Sunday, March 4, 2018

Amulets of Our Lady of Lourdes

The Amulets of Mary is a healing and blessing oracle based on the Mysteries of Mary tarot deck iconography as well as The Blessing Way, also known as Benedicaria.  They marry the ancient craft of charm casting with the use of holy cards, tarot cards, candle ritual and novena prayers. 

The Amulets of Mary Oracle is a two-fold oracle, blessing and healing set incorporating various ancient traditions including the Benedicaria, the sacred path of the pilgrim and priestesshood in the Temple of Mary and the sanctification of the ordinary through the blessing way. The Amulets of Mary Oracle and the Mysteries of Mary Tarot Deck are both a culmination of my own conscious spiritual journey of the past 25 years. It incorporates the practise of Sacred Altarmaking, the devotion of the pilgrim to sacred places, the use of holy waters and relics, the creation of sacred oils and elixers and my work as Diksha giver (Blessing giver) in Sakta Tantra tradition. The Amulets can be used with and alongside the Mysteries of Mary Tarot cards. You can read more about the Blessing Way and the Amulets of Mary on my blog here :

One of the casting sheets of the Amulets of Mary Sets

The past seven years I have offered an Art Novena to Our Lady of Lourdes on my blog Cloister of the Heart.  

Amulets of the Lady of Lourdes set

This year the theme was the feminine and sacred nature of fairy tales and in particular the correspondences between the fairy tale and the story of Bernadette Soubirous and the radiant Lady of Lourdes. You can find the nine days of the Art Novena of Our Lady of Lourdes 2018 here.

Fairytales are a font of wisdom, a secret book of Wisdom and Divine Feminine tales.  Fairy tales have certain basic structures, and in a nut shell one can describe them as stories in which the hero is always a woman guided by the supernatural, surrounded by magic and miracles and a wondrous healing tale for all!     The story of the Bright Lady in  shining white Light that appeared to the starving little girl of Massabielles, 
 has all the elements of a fairy tale.  At Lourdes you step into the Otherworld; into a Land of Enchantment where miracles are possible.Fairy tales can be regarded as mythical religious stories with the focus and emphasis on the divine feminine as a balancing contrast to the patriarchal Roman and Greek myths which we have come to know.  In other words, a thealogy (female deity) in contrast to an exclusive theology (male deity). In this year's Art Novena to Our Lady of Lourdes  I explored the feminine wisdom and guidance of fairytales and specifically as it pertains to the miraculous story of Our Lady of Lourdes.

So it was only fitting that I created a special Amulets of Mary Blessing Oracle Set based on the fairytale and miracle of Bernadette and Our Lady of Lourdes.  I have visited Lourdes annually for the past five years and have brought back holy medals, relics and some of the healing spring water. These limited sets contain amulets specifically pertaining to the story of Bernadette and the Grotto of Massabielles outside Lourdes, as told in the Art Novenas to Our Lady of Lourdes.  Some of these sets will include items that I collected during my Lourdes pilgrimages, hand made resin and clay holy medals, charms, holy cards, a miniature Lady of Lourdes resin statue, a tiny vial of the healing waters of the Lourdes spring, as well a set of 46 charms of the Amulets of Mary set and a beautiful Our Lady of Lourdes casting linen cloth(All sprinkled with waters from the Lourdes spring and touched to the relic of the Chemise of Our Lady.)

Mother Goose

 The first two amulets in the special Lady of Lourdes set is the Flying Goose and Mother Goose on her broomstick.

Hannah or Anna as the Great Mother Goddess
also known as Mother Goose and her sacred goose
VI of Roses in Mysteries of Mary Tarot Deck
We are all familiar with Mother Goose and her nursery rhymes and fairytales. What better place to hide the Divine Mother Goddess in the guise of an old crone with a goose for a vehicle? The goose has many mythical connections in both Eastern and Western mythology. In Egyptian lore the sky was associated with the Mother Goddess. The goose is one of the most sacred animals in the ancient stories of goddess, along with the swan. Just like Mother Goose, the Greek goddess Aphrodite  rode through the air on the back of a goose. 

There are also artwork depicting Aphrodite with geese at her feet. In the Mysteries of Mary Tarot Deck, I include the hidden code and meaning in fairy tales and specifically Mother Goose.  Mother Goose is present in the card Hannah's Song.  Here is an extract from Mysteries of Mary tarot deck :

We also know the fairy tale of the goose that lays the golden egg. The egg has always carried the meaning of life and rebirth in ancient traditions. It also symbolises new life and transformation.  The shape of the egg also has connotations as it is similar to the vesica pisces. Goose is a partial anagram of goddess and Mother Goose hides the word mother goddess The mother aspect of the goddess is still present today in Mother Mary. Mother Goose is seen as the magical author of all the fairy tales, reminiscent of our understanding of the Shekinah or Sophia.

The heroine or young girl in the fairy tale

Iconography and amulets of the story of Cinderella is included in the Lourdes story as it corresponds with the story of Bernadette.  In many a fairy tale the protagonist is a young girl. Think of Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Rumpelstilskin and Snow White.  Sometimes she is a princess and at other times she is a poor servant girl.  But the focus in the fairy tale is always on the young girl, the mother and step mother and the fairy godmother or the thirteenth fairy or some interaction with a supernatural Blessing Lady.

The miraculous story of Lourdes is as much about Bernadette Soubirous as it is about the Lady and the gift of the healing waters. The young Bernadette is the daughter of a poor family. 

The Holy Servant and Handmaiden shrine from the
Mysteries of Mary tarot deck
VIII of Roses (pentacles)
The fairy tale of Cinderella

The servant girl

The young girl Bernadette grew up poor and almost destitute.  She lived in an old broken down room of what used to be a prison, in squalor. She had to scavenge for food on the rubbish heap of the village.  In ordinary time Bernadette was poor, she had no status and she was a girl in the ashes, scavenging to help keep her family alive and warm. In the Mysteries of Mary it is explained that Holy servant and handmaiden are ancient titles for holy ones or Light Bringers.  In the esoteric Christian Bride chamber mysteries, the holy servant is the bride of the Christ.  

As in the Handless Maiden, Bernadette is the daughter of a miller

The Miller's daughter

The sacred tasks of the heroine

Today Bernadette and her story is famous and she is regaled for her vision, her faith, her commitment and the wondrous gifts that she brought back to our world from her meetings with Mary of Lourdes. But this was not the case in her lifetime. She was the only one who saw the visions of the Radiant Lady. No-one else believed her. She was ridiculed and thought to be insane. Her mother forbade her to go back to the grotto after being told about the visions. But Bernadette persisted. and she obeyed the Radiant Lady and took her messages back to the village and the local priest. She was taken in for psychiatric evaluation; she was arrested by the police and she was vilified by the villagers. In many fairy tales and myths as well, the young heroine has to overcome certain tasks until the ultimate challenge has been completed. The ultimate challenge for Bernadette was when Magnificent Mary of Lourdes told her to dig for water in a bone dry patch of land where there had never been water before. And Bernadette started to dig with her hands and nothing appeared.  The villagers

shook their heads at her and walked away. But she persisted and kept on digging away with her hands in the dirt. As in fairy tales Bernadette surrendered her fear, her free will and herself to the visions and the presence of the supernatural. As the innocent heroine of the story she acted in hope and belief in the impossible.

The Radiant Lady in White - fairy godmother, The magical element of fire and light, The miracles, The gifts of the sleeping woman and The gifts from the Otherworld are some of the amulets that are included in this set.

Each set comes with an explanatory sheet and all information regarding the Lady of Lourdes fairytale correspondences and the meaning and interpretation of the amulets.


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