I love these details from two of my favorite artworks depicting primordial earth mother goddesses. Above left is The Empress, conceptualized by Aleister Crowley and painted by Lady Frieda Harris circa 1939-41 for the Thoth Tarot. Above right is from artist Mark Ryden’s work entitled The Creatrix, completed and first exhibited in 2005. Although the images have stylistic differences, I see they share some distinct correspondences as well, and both conjure the lovely, intelligent, creative and powerful energies of this archetype.
The divine feminine is seen in the narratives and illustrations of goddesses from different cultures including yet not limited to, Demeter and Gaia of Greek mythology, Papatuanaku of the Maori, Shakti and Lakshmi of Hinduism, Venus of the Romans and our Solar System, and also as the Anima of Jungian psychology. This archetype is also correlated with the root chakra, known as Muladhara, located at the base of the spine. The foundation of our functioning stems from said root, where we hold beliefs and emotions about our environment and safety, as well as our right to exist and to have our physical needs met.
The pervasiveness of the primordial mother archetype though undeniable, seems to frequently be obscured amongst the fast-paced technology-focused lives in which so many of us find ourselves enmeshed. Functioning within such a framework often leads to thought and feelings of there being; scarcity of and competition for resources, frequent potential threats to physical and/or mental health, and the need to be in control, flawless, and always “onstage” and productive as individuals. While there may be some truth to those experiences, there are also ways of living from a belief system distinguished by abundance, clarity, confidence, spontaneity, vulnerability, and trust.
A potential remedy for symptoms related to anxiety, depression, and other conditions is to click into a more centered and pleasurable mindset, in which we may recognize and connect with the earth mother archetype, which is the birthright of all individuals. A swift survey of our surroundings should be a positive place to begin, and most likely will reveal the multitude of resources available and in near proximity to us. Some ways to start shifting to an abundance and self-love operating system and to communicate with our mind, body, and spirit are; cleaning, organizing, and decorating living spaces, cooking food for ourselves, wearing comfortable clothing and favorite scents, spending time in nature, tending to plants, and listening to music we find soothing and/or energizing.
By cultivating an environment and foundation which communicates to all of the senses that we love and can care for ourselves, we may begin to experience and know these truths at a cellular level, clearing the way for a fulfilling existence and increased talent to manifest our visions. Contact me if beginning a journey of this sort resonates with you, as these collaborations are rewarding and an honor for me to witness and facilitate.
written by Mark F. Barone, MA, LMHC
Arrien, Angeles (1997) The Tarot Handbook: Practical Applications of Ancient Visual Symbols. New York, NY: Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin
Brown, Brene (2012) Daring Greatly. New York, NY: Gotham Books
Duquette, Lon M. (2003) Understanding Aleister Crowley's Thoth Tarot. San Francisco, CA: Weiser Books
Judith, Anodea (2004) Eastern Body Western Mind: Psychology and the Chakra System as a Path to the Self. New York, NY: Celestial Arts
Jung, Carl G. (1961) Memories, Dreams, Reflections. New York, NY: Vintage Books
Ryden, Mark (2013) Pinxit, Cologne, Germany: Taschen
© 2017 Mark F. Barone, MA, LMHC
Catalyst Psychotherapy and Consulting
Seattle & West Seattle, WA