I’ve been inspired to write a memoir of my personal experiences with spirits. I struggle to see the value of it, however I have been guided on multiple levels to do this work in spite of my reservations. So I write.
In an effort to get the ball rolling, I thought I would share some of the preliminary ideas here, and see how folks respond. I don’t consider myself a teacher or an authority on spirits and magic, I have had a lifetime of experiences though and it seems these experiences may help others get an idea what it looks like to live this way.
Over the years I have been developing a defined relationship with a spirit I know as The Queen of heaven. I know her by many particular names like Hekate, Inanna, Diana, Juno and Mary, to name a few. I have had various experiences with these divine beings that have lead me to realize they represent, for me, the most palpable expression of divinity that I can personally interact with. Often, they come of their own accord, unsolicited. Other times I have been chastised for calling them for unsatisfactory reasons.
Ok, that’s all I’ve got for now.
Hekate has been the most consistent and available representation of the Queen of Heaven in my practice. She first introduced herself as an ethereal woman dressed in a flowing silver-white gown, who sang in a gentle high pitched tone. She said nothing, but did leave me with the unmistakable impression that she recognized my efforts. She came as a giant snake goddess another time. She was giant and looked quite scary, though I honestly didn’t feel fear. She told me she protects me and others from going to far out into the dark waters. I took this to mean spiritual realms I have no understanding of and chthonic realms. She was quite friendly in spite of her appearance and told me she her ability to instill fear in us, among other traits, protects us from those very realms. Finally, I have had direct experience of lamiae, which details I won’t share currently. Suffice it to say, divinity comes in both light and dark cloaks. The mythology and historical considerations about these beings are not to be overlooked for those wishing to appropriately protect members of their family. What has been written, I have experienced and I will leave it at that except to say I mention these lamiae in connection with the queen of heaven to illustrate the non binary experience of divinity. They truly are master of both light and darkness.
‘Queen of Heaven’ is a title that has been given to many figures throughout history. During antiquity in the Middle East, we see the title used for a number of goddesses: Inanna, Anat, Nut, Isis, Ishtar, Astarte, and possibly Asherah (in the Book of Jeremiah). In the West, we see the title used for Hera, Juno, and most familiar to modern people, Mary, the mother of Jesus. In the Far East, the title belongs to Doumu Of Chinese and Taoist religion, Mazu, a Chinese sea goddess graced with the title, and the Queen Mother of the West: Xiwangmu in Chinese sources, Seiōbo in Japan, Seowangmo in Korea, and Tây Vương Mẫu in Vietnam.
The Lodge chose the Queen of Heaven as our patron, to allow the members of the lodge to conceive of her in whatever vision they so desire. A fan of Margaret Barker’s temple theology may desire to conceive of the Queen of Heaven as Asherah, a feminine deity worshiped in the temple of Jerusalem alongside El, the male creator God. Another member may be deeply devoted to Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and focus on the wide body of literature and spiritual writings relating to that Queen of Heaven. Still another may focus on the Taoist Doumu, and her associations with the red infant Dao enshrined in the human body. This ability to be varied but also united as a group is one of the main aspects of the Friary, and one the Lodge sought to embody when choosing a patron.