“If men do not comprehend the character of God, they do not comprehend themselves.” ~ Joseph Smith, Jr.
I’ve always maintained that I am no scholar. When I compose a blog post for Rational Faiths my contributions are primarily a product of fifty-plus years of living — the culmination of experiential knowledge coupled with revelatory enlightenment. This doesn’t mean I don’t read scholarly articles and books. It just means that’s not how I have learned the most important truths about life. I’ve learned by my own experience and through gifts of grace. As a result, my writing is primarily an expression of the heart.
This post is no different.
I’ve shared some of my thoughts and feelings about Mother in Heaven before. Coming to know Her is an ongoing process for me, as it will be for you if you choose to seek her. Even though my heart and mind have been open to knowing more about the nature of the divine feminine for many years, I feel like a newborn in this process. And, really, how could it be otherwise? Where in the world in past centuries do we find any reference to God the Mother — either in divinely inspired scripture or in mundane daily conversations? (This post answers part of that, but, really, it’s meant to be a rhetorical question.) Yet, I have felt her presence in real, almost tangible ways, much the same as I have felt Jesus Christ or God the Father in my life.
For me, the simplest path to knowledge of the nature of God, including the nature of the divine feminine, is through one’s own heart. I found her by opening my heart to the possibility that she exists. (See Alma, 32:27.) I’ve heard her voice at unexpected times and in unexpected places because I first had a desire to know her.
“ . . . When we understand the character of God, and know how to come to Him, He begins to unfold the heavens to us, and to tell us all about it. When we are ready to come to [Her], [S]he is ready to come to us.” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, (2011), 36.)
I personally feel that anyone can know Heavenly Mother. All it takes is saying something like, “Hey, Mom, I’m here.” What mother doesn’t answer her children when they call? (Also rhetorical — because I know darn well there are times we don’t answer our kids. Especially when we have three or four of them under ten and, well, can I just use the bathroom once without being interrupted!)
One way to open our hearts is to express our ideas through art. Those of us who have a propensity for artistic expression have seen how God is often revealed through the creative process. The more we engage Her there, the more She shows up. And if you don’t happen to be someone who creates art then maybe you enjoy reading and seeing the work of others. Maybe you will come to know her first through their eyes and then begin to see her with your own.
I encourage you to consider contributing your artistic work to “A Mother Here” Art and Poetry Contest. This is a wonderful opportunity to open the door of heaven just a little wider and invite Mother in Heaven to spend more time here with us on the earth. If you don’t feel that you can contribute your own art, but you feel strongly about bringing images of Heavenly Mother to our community, you could support the project with a monetary donation. This contest is exceptional for a couple of reasons.
Second, the judges are highly respected in their fields: Susan Elizabeth Howe, a poet and playwrite who teaches at Brigham Young University. Herman Du Toit, former head of museum research at Brigham Young University’s Museum of Art.
Please take a moment to visit the site. Organizers have compiled a lovely collection of essays and poetry for you to read. You can also learn about the rich Latter-day Saint history of honoring Heavenly Mother in poetry, music, fiction and visual art. If you have any feeling for or interest in the idea of Mother in Heaven, this is good place to go.
I personally feel that any experience of the divine feminine is worthy of expression. Sometimes that expression is highly personal and we choose to keep it to ourselves. But sometimes we don’t mind sharing. . .
a poem about God the Mother
her heart, pulsing
against my cheek.
She unlatches me;
gives me to the care
of my brother,
her firstborn Son.
She is weaning me and
I am weeping mother’s milk.
. . . . Melody Newey © 2013