In yesterday’s DM we meditated on a “revolution in values” that is symbolized by moving from Patriarchy’s preoccupations with power-over to a Biblically grounded power-with, that is to say, compassion and a justice-based value system.
Such a revolution is found with the prophets of Israel and with the teaching and example of Jesus and also in the work of the Divine Feminine. The “Magnificat” of Mary articulates well the “routing of the proud of heart,” the “exaltation of the lowly,” and more (Lk 1:46-55), as I discussed in the DM for January 31.
Carl Jung says that archetypes return when we need them, and the archetype of the Cosmic Mary and the Black Madonna are very much in need today when the face of fascism and patriarchal privilege is showing itself in many guises. Today’s appeals court decision turning down an attempt to declare that any president is immune from prosecution rejects an extreme effort to assert one individual’s power over that of the people and the common good.
Two questions arise:
- Are the gospel values and the values the Divine Feminine represents just an aspiration–or are they real?
- Does compassion represent mammal values of kinship and compassion that are needed to restrict the values of reptilian brain dominance?
Human creativity is so powerful that it needs to be steered and directed by values like justice and compassion, which urge our caring about future generations and peoples and species other than ourselves. All this because we belong to a “web of creation” as Hildegard called it.
We are part of a larger whole, a sacred cosmos, a “common good” that Aquinas says is “more divine” (divinius est) than just the good of an individual or a particular tribe.
All this is symbolized by the archetype of the Cosmic Mary, the Divine Mother, as well as within the arena of the Black Madonna. One cannot remember the strength of Mary and the prayers attributed to her in the Gospels without remembering the Black Madonna who is undergoing a resurgence in our time.
To be continued.
See Matthew Fox, The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors To Awaken the Divine Feminine, pp. 231-244.
And Fox, “Our Mother is Dying,” in Fox, The Coming of the Cosmic Christ: The Healing of Mother Earth and the Birth of a Global Renaissance, pp. 11-34.
See also Fox, Creativity: Where the Divine and Human Meet.
Banner Image: The Black Madonna of Częstochowa and Christ Child with rainbow halos, similar to designs from Pride Parade in Częstochowa. Wikimedia Commons.
Queries for Contemplation
Meditate on the two questions posed in this essay. How do you respond to them from your deepest center?
The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine
To awaken what Fox calls “the sacred masculine,” he unearths ten metaphors, or archetypes, ranging from the Green Man, an ancient pagan symbol of our fundamental relationship with nature, to the Spiritual Warrior….These timeless archetypes can inspire men to pursue their higher calling to connect to their deepest selves and to reinvent the world.
“Every man on this planet should read this book — not to mention every woman who wants to understand the struggles, often unconscious, that shape the men they know.” — Rabbi Michael Lerner, author of The Left Hand of God
The Coming of the Cosmic Christ: The Healing of Mother Earth and the Birth of a Global Renaissance
In what may be considered the most comprehensive outline of the Christian paradigm shift of our Age, Matthew Fox eloquently foreshadows the manner in which the spirit of Christ resurrects in terms of the return to an earth-based mysticism, the expression of creativity, mystical sexuality, the respect due the young, the rebirth of effective forms of worship—all of these mirroring the ongoing blessings of Mother Earth and the recovery of Eros, the feminine aspect of the Divine.
“The eighth wonder of the world…convincing proof that our Western religious tradition does indeed have the depth of imagination to reinvent its faith.” — Brian Swimme, author of The Universe Story and Journey of the Universe.
Creativity: Where the Divine and Human Meet
Because creativity is the key to both our genius and beauty as a species but also to our capacity for evil, we need to teach creativity and to teach ways of steering this God-like power in directions that promote love of life (biophilia) and not love of death (necrophilia). Pushing well beyond the bounds of conventional Christian doctrine, Fox’s focus on creativity attempts nothing less than to shape a new ethic.
“Matt Fox is a pilgrim who seeks a path into the church of tomorrow. Countless numbers will be happy to follow his lead.” –Bishop John Shelby Spong, author, Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism, Living in Sin