The Vagina Portal to All Realms Sacred and Profane in Christian Iconography

Sheela na gig church door lintel

Sheela na gigs are figurative carvings of naked women that protected church portals around the 11th and 12th centuries. In canonistic Western art history, the mandorla or vesica piscis (“fish vessel”), the almond-shaped portal, birth canal or vulva is the door through which all entrances, exits, epiphanies and transformations occur. In art historical iconography, all Assumptions, Apotheoses, Second Comings, Ascensions or depictions of Mary or Christ in Majesty are framed within its curving contours. No one comes or goes — to or from this plane or any other — except by the auspices of the sanctified womb — in iconography and in actual fact — the womb of Woman, Earth, Time, Space and Cosmos.

‘The Divine Cosmos’ by 11th-century Abbess, artist, composer and visionary, Hildegard of Bingen

The examples below represent a mere fraction of the Holy Vulva Portal icon, representing the doorway to or from the Earth plane, or material realm of physical incarnation, for Christ, saints, sanctified cities like Venice, and even Mary herself — ascending, returning to Earth at the Second Coming of Christ at the Judgement Day, or being crowned Queen of Heaven.

The Anastasis
Fra Angelico Alterpiece

Illuminated manuscripts included vulva imagery copiously:

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.