Journey of the Black Madonna
and the mystery of the sacred
May 5 – 15, 2023 • Occitane, France
The Black Madonna is the ancient Earth goddess. She is Isis. She is the Magdalene. And she is the sacred feminine. Join us in the south of France for a deepening in the mysteries of the sacred as we create ceremony in caves, sacred waters and cathedrals dedicated to the Black Madonna, remembering the divine within!
Below are some of the sites where we will do ceremony, initiations and activations.
The journey begins in Toulouse, where so many pilgrims embark on the Camino Santiago de Compostela. The energy of those who have traveled this route for centuries will guide us on our way as we head to the Languedoc region with the rocky Mediterranean hills, limestone formations, caves and fertile coastal plains in the foothills of the Pyrenees.
Our home-base for the journey will be within Carcassonne, a restored fortified medieval town that dates back to the Gallo-Roman period. In the 12th century it was the refuge for the Cathars, an order who held to the belief that the Magdalene was the beloved of Jesus. One can sense the dedication to one’s path and the courage of both the Cathars and those who gave them protection. It is a place of inspiration to renew our commitment to our soul’s calling.
BASILICA OF ST. NAZAIRE
Beautiful stained glass rose window in the basilica of St. Nazaire within the citadel, the sacred geometry and color illuminating the church, symbolizing the light of the divine within. We will visit both the basilica and the Chateau Comtal within the citadel as we attune to the spirit of liberation in the Languedoc.
PAINTED CAVES OF NIAUX
Black Madonnas of the earth-based traditions were found close to caves, representing the womb of Mother Earth. The earliest cave paintings in France show representations of pregnant women and fertility symbols. We will visit the Cave Paintings of Niaux, one of the most decorated prehistoric sites where you are yet able to connect with over 2 kilometers of more than 70 actual paintings (not replicas).
RENNES LE CHATEAUX
The village church at Rennes les Chateaux is dedicated to Mary Magdalene. During our visit in 2014, we made an offering to the Magdalene at the base of the tower, where upon a rainbow and three eagles appeared! The Magdalene awaits all who come with an open heart. A carving on the altar depicts the Magdalene with a skull at her feet.
Nestled in the countryside of the Languedoc region is the spectacular Gorges de Galamus. The scenic drive leads to a wooded trail taking us down the ravine to the sacred spring of the Goddess, in the Magdalene Grotto that is within the hermitage build in the cliffside. Water drips from the ceiling and walls of the grotto gathering in a pool in the front of the cave. There is a peaceful energy that echoes the song of the Magdalene for those with ears to hear.
MONTSEGUR AND PYRENEES
The towering Pyrenees cut across southwest France from the Mediterranean to the Atlantic, encompassing the craggy citadel of Montsegur, a Cathar stronghold. Legend says that Hercules fell in love with Pyrene, daughter of Atlas. Her love was unrequited however. In his grief over her death, he hammered his club on the earth, giving rise to the Pyrenees Mountains and joining the Mediterranean Sea with Atlantis.
BLACK MADONNA AT MONTSEGUR
In the Middle Ages when the majority of the Black Madonna statues were created there was still a strong undercurrent and mingling of the old ways. Legends speak of the union of Mary Magdalene and Yeshua and the child she bore. It is said she traveled to the south of France to keep their child and the teachings safe. The Black Madonnas representing the goddess of fertility and childbirth came to be associated with the Magdalene as it is likely she was a black woman from Egypt and a priestess of Isis, who initiated Christ in the process of ascension through the light body.
Alet le Bains
In the pools of Alet le Bains we’ll do ceremony to honor the sacred waters of the Mother. The waters have a very high vibration with both cold and hot mineral springs. Experience the healing waters in nature or at one of the spas.
We’ll take a leisure day in Narbonne, a Mediterranean port that is end of the Canal du Midi. Elegant architecture, cobbled streets and exceptional Fruits de Mer!
Queribus, situated like an eagle’s nest on the precipice of a rocky mount in the foothills of the Pyrenees, is one of the most inspiring sites of the Cathars, a testimony to those who held the gnostic wisdom of the divine within.
Nestled in the hillside below Queribus is the idyllic village of Cucugnan, where we will enjoy lunch following our ceremony. Omer’s Windmill, a landmark of the village adds to the simple charm of this Languedoc town.
MUSEE d’ART MODERN
In Ceret we will visit the Musee d’Art Modern, which has numerous paintings by Picasso, Chagall, Matisse, Herbin, Soutine and other Favs and Impressionist works. Creativity is most certainly an aspect of the sacred feminine. Ceret continues to be a place for artists and poets and will inspire us to get in touch with our own creative expression.
On day 9 we circle back to Toulouse, where we began. At the bascillica of St. Sernin, a UNESCO World Heritage Sites of the Routes of Santiago de Compostela, where we will have our closing ceremony. Having had a sacred journey of our own, we will join in celebration of the Mysteries of the Black Madonna at this very special pilgrimage place. Interestingly, St. Sernin has 17 pentagonal chapels, symbolizing spiritual perfection.
Our last day is a free day to enjoy the inspiration and beauty of Cordes-Sur-Ciel, followed by our gratitude dinner to celebrate the Black Madonna!
$2900 before 12/31/19. Price in 2020 – $3200.
10 day journey, includes lodging, transportation for all excursions, admissions, all ceremonies and teachings. Welcome Dinner and Gratitude Dinner included, other meals are on your own. Does not include airfare. Lodging based on double occupancy. Single occupancy available at extra charge.
Capacity for 15 people. Reserve your space with $1000 deposit.
Our gift to you:
In gratitude to you for answering the call to be part of the Black Madonna journey, you will receive this book, “A Mystic’s journey to the sacred sites of France” by Raylene Abbott.