There are many different perspectives about the life of Mary Magdalene and what she represents. In the Gospels, Mary washes Jesus’s feet, is there at his crucifixion, and is one of the first people who saw him after his resurrection. Interestingly, many people call her a prostitute, although the Gospels never specifically say that this is true.
Another perspective about Mary Magdalene comes from the Gnostic Gospels, which indicate that Mary was a disciple of Jesus. Some have concluded that she was a temple priestess, while others speculate that she was the bride of Christ.
Regardless of the exact nature of Mary Magdalene’s relationship with Jesus, she represents an archetypal aspect of the sacred feminine that is both gentle and strong, and is calling us forth (as women and men) from the shadows of the neglected feminine principle and into the light. These aspects of the feminine principle are connected to sexuality, strength, and an unshakable commitment to truth and the inherent dignity of all people.
To better understand the qualities and gifts of Mary Magdalene’s archetypal spirit, it can be helpful to observe the aspects of the sacred feminine embodied by Mary, the Blessed Mother. The archetype of the Blessed Mother represents the nurturing and compassionate virgin. Her presence is pure, patient, motherly, and accepting. In contrast, Mary Magdalene’s presence is mysterious, passionate, provocative, and fervently committed to the truth. Oftentimes, these more fiery aspects of the sacred feminine have been neglected, unlike the pure and nurturing archetypal qualities of the feminine principle that are more readily embraced within the collective consciousness.
It’s helpful to remember that both of these aspects of the feminine principle are important on the path of becoming fully embodied and expressed as a woman. With Mother Mary and Mary Magdalene as our guides, we can see how within each woman there exists a pure, nurturing virgin and a passionate, mysterious priestess.
Since all people will benefit when the wholeness of the sacred feminine is embraced and brought into balanced relationship with the sacred masculine, connecting with the presence of Mary Magdalene is one way to reclaim the mysterious, passionate aspects of the feminine principle. In a similar way that one may ask for guidance and support from the Blessed Mother, Mary Magdalene is available and happy to help us on our path. Call upon her for help with forgiveness (of self and others), as well as for support on the path of reclaiming your power, passion, and voice as a woman.
With love & gratitude ~ Erin Stohl