Category Archives: women’s experience

(Poem) Fuerza Ancestral/Ancestral Strength by Xánath Caraza (in Spanish and English)

Fuerza ancestral

Fuerza de mujer
Delicada
Que fluye en aguas rojas
Pensamientos concéntricos
Fuerza que renace
Se enreda en las copas de los árboles
Cihuacóatl

Fuerza creadora que canta
Que despierta
Que guía entre el oscuro laberinto
Que susurra al oído el camino extraviado
Que invita a vivir
Tonantzin

Latidos de obsidiana
De fuerza incandescente
De humo azul
Corazón de piedra verde
Frente a ti están
Otras vibraciones femeninas
Yoloxóchitl

Fuerza de mujer que fluye
Entre las páginas
De poemas extraviados
De signos olvidados
Entre galerías
De imágenes grabadas
Poesía tatuada en la piel
Xochipilli

Corazón enardecido
Que explota
Respira
Siente
Vive
Tlazoteótl

Montañas de malaquita
Áureo torrente matutino
Que recorre los surcos
Del cuerpo
Coatlicue

Fuerza femenina ancestral
Sobre papel amate
Que se entrega
A los intrínsecos diseños
De las frases dibujadas
Coyolxauqui

Pensamiento de jade
Que se evapora con la luna
Que se integra a los caudalosos blancos ríos
Tonantzin

Fuerza de mujer
Del lejos y cerca
De arriba y abajo
Del dentro y de fuera
De ciclo eterno
Fuerza dual
De cielo de granate
Cihuacóatl, Tonantzin
Yoloxóchitl, Xochipilli
Tlazoteótl, Coatlicue
Coyolxauqui, Chicomecóatl
Guirnaldas de flores blancas las celebran
Plumas de quetzal adornan las cabelleras
Las abuelas creadoras cantan
Al unísono en esta tierra
Fuerza femenina, ancestral  

 

Ancestral Strength 

Women’s strength
Delicate
Flows in red waters
Concentric thoughts
Strength reborn
Tangles in the tree tops
Cihuacoatl

Creative force that sings
That awakens
That guides through the dark labyrinth
That whispers into the ear the lost road
That invites to live
Tonantzin

Heartbeats of obsidian
Of incandescent strength and
Of blue smoke
Heart of green stone
Before you are
Feminine vibrations
Yoloxochitl

Women’s strength flows
Among pages
Of lost poems
Of forgotten glyphs
Among galleries
Of engraved images
Poetry tattooed on the skin
Xochipilli

Heart inflamed with passion
Bursts
Breathes
Feels
Lives
Tlazoteotl

Mountains of malaquite
Golden morning torrent
Flows along the channels
Of the body
Coatlicue

Ancestral feminine strength
On amate paper
Surrenders itself
To the intricate designs
Of the drawn phrases
Coyolxauqui

Thought of jade
Evaporates with the Moon
Integrates into the white water rivers
Tonantzin

Women’s strength
From far away and near
From above and below
From inside and out
Of the eternal cycle
Dual strength
Sky of garnet
Cihuacoatl, Tonantzin
Yoloxochitl, Xochipilli
Tlazoteotl, Coatlicue
Coyolxauqui, Chicomecoatl
White flower garlands celebrate you
Feathers of Quetzal decorate your long tufts
Grandmothers sing
In unison on this land
Ancestral, feminine strength

photo for ancestral strength
Goddess Tlazoteótl
Sculpture in Museo de Antropologia de Xalapa
Photograph by Xánath Caraza

Read Meet Mago Contributor, Xanath Caraza and her other posts.

(Essay) Hildegard of Bingen by Angelika Heike Rüdiger

On 17 September the Catholic Church commemorates Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179) who was one of the outstanding women of the Middle Ages. She was a researcher in nature, healer, mystic, poet and composer. She was Jutta of Sponheim’s pupil and lived with the nun Jutta in closure next to the Benedictine abbey on the Disibodenberg. After Jutta’s death she became magistra, head of the enclosed women. In the years 1147-1150 Hildegard founded her own convent on the Rupertsberg near Bingen, later another one at Eibingen near Rüdesheim.

Hildegard had visions since her childhood which came to her when she was awake. In one of those visions she was told by God to write down what she saw. Although she was of weak health, she travelled far to Cologne, Trier and to southern Germany. There she preached mainly about the willingness to do penance and to lead an upright life following Christ. Many persons of different social rank asked for her advice in personal communication or via correspondence

A main theme in all her writings is certainly the importance of the wholeness and unity of all. All things are referring to each other and are related in God.

O virtus sapientie*
que circuiens circuisti,
comprehendendo omnia
in una via, que habet vitam
tres alas habens,
quarum una in altum volat
et altera de terra sudat
et tercia undique volat.
laus tibi sit,
sicut te decet,
o sapientia.

O power of Wisdom
Who has surrounded surrounding
All comprising
In one way, which has life
Having three wings,
Of which one flies to the high
And the other toils on earth
And the third flies everywhere.
Praise to you,
As it is becoming,
O wisdom.

(*sapientia is a female noun in Latin)

Her thoughts about the role of women were courageous and gave important impulses. Today her teachings about healing have become important again. Hildegard was already in her lifetime honoured like a saint.  She was added to the Roman marytrologium, the list of the saints, and thus de facto canonized without an officially closed canonization process. Most recently she was entered into the list of saints by Pope Benedict XVI, thus extending her veneration to the whole church. Benedict XVI also declared her a Doctor of the church in October 2012.

