The Mother: Compassion
Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet expresses a lesson of the Mother aspect of the Goddess with his famous quote: “My religion is simple. My religion is kindness.”
The Mother aspect of the Great Goddess is perhaps the most well known. After all, we all have mothers and are typically familiar with the qualities of a healthy mother-figure regardless of our own individual upbringings.
Hundreds of images of the Mother Goddess have been found that date back to the Stone Age. Characteristics of motherhood and fertility are commonly found in their design as they bare exaggerated breasts and bellies. The exaggerated belly conceptualizes qualities of the womb – creation, protection, etc. – as something present in the “creator” and something to be harnessed within oneself. In turn, the engorged breasts illustrate that nourishment is a necessity for all living things and is able to be provided only by other living things.
In myth the Mother appears to have many characteristics, but the most common are those associated with creation and nourishment. She is often seen as the Earth itself, producing and giving freely of the things that her children need to survive.
As with the Maiden, the Mother is not only found within beings who are physical mothers. She is in all things at all times regardless of fertility, gender, or age. Every person contains an “Inner Mother” – an aspect of themselves that is capable of unconditional love.
The Mother aspect of the Goddess is the Teacher of Compassion. After going through the processes and revelations brought on by embracing the Maiden within, the Mother suddenly surfaces and begins to take the reigns.
As you learn to remove judgment and accept Oneness you may begin to notice her voice inside your head, urging you to find compassion for that boss that drives you crazy or the clerk at the grocery store who seems to be taking too much time out of your day. The Mother teaches us to love all people and all life.
One of the most valuable lessons of the Mother is compassion for self. This falls right in line with the concept of non-judgment of self. The Maiden removes judgment and the Mother replaces it with compassion.
The “darker” (for lack of a better word) side of the Mother is one of destruction. She is willing to consume life back into herself when necessary while teaching us that death has a purpose as a part of life.
The Mother is also the archetype of a fierce protector who will defend the lives of her children with her last breath. In this way we understand that life should be fought for and defended.
The Mother is connected with the traditional interpretations of the element of Fire. Fire is transformational energy; destroying and creating all at once. Fire is the primeval force of creation. Where as the Maiden provides inspiration, the Mother takes those ideas and molds them in her fire, like a blacksmith with a fine sword, and gives them life.
The Mother can be felt with the heat of the sun or the warmth of your hearth. Allow her into your heart and she will show you all of the possibilities that come with the presence of unconditional love, kindness, and compassion.
Affirmation of the Mother
Use this affirmation daily to imbue yourself with the compassion of the Mother.
Your spirit is the creating force of love
That nourishes and perpetuates life.
Let my heart be filled with your patience,
And your endless compassion for all things.
I rest always within your eternal embrace.
A Journey with the Mother
Sit in a comfortable, quiet place. Light candles, incense, or anything that may set the mood for you. You may choose to listen to soft, soothing music.
You begin on a wooded path, the same path that you walked to find the Maiden. Except this time the path is lined with red roses of every shape and variety. There are growing things everywhere; bushes and shrubs, trees and flowering herbs. The sweet smell of summer is in the air.
Overhead the sun is high and bursting with heat. The heat is not oppressive and the thick canopy of trees above shields you from the directness of its light. You are comfortable and warm.
Animals move and make sounds nearby. Beside you is a doe grazing on the forest greens. She stares at you with big brown eyes and welcomes you in her silent way.
As you walk the path take the time to investigate your surroundings. Remember that time has no meaning in this place and that you are free to roam the wilderness around you.
Finally you come to the familiar gate in front of the cottage. They are now both covered in blossoms of every shade of red. Remove the trappings of your daily life and leave them at the gate before pushing it open to step into the garden of the Goddess.
You have just closed the gate behind you when a woman opens the door of the cottage. As she steps over the threshold she greets with a smile and a little nod of her head. You feel a pleasant warmth spread over you and you send her a smile in return.
She wears a gown the color of the roses around her with hints of deep green that match her eyes. Her hair is tied up in a bun behind her head and her belly is swollen with new life.
You remain where you are as the woman walks towards you. Her eyes sweep over you from head to feet.
When she is standing directly in front of you her eyes lock onto yours and she peers deep into your spirit, into who you truly are. Do you hide anything from her? Is there something you don’t want her to know?
After a moment she puts her hand to your cheek and smiles with her eyes. She puts her arms around you and pulls your head gently to rest on her chest. Do you resist this contact or do you let the Mother embrace you as a child that has come home? She pulls you up again, her hands resting on your shoulders, and says:
“I accept you exactly the way you are. I love you as I have always loved you; unconditionally and as your mother. I will always be in this place, waiting for your visits, but know also that I am always within you for we are one spirit.”
Talk for a time with the Lady. Go into the cottage if you like. After all, this is your house; your mother’s house. Stay for a while and let your mother teach you what she knows or just lounge in the safety of your spiritual home.
When you are ready to leave, embrace the Mother and promise to return. Take only what you need from the gate before returning to the path. Walk back at your leisure allowing your consciousness to surface slowly.
Embracing the Mother Ritual
You will need at least one candle, your favorite incense, and a mirror. A full length mirror would be perfect but any mirror will do. If possible the ritual should be performed at the peak of the full moon, before the moon begins to wane.
This ritual can be easily done in the bathroom after a nice cleansing bath. If fact, the bathroom may actually be the best place since you should be unclothed as you were for the Maiden ritual.
Why so much nakedness? Well, the purposes of these short, sweet, and simple rituals are geared towards the self. When you are naked there is nothing to define you but you. There are no stylish shoes, designer tops, etc. There is only you.
Now, if you choose to take a ritual bath add some herbs or oils to the water that are symbolic of or remind you of the Mother. You might choose to use the meditation you read earlier and journey with the Mother while bathing.
When you get out of the bath take your time to towel off slowly, put on moisturizer, etc. Take care of yourself. The candles and incense could have already been lit while you were in the bath. If they are not get them going now.
Invite the Mother in your own words. You can choose to be specific or call upon the Mother aspect of the Great Goddess.
Stand before the mirror without clothes on. If you have long hair tie it back so you can see the whole of your face. While gazing in the mirror recite the following:
Nourishing Mother, allow me to find compassion for myself so that I may accept my flaws and move past them. May I be successful in creating the self and the life I desire. You are always with me and I am always home.
Get dressed and go outside to be with the earth and the moon. Bring your candle with you or light a small fire in a barbeque or outdoor fire pit. You may choose to chant.
The ritual is ended here. Be sure to make note of your experiences in your journal.
Prayers and Chants of the Mother
Warming flame of compassion,
I embrace you within myself,
And dance with you ‘round the fire.
Let me be a protector of life,
And a bringer of peace.
My heart sings your melody
And my spirit is forever loved.
Demeter of the grain,
Loving Earth Mother,
Mysterious Queen of Eleusis,
Let your light surround me and be within me.
May all hate be forgotten.
May all love be restored.
Mother Demeter, bless me with your gifts.
Mother of Summer,
All blooming Dame,
I am your heart’s drummer.
And the carrier of your flame.
The Mother awakens within me.
Now and always I know love.
the mother: part of the book of tridea by ps. grian debandia of circle of the green