"The essential qualities of the dark moon are change and transformation. Today
we are afraid of many of the dark moon [and Dark Goddess] teachings, such as
alchemy, astrology, and other spiritual or psychological disciplines, which
reveal information about the unconscious or subtle dimensions of being. The
Bible has told us that they are evil and contrary to the will of God. Educators
tell us they cannot be validated by scientific inquiry and its practitioners are
labeled quacks. Yet it is these teachings, based on the timing of cyclical
patterns that give us the guidance that enables us to pass thru the dark
nonphysical dimensions of being - of death and rebirth, endings and new
beginnings, or spontaneous healings - with clarity and confidence instead of
panic and terror. Philosophical traditions have repeatedly told us that the
answers tot he ultimate questions of life and death are found, not in the
external world, but deep within the dark recesses of our own minds." (Demetra
George, "Mysteries of the Dark Moon," page 51-52.)
In the psychology of humanity there occurred a polarization between the male
gods who came from above, bearers of the light, [the lightning and solar Gods of
the nomadic invader- Aryans, Kurgans, Semites and Dorians, who came from the
steppes of northern Europe, where "big sky" rules over the cold, forbidding
earth] and the female divinities, who dwelt in the [fertile] darkness of Earth
and caves. Light was equated with good and dark with evil....
As the Goddess became distorted from an image of the compassionate mother, the
source and sustainer of all life, into a symbol associated with the forces of
darkness and evil, women, her earthly manifestations, were likewise considered
impure, evil, and guilty of original sin - people who must be punished. Women
who had sexual relations outside of the patriarchal monogamous marriage contract
threatened the certainty of patriarchal bloodline transmission, and were
ostracized and killed; their illegitimate children deprived of all legal rights
and social acceptance." (George, 38)
The demise of the goddess and the rise of the gods can also be understood in
terms of the changes that were occurring in the human brain during the period of
transition. Princeton University professor Julian Jaynes, in his controversial
study of human consciousness, suggests that ancient people did not "think" as we
People were 'bicameral,' directed by voices emanating from the right side of the
brain and apprehended by the left side - voices that they treated as divine and
obeyed unquestioningly until a series of natural disasters and the growing
complexity of their society forced them to become [what we might call] conscious
(around 1500 BCE).
The cosmology that developed during the reign of the Goddess arose from the
kinds of thought processes that originate primarily out of the right brain. The
right brain is feminine in polarity, circular in motion, intuitive in nature,
and audial in emphasis. The right brain is relational and unifying; it focuses
on a holistic view of how things are similar and interconnected....It sees time
as cyclical. Humanity then worshipped a feminine lunar deity who circled and
ever-renewed Herself. She illumined the mystery where the end and beginning are
the same point, touching back-to-back. Peoples thus understood death and sex as
precursors to rebirth. And they did not fear the darkness of death, the ecstasy
of sexuality, or the Goddesses and Her priestesses, who facilitated their
transition between lifetimes.
While Jaynes does not discuss the changeover from the Goddesses to the Gods, he
does document the catastrophes and cataclysms that started to occur in the
middle of the second millennium BCE. In Addition to the volcanic eruptions,
tidal waves, and massive flooding, he sees widespread warfare and dislocation
that [has been previously identified as] the patriarchal invasions. Jaynes
suggests that the rational, logical, analytical mind, all functions of the left
brain, was developed in order to assist humanity thru the increasing complexity
of their changing world. He presents evidence that the left-brain functions
became more active at this time and grew to influence the ways in which
individuals perceived reality.
