Wednesday, 3 August 2016
A Living Myth
Since starting a relationship with my friend's son, our friendship has shifted in dynamic to become more or a mother-daughter one. As I carry a lot of fear and self-doubt, and rely on her help a lot, this dynamic has been safe and reassuring for me and I am so greatful to her, especially as my own mother is a couple hundred miles away (Love you both!!). However, as with any mother and daughter when it is time to leave the nest tensions and frustrations can arise. Such happened with my real mother, and when I returned home the first few times after moving out.
One morning during the conference tension had grown and some aggression spilled over. I looked over to the Lady of Avalon painting, asking for help, especially as we had a ceremony to do together that morning. The Lady smiled back and explained how this was all a part of a sacred mother-daughter myth being played out in our lives. Every hurt or tense feeling was a sacred part of it, necessary and special.
My friend was Demeter, Queen of the Earth, Mother to all; I was Her Daughter Kore, the maiden who always stood by Her Mother's side. In the myth, as I understand it, Kore had grown to the age where She yearned for Her own crown, to no longer be below Her loving Mother, but to be a Queen, a Woman, an equal in Her Own right. Such is often the cause when mothers and their teenage daughters begin to clash.
Kore chose to follow Her own path, to go with Hades (Her sexual awakening) or go to Hades (the underworld). The darkness of this place reflects Her journey of self-discovery, and of change, braving the unknown. Demeter is despairing, like many mothers do when their children first leave them. Here Kore chooses to eat the pomegranate seeds before She can be taken back home by Her elders (by Zeus). By eating these seeds She becomes Queen Persephone of the realm She has now mastered.
Likewise, it is time for me to make my own journey into womanhood. I have grown beside my Demeter and it is time to find my own crown. The crone aspect of the Goddess is calling me to the Otherworld of Avalon. I feel Her cauldron preparing to take me in. I know my journey will be nerve wracking, scary and challenging. My Demeter-Mother must let me go, knowing our Red thread will lead me back to Her. I will eat the pomegranate seeds (or the Apples of Avalon!) and in time I will find my own place and independent womanhood.
Myths are symbolic stories revealing the mysteries of life. Gods and Goddesses are often the lead actors in anthropomorphized form so that we can identify with them, for these myths are active in our own lives. The myth of the Mother and Daughter is something that repeats over and over in many cultures today and we could learn much wisdom from it, respecting the emotional difficulties that unfold.