Two years ago this month, I was awakened in that precious 3-4 am “hour of god,” which I now call the “hour of the goddess.” I wasn’t concerned. I’m so accustomed to being awakened in the wee hours that I sleep with paper at hand.
In the dark, I have heard and scribbled down newsletter topics, book titles, song lyrics, intensive ideas, even entire prayers. Often I don’t understand what I’m hearing, but I write it all down anyway, because I trust the divine voice and I know clarity will eventually come. My job in the night is simply to capture what I am being told.
On February 25, 2018, I awakened hearing two words in my left ear. Just two words, but they were clear, crisp, non-negotiable: Prayer Artist.
Even as I jotted those two words on the yellow pad beside me, I sensed my life was about to change. And oh, has it ever!
My mystical life has exploded. My experience of prayer has dropped into whole new realms. My writing has changed completely. I can’t even say I “write” prayers: I’d have to say I take dictation. My radio show ended so my radical prayer podcast could be born. And my courses? They ended overnight, so I could offer prayer intensives—even though I didn’t really know what that meant.
And, now I see that even where I live must change. After 36 years in Florida, I am moving to the Hudson River Valley where I will learn to hear the divine voice in the sacred ground. Thanks to the ancient rosary, this grooming has begun. I am slowly “hearing” the divine voice rising through my feet as I walk-pray the rosary.
The arrival of the rosary came as a shock to me. And I bet it is coming as a shock to you.
Much as I love prayer in all its forms, I never thought I’d touch a rosary again. I grew up on my knees saying countless rosaries around the dining room table. When I left the Catholic church at 19, I thought I left the rosary far behind.
But then along came Mary Magdalene. (My goddess, but that woman will change your life!)
I offered two prayer intensives on Mary Magdalene last year with Meghan Don. When I asked Meghan for book recommendations for the handbook for the intensives, she gave me only one: Waking Up to the Dark by Clark Strand. I failed to see how this was about Mary Magdalene, but I trust guidance however it comes and I got the book.
As I read, I kept leaping out of my chair shouting Who Is This Guy!
Everything—I mean everything—I know is true is in this book: the divine is feminine, she speaks in the night, the earth is alive, the Black Madonna….
I was shocked.
I’ve read hundreds and hundreds of spiritual and mystical books and never have I felt that every word was speaking directly to my heart and settling as truth into my body.
Whoever Clark Strand was, I wanted to read everything he’d written and see if he’d come on my podcast. So off I went to google. There, at the top of his website was a new book written with his wife, Perdita Finn. I thought OH JOY!
It is called The Way of the Rose: The Radical Path of the Divine Feminine Hidden in the Rosary
Radical, Divine Feminine? I’m all in.
But rosary? Rosary? Oooph. Please, not that.
But how can I say yes to radical divine guidance—even something as outrageous as prayer artist—but hesitate when something comes in a package I think I don’t like?
I could practically feel Sophia—the name of the divine feminine for me—standing in front of me with her hands on her hips, eyebrow raised…waiting.
Well, I didn’t keep her waiting long. I know when I’m being guided and got the book. Within a few pages, I surprised myself completely as I fell head over heels in love with the rosary. You know why?
Because the rosary isn’t a Christian prayer!
In fact, the rosary predates all religions and the Catholic church did everything in its power to suppress it, but people wouldn’t stop praying with their beads.
The rosary is ancient goddess devotion.
Our ancestors, going back thousands of years, honored the goddess with garlands of roses, draping them over her images in the spring. And those garlands were prayers.
The rosary is a garland of prayers to the goddess.
Now as I read all this, I thought OK…OK…maybe…. But there was still a part of me holding back. Until p 202, where Clark and Perdita explain that the medal at the center of the rosary holds proof that the rosary is ancient goddess prayer.
On the front of the medal is an image of Our Lady—who I was taught is Mary, the mother of Jesus. The image first appeared to Catherine, an illiterate 24-year-old French nun in 1830. Catherine described the woman in detail and, although she told her superiors she didn’t think it was Mary, that image quickly became the symbol of Mary on countless rosaries.
