Susan Marek's blog about angels, chakras, spiritual living, and more.
Filtering by Category: "God"
This town is very much steeped in the Mary Magdalene traditions, with sea shells (one of her symbols) on buildings and embedded in the street.
The church has interesting carvings above the imposing doors and even small rats carved into the foot of one column!
Inside, the inner portal to the main body of the church has an intricate carving of Jesus along with the astrological symbols. Unexpected and fabulous! Who would have thought Jesus would share space with a Capricorn?
There is a chapel to Mary Magdalene across from the crypt. She is holding the alabaster jar against her abdomen.
|Mary Magdalene, Vezelay|
Imbedded in the pedestal is a piece of her thigh bone.
|Mary Magdalene reliquary, Vezelay|
In the crypt is a beautiful reliquary containing a larger piece of her thigh bone. Don't you think the reliquary looks Egyptian?
|Mary Magdalene reliquary, Vezelay|
|The Crypt, Vezelay|
There are beautiful statues of saints throughout the church, as well as some painted saints on the columns. In addition to the Mary relics, one of the most fascinating things was something that wasn't on display. It is the "host holder" that holds the sacred communion host for adoration. It caught my eye on a sign in the church. I think my jaw dropped open when I saw it.
The holy Catholic sacrament is displayed in an EGYPTIAN ANKH! LOVE IT! In many of the shops in town, there are references to the Church, Egypt, Freemasons, and paganism. What a unique and mysterious combination! I love Vezelay!
After brief visit, we left and made our way west to Chartres...
|Montsegur from parking lot|
|Montsegur from monument|
Most of the group took on the challenge of hiking to the top. It is a very steep climb through a small forest which then opened to a rocky path to the summit. We stopped first at monument to the Cathars who were murdered at the base.
|Cathar Monument, Montsegur|
Half way there...
|Half way there|
The fortress at the top of the mountain is not the Cathar stronghold. It is a fortress build after the Cathars were driven out. The king must of thought it was a great place to set up shop after the Cathars held out for so long.
|fortress at Montsegur|
The original building was made from stone and wood. The outline of some of the small rooms the Cathars used can be seen below.
|Cathar rooms at Montsegur|
I got a strong sense of peace here and had visions of laughing children running through these rooms while adults worked and taught. The view was spectacular. Except for a few cow bells in the distance, we experienced a silence that was blessed and magical. Besides a sense of accomplishment from making it up and down the mountain without dying, I felt overwhelmed by the love and peace of this place. It is so interesting how many of the sites we visited had such atrocities committed in their midst, yet the energy is peaceful and loving. It is truly a testament to how love conquers all and the way in which these beautiful Cathar people lived.
I left southern France the next day and drove up north to visit Chartres and Paris. First stop on the way, Vezelay!
As if Black Madonnas weren't enough to keep me busy, I was introduced to the world of encoded stained glass windows. I saw some of the most amazing windows in a little town called Alet-les-Bains. The windows of this small church have Stars of David build into the supports for the windows and colorful, intricate glass within the frame. Each tells a story, of course, but many were hard to see because of the height of the windows. I was instantly obsessed with the symbolism in these windows and will have to add discovering their secrets to my list of things to do. But I think, perhaps, the Madonnas and the windows have some shared secrets that are waiting to be discovered...
|Black Madonna, Alet-les-Bains|
|Black Madonna, Notre-Dame-de-Marceille|
|view from Arques Castle|
Next stop was the Gorge of Galamus, a magnificent gorge near Bugarach mountain. Built into the side of the steep rock walls is a hermitage, which houses a grotto dedicated to Mary Magdalene.
|hermitage in Gorge of Galamus|
The hike into the gorge was not terribly difficult, but the rocks on the path were slippery due to the thousands of shoes that have polished them to a shine. With a small river bubbling in the background, I made my way to the entrance of the hermitage. It was pleasantly cool inside and above, someone rang a bell, which at one time, probably called people to prayer. Today, it beckoned me in further into the sacred space, which opened into a surprisingly large grotto. It was breathtaking, with the high ceilings and soft candlelight. After the requisite picture taking, I settled into a natural stone seat in the back of the grotto. Mary Magdalene is said to have taught the Way of Love here, and from the energy that is imbued in this space, I truly believe that.
|Mary Magdalene Grotto|
There is a palpable softness and feeling of love that emanates from the stone. I had a powerful, personal experience here, which I am not ready to share, but it has left me changed. This is a place of heaven on Earth with all of its human-ness and divinity expressed together.
And for all you orb lovers, look closely at the last picture. There are a few that joined us in the grotto.
Alas, tomorrow there will be no chateaux. But the mysteries keep coming!
|Weaver's Cross, front|
Where it gets really interesting is when you view the back of it. The back tells the heretical side of the story. Mary Magdalene, holding a baby (who is now decapitated) is crowned Queen of Heaven by the angels while God looks on. On her left is Archangel Michael, protector of the Divine Feminine, and the other is unidentified, but has pen and book in hand, ready to tell her story.
|Weaver's Cross, back|
Nearby, on some small mountian peaks, sits the site of Lastours. It is the site of three separate Cathar chateaux and a fourth castle built as a prize to the victors after the Cathar chateauxs were conquered.
