Sophia and the Chalice

april scs symbols

Clear blue skies and ancient mountain slopes

Despairing I search them tapping on elusive windows of hope

Another doctor, another hospital another encounter with fear and fate

Anxiety and trepidation mount in another waiting room

 

A tower rises boldly above the maze of medical buildings

In plain sight guiding like a beacon and I hear it speak

I know my journey will end there

But there are mountains to cross and miles to cover

In the dark of night I see the tower and the clear blue skies

Wearily I consider the mountains and the miles

Those that are behind me and those that are yet before me

Helplessly, I surrender to this journey

 

Searching for solace, my hands begin to craft

A full moon is rising in this dark night of the soul

Sacred Sanskrit symbols burning into the wood grain

Burning, scarring,  gaining meaning and significance

 

The windows of hope fly open and grace finds me longing

I pass by the tower reverently  lifting up mine eyes to this hill again

I see her – The Lady with the Lamp

Her voice that guided me over mountains and across many miles

 

Her lamp shines bright even amidst the clear blue skies

A solitary guidance through that Dark Night of The Soul

Sophia!

Endless, timeless holy, fount of wisdom – Sophia!

 

Sophia I called out

Sophia I learned to trust

In her bosom I rested my weary being

Sophia, her voice channelled, “You are here now!”

 

Chalice Divine, I call thee Blessed!

Chalice of life, sacred source of my blood, vessel of creation

Life and death danced harmoniously within your walls

Mother moon directing our seasons of living  and our seasons dying

 

Blessed are you Sophia

Blessed are the sacred words of the wise ones

Blessed are you chalice of creation

Blessed are you in your living and in your dying

 

Divine you must be for in your dying there is great living

Creativity flows again, a life blood through my being

The ancient one who guards the cross roads welcomes me mischievously

Adventure awaits, new mountains and new miles

 

She, who leaves gift offerings to remind me she is my companion

She, who changes form and is not confined

The one who is creation herself

This is the new season of my becoming

 

I am the creation

I am  life in all my changing forms

I am the mountains and the blue skies

I am the tower that beckons

I am the blood

I am the divine  chalice

I am the sacred words of the wise ones

I am beloved Sophia

I am the lamp that shines brightly

I am the formless ancient one at the crossroads

I am the roads and I am the traveller

Taking back the right to our rite of passage

Take Back our Rite of Passage Ceremony | Michelene Dianne Benson

As I am researching the first moon rite of passage process, I realise that many of us need that ceremony ourselves albeit many moons later. Without it we were left to a world of shame, loss and isolation in which we had to navigate our way through a harsh and unforgiving world.

Awakened women know that the rite of passage has as much to do with wisdom and well being as it does with physical care and understanding at menarche. Being welcomed, celebrated and nurtured into a sisterhood of support and wisdom is critical to the maiden, at her time of crossing, if she has any hope of growing confidently as a wild woman. One who is unapologetically in touch with her true beauty, power and strength.

We may have missed out on some decades of support and mentoring from the matriarchs who went missing for a few generations but we have heard the call to return.

Part of that return requires taking up the role as the guide and the mentor – to become the moonmothers and the crones. It is time give up the imposed mindset of the menstrual inconvenience of our bodies and restore the blessing thereof – to stand tall and grounded as the queen upon the moontime throne and the crone adorned with the mantle of honour.

To take back our ceremony is to forgive those who abandoned us and to give thanks for the guides who gracefully stepped in. To take back our ceremony is to bind up the wounds, bumps and bruises in the light of the moon and sing a song of restoration. We are taking back our ceremony when we reach out to the sisters who might have sat with us at our first moon ceremony and say “I missed you.”

To take back our ceremony is to sneak a red rose or a bright bead to her for the crown she might have worn that night. We take back our ceremony when we bestow blessings which flow from a sacred source so that the commitment we might have made to be our sisters’ keeper is honoured. Whatsoever things we might have done on that night, in time and space, we can do it now. Let us take back the first moon ceremony and restore the rights to the Rite of our Passage
To all my sisters … I missed you!

Photo by Michelene Dianne Benson

First published 24 September 2013

Celebrating the moon lodge

GODDESS TIME and I enter into the chamber with gratitude. Great is the celebration that I have been brought near to the knowledge that I was once denied. Intense are my prayers of thanksgiving that the secrets of old are restored to my understanding. My body, my blood, my nature and all the miracle I am sings in humility for redeeming grace. From this sacred chamber I chant sincerely the blessing upon every woman and girl. In the blessed awakening, I brave the possibility of red tents and sacred spaces that honor moontime for every woman and girl.

