About Rev. Pamela Lanides

Rev. Pamela Lanides is an ordained priestess of the Christian Divine Feminine. She is the mother of five and is expecting her seventh grandchild in May. She lives in New England with her husband, dog, cat and numerous fish.

Part II

 Continued from previous post:
    Many modern people outside of Christianity think it is terrible that Mary is known as the Queen of Heaven (again, because in Christianity, she is the Mother of the King and her son crowned her as Queen when she got to Heaven), but to be fair, there were quite a few goddesses who were known as the Queen of Heaven. So, again, there is a difference between borrowing titles and applying them to someone else, as the Christians did with Mary, and taking a person completely out of her own religious and cultural context as the F/M did with images of Mary in her glorified state and calling her Mari.
    So, in a nutshell, the F/M took Mary, the Mary who was now a glorified saint in Heaven, took her away from her Son, divorced her from her husband, Joseph, separated her from Her Jewish God and completely changed her story.
    They kind of did the same thing with Inanna. They took her name and the story of her descent, where she was descending to take over her sister’s domain and they divorced her from her husband and turned her into a sacrificial Daughter unless there is something here that I am missing.
   Anyway, this is all why, over the last few months, I have begun to wonder if it is right to worship a Goddess outside of Her cultural and mythological heritage.
   I think of Wicca. Some Wiccan Trads honor one cultural pantheon while other Trads mix and match gods and goddesses from different pantheons.  But never-the-less,  though Wiccans believe that all goddesses are the One Great Goddess and all gods are the One Great God, I have never seen them divorce their deities from their native cultures or from their original myths and try to fit them into a new culture and a new myth. They remain true to the original myths. 
     And in thinking of the native culture and myth…..while I have always taught that Dea is God in Her Own Right, in my heart, I have always believed in Sacred Balance and I did teach that, while trying to stay within the confines of Deanism. To me, Our Divine Mother God is God in Her Own Right because that is Her Eternal Nature. It is Her Nature to be God just as it is our nature to be human. But for me, that does not mean that She cannot also be Bride.
    Recently, I have been studying the Shekinah/Sophia/Lady Wisdom/Holy Spirit all of whom stem from Judaism and all of Whom are One. I won’t go into all of this so, if anyone has questions, I will be happy to provide links to books written by scholars on this subject. Now, it finally make sense to me as to why the stories of Sophia and the Kabbalistic Shekinah are nearly identical (of course, there is Jewish Gnosticism, too) and there is an Earthly (Daughter) Shekinah who is the World Soul, as well as the Soul of the Jews and Earthly (Daughter) Sophia and Heavenly Shekinah and Heavenly Sophia.
    My point is, both the Shekinah and Sophia are said to be Mother, Daughter, Sister and Bride. I think that is very beautiful and it is deeply meaningful to me. But I understand that this is a long way from how Dea is understood in F/M.
   In the past, trying to be Deanic, I was separating Mary from her son and her husband (Joseph) and her father (Joachim) and her God (Adonai). I was also separating Sophia from Her Consort, Her Syzygy, Her Twin Soul and I was ignoring the fact that one of Her most important aspects is that of Bride as it is with the Shekinah and there is nothing wrong with that. But with Deanism, it made me feel that there was something wrong with that. Like there is something wrong with Divine Husbands and Divine Fathers. It is one thing to say, I primarily worship Mother God because I have issues with the Father due to my formal religion or an abusive human father, ect. It is a different story to say He doesn’t exist.
     My point is, why is it necessary to separate goddesses from their Divine Consorts or their Fathers? Why separate the Planetary Powers from their syzygies, their Twin Flames, Twin Souls? If this is a part of their story, then why must we edit them out? Is that being faithful to their stories? To who they are?
     Maybe for a Divine Feminine religion that excludes the Male, where they have their own names for the Mother and Daughter…Mari and Anna and they have their own mythology for them along with their own rites and devotions for them, why not use their own unique images for them just as every other religion has their own unique images for their goddesses? Why do they have to borrow from everyone else? I have never understood this.
   There are so many gorgeous Mother Goddess pieces of artwork nowadays that are not tied in with a specific cultural goddess just as there are many female angelic paintings of non-specific angels. In recent years, in thinking about all of these things, I have often thought about how if I was a goddess, I would not want to be separated from my husband.
   I have thought it important to have separate worship for Our Mother and Our Father ..the Mother primarily in the home. But to deny the Father as if He did not exist, to deny the Divine Marriage of Father and Mother, the Bridegroom and the Bride as if being a Sacred Bride is somehow beneath Our Mother God and therefore, casts an aspersion on brides here on Earth, this is not for me. 
   I am and have always been a traditional, deeply conservative woman. I am a traditional wife to my husband and a traditional home-maker. I have conservative values and I have long realized that this places me outside the Deanic community. I tried and tried and tried to conform, but this is not who I am. 

