While partaking on the journey into the underworld at the time of Crone, times are confusing and painfully depressing. Ya think? Today I found a friend that shows me some simple techniques of strength. It lives in the ocean. Deeply it wonders and lives there in the dark oceans. symbolically linked to the Underworld and Cretan symbolism.
“Because it lives in the depths and because of its sea-monster appearance, it is linked with the spirits of the underworld. However, where it is used as a motif in Cretan art, it carries a similar symbolism to that of the spiral and the spider’s web, themselves both emblematic of creation of the universe. ” pg 286, The Element Encyclopedia of Secret Signs and Symbols Fauna Adela Nozedar.
Early meditation outside led me to this image as a way to get rid of my busy thinking mind. I was aligning my chakras straight from above down and then pulling the earth from below up. I then focued on my pelvis area on my body. She came forth and I used her legs to whack busy thoughts that came forth like a paddle against ping-pong balls. I looked at thoughts and wacked them away. It was kinda fun. Then the synchronicities started to happen; I knew it was time to investigate. I went looking through my books and found another interesting perspective. Maybe along with being associated with the underworld and the spiraling creative living universe she also is associated with the serpent known as the Kundalini?
“She was also Kundalini, the inner female soul of man in serpent shape, coiled in the pelvis, induced through proper practice of yoga to uncoil and mount through the spinal chakra toward the head, bringing infinite wisdom.” Serpent: page 903, The Women’s encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets: Barbara G. Walker
If whacking images and thoughts away from my mind is part of this so-called infinite wisdom… than I am happier then usual. I will continue to study the octopi!!
If you are an older women like me looking for some profound reading material; go find a place to kick off your shoes and sit by the fire or stream to read. This is the magazine for you. It is published twice a year. I find it walking the line of paradoxical living. Liberally looking at what it is to be a mature woman: fun, fantastic and homey with a witchy bend. I love it. So check it out.
The menopause is probably the least glamorous topic imaginable; and this is interesting, because it is one of the very few topics …to which cling some shreds and remnants of taboo. A serious mention of menopause is usually met with uneasy silence; a sneering reference to it is usually met with relieved sniggers. Both the silence and the sniggering are pretty sure indications of taboo. ~Ursula K. Guin
Halloween and Day of the Dead, the next six months are all about autumn and winter, which is the dying and the silence of nature. This is symbolic in some places of the world more than others. I know that while living on the east coast in Rochester New York I distinctly experienced this pulling in and introspection of the seasons, this brings me to Persephone. In Greek mythology she is the daughter of Demeter who is raped by Hades king of the dead. A godly deal is made between Demeter and Hades. For 6 months of the year Persephone lives with her mother above the earth during spring and summer, and for 6 months during autumn and winter she lives with Hades. Even though she was raped this is what the Gods agreed too.
Before Persephone was raped by a patriarchal culture that created this Greek story, she was queen of the underworld, destroyer and a great crone. My favorite image is of her wearing a black robe while stirring a cauldron. She has many names and Hecate is one of them.
“She held the keys to heaven and hell (Elysium, Tartarus…)”
Persephone is part of the turning triangle also known as the triple goddess Demeter: virgin, mother, and crone. If we break down the meaning of the word Demeter, we have meter “mother” and de “delta” also known as “the letter of the vulva.”
“The Doorway of the Mysterious Feminine… the root from which heaven and earth sprang.”
Orphic mystics worshiped Persephone as Goddess of the blessed Dead.
“And now I come a suppliant to the Holy Persephone, that of her grace she received me to the seats of the Hallowed” Persephone answered” Happy and blessed one, thou shalt be god instead of mortal.”
Much of this information is passed on historically through the study of the Eleusinian mysteries. They are focused on the Homeric hymn to Demeter where Persephone plays her part especially at this time of the year. She is the older woman or crone.
This above introduction to Persephone is a way into my personal relationship with her. I am now walking towards the way of the crone. This particular autumn and winter are special to me because I am starting the walk of “Eleusis” or the advent towards the mysterious feminine where a doorway is opened to me. This winter is a full year since my womb became silent. Symbolically I see myself as a multi-colored-darkened flower that once bloomed, but now faces downward ready to fall towards the earth. It is a sad time but also a time of great change and power. I can feel it.
What I am experiencing parallels, as a synchronicity, with the current autumn and winter of 2012. I am sure that there are many other women walking this path now as well. I do not find many stories about what I am experiencing which is why I am sharing my story. To find and nurture another or inspire and affirm with another… is my hope. I am not ashamed of the subtle calling that pulls me on; it is an ancient one that I share closely with other women and my dear Persephone.
