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Tori talks about the Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene
I do believe that we all are, fundamentally, divided creatures. Emotions split from intellect, spirit from flesh and far too often sexuality is disconnected from what we feel, and are, as total human beings. But how, for example, can anyone have an understanding of the virgin if they don't also have an understanding of the prostitute, the saint and sinner in one body? Attempting to reconcile these opposing forces in my own nature is my goal and what I write about in songs like "Precious Things," and all the songs on Little Earthquakes... I do have a real commitment to the female, the feminine, the goddess side of my own nature. I am Mary, the mother of god and the Mary Magdalene figure now. [Hot Press (Ireland) - 1992]
Of course, I believe they [Jesus and Mary Magdalene] were together. Of course, I believe they were a couple and she understood things. She represents the goddess, the female, the feminine, the joining, and the equality. [Access - February 1994]
Mary was our role model in the Christian church, and we're talking about a woman that was a sexless being in the teachings. I think we can see what that's going to do to a whole culture. Pieces get cut out so that certain cultures can control it, and what got cut out in the Christian church was the sexuality and the passion. The shadow side of that was Mary Magdalene, who we've always been taught was a whore because that's the camp I was in. But why did I have to be divided from the two Marys? Shouldn't it be about the balance? It should be about a wholeness, but it's about division. [Creem - March 1994]
Some women have said to me, "I can't believe you've made God a woman," and it's like, "OK genius, leave the room, think for five minutes, go over your history, come back in the room and you tell me who has been the pope for the past few years. You tell me who's been ruling institutional religion: males, patriarchy and a male God." The female Goddess who has been our role model has been the Virgin Mary, a sexless being. Now even though the Virgin Mary had kids later on, nobody wanted to talk about that when I was growing up, nobody wanted to talk about the Magdalene. Nobody wanted to talk about Mary's true role. And people don't really think about how that affected an entire planet, to have the most populated religion worshipping a sexless being! [B-Side - May/June 1994]
There's this denial that the Magdalene was as divine as the Virgin Mary. I absolutely believe that she was the sacred bride of Christ. She was a high priestess and they joined houses. If that had been passed down this would be a different planet right now because the world of women would be so different. [Dazed & Confused (UK) - 1996]
I went back to the bloodline of woman, to the Magdalene [to understand what it would take to become a whole woman]. I wanted to know why the blueprint of the Magdalene was not passed down. What was passed down was the whore that wiped Jesus' feet. We skipped the whole phase of the woman -- having sexual desire, wisdom, passion. Being an equal to Jesus, in truth. I truly believe that there was a unification there, a representation of the wholeness. Man with his masculine and feminine in balance; woman with her feminine and masculine in balance. Two whole beings, joined together. The blueprint.
There's work from the past from other writers that have gone into this, particularly when you go back over a hundred years ago. And that was the beginning of the journey. [The Baltimore Sun - January 21, 1996]
When I would ask about Mary Magdalene, it was very clear that she was not a respected figure. And that always felt kinda weird to me, like, what are these guys so afraid of? And what are these old bags, these old women, so afraid of about the Mary Magdalene? What did she have that scares the poop out of them? And as I got older, I started to understand. She had, I really believe, this wholeness. You know, she wasn't about the Virgin or the Divine Mother -- bless her -- but it was about being a woman. You know, maybe a high priestess. Not the whore, but in her own right very much an equal to Jesus, more than some kind of, you know, "He saved her butt." I get so tired of that because I think that, you know, in the Christian side of things, in other religions, it's never about, you know, the women having that kind of wholeness, the women being able to explore these different sides. So I really think the Magdalene represented that, and nobody talked about that, so there were a lot of wars over chicken Sunday dinners, yeah. [WXRV, Boston - January 30, 1996]
I looked inward for answers - and to find the female. I was looking for the blueprint of women that wasn't in Christianity. You see, the Magdalene's blueprint wasn't passed down. The blueprint of the Virgin Mary - and the Mother Mary - was passed down, but not woman as independent prophet/priestess on her own. Strike the word prophet - woman/priestess, passion, compassion - that's how I view the Magdalene, not the whore who wiped Jesus' feet. any scholars believe that her true role was never acknowledged because of the threat that it would cause. Christianity - and other religions, but I'm speaking of that right now because I grew up in it - did not pass this down. Naturally, I think there's a fragmentation in the Christian myth - there is no myth of the woman without being associated through the man -- or through the sex -- whether she's a virgin or a mother. She's a virgin before the son of God is born and then she's a mother after he's born. Whether Mary Magdalene was the wife of the son - to me, Mary was truly the female representation of God. [Aquarian Weekly - February 21, 1996]
People make statements about "this unicorn shit" and don't realize that "this unicorn shit" was a secret code that millions of people were killed for. The gangs could learn a few things. [She's referring to history that survived through symbolism in tapestries and literature.] If you weren't toeing the Catholic line at the time, then you were a heretic. I'm trying to reconstruct some of these falsehoods. One of the greatest lies that has been told, the lie about the sacred bride and the sacred bridegroom. [Originally, Jesus was the sacred bridegroom, but the bride - goddess - was wiped out of the history by the founders of Christianity - making Mary Magdalene a whore instead of a priestess and taking away the Madonna's sexuality.] There's not a sacred bride in our culture.