First published 2 December 2013

The Red Tent and other sanctuaries – instinctive call

An old picture of my daughter warms my heart as I remember how she loved building tents. Cardboard boxes, furry blankets and scarves were quickly resourced as building materials. I am sure the vast majority of us have these pics in our baby albums and in our memories.

In the middle of the lounge or in a corner at the far end of the garden, little tents and makeshift huts are a telltale sign that children are around and that some mischief and adventure is brewing or transpired recently. As mothers we often approach abandoned tents with bated breath wondering what remnants of our possessions we might find there. Surely, we have all been tempted to spy on the tents in the hope that we could catch a glimpse of the activities that require such secrecy. I must confess that I gazed upon these little dwellings nostalgically remembering my own adventures and mischief in tents from the era of my own childhood.

Perhaps each time that I drape the red tent with scarves and scatter fleecy throws and cushions, I am recreating that sanctuary that seemed almost instinctive. The desire to create in space and in time a dwelling that provides a holding space to be. A sanctuary which separates between the sights, sounds and activity of the outer world and the cherished calling of the inner world. A safe place, much like a womb in which I can be still, focus on self and grow. A chamber where the quiet but beckoning voices that are otherwise drowned by the noise of the outer world can at last be heard. The taboos and forbidden things find their expression comfortably in this dwelling place – not to remain as “mischief” of a patriarchal society but to find a voice so that we may learn how to raise them and become wise woman activists. It is here, in this nesting place, we eat from the hand of our own wise women and nurse our inner babe and our inner maidens.

May you find the cardboard boxes and the blanket shelters that honour the instinctive calling to come away …

Love and Light
M

First published 13 May 2014

My petticoats are showing

A heart felt discussion among sisters had us sharing the vulnerability of lonely. We tried to analyse and soon gave it up paying attention to the wisdom of the wise woman within. Wise woman wisdom that leads us via the valleys of vulnerability and into the shadows to find the wounds that have come up for healing.

This delightful discussion happened via a modern portal we call facebook. We weren’t at all bothered by “who might see” and even less concerned about the traditional conservatives who would prefer us never to speak of our wounds and our shame – let alone admit them publicly. One shared, another listened, more shared, others simply held the space. Compassion embraced authenticity and inevitability the path to healing was revealed.

A sister joined the circle and found her tears flowing which she shared with us on the wall. “Oops my slip is showing!” she said bowing out to catch her heart. I read it and smiled contently celebrating the freedom we have to show our slips (petticoat but the Freudian slip and now pun works well) whenever we choose. Our petticoats – the undergarments and intimate delicates which are frowned upon if revealed. They are much like our like our vulnerabilities – hidden truths and intimate struggles which we are expected to keep out of sight and out of mind. Heaven help us if they show for it will invoke all manner of criticism. We spend so much energy to keep up the façade that makes others happy and has us fit in. Tuck it in, pin it up, tie it down but never let it show! Make sure the garment of ego covers all.

In the Red Tent we grow to love our petticoats – embracing all our wounds and healing processes, our stories and scars! We honour them and are most enriched when we are trusted enough to gaze upon them with love. We even consider them quite delightful and they often cause raucous outbursts of knee slapping fun. We learn to dance in such a way that our petticoats show and spice up the room. Perhaps this is why I always loved gypsy skirts. The more lace hanging from the undergarments the more I celebrated myself wearing it. The layers of petticoats adorned with all sorts of bells and whistles and interesting trimmings always have me smiling in the most mischievous sort of way. My recent instructions to the seamstress stated – there should be lots of underbits and all sorts of stuff added to it. My petticoats complete the garment of me and as such they have great worth. I have no need to satisfy the dictates of those who are uncomfortable with my scars and wish them away. On the contrary, I will wear them a little longer than my dress of ego and adorn them with trinkets of meditation and celebration …

So don’t mind petticoats … admire them!

First published 23 April 2014

Day Twenty Three

witch

Oh my hatty, there is none so ratty

As dear old me, on day twenty three

Tears and biting, and sparks of lightning

For no reason at all, I’ll get into a brawl

I throw things like the phone and the pan

Beware, beware if you happen to be a man

My centre is gone, my chakras are twisted

Peace I wanted, but my hormones insisted

On day twenty three nobody reasons like me

If only they would listen and simply agree

Come day twenty three I’m the only one who is right

Why don’t they comply and end my plight

My bed, my socks and the warm water bottle

The only things I don’t throttle

Ranting and Raving, Get out of my face!

Please! Oh Please just give me my space!

Myself I really would love to explain

But I’ve no idea why I become such a pain

I know though that I have this in common

With many a human who is also a woman

First published 29 October 2013