Happy Monday, today's Airy Monday News Beagle features archaelogical news of interest to Pagans & their allies: an Iron Age chariot; history of Aphrodite; South Indian mother goddess; more at Amphipolis; ancient Canaanite temple.
This "once in a lifetime" discovery unearthed of an Iron Age hoard that archaeologists believe was buried as part of an ancient (Pagan) religious ritual.
I first began to utilize 'Priestessing' as a verb during my second week postpartum.
During that time I texted my childhood friend, Melanie, from the couch that I was unable to leave. Being stuck on the couch was a surprising situation for me to be in, for while I had planned on doing a 40 day sit in with my newborn Maiden, I hadn't planned on my carefully planned for home water birth becoming a C-section, nor for the recovery time that it would entail. Least of all was I planning on getting an infected cyst inside of my inner thigh just as I began to get the strength to be up and about for extended periods of time on my own.
I had envisioned the sit in being peaceful (which for the most part it was) and myself floating around on a cloud, wearing my baby, breastfeeding and napping, and, while I did nap and breastfed with her consistently I was definitely not floating nor was I wearing her. My stomach incision was too painful and at the moment that I was texting Melanie I was sitting on gauze pads sans pants or underwear oozing pus and blood onto the pad as my baby slept nestled in my arm. I was in shock from an operation that I wasn't expecting, new Motherhood hormones and that darn infected cyst. To top it all off, I was only 8 days into my 40 day sit~in I was starting to feel stir crazy.
As a child I experienced everything around me with awe and wonder. Receiving magic was natural and seamless. The path of the Priestess helped me to keep this channel open, and as a Maiden Priestess I revelled in my role as Receiver of Magic. In ceremony and ritual I was taken away on the wings of the energy, the music, and the Spirit helpers that joined us. During retreats I was guided through meditations that opened my crown chakra, I would soak in sacred waters, and spend hours practicing yoga. I could walk the Earth, still and contemplative, or run wildly with the wind rushing through my hair. I was an adult, yet I was still a Maiden, my life was still my own. Just when, where and how I served the Divine and her children was still my prerogative.
Pregnancy was the beginning of my transition from Maiden to Mother. I knew that I was walking through the fires of my rite of passage when I was in it, but I could not have anticipated what it would mean for me as a Priestess. I was prepared to lose my freedom in exchange for devoted service to the nurturing of my daughter Gracious and her soul's descent into the flesh. It was the dimming of the magic and the loss of space and time to consciously receive it that I wasn't prepared for. The elation of new motherhood was tempered by surprising feelings of grief. In prayer I realized that the tension of transition had brought a feeling of loss for the former phase of my life. I was grieving because I was becoming ready to embrace a new phase.