Award-winning author and 1,000 Goddesses founder Mare Cromwell on working for change against bigotry, intolerance, and inequality—and how we can awaken healing Goddess energy into our everyday lives.
Today’s modern society can best be described as a paradox: On the one hand, our culture seems to be quickly evolving into a luminous golden age of consciousness we’ve never before witnessed. People are coming together in refreshing ways to nurture the planet, create sustainable communities, and work for social change. Veganism has hit the mainstream; yoga and meditation studios abound on every corner. In lieu of sticking it out in corporate jobs, more professionals of all ages are walking away from empty paychecks to live their dreams and nurture their truest soul callings.
This awakening of human consciousness is creating movement toward greater creativity, compassion, wellness, and communion with nature, as well as a sincere respect for religious, ethnic, and gender diversity.
On the other hand, our world is grappling with the backlash of social pariahs like racism, sexism, homophobia, class inequalities, and religious intolerance, often leading to violence; unbridled materialism which has led to global warming, environmental decimation, natural disasters, and severe weather across the globe; and patriarchal world leaders on every continent who seem hellbent on hoarding wealth and power instead of serving their constituents.
As outdated patriarchal structures rise in backlash to their inevitable downfall, the need for a more sustainable world paradigm couldn’t be greater. It’s clear that now is the time for balance to be restored to the planet. But how do we bring balance to what seems like two opposite extremes?
For more insight, I sat down with Mare Cromwell, award-winning author of The Great Mother Bible and founder of the 1,000 Goddesses movement in Washington, DC, where, last year, hundreds of light workers gathered on the National Mall to honor, heal, and pray for Mother Earth.
As an intuitive healer, Mare believes balance can only be restored by awakening the “Divine Feminine,” which is helping both women and men reconnect to Source and step into more nurturing relationships with themselves, their communities, and the planet. Mare shared her thoughts on how we can awaken this healing Goddess energy into our everyday lives.
How did you arrive at doing this kind of work?
My work stems from studying with various spiritual teachers, including traditional Native American practices, for over 20 years. In June 2012, I was invited to do a ceremony for Earth Mother with a gifted Algonquin man, where Earth Mother’s consciousness was brought into my spirit body, and we (Earth Mother and I) have never disconnected. So I am spiritually guided by her and essentially have surrendered to her. Part of the reason for this level of surrender to Mother is that she helped me heal from lymphoma—completely outside of conventional medicine and doctors.
My second and third books, Messages From Mother… Earth Mother and If I Gave You God’s Phone Number… Messages for Spirituality in America, are wisdom messages from Earth Mother that she has asked me to put out into the world. The 1000 Goddesses gathering in DC was her idea—and my latest mission. Our next gathering is scheduled for 2018.
What have your experiences with Earth Mother taught you about the world?
I’ve arrived at a worldview of understanding that we live in a multiverse of exceptional spiritual complexity and great beauty. And it is all energy, whether denser or lighter energies. These are some of the awarenesses that play into my healing practice.
As our planetary caretaker, Earth Mother/Gaia is a very powerful spiritual being who is more aware than any human being could be of the grossly imbalanced and destructive energies that have been playing out on her. She is keen to see the balance and healing brought back in during these precarious times.
What does the Divine Feminine mean to you? Is it about gender or being more womanly?
The Divine Feminine is beyond gender. It is the ultimate compassion, and purest of innocence. She is nurturing, soft, forgiving, nonjudgmental, procreative, intuitive, sensitive. She is the birth of all that is.
How did the Masculine energy become so dominant in our world?
As I understand it, the primary reason that Masculine energy became so dominant is because of the influence of certain darker energies that came into our planet from outside.
Why is bringing the Divine Feminine back so important at this time?
We are living in rather critical times due to the fact that an imbalanced darker masculine energy has been in control for so long on the planet. Climate chaos is threatening low-lying areas around the world. Storms are becoming more extreme. Species are going extinct at extremely high, unnatural rates—so much so that scientists are calling this the sixth mass extinction since the time of the dinosaurs. This mass extinction is 99 percent due to human activities.
We are losing our biodiversity, which is the immune system of the planet. We are actually weakening the capacity of our Earth to restore herself relatively quickly when ecosystems are weakened or lost.
This does not even take into account the toxification of so many areas due to chemical contamination, fracking, coal mining, and more. Our modern society is essentially poisoning itself in one colossal unintentional human experiment. And we wonder why there are such high cancer rates?
