EPIONE – Goddess of Pain Relief

EPIONE was a healing Goddess, and the wife of Asclepius the God of Healing. She was the mother to 5 daughters who all played some part in the healing process. Epione herself presided over the soothing of Pain. Asclepius, Epione and their family were the first recorded therapeutic healing group.

Pain accompanies  life on Earth, and humans have, it seems, always been finding and practicing various forms of pain management.The cultivation of the opium poppy plant dates back to the earliest years of human civilization, and opium use was well known in Ancient Mesopotamia. Pain arises in our physical bodies to alert us to possible malfunctions or problems within our human form. The ancient Greeks used several words to describe pain such as algos, pathos and odyni. They developed a belief that pain had the same value as treatment; a stance that occupied the thoughts of many historians, tragedians and philosophers. Pain at this time was treated in sanctuaries using a combination of religious rituals, incantations, tinctures and herbs.       I AM PAIN 

‘Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.’.. Khalil Gibran

EPIONE
Goddess of the soothing of PAIN
I AM PAIN

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ALEMONA- Nourisher of the Unborn

ALEMONA is the Roman Goddess who protects and helps nurture the unborn child in its mother’s womb, a warm place of containment and nourishment. Alemona’s task was to maintain  the development of the child. From Her name came the words aliment, meaning “food”; alimental, “nourishing”, and alimony, which is  money paid to a wife by her estranged husband to provide for the nourishment for their children.

The act of being nurtured and fed is imperative to our existence. Feeding ourselves takes place on many levels.What feeds our bodies? What  feeds our psyches ? What feeds our souls?  We make choices of what we feed ourselves which in turn make us who we are. Taking time to pause, to consider, to pay attention and to reflect on how we can provide deep nurturance for ourselves  is a transformative . These kind acts to Self can hold the key as to how we may support and nourish our mind, body and soul by allowing those parts of our unborn selves to be allowed to grow, develop and  become conscious .

‘To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.’.. Mary Oliver

ALEMONA – Feeding the Unborn
I AM FED

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The Black Madonna

There are  400–500 Black Madonnas in Europe. Sometimes they are carefully cloaked or hidden from view. The Black Madonna holds within Her the vast archetype of the ancient lineage of the sacred feminine….Isis, Cybele, Inanna to name a few. She is the divine mystery who is keeper of the dazzling light within the darkness. Jung described her mystery as that of Crow- a symbol for the Black Nigredo state in alchemy in which the dark experiences of ones psyche are nourished and made healthy leading to authentic transcendent change.

Marion Woodman in the book ‘Coming Home to Oneself ‘ talks of Her……

‘The Black Madonna is larger than life itself.
Nature impregnated by spirit,
She presides over fertility, sexuality, childbirth.
She accepts her body as chalice for spirit,
Presides over the sacredness of matter,
The meeting of sex and spirit.
Rejected by the patriarchy,
Her energy has smoldered for generations.
Now she erupts in us and in the world,
Demands conscious recognition,
Demands redemption of matter. ‘

THE BLACK MADONNA
I AM THE SACRED FEMININE

The Black Madonna is usually shown holding a child but here I decided to picture her pregnant with the possibility of  global feminine equality  and empowerment.  The red anklet is a symbol of  her resonance with the openness of feminine sexuality .

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The Goddess STYX – Passage to the Underworld

The Goddess Styx in Greek mythology is both a deity and a river.  Her river is the threshold between the earth and the underworld.  Charon the ferryman carries the deceased across the river Styx threshold so they could enter the underworld. All oaths were taken by the deities in the presence of Styx.

The river Styx is just one of 5 rivers in the Stygian landscape of the Greek underworld. Their names were meant to reflect the emotions associated with death.

  • The LETHE is the river of  oblivion, time, memory and forgiveness
  • The PHLEGETHON was the turbulent river of  fire, change, truth,and light
  • The COCYTUS is the river of wailing , heartbreak, distress and lamentation.
  • The ACHERON is the river of pain, woe and sorrow.
  • The STYX is the most prominent river of the underworld  It’s known as the river of hatred, immortality and  unbreakable promises .

“When death comes like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,
I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?”...Mary Oliver ( continued below)

STX – PASSAGE TO THE UNDERWORLD
I AM THRESHOLD

When Death Comes By Mary Oliver

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox;

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,
I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up having simply visited this world.

 

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GAIA and our beautiful Earth…….

