Saturday, July 18, 2009

Meditating on Images of the Divine Feminine and Sacred Union Is Healing

copyrighted by RUTH THOMPSON

Lifelong Healing

In my healing room, I surround myself with beautiful images of the Divine Feminine. These images shift my consciousness and remind me that I, too, am divine. And when that shift occurs I feel whole and my body does what it knows how to do and heals me.

I have a dove and a chalice; paintings and statuettes of Mary Magdalene, Kuan Yin, Mary Magdalene's daughter Sarah (who comes to me as Tamara), the Virgin of Guadalupe and Mother Mary; Mother Earth paintings of deserts and rivers and rainbows and flowers -- and now this one called Revision by Ruth Thompson.

At first, I began to bring home images of Kuan Qin because I loved to look at her. As I read Joan Norton's and Margaret Starbird's books about The Mary Magdalene, and later as Joan added such beautiful pictures of Her to her blog, I consciously began to find pictures of Her to add to my walls and altars because I felt an inner peace and sweetness when I looked at Her.

After surrounding myself daily for years with beautiful images of the Divine Feminine just because I loved them, I saw Ruth Thompson's Revision a year ago. I felt like the inside of the top of my head was the Sistene Chapel ceiling, that it had suddenly been blown away, and that I had been given a new crown chakra!

It was a culminating moment of healing in which I felt completely new and changed forever into who I already really was.

As I reflect on it now, this culminating moment was the result of a simple, almost unconscious process that is both miraculous and obvious: My consciousness had been re-patterned by introducing images of the Divine Feminine and meditating on them. It's a process that I now consciously engage in.

Recently I learned from neuroscientists Andrew Newberg, M.D., and Mark Robert Waldman in HOW GOD CHANGES YOUR BRAIN that meditating for as little as 12 minutes daily permanently changes the structure of our brains by activating the "God spot" and feminine traits like compassion and acceptance.

I had been activating the Divine Feminine permanently by meditating upon her images. How powerful is that! And simple. Easy. Available. The way Divine Love should be.

In their research, Newberg and Waldman also trace how the God concept progresses in human consciousness. They report that young children in all cultures draw anthropomorphic pictures of God -- for them God is a person.

In our culture that person is male. In my Southern sub-culture, it was God-the-angry-father. The wrong image for me, making God unreachable because my other father, my personal father, was my abuser.

Consequently, until two weeks ago I only had one image of the Sacred Masculine in my healing room. It is of the son, of Christ as envisioned by Alex Grey. A dear friend, David Ray, who worked with me doing Healing Touch in the chapel at Hollywood United Methodist Church years ago, had given it to me. I love Alex Grey's work, and I think this image is gorgeous, but because of my wounding, I could not have put it in my healing room, if it had not reminded me more of my friend David than Jesus. Though I admit that over the years, as I meditated on Mary Magdalene, framed and on a separate wall from Christ, I felt her love and longing for him flow through me.

Now I have placed an image of the Sacred Union of Jesus and Mary Magdalene, called Kundalini Christ by Sofia Christine on one of my altars, the one I see across the room when I sit in my chair and meditate. I had the reproduction for over a year before I framed it and placed it there.

Copper Icon of Kundalini Christ
copyrighted by Sofia Christine

I feel like a spiritual version of Barbara Kingsolver's POISONWOOD BIBLE character Adah, the victim of hemiplegia at birth, who limped along and kept her silence until she was an adult and away from her family. Then by learning to crawl again, she taught herself to walk normally and to speak brilliantly.

Like her, I have abandoned my larger family -- my Southern religious subculture -- and crawled back to the foundation of the Divine in myself and rearranged it. I began as an adult, as all children intuitively begin – with anthropomorphic images of the divine – this time the Divine Feminine as a real woman, a really beautiful woman who loved.

Newberg and Waldman also report that the natural progress of the concept of the divine is to move from the anthropomorphic to the abstract. By age 16, 80% of religious children draw abstract images of the divine.

For now, I am consciously going in the opposite direction.

A sacred geometry image of the yoni

I had meditated on the abstract image of the yoni or vesica piscis () since I dreamed someone drew one on my palm about ten years ago. I had thought of the yoni as the image of the Divine Feminine, and it is that, but it is also the image of the sacred union. It is formed by the intersection of two circles, representative of two complete beings.

Now at 60, instead of abstract images of the sacred union, I am meditating on Sofia Christine's gorgeous human image of a loving Mary Magdalene with a loving Christ, so I can experience the traits of both the Divine Feminine and the Sacred Masculine and a balance of the two, as represented in the Divine Union, at the core of my being.

I want to start over, to grow up again with these two beautiful people-gods locked in their lover’s embrace at the foundation of my consciousness, so when I can walk upright without limping, I can continue to explore, experience, and refine my relationship to the divine within and bring this balance, this divinity, from inside myself each day into the world.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Bless this Body as Goddess in Every Cell

Copyright by Elenaray

Lifelong Healing

When I began promoting GROWING UP WITHOUT THE GODDESS, everyone I asked to help, answered with an embracing and enthusiastic “Yes!” Other writers wrote reviews for me, and independent bookstore owners sponsored readings and signings and stocked my book. The UNC-W women studies program invited me to speak, a friend set up private home readings, and a radio talk show hostess and a newspaper writer interviewed me. Independent reviewers accepted review copies and wrote reviews filled with praise. Women studies programs at the major colleges and universities in NC advertised my readings. The NC Writers area coordinator invited me to open mics, and abuse survivors in Greensboro at the HIVE set up a reading and discussion with me, coincidentally just a block away from the house where I was abused nearly 60 years ago. This was just the beginning.

