Tuesday, September 1, 2015


So, er, yes. What you see below is a collection of quotes that represents my journey of discovery through the sacred feminine.

What you also see is a series of thoughts left a little half-baked through neglect.

If I could fill in the gaps with the detritus from everyday life over here, you would see: the usual round of Melbourne colds; disproportionate anxiety about my children's illnesses; one tired and bloated body hunched over a laptop at every spare moment, racing against time to finish a novel.

It hasn't all been bad. There have been some beautiful email exchanges. Offers of help. Home baked Nutella and choc chip cookies (my sister is the best). Roses returning to cheeks. One phenomenal full moon. Experimenting with delicious smoothies. Handwritten cards in the mail. Tiny pink blossoms on the nectarine tree in our front garden. The most incredible night of escape and awe (if you live in Melbourne then you need to see this!). Exciting meetings with our architects. The promise of Spring.

And, the family holiday that starts on Thursday of next week. Of course, this is the deadline that is bringing everything else into sharp focus. And pumping adrenaline into my To Do lists. And sending my anxious perfectionist into overdrive. It doesn't help that there's a longhaul flight involved.

I've decided that, for the first time ever, I am not lugging my SLR around with me. It's a small detail but one that signifies that I am packing light. I even haven't announced to friends that I am arriving.

This is not easy to say when travelling with small kids but I really want some of this trip to just be for me.

You never know, I may even get some rest.

And I might even write more soon.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The chalice

A woman who is maternal, nurturing, or creative in these ways does not live in her head. There is an innate feminine quality to what she does and how she does what she does, or knows what she knows.

Just as a woman may surrender her body to be a vessel in pregnancy, in some similar invisible way mediumistic women can become the chalice through which consciousness may emerge. The sibyls, Delphic Oracles, and Native American women who had dreams of the tribe functioned in this way. These psychic women commonly had to lose consciousness for the dream of information to come through them […]. 

Both experiences change when consciousness is not surrendered, and a woman is aware of the awesomeness and privilege of what she does. 

She is now a chosen vessel and she herself has made the choice of what she is doing with her body or psyche. She taps into archetypal depths or biological depths that mysteriously come together in soul experiences and is conscious of being this chalice through which life or vision emerges. 

At this particular time, many women are birthing Goddess consciousness.

Jean Shinoda Bolen
Crossing to Avalon: A Woman’s Midlife Quest for the Sacred Feminine

What this is all about.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The ecstacy

Two important doctrines of the alternative church were the promise of the restoration of the Davidic monarchy and the millennial promise of a world in harmony with God. 

The alternative church also taught enlightenment and personal transformation through the action of the Holy Spirit. The heretics did not believe in a creed; they lived a life of personal encounter with God. 

Many artists and esoterics were allied with the heretics in opposition to church hegemony over European thought. And in their alliance, they were privy to the same secrets. They understood that the denial and repression of the feminine had warped and distorted their society, robbing it of ecstasy and freedom. 

The work of these intellectuals, most of them tied to one another in a network that transcended national boundaries, coalesced in its attempt to restore the Woman, the forgotten feminine, to consciousness.

Margaret Starbird
The Woman with the Alabaster Jar: Mary Magdalen and the Holy Grail

What this is all about.

Monday, August 17, 2015

The reality

At last she said, “If he lives, he will be a good king, but I think he will be a Christian king.” It seemed that for a moment all the sounds of Avalon were hushed around her, as if the very waves of the Lake and the whispering sound of the reeds on the border were silent to hear her say it. “If he survives the quest of the Grail — or if he should abandon it — still his rule will be circled about by the priests, and through all the land there will only be one God and only one religion.”

“Would that be such a tragedy, Morgaine?” Lancelet asked quietly, “All through this land, the Christian God is bringing a spiritual rebirth here — is that an evil thing, when mankind has forgotten the Mysteries?”

“They have not forgotten the Mysteries,” she said, “they have found them too difficult. They want a God who will care for them, who will not demand that they struggle for enlightenment, but who will accept them just as they are, with all their sins, and take away their sins with repentance. It is not so, it will never be so, but perhaps it is the only way the unenlightened can bear to think of their Gods.”

