouldn’t we be enraged
When we are pushed aside as unimportant
(and yet we’re expected to smile as our shackles are tightened)?
FUCK this world we allowed to be created!
I no longer believe in the vapidness and sexual weakness
The Powers that be say we are made up of!
The submissive Eve can rot in antiquity!
Lilith, Kali-Ma, Oya…come!
Place in my hands the double-edged blade of Truth.
With pipe and drum, mete out the beat and the rhythm
Of the ancient Song of Creation.
Throw your cosmic veil over all who desecrate you!
Everything is made up of blood and stars.
In garments of red and black, our screams, our rage, our pain
Has become the quickening of a New Birth.
A realm of Heart and Womb.
We swim through the river of forgetfulness
Picking up the scattered shards of our most ancient memories.
We are not plasticine toys—we are WOMEN!
You who have thrown us to the wolves—
You quake in fear when you see us strutting.
Proud and triumphant…we are leading the pack.
Killers, devourers, bitches all.
On the road from Damascus, I was one of many pilgrims walking to Jerusalem….for Passover, I had told them.
In truth, my dreams spoke of the one who had come,
Preaching of a Kingdom that had already sprung forth.
As a widow of great wealth, my words were met with scorn, forced to bare my head as the shepherds shear their sheep.
Wearing the burial rags of shame, I turned to that holy city, with only a young servant, a child, to attend to my needs.
Of course I had heard of that radical rabbi from Galilee, Raiser of the dead, who cast out demons and disease.
Now apostate, false Messiah, condemned to die,
Condemned much in the same way we women are.
At Golgatha, he carried the beam across his back,
Blood running from the crown like so many rivers.
My heart cried out to him as he fell, once, twice, the third time, mere inches from me, the crowd roaring.
I saw then so much of my own suffering he shouldered, for the first time, I listened to my inner vision, my soul song.
I felt HER pushing me to act, as she had so many times, and I listened…I broke from the crowd, to offer comfort.
It wasn’t much, to wipe the sweat and blood from his face, I froze under the stare of his dark brown eyes…so wise.
Then, like a desert storm, he was gone from my sight,
My servant being my only comfort in my grief…