…and the Re-emerging Sacred Feminine
© Emily Trinkaus – first published by The Mountain Astrologer 2015 / 07.04.2015
In 2011, I set out on a quest to get to know the Goddess, and my starting point was Venus. My natal Venus is at 10° Libra, in the crosshairs of the Uranus–Pluto square that was just beginning to heat up. I felt a life-or-death intensity about uncovering and reclaiming the Sacred Feminine, in my own life and in the life of the collective. I knew what the shadow feminine looked like: obsession with appearance and an unattainable standard of beauty; codependence and romance addiction; eating disorders and “stuff” disorders (hoarding, hyper-consumption). But I didn’t have a reference point for an empowered and liberated feminine. As Marion Woodman has said, “[T]he feminine is so difficult … to talk about … because so few people have experienced it.” 1
Very early in my Venus project, Mary Magdalene appeared, totally unexpected and uninvited. I wasn’t raised in the Church and had no particular interest in Christianity, so my initial reaction was, “What’s Mary Magdalene got to do with it?” But once I delved into her story, I got it. For the past 2,000 years, during the Age of Pisces, Christianity has been the dominant paradigm in the West, and we’re all steeped in a belief system that has distorted and diminished the feminine. I could see that getting back to the roots of the closing Piscean Age, revealing and transforming the story of Christianity’s “hidden Goddess,” was essential to my project. But I was surprised to find numerous explicit links between Venus and Mary Magdalene. This article explores some of those findings and what they might mean for restoring the Sacred Feminine.
Healing the Piscean Paradigm
As we move out of the Age of Pisces, which began around the time of the birth of Christ, the distortions and shadows of the closing age are being brought to light, ripe for healing. Opinions about when one age ends and the next begins vary widely — some say we’re already in the Age of Aquarius, and some believe we won’t get there for another few centuries. More than the exact time of the shift, what seems important is the recognition that we’re in the transition — a time of heightened chaos and turmoil as one paradigm dies and the new one is born.
The symbol for Pisces is two fish swimming in opposite directions but bound together, representing physical reality and the invisible, matter and energy, body and spirit. Pisces is the divine paradox: We are both of this world and not of this world, infinite consciousness yet, while embodied, bound by the limits of space and time. As the last sign of the zodiac, Pisces also signifies oneness, unity, and wholeness. At the end of the cycle, everything dissolves back into the ocean of consciousness, returning to Source.
Early Christianity was made up of a wide range of sects, teachings, and practices, and the Roman Empire’s initial response to the new religion was persecution. But that changed in 313 C.E., when the emperor Constantine adopted Christianity as the state religion. By 325 C.E., Rome had codified one “official” version of Christianity, 2 — one that served the interests of the Empire. Orthodox Christianity has enforced the shadow Piscean belief that spirit and matter are separate, exalting the former and demonizing the latter. Spirit is masculine, while the “lowly” body/matter is feminine. God is outside of us. Heaven is where we go once we’re done suffering on Earth. Sex is a sin, so we’re all doomed from the start. And if we want to bridge spirit and matter, to commune with the Divine, we need an outside mediator, a (male) priest or minister.
As we transition out of the Piscean Age, the old paradigms are crumbling and the Church is in crisis. Sex-abuse scandals — long kept secret by the Vatican — are now erupting into the mainstream. Rather than being a perverse anomaly, it turns out that a shocking number of child sexual abuse cases have been reported, and covered up by Church authorities, for hundreds of years. 3 The rejection of the body/matter, of sexuality, of the feminine, as shameful and sinful has a high price, paid most dearly by children and women.
