Brighid : A Bee Goddess?
Humans have always had a close relationship with bees. Honey has probably been a staple food for humans as long there has been humans. Beekeeping is one of the earliest skills of settled farm based society and culture. Bees, and other insects, made settled farming possible through their action of pollinization of fruit trees, especially apple trees, and other food crops.
Bees not only provide food through honey and their gathered pollens, but their waxes have been essential for effective medicines and as an aid in metalworking.
Sadly, as we hear from the media, the populations of Bees around the world are fast dying and nobody seems to understand why. Ancient legends have foretold that if the Bees died and became extinct in this world, human extinction would soon follow.
Rather than ponder on the gloom and doom of this I would like to journey with you through the origins, the genesis of the Bee on earth and how its symbolism has shaped how we live. Through understanding this maybe we can encourage, in our own small way, a stronger lifespan for the Bee, both in its pollinating existence and through our closeness to what we may call "the Bee Goddess".
This adventure may also inspire some folks to be inspired and illuminated to understand more about the building of many ancient sites in Erin and across the world that are between 4000 and 6000 years old, and understand more about the Goddess spirit we connect with.
In several of these recipes - a very important ingredient is Honey.
This may have some origin to the tale of St. Brigid proclaiming that "heaven is a sea of ale".
earliest Bee mythology
Much of early mythology that created the stories and codes for ways of human living was inspired by other life, especially the ways of birds and insects along with some mamals and reptiles. Our mating and marriage behaviour, for example, mimics many of the ways of sea birds.
As I have said, through introduction, the bees' lifestyle seems to have inspired our human need of social order that is cooperative and productive.
For example, in Egypt Bees symbolized a stable, ordered and even obedient society and the Egyptian symbolism and reverence for Bees later moved on into the Freemasonry movement that still exists today.
Bees of over 100 million years old have been immortalised in their own honey, frozen in time in amber. This is well before humans were on this earth.
Since humans roamed its as if they knew that honey, and other producted manufactured by the Bee, were regenerative and even miracle making.
It is said Bees accompanied Adam and Eve into the Garden of Eden, called a "Golden Age", and honey dripped from trees like dropping rainwater.
The Greeks called honey the "awakener" as they associated honey with their Sun God Elector and called amber stone, "Electon"
Before we get into Greek mythology it is worth considering "honey hunting" through the lands that are now Spain and Portugal that started about 15,000 years ago. It's a tradition that is still in Spain today, but in the form of Bull Fighting.
were Bee Goddesses the first angels?
The Sumarian medicine men from the Mesopotamian civilization of Sumer,who flourished between 5300 - 3500 BC, are told as being the originators of apitherapy, caring and healing with products from the bees.
The Sumerians also appear to have been the first to depict winged figures in art, including humans with wings, including images of the Bee Goddess?
Could the Bee Goddess have been the inspiration and archetype for biblical angels?
Last night as I was sleeping,
I dreamt that I had a beehive
here inside my heart.
And the golden bees
were making white combs
and sweet honey
from my old failures.
Written By:Antonio Machado and translated by Robert Bly
Bees and Bulls
Bullfighting today is passed down from "Mithraism" which includes the ritualistic slaughter of bulls. Where this comes from and how it connects to Bee mythology we have to delve deeper.
We need to delve into a time when the Goddesses were revered the most, the golden age of the Bee Goddess, the Age of Taurus the Bull.
One clue most of us know is the bible and other holy books scribing about how "the Lord promises to bring the Israelites out of Egypt and into a land flowing with milk and honey" described as a mythical utopia; symbolic of the image of the Mother Goddess, the Bee Goddess?
Milk of the cattle, honey of the bees.
Some more clues have come from Catal Huyuk, an ancient town or city in southern Turkey, that was first discovered in 1958 and later dated as being of around 6500 BC, over 8500 years ago. This is regarded as the oldest find of a truly farming and craft based culture. Catal Huyuk is the only ancient place discovered so far that features images of a Mother Goddess, Bull and Bees together. However, this is about 2500 years before the Age of Taurus time, in fact toward the end of Age Of Cancer.