We kind of skulk off into the darkness to fulfill these sides of ourselves. We get tied up or defecated on because we've judged our true desires as women so harshly. If the bride had been acknowledged, there would have been honor of the Feminine. There wouldn't have been patriarchy as we know it or matriarchy. There would have been balance.
There are reasons why we think the way we do. There are reasons why people are going crazy right now. A culture that doesn't know its mythology is powerless. Some kids show up at my shows crawling out of their bodies. They'd turn their power over to anything; that's because they don't know the tools to go in. [Spin - March 1996]
I was really drawn to the bloodline of womanhood. Mary Magdalene, the idea of the Magdalene having been a blueprint; not the Virgin or the Divine Mother but Woman -- high priestess, not just the chick that washed Jesus' feet with her tears. I've been reading some books that figure she was a high priestess of the Isis cult in Jerusalem. It became a major journey, going into the shadows and playing with those different sides of woman. [Keyboard - April 1996]
They hold this in a secret way, but you know, Mother Mary had other kids besides Jesus. She was enjoying herself. She had a life that no one wants to talk about. [Shift - April 1996]
A lot of scholars believe that she was, in her own right, a High Priestess. People believe that Mary Magdalene became the High Priestess when Jesus was being crowned "King" of the Jews. The weave of Magdalene represented woman. Not virgin, not mother, but woman -- which wasn't passed down. Certain fragments have been lost, theologically. There are secrets in the blood that get passed down. [Vox - May 1996]
I was singing in Christmas services [in 1994]; I was with my parents. I was watching the Nativity, and after a while I said to myself, "Wait a minute. There's something wrong here." We were singing "Away in a Manger" ... I started to wonder who, with everybody speaking of the baby Jesus, should come up to the cradle. And I found that, of all people, I wanted to have a chat about it with Mohammad, because the Prophet is the one who supposedly knows the Law. So I decided that they needed to talk about the Law -- the Law of the Feminine that had been castrated with the birth of Christ. I believe that Magdalene was the Savior's bride, the High Priestess. And that blueprint -- the compassion/passion, wisdom, wholeness. But this blueprint was not a structure that one could relate to Woman -- until now. Think about it. It's just been uncovered in the past twenty-some years. Even though women have been given power to be heads of corporations, we're talking about not just power within the hierarchy but access to the different fragments that make up the whole of Woman.
