View Full Version : Defining women's mysteries

May 17th, 2008, 08:41 PM

Recently, an aspect of the Dianic and Goddess traditions has forced me to confront my own beliefs into what I believe Women's mysteries are.

What do you believe women's mysteries are? We hear it talked about and revered but how do we define it?

May 17th, 2008, 08:45 PM
Maybe this is the point of the thread, but what do you mean by "women's mysteries"?

Like... are we talking about the baby-making, monthly-bleeding properties we happen to have here? Boobies?

Or are we going super-spiritual and talking about baby-making "mothers of all" kind of deal?

May 17th, 2008, 08:49 PM
Maybe this is the point of the thread, but what do you mean by "women's mysteries"?

Its the point of the thread. How do we define "women's mysteries"? Is it spiritual, physical, emotional, etc.?

May 17th, 2008, 09:01 PM
Oh, okay. I would say that it's purely emotional, MAYBE spiritual.

Well... I guess you could say that women have these great mysteries, about giving birth and all that. But if you look at the science of it, it's not really any more mysterious than how sperm is created or how the sun produces heat.

Then again, I don't ascribe the creation of life to the mother. I ascribe that part to God... the mother is the one who carries that life, which is indeed a beautiful thing, but I don't see her as having some mysterious magickeal abilities beyond that of other humans.

Reproduction, menstrual cycles, puberty, these are all very clearly understood things scientifically. I don't see the grand mystery in them. I mean... there's no mystery anymore. We KNOW how these things work.

I guess I'm not a romantic about it.

May 17th, 2008, 11:11 PM
Reproduction and fertility are really not actually understood that well scientifically. And motherhood certainly is not, even in terms of how hormones, pregnancy, and the labour process work.

Yours truly,
Someone who had four miscarriages and did intense research on the subject

May 18th, 2008, 01:01 AM
Reproduction is understood well enough that nobody has to wonder how/where babies come about. Sperm fertilizing the egg... gestation... etc.

I understand that sometimes they don't understand why a woman miscarries, but nobody wonders just what exactly causes pregnancy anymore (other than the obvious observation of intercourse), nor is it a mystery how the baby develops. Compared with many things, we know a great deal about fertilization and gestation.

All I'm saying is that it's not a grand mystery anymore.

I'm quite sure that fertilization, gestation, and birth are spiritual processes, but there's nothing mysterious about it. :)

May 18th, 2008, 03:08 AM
This thread seems to be a bit off track. I believe the original question was how do we define women's mysteries? It's a very personal question that warrants a personal answer. I believe it calls for information and discussion about how we view them and what they mean to us--not a debate over what is and is not a mystery.

There seems to be a disagreement on what "mystery" means. In my opinion, a spiritual mystery is not something we don't understand, but something we understand through divine revelation or personal gnosis.

So, reproduction and fertility issues are mysteries in terms of the deep, mystical hows and whys of it--not through the science of it.

I can give an example that jumps to mind, but to be honest, this is not something I'm comfortable talking about in a public forum--especially considering the direction this thread has already taken. :weirdsmil

May 18th, 2008, 03:11 AM
P.S. One point of this discussion might be how women's mysteries have changed through history--or maybe that should be another thread :)

Terra Mater
May 18th, 2008, 03:16 AM

Recently, an aspect of the Dianic and Goddess traditions has forced me to confront my own beliefs into what I believe Women's mysteries are.

What do you believe women's mysteries are? We hear it talked about and revered but how do we define it?

There is the physical side, our bodies and what affects them. There is the spiritual side, rites, rituals, and practices that can only be done by women, because they are based in our physical differences and are times with our life cycle.

May 18th, 2008, 03:21 AM
Its the point of the thread. How do we define "women's mysteries"? Is it spiritual, physical, emotional, etc.?

For me a big part of the mysteries are knowing myself. This is true for many traditions, I know. But I am a womyn and as a solitary I have no general mystery tradition to be subsumed by. This leads me to a second part of my mysteries, my relationship with the All. How do I live within the context of what is around me and in my life? Another part is truly understanding that everyone is holy, including myself.

I struggle with all of these, they are not easy but all the holy people have always said they are simple.

So, yes, the mysteries for me are spiritual, physical and emotional. They are about the fabric and context in which I live.

May 22nd, 2008, 12:39 AM

Woens Mysteries for me are that i think we have a great knowledge, we are great healers in ours selves of course we can learn alot of things, about healing but in us is allready a great healing power and the Mysterie is discovering it allso we have special energies and things we can give to the World and thats the Mysterie because with each it is different and so its a interesting and mystic Journey for every Woman.

