Holy Mother: Messenger of Love
“Celebrate the green trees growing from the ground, celebrate the new paradise we’ve found”
—Circle of Women, Celebrate the Rain song lyric
“I am the mother of all things and My love is poured upon the earth.”
—The Charge of the Goddess (Spiral Dance, Starhawk)
I recently read a satirical article about a Catholic priest who, after suffering a heart attack, was clinically dead for 48 minutes. During that time, he saw God and, according to the account in the World News Daily Report, the 71-year-old cleric said, “Her presence was both overwhelming and comforting…as reassuring as a mother’s embrace. The fact that God is a Holy Mother instead of a Holy Father doesn’t disturb me, she is everything I hoped she would be and even more!”
Regardless of the fictional nature of the piece (hidden in a small disclaimer at the end of the publication), the fact that this article went viral on the Internet indicates that it struck a chord with many people. Additionally, the idea that God is a Woman provoked a lot of interesting dialogue regarding the Divine.
How might our religious worldviews be transformed if we believed the Sacred Source of eternal and everlasting love includes the Feminine? Perhaps rather than religious teachings of a wrathful and vengeful God full of condemnation, we would be taught to celebrate life and to appreciate the breadth and beauty of the earth’s magnificent wonders. Like people rejoicing the birth of a baby, we might learn to praise trees growing from the ground, birds soaring high overhead, a bright sun warming the earth below, water cascading down over a steep rocky mountainside, and all life emerging from the great womb of Mother Earth.
March is National Women’s History Month, and March 8 is International Women’s Day. This month presents a wonderful opportunity to explore our religious hierarchies, language usage, and teachings, along with the global treatment of women and girls. It’s also an excellent time to inquire how we might become more inclusive and respectful of the myriad roles held by women in our society. Our mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts, wives, and grandmothers inhabit sacred space with us on this earth home. How would the lives of these extraordinary women change if we honored the Holy Mother?
In truth, no one knows for certain who or what we will encounter upon our death. What is true is that people who have faced near death experiences often report feeling enveloped by an almost indescribable sense of unconditional love. As I look from this earthly plane upon that joyful description, I wonder: What if upon death—before proceeding to a heavenly realm—we are greeted by a Celestial Being we did not anticipate: a Two-Spirit transgender guide, a young African boy, a Middle Eastern school girl, a Hispanic man without sight, an American Indian grandmother, or an Asian lesbian teenager. How would we answer if this divine presence gazes at us with enormous love and asks: Did you learn to love your earth family? How did you treat others while you were alive?
What if one of today’s prophets is a woman, and she told us to love all people, honor the earth, and learn to live in peace—would we heed her message with the same fervor as those who walked before? Would we treat her with the same reverence as Jesus, Muhammad, Moses, and Buddha? What if our daughters, wives, sisters, and grandmothers bring forth Her sacred blessings? Would we ever harm, disparage, or destroy a holy messenger of love?
In joy & gratitude,
Diana J. Ensign