Huge statues from the Assyrian cities of Nimrud, now in today's Iraq, and Persepolis , now in today's Iran, appear to have evolved the Sumerian 'winged tradition' by transforming bees into bulls with wings.
It is said that ancient Assyrians believed that when Bees were found on the carcasses of dead bulls this represented a sacred regeneration of souls. Their art included placing a Beehive in the head of a bull as a sign of some kind of soul purification, but this interpretation is vague..
This developed into a belief that Bees were born from Sacred Bulls that became a leading belief in Egypt that spread through Mediterranean cultures, on both sides of the Mediterranean through to what is now Spain and transformed into its bullfighting tradition.
Was bullfighting related to an encouragement to release the Bees within the Sacred Bulls they fought or for the Bulls to attract the Sacred Bees.
I somehow feel all this is are fragments of tradition and wisdom from the Bee Goddess reverence Age of Taurus.
It is worth considering how Bull Fights were an important part of Erin Mythology. The well known epic, The Tain, is completed with a bullring fight between the Brown Bull of Cooley and White Bull of Achill, and the Bull Ring rath is still visible there at Rathcroghan, Co. Roscommon.
Lesser known, and only slightly visible now, is the ancient bullring by the stone circle of Castleruddery in Co. Wicklow but I do not personally know of stories from there. Nearby is evidence of a settlement that is said to be the second oldest known in all of Erin.
To me this is another indication of Minoan and Sumerian Ways arriving in Ancient Erin. Even the words Iran, of the Sumarians, and Erin are said to come from the same word, but that is another feature for another time.
from Mother Bee to Mother Goddess
The Mother Goddess image manifesting from the life of a Queen Bee is an interesting speculation.
Bees are a true matriarchal society and this seems to be a perfect example than many of the Goddess pilgrims that visit Erin seem to see..
The Queen Bee is the mother of all bees in the hive. Her power is absolute and she can be fierce.
A Queen Bee grows in a pouch while worker and drone Bees grow in six sided honeycomb cells. The Queen Bee grows in16 days while the rest of the bees take about 21 days.
While growing and as an adult the Queen is fed "royal jelly", a high protein substance produced from the heads of Worker Bees.
The Queen Bee, in the hive, fights to be the sole queen, the sole mate to all male drone bees present and will aim to kill all female queen competitors in her way. To do this, unlike all other bees, she can sting repeatedly without dying herself..
Surprisingly the life of the Queen Bee has not manifested itself into mythology stories of Brighid, that I am aware of, but it certainly fits close to the stories of lusty Queen Maeve of Connaught. Maeve, the lusty queen taking on the attention of many male pursuers and disposing of them too.
Maeve the queen who sent many men out on quests including the fetching of the Brown Bull of Cooley, another link in mythology to the symbolism of Bulls and Bees.
Sacred Bees in ancient Egypt
Ancient Egyptians seem to pool myths, traditions and ways of many tribes to form their own,just like the Greeks and Romans did later and the modern Celts and aborigine tribes are attempting to do today.
One of the pools of myths and traditions was the synthesis of the veneration of Bees.
Over thousands of years, Egyptian farmers increasingly perfected the organized craft of Beekeeping, and the medicine men developed very sophisticated apiculture. Beekeeping was very important in Egypt, especially from around 4000 BC until 2000 BC, especially in the Egyptian Delta. Also, beeswax was an essential ingredient in the creation of effigies used in rituals, so crafting with beeswax was an important trade to learn.
King Menes, founder of the First Egyptian Dynasty, was given a title that translates as "the Beekeeper", a title passed on to all Pharaohs that followed. Also the Pharoah's administration had an "office" called 'Sealer of the Honey', but I am not sure what its role was.