But the image isn’t Mary; it’s the Goddess.
As Clark and Perdita dissect the details in depth, I stared at the medal on my Mother’s 70-year-old rosary and began to see it through different eyes. Then, they write, turn the medal over. I did. I stopped breathing as I read:
“But it is the back of the medal that holds the biggest surprise. The central image is a monogram: the letter M with a crossbar through the middle supporting an upright cross. Bizarrely, and completely unremarked upon by modern scholars, the lower half of that symbol turns out to be the cuneiform word for Inanna, the Sumerian ‘Queen of Heaven.’ The first cuneiform tablets were not translated until much later in the nineteenth century, so there was no way that Catherine, even if she had been educated, which she most definitely was not, could have understood what she’d seen.”
I was flabbergasted. And thrilled. And excited.
But I still hadn’t prayed a rosary.
The next morning was the third day of the dark moon—the day we receive a divine gift. As I completed my dragon anointing, I knew—and I knew that I knew—that my gift for the month was to say the rosary.
Shaking, I dressed and went downstairs. Standing in my living room, tears falling off my cheeks, I said my first rosary in 52 years.
- But I did NOT get on my knees. I walked. Back and forth around the living room.
- I said the Hail Mary, NOT as a prayer to Mary but as a prayer to the goddess in her three faces of Maiden, Mother and Death Crone.
- I said the Glory Be, NOT naming three male gods (father, son, and holy spirit) but as the harmony of wholeness honoring the Father, the Child, and the Holy Mother.
From the moment I said the rosary in this new way, my body began to unclench.
Slowly I relaxed all the way into joy.
As I finished that first rosary, I shed a few more tears because I knew I was remembering something. Something true. And that memory was re-membering me back into a love that had been waiting for me for a long long time. A memory that is waiting for all of us. And for you.
So now the rosary for me is a walking prayer and I walk it every day.
Does it work you might ask?
Well, on Friday my son had an interview with a public defender organization in Queens. He had interviewed with Legal Aid two weeks before and heard nothing.
As the interview in New York began, I walked the rosary around my living room in Florida. Three times. When I finished, I texted Jerry that I’d walked the rosary for him the whole time.
He responded that he thought the interview went well, but added:
“After I got out I checked email and got an invite to a second round Legal Aid interview with the director of criminal defense later this month! So, walking prayers for the win!”
I love that: “Walking prayers for the win!”
I think Clark Strand and Perdita Finn, co-creators of The Way of the Rose community and co-authors of the book, will love that too!
I love the ancient goddess rosary so much that I invited Clark and Perdita to join me in the first and only prayer intensive on this divine feminine practice. They are traveling extensively for the book, and this will be their ONLY rosary class all year!
We made a detailed page for this radical prayer intensive.
- Watch the video so you get to meet Clark and Perdita and see some goddess rosaries.
- Then read about the three key truths we’ll be exploring together: Mother, Mantra, and Mystery.
As a prayer artist, devoted to mystical prayers of the cosmos, ancient and new, I couldn’t offer you anything more beautiful than a walk with the goddess hidden in the rosary.
It doesn't matter if you have prayed thousands of rosaries as I did, or you've never touched one. The Mother waits for all of us.
I do hope you’ll join us.
We open Tuesday, March 3 and meet on Tuesday March 10 and 17, followed by a mystical celebration of the divine feminine on Saturday March 21.
We will be a truly global community.
Don't be concerned if you can't be with us live for some or all of the gatherings. Everything will be recorded for you in both video and audio formats.
Soon, we'll be walking for the win together!
to the radical path of the divine feminine no longer hidden from our sight,
PS: I'm gathering sources to purchase goddess rosaries and will be posting them on our resource page.
And Emma Kupu Mitchell is blending a goddess-directed sacred anointing oil for our intensive TODAY under the full moon. The link to purchase the oil will be on the resource page, too.