Mary Magdalene’s Rebirth
Reflecting the changing Piscean paradigm and the culture’s hunger for the return of the Divine Feminine, Mary Magdalene is making a dramatic comeback. For the past 2,000 years, she’s been cast in the role of whore, in contrast to the virgin, played by her counterpart Mother Mary. But the truth is that there’s no description of Mary Magdalene as a prostitute in the scriptures. In fact, she wasn’t assigned this role until 591 C.E.4 The portrait of Mary Magdalene as a “recovering sinner,” writes biblical scholar Cynthia Bourgeault, is “almost entirely a concoction of patristic and medieval Western piety (interlaced with some not-so-pious political agendas).” 5 Even the Vatican admitted its error and revoked her designation as prostitute in 1969, but no one seems to have gotten the memo, and her image as the penitent whore persists.6
Just as a majority of Christians are unaware of Mary Magdalene’s declassification as a whore, most are also ignorant of alternative Christian gospels: the Gospel of Mary Magdalene, discovered in 1896, and the Nag Hammadi Gnostic Gospels, discovered in 1945. In these versions of Christ’s life and teachings, the “hidden” Goddess is not so hidden. Women play a much more central role and are respected as equals, while Mary Magdalene appears as Christ’s best-loved disciple, “the Apostle of Apostles.” Bourgeault explains: “Mary Magdalene is seen as ‘first among the apostles’… because she gets the message. Of all the disciples, she is the only one who fully understands what Jesus is teaching and can reproduce it in her own life.” She is also revealed to be Christ’s intimate companion, with strong suggestions of an erotic component to their relationship. 7
Dan Brown’s wildly popular The Da Vinci Code — first as a best-selling novel (2003) and then as a Hollywood movie (2006) — challenged orthodox Christianity with an alternative view of Mary Magdalene. The Da Vinci Code puts forth the idea that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were husband and wife, and that the “Holy Grail” is not some special cup or chalice but the sacred bloodline descending from their offspring. However, the suppression and distortion of Mary Magdalene’s identity in the New Testament gospels suggest that her role was more radical and less socially acceptable than simply being Jesus’ wife. According to researcher Lynn Picknett, “the single most important piece of evidence for their not being married is one of glaring omission: simply, there is no mention of a ‘Miriam, wife of the Savior’ or ‘Mary, Christ’s spouse’ in either the New Testament or any of the known Gnostic writings.” 8
Mary the Light-Bringer
The explicit links between Mary Magdalene and Venus perhaps point to Mary’s true identity. In the south of France, where Mary Magdalene landed and established her ministry after the crucifixion, she was known as “Mary Lucifera” or “Mary the Light-bringer.” 9 Lucifer is now popularly associated with the devil, conflated with the figure of Satan, but to the ancient Romans, Lucifer (Latin for “light-bringer”) referred to the Morning Star, aka Venus. Picknett explains: “This was a time-honored tradition: pagan goddesses were known, for example, as ‘Diana Lucifera’ or ‘Isis Lucifer’ to signify their power to illumine mind and soul … to open up both body and psyche to the Holy Light.” 10
The planet Venus has a long history of association with the Divine Feminine. The oldest written story of the Goddess (as far as we know) is the myth of the Sumerian Inanna, Queen of Heaven, recorded on cuneiform tablets in approximately 2500 B.C.E. Shamanic astrologer Daniel Giamario (among others) has correlated the story of the Sumerian Goddess — her descent to the Underworld and her return — with the astronomical cycle of Venus (her synodic cycle). 11 Every eight years, Venus traces the shape of a five-pointed star or pentagram in the sky, and ancient depictions of the Goddess often include the image of a pentagram, or sometimes an eight-pointed star.
Another intriguing link between Venus and Mary Magdalene relates to one of the relics possessed by the Knights Templar, who protected and passed on the “heretical” teachings of Christ. Anthony Harris reveals that, according to Inquisition records, among the objects taken from the Knights Templar were two pieces of a woman’s skull, labeled “caput LVIII ” (caput is Latin for “head”). 12 According to Picknett and Clive Prince, the Knights were said to worship a “severed head … [that] could make the trees flower and the land fertile,” and that “represented … Mary Magdalene in the Christian interpretation.”13 Flowering trees and fertile land are the domain of Venus, goddess of fertility.
As there are no other “caputs,” numbered one to 57, it’s safe to assume that 58 is a code. Harris makes a connection between 58 and the Goddess, in the sense that five and eight add up to 13, the number of lunar cycles (and menstrual cycles) in one year. 14 But what jumped out at me was the connection with Venus — five and eight (and their sum, 13) are numbers sacred to Venus, because her synodic cycle forms a five-pointed star in the sky every eight years.
Harris adds another clue to the mystery of “caput 58,” that its inscription also bore the symbol for Virgo, the sign opposite Pisces. During a particular Age, the opposite sign is often distorted or denigrated, serving as the hidden shadow to the dominant archetypes or themes. Virgo is the only sign in the zodiac represented by the single figure of a woman, one holding an ear of corn or sheaf of wheat, and this sign has been associated with the Earth Goddess since ancient Mesopotamia. 15 The glyph for Virgo is said to represent the intestines — the part of the body traditionally ruled by Virgo — but also the ovaries, vagina, and uterus, which are associated with the feminine power to create life.