On my blog I have put up an image of an Owl. The image is taken from an ancient Greek coin used in the Eleusinian mysteries. Women involved in this ritualistic mystery wore these large coins on their heads. I am using my rendering of the image in a different way. I am creating my own personal ritual by having the image tattooed on the top of both of my wrists. I will do this in the next two weeks as an action that symbolizes my personal journey in becoming a crone. Since our culture ignores this part of a woman’s life, I found I needed to create this ritual and to bring forth my knowledge of Persephone and the owl as a cumulative experience.
Five years have passed. Life is feeling normal again. I lost both parents and went through the worst of the worst. I visited the underworld and received help from a Jungian therapist to walk with me on my dark journey. ‘Art, writing and poetry’ is the healing force that pulled me into a new world. I embrace the triple Goddess within myself. My libido is different. I see the world with new eyes. Life, pain, fear, love, desire all are different as new friends. I need less. I am close to nature and the elements. It is beyond words. Life is still challenging at times especially growing older. I do not feel alone and continue to work with such mysteries.
I am another woman who is initiated
bless all the women as well
before me and after me.
For this is the advent of the Eleusinian mysteries!!
Sources: *The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets by Barbara G. Walker: *The Element Encyclopedia of Secret Signs and Symbols by Adele Nozedar: *Eleusis, Archetypal Image of Mother and Daughter by Carl Kerenyl
“Blue, green, grey, white, or black; smooth, ruffled, or mountainous; that ocean is not silent.”
― H.P. Lovecraft
The blue moon passed and I mean it is over. I am so glad. What a bitch of an experience. I felt in prison as if trapped in the iron maiden. Feelings of hate grew from me like branches on an old oak tree ready to escape this body dungeon of despair. I was right in the middle of this hell not knowing if it would pass. My lungs ached and my breathing stopped only reanimated by the puff of an Albuterol. Cold then hot. Sweat melted me. I took a hot shower breathing deep and counting to ten. My mind was a little voodoo doll where little pins of painful thoughts pierced through my mind. Hate, lies and men enraged my body. The past, the now, how or could I go on. It felt like birthing. I did simple things . I did simple routines to keep me on track. The dishes, the laundry or making a sandwich for his lunch tomorrow. I walked outside and sat on the plastic white chair. I felt a thin breeze touch my face as if a kiss to ease my hopelessness as I cried. I didn’t brush my teeth or read a weird ass Grimm’s Fairy Tale to my son, just the usual prayer as the white cat jumped up to the top bunk-bed with him. I took my pain pills and drank my chamomile tea and turned on the biography channel called the Unexplained. This slowly pulled me out of my suffering into the suffering and mystery of others. I very slowly fell into a slumber. I awoke with easy breathing. A little coughing but healthy breathing. The almost hysterical dense feelings from the day before passed and so too summer was moving into autumn. What a fight it was and now today life is normal again. My coffee is delightful. My music is good. I made it through this hell and I am happy and content now. This blue moon was a dark blue moon her lessons did not break me. My growing pains as a baby crone.
They take place at the same time with neither one having an effect on the other, and yet they are related to one another in a meaningful way.
~Jung, Synchronicity And Human Destiny , By IRA Progoff
Late last night I could not fall asleep. So I turned on the TV to watch Turner Classic Movies to see if there was a good film on. I found a screwball comedy that I never viewed before entitled Come Live With Me with James Steward and Hedy Lamarr. It was offbeat, funny and a very sweet film. I think Hedy Lamarr is one of the most beautiful starlets to hit the big screen. As the film progressed I was introduced also for the first time to the character Grandma, played by actress Adeline De Walt Reynolds.
Grandma is a crone. She is a woman in her eighties. She is wise, honest and says what is on her mind. The main characters Bill Smith and Johnny Jones are in love. They will not admit it to each other, but Grandma already knows this. She is a bit of a jester too!
Grandma hand embroiders quotes and frames them and hangs them throughout the farmhouse. She is first introduced to us in the film while she is focused embroidering. She holds what she is working on up to show the couple what she is embroidering and says this quote freely, “What fools Mortals be.” She continues to talk directly and sweetly to the couple. She brings them closer together by cooking them a dinner and then sitting out on the porch where they talk.
In a endearing scene Johnny looks around the farm telling Grandma how beautiful the farm is and says,
“I bet you never had a hard time in your life”
Grandma tells her this is not the case because she lost her husband, and has been through floods, and one year there was no food to eat because the farm land did not produce a crop. She told Johnny that in times like these you just got to rise above, rise above the hard times.
This film is important because it held personal synchronicities for me. This is the type of Crone I want to be as I grow older. What a delightful woman.
Oracles can be found anywhere for the process of synchronicity to happen. I found my moments held within this film when I met the character Grandma. She spoke to my heart as though she knew me.