Divorcing Goddesses from their Consorts, Bridegrooms and Fathers Part I

Disclaimer:   These are my own thoughts and to not represent the beliefs of anyone else.
  Within the Deanic/Filianic/Madrian religion, there is a desire to worship a goddess image for Dea, the Divine Mother God, Who has no male Consort or Father because this is a strictly Matriarchal religion wherein God and the entire Universe is considered to be Feminine. In its origins, the religion went so far as to teach than anyone who is male here on Earth, ‘returns to being female upon death’…so in other words, the Madrian catechism, where this teaching is found, does not believe that males are eternal spirits/souls in and of themselves.
   The desire is to have a Mother God Who is God in Her Own Right without Her Godhood being dependent upon being the Bride or Consort of a Male God. I don’t agree with the first paragraph, but I do agree with this last statement. However, you can have a Bride of God Who is also God in Her Own Right as I explain further on.
     It is surprising how difficult it is to find a Pagan Goddess who did not have a consort or a father, although there are some goddesses who are so beyond ancient, their origins and original myths have been lost to time. Hekate immediately springs to mind as does Artemis of Ephesus (who is not the same as the Greek goddess.) 
   I think one thing I have found difficult with the D/F/M religion over the years, which probably has to do with their original beliefs/attitude towards the male race…is that they excluded males when males were not convenient. For example, they used the fictional account of the Titans as the basis for the Janyati….which was fine at the time, but according to the religion, you would never know that Eurynome did not just create by herself, but rather she was impregnated by the Snake she created from the Wind, nor would you realize that in the story, Eurynome created the Seven Planetary Powers (Titans) as male/female pairs or syzygies, just as in Gnosticism, but the male Planetary Powers, in the D/F/M are ignored as if they don’t exist. Again, I understand why this was done, this was supposed to be a strictly feminine religion, but I’m no longer certain it was the right thing to do.
     I have always been a bit confused as to the F/M practice of…well, on the one hand, they created their idea of a Trinity, Mother, Daughter and Absolute. And that is fine. Then they created a Mythos for both Mother and Daughter (even though they borrowed a lot from other sources) and they wrote the beautiful Teachings of the Daughter scriptures. They already had everything they needed. So, what I have been wondering is…why didn’t they just leave it at that? Why didn’t they artistically create their own images for the Mother and Daughter and for the Janyati? Why did they have to borrow Images from Christianity and so many other cultures while at the same time, divorcing those goddesses from their consorts, separating them from their mythologies and families while inserting them into a new story and claiming that the new story was actually the original story? The more I think about it, the more I feel that it really wasn’t necessary. They already had their story.
     I have spoken about this often, but it is relevant to this post. They use so many goddess images from other cultures and mythologies as suggested images for the Janyati, but Mary is not the Planetary Power of the Moon nor was she the Planetary Power of Jupiter. Sophia  and Khokmah are not the Planetary Powers of Mercury. 
    This was not necessary. There are many beautiful pictures non-specific female angels that could be used instead of taking things from other cultures and turning them into something they are not. If a goddess is not considered to be Planetary Powers in their own culture, then, in my opinion, they should not be adapted as one for another religion. One has to ask, how would a Christian feel about Mary being worshiped as and image of the Planetary Power of Jupiter? How would a Jew feel about Khokmah being worshiped as an image of the Planetary Power of Mercury? I can’t answer for Judaism because I have never been Jewish. But I can answer for Christianity. By the way, Powers is one of the angelic choirs and the Planetary Powers are usually angels.
    Anyway, if using Khokmah and Mary as Planetary Powers is not offensive in their cultural religions, then fine, but what if it is? Christians would find this offensive. Because of this, I guess I feel more comfortable with the male and female angelic Powers.
   Even with the “Ascended Mari” as she is called in the DFM….I really had difficulty with that until recently.  A few months ago, I finally understood better what the F/M were teaching about why they were using the Glorified Mary as their Image for the Mother in an All Feminine Trinity, but the more I thought about it, the more I realize that I still have problems with it.
    I know that the Church borrowed imagery and titles from Isis and perhaps Diana and applied them to the Glorified Mary (Mary after her bodily Assumption into Heaven), but what the Church did was different than what the F/M did with Mary.
    (As an aside, Mary never Ascended into Heaven like Jesus did. I’m not certain why the DFM refers to her thusly. Jesus ascended into Heaven. Mary was assumed into Heaven where she was crowned Queen of Heaven by her Son, the King. This is where the Fifth Mystery of the F/M rosary come from, the Assumption of Mary, but the F/M changed the original teaching about it to mean something else.)
   The so-called “Ascended” (Glorified) Mary was not Diana. She was not Isis. They shared titles, that is all. Mary wears a crown of stars with the moon under her feet because that is in the bible…in Revelation, it is not because Christianity was borrowing that from other goddesses.
     The Undivided (the first thousand years of the Catholic/Orthodox) Church never took either Diana or Isis and claimed that they were the Mother of Jesus. Again, Mary was historical. For two thousand years, to the Catholic and Orthodox Christians world-wide, including in many ancient lands like the pre-Muslim Middle East, Syria and Africa,  the Ascended Mary, as the Filianists call her, is the historical Mary after her bodily Assumption into Heaven. After her Assumption, she is in her glorified body just as one day, as Christianity teaches, we will all have a glorified body. So, the attributes they give to Mary are there to show her in her glorified state which will be available to all Christians. New Age people would understand this as being…she is in her high density body because she is now in the Pleroma. Her incarnations are over.
 