Then there are the gross injustices that play out daily, where certain races and cultural groups are targeted by police brutality. Or women are sold into slavery or kept captive in prostitution rings. Or low-income neighborhoods are sites of environmental contamination. Or Native American communities are targeted for environmental injustice.
Many sociologists refer to the “normalization of a deviation” when it comes to the negative cultural conditioning that has shaped our current world order. What role has this phenomenon played in the persistence of darkness and ignorance on our planet?
Our cultural conditioning runs so deep that it is challenging to separate out what is truth from what is fiction in our lives. We were never meant to live in so much fear. The political and religious structures that have bound us in so much fear and separation have never served Earth Mother, nor the awareness of the Divine Feminine that has been lacking with the dominant "Angry God" belief systems in control for the past few thousand years.
We are meant to be living in community sharing. We are meant to be celebrating life here on this glorious Earth. We are meant to be understanding the consciousness and great intelligence of all that is around us including the trees, flowers, animals, and more.
How can we draw upon the energy of Divine Mother to empower us to heal the planet and ourselves?
The healing, compassionate energies of the Divine Feminine hold keys for us to wake up from our cultural stupor. It is time. (That is what Earth Mother keeps on telling me: “It is time!”) Most importantly, the Love of the Mother is so huge, so powerful, so compassionate, and she is waiting for all to rediscover her, invoke her, ask for her support, her healing energies. It’s absolutely huge how much she loves us in a nonjudgmental way.
What would the world look like once the Divine Feminine energy is allowed to express itself and govern our decision-making?
Once we collectively embrace the Divine Feminine within and without, we will come to understand how this sacred energy dances through all life around us, and that our entire planet is inherently sacred. We will know how to live here on Earth with a sense of balance and reverence toward all life. The dominant, fear-based, hierarchical (masculine) ways of being will have been shed, and the wisdom of the feminine will be restored into decision-making so that the needs of all will be met, including all life—and not just the needs of the elite.
We will know that contaminating our waters with chemicals is wrong on any level, and allowing for any level of toxicity in the environment is essentially contaminating ourselves and all future generations in an exponential way. And we will cease these actions.
We will know that the health of our ecosystems is critical, and the wisest set of actions are those committed to restoring all ecosystems to ensure our survival and the survival of all life on Earth indefinitely.
The wisdom of what is for the highest good for future generations and not simply the immediate one will be weighed in all economic and political decisions. The priority of short-term profits and externalization of environmental costs will become a thing of the past.
The mainstream American focus on material gain and wealth will evolve to a quality of life based on joy and community. Every region will have vital, sharing bio-regionally stable economies and an inherent sense of fairness and justice in how our resources are used. Waste will become a thing of the past as we remember how to honor natural laws where “nature knows no waste.”
We will evolve socially to a place where the role of feminine wisdom will be honored. The strengths of all women who have learned how to claim their inner power will be brought forth and be a healing force that will be honored by men (and not a threat to men).
What role, if any, do men have to play in the awakening of the Divine Feminine on the planet?
The role of men in this awakening is significant. Honestly, this awakening is one for both women and men and cannot come to full fruition without all embracing it.
The imperative with the growing global crisis of environmental destruction and economic instability is for all of us to honor our Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine aspects in perfect balance so that they may come into alignment within ourselves. From this growing alignment within ourselves will come an alignment and balance in our homes and society that we have never experienced, yet deeply yearn for in largely unconscious ways.
Men need to learn how to shed the older cultural patterns and belief systems that perpetuate imbalance and hierarchical behaviors that have led to so much injustice, separation, and suffering. More than anything they need to allow themselves to soften into their Divine Feminine aspects and allow these parts of themselves to be healed. The repression of their vulnerable softer, emotional (feminine) selves has led to too many centuries of self-abuse and abuse of others.
My sense is that men are being very challenged with this pressure to wake up to the shifting energies on our Sacred Earth as the Divine Feminine is coming forth more strongly. There are so few role models of men who walk balanced between their masculine and feminine. Their fears of the changes that are being thrust on them as more women step into their power (hopefully a feminine balanced power and not more imbalanced masculine power) are real and leaking out in some unhealthy ways.
We women also need to embrace our Divine Masculine selves in coming into sacred balance. We are meant to be living in Sacred Union within ourselves and those around us. It is important that we not be in denial of our masculine side. We need to honor it for personal sacred balance.
What role does organized religion play in this shift?
Of course, organized religion is being challenged greatly too. Yet these systems have to evolve with the current energy shifts and awakenings, as the planet cannot tolerate the imbalances they have encouraged or ignored for so many centuries.