The view was breathtaking and the hike up to one of the towers was worth the effort on that particularly warm day. Most of the group chose to hike to Cabaret, the chateau originally owned by Etiennette du Pennautier, patroness of the troubadours and defender of the Cathars.
There is one remaining tower that you can climb up from which to enjoy the spectacular vistas. Many of us spent about an hour up there, singing and dancing, a fitting tribute to the woman who celebrated the arts, music and courtly love!
|Me in the Cabaret Tower|
The streets were quiet as we approached the infamous church, which holds most of the town's secrets. Dedicated to Mary Magdalene, this place of worship has a gorgeous statue of Mary Magdalene above the door with an interesting inscription. At first, it seems as though it proclaims the place as "terribilis," but translated properly in this context, it means 'awesome'. Awesome it is, indeed!
|Mary Magdalene at Rennes-le-Chateau|
As I entered the church, Rex Mundi was waiting to greet me. One would not expect to find a devil at the entrance to a church. Rex Mundi means 'king of the world,' and to me, represents the ego and our attachment to earthly things that block us from our true path.
|Angels triumph over Rex Mundi|
|altar with Mary Magdalene relief|
|altar pillar - no, it isn't upside down. Sauniere had 'Mission 1891' carved upside down. The hole is at the top.|
Rennes-le-Chateau brought up mixed emotions in me. The church itself was so multi-layered in terms of energy and emotions. A LOT has happened there, and for me that day, it was quite jumbled when picking up on energies of the past and present. There is a definite air of mystery around the church and grounds, much more than you can see. I came away quite melacholy because I was on energy overload and processing quite a bit. I would love to go back after reading and learning more about the history and symbolism so I could focus on a specific area of the church or gardens. You could spend years here and not uncover or decipher the town's secrets. The next place we visited was quite the opposite of Rennes-le-Chateau...
We woke up to fresh croissants, gluten-free bread, meats, eggs, and fruit. Ah, to be this spoiled every day... The first stop for the day was the walled city of Carcassonne. You may have seen it in Kevin Costner's Robin Hood movie.
Carcassonne was energetically very interesting. When I first walk through the gates and along the city wall, I felt nauseous. It shifted energetically as we walked into the city to the cathedral. As you walk into the church, you are greeted with this sign:
I love the "Roman Catholic Cult" part! Ha! The church itself is energetically interesting. There were both "good" and "bad" pockets of energy throughout the church. One area in particular affected me tremendously. It was a small chapel with a lovely statue of St. Anne teaching Mary, and there is a red book under her foot.
On the floor in front of her was the burial site of a cardinal who was sympathetic to the plight of the Cathars. I had a very strong emotional reaction when I approached the chapel and had a vision of a young woman sprawled out over the tomb, wailing with grief. I was overcome with the desire to shoo people off his grave marker on the floor. The woman's relationship with this man is unknown, but she was definitely distraught over his passing. I didn't take any pictures of the marker because it felt disrespectful and wrong to do so. She wanted his resting place to remain sacred, I think.
There was also excellent shopping in Carcassonne, as well as delicious duck cassoulet for lunch. After lunch, we headed to Minerve, the site of one of the Cathar massacres in 1210 during the Albegensian Crusades. More about Minerve tomorrow...
The Lord's Prayer
The Aramaic Prayer of Jesus is the original Lord's Prayer as given by Jesus in the Aramaic language (Original tansliteration from the Syriac-Aramaic version of the Peshltta by Neil Douglas-Klotz)
O Birther! Father-Mother of the Cosmos, you create all that moves in light,
Focus your light within us---make it useful as the rays of a beacon show the way.
Create your reign of unity now---through our fiery hearts and willing hands.
Your one desire then acts with ours, as in all light, so in all forms.
Grant what we need each day in bread and insight.
Loose the cords of mistakes binding us, as we release the strands we hold of others' guilt.
Don't let surface things delude us.
But free us from what holds us back.
From you is born all ruling will, the power and the life to do, the song that beautifies all,
from age to age it renews.
And so it is!
This mission statement is a "living document." It can grow and change as you do, being modified to reflect your divine journey. We aren't striving for one perfect statement. Throughout your life, your priorities will shift, circumstances will change. You are growing and learning. Your mission statement should reflect that.
I used an online mission statement builder to begin mine. My statement is in its infancy, but it is a great starting point for me. Here is the first draft of my statement:
I am at my best when I am focused on my passions.
I will try to prevent times when I feel I am going nowhere and not making a difference..
I will enjoy my work by finding employment where I can help people empower themselves and uncover their gifts.
I will find enjoyment in my personal life through reading, learning, and travel.
I will find opportunities to use my natural talents and gifts such as listening, learning, planning, teaching, writing, being a friend.
I can do anything I set my mind to. I will travel the world teaching people to harness their divine gifts to the benefit of themselves and others.
My life's journey is one of ups and downs, but always moving in the direction of divine service and community. I empower people to be their true selves, creating a sense of global community and peace.
