The Archetype of
INITIATION MEANS "TO BEGIN." We unwittingly begin when Something within us is suddenly set into motion or we find ourselves in the Belly of the Whale,. It is the seemingly unfortunate, unfair situation that allows us to move into new understanding and to come to Self-Love. We have all participated in social ceremonies, such as weddings or graduations. But, it is when Grace or Fate creates a situation that cracks us open and brings us to our knees, we experience the full transformative power of Initiation. When the Initiation is complete, forever more, that Dark Night of the Soul, now realized as a Gift, becomes a milestone that we solemnly, respectfully refer to as, "Before [that] happened, I was ____, or I believed ____. But that experience profoundly changed me, I now know Something I could not have known otherwise.
Let the ancient, deep, and colorful symbolic language describing and mapping the
Archetype of Initiation
stir your imagination
to envision what is possible
in bringing about the long-awaited paradigm shift in our consciousness
that will allow us to participate in the
childbearing year as a Journey of Initiation.
Watercolor of "In the Belly of the Whale" by Pam England
When we give ourselves completely to our calling, or suddenly find ourselves in unexpected impossible situations, we are "swallowed whole in the belly of the whale."
Over the decades, we have all listened to countless parents struggle to name Something they felt was missing in their childbearing experience. Despite studying hard, they didn't find the kind of inner knowledge they sought in their frantic search for medical information. In their misguided positive intentions to "trust birth," they entered the unknown naively, unprepared to participate in or understand childbirth as an initiatory experience.
Phases of initiation
Archetypal Guardian and Thresholds
On sacred, ritual space and liminality
When trauma becomes initiation
Initiatory myths, poetry, and symbolism
The psycho-spiritual map of an initiatory process or journey
Alchemical transfiguration: the gift of Initiation
Finding meaning in the unavoidable tragic triad of life
Imagining birth work contained by the archetype of Initiation