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Can Myth Help Us Heal the Sister-Wound?

NOVEMBER 21, 2023

Working with the mythos of Athena, Goddess of Wisdom, cannot help but bring up the sister-wound. We know Medusa as a terrifying, monstrous Gorgon who was "cut off" and demonized, relegated to a state where her gaze turned all to stone as she languished in eternal punishment and degradation.

Isn't that just like a sister wound? How do we cut sisters off, letting the inner mean-girl gossip-gorgon slice the atmosphere with that paralyzing icy, stare? The sting of betrayal often leaves us Medusa-faced, eyes wide and mouth agape at what we've suffered at the hands of a sister....thoughts roiling like snakes as we pace a familiar soul-dungeon from which, it seems, we're never able to leave behind.

Sisters know secrets. Sometimes alcohol and circumstances blubber up to the surface and confidences become crucifixions. So, as we navigate the upcoming holiday season, sitting at tables of family and community, we might encounter Medusa. Either across the table or in the mirror. Or both!

Breathe, don't freeze. She's not a monster; she's as wounded as you are. Her thoughts are probably racing, too. In the final chapter of Medusa's story, the hero Perseus decapitates her and the blood droplets from the severed neck rise up to form the ethereal spirit-horse Pegasus. Now, that's a change of perspective! Lopping off the head of suffering reveals a higher essence and truth.

So, what might we need to lop off from our souls this season - things like contracts with pain or dysfunction, attachments to suffer-cycles - in order to better cultivate authenticity and enjoyment? If we could break some of our own tethers to our soul-dungeons, maybe something higher and better be released from the energy of that transformation. The mythic story as psychic template asks us if we're willing to symbolically lop off our own heads - to utterly discard an old way of thinking - in order to transform into someone better.

May you walk in wisdom this holiday season, with courage and love at your side, not overthinking, just living and letting live. Breathe. You've got this! So now, consider getting to the end of this article as an official prescription slip to have as much fun and healing laughter as possible over the holidays! May the ice break and the laughter bubble up, giving us all wings to rise above, enjoy and hopefully - heal.

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1 Comment

I love the visualization of lopping of the head of suffering so that the droplets may be reborn into a beautiful horse with wings. I'm going to use this as a tool, so yes, I think myth can help us overcome sister wounds. Thank you.

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