Sunday, May 25, 2014

Mary of Magdalla

Mary, Mary!
She has emerged so beautifully! I'm awestruck and a little In Love with her (OK, a LOT in Love!)

Wee Atelier
When I last posted about her, I was just ready to add her hair ... and then finishing touches, more lights & darks, attention to details ...

In early May I borrowed a table easel from my artist cousin Wendy Thompson, got turquoise paint (Jamaican Sea) for facing wall, & moved a wardrobe that had contained a TV & it's trimmings into my wee dining nook - a space that's about 6' x 7.5'- turning it into my own Atelier, (the Room or studio where an artist creates)

Paint chip
I've been participating in several Facebook Artist Groups, & last week another artist working on her portrait of Mary Magdalene posted a link to a wonderful talk by Ana & Phillip Jones, the leaders of this upcoming (Sept, 2014) The Magdalene, the Grail & You

 I love the words that came to Ana in a dream: "Don't forget Chateau Cantal (sp?) Once a Grail Castle, Always a Grail Castle!"  Places where the Grail has been are vibrationally altered, the spiritual & energetic signature remains.

Added Hair
When Mary came to the South of France, she carried with her various artifacts (there's speculation around what she carried, was the grail a physical cup, or was it Mary's womb a vessel for Christ's Child? Did she have a copy of her gospel? ...) She is the only apostle known to have continued sharing his message,  teaching for 30 years after the crucifiction!

Ana was also given a Grail Riddle - "Forever will you journey, of this there is no doubt. The grail will lead you Inward, Upward & Out." When they visited a cave in Languedoc where Mary gave teachings, they experienced just that - going INto the cave (into ourselves, into the mystery) , then climbing UP a flight of stairs (raising our consciousness to another level) & then OUT (out of our own way, out of preconceptions, false ideals & beliefs)

A pilgrimage is a quest, whether we go physically, or in our dreams, visions, and art! We can each journey Inward, Upward & Out, any time we are ready. Shiloh speaks of our paintings being vessels for healing, healing Icons for both ourselves, in the creation, & for anyone who views them. This feels so true for Mary of Magdalla as she emerges into her shining radiance!

Lady Mary of Magdala
Ana said "Mary TRAVELLED! She didn't just sit around in one place, there are stories throughout Southern France, Languodoc & Provance, of her jourenies, her presence, the sacred objects she carried & her teachings. In the mid 90s while living at the coast, I wrote a story about Mary learning the hands on healing when she was a disciple, & I believe she did.

Through our art and stories, she is still on her healing journey ... I took her to my women's spiritual book group a couple of weeks ago, when I had finished her, & it was lovely to see reactions to her.  Several of the women asked for prints, so I guess that's a future project!

May Mary of Magdalla bless you, & may her Peace & healing presence radiate in & through you.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Beltane and Mary Magdalene

Mary's Altar
Bright Blessings of Beltane (early May)

One of my dad's favorite Easter song was 'In the Garden.'

Composer C. Austin Miles writes: "I seemed to be standing at the entrance to a garden, looking down a gently winding path shaded by olive branches. A woman in white walked slowly into the shadows. It was Mary. As she came to the tomb, she bent over to look in, & leaning her head upon her arm, she wept. Turning herself, she saw Jesus standing beside her: so did I. I knew it was he."

Awakening from his vision that March day in 1912, Miles wrote 'as quickly as the words could be formed the poem exactly as it has come down to us.'

Mary's Portal
My dad & I often sang it at Easter, & I've always loved it. This Easter artist Shiloh Sophia McCloud offered her video painting series on Mary Magdalene for 40 days, at no charge (!) & I signed up!

Mary, Mary!
April 28
I've been working on my painting since Saturday the 26th, and love the process, the painting, all of it!

The "Tea with your Muse' class I took in February was inspired by Shiloh's work, & it's nice to have some experience with her methods. We are part of the 'intentional creativity' movement, taking time to set up an altar, vision, 'listen' to what the painting/subject wants, and say little prayers along the way.

One of the first steps, after writing words of intention on the canvas, is to paint a first layer with 3 colours. Shiloh suggested seven strokes or 7 layers,  the last being the 'portal' for Mary to come through. She bespoke 7 being for 7 veils, or 7 things you want to overcome.
After writing my intention, & painting my layers, I scribed my 6 grandchildren's first initials onto the canvas, (A, E, G, K, K, & Z), plus two Ms for my grandmothers Mary & Minnie!

Over the last 20 years I've read several novels featuring Mary Magdalene, and a few years ago, I discovered Karen King's Gospel of Mary Magdalene at our Public Library. I was fascinated to read the fragments that have come down to us (from 3 different source scrolls, found with some of the other scrolls in Egypt) Mary's gospel appears to have been "well distributed in early Christian times and existed in both an original Greek and a Coptic language translation." The first & second World Wars in the last century interfered with publication until 1955.

work on eyes
The message  Mary of Magdala passed on is simple (& of course the other disciples argued with her, & grumped about HER receiving the message, not them!)

"Peace be with you. Receive my peace unto yourselves.
* Beware that no one lead you astray saying Lo here or lo there! For the Son of Man is within you.
* Follow after Him!  Those who seek Him will find Him.
* Go then and preach the gospel of the Kingdom.
* Do not lay down any rules beyond what I appointed you, and do not give a law like the lawgiver lest you be constrained by it."

 I'm using a bigger canvas, 18 X 24", & Shiloh's suggested pallet of colours, mostly Golden brand (some fluid, some in tubes). I've been paying visits to the local art shop, & the first round were on sale!

More layers on the face 4-30
Last weekend was also a parting, as our sweet inclusive 'peace & justice' church's Senior Pastor & his wife
are moving across the country to Beverly Mass, where he will minister to a different congregation. Many emotions are flowing, so it seems timely to be working on Mary!

There are several video segments left to watch, & am intrigued that in this class (the first directly from Shiloh that I've followed) we haven't added hair yet! (that's next! It's fun to just try things, & see how they turn out! I'm looking forward to my friend Elisabeth's return from Kansas, & painting together again.

I am working on doing whatever Shiloh suggests, adding layers of colour and reworking lines, glazing both the whole canvas & in certain areas, colour suggestions; AND getting lost in the process & in Mary!

So she's still a Work in Process, but getting close to completion!

I'm posting in Paint Party Friday & to the Red Thread Cafe.