Stories of Sacred Bees in Egypt, especially in the Delta, is a huge subject to fill a book or more. Saying more will lead me off topic here but it is worth engaging into personal research on this subject.
the Dance of the Bee Goddess
Bees are the only insect that communicates through dance. When bees find a new food source, that is too far away to be smelled or seen, they go back to the hive and dance.
Their dance tells the other bees both the direction and how far away the food source are. The dance is complex and seemingly too inspired to be a life feature that evolved.
The scout bee dances on the honeycomb in the hive. The other bees then follows the dancer and imitate her movements precicly, because all worker bees are female. The bees also take in and memorize the fragrance of the pollen in the nectar.
If the food source is within about 50 meters of the hive, the scout bee bee does a circular dance on the honeycomb.
If the food source is further away the scout bee does a figure of eight dance, known as a "waggle dance".
The direction and angle the dancing bee cuts across the diameter of the circle also reveals the direction of the food.
In ancient times, especially through the Age of Taurus, it appears that the dancing of Bees was inspiring, special, sacred especially when visioned with the Queen Bee being central to all movement by the bees.
The "dancing Bees" would have been an imagery to impersonate dancing around the Queen Bee of all life, the Mother Goddess the connecting spirit of us all and all life that is seeded, born, grows and matures. The Goddess Queen Bee of plants, trees, insects, fish, reptiles, mammals and ourselves, the humans.
I believe this is the origin of several ritual dances and folk dramas that have evolved, and still performed today, to celebrate and promote fertility and nature's abundance.
the Bee Dance and Labyrinths?
In Australia, there are aboriginal cave paintings of Beehives dated back to around 10,000 BC. These painting also include images of men that seem to be carrying bags of honey over their shoulders. Close to these images are spiraling circles. These are the same images we see around ancient Ireland, such as within Newgrange and on Pictish art in Scotland.
Many mystics interpret these spirals to represent planetary alignments or some kind of mapping for the flow of life, the flow of Qi.
Aborigines are still very close to honey as a sacred food. Their shamans still performed rituals to increase their finds and supply of honey from their hives, that is essential for them for a variety of both medicinal and nutritional uses.
Could it be that the spirals, especially if they are featured as triple spirals, were created not to align heavens, spirits and life flows but to honour, venerate and align with the Bee, or the Bee Goddess?
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Minoan Bull in a Labyrinth in a Beehive
Minoan Bull in a Labyrinth in a Beehive
The Minoans, a Bronze Age society famous for its extraordinary expansive overseas trade were a culture that seems to have been guided by bull images and bee traditions.
British archaeologist, Sir Arthur Evans christened this ancient race, "The Minoan", around 1900, after the deed of ancient King Minos
Their ritual of bull-leaping, interpreted from discovered and restored ancient art was an especially popular, and a wonder. It seems the sportsmen grabbed the bull's horns to antagonize the animal who would catapulting them up and backward. While in the air their seem to perform acrobatic stunts before landing again.
It is speculated that these bull leaper symbolically represented Theseus, leaping over the constellation of Taurus.
The famous Cretan Labyrinth was commissioned to the royal craftsman Daedalus, by King Minos. Mythical descriptions of this famous labyrinth, with its Bull headed minotaur recall an image of the intire labyrinth being within a Beehive shaped structure. Some storytellers tell of its winding passages guiding souls on a journey through to the afterlife rather than the wrath of the Minotaur.
A wonder is how much this Minoan labyrinth image is connected to the much more ancient shamanic Bee images of ancient aboriginal Australia
Honey was a valuable elixir exported by the Minoans, later bards speaking of it being distributed as a "magic potion" to ensure a long and healthy life. As a preservative it cannot be beaten. It is said that honey used to mummify ancient bodies 1000s of years ago is still safely edible today.
The importance of Beekeeping in Minoan times has been speculated from the abundance of Minoans hieroglyphs that graphically illustrate beehives around the palaces.
Several gold rings of Minoan craftsman dating from around 1500 BC, have been discovered on Crete, and other places around Greece, portray bee-headed goddesses or goddesses holding bull's horns above their heads.
