Mary has an ancient history in the collective psychic imagination of mankind. Only her names (Asherah, Astarte, Isis, Diana, Ishtar, Venus, etc.) have changed over the centuries while her archetypal reality remains the same. She is referred to as wisdom present in the moment of creation, as co-redemptrix, as all-powerful, as the counterpart of the masculine force within the masculine and feminine fields of energy that exist in an inseparable unity. As the goddess of the divine feminine energy field within us, she is the feminine dimension of the Self. She is the spiritual vessel in which opposites combine. In her, ego and Self become united. In the same way, Mary and Jesus are counterpart personifications of the essential Self. The virginity of Mary means that incarnation is about the conception and birth of a higher consciousness without the intercession or necessity of any human agency, i.e. ego. Jesus is the personification of this and is, thus, spiritually, the son of a virgin mother. She is what we are meant to become. ~ adapted from *Mary Within, A Jungian Contemplation of Her Titles and Powers* by David Richo
The Immaculate Conception, celebrated on December 8th, is one of the most misunderstood concepts, even in the Catholic Church. Its significance is greater than that of Mary’s being born without the “stain of original sin” as it is interpreted. Neither does it refer to the virgin birth, although the virgin birth of Jesus to Mary is a physical representation of the Immaculate Conception.
To understand the meaning of the Immaculate Conception it is necessary to understand that before any “thing” was created there was no “thing” (nothing) in existence except the Father Spirit, the Source of all things. Once creation began it caused a disunity within this Source – that which was before anything was created and that which appeared after creation began. This second state is the Immaculate Conception – the beginning or womb of creation – through which the Word, Holy Spirit, or sound of “aum” was expressed to begin creation. This sound or Word was made flesh as Jesus, immaculately conceived in the womb of his mother, Mary. The birth of Mary to her mother, Ann, was also a virgin birth since the souls of both Jesus and Mary sprang from the Father Spirit, God, in the very beginning of creation. They were as one soul in the beginning of creation, separated only by the different ways in which they were expressed – Mary as the womb of creation, or mind responding perfectly to the Father to bring about creation, and Jesus as the Word of God, or the consciousness through which all things were created and experienced.The Immaculate Conception has been celebrated throughout past ages by personification of this concept – as Sophia, Wisdom, Isis, Eve and even Asherah, wife of God. The concept remains the same – the perfect response of mind to build matter according to the intent of God the Father – humankind being made in the likeness of God in that a human mind is the source of whatever is built in physical creation.
Lakshmi, The Hindu Version of the Immaculate Conception
Vishnu is a main Vedic God, the All-Pervading essence of all beings, the master of—and beyond—the past, present and future, one who supports, sustains and governs the Universe and originates and develops all elements within. Vishnu’s female counterpart is called Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity (both material and spiritual), fortune, and the embodiment of beauty. She is the consort of the god Vishnu. Also called Mahalakshmi, she has always existed. She is called Mother Earth. She is seen in two forms, the representation and totality of the material world or energy and the spiritual world or energy. Lakshmi is the power of Lord Vishnu. They are not separate beings, they are one. Lakshmi is depicted in her universal form as Shakti. Shakti is the concept, or personification, of divine feminine creative power, sometimes referred to as ‘The Great Divine Mother’ in Hinduism. On the earthly plane, Shakti most actively manifests through female embodiment and creativity/fertility, though it is also present in males in its potential, unmanifest form. Not only is the Shakti responsible for creation, it is also the agent of all change. Shakti is cosmic existence as well as liberation, its most significant form being the Kundalini Shakti, a mysterious psychospiritual force. Shakti exists in a state of having dependence on no-one, being interdependent with the entire universe. However, in other Hindu traditions, Shakti embodies the active feminine energy, being the female half of Shiva. (taken from Wikipedia)
A part of the beginning cycle of Spirit was completed with the birth of Jesus to Mary in that it brought Spirit into flesh enabling each one of us to become like Mary by giving birth to the Christ within our own consciousness once when we have aligned our wills with Love.
Additional information about these concepts can be found in my book, SPIRIT AND TRUTH, Finding Clarification of Christian Beliefs through the Words of Scientists, Scriptures, Sages and Seers. The book is available in print or electronic format from amazon.com – the electronic format can be read on your computer using the available download from Amazon.
Evil is a concept that causes a great deal of confusion. Seeing the horrors of evil causes many to question the existence of a loving God.