Yet Another Apparition where the Brilliance and the Beauty of Our Lady was Undescribable

 The Basilica of the National Shrine of Our Lady of the MM

Recently, I have been writing about how both Our Lady of Lourdes and I believe, Our Lady of Fatima, initially appeared to the Seers looking quite different than the usual depictions of the Blessed Mother Mary. Especially in the case of Our Lady of Lourdes, where rather than sculpting the statue according to the description given by St. Bernadette, the artist portrayed her in the manner of similar long-standing iconic images of Our Lady. Now, I find that it was the same with Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, aka Our Lady of Grace.

A mysterious child was at the foot of her bed and asked her to get up. “The Blessed Virgin is waiting for you.” Catherine dressed and followed the child who was “bringing rays of brightness wherever he passed.”

Having arrived in the chapel, St. Catherine stopped near the chair used by the priest in the sanctuary (current location of the statue of Saint Joseph).  She then heard a sound “like the rustle of a silk dress.”  Her little guide said, “Here is the Blessed Virgin.” She hesitated. But the child repeated in a stronger tone of voice, “Here is the Blessed Virgin.” In a single bound, Catherine was at the feet of the Blessed Virgin, seated on a chair and rested her hands on the knees of the Mother of God. The Chapel in France

When St. Catherine Laboure was asked if it was the Virgin who had appeared to her, she replied that she wasn’t sure. She said it didn’t look like the Virgin. 

Later, She would say to her priest, “I am not able to say why, but it still seems to me that it was not she whom I saw. “The apparition so defied the young nun’s pious expectations of who Mary was, or ought to be, that she had to be told three times by the angelic figure who accompanied the apparition that this, indeed, was what the Virgin really looked like.” (1)  She described Our Lady as radiant as a sunrise in all Her perfect beauty. (Which reminds me of some of the visions of Holy Sophia.)

St. Catherine, to my knowledge, is the only seer who has ever touched Our Lady during a Visitation. During the first Visit, Our Lady was seated in a chapel. St. Catherine knelt next to her and rested her hands on the lap of Our Lady. It is said that they spoke for almost two hours.

 St. Catherine Laboure’

During the second visit, Our Lady was holding a golden globe which She said represented the world, but especially France. (This took place in 1830.) Catherine heard (Our Lady say), This globe represents the entire world, including France, and every person”. Chapel in France

In, I believe it was in Her third appearance, that She appeared to St. Catherine showing the medal that she wanted to be cast. On the medal, She holds Her Mantle out wide, as if encompassing all Her children beneath Her Mantle of Protection. The Mantle of the Blessed Mother has always symbolized the protection, love and mercy that Blessed Mary has shown for Her children through-out the ages.

When I was a young child in Catholic elementary school, we would often notice, during recess, the clouds above giving way to blue skies. We would point up and say, “there’s Our Lady’s Mantle!”

In the vision for the design of the medal, She stands on a globe because She is the Queen of Heaven and Earth. The crescent moon is at Her feet. The rings on Her hands emit dazzling, colored rays of Light which signify the graces She sends to Her children.  At that same moment St. Catherine heard a voice saying, These rays are a symbol of the graces that I pour out on those who ask them of me.” When asked why some of the rings were dark, She responded those were the graces for which people forgot to ask. (2)

Circling the oval of the medal were the words, O, Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to Thee. The dogma of the Immaculate Conception would not be proclaimed until decades later.

Our Lady said to St. Catherine:

 When Mary spoke to St. Catherine, she said, “Have a medal made according to this model. For those who wear it with confidence, there will be abundant graces.” 

 Originally, it was the medal of the Immaculate Conception, but so many miracles began occurring that it began to be known as the Miraculous Medal, by which it is still known, today.

Prior to the heretical devastation of Vatican II, there was hardly a devout Catholic who did not wear the medal of Our Lady, the one She, the Queen of Heaven and Earth, gave to us. Wearing Her medal and carrying our rosaries with us, we always felt protected by Her. We were aware that She covered us with Her Presence every single moment of every single day. 

In the month of December 1830, during meditation, Catherine again heard the rustling sound, this time behind the altar. The same image of the medal appeared near the tabernacle, slightly behind it. “These rays are the symbol of the graces that the Blessed Virgin obtains for those who ask them of her…You will not see me anymore.” 