The symbolism and stories of bees through Minoan life I could probably write a book about, and some authors probably have.
Out of the Strong Came Forth Sweetness
Though there appears to have been extreme Minoan reverence for Bulls and Honey, Minoan honey is also heavily symbolized by Lions, but I will only briefly touch on that imagery.
The first Lion imagery I think of those is the Tate And Lyle logo of the dead Lion carcass surrounded by swarming bees. Tate And Lyle, if you did not know, have been a long time sugar crystal and syrup refiner. Their Lion logo has been around since 1885. It was first used on their Golden Syrup product sold as a lower cost alternative to honey. Soon it was on their Black Treacle molasses product.
The slogan under the bee swarmed dead lion on their products is "Out of the strong came forth sweetness". This refers to a Biblical story in chapter 14 of the Book of Judges.
Samson was travelling to the land of the Philistines in search of a wife. During the journey he killed a lion, and when he passed the same spot, on his return, he noticed a swarm of bees had formed a comb of honey in the carcass.
Samson later turned this observation into a riddle at his wedding. "Out of the eater came forth meat, out of the strong came forth sweetness". The founders, Tate and Lyle, were Presbyterian devotees.
Bees n' Apples make Mead
Soon, I am going to add some words and images here that connect Brighid, the Bee Goddess, the traditions of Imbolc all to the drinking of Mead, an elixir made from honey and the cider of apples.
First, there are some intriguing myth origins to the creation of Mead.
Clues come from an ancient culture called the Dogon tribe from the West African region of Mali, well featured in Robert Temple's questioned and controversial book, "The Sirius Mystery".
The Dogon belief system seems to have been around from well into the Age Of Taurus, 4000 BC, maybe before, and lasted well until maybe up to around 200 AD.
The Dogons referred to a 12 sign zodiac like western astrologers where the Bee was the symbol of Libra which in ancient times was said to be an Apple Tree of Life symbol with the Chaldeans and other Babylonian races. The Greeks gave Libra its current blance scales symbol.
The Dogon tribe seem to believe that the Bee symbolized establishing balance and harmony in the zodiac that was communicated through all life. To them the origin of life arriving on earth was not the arrival of the Apple Tree of Life but big bees with wings, the Bee Godesses?
Someone, some peoples, probably the Egyptians, seem to have merged the Sacred Bees and Apple Tree of Life imagery, and added their brewing and distilling wisdoms to create what we now call Mead, as the most sacred of all drinks, the original of " Uisce Beatha" before the alternative more mass produceable liquor we call Uisce, whisky, became what we more commonly call "water of life" today.
Mead origins seem to be indicated in ancient Egyptian scribings where honey is frequently mentioned as a vital ingredient in beer, as made by the Egyptians then. This beer appears to have become a trading currency and used as a form of wages.
Egyptian beer was even put aside and saved to form part of a woman's Dowry to pass to a mate at marriage. In fact, it seems this was two way as in ancient Egyptian marriage contracts the husband also had to vow to the wife a guaranteed supply of honey through their marriage. It seems as if she was the brewer.
The transition of honey to cider rather than hops and other plants seems to have origins with the Dogon tribe of Mali, but indeed eventually became strong tradition in Erin and from there taken around Europe by druids and priests.
the old harps tell us what the Bees know
While the mythology of Bees comes to us abundantly from the Sumerians, Minoans, Egyptians and Romans, ancient Erin had an equally close relationship with bees and the life of bees.
- An old gaelic word for bee is "bech",
- a swarm of bees is "saithe"
- and their hive was often called "corcog".
- The courts of chieftains, kings and queens were regarded as sacred centers of beekeeping.
- Honey, along with apples, was a staple of the diet of the ancient Irish, long, long ago before potatoes.
- Honey preserved meat and fish for the winter.
