Ha. Very funny, Ess.
the feminist ideal within the west... could it have stemmed from a predominately male ordained religion??
There is a feminist ideal? Feminists are notoriously torn (and quite heatedly) over the portrayals of women in society. That’s why there are 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th? waves of ideals in the brew and I wish I could keep up, but I’m not able to any more. Last I heard: The ideal woman is one who rejects society’s ideals?? Sounds a lot like “Let’s all get in a circle and kick each other,” to me.
My female perspective is that the Madonna icon was formulated by the church as a counter attack on contemporary feminine ideals during 12th century reformation.
It’s No coincidence that the Cult of the Virgin Mary sprang up about the same time that the Cult of Courtly Love was gaining widespread “troubadourious” followers.
The church promoted Mary to a model adult female icon for very specific purposes, believing courtly traditions to be heretical. The catholic worship of Mary is/was decided “ex cathedra” by the Pope, which means by his authority & “infallible decisioning,” she is divined—below God but above all humans (excluding the Pope). Her symbolism is very much under the control of a patriarchal system of beliefs, and by what could be a more powerful pop-culture icon? Yall decide.
Not feminist but feminine
and again as it nurtured the ideals of chivalry etc
which I think may still influence views today.
For me, the Virgin Mary doesn’t win the daily double on chivalry.
It’s Eleanor D’Aquitaine, my dear Gent, and E D’A deserves her own acknowledgment, imo.
I believe her influence on the courts and chivalry is why the church needed to Madonna up.
Different cults, courts, messages, loves, entirely. Agape vs. Courtly Love, or romantic love.
Mary’s simplest role in Christianity is enough for me to be amazed. And I will remain amazed by the continued grace while we seek/hash/suffer & hack out what we feel are the best/worst examples of who or what we should be as women, as long as we’re free to make our own choices. It’s just very difficult to do so in an iconically dependent society, so I wonder if all wouldn’t be better off with the pedestals removed, if anyone really feels there are any.