(Poem) picts by Barbara Mor

Mago Academypicts

they tattooed the animals on

their skins badger hawk bison

boar fox images cruaths of

forests earth ice woad and

blood inked in our flesh and

thus took on their powers

wild horse white-maned herds

of wind of rain pinestorm howls

wolverine bear raven fish mouse

naked among trees and caverns

ancestors the cruaths spread over

their immense bodies constellations

of beasts in the flesh of blue

stars over the universal

imagination of night they hunted

the animals of this dream

owl deer river worm and fire

dragons of vision inside the skull

and thus became their powers

where are noble animals

coyote the wolf  listen

to them howl a long white

spray of utter stars of pure

grief out of night the

nebulae of lost spirits

explodes flows from throats of

animals who cry upward

from the roots of earth

we die the air is extinct

the tribes of water of

fire and forests compressed of

a billion years of mineral

bones wild hunger where

we were in the solitude of fur

muzzles and bellies of milk

in dens of rock where all things

curl to sleep dream the

earth extinct the home

of noble animals in a

huge night

howl in a nightmare of

electric sleep scream of streets the

throat of darkness slashed

noise of engines, razor hunger

crashed into eyes as dinosaurs

once crashed into trees and

stars and died there became

the oil of crushed black time

flows now from earth

wounds the same beginning

and end at speed of night

wheels roll over and over

the animals their cries are

flat the brains dead line

down the middle of streets highways

spun out into stars one-way

DNA unwinding entropy

of hearts horses wolves of

cars cougars mustangs they

gallop in metallic bodies of

death over the cliff

of our staring eyes

can you believe the night

is ended can you

receive the extinction of

stars

Read Meet Mago Contributor, Barbara Mor.

We, the co-editors, contributors, and advisers, have started the Mago Web (Cross-cultural Goddess Web) to rekindle old Gynocentric Unity in our time. Now YOU can help us raise this torch high to the Primordial Mountain Home (Our Mother Earth Herself) wherein everyone is embraced in WE. There are many ways to support Return to Mago. You may donate to us. No amount is too small for us. For your time and skill, please email Helen Hwang (magoism@gmail.com). Please take an action today and we need that! Thank YOU in Goddesshood of all beings!

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Meet Mago Contributor, Jeri Studebaker

JeriJeri Studebaker is author of Switching to Goddess: Humanity’s Ticket to the Future.  She writes about ancient goddesses and has degrees in anthropology, archaeology and education.

 

We, the co-editors, contributors, and advisers, have started the Mago Web (Cross-cultural Goddess Web) to rekindle old Gynocentric Unity in our time. Now YOU can help us raise this torch high to the Primordial Mountain Home (Our Mother Earth Herself) wherein everyone is embraced in WE. There are many ways to support Return to Mago. You may donate to us. No amount is too small for us. For your time and skill, please email Helen Hwang (magoism@gmail.com). Please take an action today and we need that! Thank YOU in Goddesshood of all beings!

(Click Donate button below. You can donate by credit card or bank account without registering PayPal. Find “Don’t have a PayPal account?” above the credit card icons.)

(Essay 2) Gestating Thealogies Through Birth by Nané Jordan

Alone in myself with my baby in the water tub, the water guided me into a deepening trance of ‘open and give over mamma,’ holding and relaxing me in its fluid substance. I was a babe held in the womb of some Great Goddess, even as I held a babe in the amniotic waters of my own womb. And open I did. Instinctively my hands were working with each sensation, palms up and open, hands out of the water and raised, like a salutation to the Goddess herself, ‘yes I feel your presence Mother as I am Mother now.’ These actions were what came to me in the tub as I did what is known as ‘active labour.’ I would more describe it as a multidimensional dance of the universe, a meditation beyond meditations. I found myself hissssss-ing as each sensation built low down and then up along the sides of my womb. There was no mistaking this ssssssnake-like ssssssound that guided my body into birth, my palms stretching into an ancient salutation of forces greater than myself yet no bigger than myself.

Nané Jordan, Birthdance, Earthdance, 2002, p.

‘Thinking’ about birth: Some critical signposts along the thea-logical way

“Birth was at one time important in a symbolic way to theological visions, mostly with a view to depreciating women’s part, and rendering it passive and even virginal, while paternity took on divine trappings.”

