I was recently watching an episode of “Designing Women” and it immediately made me think of this blog. Although I usually enjoy Julia’s rants and raves, this particular one did not set will with me. Apparently, the firm’s phone number accidentally got mixed up with a psychic bookstore’s number and a lot of people were calling the girls thinking they were calling the bookstore. At one point, Julia answered the phone and pretended to be the bookstore. She proceeded to tell the customer that they no longer carried books on mediums because they had discovered that it was just a farce and that crystals were “just rocks.”
Of course, the audience laughed and everyone assumed that Julia was right. It was just a reminder to me; however, of how little respect Wicca actually receives from the general population.
But that’s really an aside. Today I wanted to focus on a prevalent concept in Wicca-the triple Goddess. Dating back to the legend of Persephone and Demeter, the triple Goddess consist of the maiden, mother, and crone. (Not to be confused with the father, the son, and the Holy Spirit.) So who are these people and what do they do?
The maiden, also known as the “new moon” in the cycle, is the youngest of the three. She is the innocent, the virgin, the seeker. In terms of my own life, I think of myself as the maiden up until the point that I had children. The maiden asks questions, is sometimes lead astray, and is full of passion. Her love is quick and powerful, but not always long-lasting. She is not flighty, but she moves.
The maiden is also fierce and strong. She can be gentle as well as a warrior. Diana was a maiden, with her horses and her weapons. The maiden belongs to no one and to everyone.
The mother is the nurturer. This is the face that you see as you are dying. The mother is not always kind, but always takes care of you and makes choices out of love for you. The mother is the creator and is often referred to as “Mother Earth”, “Mother Nature” and so on. A tumultuous relationship often exists with the mother, but that’s the way it goes in child/parental relationships.
The mother holds the keys to a lot of life’s mysteries. As the person who gives birth, she is all-knowing and is able to offer comfort and love, but can also seem cruel and unkind. She is the full moon.
The dark moon is the crone. The crone is often the image that we get of witches at Halloween, and it’s not an altogether inaccurate depiction-except for the black hat and warts. The crone is considered an older woman, although she doesn’t have to be decrepit. There is no certain age that pertains to this phase.
The crone is the vessel of life. She holds the traditions, knowledge, and secrets that have been passed down for generations. She is a healer, a fighter, and at peace with the world. She is no longer a young maiden or a mother, in a sense that she has performed the duties that were required of her, yet she still holds onto those aspects as well. She is all-knowing. She judges and watches over time.
A lot of women, and men too, fear the crone. As women, we don’t really want to age. Yet, the crone is as essential as the maiden and the mother. In the cycle of life, we must have death before we can have rebirth.
In effect, the Triple Goddess is merely the cycle of life. You don’t have to be A mother to be THE mother. The different stages don’t come at set time period or ages, either. Every women is capable of being all three, just as every woman holds the Goddess inside of her.
As I get older, I find comfort in the fact that the Goddess exists in three forms. I have many friends who say that you couldn’t pay them to return to high school again, and I kind of feel like that with the maiden. As for myself, I am the mother now and I am content in that. I miss being young, feeling like the warrior, and having the carefree nature that comes with the maiden, but I also like the more womanly feeling that I get at this stage in my life.
I do sometimes fear the crone-not just becoming her but of the idea of her in general. Sometimes I feel her eyes watching me and judging me and this makes me nervous. On the other hand, I know that when I reach that point in my life I will undoubtedly find peace within her, as I have found it in the other two as well.
In the meantime, enjoy the person that you are. You won’t be able to go back to that again. And perhaps you won’t even want to.
Your Warm and Caring “Resident Witch In Charge”