Going forward, what can we all do to honor Divine Mother and gender balance in ourselves and on the planet?
There are numerous ways to keep the momentum moving forward. [Here are 8 courses of action for progress]:
- One way is to honor the Divine Mother in your spiritual practices. If you don’t have a daily spiritual practice, then it would be a good time to start one. We encourage everyone to gather in circles wherever they are if they can, to do ceremony to honor and invoke the Divine Feminine in and send these sacred energies to the heart of Earth Mother. And if they can’t be in the company of others, then to hold space in personal ceremony. For ceremony suggestions, click here.
- Tap into her from whatever tradition feels right to you, whether it is Hindu (Durga, Kali, etc.) or Buddhist (Kuan Yin, Tara), Christian (Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Guadalupe), or other belief systems (White Buffalo Calf Woman, Greek Goddesses, Norse, Celtic, etc.), or a combination of all. Ask for these Divine Feminine energies to come into your life to guide you.
- As for daily life, seek to be more compassionate and forgiving. There is too little of this in our society and global affairs. Learn to be a better listener to try to understand the differences of others. So much conflict could be defused by listening and understanding.
- Don’t hesitate to apologize.
- Honor your intuitive senses and cultivate them even more.
- Seek to find balance.
- Seek to bring healing energies in, wherever you may be.
- Heal the environment. Learn to live more in balance honoring wiser, more sustainable lifestyles. We really have no choice in this if we want to have a healthy future for us humans. The planet will continue without us—she is far older than we are. The question is our survival on her.
Looking for more how-to-live guidelines? Read on below for excerpts from Mare’s first two books, Messages From Mother… Earth Mother and The Great Mother Bible.
Mother’s 13 Commandments/Love Directives, Plus Precepts
I, Earth Mother, gave the planet a song. Please come to know you are part of this song as one in the vast web of life, no greater, no less. All that you do affects the song, for better or for worse.
- Your thoughts, whether from your higher self or lower self, affect the song as much as your actions, much as your Western culture has denied this for a long time.
- Everything has consciousness, the stones, plants, even mountains, rivers and oceans—all join in the song. Know that your thoughts and actions are registered in the song and affect the stones, plants, mountains and all, to support the positive universe or not.
- Developing silence of the mind and from this place—deep gratitude is one of the most positive things you can do for Mother and all others in the song, especially those very sensitive and intelligent ones such as the whales and the dolphins who are so closely attuned to the song.
- Fear that comes from your head is an illusion. Fear that comes from your instincts is not. Learning to discern between the two will help in stilling your mind and being in the moment.
- The song is most harmonious within an energy dance of authenticity, love, compassion, tenderness, patience and cooperation. It is good to learn this dance with all beings with whom you interact, whether two-legged, four-legged, winged or finned ones, standing ones (trees), or stone people.
- Come to understand your shadow self and make bringing it to consciousness to heal it part of the dance and celebration.
- It is all just energy—money, time, your job, your play, your love. Choose to make it as positive as possible and lose the illusion of fear within this energy dynamic.
- Love is the foremost energy. A quality of love that transcends what most of you call love. Mother Loves you. You all evolved from Love. Evolution is an act of Love.
- Know that the perception of perfection is an illusion. You are all the most beloved and delightfully flawed beings as two-leggeds and that is how it is meant to be—and it makes you all the more lovable. You are perfect in your imperfections.
- Know and honor your Mother as you honor your Creator. And if you want to put an icon of me on an altar, that’s fun. But any other graven images are not needed.
- Have fun! Life is a celebration! Life is an adventure!
- The more you celebrate life, the more you help your Mother to heal all over the planet, and encourage the whales and dolphins and all others in the song to sing more harmoniously with you!
- Touch me, your Mother everyday. Touch my skin, my earth. Let my healing energy come into you to calm you and heal you. Send your love energy back into me also… I yearn for you to consciously do this.
- Do not gouge my, your Mother’s, skin or break into my bones.
- Do not create compounds that will last longer than the very short-term out in nature.
- Honor the forests and replant trees.
- Honor the wetlands and restore them.
- Do not waste.
- Clean up your rooms. Big and small.
- Live in community. All are part of the community. Everyone’s needs should be taken care of by the community. Share.
- Listen with an open heart.
- Speak with an open heart.
- Be lean of judgment and speech.
- Be open to the mystery that lies in people and the world around you.
- Be compassionate with yourself.
Excerpt from Messages From Mother ... Earth Mother (Pamoon Press, 2012); for more on Mare’s writings and upcoming Earth Mother workshops, visit her website.