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Stone/Vessel Mysticism

The Great Mother as the primordial Reality can be found in myths all over the globe. "Light coming out of Darkness" is a theme which turns up in almost every great religion. The symbols representing the Great Mother can be traced even in outspoken patriarchal books and texts. Images like house, vessel, ship, stone, tree (of life), moon, well, grove, cave...and many others, can be found in our own pagan past, the indigenous traditions, the mystery religions of the Middle East and in all main religions. A fine example is the Jewish Ark of the Covenant. The Ark is called the "Home of Jahweh". It corresponds with the pre-patriarchal notion, that God dwells in the all-embracing Womb of the Mother ("House"), from which He is born and to which He will return.

In pre-islamic times the Ka'aba was a shrine of the (Mother)- goddess. The shrine contains a meteorite, considered to be "holy", because it came directly from the dark Womb of the universe. Still the Ka'aba is called the "House of God", a memory of the times, that God was considered to be the Son of the Mother. Its priests are still called the "servants of the old woman", while in the Hadj (Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca), people still walk seven times around the shrine, like in ancient times. The Ka'aba is a construction covered by a black cloth, which is the color of Darkness. Nobody is allowed to enter, which may be a reminder of a saying of Isis: "nobody has ever looked behind my veil". Later the Ka'aba was rebuilt several times and became the Holy of Holiest of Islam.

It is not a surprise, that in Christianity countless links can be found. The very presence of Maria as the "Mother of God" speaks volumes. The fact, that in the early centuries Christianity was using the moon as its symbol is less well known. However, many statues of Maria are still decorated with a moon. In litanies to the Virgin many descriptions remind one of Her original nature. Terms like "Vessel", "Ark of the Covenant" (...), "Queen of Heaven" or "Mother of the universe" don't need further comments. In later centuries mystics often expressed themselves accordingly. Among them is the famous book of Ruusbroec ("Van den Blinckenden Steen"/ "From the Shining Stone"). This time "Stone" had become an allegory for Christ though. It is a good example of how the original matriarchal meaning used to be rewritten, in order to support the patriarchal ideology. 

Going deeper into:

* Mother and Sons

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