Who is at the Center of the Underworld: The True Source of the Soul of America
The Original “Me Too” Lady
In these blog entries, I try to work imaginally, mythically, feelingly – rather than literally and historically. And, I try to avoid speaking in opinions, relying on an inner consistency of image-patterning as the guide. Language gets in the way, terribly, particularly given that the English language favors mind-oriented, rational–oriented ways of taking things literally, and we tend to be unfamiliar with the manner images form the psyche, and thus the way we perceive the world, and we remain unconscious of there being anything governing what we perceive and think other than perhaps social factors.
Given the situation, and still trying to speak of soul and Earth and how we live, I thank those who are staying with this work, immensely. And, even more, thank you who have commented, and are going through what is essentially a transformation process.
The more difficult part of the blogs concerns reading as inner listening. Listening from the place of the heart, listening to body/heart resonances. Facts and history and thinking are more like the materials for the making of something imaginal. If you pay attention only to the materials, you will miss the picture-making.
The last blog made a long sweep – from High Tor, NY, through 9/11, and down to the Trinity site of the first atomic bomb, and the resonance of the original loss of the heart of America through the literal and brutal ritual of tearing the heart from the breast of captured native people by the Aztecs and offering their hearts to the Sun, expecting a material return. The Aztec people were invaded by the Spaniards who slaughtered them, leading to this degradation of the imaginal heart… of the Americas. It is as if the Aztec people became infected with the impulse of greed.
Return in imagination to our earlier story of the Spanish Conquistadors. Remember that after their devastation of the Original People, they, under the leadership of Cortez, returned to Spain. This was around 1520. Some ten years later, around 1531, he was going to lead another expedition to Mexico, and surely enacting another phase of genocide, reaching into America. In 1531, however, in Tepayacac, Mexico, Lady Guadalupe appeared. Cortez did not return to Mexico for another round of killing the Aztecs and the Original people of America.
This moment marks the seeding of the soul of the Americas. Lady Guadalupe tells the Aztec people to go back to their roots and to their origin, the Great Mother Coatlique. Mother Earth. Coatlique, a virgin mother, now represented as Lady Guadalupe, originates the soul of the Americas. At this time, 1531, she appears in a form coherent with Christianity that now dominated, and in a form needed for the future. Our destiny in America requires coming to meet and see and experience the darkness of greed, originating at a different level of the Underworld than Coatlique. That different level than Coatlique arises here in America at the place of High Tor in New York, the region of tears and grieving. Later we will take up the theme of grieving, yet again, with the Iroquois of the far northeast. Their mythic story centers in the redemption of grieving, that is, honoring grieving —- and their way of life, of community, which explicitly formed the background of the Constitution of the United States. Thus, the soul of America —- the creating, that in-forms what we perceive as America, concerns the deep feminine presence of the Earth spirit, encountered through grieving.
The Catholic hierarchy has always been good at taking over the gods and goddesses of a land, covering them over with a ‘Christian look’, to convert the Original people to Catholicism. This too happened with Lady Guadalupe. Nine million people converted to Christianity at the time of the appearance of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
This minimal work with Coatlique–Our Lady of Guadalupe is an important image. We do not want to throw out, yet again, Earth-spirit, which happens if we are unaware of the continuity between Coatlique and Lady Guadalupe, but we also do not want to return to the old by disregarding Lady Guadalupe and seeing the ‘old ways’ — but rather, to see the old in new ways.
The Original people would seem to accept the Christian stories and figures, but most often would retain, in secret, their own spirituality. There was enough in common with the Earth people and the images of Christianity that they could easily seem to be Christian while retaining their ways.
Try, in a relaxed manner, to see this image of Lady Guadalupe as Earth-oriented rather than Sky oriented, even though her cloak bears the images of the constellations.Another Codex which carefully describes the event is quite explicit in saying she emerges from the earth. Her image, now in the Cathedral in Mexico City — is also actually a codex — a code to be read. I may work with this code in several blog entries; for now, feel the way she emerges from Earth rather than being ‘plopped down’ from heaven. (To read this quite astounding account of Coatlique and Lady Guadalupe, see: The Aztec Virgin: The Secret Mystical Tradition of Our Lady of Guadalupe by John Mini.)
There is a reason for my speaking of “Our Lady of Guadalupe” as “Lady Guadalupe”. The former carries both the sense of possession — as if she is ‘ours’; the second, more significant reason concerns staying close to Earth-spirituality and being clear about the difference between ‘Earth-spirituality’ and ‘Sky-spirituality’. We, even if we do not practice any particular spirituality are within the prevailing ‘Sky-spirituality”. That is, we think of all things spiritual as ‘up-there’ somewhere. “Up-There” is certainly a metaphor, not to be taken literally, but, it is a metaphor of ‘not-being-here”. My use of the name “Lady Guadalupe” keeps our imagination close to the Mother of Earth-Spirituality.
Coatlique, also, at this site in Mexico, she who is also named Tonantzin, given in this time, 1531, as Lady Guadalupe, is the Black Madonna of the Americas. She points the way to the origin of the American Earth-Cosmos, to Earth reverence. And she displays the manner, the way, the only way of coming to the core of the soul of America – by falling into her arms; that is, the only way to her is through grief.
Grief is not the result of experiencing the death of someone near – that is mourning. Grief comes when ego loosens and/or dissolves, for then we are in the midst of the truth of life as joyous/sorrowful, simultaneously. It is the way of being humus-beings, that is …of earth.