Sometimes I kind of chuckle to myself when I hear some girl saying, "Who cares about Mary Magdalene? That's over and done with." And I'll watch her as she needs to seduce the men in the room and play the little girl, do the pedophile dance, do the things girls have done for centuries to get power from the outside instead of power from the inside. Yet so many of these girls will come to me with tears in their eyes and scratches all over their wrists from self-mutilation, and I'll say, "I actually do understand the obsession to be difficult." ... You know you will not gain strength from this path. You just need energy from an outside source because you don't know how to access it for yourself. [Musician - May 1996]
Many scholars believe that Mary Magdalene was a high priestess who came from the cult of Isis. She wasn't this "anything for a fiver, honey." She was a peer to Jesus. [Curve - September 1996]
I always felt attracted to Mary Magdalene, with her mystical, "sinful" and unbelievable power. The separation between the two Marys in Christianity always fascinated me. The mother Mary, the virgin, is cut off from her sexuality. She stands for the spiritual. Mary Magdalene is cut off from her wisdom. She stands for sexuality. And I remember the ministers around our table at Sundays. When the name Mary Magdalene fell, a shiver went through them. They didn't know how fast they could change the subject to Mother Mary. Cause the fact that a woman can be holy and a horny cunt couldn't get through the minds of those Calvinists. That's why I try to combine those two Marys together. I marry the Marys, so to speak. That's my part of my alchemy. [Oor (Dutch) - September 18, 1999]
The two Marys were divided, the Magdalene and the Mother Mary -- divided in the psyche. So, the Mother Mary... the way I see it and the way I think a lot of mythology people that I respect see it is that she was severed from her sexuality, the Mother Mary, and the Mary Magdalene was severed from her spirituality and her wisdom. So, there's a division here - of almost this circumcision of women - Christian women have had to work through for the last 2000 years, and I feel the control that's really gone on. You know this whole thing of "divide and conquer," it's a joke really. Divide and conquer what, a village? No, divide and conquer a person with themselves, that's control. Then, you think you have to go through these people for some kind of soul purification, some kind of acceptance and forgiveness, and I'm like, "no, no." The Christian god can sit over there, and we can have a chat, and he can do stuff I can't do, I'm only a woman. But no, there's got to be respect that I'm a woman, he's multi-dimensional. But, I don't see the Christian god for me as the Divine Being. I think there are a lot of gods in a lot of cultures that have things to say, and some of them I disagree with, and some of them I think have a lot of deep truth. [Charlie Rose (PBS) - October 19, 1999]
I have a lot of love for witchy stuff. I do have a lot of friends, especially in New York -- you know that whole North-East thing going on -- that are very involved in Wicca. But I'm just a woman who believes in a lot of mythologies. There's a lot of truth in what a lot of my witch-friends talk about, and I hold them to be truths. I'd be a Dionysian waitress -- that's my scene. I am into all of that, and I have a lot of time for Jesus, but I think he probably was turned out by Mary Magdalene, and I think from the things I've read it seems as though she was more akin to a High Priestess in the Isis tradition. So, if we go into that side of it, I believe that there are a lot of things that have been hushed up and hijacked by the big three -- Judaism, Christianity and Islam. And I don't want to talk about the Buddhists, because I don't know enough about them to talk about them. I just know that anybody who had the little women, wrapping their feet and breaking their feet, they should eat the toe-jam from that. Literally.
I think everyone has a shadow, and the pagan side really believes in the shadow, but it gets so convoluted and mixed up in the Satanic thing, when -- as we know -- a lot of people conjure at the dark side of the moon, which is what I talk about in "Suede." I do a bit of my own conjuring, but not to take somebody's power away. It's to not take somebody's power away...
I don't believe in Mary the Virgin -- I do believe that that's what they needed to do, to take her sexuality away. I believe in her, but I don't believe that she was a virgin who had a child. It's not a dirty thing to bust your cherry. Do you know the word "virgin" originally from the Latin, does not exactly mean "no sex" -- it's a different word, it was brought to the sexual. When you talk about the pagan or religious side of it, some of the scholars that I have read believe that Mary, the Mother, was a Virgin priestess who had a wedding to the Godhead, who was represented by a male from a different sect, and that he was killed so the blood was given to the land, so there wouldn't have been a male there. So, she would have got pregnant by the sperm, by seed, and my argument to everybody is, is she any less pure if she weren't a virgin?
The Christian religion, you know, it's dickless, it has no penis, because when a penis didn't create Jesus, that really takes a lot away from you guys. I think whatever people's spiritual beliefs are, the whole sexuality/spirituality issue, that is my passion. Marrying the two Marys, the Magdalene and the Mother. The Mother Mary's sexuality was stripped from her in the myth, and Mary Magdalene's wisdom and spirituality were stripped from her, and so we're divided into these two Marys in the Western Christian world. And it has really been my passion to unite the two Marys, inside my own mind, inside my own heart, inside my own pussy. [Record Collector - November 1999]
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