The events themselves were small, but the women were big-hearted and though almost all were wounded women, too, they embraced my story, my book, and me. Those who were present as I read, and those who read my book in private, talked and wrote about how it held them spellbound and shook them up with its personal and collective truth-telling. They were so grateful that I have been given the courage to tell my story and to help break the silence about how our culture collaborates in sexual abuse.

Months into my book promotion, GROWING UP WITHOUT THE GODDESS still holds the vibration of “yes” when I ask for doors to open for it, and it has begun to open doors for itself. It is a mysterious, sacred journey that has a life of its own.

And that’s a blessing because I need time to re-read my chapter on lifelong daily healing practices and begin to re-balance from the over-doing and over-thinking I engaged in for a few months. If you are a mother or have been around a new mother, you know the physical exhaustion of those first weeks, months, even years. I gave birth to twin daughters 29 years ago, and I was sleep deprived for the first three years of their lives! That’s how I felt after three months of being the “new mom” of my book.

I’m really much more of an introvert than a book like mine (that tells all from A to Z about being physically, mentally, emotionally, and sexually abused) might indicate. I loved the people I met, but every time it was hard for me to find the public persona that could stand up and read. If you heard me read in person or heard me speak on the radio, you just would not know that.

But I am shy, and being in public took its toll. While I was with the book in the world, the Divine Feminine was present in me and through me. I loved the feeling of expansion and my shyness seemed gone forever – until the next event approached.

I’d like to tell you that I heeded the dreams I had along the way that showed I was not protecting my beautiful self and that I needed to consciously return to my inner life after these expansions the way I might after giving a healing session. But I did not pay attention.

I barely took time to write down my dreams even though they have been a source of divine guidance for nearly 30 years now. Only later after I had to stop did I take time to read the few dreams I had recorded. It was so easy then to discern the wisdom that could have guided me to slow down and go inward to allow the Divine Feminine to nurture me and to allow the Divine Masculine to constellate and protect me.

I’d like to tell you also that I was wise enough to stop and re-orient myself without needing my body to nudge me. But that’s not true. I pushed until my body pushed back with migraines and a painful sinus infection, which eventually made me “see” I was too much in my head, too left-brained in my planning self and sick of it and sick from it.

From my Healing Touch work, I know that a migraine happens when the vibrational system shuts down and will not allow life force to travel through it freely. Too much life force tries to enter the body’s bio-field through too small an opening.

Migraines mean, “Stop. Re-balance. Allow the chi, qi, prana, barata, grace or life force to flow freely through.”

I didn’t stop. I hardly slowed down until a shocking blow came to the right side of my car and the right side of my body in an accident. Because I was tired, I had let someone drive with whom I really didn't feel safe. With deep gratitude, I can report that no one was badly injured. I eventually walked out of the emergency room, shoeless, adorned with a neck brace, without a car, and with only “soft tissue” injuries.

I don’t believe that the accident was created by dark forces or vengeful entities, which slapped me around because I failed to take care of myself. I do know that sometimes I want to be perfect at whatever I am doing. I get an idea of what that means, and, loyal to the idea, I try to enact it, no matter how hard it is. I turn off my feeling function. I forget that I am not alone. Then I get unbalanced and keep doing things without stopping to nurture myself.

Now, I am healing from overdoing. Writing is a part of that process for me. And so are dreams.
I meditate. I pray with my Magdalene Rosary. I read healing books. I draw and paint. I cry sometimes. I watch the green grass grow while Grandma Rabbit eats the plants. I laugh occasionally. I do Healing Touch, use mudras, and do aromatherapy for myself.

Also, I've found it helpful to look at that shocking accident as though it were an inner world vision or a dream. . .

If the accident had occurred in a dream, I might ask myself why the right side of my body was injured. My answer to the “dream” question would include an understanding that in my daily waking life I was injuring my intuition, my feminine wisdom right brain, by over-ruling it, which is always life-threatening. My accident simply pictured this for me.

If the accident had occurred in a dream, I might also ask what it means that I let someone, with whom I did not feel safe, drive my car. I would remember that my natural self-protective instinct was impaired when I was abused. And when I stop doing the things regularly that rebuild my vibrational body and repair my instincts, I become the careless driver, driving myself too hard and endangering my life. That’s what over-doing and over-thinking do: they endanger and injure and sometimes destroy Life.

If the accident had occurred in a dream, I might ask myself why my car was totaled. I would say that my plan, my way of getting from here to there with what I am called to give the world, was not safe for me and so it could no longer be available. I would say I have to find another way, another container for holding and offering my gifts, that takes care of my whole being.

Oh, and did I say that in waking life, I was going to see a dear friend, who was at a social function at which I did not want to be? Only after I discussed this part with my therapist, did I understand. If this accident had occurred in a dream, I’d see that I needed to find a new way to be with that dear one and stay away from social events that I dreaded – at least, until my feelings healed and my energy returned so I didn’t dread them.

Now, I am at home. I wait and wonder what that very different mode for getting from here to there is and in what new way I will be in the world with my healing gifts and my book about healing, which, like my friend, are dear to me. Perhaps I just need more rest stops along the way.

Lately, I am using Frankincense to help overcome over-thinking and to create an opening for receptivity and to develop the intuition. Frankincense has begun to talk with me, and I have begun to listen. That’s what I thought I was going to write about today, but the inner guides took me elsewhere. I’ll share that really soon.

Copyrighted by Loveliestdreams

Bless my body, Goddess that it is in every cell – in every soft feminine tissue cell – for healing itself, for holding me in this dimension, and for nurturing me always with love.