Since I have come back from my stay at Lourdes, I have been working on a new series of Mary.
The philosopher Thomas Moore, in his wonderful works on Soul, really defines it for me. Everyone has a Soul and thus a religion of the Soul, and that may be found in the enchantment of everyday living, in art as a sacred undertaking, or it may be found in the practise and application of a holy book and its teachings.
I had no exposure to Divine Mary other than in the Christmas pageants at school, where she really played a rather minor role. I grew up raised in a Calvinistic religion and culture - a very austere philosophy, as you may know. But from a young age I had a tendency to withdraw into my own inner world, away from voices telling what to do and how to feel.
And in my dreams a beautiful woman used to come to me - I called her 'Beauty". She was usually dressed in blue and had a linen type headdress. She reminded me of a burning candle. Difficult to describe, but it was as though she is in a shimmering radiant light that pulled me up. I once described her to my best friend and she said, 'but that is Mother Mary!".
And then my life started to change drastically. At first, I read as much as I could and studied various sources and books to learn about Mary.
Then I went through a stage of throwing all that learning out. I had realised that the books give the writer's interpretation and also, the living Mary, became buried under a heap of jargon and definitions.
I visited many sacred places (you can read more about these on my blog http://pathofdivinelove.blogspot.com)
and eventually I ended at Lourdes.
What I experienced at Lourdes, words cannot capture. She is the Rosary and the Prayers and the faith of those who believe, but, She is so much more.
She is not bound by dogma, not even faith. She does not need you to pray to Her. She is always with you.
She is the Love that is within us all. She is the human capacity for kindness, caring and compassion. She is the mirror reflecting the Light within each and every soul. She is life itself.