The left brain is masculine in polarity, linear in movement, logical in nature,
and visual in perception. It has been most prevalent in the analytical,
technological and scientific intellectualism of modern times. While the right
brain focuses on how things are alike, THE LEFT BRAIN EMPHASIZES HOW THEY ARE
DIFFERENT[!]. It develops our capacity for analysis and discrimination, and in
the process it perceives a distinction between subject and object. This kind of
dualistic view sees a separation between self and others, between us and them,
and this perception inevitably leads to a war of opposites that yields an
oppressor and victim...After 1500 BCE, when human beings began to operate
primarily from the left brain, associated with the masculine principle, they
began to see a distinction between themselves and the rest of creation. Because
they now feared the threat of being overwhelmed by external forces as something
separate from themselves, there arose a desire to conquer the feminine
principle, embodied in the Goddess, women, and nature, rather than to live in
harmony with it. (George, pp 40-44)
"While the religion of the Goddess always included a concept of the Underworld,
it was not a place of punishment. It was simply the gap between lifetimes, the
dark womb of the Goddess, where one went to be purified, healed, and prepared
for rebirth. It is the patriarchal monotheistic religions, operating out of
left-brain mentality, that conceived of a heaven and hell, with the he
corresponding associations of good and evil, reward and punishment. And the
hell of this wrathful Father God was filled with unending sadistic torture and
pervasive suffering. Humanity then began to fear the darkness of death. Those
who, during their lives, were not saved by a religious conversion to the Father
faced a death of eternal torture and absolute finality. Their terror extended
to the Dark Goddess of the Dark Moon, who was now only the death-bringer and no
longer the renewer. When the Goddess became separated from her role in cyclical
renewal, her third dark aspect became the horrifying image of feminine evil who
seduced, devoured, and brought finality to the lives of human beings. The dark
aspect of the goddess was then hated, persecuted, suppressed, and cast out into
the predawn of history and into the depths of the unconscious....
Today the Dark Goddess, as the third aspect of the ancient Triple Goddess,
represents many of the rejected aspects of the trinity of feminine wholeness.
the teachings of the Dark Goddess of the Dark Moon are concerned with
divination, magic, healing, sacred sexuality, the nonphysical dimensions of
being, and the mysteries of birth, death, and regeneration. These dark moon
teachings, now called pseudo-sciences, have been rejected as legitimate areas of
inquiry by modern religious and educational institutions....
The shadow, according to Junian psychology, is the dark, rejected part of the
psyche. It consists of all those qualities that we, as influenced by the values
of our culture, do not feel are desirable or acceptable to express as part of
our personalities. The shadow contains what we do not like about ourselves,
what we find threatening, shameful, and inadequate, as well as certain valued
and positive qualities that we are pressured to repress and disown...
The inherent nature of the original Dark Goddess, who brought both death and
rebirth, has been repressed and denied for thousands of years. Her toxic
releases, festering in exile, have distorted and poisoned our perceptions of an
intrinsic aspect of the feminine nature. the Dark Goddess was then
conceptualized as malefic, and her teachings concerning the dark, sex, and death
were distorted. Our mythical literature abounds with images of the Dark Goddess
as feminine evil. She was feared as the Fates who, at the moment of our birth,
determine the time of our death...as Nemesis, the Goddess of Judgment and swift
retribution; as the Furies, who will hound a man to madness and death..medea,
who killed her children; Circe, who transformed men into pigs; Medusa, who
turned them to stone; the Lamia, who sucked their blood; Lilith, who seduced
them in order to breed demons; and Hekate, Queen of the Witches, who snatched
them into the Underworld." (Ibid, 43-44). In popular culture, there is no
better representation of the Dark Goddess than the Alien mother who fought
Sigourney Weaver. Our fear, rage and disgust over the Dark Goddess can be seen
in our severe reactions to women who do NOT behave as the loving, nurturing
mothers we expect/ want them to be.
Ask someone to give a description of the personality type s/he finds most
offensive, irritating, and impossible to get along with, and s/he will produce a
description of his/her own repressed shadow!