Lancelet smiled bitterly. “Perhaps a religion which demands that every man must work through lifetime after lifetime for his own salvation is too much for mankind. They want not to wait for God’s justice, but to see it now. And that is the lure which this new bred of priests has promised them.”

Morgaine knew that he spoke the truth, and bowed her head in anguish.

“And since their view of a God is what shapes their reality, so it shall be — the Goddess was real while mankind still paid homage to her, and created her form for themselves. Now they will make for themselves the kind of God they think they want — the kind of God they deserve, perhaps.”

Well, so it must be, for as man saw reality, so it became. While the ancient Gods, the Goddess, were seen as benevolent poor live-giving, so indeed had nature been to them; and when the priests had taught men to think of all nature as evil, alien, hostile, and the old Gods as demons, even so they would become, surging up from within that part of man which he now wished to sacrifice or control, instead of letting it lead him.

Marion Zimmer Bradley
The Mists of Avalon

What this is all about.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

The pendulum

The Catholic Inquisition published the book that arguably could be called the most blood-soaked publication in human history. Malleus Maleficarum — or The Witches' Hammer — indoctrinated the world to “the dangers of freethinking women” and instructed the clergy how to locate, torture and destroy them. 

Those deemed “witches” by the Church included all female scholars, priestesses, gypsies, mystics, nature lovers, herb gatherers and any woman “suspiciously attuned to the natural world.” Midwives were killed for their heretical practice of using medical knowledge to ease the pain of childbirth — a suffering, the Church claimed, that was God’s rightful punishment for Eve’s partaking of the Apple of Knowledge, this giving birth to the idea of Original Sin. 

During three hundred years of witch hunts, the Church burned at the stake an astounding five million women.

The propaganda and bloodshed had worked. Today's world was living proof.

Women, once celebrated as the essential half of spiritual enlightenment, had been banned from the temples of the world. There were no female Orthodox rabbis, Catholic priests, nor Islamic clerics.  The once hallowed act of Hieros Gamos — the natural sexual union between man and woman through which each became spiritually whole — had been recast as a shameful act. [...]

The days of the goddess were over. The pendulum had swung. 

Mother Earth had become a man's world, and the gods of destruction and war were taking their toll. The male ego had spent two millennia running unchecked by its female counterpart.

The Priory of Sion believed that it was this obliteration of the sacred feminine in modern life that had caused what the Hopi Native Americans called koyanisquatsi — "life out of balance" — an unstable situation marked by testosterone-fuelled wars, a plethora of misogynistic societies and a growing disrespect for Mother Earth.

Dan Brown
The Da Vinci Code

What this is all about.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

What we know

To speak our own truth the first time feels fraught with danger. It becomes easier each time. In the bones of our collective experience as women we know there are risks.

Somewhere in our souls, we remember the burning time, when women were persecuted and burned alive as witches. This went on for three hundred years of the Inquisition. In what has been referred to in contemporary times as “the women’s holocaust,” more women were burned at the stake than were killed in the Nazi gas ovens during the Holocaust in World War II. 

First the midwives were burned for easing the pains of childbirth (which went against the biblical injunction that women were supposed to suffer), then the healers who knew the medicinal uses of herbs, women who celebrated the seasons, eccentric women, women with possessions someone coveted, outspoken women, bright women, women without protection.

This collective memory has an effect much as any personal repressed trauma does; it makes women anxious when we discover our own sacred experiences and find words for them. We need courage to bring forth what we know.

Jean Shinoda Bolen
Crossing to Avalon: A Woman’s Midlife Quest for the Sacred Feminine

What this is all about.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Words for the mysteries


We must remember how and when each of us has had an experience of the Goddess, and felt healed and made whole by her. These are holy, sacred, timeless moments, and as numinous as they may have been, without words they are difficult to retrieve. 

But when someone else speaks of a similar experience, it can evoke the memory and bring back the feelings, which restores the experience. Only if we speak from personal experience does this happen. 

This is why we need words for women’s mysteries, which, like everything else that is of women, seems to require that one woman at a time birth what she knows. We serve as midwives to each other’s consciousness.

Jean Shinoda Bolen
Crossing to Avalon: A Woman’s Midlife Quest for the Sacred Feminine

What this is all about.

P.S. If any of this resonates and you feel called to make space for your sacred consciousness, then I can think of no greater space than the August Moon reflective writing challenge, which starts tomorrow!