Tag Archives: life-death-life

Abraham’s Path: The Ambiguous Way

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Abraham’s Path: The Ambiguous Way. Join us 6/12/14 http://www.facebook.com/events/403867586418328

Working closely with Baba Yaga lately, ambiguity has been one of the central themes.  I was thrilled at the release of Maleficent, and seeing an ambiguous female character portrayed sympathetically is huge, I tell you, HUGE.  Ambiguity is something that is central to the Wise Woman tradition and all of the Life/Death/Life goddesses (who are the most powerful).  Yet its something that women, caught in the crossfires of Maddona/Whore syndrome, have had little societal support to step in to.

In thinking about this, I’ve turned to the stories that brought me to the ball to begin with:  those of the Abrahamic tradition.  The story of Abraham is a story of ambiguity, questioning, and uncertainty.  How very odd that the traditions that followed are now so marked by black & white thinking and claims to certainty.  I think its time to look at these stories again and work from there.

I’ve republished one of my first blogs from 2009:

“Abraham’s relationship to God is marked by great sacrifices: to ask a tribal desert-dweller to leave their family and society is worse than death. Indeed, what makes Abraham’s story so relevant to our lives today is that even now we still find this to be a terribly frightening prospect. We define ourselves by our families, our culture, our geography, our language, our food, the religious practice we were raised with… Abraham left all of these things and embarked on a unique path. He would not lose that rugged individualism and continued to live and act in ways that were far from the societal norms, but were in alignment with the convictions of his heart, and his relationship with his Creator. Abraham shows us that questioning does not necessarily mean the dissection and death of faith, but is rather the basis and edification of True faith.”

Read the full blog post on The Deeper Marriage.

 

Wax On, Wax Off

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When I tell the story of Vasilissa, most listeners are as terrified of Baba Yaga as the story’s heroine. She lives deep in the forest in a house that dances and whirls on chicken legs. It is surrounded by a fence made of bones, with skulls that illuminate the yard- making it bright as daylight in the middle of the night.

She is an Arch-Crone. A Wild Woman. A force of Nature not to be tamed- and oh how that ruins one’s reputation in “civil” society. She understands and accepts the Life-Death-Life cycle and is thus a necessary teacher for anyone looking to step into their full Authentic power.

How you see the tasks says everything about where you are and where you're going.

Why does she frighten us so? There’s no doubt that she is an aide to those of a pure heart- Vasilissa being one of them. Do we question the purity of our own hearts and souls? To what degree is her reputation actually based on her nature and actions, and to what degree is it a projection of our own feelings of self-doubt and self-hatred?

By the time Vasilissa comes on the clearing in the woods where Baba Yaga’s hut lives, we’ve seen her slaving away for her step-mother and step-sisters. Every task completed is an excuse for more work to be piled on, and more criticism to be heaped on that when all is said and done. At first, it seems that Baba Yaga will just do more of the same… but something here is different. There is no criticism levied when all is said an done.

Perhaps we got Baba Yaga all wrong… What’s going on here? Is there a meaning to the tasks she’s assigned Vasilissa?  What skills would Vasilissa be developing while doing the Baba’s bidding?

We’ll be looking more deeply at Baba Yaga’s character Thursday 7/11/13 at the Food & Folktales event in Downtown Mesa.  Join us!