- It was added to hot milk to protect and preserve health often heated from the stirring of an iron poker to add iron and charcoal carbon from the ash to line and protect the stomach
- All fresh food was dipped into bowls of honey on meal tables.
- Mead was made from apples and honey as a ceremonial beverage, and I will speak more of this in another chapter.
- The High King's seat at Tara Hill had a special residence called 'The House of Mead Circling" and i think we have to imagine what happened there..
- Old Druidic Laws, especially the Brehon Laws, protected bees with "Bee-Judgement", a long set of specific regulations regarding the care and ownership of bees, swarms and hives.
There is an ancient tune called "Sith co Nemh", pronounced "sheeth coe nyev" described as a "bee charm" that "asks the bees what the druids know"
The story I heard was that a new beekeeper would go into the land and make a location as enticing as possible for the bees to be attracted to when they swarm in the spring. The charm is to encourage the bees to a built hive, or without a hive to a branch on a tree to form a hive. It was believed that bees love the sound of music from bronze so an instrument with bronze strings was essential.
One of the ancient Gaelic harps is known as a Clair Search that are told of in a tale as having their strings tuned to the drone of bees so they would translate to the bard "what the bees know" so he could share their knowledge and wisdom with us.
This following CD contains a version of Sith Co Nemh - the Bee Charm
Some actually call Sith Co Nemh the Morrigan's blessing
Irish version ...
Sith co nem.
Nem co doman.
Doman fo nam,
nert hi cach,
lan do mil,
mid co saith.
Sam hi ngam,
English version ...
Peace up to heaven.
Heaven down to earth.
Earth beneath heaven,
Strength in each,
A cup very full,
Full of honey;
Mead in abundance.
Summer in winter
Nymphs and Faeries Buzz Away
Referring back to Minoan life, its imagery and its tales there are many tales of male bee gods too, as well as the bee maidens.
The Bee Gods of the Minoans are said to have been transformed out of Bull heads, each one being a "Melissaios", a Bee Man or Bee God.
Many women are said to have been transformed into growing wings and become maidens of the Bee Goddess, each one being called "Melissa", simply another word that loosely translates as Dancing Bee.
Sometimes these maidens are described as nymphs. Later ancient Greeks transferred the name of "Melissa" to describe an unborn soul and the nymphs became winged maidens who looked after the sacred places where leaving souls travel through.
The Melissaios, the Bee Gods cause me to wonder if their traditions transformed into the Horned Gods of the Gaels and Celts, as their transformation from Bulls to Bees was from big horns to big antenae.
The Melissa, the Bee Maidens, the nymphs who guide and protect souls, seem very similar to the Fairies and Faeries of Irish, Scottish and other British myths.
buzzing around Carrowkeel
I started writing this feature after a workshop and discussions, over time, that explored how our collective human behaviour is like bees. We all seem to have a spirit, deity, doctrine, or head of an order that we work for, that we say we have a "duty" towards. If there is no image in our hearts and minds of who or what we serve, then no work is done and there is no motivating purpose.
Near where I live are the Carrowkeel Cairns, that archeaologists carbon date as being over 5500 years old. It is interesting that their carbon dating includes measurements using some ancient pollens found their at the sites.
The signposts leading visitors to Carrowkeel label them as "Carrowkeel Tombs", but their tomb use, grave use, did not seem to happen until us much as 3000 years after they were built. This indicates their purpose was for something else.
One person, from the USA, in a group, that I walked to these cairns, described these cairns as "call boxes to the other world". I thought that was a very apt description because when we make phone calls, once upong a time in call boxes or what we called phone boxes, its a two way communication. Mythology speaks of these cairns being a place of two way spirit coming and going, therefore a connection to birth and leaving
The building of these cairns was a huge task. They would have been much larger than they are today as many of their rocks have been taken for material for stone walls and buildings, especially from about 700 years ago until about 100 years ago.
Archaeologists have concluded that each cairn was for a family so the spirits of each family are said to have came and went from each sacred cairn point.
