The Voice of the Awakened Feminine
The Song of Songs

'Path' of sunlight on sea and pebble beach

The Kabbalistic Hebrew poem of Shiar Ha-Shiarim is known to us as the Song of Songs. The Song of Songs, in its original Hebrew poetic form, through the sacred Hebrew Letter-Numbers, is considered to be one of the most profound of all kabbalistic writings. It has been wrongly entitled the Song of Solomon, and mistranslated into English and many other languages over the last two thousand years. Despite all the patriarchal interpretations, it has remained an inspiration to many artists and poets as well as kabbalists.

Its written form points to the period around the 3rd Century BCE; however, the orally-transmitted content is much older and points to an earlier period around the 10th to 14th Century BCE when the Divine Feminine was honoured as equal to the Divine Masculine.

The opening verse of the Song of Songs gives us insight into the inner meanings of this profound work, in which the Feminine Soul sings and dances Her awakening into Her Divine Feminine Source. In the Poem, She is the awakening Soul to the Fully Realized Human Being, felt deeply within the Heart and expressed through the feminine form.  This awakening is an initiation into the Creativity of the Universe which is simultaneously a conscious sexual awakening.

We are going to explore the first line of this Hebrew poem as midrash. The Hebrew term midrash means to inquire, to examine, or to uncover the depths of inner meaning within sacred Hebrew texts. Originally, these sacred texts were approached in meditative stillness, allowing their deeper meanings to be revealed: a midrash is not an intellectual exercise.

“..we have become conditioned by the Western concepts of intellect and mind, which influence our understanding of words, reading and writing. This makes it difficult to experience the reading of sacred texts as meditation and contemplation, in which we meet the reality behind the symbols contained in the writings…Before reading any sacred text, it is important to begin by being as present as you can; to still and silence the mind, since the text can only mirror back your own level of awareness.”
From my book Patterns of Creation Logos and the Tree of Life in the Gospel of John.

Verse 1 of Chapter 1.

שִׁיר הַשִּׁירִים אֲשֶׁר לִשְׁלֹמֹֽה

The opening verse is usually mistranslated as The Song of Songs which is Solomon’s.

Remembering that the Hebrew is written and read from right to left, this first verse says Shiar Ha-Shiarim Asher-li-Shalomah. The first thing to note is that Shalomah is not the name Solomon. Rather it is the feminine form of the word Shalom, meaning profound inner Peace; silence of the mind, stillness of infinite Presence.

Whose Peace is this? The Peace of ASHERAH.

Pillar figurine of the goddess Asherah
Pillar figurine of the goddess Asherah.
Judea, 8-6th c. BCE. Eretz Israel Museum.

Asherah is the original Creator Goddess of the Semitic peoples: she has been almost entirely erased from history by mainstream religion and is barely mentioned by most historians (except to call her the “wife” of God). However, she is central to our understanding of the Song of Songs: Asherah is the Goddess who inspires the deep awakening of the heroine of the poem.

אשרה

The Name Asherah in Hebrew

שִׁיר הַשִּׁירִים אֲשֶׁר לִשְׁלֹמֹֽה

This is a midrash of the first verse of the Song of Songs
Quintessence of all essences
Silence and Essence out of which all songs arise
Universal Fire – Spirit of the Breath of all Life
Asherah, resting within Her timeless essence
Even as she moves and speaks.
Creativity, giving Shape to the Cosmos
From deep within all of its arising subjects:
This is Her Peace.

This opening verse – and the entire poem – is a meditation in itself, and it reveals itself more deeply as we enter meditative space.

When you meditate the spine should be straight without holding yourself up or forcing your body into a rigid posture.

Breathe with deep awareness of the breath, from the base of your spine, awakening to this multidimensional conduit of consciousness connecting Heaven – the formless Spiritual dimension – and Earth – all the forms that are arising out of formless Spirit, as this moment, now.

Heaven and Earth are within you as you take each conscious Breath.

'Path' of sunlight on sea and pebble beach
Asherah was called the One who walks on the Sea

As you breathe with deepening awareness bring your attention into the Pineal gland at the top of the spine, level with the forehead and between the right and left hemispheres of the brain. After a few conscious breaths, bring your attention from the Pineal gland to the right hemisphere of the brain. This is putting attention into your right mind.

Breathe into this right hemisphere of the brain for six or seven conscious breaths. Then bring your attention back to the pineal, aware of the left brain as a part of the whole consciousness. The left brain is the seat of intelligence, so let it be clear, still, silent: Listen with your whole body, your whole being as you bring your attention into the opening of the Heart. Feel the connection of the Pineal gland within the heart, rooted in the heart, letting your attention expand from the heart through the six directions of Space: Before and behind, Right and Left, Above and Below.

On each in-breath you are gathering into your center, within the depths of the Heart. On the out-breath your awareness expands beyond the sensations of the body into your surroundings.

After a few more breaths, bring your attention back to the spine so that the breath massages the spine into gently opening. Check that you are not holding yourself up nor collapsing down, as you do this. Gradually bring your attention down to the coccyx at the base of the spine, energizing your legs and feet. As you do this put attention into your arms and hands at the same time, feeling them as extensions of the spine.

Your whole body is immersed within a field of awareness. Listen to the silence beneath any arising sounds and sense the stillness beneath the rise and fall of each conscious breath.

When you open your eyes to read the text, keep some of your attention on the breath and soften your gaze as if looking out from the back of the head.

From this meditative space, here is a second midrash of the opening verse of the Song of Songs:

שִׁיר הַשִּׁירִים אֲשֶׁר לִשְׁלֹמֹֽה

Shiar Ha-Shiarim Asher-li-Shalomah
Quintessence of all essences
Silence out of which all resonant beauty emerges
Stillness out of which all movement flows
No-thing, Source of All, timeless, formless.

She who consciously receives is the awakened vessel
Lover and Beloved
Lover of Life
Lover of this moment Now
This is her peace.

Rich golden and orange tropical sunset reflected in water
Asherah was also called the Queen of Heaven and Creator of lush abundant Life

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