Although in modern usage “virgin” typically means sexually inexperienced or chaste, to the ancients it meant “whole unto herself,” in the sense that the Great Mother created life all on her own. To the earliest humans, creating new life must have seemed like a magical and miraculous superpower, thus projected onto the Goddess, giver of all life. By linking Mary Magdalene with Virgo, those attempting to preserve heretical Christian teachings may have been pointing to her significance as the hidden Goddess to Christ’s God.
From Priestess to Prostitute
Virgin also meant a sovereign, unmarried woman, often referring to a priestess dedicated to the Goddess. For thousands of years, Venus in her various guises — Inanna, Astarte, Ashtoreth, Isis — was worshiped in temples staffed by priestesses who, far from our modern interpretation of “virgin,” participated in sacred sexuality with members of the community. The priestesses were called venerii and taught venia, sexual practices for connecting with the Divine. The Venusian priestesses, Picknett writes, “gave men ecstatic pleasure that would transcend mere sex: the moment of orgasm was believed to propel them briefly into the presence of the gods, to present them with a transcendent experience of enlightenment.” It was mostly women (and some cross-dressing men) who led the sexual rites, because “it was believed that women were naturally enlightened.” 16
The Goddess religions that flourished for thousands of years were brutally destroyed by the onslaught of patriarchal cultures, and the Old Testament both describes and advocates for this destruction. Merlin Stone reveals that “Ashtoreth, the despised ‘pagan’ deity of the Old Testament was … actually Astarte — the Great Goddess, as She was known in Canaan, the Near Eastern Queen of Heaven. Those heathen idol worshipers of the Bible had been praying to a woman god.” 17
The story of Adam and Eve’s eviction from Eden is a key piece of anti-Goddess propaganda. Eve is a decidedly Venusian character — ancient goddesses were commonly depicted with snakes, symbols of erotic power and spiritual knowledge. The apple is one of Venus’s sacred fruits; when you cut it in half horizontally, you see a five-pointed star. Ronnie Gayle Dreyer, in her book on Venus, explains that the Eden allegory “reverses the symbolism contained in the Sumerian legend of Inanna, whose regenerative powers are received from the huluppu (date palm) tree. While Inanna’s sexuality promised fecundity of the earth, Eve’s ‘fruitful’ offer resulted in expulsion from Eden and the stripping of her powers.” 18
Venus’s European evolution followed a similar path. By the time of the ancient Greeks, around 1000 B.C.E., Venus had lost her earlier powers as fertility goddess and regenerator of the life force and became primarily the goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite. 19 Zeus, king of the gods, fearing that Aphrodite’s irresistible beauty will cause rivalry and war among the other gods, marries her off to Hephaestus. Aphrodite disregards her marriage vows and has affairs with multiple gods and mortals, thereby stirring up jealousy, rivalry, and female competition (shadow Venus). She’s often portrayed as vain and self-serving, interested only in her own erotic satisfaction. In one of her most infamous havoc-wreaking acts, she starts the Trojan War.
In the patriarchal paradigm, female sexuality has become a problem — no longer celebrated, honored, and ritualized as the ultimate creative act, a gift to humanity and to the land, the sacred source of life itself. The Goddess’s sexual fulfillment no longer ensures fertility but rather generates suffering and chaos. So, where does female sexuality go? As the shrines of Astarte were rededicated to Aphrodite, she became increasingly known as the patroness of prostitution. 20 The role of the sacredly sexual priestess was transformed into that of the temple harlot. Sexuality in general, and women’s sexuality in particular, became taboo, sinful, separate from and at odds with divinity, relegated to red-light districts rather than an integral part of the community.
Mary the Anointer
In the early years of Christianity, there were still remnants of the Goddess religion. One reason we know this is that early Christian patriarchs “denounced the temples ‘dedicated to the foul devil who goes by the name of Venus — a school of wickedness for all the votaries of unchasteness.'” 21 To those who were ignorant of the function of the sacredly sexual priestesses, or whose culture and religion opposed their practices, the priestesses would have been seen as ordinary streetwalkers. 22 Mary Magdalene may have been referred to as a prostitute for more than the simple reason of disparaging her character — and this label, though erroneous, may actually point in the direction of truth.