The building of the cairn, to me, gives the image of the family members working like worker bees dedicated to creating the "hive" for their "Queen Bee" the spirit mother of the entire family's ancestry, and possibly regarded as the Queen Bee of the whole tribe, though each family had it's "hive".
The Queen Bee that also blesses the family with life, give birth to new life, and takes live spent when it has fulfilled its time here.
The Queen Bee that also blesses the land that the family also work like worker bees and drones in ways that are of respect and honour to the Queen Bee, the Goddess, to who we call Brighid today?
The finding of the storage of bones of those passed on at the time of building these cairns is very interesting and I will say more in another chapter.
I will close this with a thought, which will soon develop as a chapter, about the "beehive" places of prayer, the cells of the monastic communities that are still quite well preserved on Skellig Michael and Inishmurray islands. Are these inspired by these cairns?
Some tell of these beehive cells being the inspiration of St. Gobnait, Deborah, from Co. Clare, the 5th century born patron saint of Bees and Beekeepers. It is said St. Gobnait, like Brighid, was inspired by stories of an ancient teacher or goddess that some say was Gobnaid, but that is a 100% spelling and pronunciation guess. Gobnait's pattern day is February 11th, quite close to Brighid's Day and the Imbolc.
Actually, I may do a complete feature on Gobnait soon ...
seeking the Mother Bee again
our biggest eco challenge
Today there is a huge and rapidly growing interest in Bees. It is being realized that Bees represent the biggest disaster that is happening on our planet, and it can be be reversed with collective effort.
There is suddenly worldwide media and social network exposure of Bees and their destructive CCDs, Colony Collapse Disorder.
The serious decline in bee health around the world, especially in the USA where the wild bees are almost extinct and in Europe that is catching up to the USA, it is revealing how our ways are endangering the balance all living things.
There is a huge disconnection between us and the rest of life that is now snowballing into consequences.
Some mystics describe this as misguided practices of the dominant patriarchy that is motivated to kill insects and destroy the environments where bees find the flower blossoms. The current bee crisis is a global crisis. Without the pollination of blossoms by bees, we will no longer have fruits, nuts, and many kinds of vegetables.
I agree with the mystics that we need to invoke within ourselves an vision of the Bee Goddess presence, and the spirit and light of Bhride, of Brighid to be of this Mother Bee Goddess. We need this to know how to feel, how to value and know what to do to prevent the extinction of bees on this earth, to prevent the extinction of ourselves and all life.
Albert Einstein said that if bees became extinct the human race has a maximum of four years to live before they are extinct.
Reversal and solutions cannot be done overnight or through passionate efforts from individuals. Resolve would not be achieved from lighting a candle and go on social networks to ask the world to light candles the same time as us and pray for the bees. Having said that, maybe such an action could increase attention to the plight of bees in relation to our existence.
As we become illuminated to the wisdom, rather than knowledge, that how we live, how we consume and what we put faith in has been damaging our planet's health.
Fortunately, I believe we are seeking and reconnecting with our deep relationship to the natural cycles we live within. Through this I believe we can re-connect to ways to live that nurture and sustain our Mother Earth, our Mother Goddess, our Mother Queen Bee.
does Freemasonry show a way?
Early American statesmen shared a bond with Freemasonry, the now well known secret cult where The Bee remains its most important symbol.
At the heart of the Masonic tradition are concepts of stability and successful commerce, virtues that were important to the Egyptians, inherited from the Minoans and other trading races, and inspired the Freemasonry movement adopted within the USA.
Freemasonry's Bee symbol represents their vision of the "Beehive" order for mankind. Bee symbolism is a vital component of Masonic ideals, but have they twisted it to suit another agenda?
The 'Encyclopaedia of Freemasonry' speak of the Bee being as important to Freemasonry as it was to the Egyptians. The reason being that compared to all other insects; "only the Bee has a King."
I find that to be a peculiar quote as all other reference I make here is to the Queen Bee. The natural Bees society is matriarchal but the Masons refer to the King Bee.