"Jungian psychology tells us that in order to heal the wounds and suffering
caused by denying and rejecting specs of our wholeness, we must first enter into
our unconscious and develop a relationship with our shadow. It is necessary to
recognize that all of these hated and ostracized parts of ourselves have a
legitimate need to exist and be expressed. If we can affirm the full range of
our essential human nature, acknowledging both the desirable and undesirable
qualities, then we have the option to transform the more problematical energies
that cause our pain and suffering into constructive activity that will benefit
our lives and relationships....
We need to go into our darkness and make our peace with all the lost parts of
ourselves in order to redeem the healing and renewal that reside in the dark...
The hero or heroine's journey into the underworld to reclaim the stolen treasure
from the monster is not an easy quest, and is fraught with many dangers....As we
move toward accepting the wholeness of our beings, we will inevitably have to
revise our fears of the dark....
And so we must invoke and praise the Dark Goddess, who has been banished to the
neglected corners of our psyches. Her ultimate function is to facilitate the
transformation that occurs in t he dark. She provokes the death of our ego
selves, of our old forms, and of our false assumptions, so that we can give
birth to the new....Our personal healing experiences then become the training
ground for the compassion that permeates our potentialities as a wounded healer.
The mystery of the Dark Moon Goddess is that death and birth are the twin faces
of her cosmic orgasm with the Sun God each month at the new moon conjunction.
Fulfilled in love, she then circles, ever turning around the earth, and sends
forth a shower of blessings with the knowledge that there is no annihilation."
The Dark GoddessSHE'S BACK!!
(with a vengeance)
She has been known in ancient times and continuously throughout history even up to the moment by names too numerous to mention. She predates Christianity (who adopted her names, her liturgy, her holidays, her rites and her places of worship) by thousands of years. Remains of her temples and her images have been found on every continent and in every country the world over. For the last two thousand years she has been abused, misused, maligned and cast out by those "in control". Her worshippers have suffered rape, the rack, nail screws, stonings, skewerings, stampede, flayings, quartings, burning, drowning, disembowlment and any number of unmentionable tortures in the quest to rid the world of her influence. And yet she lives on, not in our memories as a quaint fertility object from a distant and barbarous past, but as a living breathing regenerating entity upon which all humans reside. She is Gaia (Gaea), the Great Earth Mother. She is also the triple Goddess; maid, mother, and crone or the creator, the sustainer and the destroyer. She is the virgin AND she is the sacred whore. The Goddess is back, (although she never left) and she is seeking retribution for the sins of the fathers and the sins of the sons back seven generations.
To understand the defilement of The Great Mother we need only look to the language of our times. As children we were instructed not to say certain words, because they were "bad words". "Cunt, bitch and whore", are representative of those words. Yet when we investigate their etymology we find not words of debasement, but words of honor and names of the Great Mother.
The Bitch Goddess of antiquity was known in all the Indo European cultures, beginning with the Great Bitch Sarama who led the Vedic dogs of death. Artemis-Diana, leader of the Scythian alani or "hunting dogs" was another such Bitch Goddess. Harlots or "bitches" were identified in the ancient Roman cult of the Goddess Lupa, the Wolf Bitch, whose priestesses the lupae gave their name to prostitutes in general. [read the poem!]
Cunt (Kunda): Derived from the Oriental Great Goddess Cunti, also known as The Yoni (vulva) of the Uni-verse. Other words coming from the same source are "cunabula", a cradle or first abode, "Cunina," a Roman Goddess who protected children in the cradle, "cuntipotent, having all powerful cunt-magic, "cunicle", a hole or passage, "cundy"; a culvert; also cunning, kenning and ken meaning knowledge, learning, insight, remembrance and wisdom. In ancient writings the meaning of the word was synonymous with "woman". Kunda : Saharan, Goddess of the Kuntahs a tribe who traced their beginnings to "the cleft of the Goddess". Kundas were children begotten out of wedlock and were considered divine gifts of the Goddess Kunda.
