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© Sylvia Benito, 2014
24th of December

Mother Mary


I am writing this to you from the edge of the Nosara jungle in my beautiful room at Blue Spirit.
Just outside my door are a tribe of howler monkeys having a nap. Their small black bodies drape over the tree branches in deep rest; at five this morning they were eating their breakfast and earning their name… howlers… as they woke me and the rest of the yogis who are staying in these rooms from our slumber.
They are not afraid of me, sitting nearly below them as they sleep. All hunting is illegal in Costa Rica, and there is no standing army. They have one of the most aggressive campaigns towards carbon neutrality of any developed nation, high literacy and an excellent educational system. It is my fourth trip here, and I fall more in love with it each time. Nosara, where I am now, is my most favorite part of the country. Gathered here are some of the worlds’ most talented teachers, healers, thinkers- and of course, the sweetest surf.

There is a palpable power in this jungle and ocean that is profoundly feminine.
Yesterday, I was gifted a healing session with a woman who is a true elder, a crone in the local community. As we worked together in a meditation, I felt a deep connection to my femininity. It is perhaps not something I give much value to in my ordinary life. I give more value to my mind.

My spiritual path has been one of non-duality, and as such, I have also tended to give little attention to the feminine since feminine/masculine dichotomies are dual and relative ones. I gave more value to what was absolute.

And yet, all of my most profound awakening experienced have been utterly infused by the energy of the goddess. Even though I did not think about the goddess as a concept, or keep altars to her, or anything of the sort. Surprisingly, my deepest dives into awakened consciousness have invariably brought me into the heart of the goddess and the feminine face of being awake.
My work with this wise, beautiful crone was no different. She initiated me into the wisdom of the crone, the feminine face of awakening, the longer, more patient, more compassionate time space continuum that the grandmother inhabits.

There is profound wisdom in the feminine. And from that embodied awakening, is stillness.
So as we move towards Christmas eve, let us invoke the compassion and heart of Mother Mary, as well as the clear consciousness of Christ.

What your family wants are not more presents. There is a certain manic quality to the holiday as defined by consumerism. What your family wants is presence.

We can invoke this presence by falling into the symbolic nativity story of the birth of light, the birth of consciousness which was embodied by Christ- and which is the same consciousness as taught by many other spiritual beings in other traditions as well. Let us remember the essence of these teachings, not as codified and institutionalized, but as freshly transmitted teachings of unity and peace.

And let us also fall into the soft splendor of Mary, who is the westernized face of the goddess, not separate from any of the other faces of the feminine that are revered in the world; Tara, Kali, Durga, and on.

The feminine awaits deep meeting in all of us, whether we are male or female. She is waiting for you, too. In meeting her, you will meet the true grace of Christmas.


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© Sylvia Benito, 2014
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