One of Mary Magdalene’s key scenes in the canonical gospels is her anointing of Jesus’ feet with the precious oil of spikenard. The word “Christ” literally means “the anointed one,” but anointing was not a Jewish custom. Rather, anointing with spikenard oil was part of the ancient pagan ritual of the hieros gamos, or sacred marriage. The anointing of the head, feet, and genitals “was part of the ritual preparation for penetration during the rite … in which the priest–king was flooded with the power of the god, while the priestess–queen became possessed by the great goddess.” 23
Shortly after his anointing, Jesus is betrayed by Judas, leading to his crucifixion, followed by his resurrection three days later. These events mimic the story of Isis and Osiris, as well as Inanna and Dumuzi, Cybele and Attis, Venus and Adonis, and other myths of the sacred marriage. 24 “In all versions of the sacred marriage, the representative of the goddess, in the form of her priestess, united sexually with the chosen king before his sacrificial death. Three days afterwards the god rose again, and the land was fertile once more.” 25 The Gnostic gospels make explicit reference to an initiation known as “the Bridal Chamber.” 26 Could it be that Jesus’ inner circle of initiates participated in sacred sexuality, and that Mary Magdalene, a priestess trained in the Venusian arts, used her magic to assist Jesus through his death and resurrection transfiguration?
The notion of a sexual Jesus might seem totally far-out to most moderns, whose view of Christianity has been conditioned by centuries of celibate priests. And so much of the history of early Christianity has been deliberately destroyed and distorted (and perhaps hidden in the Vatican basement!) that we may never know the truth of what really happened. But the history of the persecution itself — exactly who and what were targeted by the Church — may shed some light on this issue.
The War on Venus
Rome persecuted “heretics” in isolated cases, from the beginning of Christianity, but it wasn’t until the founding of the Inquisition in the 13th century that persecution started operating as a “well-oiled, highly dedicated machine, a conveyor belt for tipping whole communities into Hell.” 27 The machine’s first victims were the Cathars, a Christian sect in the south of France who held the radical belief that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were lovers — not legally married, but lovers. In fact, Picknett asserts that the Inquisition was “originally set up specifically for the interrogation and execution of the Cathars.” 28
What started out as the Vatican’s targeted persecution of Christian heretics expanded into an all-out attack on the women of Europe — a “gendercide” that continued through the 18th century and resulted in the deaths of anywhere from 60,000 to one million women (for various reasons, it’s hard to get a clear body count). Though some men were also persecuted for witchcraft, the vast majority, more than 90 percent, were women. As Anne Llewellyn Barstow writes in Witchcraze: “Having a female body was the factor most likely to render one vulnerable to being called a witch.” And the female body was suspect: “The classic statement from the Malleus Maleficarum [Hammer of Witches], ‘all witchcraft comes from carnal lust, which is in women insatiable,’ summed up the widespread belief that women were by nature oversexed, wicked, and therefore dangerous to men.” 29 While sexuality seemed to be the root issue for the Vatican’s assault on the Cathars, sexuality was also a significant aspect of the persecution of women that continued for centuries. All phases of the processing of alleged witches were sexualized — from the accusations of witchcraft, which often involved sexual acts with the devil; to the searching and “pricking” of women’s bodies (including their genitals) for signs of the “devil’s mark” or “devil’s teat”; to methods of torture that were explicitly sexual; to the executions themselves, which sometimes included cutting off a woman’s breasts before burning her at the stake. (Delving into this chapter of history is not for the faint of heart.) In this war on Venus, a war on the feminine, sexual violence forcefully and effectively severed spirit from body. It became dangerous to be in a body, especially a woman’s body.
Why was a sexual relationship between Jesus and Mary Magdalene so threatening to the Church? And why the full-scale assault on women’s sexuality? The ancients knew that sexuality is a powerful and easily accessible avenue to higher consciousness and spiritual power. This is why Venus was the “light-bringer” — through the body, through sexuality, enlightening consciousness. People who are grounded in their bodies and connected with their infinite, divine, spirit selves are not easy to control or manipulate. By turning Jesus into a celibate and by demonizing women’s sexuality, the Roman Empire used religion to disempower its subjects.
It was not only the Roman Empire that benefited from suppressing the feminine, but the broader Western project of expanding empire. Barstow points out that the peak years of the European witch hunts, 1560–1760, coincided with Western colonial expansion and the Atlantic slave trade. 30 Cate Montana, in her memoir Unearthing Venus, tells a story that illuminates the connection between colonialism and women’s disempowerment. A turning point in her own understanding of the feminine comes when she interviews John Perkins, who lived and studied with the Shuar tribe in the Amazon rainforest. Perkins was told that one of the roles of women — their most important job, on which the survival of the tribe depends — is “telling men when it is time to stop … [M]en hunt animals and cut trees even when there is enough meat and wood, unless women rein them in.” 31 Perkins tells of a Shuar shaman coming to visit the United States, asking, “Where are your women? Why are they not telling the men to stop?” 32
Barstow reports that, as a legacy of the witch hunts, European women became afraid to speak up, and protested less: “From having, at the end of the Middle Ages, a reputation for being scolds and shrews, bawdy and aggressive, women began to change into the passive, submissive type that symbolized them by the mid-nineteenth century.” 33 The centuries-long war on Venus, which tortured the feminine out of existence and made it dangerous for a woman to speak up or speak out, left industrial civilization free to dominate and exploit the planet and its peoples.