Horae : Multi Cultural, Known in Persia as "houris", in Egypt as "Ladies of the Hour", in Babylon as "harines". Semetics called them "whores" after Hor (meaning a hole) who was the ancestress of the Horites. In Greece the Horae were Aphrodite's celestial nymphs, who performed the Dances of the Hours, acted as midwives to the Gods and inspired earthly Horae (harlot priestesses) to train men in Sexual Mysteries. The dance the hora was based on the priestesses' imitation of the zodiacal circling of "hours". Time-keeping is known as horology because of the systems devised by these ancient priestesses of the Goddess. The Horae were called "fair ones, begetters of all things, who in appointed order bring on day and night, summer and winter, so as to make months and years grow full." The Vestal Virgins serving in the temples of Vesta and Hestia in Greece and Rome were originally harlot-priestesses. The temples of Aphrodite at Eryx, Corinth and Cyprus were served by a thousand sacred harlots apiece. The promiscuous priestess-shamans of Japan were called Holy Mothers. Every Babylonian woman prostituted herself in the temple before marriage. The original meaning of the word prostitute is "unmarried woman". (Women's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets. . .Walker, B.)
The words "cunt, bitch and whore" are not slang, a dialect or any marginal form but true language words of the oldest stock. Words are not evil or good, they simply are. It is the connotation that society gives them which labels them "bad". In the case of these Goddess related words it was society (now ancient society), indoctrinated by pagan-hating religious hierarchy who sought to defame the feminine in any and all forms. It is time we become reeducated to the true meanings of language and seek to reinstate The Great Mother on her rightful throne of authority, wisdom and knowledge.
In all things there is polarity and the polarity allows balance. White is to black, day is to night, male is to female, positive is to negative, up is to down, in the same way that virgin is to the whore or creator is to destroyer. We do not judge the day as being "better" than the night, nor black as being more powerful than white. We only experience day because it is balanced by night, or summer as balanced by winter. Who are we then to judge a whore as being less righteous than a virgin? When we understand that, all is balance; all has an opposite pole. We can even make peace with the atrocities of the dark ages for they were balanced by the strides made in the Renaissance. A dark age vs. an age of enlightenment.
One of the most revered and most powerful Goddesses of all time is Kali. Her worship and unbroken Hindu lineage stretches back into antiquity. She is the Great Goddess in her Destroyer aspect, balanced and counterpoint for the Goddess in her creator aspect yet, she is the three in one. In her emanation as Anath she ruled the Middle East back to Neolithic times. In Central America she is The Lady of The Serpent Skirt, her skirt an apron of severed phalluses. Lurena Bobbitt is her modern day emanation.
Kali is depicted with black skin. She wears a necklace of skulls, carries a knife to cut through illusion, a mirror of reflection and drinks from a skull cup of blood. She stands above her disemboweled lover, phallus erect, his blood feeding the earth. Her visage is terrifying. She is loved and feared for her destructive powers, for she is both womb and tomb simultaneously. It is upon Kali's destroyer aspect that the angry, punishing, castrating Father God was based. Yet how much more terrible does she seem than her watered down male version?
It is confusing to think of the Goddess as virgin and the Goddess simultaneously as whore. Yet even in the cheap imitation (Christianity), both Mary's were adopted in their respective positions. The virgin/whore split into two aspects of the same divine feminine. In truth, prior to Christianity the temple virgin was the temple whore (Isis the woman in Red, She of the Red Apparel, Vieled Isis). Two sides of the same coin. This can only be true because the sacred prostitute was ordained by the Great Mother herself. The divine feminine does not seek to condemn sexuality but to raise it to it's true place as an act of spirituality. In ancient times the temples of the Goddess served as healing and cleansing centers for warriors returning from battle. Only by lying with a sacred prostitute (who became the earthly incarnation of the Goddess) could a man cleanse himself of the acts of violation committed in war and be reborn through the Mother and into society. Women as keepers of the secrets and mysteries of sexuality are the teachers and must reclaim their rightful place as the path to the Goddess.