In order to understand evil it is necessary to understand its origin. There are myths that explain it as the fall of Adam and Eve from Paradise, and the banishment of the angel Lucifer from the Kingdom of Heaven. These allegories provide a way to conceptualize the way in which Spirit expressed Itself into matter. They show a separation between heaven and earth, angels and devils, good and evil. These are opposing spiritual forces that result in the material forces of positive and negative, attraction and repulsion and are the basis of atomic structure. They also provide us with the commonly understood idea of opposites.
In the beginning all was one within God and it is only through the opposing forces of positive and negative that creation as we know it became possible. Without these forces causing differences as opposites, everything would be the same everywhere and there would be no form, space or time as comprehended by mortals. In our daily experiences we find that opposites are merely expressions of different aspects of the same thing. A top cannot exist without a bottom, there has to be an up to have a down, evil would not be recognized without an awareness of good.
The forces of good and evil originate from a neutral center that is their Source (called the “Father” by Jesus), where both extremes are reconciled into one. A good example of this is temperature where there are extreme opposites of hot and cold. However, there is an undefined central point at which both extremes of temperature meet and blend into one, a place where there is neither hot nor cold, but where it is “just right.” Similarly, evil, weakness, and vice are the extremes of good, strength, and virtue, in the same way that cold is the extreme of hot. Between them is the “neutral center” – the place of the Father or Source of creation that possesses neither good nor evil but reconciles them both into One.
So it is that man, having free will, may direct his inner forces to either extreme, or work to establish harmony through a neutral center or “still point” within – a place where both extremes of good and evil are blended into harmony, peace and unity. While God’s purpose provided mankind with free will and the ability to reason, this awareness of choice has become corrupted through its use as misdirected power. It was not God but creatures who, because of ego, created evil through the use of negative forces to their own benefit.
Evil might be defined as complete disregard of the laws of God, causing a separation from God, while sin might be defined as wrong choice. Choices are tempered by whatever it is that each person believes to be good at the moment, and is an indication of who we are as individuals. The roots of sin are in selfishness as an expression of ego, the force of mind that presents itself in opposition to the mind of Spirit. Ego is the “false god” of the First Commandment that should not be placed above the Creator.
Whether anything is right or wrong is more a personal judgment than an intrinsic condition as it depends upon personal value systems. That which is considered good by one may be considered sin by another. For example, killing people in the name of God may be thought of as good by people having some particular belief while others consider it to be evil. However, every thought and action carries energetic vibrations from intentions, motivations and desires, and these will have a consequence. Because energy operates in cycles and returns to its source while attempting to come to a balance, whatever is sown is reaped.
The ability to choose between opposing situations or influences provides the opportunity to learn from the consequences of those choices and to gain in understanding. But in order to learn the difference between what is good and what is evil some goal or ideal is needed against which progress can be measured. Simply put, a decision must be made as to the kind of person we want to be and that has to be expressed through our words and deeds.
Before creation began, nothing existed that our human minds can comprehend. With creation, a duality existed between what had been, and what came to be. This duality was a kind of distinction between creation and its Source. The Source remained as it had always been, but now it contained another aspect of Itself, as that which It had created. All was one and yet there was a difference between the Source and Its creation.
This is very much like thinking a thought. The creator of the thought remains the same while the thought exists within the thinker. The existence of a thought requires a thinker, just as creation requires a Source. A person who thinks, and the thought, are two distinct things, yet they are both one, the thought being dependent upon the thinker for its existence. A similar comparison, used by many spiritual Masters, is that creation is God’s dream.
This duality continued through creation until physical matter developed. The physical then became distinct from that which began it, or as we would term it, the physical universe became separated from its spiritual beginning. This duality of heaven and earth exists within the Source that sustains all of creation and is a part of it, yet is distinct from it. This distinction, or the concept of opposites, is the idea behind duality.
Duality is a part of creation and is necessary for its existence because, without it, all would be one. Duality, for our three-dimensional consciousness, provides the distinction between top and bottom, up and down, hot and cold, here and there (space), what was and what will be (time).
Duality is associated most often with good and evil because of the extremes either may produce. Rarely recognized is the balancing point of duality that is its Source. The Source is the “still point,” or point at which all extremes become one – where there is no time or place, good or evil. It is the place of “here” and “now,” where patience, compassion, tolerance, gratitude, and Love reside within each and every one of us.
These concepts are explained in greater detail in my book, Spirit and Truth, Finding Clarification of Christian Beliefs through the Words of Scientists, Scriptures, Sages and Seers.