Reimagining and Reviving Venus
Our astrological lens is necessarily colored by our culture, and our view of Venus has been affected by the assault on the feminine. We’ve projected the more “passive and submissive” view of the feminine onto Venus and the signs she rules — Taurus, Libra, and (in her exaltation) Pisces. For example, Geraldine Thorsten, in God Herself, notes that “traditional astrology … championed Aries as the dynamo of the zodiac, whereas Taurus came off as an amiable dullard at best,” but she reveals that, in the earliest zodiacs, Taurus was actually considered the first sign. Thorsten credits Taurus’s demotion to the transition to patriarchy: “We’re familiar with the patriarchal view through astrological descriptions that equate earth with passivity … Our matriarchal ancestors … had a very different sense of the earth. Not only did they view it as a gift to be shared and cherished, they believed it was a very active quantity.” 34
Wanting to bring online this more “active,” powerful, and empowering version of Venus, I’m now drawn to pre-Aphrodite goddesses as mythological reference points. Instead of Botticelli’s Venus demurely riding to shore on her seashell (which, incidentally, may have been a coded reference to Mary Magdalene), 35 I’m seeing Inanna standing on the backs of two lionesses, as she was often pictured. And rather than viewing Venus as the planet of partnership and marriage, I now see her as representing sacred sexuality. This is essentially the thesis of Demetra George’s talk on “Venus, Vesta, and Juno,” in which she argues that the asteroid Juno is a more accurate indicator of the marriage partner archetype. By making sexuality the domain of Mars (the masculine), we — and the dominant culture — have ignored or suppressed Venus’s ancient roots as the goddess of fertility and eroticism, and the connection between the two: When the Goddess was well-pleased sexually, via her priestesses who embodied the Divine Feminine, then the land would be fertile. 36
Re-wedding sexuality and the sacred, bringing divinity back into the body, making matter “matter” once again by re-infusing it with spirit — these I believe are our main projects here at the end of the Age of Pisces. And I think this is what the links between Venus and Mary Magdalene point to: that as Christianity’s hidden Goddess is returned to her rightful place, it’s important that she’s seen as a sacredly sexual being, rather than simply as Jesus’ wife.
Venus’s exaltation in Pisces perhaps points to her as a key for healing the Piscean paradigm. My initial association between Venus and Pisces was that Aphrodite was born from the sea. But I discovered an association between Venus and Pisces that predates the Greek myth. The symbol for Pisces is said to come from the Vesica Piscis (literally, “the bladder of a fish”), an ancient geometrical figure consisting of two overlapping circles, where the perimeter of each circle intersects with the other’s center. The Vesica Pisces has been associated with the Goddess for thousands of years, and more specifically, with the feminine power of giving birth — the almond-shaped figure formed by the overlapping circles symbolizes the vagina. 37
Researcher Derek Murphy explains: “In the mysteries of Ephesus, the Goddess wore this symbol [Vesica Pisces] over her genital region, and in the Osiris story, the lost penis was swallowed by a fish which represented the vulva of Isis. Likewise, in many examples of Christian art, Jesus Christ is proceeding from this symbol, representing his birth from the Goddess.”38 Murphy goes on to show how the Christian fish symbol actually comes from the Vesica Pisces — which you can see in the center shape, plus the lines of the tail.
Now, when I see the Christian fish symbol on the back of a car, I think, “Mary’s vulva,” and I imagine a religious paradigm that honors a woman’s body as sacred, that considers every birth a “divine birth,” as if the ability to create life were a miracle, as if life itself were a miracle. I imagine restoring — re-storying — Mary Magdalene to her role as Christ’s spiritual equal, and their Sacred Marriage as essential for opening his “body and psyche to the Holy Light,” in the tradition of the ancient Venusian priestesses.
