Great Mother Goddess in Bear Form

I’ve been thinking about bears…

This sketch (part of a fill-a-sketchbook-in-a-month challenge I’m doing with my friend Stacy Kathryn!  #augustsketches) anyway, this sketch was inspired especially by a passage in Diana, Herself by Martha Beck where she describes a vision of ancient spring ceremonies.

The Arkteia

The Great Mother Goddess comes out of hibernation in the form of a cave bear and brings spring with her.  Celebration,  the cycle of life returning, of hope returning.

When I first read that passage, I had a vision of a great bear crowned in yellow flowers.  Somehow the European spring edible, lesser celandine,  calls to me as the flower they would have celebrated the Great Mother with.

The historical Arkteia was an ancient Greek coming-of-age ceremony for girls.  The introduction into womanhood.  The ceremony was performed to honor the goddess Artemis.

This is a really thought-provoking book.

I highly recommend it.  I’ve read it twice already!  You can pick it up here, if you’re interested.

And you can follow along with my and Stacy’s month of sketching with the hashtag #augustsketches on Instagram!

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