We Carry the Grail

From 14 Steps to Awaken the Sacred Feminine

By Joan Norton and Margaret Starbird

Lesson 14 — We Carry the Grail, Hopeful Cup of Life

Pages 82-85

A book for all of us

Margaret Starbird — The Holy Grail

What is the Holy Grail? Although there is no absolute definition of the Grail, many medieval legends tell us that it is the cup or chalice that once contained the precious blood of Jesus. Intrepid knights, clad in shining armor and mounted on strong steeds, thundered through the forests of Europe seeking the lost Grail, performing daring deeds along the way. They were looking for an artifact, the cup from which Jesus drank at the Last Supper, the cup in which he instituted the Holy Eucharist. “This is the cup of my blood.”

European legends posit a real artifact, a drinking cup, as the object of later searches because it was sadly, even tragically, lost. One poignant refrain claims that the Grail was lost because its guardians were found to be unworthy. The wasteland ensues from its loss. In one legend, the Fisher King, ruler of the stricken domain, is himself suffering from an incurable thigh wound that can only be healed when the Grail is found. How pathetic is his plight! Meanwhile, his realm falls into ruin; rain fails, plants shrivel, people starve. What is the true nature of this loss?

In the prelude to Chrétien de Troyes’ twelfth-century poem about the Count of the Grail, there is a story of a domain where nine lovely maidens guarded the sacred wells, each equipped with a golden cup in which they offered water to passersby. But the lustful king raped one of the maidens and then, following his dissolute example, the other maidens of the realm were similarly defiled and the kingdom became desolated.

It seems that the Grail is very connected to the honoring of the feminine principle embodied in women. When women are defamed and defiled, the domain becomes a wasteland. This principle is reflected in societies all across the planet. The masculine principle, when it is not properly in partnership with its feminine counterpart, becomes hedonistic and violent. Who has not mourned the loss of the Grail—a powerful symbol of our connection to the Divine Feminine?

In Christianity, the lost Grail is embodied in Mary Magdalene, the sacred vessel who, as the mother of Jesus’ child, “once contained the blood of Christ.” The Grail is not an artifact: the woman is herself the sacred chalice, tragically lost. Only when we embrace Her can we heal the wasteland.

Only when we embrace Her can we heal the wasteland.

Healing from within

Reflections and Sharing

When we each hold our inner feminine nature as sacred, in divine partnership with the sacred masculine, we will be carrying the Grail in our own lives. From this pattern of inherent Wholeness in Christianity, we will be able to heal the wasteland and perhaps our Earth will come alive again.

          As Margaret has explained, the Holy Grail vessel is a metaphor for the womb of Mary Magdalene carrying the royal bloodline child of Jesus. As vessel containing the blood of new life, Mary Magdalene becomes an image and a symbol of the Sacred Feminine half of God. She becomes the Christian story’s female principle, its Sacred Complement in divine partnership. She becomes the Goddess in the Gospels, as Margaret says. Renewal takes place through her.

          As we have seen, there are other indications that Mary Magdalene was understood in her time as the embodiment of the Goddess: she was assigned the title of the Magdalene and given a sacred number code in writings about her, both of which underscored her special status in the eyes of her beholders. In the Middle Ages, a legend developed describing her ascension body and soul accompanied by angels into heaven.

          She was Christianity’s Holy Grail vessel, a symbol for the eternal truth and ageless wisdom of the feminine God. In our time now, we know that only a purposeful relationship to the living energies of the Divine Feminine can heal the world, in sacred partnership to the Divine Masculine. The Grail legends call this “healing the wasteland” by finding and holding the cup of life.

          Mary Magdalene, Bride and Beloved, we love and acknowledge you as the Holy Grail, Divine Feminine, vessel of change for a better world.

A beautiful heart – the art of birthing with the heart

Cup of Abundance

Breathe in very slowly…

Feel the strong connection you’ve made with the energies of the earth…

As human beings, we are the Holy Grail, the feminine and the masculine united…

We have a heart, a vessel with the mysterious capacity to love…

It is from us that the world learns to nurture…

Breathe deeply now…breathe down into your feet…they rest upon Mother Earth, whose nurturing capacity we depend on…

Breathe…feel Mother’s Earth’s continual receptivity to us and her devotion to us…she continues to nurture us in abundance…

Her great and mysterious flow of physical well-being is inside us as well…

The feminine energy of abundance is our own Holy Grail-self…

Breathe…feel your body resting so safely…

We are vessel for physical life…yes, sometimes it is an idea…and sometimes it is the mystery of creative energy…

Feel your own receptive energy to the new life in yourself…

We are capable of showering it with love until the right time for its birth…the right time for others to know about it…

Breathe deeply again…

We are so capable of devotion to what we love…breathe…

What is it right now that we are in love with?

What is it right now that wants our creative energy and our nurture?

Remain quiet for a few minutes with the image of the Grail and see what is calling you.

About new desert

Nurturing the Gift of Seeking is about a spiritual "destination," a journey within, a new beginning, that eventually takes us where we are meant to arrive. Some call it Home, yet I am not sure what Home means, and where it is. Enjoy the journey, dear Ones! On this journey, what matters, first and foremost, is our seeking spirit. And the seed of perseverance--or faith, if you will. Happy journey, dear fellow Sisters and Brothers!
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