Jesus was a Child of Divine Rape

This is what Judeo-Christian civilization valorizes. This is why we dwell in universal, institutionalized Rape Culture. Like Zeus (from proto-Indo-European ‘Dyēus Pitar’ or ‘Father Sky-God,’ from which we get Latin ‘Dios Pater’ or ‘God the Father), who goes around impregnating virgins by shapeshifting into other forms, in the case of Leda manifesting as a large white bird, the Holy Ghost and/or The (divinely phallic) Word Made Flesh, likewise ‘quickens’ the womb of the Virgin Mary, most often portrayed as a dove, Venus/Aphrodite’s own bird, in canonistic Western art.

Hadrianic sculpture of Leda and the Swan

In the basal Greco-Roman- religion of the Roman Empire, Zeus/Jupiter raped tons of virgins and impregnated them all, of course, being the avatar of male potency and virility — from ‘vir’ (‘male’), related to ‘virtue,’ ‘virtuosity,’ ‘virago’ (admirable maleness in a woman), virgin (autonomous, self-sufficient, unto his or herself, chaste and noble like a man) — in multiple sneaky Divine Trickster Rapist forms. Note the Holy Ghost manifesting as the ‘Word’ (or divine ‘Annunciation’) impregnating Mary the Virgin in the historical Christian art below; it may me a lot tinier but it’s still God in the form of a bird impregnating a human female — one made to submit to His overwhelming masculine will, “as a handmaiden unto the Lord.”

The Annunciation c. 1525, by Joos van Cleve
‘The Annunciation’ by Fra Angelico

Dios Pater came as a swan to rape Leda and begat the Dioscurii, as a bull to rape Europa, as a shower of gold to rape Danae, etc., etc., ad nauseum, providing the requisite divine justification and authority for the Cattle Cult lifestyle of patriarchal Greeks and their successors, exonerating the violences of invasion, raiding, warfaring and rapine and acting as a prophylactic against the ‘pollution’ of blood guilt and contamination — what Christians call ‘sin.’

Leda shares some avatars and attributes with Oestre, an earlier version of ‘Mary,’ specifically the impregnating bird (from which she lays the cosmic egg), in the pre-Christian versions as a swan or goose. The distinct difference is that there’s no ‘submitting’ going on. In the ancient pattern, it is instead all divine conduct of Creation and fertility, between equally divine deities. These shared attributes link Her to the archaic Aphrodite of pre-patriarchal Greece, who rode a swan as her avatar, bore a white flower or lily, was associated with Love, Fertility, Creativity, Divine Knowledge, Wisdom, and the supreme Craft of the Creatrix. Aphrodite adds sacred Bees into the coterie of avatars of fertility.

Aphodite astride Her swan, with Her crown and scepter. Black Attic Ware, c. 450 BC.
Aphrodite astride Her Swan, attended by Erotes, Black Attic Ware c. 400 BC

The original attendants of Aphrodite were the Erotes, tiny perfect beautiful winged youth as shown in the Black Attic Ware above, who tended the fertility Goddess as pollinators tending the Tree of Life. They are shown hovering around the branches of the Tree of Life in Minoan art, frem whence they came, along with the Melissae, tiny winged women with bee features and co- pollinators, with the bird-featured Erotes, of the eternal Tree of Life embodied in Aphrodite. At the temple of Aphrodite at Eryx, the priestesses were called “melissae”, which means “bees,” and Aphrodite herself was called Melissa, the queen bee.

Of course, the later patriarchal Greeks and Romans made the sacred narrative of the Love and Fertility Goddess into a rape narrative, whereby their supreme Father God, Zeus, took the form of Aphrodite’s animal avatar, or swan form, so as to rape the Goddess under the new name and reduced status of Leda, a human female. The issue of this assault was the set of light and dark polarized twins, Castor and Pollux.

The Rape of Leda, Classical Period, Greek
Roman oil lamp, 1st century AD
Leda and the Swan. Marble relief from Knossos, 1st-2nd century AD.

The paternalistic theme of ‘Leda and the Swan’ remained a hugely popular subject for the art, poetry and ‘learned’ pornography of Rape Culture, some of the most notable examples from François Boucher for elite male audiences during the so-called Enlightenment.

Leda and the Swan by François Boucher, 1740, oil on canvas.
Leda and the Swan, 1817 — Theodore Gericault
August Clésinger (1814–1833) Leda and the Swan, 1864.

More graceful representations of the story, such as Goble’s, bring the Swan Maiden’s character closer to her source in the sacred narratives of the Love Goddess and Her swan or goose avatar, signifying creativity, fertility, knowledge, wisdom, arts, music, and refinement. This reconnection brings Her archetype still further back, to Her cousin in the Vedic pantheon, Saraswati. Saraswati rides her swan or goose avatar, and is the Goddess of creativity, also signifying fertility, knowledge, wisdom, arts, music, and refinement. She carries a lotus, lily or white flower, just like Aphrodite and Brigid. In the Rig-Veda Saraswati is explained as “Saaram vaati iti saraswati” — “She who flows towards the absolute is Saraswati” — thus edifying the ability of knowledge and communication to steer one towards spiritual absolutes.

The Folk and fairytale figure most often associated with Oestre, Mother Goose, is also the scion of this ancient sacred lineage of wise, fertile Sex- and Mother-Love Goddesses. Often shown with tons of children, or at least with a baby or two, Mother Goose bears traits of Brigid, Oestre, Aphrodite, Leda, and Saraswati.

Aphrodite’s ancient Pagan Persian equivalent (and probably both Her and Saraswati’s precedent) was Harauhuti or Hariti. She was also a Fertility or Mother Goddess, envisioned as a highly prolific mother with hundreds of children. Hariti’s history goes back to around 2500 BC or earlier. At that time the Iranians and Indo-Aryans were still one people– the Indo-Iranians. They worshipped two classes of deities: Devas and Asuras in Sanskrit, or Daevas and Ahuras in Avestan. After the Indo-Iranians split into two distinct civilizations, Vedic civilization (eventually) adopted the Devas as Gods. There are also similarities to Aredvi Sura Anahita (Arədvī Sūrā Anāhitā), the Avestan language name of an Indo- Iranian cosmological figure venerated as the divinity of ‘the Waters’ (Aban) and hence associated with fertility, healing and wisdom. Aredvi Sura Anahita is Ardwisur Anahid or Nahid in Middle- and Modern Persian, or Anahit in Armenian.

Hariti with children.”House of Naradakha,” Found in Shaikhan Dheri, Charsada, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan.

The relief carving from Southeast Asia above, surrounded by children, birds, and Trees of Life, and this Gandharan masterpiece, carved in a warm-toned schist, portrays Hariti as the epitome of maternal grace, a regal, divine figure. Surrounded by children and infants, she sits on Her throne, unperturbed. The ancient portrayals of Hariti, so like Mother Goose with all Her babies and children, shows affinities with the Romantic era portrayal of Leda and the Swan by Jean-Léon Gérôme, bringing us full circle, where Woman is pictured more like a Nature Spirit, or Deva, welcoming her Swan fertility avatar and all the magical offspring that come with it.

Jean-Léon Gérôme. Leda and the Swan, oil on canvas, 1895

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I'm a writer/researcher/arts educator on Vancouver Island and all round global citizen who loves humans even though we're such a phenomenal pain-in-the-ass.

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Yvonne Owens, PhD

Yvonne Owens, PhD

I'm a writer/researcher/arts educator on Vancouver Island and all round global citizen who loves humans even though we're such a phenomenal pain-in-the-ass.

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