  Chapel of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal in France

St. Catherine initially did not receive the needed cooperation to have the medal of Our Lady cast, but by the Fall of 1834, there were already 500,000 medals in existence. Within a year, a million. Within five years, ten million. By now….literally billions. 

St. Catherine wished to remain anonymous during her life. It was not till she was near death that she revealed that she was the visionary of the medal of miracles.

(A medal/religious pendant should always be blessed. They are not allowed to be sold already having been blessed. That is considered simony, the selling of blessings, blessed objects, sacramentals (and by extension, the sacraments).

 

1) The Way of the Rose

2) miraculousmedal.org

There’s Something About Eve

 

(Zoe-Eve was birthed through a Drop of Light onto the Water. Name of painting possibly connected to the Soul of the Universe.)

    What did the Madrians/Filianists know about Eve? Back in the 1970’s, I’m not sure how much was known about the Nag Hamadi texts or if the original Madrians could have known about the Divine or Spiritual Eve (Zoe-Eve), the Daughter of Holy Sophia. Perhaps they did.

    While Filianism briefly touched upon the possibility that Earthly Eve might have been a Divine Creatrix, the Madrians used the Name of Eve, Havah, in a very powerful way. They used the part of the Tetragrammaton which means Havah, Iot ‘E Voh, as a powerful blessing during both the Rite of Sacrifice and in the Great Rite, the Madrian liturgy. And words/phrases related to Eve/Havah were used by the priestess during the most miraculous part of the Communion Rite. I don’t know if they ever wrote anything further about Her and if not, it only creates a deeper puzzle as to why they would use Her Name in this most spiritually efficacious and quite astonishing manner.

No one knows for sure exactly how the Gnostics came to be, although evidence suggests that they were a highly educated Jewish sect strongly influenced by Platonism. They shared a suspicion of orthodoxy, a love of wisdom, and a faith in finding one’s own way to the divine.  Eve Reconsidered.

Unfortunately, early Gnostic Christians overlayed or completely rewrote some of the original Gnostic Texts. (The Wisdom Goddess, Rose Horman Arthur). Early Christians were known to hate women and say terrible things about the female race. While, in Gnosticism, women were treated in a more equal fashion, they simply could not leave Sophia and Eve alone. Early Gnostics enslaved Sophia and raped Eve. The demotion of Female Goddesses never ends. But Who does Eve say that She was?

   And I spoke thus….. “I am the foreknowledge of pure light; I am the thought of the undefiled spirit…Arise and remember…and beware of the deep sleep.” From the Secret Book of John. (Meaning do not forget who you are, why we are here or where you are going. The Hymn of the Pearl.)

In the article, Another Eve, the author clearly delineates the contrast between how the early Church ‘Fathers’ viewed Eve compared with how the Gnostics, in several of their gospels, understood Eve.

For thousands of years, women were made to feel inferior because Eve, our Fore-Mother, committed the act that would cause intense suffering for humanity for thousands upon thousands upon thousands of years, including, very specifically, the pain of childbirth. These stories were never meant to be taken literally. While there is some truth to the beginnings of them, these are stories that were written by men. And as time went along, the more they ranted and raved against Eve, the more you have to wonder, why? Who was She, really?  What were they afraid of?

Though Gnosticism is very far from perfect, perhaps the original Jewish writers gave us a glimpse of the Truth. The Creatrix, Sophia, had a Daughter and Her Name was Zoe-Eve. This Higher, Spiritual Eve, out of sheer Love, descended down through the Seven Realms and brought Life and the Light of Her Mother to all of humanity through Adam. She is our Divine Fore-mother. She is Our Ancestral Divinity. She is Saviouress. And in the very beginnings of the Madrian Faith, She was there and is with us still, in our Rite of Sacrifice, in our liturgy, in our blessings.

    Zoe-Eve brought the Life and Light of Her Mother to all the children of the Earth through Adam. Gaia Sophia resides with us as the World Soul, the Soul of Nature and the Wisdom of Nature (Sophia Natura). Mother Sophia, Lady Wisdom, dwells within our hearts as Divine Love.

   Dea surrounds us, envelops us, spiritually nourishes us and has never left us despite all the machinations of those who despised Her, raped Her, demoted Her and tried to make Her male. In several schools of Gnostic thought, the male came from the Divine Feminine and look how they treated their Mother.

For I am the first and the last.
I am the honored and the scorned,
I am the harlot and the holy one. 

                                                                                                      Thunder, Perfect Mind.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Lourdes

LOURDES

   The Lady of Lourdes had appeared to St. Bernadette as a young girl….meaning the Lady Who appeared to Bernadette was first described as a teenaged girl. I’m fairly certain that Bernadette initially described Her as wearing a skirt to her knees, ect.  When she saw the statue that was sculpted of her ‘Lady’, St. Bernadette expressed disapointment and indicated that the statue looked nothing like the Lady she saw. This is not the only time something like this has happened with young visionaries.

