The Original Great Mother Tradition
Mother Worship

MatriTalks 63


Questions & Answers
Han Marie Stiekema Sermes

Q. Personally, I feel, that "Black Madonna's" are one of the most exciting features in Western religion. Hence, I look forward to your comments.

A.  Indeed, they have been and still are objects of greatest devotion, exceeding the common Virgin and even Christ.

Q. What could possibly be the reason for that?

A. Despite all oppression, indoctrination and manipulation from the side of the church, people have always preserved their intuition for True Mystery, which is symbolized by blackness.

Q. Despite slogans like "Christ is the Light that overcomes darkness", the centuries' long intimidation, frightening people with "the forces of darkness", the fear for the "devil" etc. etc.?

A. Absolutely. The Deepest Insight cannot be manipulated. Thus people have been coming again and again to the sites: Rocamadour, Chartres, Le Puy, Montserrat, Loreto, Tindari, Einsiedeln, Altötting, Guadeloupe and countless others.

Q. Why the church has not simply closed the sites?

A. That would have caused widespread revolt. Anyway, from the beginning, the strategy of the church has been either destruction of "pagan" sanctuaries or "incorporating" them, hoping that the latter would lead to increased devotion to their own saints.

Q. Which in a way seems to have been successful.

A. That's right. On the other hand, they are still very nervous about "their" Black Madonna's. Even today Black Madonna's have "mysteriously" disappeared. Others have been imprisoned in colossal structures (churches), like the Loreto and the Einsiedeln Madonna's.

Q. Going back to the beginning. What exactly is the attraction of the Madonna's?

A. In order to come a little closer to the Mystery, we have to go back in time. As you know, people have worshipped the Eternal Feminine for hundred thousands of years. The earliest proofs of this are the Mother statues, f.i. found in Europe, Asia and Africa*.

* See "Return of the Mother"

Q. Please, go on.

A. One of the most impressive examples is the Mother Goddess Nuth from Egypt. That She was considered universal, is demonstrated by the inscription on Her temple saying: "I am all that has been, that is, and that will be". Nuth was black, symbolizing the dark Cosmic Womb. Every morning the Light (Sun) was born out of Her, while returning to Her at sunset. Hence, She represents the Original Mother, Who rules over life and death.

Q.  Nuth isn't very well known in contrast to Isis, for instance.

A. Yes, indeed. The Original Great Mother suffered from decline, "giving birth" to local (Mother) Goddesses, representing only a part of Her Original Power. The Goddesses, that still come very close to Her are Isis, Cybele and Artemis. Proof of the lineage is, that all three of them were black. It were these three Goddesses, who were incorporated in the pantheon of the Roman Empire. Through the latter, they found their way throughout Europe.

Q. Some say, that the crusaders have brought the Black Madonna's to Europe.

A. That cannot be excluded. For instance, the Knights Templar for sure, were devoted to the Black Madonna. On the other hand, local (Celtic) Goddesses existed in Pre-Christian Europe, together with their "exotic" sisters from the Middle East, who had already penetrated large areas, e.g. Soisson, Paris, Lyon, Madrid, Sicily and countless other places being under the patronage of one of the Goddesses. Even in the sixth century ACE....there was still an Isis temple in Northern France. 

Q. Thus, a direct connection between the "pagan" Goddesses and the Black Madonna's cannot be excluded?

A. That's right. Returning to your earlier question. The attraction of the Black Madonna's consists of the fact, that they are representing the Original Great Mother. As has been stated above, there has been always a underlying continuity with regard to the devotion. Prove for this, is the legend of St.Meinrad, saint and devotee of the Black Madonna of Einsiedeln, Switzerland.*

* See: "The Black Madonna of Einsiedeln".

Q. Could you elaborate?

A. For the details, I would like to refer to the link mentioned above. In short, the legend is a rare account of the Madonna, representing the Original Great Mother. She was the Deity of the Black Forest ("Finsterwald"). Her sanctuary was devoted to Her by Her Son Jesus (instead of the other way round, as it is usually the case). The church was forbidden to inaugurate Her place, emphasizing, that She - and not the church - is the highest authority, etc. etc.

Q. How would you evaluate the status of the Virgin Mary in the Catholic church?

A. As you know in 431 c.e. during the Concilium of Ephese the people forced the church to re-install the Great Mother as their main deity. Hence, it was decided that Mary is the "Mother of God". Note: not the "Mother of Jesus" but the "Mother of God".* The purpose of this definition was, that all parties could read "their own truth" in it. For the church she is the fomer, while for the latter She represented the ancient Great Mother.

* The church defended its position by emphasizing that Jesus as Christ is "God", deliberately creating confusion about the matter. 

Q. An ambiguous figure.

A. During the centuries the church did everything to strip Mary of "Her" original power. What was left was a symbolic figure. As always the church preferred to have a diplomatic answer to the problem, instead of a truthful one. It wants to please the millions of Mary devotees, without endangering its power position. It wants to conceal, rather than to reveal, taking the advantage but not willing to face the consequences of its own "dogma's". I on the other hand emphasize the Truth, taking the definitions of the church literally. Mary as the image of the Great Mother is indeed the "Mother of God" and the "Queen of Heaven".  It means that She as the Cosmic Womb is giving birth to the Divine. God appears not to be the Father, but the Son.

Q. Which is quite a revolutionary thought.

A. It seems that way. In reality people have always felt that Mary should occupy the highest position in the "pantheon". That explains why She and not God or Jesus is generating the greatest religious passions and devotion. In Spain and not only there, She is often occupying the central position behind the altar, while Christ has a very decisive second position. In the Middle Ages for instance, people revered the "Shrine Madonna". She had two doors in front. If you opened them the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost appeared, symbolizing the birth of all three out of the Great Mother.

Q. Reason for a revival?

A. The "Revival" of the Great Mother is in and all around us. Those, who have eyes, see it. Others will see it later. The Mother has revealed Herself in such an overwhelming way. She will be unstoppable (laughing).     

Help, the Mother is coming!

Don't worry, She will find you.

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Last revising: 02/07/10