I spend January on a different kind of field trip. I joined the 21 day online Sadhana, that Chameli Ardagh was guiding, following Inanna’s journey into the Underworld. And what a ride that was!
The story of Innana’s decend is a very powerful one. You can read it here if you like.
It is an ancient story (4000 BC), of a Goddess that was very powerful in Sumarian culture. I enjoyed hearing that the Sumerian’s had two languages, one that was used by men, and one that was used by women when writing. And from this, we know Inanna’s story has been written down by a priestess, regarded highly in her society, giving us a scent of female power in that society, and of Inanna.
The myth opens a potent initiation into the mature feminine. What that meant I only understood later.
I knew this Sadhana was for me though, from the first time I read about it.
It started with becoming aware of the Ninshubur in me. Such a valuable quality. That which keeps an eye out for me, even when I go in deep. That which settles me back into my core when things get rough.
And then I started to descend through the gates, offering big stuff as I went through. Each step filled with insights and whirlwinds of emotions.
At the first gate, Inanna laid down her crown, symbolising her knowledge, the role she plays in the outer world, that which she is known for. I have already laid down so much, being chronically ill and unable to wear the crown of my professionalism. What was left now was the last thing that I can identify myself with for the outside world: I laid down my attachment to being a mom.
At the second gate, Inanna laid down her jewelry, symbolising seeing, hearing and expressing, our beliefs. A huge insight when I realised the Sky Gods had me believe, that the way to be safe, was to follow the rules. I tried bargaining, but in the end had to lay down my desire to be safe. Life is what it is, you can’t bargain with her for safety.
At the third gate, Inanna laid down her double strand bead mala, symbolizing her spiritual identity. And after I thought this was about my inability to stay in my body and keep it real, I realised this was about my total denial of the Goddess, of all that is Holy and Feminine. This made me feel humble without end.
At the fourth gate, Inanna laid down her breast plate, symbolising her intimacy and armour. I laid down my fears to connect in what it true regardless of potential conflict and endings. And my fear of not being seen and acknowledged.
The fifth gate got Inanna’s golden bracelets, her ability to take action and her giving and receiving. In deep despair, I laid down my longing for action that is outside my reach, my deep longing to contribute and be a functioning part of this world.
At the sixth gate, Inanna laid down her measuring rod and line, symbolising the masculine inside and out, and material life. I laid down my dependency on my masculine to be my sole saviour.
And at the seventh gate , Inanna laid down her robe, symbolizing her body, womanhood and sexuality. And I realized how I have always abused my feminine to make my way in the world. So painful, and so clearly. So I laid down myself as abuser of the feminine.
And then I was down with Her, with Ereshkigal.
There was a lot of mourning.
And after a while it felt strangely comfortable as well.
I had no desire to go back up, scared of what it would ask of me.
This is where I was reminded of the mature feminine that arises here.
There is no room for the nagging child, or the teenager in denial.
This is the nature of life.
Take it on..
So I started readying myself for the ascend, which showed me a whole new side of myself.
(to be continued)