    Many of these seers (Bernadette, the children of Fatima, LaSallette, ect.), were mostly peasant children during the times when there was no radio, no tv, no internet and news did not always travel very quickly to the poorer (especially mountainous) regions of the countries where these apparitions took place.

     When Our Lady appeared before St. Bernadette in the Grotto at Lourdes, She said, I am the Immaculate Conception. Before the apparitions in the Grotto at Lourdes, Bernadette had never heard of the recently proclaimed dogma of the Immaculate Conception (a dogma not shared by Orthodox Christians, due to having different viewpoint on Original Sin.) This dogma of the Catholic Church is an often misunderstood dogma which means that Mary was conceived without the stain of original sin on her soul. 

    The dogma of the Immaculate Conception was officially proclaimed by the Vatican on Dec. 8, 1954. The apparitions at Lourdes took place four years later. I always felt it was too much of a coincidence that Our Lady appeared just four years later and proclaimed Herself to be the Immaculate Conception. Either the Church was making up what Bernadette was saying, or the Lady was appearing to confirm the dogma. However, one author has a very different understanding of what She meant by declaring Herself to be the Immaculate Conception.

   One of the authors of The Way of the Rose, a Radical Path to the Divine Feminine, is a former Zen Buddhist Monk who is dedicated to the Earth and ‘to the Lady by whichever Name we wish to call Her.’  As he points out, St. Bernadette never referred to the Lady Who appeared to her as the Blessed Virgin Mary, she always referred to Her as ‘the Lady’. (And recall, she was very disappointed when she saw the unveiling of the statue of Our Lady of Lourdes….she said it looked nothing like the Lady that She saw.)
    He also states, The problem was, Bernadette’s Lady did not say that She had been immaculately conceived…She claimed to BE the Immaculate Conception.  Had Bernadette reported the apparition’s words to a Tibetan lama instead of the French priest, she would have gotten a different response, He would have told Her that She was talking to the Womb of the Universe, complete, whole, and perfect-eternally uncreated within Herself.  He compares this to what God said to Moses in the Jewish scriptures, “I Am That I Am”. 
    It does make you wonder how often the Church has taken advantage of these children and twisted the messages to mean what the Church wants them to mean.

The Feast of the Holy Rosary

 

 Holy Rosary

October is known as the month of the holy rosary. Today is traditionally the Feast of the Holy Rosary.

The Hindu form of the rosary is perhaps the oldest known form of the rosary, dating to the 8th century BCE. The Catholic rosary was formally requested by Mary in an appearance to St. Dominic in 1208. She later appeared to Blessed Alanus and gave him the now famous Fifteen Promises to those who were faithful to praying the daily rosary. Blessed Alanus was translated to Heaven on Our Lady’s birthday, Sept. 8th.  Here is a concise history of the rosary showing how it took over a thousand years for the Catholic rosary to reach its final form.

The rosary has always been said to be the most powerful prayer after the liturgy. Madria Olga, of blessed memory, was a devotee of the rosary.  Here are her thoughts on the rosary along with the instructions for the original Madrian rosary.

Before the disastrous aftermath of Vat. II, Catholics never left home without their rosary beads in purse or pocket. Families would pray the rosary, together. Praying the rosary kept us connected to her, like a ladder of roses reaching up to Heaven. When prayed properly, it brings us into Her Presence. Unfortunately, the younger generations have been raised in a Church which cares more about what other denominational Christians think rather than what is important to Our Lady and so the use of the rosary has declined in recent decades.

The rosary itself is symbolized by roses. As stated by St. Louis de Montfort in this book, The Secret of the Rosary, each bead is a rosebud and when we offer the rosary, we receive a mystical crown of roses. The word rosary means garland of roses and every time we pray Her rosary, we are offering Her living roses of prayer.

Far from being ‘useless repetition’, contemplating the Mysteries of each decade brings us in closer union with Her as we immerse ourselves in each Mystery. We follow the ‘Way’ of Our Lady.

 Our Lady of the Rosary

In a majority of Her apparitions, Our Lady has requested the daily rosary (five decades.) It is hard to think of an apparition where She was not carrying Her rosary. Praying the rosary need not be difficult or time consuming. One decade a day takes minutes. Praying the mantra style as did the ancients by reciting just the first half of the Hail, Mary, takes about ten minutes out of our day. The full recitation takes about fifteen minutes. Can we take fifteen minutes out of our day to recite Mary’s prayer? 

I realize that in this day and age, the rosary is not a practice for everyone. But if you have not tried it, today is the perfect day!

For our Christian readers, a good explanation of the rosary may be found on this Traditional Catholic website. You do have to scroll all the way down for accompanying scripture readings.