(Mary O’Brien, 1981, p. 20)

Thealogian Carol Christ identifies how the Western philosophical and theological focus on mortality/immortality ultimately rejects and ignores birth giving (2003, p. 207). Gestation and birth is the metaphorical ‘blind spot’ of textual inquiries that focus on a singular figure of a male/paternal God. Thealogian Naomi Goldenberg calls this the “patriarchal lie… the denial of the womb that gives birth” (in Christ, 1997, p. 67). This lie, denial or ignorance of birth within the Western historical trajectory is rooted, “replayed, reenacted… and taught” (Christ, 1997, p. 67) in complex historical, socio-cultural and spiritual terrains of the human dialectic of male/female embodiment. Birth-giving capacities of women have been regulated and simultaneously denigrated in patriarchal family systems and accompanying religious traditions. Asserting the necessary physical materiality of life as having sacred dimensions, eco-feminist writers recognize the denigration of female, birth-giving bodies by pointing towards a dualistic and hierarchical equation of women with body-nature-Earth, and men with mind-culture-Spirit (Diamond & Orenstein 1990; Mellor, 1997).

Women's Building, SF, Nursing Mama
Women’s Building, SF, Nursing Mama

Drawing from philosopher Luce Irigaray’s Elemental Passions to reclaim a fluid logic beyond such binaries, Hanneke Canters and Grace Jantzen (2005) call for a “feminist revival of birth for a life of flourishing” (Anderson, 2007, p. 2). Birth, as an activity and experience, is inseparable from human culture and consciousness (O’Brien, 1981). In the words of womanist midwife and scholar, Arisika Razak, “birth is the primary numinous event. It is our major metaphor for life and coming to being” (1990, p. 168).

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(Art) Crow Mother by Lydia Ruyle

LR Crow Mother

Crow Mother is the mother of all the katsinas who are spirits of the Hopi universe. The Hopi, which means peace, believe all beings in the universe carry energy. They are one of the oldest living pueblo cultures and reside on three mesas in northern Arizona. Crow Mother appears during the Powamu or Bean dance, which opens the ritual year. She offers corn to sustain life and switches for discipline and protection. She stands on a rock art labyrinth symbolizing the human journey of life. Black crows hang out around humans and love corn.

Source: Katsina. Painted Wood. N.d. Hopi. Museum of Northern Arizona. Flagstaff

Read Meet Mago Contributor Lydia Ruyle.

We, the co-editors, contributors, and advisers, have started the Mago Web (Cross-cultural Goddess Web) to rekindle old Gynocentric Unity in our time. Now YOU can help us raise this torch high to the Primordial Mountain Home (Our Mother Earth Herself) wherein everyone is embraced in WE. There are many ways to support Return to Mago. You may donate to us. No amount is too small for us. For your time and skill, please email Helen Hwang (magoism@gmail.com). Please take an action today and we need that! Thank YOU in Goddesshood of all beings!

(Click Donate button below. You can donate by credit card or bank account without registering PayPal. Find “Don’t have a PayPal account?” above the credit card icons.)

(Easter Essay 2) The Secret of the Sacred Garden: The Garden of Eden and the Orchard of the Virgin by Harita Meenee

Ishtar/Inanna, winged and wearing a horned cap or tiara of divinity. Detail of an ancient Mesopotamian vase from Larsa, early 2nd millennium BC. © Marie-Lan Nguyen / Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY 2.5
Ishtar/Inanna, winged and wearing a horned cap or tiara of divinity. Detail of an ancient Mesopotamian vase from Larsa, early 2nd millennium BC. © Marie-Lan Nguyen / Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY 2.5

To trace the connection between the gardens of Aphrodite and Adonis on the one hand and the garden of the Resurrection on the other, we have to examine if the cult of Adonis was ever prevalent in Palestine. Although he is known as a Hellenic deity, it seems that his worship was imported to Greece in the 7th c. BCE from the Middle East. His name is linked to the Semitic Adon, which means “Lord.” In some ways he is similar to Tammuz (or Dumuzi), honored by women from Mesopotamia to Syro-Palestine, across languages and cultures. As Reed points out, the Greek celebrants of the Adonia “had their counterparts in the women of Jerusalem weeping for Tammuz at the north gate of the temple, excoriated in Ezekiel, 8:14-15.”

Inanna and the Song of Songs

The Jewish prophet Ezekiel wrote during the early 6th c. BCE, but Tammuz/Dumuzi comes from a much older era. He was the consort of Ishtar/Inanna, an Eastern version of Aphrodite, who also happened to be associated with a “holy” and “luxuriant” garden, as reported in the epic of Gilgamesh. Furthermore, when she sings her song of love to Dumuzi, she calls him “my desirable apple garden,” “my fruitful garden of meš trees,” and “my shaded garden of the desert.”[1]

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