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The Priestess Path
“The Priestess is filled with intuition and instinct. She can speak to and interpret the will of the gods and spirits. She interprets signs and omens; she is at peace within herself.”
Priestess as a symbol for the divine feminine has been around for eons. We associate her with Pagan worship, Greek, Roman and Celtic mythology. Followers of a Goddess. Following the path of a Goddess.
Priestess was first used in 1652 and became the collective word to refer to any woman of religious leadership or power of ancient or Pagan religion. We lost those words, titles, roles of women in service to her God/dess.
Each tradition had its own word in use.
The Celts perhaps called their Priestesses flaith. She was considered a female druid and most likely a form of bard or poet. There is little information on female druids. Just references in myth and stories. A mention here and there that the mother of a hero was a druid, a prophetess.
Perhaps the best-known Priestesses are those of Avalon. Led by Morgan Le-Faye and at the later era of the British Celtic cycle. Holding onto their connection to Mother and Earth as the Romans emerge into their mists and midsts. But even of these, scant is known. Again stories passed on, half written, half legend.
During the Greek era we hear about The Pythia. The High Priestess of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi. Also known as the Oracle of Delphi. It was believed that she channeled oracles directly from Apollo. This was a title handed down to successive women chosen for their high moral character.
Vestal Virgins were the name for Priestesses of the Goddess Vesta in Ancient Rome. Six Priestesses were chosen from elite families to tend to the Goddess. They were the most powerful women in Rome. Swearing a 30-year vow of chastity to the Goddess, they availed of power, privileges and rights that no other woman of Rome had.
Enheduanna was a Sumerian princess and the High Priestess of the Moon God Nanna. She is believed to be the first poet and author of any gender and one of the earliest known women whose name is known. She was also devoted to the Goddess Inanna and wrote hymns in her name.
There is reference of Dakinis in Ancient India and Tibet. Priestesses of the Sky who carried the souls of the dead. Though they are considered more like Angels rather than the Priestesses of other traditions.
So have a moment with that word and how does it feel in your body? Can you feel her history in you?
And how do we bring that Priestess with us into the modern day? Are we called to her? Do we have an affinity with her? Can we see ourselves on a Priestess Path? Can we see ourselves as Priestess? Are we comfortable with that title and all it entails…?
Women of our Ancient traditions once offered their life to her in service. The love of their God/dess drove them. It lit the fire within them.
The Priestess Path is an uncomfortable one. She asks us to give up that which does not serve us. To look deeply within and be comfortable with the discomfort we find there. She is a hard taskmaster and you may falter and give up many times. Yet she holds us close. Cradling us in her warmth even during the darkest days. Even buried, suppressed, forgotten, she finds moments to shine through us. We get glimpses, we find gold and it is enough for us to breath. To be still. To Be. To listen. And we find her again, and we see ourselves in her face.
We are cultivating the Priestess within. Worshipping the ground on which we walk. Seeing the Goddess in every woman and how we can support her, raise her, worship her. And seeing the Goddess in everything we see around us. Birth, death, cycle, patterns, acceptance, grace.
We were once conscious devotees of the Mother. In whose embrace we lay, generation after generation. We were so deeply connected we could feel her heart beating. We could feel the reverberations. We could feel her breath on our lips and we could worship her in gratitude for all she provided. Priestesses by birth to a Goddess we revered.
We hear her call to us in whispers, in longings, in yearnings. She shines through every woman across all time. And her song is the one of love and acceptance. Of peace with self. Of knowing. Of truth.
Our temples are here and now.
And her name is Woman and she is rising.
* This article was first publishing the Spiritually Fierce magazine issue 2 2019
Sharna is deeply committed to reconnecting women to their History and to themselves. Through acceptance, embodiment and connection we can rewrite our stories. As an Intuitive Guide, I facilitate wholeness through all aspect of self. Past, present and future across all timelines. Through the love of self, we can find our way home.