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(Art poem essay) In Praise of Her by Yvonne M. Lucia

In Praise of Her

IN PRAISE OF HER

I pledged my life to God

in the back seat

of our ’57 Rambler

when I was seven,

as my dad drove home

from the 6AM Latin Mass.

When Sister Renata

taught us the catechism

in first grade,

the Doctrine of Limbo

made me cry.

That same year

she chose me

to lead the May Procession -

the special girl

who got to wear

the special dress

reserved for the occasion.

I crowned the alabaster Mary

with a wreath of baby’s breath,

then joined the others

in the Living Rosary

encircling the altar.

Today I worship

the Feminine Divine -

the seeds of my rebellion

were sown, it seems,

around the age of reason,

with talk of “Pygmies”

who, unbaptized,

upon their death

might live happily ever-after

but could not meet God.

The pastel velvet dress

I wore for Mary’s coronation -

that domesticated Rite of Spring-

was the tiny spore

of my unfurling.

The child

is mother

of the woman.

Now,

I’m whirling

in the circle dance

in praise of Her.

The poem “In Praise of Her” is my attempt to crystalize the experience of my journey with the Divine Feminine, encountered in the figure of Mary, from childhood to the present.  I have been a lover of Mary for as long as I can remember.  As a young girl I used to recite the prayer “Lovely Lady Dressed in Blue” each night before falling asleep. I felt held and comforted by the words and the images I saw in my mind’s eye.

The series of paintings that I began in January 2012, Contemporary Images of the Feminine Divine, is a culmination of many threads of my life being woven together into a public offering of my personal theology.  The paintings explore images of the sacred feminine, primarily symbolized in the archetypal figure of Mary.  They are visual contemplative prayers offered as a healing balm for our broken selves and for our dying Mother earth.  The images are intended as reflections and mirrors of the sacred feminine that resides within each of us, male and female alike.

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(Book Review) Blood & Honey Icons: Biosemiotics & Bioculinary reviewed by Donna Snyder

A review of Blood & Honey Icons:  Biosemiotics & Bioculinary by Danica Anderson

Blood & Honey Icons by Danica Anderson Cover Art
Blood & Honey Icons by Danica Anderson
Cover Art

I bought this book to support work with survivors of the Balkan conflicts of the late 20th Century.  For my money I got a multifaceted lesson on healing practices useful for victims of violence anywhere, including the El Paso/Juárez region, where I live.  The horrors of femicide, narco wars, and military violence in Juárez are known throughout the world.

The author, Danica Anderson, is a forensic psychotherapist and a fellow with the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress.  Anderson has worked in Bosnia since March 1999, as well as in Africa for the International Criminal Court, India with tsunami survivors, Sri Lanka with civil war survivors, Haiti with victims of terror, and the U.S.A with members of the military.

Anderson’s experience as the child of immigrants mirrors the life of many here, with families still surrounded by the culture of the country left behind.  Her father, a rural man, and her mother, who had been interred in a World War II prison camp, immigrated to the United States as refugees.  Although born here, Anderson did not learn English until second grade, and was then called upon to interpret for her elders.  She thus shared in the traumas of refugees in the South Slavic community in Chicago.  Ethnic traditions were also inculcated into her heart, particularly kolo circle dances and the songs previously sung by women working the fields and at the hearth. Continue reading

(Special Post Mother Teresa 4) A Role Model for Women? by Mago Circle Members

Part IV: Illumination and Consensus Reached

[Editorial Note: The following is an edited version of the discussion that took place spontaneously on Mago Circle from March 1, 2013 for about two weeks. It was an extensive, heated, yet reflective discussion, now broken into four parts to fit the format of the blog. We thank each and all of the participants for your openness, generosity, and courage to stand up for what you believe and think! Some are marked as anonymous. As someone stated, something may have been “written in the heat of the moment” and some might like to change it at a later time. So we inform our readers that nothing is written in stone. As a matter of fact, the discussion is ongoing, now with Magoism Blog readers. Please comment and respond as you wish.]

Mother Teresa.doc 6
Pernicious for especially women and the suppressed

Diane Horton: [C], how is it that you do not see that MT had no right to sacrifice other people for any purpose whatsoever? None of us have the right or the place to “sacrifice those we care about” for anything. She was not “above them”. And she had abundant means to do far more for them, to cure and comfort them. If indeed she imagined she had some lofty motivation as you so fervently believe, to use the power she had to withhold medical care from the poverty stricken sick and dying in some misguided and ultimately cruel attempt to bring the world’s attention to their suffering and produce compassion within those who would not otherwise feel it is the most monstrous miscarriage of any expression of what you might refer to as “love” that I have heard of outside of Jim Jones killing all of his followers in Ghana. That’s not Love. That’s not Compassion. That is Manipulation, and manipulation is ego-based.

Anne Wilkerson Allen: Yes. It is an indoctrination so deep and so prolonged that it takes a lifetime to overcome…and we rely on the love and compassion of others to help bring us to this understanding….thanks, Diane.

Diane Horton: Love you, Anne.

[C]: Is thinking that any human being sacrificing inside their very soul, their morals, & all that entails, is actually of lesser value than outside human pain, suffering, even death itself, right?

Diane Horton: I’m not sure I understand the question really, but I’ll try a response: one’s inner and outer life are of equal importance because they are all the whole person.

mother teresa 8
Who benefits from such ideology?

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