Mary Magdalene disappears from the Bible after her appearance at the crucifixion and resurrection in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. What happened to Mary Magdalene is a mystery.

St. Paul’s epistles and the Acts of the Apostles are the earliest Christian documents we have. And yet, missing from these documents is Mary Magdalene: the woman who may have been Jesus’ wife and even the Apostle of the Apostles.

St. Paul says nothing about Mary Magdalene; and he makes no mention of Mother Mary either. According to Paul, the first person to see the risen Christ is Peter; but that is neither attested nor confirmed by any other gospel.

The Mysteries

The mysteries of the ancient world were religious practises, rituals and beliefs that were kept fiercely guarded. They were known only to those who had been initiated.

Isis and Osiris of Egypt were at the heart of the great pagan mystery. At the heart of this mystery was the story of life and death followed by a rebirth.

The myths were well-known among the general population. However, the inner experience–the one undergone by their initiates–remained a mystery. The Mother Goddess aspect was the essential life force in this ancient myth and mystery of life, death and rebirth.

The fundamental experience of these mysteries–which ritually enacted death–were illusionary. By submitting him or herself to death, the initiate was freed from the idea of life and death as opposites. Enlightenment was thus the process whereby one entered into union with the great mystery of Creation.

The initiates had forgotten or lost this knowledge, but it was brought back to them by the rituals of the mysteries. The myth and the mystery continues to retain its original power. Scholars, laymen and even storytellers want to know if Jesus and Mary Magdalene were lovers, were married and had children.

It seems that the Great Mystery lives on.

Artwork by El Greco

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