 

The Truth is Simple

1784 processional banner of the Lisbon Holy House of Mercy depicting the Virgin of Mercy protecting all social classes; the first verse of the hymn is quoted underneath.

Beneath Thy Protection is the oldest known Marian hymn dating back to the third or fourth century. Translated from the Greek: Beneath your compassion, we take refuge, O Theotokos, do not despise our petitions in time of trouble: but rescue us from dangers, only pure, only blessed one. (O, Dea or O, Thea, may be substituted for Theotokos).

Those who have had Near Death Experiences have always shared with us that God does not care what religion we are, the only thing that matters….the one question we are asked when we die is…. how did you love? 

Love is the Essence of the All. Love is the driving force of the Universe. Love is the why of Creation. And Love is simple. It need not be explained by philosophers and theologians. It is inherent in every single one of us. We do not need to be taught how to love, why to love or how many different ways we can love. Love is simple such that even a child can understand it and Love is the greatest Truth that exists.

NDE’s have explained that when they reach the Light, it is brilliant beyond all comprehension, and yet, it is not too bright for the eyes. And the one thing they all say….every single one of them no matter their religious background….is that the Light is unfathomable, unconditional Love such as they never thought to experience. And when they return, they strive to live and share that Love in new ways.

From what little first hand knowledge I have of the Secret Madrians, they had left Lux Madriana and turned to the contemplative/mystical life. They taught and believed that the Truth is simple enough for a child to understand. They did not appear to have need of thealogical arguments or discussion. They concentrated on the one thing needful, love of Dea and love of Her children.

The greatest saints I know weren’t the Aquinas’s, the Augustines, the Gregorys, rather they were the Orthodox Fools for Christ, the St. Marys of Egypt, the Padre Pios; the French priest of the countryside who continued to serve and protect his people despite the threat of being executed during troubling times; the quiet nun who spends her day in prayer for the children of the Earth, the mother who lives her life in service of her family and of her Lady, the quiet gentleman who spends his mornings praying the rosary before Our Lady to begin his day. These people didn’t spend their day arguing philosophy and theology, they spent their day in prayer, contemplation, love and service. I really believe this is what our scriptures are teaching us. These are timeless teachings that have never failed humanity.

21: In thy work praise Her and in thy resting, in thy speech and in they silence. 22: For thou wert made one with Her and this is thy true estate. It is good for a maid to till the soil, but it is better to live with her Lady.  The Pillar of Truth.

This very much reminds me of Marian teachings, especially what we learned through the Total Consecration to Mary. Everything we did during the day, each word we spoke, each service of Her children, were to be performed through Her, with Her and for Her. (The motto was to Jesus through Mary.) When we live each day in union with Her, that is when our beliefs ring true, not through arguing about human-made theology or philosophy, human words, human opinions. This is something that I once knew, had clearly forgotten, and am remembering once again.

I have learned, over time, that each one of us is so different, each of our Soul Paths to Deity are so unique, that one size definitely does not fit all, even if we are members of the same religion. This is why there are so many schools and denominations of all the religions which have withstood the test of time. We cannot expect others to believe in the exact same way that we do. Like each snowflake, we have been created to be singular in this world. But we do have a shared experience in Her Love.

In the Near Death Experience of Mellen Thomas Benedict, he was shown a mandala of souls encircling the world. Each of us has a vital place and purpose here. And that purpose isn’t to strive to be like everyone else, it is to be ourselves, the way we were created, to follow our own Path wherever that may lead.

The person, no matter their beliefs, no matter their religion, who spends his or her day in quiet prayer, contemplation, love and service is worth more, in my mind, than the greatest theologian who ever lived. 

Love of Dea flows through our service to others. Service to others can take place in many ways such as service to our families; praying for our world and for others; being kind in the work place; offering donations to places like Exodus Cry or helping animals, volunteering at soup kitchens, offering the Sacraments, there are all kinds of ways to serve no matter our station in life, but the ultimate way to serve is in the simplicity of Love.

Yes, philosophers and theologians have their place, but we must always remember, words are human and fallible, it is Dea Who is Divine and infallible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Glorified Mary is Universal

Our Lady of Zeitun, approved by the Coptic Church. Witnessed by millions from many Faiths for many weeks. She has appeared in different ways, she moved, doves flew around Her. This was in the 1960’s, there was not the holographic technology in place for something like this. Here is the full story.

The above mentioned article brought to mind my own recent ‘coming home’ to Our Heavenly Mother, Mary. She was truly Our Mother Who was always with us and Who never failed us. The (Feminine) Holy
Spirit entered Her during the Conception. We never heard that the Holy Spirit left Mary. 

This does not mean that we believed the human Mary was divine, but Our Holy Mother Spirit was with Mary in a very special way. The way Mary was presented to us after Her Assumption, it was clearly goddess imagery and I believe that subconsciously, that was how She was perceived by many of us within our hearts.