In Greek mythology GAIA  is the primordial Goddess of the EARTH, the personification of our planet. She was borne from Chaos. Gaia and Uranus (the sky) bore the Titans, the giants and the sea. Gaia was the original deity at the Delphi Oracle and mother of Python, the serpent at the center  of the earth. The ancient Greeks represented the center of the earth with a large stone, the omphalos which was situated at the centre of the Delphi temple guarded by Python. In later years Apollo murdered Python and took the power for himself.

In 1970 James Lovelock proposed that the earth is a living being, self-regulating the elements to sustain life on it….and called it the GAIA THEORY explaining an aware universe protecting and sustaining life on our planet.

“The divine oneness of life is within and all around us. Sometimes walking alone in nature we can feel its heartbeat and its wonder, and our steps become steps of remembrance. The simple practice of “walking in a sacred manner”—in which with every step we take we feel the connection with the sacred Earth—is one way to reconnect with the living spirit of the Earth. There are so many ways to reconnect with the sacred within creation, to listen within and include the Earth in our spiritual practice and daily life. When we hear the morning chorus of birds, we may sense that deeper joy of life and awake to its divine nature; at night the stars can remind us of what is infinite and eternal within us and within the world. Watching the simple wonder of a dawn or a sunset can be an offering in itself. Whatever way we are drawn to wonder, to recognize the sacred, what matters is always the attitude we bring to this intimate exchange. It is through the heart that a real connection is made, even if we first make it in our feet or hands. Do we really feel our self as a part of this beautiful and suffering planet, do we sense its need? Then this connection comes alive, a living stream that flows from our heart as it embraces all of life. Then every step, every touch, will be a prayer for the Earth, a remembrance of what is sacred.”….Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

            GAIA  is the personification of the consciousness  of our planet.  

              She is a living being. She is the SOUL of the Earth.

I AM EARTH #theredseedsoracle

GAIA – The Beautiful PLANET
I AM EARTH

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The Contemplation of Baba Yaga

BABA YAGA – The Great Mother in Russian folklore is a  large supernatural crone. She is wilder and older and odder than we can imagine. Like Sheela-na-gig or Kali she is a dark Goddess expressing life and death, birth and destruction. Baba Yaga draws our attention to the fact that she can be the very good mother or the very terrible mother. Her tale tells of her living far away from civilization in a hut in the woods full of birch trees. If people approached she would either joyfully eat them up and  grind their bones or she might offer aid and compassion to those who have found themselves lost in their darkness.

Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés, a Jungian psychoanalyst says in her book Women Who Run With the Wolves, that Baba Yaga is a kind of prototype of primal womanhood, a being of enormous wild power. “Baba Yaga,” she writes, “is the very essence of an instinctive and complete soul. She knows everything that was before. She is a keeper of heavenly and earthly secrets. She inspires fear because she simultaneously personifies a destructive power and the power of creation and life.” Clarissa Pinola Estes describes Baba Yaga as, “…a representation of a great woman who sees clearly, is decisive and knows the patterns of the universe.” 

The Contemplation of BABA YAGA

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THEIA under the GASLIGHT


THEIA is the Greek Goddess of Light . Here she stands under a gaslight which is a metaphor for Gaslighting , a form of insidious emotional abuse where the perpetrator ‘shuts someone down’ by causing them to doubt their truth. The term gaslighting was taken from the play ‘Gas light’ by Patrick Hamilton which was also turned into a film. The story is centered around a husband who manipulates his wife by questioning her sanity and her perception of reality. The husband distorts their home, mainly by dimming the gas light, and then denies any change in their environment has occurred at all. The wife is left disoriented and confused, as she questions her mental health as she now  believes that she can no longer trust what she believes to be true.

Gaslighting is a form of control and manipulation … if affected we can become blinded and confused and lose confidence in our sense of self and sanity. Women through the centuries have often been open to such abuse by being called hysterical and over emotional thereby reducing their worth. Gaslighting is a matrix of denial, contradictions and lies…..all conscious attempts to disempower the other person/s. Being in a relationship with someone who gaslights will leave us feeling worthless and  crazy  for the suggested problems in the relationship. It is a trap to ensure a persons reality and identity is broken and tested. Self-loathing and self-distrust soon follows. It is easy to fall blind to such behaviour. We are all susceptible to gaslighters as their behaviour tends to be an insidous and  gradual technique of manipulation……………..I AM BLINDED

THEIA under the GASLIGHT
I am BLINDED

 

 

 

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