Dragon mythology as Goddess wisdom
Are you dreaming of Dragons?
Are the Dragon lines that snake through this land calling to you? Is the Dragon of the singing power points where these ancient energy currents cross and unite, alive in your body and remembering?
If we allow ourselves to imagine dragons, what feelings arise within us? Are we drawn to the mystical, elemental power or afraid of the wild and often destructive force these beings seem to embody?
There certainly is an enduring attraction to these mythical beings, as the popular allure of the dragon queen in the series ‘Games of Thrones’ as well as the success of films like ‘Dragon Heart’ and ‘Pete’s Dragon’ attests.
She is awakening and asking for our attention.
Rhiannon’s animals around Her wheel include songbirds, swifts and swallows in the North, Snakes in the East, Dolphins in the South, Horses in the West and butterflies in the Centre. Dragon is Her hidden secret form of Beneath and Above. She is awakening and asking for our attention.
Often marked by our ancestors, sometimes carved in the chalk as Rhiannon’s horse/dragon (as in the late Bronze Age at Uffington), or with standing stones or circles on their ancient Celtic land, elemental awareness is now rising again of the gateway keeper energy Dragon holds in our initiation journey through life as human beings.
She shines above us in the night, guiding all in the Northern hemisphere as great circumpolar Draco, one of the largest constellations in the sky. Alpha Draconis, the brightest star, is traditionally called Etamin, from the Arabic At-Tinnin, which means ‘the great serpent’. α Draconis was the northern pole star from 3942 BCE, until 1793 BCE. The Egyptian Pyramids were designed to have one side facing north, with an entrance passage geometrically aligned so that this dragon star would be visible at night. Due to the effects of precession, it will again be the pole star around the year CE 21000. She changes everything She touches.
Dragon to me, also appears to be a Crone aspect of the Goddess.
As expression of Great Source Goddess of the Void, timeless and yet spinning time, Creatrix of all becoming and all ending, who is also the Great Initiatrix. Within our female body the dance of the creatrix-destroyer Goddess echoes in our moon cycle, guiding us to become wise in Her ways of life, death and rebirth. Is this why Dragons take maidens and leaves youths to seek and find her? What if Dragon is Goddess asking to awaken in our being, asking to be remembered for who She really is?
In many stories from across the European continent, this initiation wisdom can be found. In the tales, Dragon is an unstoppable force, often resting in or on mountains, but sometimes also in the depth of great lakes or the sea. As a reminder of primordial mysteries, She ‘takes’ the Maiden, the young feminine, into her cave of initiation.
If fear is what rules the feminine
She will be trapped and enslaved, usually until her disowned anger rises and the feminine can be ridden by the dragon power, which means it manifests as the destructive rage and ‘justified righteous anger’ of the feminine, which attacks and creates fear based separation. This distortion of Dragon power is deeply wounding to life, to the feminine self and to the masculine.
If love is prevalent however, courageous self exploration and a deep shadow hunt will bring transformation, and the maiden will learn to stand in the Dragon’s breath, an egoic death journey, which will lead to her becoming, or recognising within her, the dragon power, the Goddess.
For the masculine, the dragon quest holds the journey of the seeking of the feminine and the true merging with her.
If he has learned to be a dragon slayer, he will seek to rescue, control or own the feminine. Thus he will never win the power of the dragon maiden. Instead, seeking to destroy the Dragon, he will embody patriarchy and ultimately continue the cycle of wounding and rage. In attempting to overpower the Dragon of the wild feminine, he will be killed by the furry of the flame, burned by the dragon, and this will perpetuate his fear, hatred and his need to slay, to be the victor. He too needs the courage found in love to face the Dragon, (which is, after all, also the wild aspect of his own Divine inner feminine) to stand in the Dragon’s breath and initiate into the homecoming of Her loving mysteries.
Here in Britannia’s lands, Dragon myth hides in folk tales and local legends; Dragon ridges on the mountains, dragon breath lying as the mist over the land, the Arthurian legends of the Pendragon people (meaning: ‘of the Dragon’), who loved Goddess and knew the secret ways to Avalon, who held the true meaning of ‘kingship’. It is the forgetting of this that lead to the need for a grail quest in the Arthurian legends, and it is the remembering that brings wholeness and healing. If we remember what the Pendragon Clan knew, that the land is Dragon/Goddess, and that we are of Her, inseparable part of Her. That She is within every woman and every man and that to slay Her is to kill our connection to source, and to our empowerment.
If we examine Dragon myth and power
We find that, like the snake demonised in the Garden of Eden story, Dragon (as Goddess) is misrepresented in Western consciousness. Often shown as a raging, seemingly vengeful power that takes and destroys, keeping people hiding in fear or making desperate sacrifices to appease an unsatisfiable force of evil.
Unlike other cultures where the beliefs systems and folk traditions allow a very different kind of relationship, in Europe we seem to have forgotten the symbolism of initiation and gateway into the mysteries that Dragon represents.
Dragons like snakes have been vilified
It is interesting that dragons, like snakes, have been vilified by patriarchal religions in particular: Hellenistic Greek Hercules killing Landon, the great Dragon guardian of the apples of the Hesperides (of the Goddess wisdom-ways fruit), Sigurd/Siegfried the dragon killer of Norse Mythology who bathes in Dragon blood to become invulnerable, or Christianity’s St. George slaying the dragon (Goddess) of England. Patriarchy has been very successful at creating a fear based nightmarish image of, and relationship with, ‘Dragon’.
It is no accident than that the Goddess of Love and sacred sexuality is linked to Dragon in this land; as true tantric practises teach how we may learn to be dragon riders again. Dragon, as the manifested twin kundalini serpents of sacred sexuality, which combine, rise in harmony, and fly up through the crown on the opening wings of consciousness, embodies the integration of inner masculine and feminine.
I would like to offer you this integration which is an initiation gateway of merging with the Divine essence while staying fully in the body. This is a practice which is life affirming and powerfully transformational, leading to greater aliveness, compassion and clarity.
If you’d like to explore How to become a Dragon Rider, I offer a 10 month long course. There are some taster evenings coming up too, you can read more here
Magdalene Mystery School
If you feel drawn to work more with Goddess Archetypes as ways of initiation into healthy maturation and gateways of greater authenticity and sacred sexuality, please check out the Magdalene Mystery School Priestess of Rhiannon training and other workshops here