Egyptian pharaohs did carry the title of 'Beekeeper', and pharoahs emerged out of a dynasty creating culture that suppressed, or at least tempered the goddess worship carried on by the Minoans, Sumarians and other cultures in pre-dynastic Egypt?
Are the Freemasons trying to sustain a human preserving Bee like culture or sustaining the patriarchal Beekeeper image of the pharaohs?
To me, its seems through Freemasonry the beehive has changed from being a practice of life of nature from the Mother Bee Goddess to an emblem of commerce that is being revealed today through the huge globalization of a handful of corporations taking control of earth operations rather than the Mother Goddess Queen Bee. Corporations that have evolved to dictate what water we drink, what homes we live in, transport we use and now more recently what seeds we can use to grow food, and so it goes on.
These corporations tell us they are doing the work of God, and they are protecting us and creating affluence.
Roslyn Chapel near Edinburgh, founded by William Sinclair 1st Earl of Caithness in the 15th century, is renowned for its elaborate display of Masonic symbolism. Roslyn is perhaps more famous for it believers who believe the chapel is hiding treasures of the Knights Templar or even the Holy Grail itself.
Roslyn Chapel does host a wonderful carved column known as the Apprentice Pillar that is adorned with a Tree of Life symbolism; this being the two dragons of Yggdrasil, the World Tree. This resides at its base of the pillar while a masonry vine spirals vertically around the column, drawing attention to the ceiling.
It is said that the ceiling above the Princes Pillar represents "paradise" on earth. Then on the roof of the chapel there is a stone Beehive with a lone flower petal entrance. This was actually home to a hive of bees up until the 1990s when they were removed for "safety reasons"
Roslyn's connection to the Knights Templar is well known, as is the Knight's Templar being of France and fleeing France grabbing as much of their wealth as they could.
The French were the inspiration of Freemasonry on the USA, largely through the close long term relationships between France and Scotland, and the founding fathers of the USA being of largely Scots origin.
I am not coming to any personal conclusions with all this yet but through this we may discover how the much of mankind deserted the guidance of the Bee Goddess in preference to the Pharaoh Beekeepers
... which I feel we desperately need to change now to survive.
maybe Maeve showed the way?
The most controversial debate I find myself getting into is the subject of "heroes". A majority of our individual heroes are men, and women heroes are largely those who have taken to the sword as well.
To me a "hero" is a detachment from the Mother Queen Bee way.
The burial of people at the time when the ways of theQueen Bee Goddess was of race,of family, not of reverence to individuals.
Skulls would be stored in one place, high bones in another and no skeleton carried a name after passing.
I feel the epic story of Cú Chulainn is a good example. We are fed to believe in him as a hero and of Maeve as a demanding whore and her attacking warriors a band of thieves.
Turning this around I feel this tale of Maeve was a call of the Queen Bee gathering her hive, when we consider the symbolism of the myths of morphing bees to bulls.
I believe the ways of this patriarchal hero was to prevent this hive gathering happening. The patriarchal hero's intent was to take over her authority and entomb her hive with the selfish belief of personal eternal life being the "way" rather than a communual balanced life.
Fortunately, Maeve won. An often untold part of the story is that after her warriors had been slaughtered, then finally the "hero" Cú Culainn too, she simply sent in a herd of cows and as they left Cooley, the bull followed, as all bulls would in that situation, right back to her court in Connaught.
I wonder is Maeve was really one of the trinity of Brighid? I tend to think so.
The magic that our ancestors found in bees and their hive life seems to be entering our psyche again.
It is answering our questions, illuminating us back to seeing, feeling and sensing our Mother Bee again, and trusting that she will again guide us and assist us to make the changes for the challenges we face on earth for the earth today.
This is perhaps the deepest labyrinth journey that I share with our friends that visit here to our Garden of Labyrinths, especially the Labrys, that they feel free and comfortable to walk not just as a visitor but as a lost bee returning home.