It is now well understood that the Holy Spirit of Christianity is Female. She is Mother Spirit or Mother God. Jesus, himself claimed this to be so in the Lost Gospel of the Hebrews and in the Gnostic Scriptures. Certain early Christian groups, including the ancient Syrian Church, understood the Holy Spirit to be female and this belief was included in the prayers of the ancient Syrian liturgy.

There are hundreds of well written articles on this subject and many good books for those who might be interested. One of my favorites was a simple, yet poignant book, My Mother, the Holy Spirit by Marian Widmalm. I find it to be beyond coincidental that this is the prophesied Age of the Holy Spirit and this is the time it is being revealed that She is Our Mother Spirit.

My contention is that had the RCC not hidden the truth of the Holy Spirit from us, they would never have had to turn the human Mary into a goddess, which they clearly did. But, the question in many hearts is, was Mary divine? Was She the incarnation of Our Holy Mother Spirit? Lady Wisdom? Divine Sophia? There are many who believe so. Certainly it has been a longstanding belief within certain Russian circles that Mary was the incarnation of Holy Sophia/Khohmah/Lady Wisdom.

Our Lady of Grace                                                    Our Lady of 

(notice the crescent moon)                                       Guadalupe                                         

The Church was blatantly schizophrenic about Mary. On the one hand, She was presented to us as the Queen of Heaven (a references from Classical Paganism).  And she replaced the goddess Maia as Queen of the May. She often wore a crown of stars with the Moon beneath Her feet. As Our Lady of Guadalupe,  the miraculous image She, Herself gave us, Mary was clothed with the Stars and was more powerful than the sun.

Through the centuries the Glorified (post Assumption) Mary has wrought miracle after miracle after miracle. Huge miracles, including where entire peoples were saved from invasion through the power of the rosary and small miracles too numerous to count. 

Like Isis, She is known by hundreds of Names, all with a miraculous story behind them. Our Lady of Victory, Our Lady of Good Hope, Our Lady of Mercy, Our Lady of Ransom, Our Lady of Lourdes, Our Lady of LaSallette, Our Lady of Grace, Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal…the list goes on and on and on. 

  She (along with Holy Sophia) is known as the Queen of Angels. 

She is known as the Mystical Rose, the Morning Star, the Star of the Sea, the Hope of Sinners, Our Lady of Prompt Succor. She was all Mercy where Her son was also Just Judge. We crowned Her in May and carried Her in procession around the world. We offered Her roses and Mary gardens. We lit candles before Her lay roses at her feet. We prayed our novenas and our rosaries. Her rosary was ever in our hands, our purse or in our pockets. Devout Catholics never left home without them.

While many might wear a crucifix, it was the Miraculous Medal that everyone wore. And it was called miraculous for a reason.

Her many hymns sang of Her glories:

Daily, daily, sing to Mary
Sing, sing, my soul, her prayers due
All her feasts, her actions worship
With the heart’s devotion true
She is mighty to deliver
Call her, trust her lovingly
When the tempest rages round thee
She will calm the troubled sea.

And the first two stanzas of one my my favorites, Hail, Holy Queen (Salve Regina means Hail, Queen):

Hail, holy Queen enthroned above, O Maria.
Hail, Queen of mercy and of love, O Maria.
Triumph, all ye Cherubim;
Sing with us, ye Seraphim.
Heav’n and earth resound the hymn:
Salve, Salve, Salve Regina.

2 The cause of joy to all below, O Maria.
The spring through which all graces flow, O Maria.
Angels, all your praises bring;
Earth and heaven, with us sing;
All creation echoing: 
Salve, Salve, Salve Regina.

Only in the last verse is Her son finally mentioned.

Interior Church Shrine

Pre-Vatican II and the Novus Ordo, every Church had a beautiful shrine to her, usually inlaid next to the main altar below which rows of devotional candles would flicker silently through the night. Living prayers of the people.

There was usually an outdoor shrine and no Catholic home would be complete without a statue or a small shrine in Her honor. 

  A Home Shrine to the Blessed Mother, Mary. 

Catholics have always been accused of worshiping Mary. And Catholics would always respond that there is a difference between the worship of God and the ‘dulia’ or veneration of saints, of which Mary is one of them. And yet, countless books have been written on Her Glories through-out the centuries.

 She is loved around the world.

Psalms (online)litanies and  Akathists have been written in Her honor. Her worship spans nearly two millennia. There is a 2,000 year old goddess Tradition hidden within RCC and Orthodox Christianity. Traditions that have become powerful over time. Generation, after generation, after generation of Marian worshipers precede us. 

She has been widely worshiped on all six continents for centuries upon centuries. She truly has been the UNIVERSAL Mother for the last 2,000 years. Where Jesus is our Brother, Mary is our Mother.

