30 March 2018

Long-maligned Mary Magdalene now seen as stalwart disciple

By Alon Bernstein and Isaac Scharf, Associated Press
MAGDALA, Israel — Mar 30, 2018, 9:17 AM ET

In this Tuesday, March 27, 2018 photo, a sculpture of Mary Magdalene and Jesus on display at the Magdala center, on the Sea of Galilee in Migdal. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

If there's a feminist figure from the Bible for the #MeToo era, it could very well be Mary Magdalene.

The major character in the life of Jesus was long maligned in the West and portrayed as a reformed former prostitute. But scholars have adopted a different approach more recently, viewing her as a strong, independent woman who supported Jesus financially and spiritually. [Read more...]

30 March 2012

14 Steps to Awaken the Sacred Feminine

This book offers 14 lessons to help understand the wisdom offered by Mary Magdalene’s story and mythos. Among the lessons are prophecies of the bride, why we need the bride, Magdalene’s archetypal pattern of descent, and how modern women carry the Grail. Well-suited for the individual reader as well as a group, each lesson includes an introduction, guided meditation, questions for journaling, and an essay by Margaret Starbird as well as suggestions for group sharing.

Placing Mary Magdalene within the pattern of “cyclic renewal” of earth-based religions, this book offers the chance to incorporate the sacred feminine wisdom of Mary Magdalene into everyday life for Christians and spiritual feminists alike.

The image on the cover is an illustration of a woman and unicorn by Robinet Testard from the Book of Simple Medicines, ca. 1470 (National Library, St. Petersburg).

30 March 2011

Margaret Starbird and Gematria

Margaret Starbird writes to the MM-list on July 14, 2004:
[Here] is how the original Greek texts of the New Testament actually spelled Mary Magdalene's name/epithet.

In the Gospels, almost always when we find "Mary Magdalene" mentioned, she is called "Maria h Magdalhnh"--her first name and "title" together: (Matt 27:56; 27:61; 28:1; Mark 15:40; 15:47; 16:1; (16:9 say 'th' Magdalhnh because of the case change). Luke 8:1 says "Maria h ....(who is called)...Magdalhnh" and Luke 24:10 says "h Magdalhnh Maria." John 19:25; 20:1 and 20:18 all say "Maria h Magdalhnh." From these Gospel texts, it is clear that this woman was called "Mary the Magdalene"-- by everyone. It is her name/title. It is clear that this whole epithet "h Magdalhnh" was used intentionally in connection with Magdalene, giving her title the sum of "153."

Magdalene's Lost Legacy by Margaret Starbird Since the practice of gematria relies on the actual spelling of the phrase (which results in a specific sum), and since this practice is in place throughout the New Testament (as discussed in my book, Magdalene's Lost Legacy [Required reading in our Order of Mary Magdala's Second Degree] and in John Michell's Dimensions of Paradise and numerous other sources) it is a rational assumption that the title "h Magdalhnh" was NOT a "happy accident" but was intentional. They could have called her anything they wanted to, given her any "spin" they wanted, and they CHOSE (IMO) to identify her with the "153" identified with the Vesica Piscis, their symbol for the "creative matrix," the "womb" and the "Bridal Chamber."

The number "153" is repeated in John's Gospel, chapter 21 when the disciples counted the fish they caught. It is a metaphor for the "Church" --"the Bride" (people!!) of the Way. The earliest Christians saw Mary Magdalene as the "prototype" of the faithful community, the "Bride" in her devotion and faithfulness to Christ, so her "153" is a metaphor for the "church of the fishes."

13 September 2009

Ancient synagogue found in Israel

Kevin Flower has this story at
. . . The synagogue was discovered in area called Migdal, historically an important settlement along the Sea of Galilee, which researchers say was mentioned in ancient Jewish texts as playing a prominent role during what is known as the Great Revolt, when Jews attempted to rebel against Roman rule. Migdal also figures in early Christian writings as the place where Mary Magdalene accompanied Jesus and the Apostles.

11 September 2009

Legend of Mary Magdalene

Screen capture. Hugh Montgomery, The God-Kings of Europe. Image courtesy of Google Books.

Hugh Montgomery cites this story in his God-Kings of Europe (2006:124) and also God-Kings of Outremer (2008:Appendix C).
"Now it came to pass in those days that a Priestess of the Goddess from the village of Bethany of the Tribe of Benjamin and a keeper of the Sacred Doves was affianced to a man called Jeshua for she had served her six years. Now Jeshua was of the House of David the King and they were married.

And Jeshua rebelled against the oppressors against Rome and was defeated, but many Romans were devotees of the Mother and were unwilling to kill her priestess who was with child. So Miriam took ship and was secretly smuggled into Gaul where she was delivered and there she abode many years. Now she bore a daughter who was exceedingly fair and the King of that place looked upon her and demanded that she be his wife but she was promised to the Goddess. But the King would not have it so and took her and made her his wife and she bore him a son and a daughter.

But the Goddess was exceeding wrath for his rape of her daughter and cursed him saying, 'Thy seed shall be estranged from me and thine inheritance taken from thee. Thy seed shall end by the piercing of an eye and so shall thine inheritance cease.

Yet for the sake of my priestess whom thou ravished shall I forgive thee and thy seed if they fulfil those labours which I shall give to them.

They must fight and capture that which was lost to the oppressors of thy wife though they shall not hold it for they shall suffer betrayal (as thou betrayed me). Unless one of thy seed shall end the House of their betrayers by piercing the eye of its Liege. To this family shall I award greatness if they return to me and from this time to that shall be four and one hundred generations.'"

31 August 2009

Magdalene Murals in the Chapel at St. Baume

Mary Magdalene preaching (late 1940s). Montenard. Chapel, St. Baume. Image courtesy of

Mary Magdalene with open arms (late 1940s). Montenard. Chapel, St. Baume. Image courtesy of

Mary Magdalene at the Grotto (late 1940s). Montenard. Chapel, St. Baume. Image courtesy of

Mary Magdalene raised by angels (late 1940s). Montenard. Chapel, St. Baume. Image courtesy of