The founding church father's understood the power inherent in sexuality. They understood that to repress and suppress the populace they needed to control the very act of sexuality. They accomplished this by condemning it as diabolical and women along with it. The church said, "Women are without souls." and thus no better than demons. Women became the fall guys so that a handful of clergy could hold power, authority, and the purse strings in their ever widening grasp. The word "devil" comes directly from the word "deva". The original devas were the nature spirits of the pagan Earth centered religions. The church took all things sacred to The Great Mother and made them profane, even to profaning the Earth herself. She has been raped and plundered and torn end to end. In her death throes she coughs up poison gases (in the form of volcanoes) in resistance. She shifts and quakes grinding her plates in tutonic activity trying to rub the burr from under the saddle of patriarchal oppression. She is not giving up easily but her struggle is apparent. And through all this sickness and pestilence we see rising signs of repentance.
As in the days of the Christos when the sacrificial gods Tammuz/Dumuzi were consorts the powerful Ishtar and Innana, men seeking to honor the Goddess entered the priesthood performing self castration as an act of contrition. To become closer to the Goddess they emasculated themselves in an attempt to be more like women, having a hole instead of a phallus. Later the church fathers emulated the attire of women by adopting robes as an emblem of their "holy" office. Today the numbers of men seeking to have sex changes is growing as men protest the rape of the Great Mother and seek to emulate femininity. Often times they take jobs working in sex clubs or find themselves on the street as "outcasts" of society who now "service" the men they themselves no longer wanted to be. Patriarchal traditions, so long upheld as "the only way" are falling apart as the foundations of society collapse heralding the new millennium. In some cases the sex changed men become dominatrix, stylistically punishing "establishment man" for his acts of control and domination in the outside world. The controlling men (lawyers, company presidents, high profile businessmen) seek ritual debasement and submission to purge their day to day guilt. These scenes recall the flailings of early devout monks and nuns beating themselves into a frenzy of zealous ecstacy. (For an informed and enlightened view of Domina work follow this link to another site.)
How do we make sense of such seemingly alien behaviors? We must search our own closets, basements, attics and backrooms for clues. As we are still products of our parents, many of whom were dominating, controlling and abusive, we have within us an ingrained sense of guilt for wrong doing, imagined or otherwise. The abused child becomes the child abuser. When there is no sense of love, acceptance, warmth or forgiveness what might pass for feelings of "love" may in fact be those of the opposite pole. If our parents always yelled at us and hit us (saying, "I'm only doing this because I love you."), we may now experience "love" in a raised voice and a violent touch. By submitting to dominating behaviors are the dominators (of patriarchal society) simply trying to tap into the "love" feelings of their childhoods? Only by going back to the source and finding the point of departure can we seek to heal the rift that separates so many abused from a conscious awareness of what real love is, rather than simply what feels like "love" because that is what is remember.
Exploring the "shadow" within ourselves in not a "bad" thing nor something to be feared or condemned. It simply is an opportunity to experience the polarity of the light. The Dark Mother is calling us to witness her death and destruction at the hands of the tyrant. We are microcosm in a macrocosm. By taking such paths and finding where they lead we can better walk the 180 degrees around the circle and reemerge into the day light. The return of Quetzalcoatl is eminent. The winged serpent who unites the power of sexuality with the purity of spirit taking both to a higher level. By "becoming" our dominating parents we can understand, forgive and heal their behaviors so that we do not perpetrate "insanity" on the next generation. We see the light only because we experience darkness. The cycle is endless as is the Great Mother in her many guises and rotations. It is up to us to find the balance point, to seek to raise conscious awareness. To find and found a new Earth centered religion that seeks to honor the Great Mother in all her forms and guises, to honor the feminine and most of all to reclaim our sacred sexuality. It is time to reinstate the SACRED "prostitute" to a place of honor for through her we reach the Goddess within ourselves, a Goddess who exists within men as well as women.
© March 6, 1997, Ariel Isis, Maui, HI