Stellar Maris, Rosa Mystica, Regina Caeli, Stella Matutina, Sanctissima, Panagia,    Sapientia, O, Thee of a Thousand Names, have mercy on us.

 

 

 

 

The Abusive ‘Sacrament’ of Confession

 No parent allowed. 

Having been raised Catholic and afterwards, becoming an Orthodox Christian, I have found that the sacrament of confession, as it is practiced in certain liturgical Christian Churches is highly inappropriate.

Having to confess ones sins to the priest is one of the main ways the Church maintains control over the people. I also feel it is abusive when little 7 year old girls have to confess their sins to a male priest. It is also abusive when any female of any age has to confess her intimate sins to a male priest who were often strangers to them.

The Church thinks it has the right to do this based upon one single verse in the bible, whosesoever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained. John 20:23, KJV.

Pre-Vatican II, we would enter the confessional and the priest would be behind a screen. So, that was bad enough that you had to go into a dark box as a little girl and tell all of your innocent secrets to a strange man. (My father was in the military, so we never really got to know the priests, personally.) Nowadays, a seven or eight year old little boy or girl has to go into a room by themselves and face the strange man…by themselves. Nowadays, who in their right mind should be allowing their children to do this?

 A modern day ‘reconciliation’ room where you can either face the priest or go behind the screen. Can you imagine a young child in there? There are no parents present. The child is alone with the priest. Read what this parent  who was a victim of abuse was told by the priest about this matter. (Read to the end.) These priests have no rights over your children. This is not what Jesus had in mind. A lot of sexual abuse has occurred in the confessional.

In the Orthodox Church, the practice is even more bizarre. The priest stands at the front of the Church (where everyone can see you) and covers you with his stole, like a tent while you confess your sins.

I think the Protestants have the right idea about what Jesus meant in John 20: 23. Other than that, there are liturgical churches where the priest offers a general forgiveness during the liturgy. This would be the most correct manner, in my point of view, of offering the sacrament.

Penance is another form of abuse although in these latter times, rather than the severe penances of centuries gone by, modern penance usually takes on the form of extra prayers in the Catholic Church or an overload of extra prayers and a banning from communion in the Orthodox Church. I remember one time my 10 year old son was banned from communion for six weeks in a Russian Church (not RCOR) because he had listened to a rock and roll tape.

There was another woman in this Church who had been banned for three years from communion. I could not imagine what that poor, obviously faithful and pious woman could have done to deserve such treatment. This was not the Mercy of God that Jesus had promised. This was extreme control and abuse.

A story was told of a canonized saint had appealed to the priest in the confessional that her husband was physically abusing her only to have the priest tell her that she must stay with her husband and that through her suffering and piety, her husband would be converted. This is the reason this woman was canonized, because she stay with an abusive husband. (Canonized married women, in the RCC, are extremely rare.)

The confessional, whether Traditional, where the person at least has some privacy from the priest, or what is even worse, the modern where the penitent has to face the priest, is a place of fear, anxiety for the penitent and extreme over-reach on the part of clergy. They have no right to know the intimate details of a person’s life, especially not those of a member of the opposite sex. Nor do they have the right to listen to the ‘sins’ of little children.

This dangerous and abusive practice must stop,

The High Feast of Rosa Mundi

 

Fire Rose

Today is the High Feast of Rosa Mundi (Rose of the
World) aka Rosa Caeli (Rose of Heaven) in honor of Our Divine Mother God. The Fire Rose is one of our sacred symbols indicating that Our Lady is the Fiery Rose Flame within the temple of our hearts. 

Today is a joyful celebration of the Fiery Love of Our Divine Mother and our ultimate assumption unto Her at the end of our incarnational cycles. It is a day that we may shower Her with roses, the queen of flowers, chant lovely hymns and celebrate with feasting and bonfires. 

There is no closer bond than that between Our Divine Mother and ourselves. She is always with us, we are never alone. She exists within and without. Above and below. She envelops us within the Protection of Her Mighty Mantle and showers Her Grace (Divine Energies) upon us. She is always there to guide and to help us. She is both Transcendent and through Her Holy Daughter, Immanent. There is no place in the world, in the cosmos, where She is not.

It is the Living Stream Goddess, Holy Sophia, Who is known as the Rose of the World, made famous by the Russian Mystic Daniel Andreev who taught that the Golden Age would return through Sophia. That it would be Her Age, the Age of the Rose of the World. 

While the Holy Daughter (Daughter Sophia or Zoe) may rightly be considered to be the (Rosa Mundi) Rose of the World through Her Role as the World Soul, Our Divine Mother is Rosa Caeli (Coeli), the Rose of Heaven. So, today, we look forward to the Golden Age of the Rose of the World while we celebrate the Love, Grace and Beauty of our Heavenly Mother through the heart-flame of Her love.

As my Christian bishop once said, we ascend unto the Father through Jesus and we are assumed unto the Mother through Her mercy.