Emily Trinkaus is the author of Creating with the Cosmos: An Astrological Guide to Awakening and Enhancing Creative Power, and the forthcoming Venus Revolution: A Radical Re-Visioning of the Feminine. She is also a BodyTalk Practitioner and combines astrology with energy medicine in her unique Astro-BodyTalk sessions. For more information, and to read her weekly blog, visit VirgoMagic.com. Find out about Emily’s monthly teleclass for women at FullMoonPriestess.com. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
© 2015 Emily Trinkaus – first published by The Mountain Astrologer
References and Notes:
1. See: www.feminist.com/resources/artspeech/genwom/conscious.html, “Conscious Femininity,” keynote speech for the 2004 Women & Power Conference by Marion Woodman (accessed December 2014).
2. Cynthia Bourgeault, The Meaning of Mary Magdalene: Discovering the Woman at the Heart of Christianity, Shambhala, 2010, p. 30.
3. See the 2012 documentary Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God.
4. Lynn Picknett, Mary Magdalene: Christianity’s Hidden Goddess, Magpie Books, 2003, p. 47.
5. Bourgeault, The Meaning of Mary Magdalene, p. 4.
6. Picknett, Mary Magdalene, p. 48.
7. Bourgeault, The Meaning of Mary Magdalene, p. 41.
8. Lynn Picknett, The Secret History of Lucifer: The Ancient Path to Knowledge and the Real Da Vinci Code, Carroll & Graf, 2005, p. 84.
9. Picknett, Mary Magdalene, p. 95.
10. Picknett’s The Secret History of Lucifer, which followed her book on Mary Magdalene, seeks to undo this conflation of Lucifer and Satan. See p. xiii.
11. Daniel Giamario, “The Synodic Cycles of Venus,” a talk at the United Astrology Conference, 2012.
12. Anthony Harris, The Sacred Virgin and the Holy Whore: The Book that Explodes the Secrets of Religion, Penguin Group, 1998, p. 60.
13. Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince, The Templar Revelation: Secret Guardians of the True Identity of Christ, Simon & Schuster, 1997, p. 121.
14. Harris, The Sacred Virgin, pp. 60 & 62.
15. See: www.skyscript.co.uk/virgo_myth.html, “Virgo: the Maiden,” by Deborah Houlding (accessed December 2014).
16. Picknett, The Secret History of Lucifer, p. 59.
17. Merlin Stone, When God Was a Woman, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1976, p. 9.
18. Ronnie Gale Dreyer, Venus: The Evolution of the Goddess and Her Planet, HarperCollins, 1994, p. 63.
19. Demetra George, “Venus, Vesta and Juno: The Erotic, Spiritual and Creative Dimensions in Relationship,” a talk for the United Astrology Conference, 1995.
21. Picknett, The Secret History of Lucifer, p. 59.
22. Picknett, Mary Magdalene, p. 48.
23. Ibid., p. 58.
24. Picknett, The Secret History of Lucifer, p. 72.
25. Picknett, Mary Magdalene, p. 60.
26. Picknett, The Secret History of Lucifer, p. 65.
27. Ibid., p. 138.
28. Picknett, Mary Magdalene, pp. 31 & 36.
29. Anne Llewellyn Barstow, Witchcraze: A New History of the European Witch Hunts, Pandora, 1994, pp. 16, 135–136.
30. Ibid., p. 12.
31. John Perkins, The Secret History of the American Empire: Economic Hit Men, Jackals, and the Truth about Global Corruption, Dutton, 2007, p. 69.
32. Quoted in Cate Montana, Unearthing Venus: My Search for the Woman Within, Watkins Publishing, 2013, p. 7.
33. Barstow, Witchcraze, p. 158.
34. Geraldine Thorsten, God Herself: The Feminine Roots of Astrology, Avon Books, 1980, pp. 3, 5, 27–28.
35. See Kathleen McGowan’s novel, The Poet Prince, Simon & Schuster, 2010 (Book III in her series The Magdalene Line).
36. George, “Venus, Vesta and Juno.”
37. See Derek Murphy’s article at www.holyblasphemy.net/marys-vulva-jesus-christ-vesica-pisces-and-the-christian-fish-symbol/ (accessed December 2014).
Image sources: Sandro Boticelli, The Birth of Venus, [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons – Leonardo DaVinci, Study for Madonna with the Yarnwinder, 1501 [Public domain], via www.wikiart.org – Carlo Crivelli, Maria Magdalena [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons – Sumerian Relief (Bruney Relief), “Queen of the Night” – George Romney, Maria Magdalena [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons -Georges de La Tour, Maria Magdalena [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons -Nicolas Régnier, Maria Magdalena [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
First published in: The Mountain Astrologer, Apr/May 2015ss