I hope you understand

Bye Lhiya

May 26th, 2008, 11:24 AM
It depends how you define mysteries I suppose. To me, mysteries aren't "big secrets" but are those aspects that must be experiential - elements that can only be understood through experience. To me this is the very reason women's groups and paths are valuable - because there are aspects of our lives, as women, that only we can experience, and often these aspects we can only comfortably discuss with other women. Although my husband, for example, doesn't mind if I mention my period at all, I really don't feel he can understand and appreciate fully how it makes me feel inside. Just like there are probably things in his life that I can't possibly understand.

So often women's mysteries are menstruation and fertility, and about our "womanly bits", because for many of us those things are charged with meaning and emotion and complexity. I have a whole nest of emotions and personal feelings all wrapped up in a chaotic mess around the general concept of fertility (probably you could see that in my earlier post). No one who hasn't dealt with infertility, pregnancy, and motherhood, could understand, frankly. It's a woman's mystery that I can share with other women with similar experiences. Doesn't matter if scientific parts are studied, the whole set of experiences is personal and mysterious and intensely charged with emotions and spirituality.

Women's circles and groups simply provide a safe place to explore those things with others, to share support, to celebrate and mark events that maybe others wouldn't understand. For example, outside a group of women, who could really understand how I feel when I want to have a memorial to mark my miscarried baby's death? Certainly it's valuable and meaningful to have my husband recognize it, but try as he might, he couldn't replace the women who have been pregnant and experienced motherhood and loss. He couldn't identify with my feelings as well, and he couldn't help me work through them the very same way.

Similarly, it could be women's mysteries when a woman makes the choice to have an abortion, or to avoid becoming a mother, and instead to pour herself into creativity at work or in other ways. Still we can come together as women, with similar experiences and the understanding that can only come from these experiences, to help this woman mark her choices and deal with them. We could be there just to listen, or even bounce back ideas or formulate responses to the woman's thoughts to help her work through her feelings. We can do this because we are also women, because we experience what it feels like to be people who aren't mothers even though we have the biological parts.

Anyway, I'm rambling. I'm just saying women's mysteries aren't so much secrets and physical bits as the mystique behind and around all our experiences. And that there isn't a list of things or events that I mark as "women's mysteries", just that it's a concept I can explore that may or may not apply to things women go through. Anything women go through that can only be understood by going through. Anything that women find spiritual and emotional and meaningful that is unique to them.

May 26th, 2008, 08:41 PM
I don't know that I can explain what I mean when I say "'Women's Mysteries" because, I think, by their very nature they are things that have to be experienced to be understood. I just know that, in my circle, we often have a moment of clarity that is so united, and so perfect, and so REAL, the we know we've touched on a Mystery.

I find that often, these Mysteries center on things that aren't secret or anything...they are just things that are very real and immediate and profound in their simplicity and accessibility. Often, they relate to our similar experiences as women (for instance, our joy in our solidarity or our feelings of power when we own our bodies in the moment) or to physical experiences as women (such as menarche or child birth). But, to sit down and write a list of Women's Mysteries, to me, would be hard because I think they have to be experienced to be understood.

I can say personally, for instance, that child birth is a Mystery I don't yet understand. I can understand the process logically and scientifically, but I've never experienced the power of the process itself, so it's not a Mystery I've experienced in this life. However, when I see other women in circle describe the births of their children, and see the glow in their auras and the light in their eyes as they describe what their feelings about birth is, I can see the Mystery in it and recognize it for what it is.

Rowan Darkmoon
May 26th, 2008, 08:48 PM
For me, women's mysteries refers to those parts of womanhood that make up womanhood, and that can't be explained without thought or experience. These aspects may be emotional, physical, or spiritual. They are what make women "women."

Of course, these aspects are not the same for everyone, and everyone will not have the same aspects, but when I think of mysteries, for either a man or a woman, they are that part of life which going through contribute to one's sense or what it means to be a man or a woman. I guess the "regular" mysteries I would then define as those experiences one goes through in order to become a person.

October 2nd, 2016, 08:09 PM
I'm going to bring this thread back to life in the hopes there are other Goddess Witches here.

To me, Women's Mysteries refer to the wisdom passed down through the female line. In my family, my mother has given me wisdom which has been passed through at least four generations that we know of.

The reason for this knowledge being "Mysteries" is because it doesn't always get passed down. There are some women who must discover this wisdom by themselves. And, even when you are told the information, you must still discover the truth of it.

Some of this wisdom deals with inner strength, belief, hormones, children, and other aspects of being a woman. The information can be used by men, there is no reason for it not to be, but it deals more with the feminine than the masculine.