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Word Vs. Image

Word vs. Image.  The earliest forms of writing were cunieform in Mesopotamia and hieroglyphs in Egypt.  In Mesopotamia, the creation of cunieform was credited to the Goddess Nisaba .  In Egypt, Seshat was the Goddess of scribes, and created hieroglyphs.  Both cunieform and hieroglyphs took time to learn.  They each contained hundreds of symbols and were mostly studied by "the literary elite".  They were based on images.   In between Egypt and Mesopotamia, scripts surfaced that were hybrids of the two forms.  The peoples who lived between Egypt and Mesopotamia included Midianites, semi-nomadic camel caravaneers, Serite miners working copper quarries, Phoenician sea traders, and Canaanites with their terraced vineyards and olive groves.  To the north was the land of the Assyrians, and to the south stood the fabled city of Jericho.  Leonard Shlain, in The Alphabet Vs. The Goddess writes, "Wandering throughout these lands were groups of herders seeking pastures for their g
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Self Portrait: Zombie Food (My Brain)

I've been rereading The Alphabet vs The Goddess , by Leonard Shlain.  Published in 1998, it was inspired by a 1991 tour of ancient Greek sites led by a University of Athens professor.  At every site toured in Greece, Crete, and Turkey, the professor explained how the site had originally been consecrated to a Goddess and later was repurposed for a male deity.  Leonard Shlain was a brain surgeon.  On the way home from his trip, he was contemplating what could have caused such a widespread cataclysmic change in human culture.  He hypothesized that the development of alphabetic writing may have had enough of an effect on human brains that it moved our societies from being peaceful and Goddess focused, valuing the feminine, to being patriarchal and violent, valuing the masculine.  He spent the next seven years researching and then published his national bestseller. It's a fascinating book, especially in light of recent debates over differences between male and female brains. Before

The Story of Hesiod and Pandora

 Pandora is the first woman of Greek mythology.  The Greek equivalent of Eve.  Eve has an apple, while Pandora has a box.  Both the apple and the box release misery onto the world of men.  Both Eve and Pandora are punished.  Like Eve, Pandora and all of her daughters are sentenced to "experience difficult childbirth.  Having demonstrated the untrustworthiness of her gender, she--and all women yet unborn--were to be dominated by their fathers and then by their husbands." (Quote source:  Shlain ). I recently began reading Cassandra Speaks by Elizabeth Lesser, a book published in 2020, with the subtitle "When Women are the Storytellers, the Human Story Changes".  Part I of the book discusses origin stories.  Chapter 1 focuses on Eve, Chapter 2 focuses on Pandora.  The quote at the beginning of Pandora's chapter is from Polly Young-Eisendrath who writes, "Both Eve and Pandora bring death into the world.  This is a curious reversal of the fact that women bring


 I painted Athena in December 2020 as part of a Goddess painting challenge, at the very beginning of my deep-dive into Goddess traditions.  I painted her as a mean girl, inspired by Regina George.  I had never liked Athena, and the result was an unflattering portrait. Athena, the Mean Girl, original painting by Echoing Multiverse, December 2020 Inspiration:  The pop culture Mean Girl, Regina George My perception of Athena was based on the story of her punishment of Medusa.  I had recently seen a YouTube video from Medusa's perspective.  I wasn't yet aware of the complexity of Greek mythology, especially with respect to representations of the divine feminine.  Later I learned that this story of Medusa was written by Ovid, a Roman poet, around 8 AD, well after the classical period of Greek mythology. From Robert Graves, I read that Plato identified Athene with the Libyan Goddess Neith, "who belonged to an epoch when fatherhood was unrecognized...Virgin priestesses of Neith

Best Song of 2022: Meghan Trainor, Mother - Fan Art

 The song I needed this week was supplied to me by YouTube Music's AI. Mother by Meghan Trainor. Inspired by all the men telling her what to write, what career choices to make, and that having a baby would end her career. And just plain talking down to her as if she was worth less. The best lyric: "You with your God complex, But you can't even make life, bitch" Which goes out from me to all of the men who think I am worth less, as a woman, and as a woman who has chosen to be a stay at home mom. "I am your mother You listen to me Stop all that mansplainin', no one's listening..." Fan art based on the video. Thank you, Meghan Trainor. Full lyrics: I am your mother (I am your mother) You listen to me (you listen to me) Stop all that mansplainin', no one's listening Tell me who gave you the permission to speak? I am your mother (I am your mother) You listen to me Mr. Big boy, pullin' up in your big toy Sayin' all that blah-blah-blah, maki

The Loftus "Princess"

 In Northumbria, in the U.K., near the North Sea coastline, is an archaeological site near the town of Loftus.  It contains a circular enclosure of post holes surrounding a raised center, dated to 2200 BCE.  It is thought to have been a ritual site.  Other structures at the site include the "Oldest House", which predates Stonehenge.   In addition the Neolithic ceremonial site, the area was also the site of an Iron Age settlement.  Superimposed, cutting through the Iron Age houses, 109 early medieval graves have been found.  "Each was dug carefully into the ground to allow enough room for a body to be laid in the foetal position on its side....Beads, scraps of metal, parts of eroded weapons all suggested that these burials were not Iron Age, but more recent....more excitingly still, they seemed to date from a period when this part of the north of England was undergoing an ideological revolution.  They dated from when Christianity was putting its first roots down along the

Saint Helena

 I generally blame much of the patriarchy in today's society on Abrahamic religion. I recently started reading Femina: A New History of the Middle Ages, Through the Women Written Out of It, by Janina Ramirez, and I was struck by the fact that it was largely women who first brought Christianity to the English speaking world, and who were the early adopters. Even before that time, it is widely believed that it was Helena, the mother of Constantine, who convinced her son, the Roman Emperor, to convert to Christianity. Why, ladies? Today's painting shows Helena, now known as Saint Helena, following her travels to the Holy Land where she built the Church of the Nativity, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the Church of the Ascension. She's posing with the cross upon which Jesus was crucified, which she located and brought back with her as one of the most sacred relics of Christianity. She has the nails in her outstretched right hand. Helena has been given a position of honor