As remote and antique a term as “the Virgin Goddess” may sound to our modern ears, the inner meaning of this archetype has a lot to teach us. An archetype of the Divine Feminine, the Virgin Goddess has been found in myths and religions since the beginning of time. She is the Egyptian Isis, “She Who Gave Birth to the Universe.” She is the Roman Diana, “Lunar Virgin,” goddess of the sacred grove and Mother of Animals. She is the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus, the Divine child. Virgo in Latin means “unmarried.” As the Jungian analyst Esther Harding has written, the title of Virgin Goddess did not imply physical virginity. Rather, its original meaning meant “one-in-herself.”
Thus the Virgin Goddess is not the feminine counterpart of a male god, or even his partner. Instead, she stands alone as a divinity in her own right.
For men and women, whether married or unmarried, the Virgin Goddess is that part of us that is single, whole, and complete. She is who we are when we are born, and when we die. Attuning to that singular part of ourselves helps us to align with that one true thing that makes us essentially who we are. Reflecting on that archetype of devotion, purity, singleness, and single-mindedness helps us draw near to the goal our soul is seeking. Using Virgo’s talent for discrimination, we are able to discern what really matters, from what doesn’t. Complexity gives way to simplicity of being and the ability to choose wisely.
To attune to the Virgin Goddess, you may want to go somewhere where you can be completely alone: outside beneath the stars at night; on a walk in nature; or meditating in the silence of the middle of the night. Like a holy rain, fill your being with the three graces of simplicity, focus, and concentration. In the deep solitude of your soul’s innermost chamber, ask yourself these questions:
- If I had to leave this planet today, what is the one thing I would have regretted not doing?
- If a hurricane or earthquake struck, and I had to evacuate my home, what are the few precious things I would take with me – and what one is above all the rest?
- Where in life do I feel the most centered, true, and real?
- What is the one (life-affirming) thing I cannot and will not give up?
- What makes my soul sing?
The answers to these questions will, hopefully, take you closer to that one true thing, your soul’s task. You may discover that you have more than one true thing. That’s good to know. But as you look at your answers, you may notice that all revolve around a core ideal. And when you know that core truth, you also know that this is the area of life where you are called to show the same devotion a priest, priestess, monk, or nun gives to the truth that they serve.
Your one true thing requires discipline and concentration from you. Follow your meditation by creating a ritual that will inspire you to remember the one true thing you serve. Like all rituals, it will create a boundary between that which is precious, that which is semi-precious, and that which is of only fleeting value.