The Christmas story tells of a birth two thousand years ago. Later in the 1st century, Jesus’ disciple John wrote the prophetic Book of Revelation. In the twelfth chapter, John speaks of another birth.
And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.
Contemplating these words, I pictured her dressed in a diaphanous robe, illuminated by light. I got curious how artists may have depicted her through the years. Among the paintings I found was one that recalled the image of Mother Mary. And yet, that is not actually what the verses in Revelation speak to. They portray something prophetic that includes her child, who is simply referred to as a man child.
Who is this woman clothed with the sun? There are women who read The Pulse of Spirit who honor Mother Mary and feel their own role in giving birth to the Christ. I’m sure there are many others who feel this same calling.
I see this woman clothed with the sun as a circle of people around the world who are awakening, and holding, within their collective presence, the spirit of the Christ. These are people who are providing a safe place among them for the Christ, so that spirit can grow. Perhaps this sounds like wishful thinking…something merely symbolic perhaps, or idealistic. And yet, for me, it is something so very real.
Many years ago we published from Sunrise Ranch a journal called JTS World. It was for children. A woman from my hometown in Westport, Connecticut, Debbie Sims, did some of the artwork in it. For one edition, she portrayed children holding hands around the globe. It was endearing. I was teaching second grade in California at the time and found a way to blow up this cover and put it on my bulletin board for my second graders. It stood there all year.
When we reach out to another person, we are building a circle of love that surrounds the world. We are creating the space of the circle. That space we hold is the womb of the woman clothed with the sun, holding the man child. In that symbology, who is the man child? It is the ecstatic, vigorous expression of the urge of Creation: the Christ. When we hold that space, we are loving each other, not just because it would be nice. We are loving each other because we know that as we are reaching out, we are creating a womb space in which something can be conceived and grow. An individual can be the woman clothed with the sun, who is with child. But the potentiality of the individual alone is so limited next to what a collective of people who have consciously committed themselves to being the woman clothed with the sun can create.
When I call a circle of people together, it is with that conscious intention. And without fail, as I conduct Healing Chant workshops around the world, that happens. Without fail, there is something born that delights and inspires the people who are there and uplifts them. Few are consciously aware of the underlying magic that has gone into creating that circle, and what has actually happened in their own experience. I don’t tell them at the end of the session, “You have just given birth to the Christ.” But they have.
We have an opportunity to be that circle of people who are betrothed to the sun that clothes us. It is an opportunity simply because that was the original intention of the creation of Emissaries of Divine Light, and that intention is present right up to this current moment among many who read this Pulse of Spirit. It is an opportunity because it requires choice and conscious participation for it to become a reality for anybody. It is a potentiality that is activated when there are people who consciously say, Yes, I want to be part of that circle.
For those who are locked into the finite—who are locked into personality, belief, culture, and the state of victimhood that is so common in the human experience—the opportunity passes them by. The fixation on finite things dominates. Often that person projects all their finite experience on everybody else, and perhaps on the opportunity itself and those who present it. It has ever been thus.
A person walks by the opportunity, unaware of what the opportunity is. Because you don’t really know what it is unless you seize the opportunity and participate in it. Then you know what the opportunity is.
Any such collective opportunity is introduced to us by someone. We celebrate someone who brought this opportunity two thousand years ago. In this era, Lloyd Arthur Meeker did the same. He was an initiating point. We can see initiation and activation in terms of time. We can look back at a cycle of time and attribute the initiation to somebody. But the initiating point is a point in space as well as time. It isn’t just something that got initiated way back then and has no relevance now. If there is the experience of the woman clothed with the sun, there is a finite point embodied through someone to focus the activation of the Infinite.
Inevitably, what seems to happen is that for people stuck in the finite, the point of initiation is seen solely as something finite. That was how Jesus was looked at. All the finite aspects of who he was and what he was bringing were judged. Of course, he wasn’t the first or the last. It’s what people do when they don’t transcend the finite. Even to this day, Christians make it about him, the finite, instead of him, the Infinite, which transcends him as an individual.
Nothing much happens if there’s not an initiation point in the finite. How else would it happen? We wouldn’t share what we are through this Pulse of Spirit if it didn’t come to focus in the finite. But the meaning and purpose of all finite things is the transparent experience of the Infinite.
There is this dance between the Infinite and the finite, but there is something that gets in the way of it, which is human ignorance—what I kindly refer to as “the muddle.” So many people are lost in the muddle, which is self-active human experience, where the human capacity is out of relationship with the Infinite.
Like anyone, I have some experience of this personally, from both sides of it. I had the opportunity to be introduced to the Infinite through an individual. I loved him deeply. In essence, what I heard back from him was, “Open to the Infinite, and pay it forward. And don’t take it personally.” I had the opportunity to learn that, for him, it wasn’t about him, and for me, it wasn’t about me or him. It was about the Infinite. What a gift!
I also have the opportunity to see people making the current opportunity we have about me, for better or for worse, and missing the whole point of what we are doing together. It is about something bigger than you and something bigger than me. It is about the opportunity to reach out to one another for the delight of becoming friends but, more importantly, to be the woman clothed with the sun. That might seem like a fanciful kind of thing. My experience is that it’s real. It’s real when it happens, and it’s imaginary and fanciful if it doesn’t.
When we reach out to one another for the particular purpose of becoming the woman clothed with the sun, we are creating a space into which the Infinite can come. The Infinite is born, and then its power infuses the space. The power of Love is present. Light shines, illuminating the space. We are becoming a sun. Shekinah. The Christ is being born, not just as a matter of religious belief but as a reality of human experience. Along with the power of Love and the Light of reality, there is the Christ Presence being born. We are giving birth. And then there is the sweetness, the preciousness, the nobility of Being that infuses the space, and we see it in one another. We come to realize that this is the reality behind all things on this planet. And within all people is the reality of the One who dwells.
Here is my Christmas poem, “A Forever Moment.”
I walked all the quiet night
through the snow to his home
with only the winter moon
lighting the path ahead.
Limbs of fir trees
hung low on each side
as carols sang in my head.
O Christmas tree,
Singing sweetly o’er the plains.
The crunching of snow
kept time as I trod,
one happy foot
in front of another.
Frost formed on my beard
as the broad brim of my hat
filled slowly with crystal flakes.
The smoke of burning pine
told me I was there.
And before I could knock
he let me in
through the heavy oak door,
polished from years of use.
I stood before him,
his back to the fire,
wearing a heavy wool cloak
down to his knees.
He seemed to know why I had come
and waited for me to speak,
gazing at me
with his blue-gray eyes.
“I never told you
how much I love you.
I didn’t tell you
how grateful I am
for all you did
that has made my life worthwhile.
I never said what you mean to me,
and how my whole life
has been saying thank you.”
He laid his hand on my shoulder
and smiled a smile
that lit up my heart
as it lit the room.
I smiled back,
and stood there
for a forever moment.
Then turned to enter a new morning,
and walked the long trail home.
May we share this forever moment together. And if you so desire, join with me and so many loving friends to be the woman clothed with the sun.