The Sacred Marriage: the New Story for our Time (28-30 August 2015)

This was a chance to share a wonderful weekend retreat with Anne Baring on the Sacred Marriage:
The image of the sacred marriage is at least 4,000 years old. We first hear of it in Bronze Age Egypt and Sumer, where it celebrated with poetry and ritual the sexual union of goddess and god that was believed to assist the regeneration of the Earth in spring. We can see it magnificently portrayed in the fifteenth century paintings of Renaissance Italy where Christ and his Mother, Mary, sit side by side with the sun and moon beneath their feet. And we can remember it from our childhood in unforgettable fairy tales such as the story of the Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella. How can this ancient image speak to us today in this time of crisis and profound transformation?
The sacred marriage of sun and moon, god and goddess, king and queen, prince and princess is woven into the rich tapestry of hidden or lost mystical traditions: Alchemy, Gnosticism and Kabbalah. Our most urgent need today is to reconnect mind and soul — the two aspects of our nature which have become separated from each other, yet which belong together as bridegroom and bride. Secondly, it is to reconnect Nature and Spirit, recognising that God is not Other, but All that is. Thirdly, it is to reconnect our consciousness with the divine ground.
The weekend explored the beliefs and illusions which have separated these aspects of our lives yet whose relationship with each other, in the Chinese image of Yin and Yang, is both essential and profound. We saw how they can be brought together through a deeper understanding of the specific qualities of the feminine and masculine archetypes and of our relationship with both Nature and the Cosmos. The new geometry of unified physics reveals how everything is connected from the infinitesimal particles of matter to the great galaxies of space.
The sacred marriage of the masculine and feminine aspects of our nature, and of our consciousness with the ever-present divine ground is the pre-requisite for giving birth to the divine child within us and, in the world, to a civilisation free of the mistakes of our past which have separated God from our world and divided man from woman, religion from religion, nation from nation. The sacred marriage, understood and lived as a new story for our time, could help us to become truly human: wise, compassionate and ethical in all our relationships with the planet and with each other.
There was also a harp recital given by Paula Tait on the evening of Saturday 29th August.

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