I will be a person who has created an environment in which people feel they can be themselves, which, in turn, empowers them to create a life of service and community where love is the binding force.
My most important future contribution to others will be that I have given people the tools to empower themselves.
I will stop procrastinating and start working on:
releasing my perfectionism
I will strive to incorporate the following attributes into my life:
I will constantly renew myself by focusing on the four dimensions of my life:
exercise and eating a good diet of life-giving foods
constant communication with Spirit and divine service always
always learning with an open mind
focus on joy and creating a life of bliss
If you would like to create your own statement using this tool, go to:
Keep your mission statement where you can read it. Post it on your mirror, on the refrigerator, and next to your computer. Let it remind you of who you are and where you are going. Enjoy!
Where the Hell is Matt? 2008
in a baby's smile
in a cat's purr
in a friend's tear
in a tree's shadow
in a flower's fragrance
in a strawberry's sweetness
in a dog's sleepy yawn
in the darkest night
in the brightest day
in a gorgeous sunset
in a lover's touch
in each breath you take
in a broken heart
in a open mind
Where do you find God?
A Dog's Purpose? (from a 6-year-old)
Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.
I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.
As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.
The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker 's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.
The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker's Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives.?
Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ''I know why.''
Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation. It has changed the way I try and live.
He said, ''People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life --- like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?''
The six-year-old continued, ''Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long.'' Remember….
Remember, if a dog was the teacher you would learn things like:
When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.
Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.
Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure Ecstasy.
Stretch before rising.
Run, romp, and play daily.
Thrive on attention and let people touch you.
Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.
On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.
On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.
When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.
Never pretend to be something you're not.
If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.
When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by, and nuzzle them gently.
ENJOY EVERY MOMENT OF EVERY DAY!
Releasing your worries and concerns to God and the angels frees up our energy to focus on higher vibration things as well as allowing us to more clearly hear guidance from God and the angels. When we aren't worrying about HOW we are going to do something, we are open to the miracles and guidance that comes quickly and naturally. I have noticed that when I become so exasperated with a situation that I literally throw my hands up and say, "I give up! I can't take it anymore!", that answers, assistance, and miracle come at light speed. I released the "how" to Spirit. We don't need to get to that point to "Let Go and Let God." Simply trusting that everything is taken care of is enough. Hold on to the outcome, but disengage from the process. Allow God to choose the how. Then, be open and ready to take action on the guidance that will be coming your way. I would bet the "how" is much more fabulous and incredible than you could ever dream up for yourself.
I find that during the readings, there is also guidance for me in the messages I am receiving for the client. I am taking that to heart today and letting go of the "how". I am excited to discover what miracles are headed my way! It also frees up a lot of my energy so I can put it to better use doing laundry, cleaning toilets, feeding dogs, doing dishes...
Pay attention to your conversations. "I wish, I think, I like, I hate, I can, I can't" all begin powerful suggestions. Our words not only affect us, they affect others as well. Are you hypnotizing others around you? "You are, You can't, You had better..." More suggestions. What reality are you creating right now, for yourself and others? I suggest you pay attention to your suggestions. Hypnotize yourself into your ultimate reality. My next suggestion is "I am happy, healthy, and content." That's a suggestion I am glad to accept.
For many of us, we use our spiritual third eye to "see" these divine messages. The third eye is located between your eyebrows in the center of your forehead. It is constantly watching and recording our life's adventures, as well as transmitting messages from our heavenly home. With our third eye, we can receive messages through dreams. During dreamtime, it is easy for Spirit to communicate with us because our ego is asleep, and our higher self has free reign over our experiences. When we receive guidance from our angels and guides through a dream, we don't argue with whether the experience was "real" or not. We can go with the flow and enjoy the experience, learning what we need to learn peacefully and without fear. Most people would freeze in terror if an angel appeared before them with a telegram from God. But when you are asleep, it can easily be written off as a dream, but with our higher self still benefitting from the experience.
We can also receive guidance with our physical eyes. I tend to see white feathers or colored sparkles when my angels are around me. It is their way of saying "Hi." I have also had books jump out of bookshelves at me that have messages that I need to read. Repeating numbers are another way my angels and guides get my attention and get a message to me. The visual guidance you receive may not be the same as other people's. Spirit knows who you are and what you are ready to receive. Think of it as having special, tailor-made guidance...just for you!
Remember to ASK for help, ASK for guidance, ASK for signs. Our angels and guides, who are messengers of God, cannot help unless we ask, which gives them permission. Once you have requested help, sit back and be open to the guidance that comes your way. Be careful not to expect it to come in a certain form or at a certain time. Trust that it will come at just the right time in just the right way. Once we let go of the expectations, we can enjoy the experience.
So, yes, you ARE psychic. You ARE clairvoyant. Enjoy your dreams and your visual messages from Spirit. It is nice to know that we are still connected to home and are not cut off when we drop into these human bodies. Ask and you shall receive, perhaps in the form of sparkling lights and white feathers or a fabulous technicolor dream starring angels, guides, and perhaps your deceased Aunt Edna.