Saturday, March 11, 2006


By now, I trust you all know the three kinds of love: eros, philia, and agape. Here’s what maybe ya don’t know. Christians shiver to think you might get wind of this (they’ve buried it in the bottom bowels of the Vatican). It’s this: there’s a fourth love. This one’s older and Bigger than the other three: it’s Motherly Love (“Agape Mee-teh-rone”).

You think sex and friends are big? Try getting by without Motherly Love. Minus it, humans would be mincemeat. Without Motherly Love the species would come to a screeching halt overnight – sooner, even.

This love is so bigtime that the current Powers That Be don’t want us to write about it, talk about it, or even think about it. Because if we really grokked and respected this primal force, we’d be free.

Back when the human race was healthy, Mother Love was the center of the Divine Wheel. It told us all we needed to know. Almost everything was either mother or child; some things were both. The Golden Rule was “Love your neighbor as a mother loves her child.”

Around 30 A.D., however, someone decided to give the Mother a sex-change (actually, this happened several times in history). The Great Mother became a man named Jesus Christ. Jesus, of course, couldn’t say “Love your neighbor as a mother loves her child,” because that gave the people too much power. It was too easy. People would actually get it. Even if people had mothers so damaged by the war gods that they were unable to love unconditionally, the animal kingdom still provided models of unconditional Mother Love.

So what Jesus Christ said was “Love your neighbor as I love you” (John 13) and “Love your neighbor as you love yourself” (Matthew 22).

This confused people. “Okay, so he did magic tricks and fed lotsa people fish. So what? Ma fed us all the time – even if she had to go without.”

And, “So what if J.C. healed the sick. Ma fed me chicken soup for three weeks when I was sick, and got dark circles under her eyes until I was better.”

“And, “So Christ let them pound nails into his hands and feet. So tell me again -- how is this ‘love’?”

[For those of you who want more info on Motherly Love, go HERE, HERE, and/or HERE.]
The picture is one I own of a painting of the Goddess, by Susan Seddon Boulet


Mike said...

This one’s older and Bigger than the other three: it’s Motherly Love (“Agape Mee-teh-rone”).

Um... you don't even explain what this love is, much less actually name it. Unless "mee-teh-rone" is the name, and not a pronunciation guide?

Athana said...

You might be right Mike. I needed to put more info in about Motherly Love. I've therefore added three links, at the bottom of the article. "Agape meteron" is my translation of the Greek "ayapn untepwv" (as close as I can get without using the Greek alphabet). Just thought readers would like to have the pronunciation rather than the misleading "exact" English equivalent. Also, this is my own concoction, derived from inputting "mother love" into a Greek-English translator, and then using Greek books to transliterate.

Paxton said...

I am curious to know why you say it is older and bigger.

Bigger seems subjective, vague, and hard to establish. How does a strong agape love compare in "size" (since we are giving loves sizes) to a strong mother love?

As far as older, we all know where babies come from, so it seems at least possible that eros preceded mother-love, dunnit?

And are you *really* convinced that at the time of J.C., all people had mothers who loved them unconditionally?

Morgaine said...

Yep, that's it Paxton, pick away and slice it up and if you're really obtuse about the whole subject you might completely derail the conversation. Yawn.

Athana said...

"How does a strong agape love compare in "size" (since we are giving loves sizes) to a strong mother love?"

I was thinking about agape and Motherly Love last nite after I posted this post, Paxton. And the more I thought, the more it became clear that agape *is* Mother Love. I'd bet my bottom dollar on it. I think the early patriarchals took Mother Love, called it "agape," and then, over time, squeezed all memory of The Mother Goddess out of it.

So "agape" is really Mother Love stolen by the patriarchs from The Goddess.

Look at agape. What sets it apart from eros and philia? It's the only love you *give* even though you get nothing in return. It's unconditional.

Where does that kind of love come from? Mothers!

Look at nature. Where does unconditional love ever come from? There's one source and one source only: Mothers.

Athana said...

You're right, Paxton. I'm going to make this change to the post:

BEFORE: Back then, they all had mothers who loved them unconditionally, so they knew exactly what that love looked, felt, and sounded like.

AFTER: Even if people had mothers so damaged by the war gods that they were unable to love unconditionally, the animal kingdom still provided models of unconditional Mother Love.

Paxton said...

Morgaine, you're right, and I'm sorry. I've been petty and now I will try to stay on topic =\

Anti-Thesisofreason said...

Man you don't know what motherly love is???
Didn't your mom kiss your boo, boo's when you were a kid??


Is my unconditional fatherly love toward my children considered motherly love?
If not is there a name for it too??

Keep up the good work.

Athana said...

anti-thesis, yes, if you love your children unconditionally, then you've done the hard work of achieving Mother Love. I think Mother Love is much more difficult for men to get to, because they don't possess (as far as we know) the positive affectional chemical and hormonal changes women go through during and after childbirth.

So more credit is due to men who reach Mother Love than to mothers who reach it.

Paxton said...

But affection is not love. A little girl who dresses up a puppy in ribbons and slippers and perfume, wraps it in a blanket, and carries it everywhere -- is not being loving, though she is being affectionate.

Morgaine said...

Paxton -

how does one show love without affection? Sacrifice? Most mothers consistently put the needs of their children ahead of their own. A mother risks her life to give birth to a child, then feeds it from her own body.

The descriptions you give of love elsewhere seem more like obligation to me, in my perception.

I'm so pleased to hear of your embrace of your children. Remember, men are not apart from the Goddess. You came from Her as we all did, and She's as much your Mother as anyone's. She's alive in you, too, so your gender doesn't exclude you from "Motherly love."

Paxton said...

I was just commenting on Athana's remark about the "affectional chemical". (I might have misunderstood that, but I thought she was saying that there is a chemical that makes mothers affectionate, and this is why they can easily obtain motherly love -- so I was pointing out the silliness of equating affection with love).

You are absolutely right about sacrifice.

Actually you are right about obligation too =D "Owe no one anything, except to love one another". (I don't remember what verse that is).

I didn't mean to say that affection is UNloving, just that affection does not equal love. (I am probably belaboring a fairly obvious point).

Athana said...

Paxton, by "affectional" I was referring to "affect," not affection. I can see how you were confused.