Rites of passage are monumental changes in life that transcend the single individual experience. They can be tracked via translation into ritual, in various cultures and societies and that transition is often marked in blood.
When I put together ‘The Bloody Sacrifice’ I focused on the use of blood work in contemporary spirituality; sometimes used to mark a rite of passage; sometimes used to create change; sometimes done consciously and occasionally not.
Since the release of that book I have personally gone through the antithesis of these experiences.
Natural changes that marked the end of a blood cycle; initiation into a new facet of existence, a new cycle of spirituality.
The first of these changes was the death of my mother.
Pre birth we shared blood, at birth I was covered in it.
When she died the loss was profound because I had lost part of myself, and also an element outside myself which represented the most divine and unconditional love that exists.
I became aware at my core of the mother element on a universal scale; the Kali Ma that reaches a state of excitation with the scent and sight and taste of blood because it represents the ultimate in love, and the ultimate in connection with ones beloved.
Some time before this I completely stopped my own monthly bleeds although I continued to have a very obvious cycle, despite not ovulating. Whether this was my body’s memory of something it had done for 30 odd years or due to years of working with the lunar calendar, I don’t know.
I do know however, that my magick and creative processes changed dramatically.
My focus changed from the singular to the plural but in that plural was contained unity.
Akin to the difference of being carried rapidly in the current of a river or a stream and floating in the midst of a sea where one is synchronised with every movement.
I don’t feel as if I need to do in order to create change, I simply need to flow.
Of course I still embark on projects and explorations (one of which will to be explore this bloodless state) but there is a profound difference in the way I view blood work. I haven’t changed my thoughts or beliefs about the ability of blood to create and represent change within its contradictory grasp of both life and death; in fact I am more aware of it than ever.
What I am also more aware of, is that the power of blood exists in different forms, and one of those forms is absence.
When my mother died, my blood based ties that are the standard link of mother/child, merged into a universal life force, and when I myself stopped bleeding I also linked into this life force.
It is as if the ending of the bleeding, creates a sacrifice of self, and this sacrifice leads to simple and continuous connectivity.
Whether my changes are due to the above, very natural events in my life, or whether they are simply a part of becoming older remains to be seen.
Menopause I believe holds the key to mysteries that have been down played in the shadow of a youthful and buoyant Babalon at one side of the scales and the two dimensional and faded image of the crone at the other.
Germaine Greer talks of a woman over 50 becoming invisible and medical profession work on not explaining hot flushes,(which I believe to be a power surge, energy that was previously given out but with menopause is in the process of internalising and becoming part of the woman,) but treating and suppressing them.
Western traditions look at sexual magick being practiced in very masculine and phallocentric terms and Spare’s Mrs Patterson is held up not for being an initiatrix due to her post menopausal status, which I believe is the key, but because she is old and hideous.
We need to move beyond the superficial.
A woman is born of her mother’s blood sacrifice; sacrifices blood from herself every month; and sacrifices of herself by withholding her blood and then giving it again, at childbirth.
With menopause a woman stops the sacrifice and the power becomes a woman’s own; she returns to source, and with that return has the ability to lead others to the ultimate centre.
The wheel turns, and blood is its lubricant.