Adornment: Veiling

Artist: Raffaelo Monti Date: c. 1860  Institution: Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Artist: Raffaelo Monti Date: c. 1860
Institution: Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Veiling is truly a bit of a taboo topic these days. I have reached a point, Beautiful Ones, a point at which I can no longer ignore the topic. In my personal spiritual life veiling has been presented by numerous, different entities. I must admit to myself that each time I am presented with it, I feel a strong attraction to the practice.
You see, Beautiful Ones, I feel that there are very few distinctly feminine symbols left in the world that leave zero doubt that the Divine Feminine is present and being fully expressed in the bearer of that symbol. One is the Saree. The other is the veil. I am not going to touch on the Saree in this writing. I want to focus on the veil as symbol of the Sacred Feminine.
It is odd to encounter the veil in our culture. I must admit that even though I am attracted to it’s beauty and long to be brave enough to wear it everywhere, I am also repulsed. I am repulsed because , in modern times , the practice is closely tied to fundamentalist Islam (read here “enforced shaming and hiding due to being born a woman) and a one -off encounter with a black muslim who was blatantly rude in response to my curiousity. I’m white. That’s another tale and only serves to be mentioned here to say that I have strong emotional reactions, both good and bad, to the concept of veiling.
I know some nuns still do it. Again, cultural shaming surrounding being a woman. It is, Beautiful Ones, a sad reminder to me that the men in our world are bothered by our glory and so we must hide ourselves.
So, when deity has said to me, “here, consider the veil”. I have replied ” No, thanks. I’m good”.
One very good test or discernment of Divine Will is the Repitiion of a theme. Veiling has been a repeated theme since I was around five or six and I experienced fantasy and play surrounding the idea of enforced marriage. I would get out my mother’s golden sheers that no longer adorned our living room windows and would cover myself in it, pretending to be led to my unwanted wedding. I was five or six. Bear with me.
Over the years it has reappeared often enough to finally come under serious scrutiny and consideration.
I want to start with the symbolism of veiling. It is Mystery. Feminine power is the creative principle. It is sacred and holy and the most powerful force in the Universe. Women carry this creative principle within us. Our bodies knit together new lives and feed them after we birth them. The veil shields this. It is both sign and protection.
The veil is not truly a symbol of forced hiding. It is a sign of power.
Just as deity might create a veil between us and Them to protect us from Their powerful, so , too, might women consider veiling to shield and protect men from Our Powerful Essence. It is mighty. It has strength.
Our hair is a glorious symbol of our power. The veil shields that most powerful part of us from the miasma, pollution, of the mundane world. It sets us apart as sacred and fully in touch with our Divine feminine.
I have not settled my mind to this oft repeated request from the Divine. It has appeared often enough that I must consider it now. It has appeared in the context of both evangelical and Catholic Christian explorations, Hindu explorations, Buddhist, Lokean, and now Greek. There have been times when I have not been particularly engaged in spiritual studies when the idea has come. Those previously mentioned explorations are not the only ones. For brevity I will leave it at those few.
Facing the world in a veil in day-to-day life is another thing entirely, Beautiful Ones, than meditating on it or fantasizing about it. I fantasize about it a great deal. Going to the grocery in one? Well, it has not happened yet.
I hope to share my insights and decision process in considering veiling in the future as part of the practice of Adornment. It will not be an easy decision. I am very nervous about the possible reactions. Will people stare like they do when one of our few local Muslim women are in the grocery? Will I be able to keep my head high under that scrutiny? Will things go well in yoga should I choose to keep my veil on during yoga? Is it even a good idea to veil during yoga? These questions and more have kept me avoiding the issue for many, many years despite a very real urge within my soul and spirit to take the veil.  My lifetime of avoidance is testament to a very real struggle..
Beautiful Ones, I do not want anyone to feel that I am saying to them that veiling is a must. Veiling is not an easy or required practice  I am not. Veiling is a very personal choice in this culture and in this day. Wearing a veil on your head can draw undo attention. I cannot bring myself to do it outside my home or outside the context of ritual. It will not be an easy decision. Below I have included a link to a blog article on the topic of veiling. It is a two-part entry , but well worth the time and energy spent to read another’s perspective on veiling. It has helped me move closer to the implementation to know their are others engaging in the practice.

I hope to share more posts in the coming weeks that cover more of the symbolism in relation to my Goddess Thetis, who is a goddess associated with the veil. Colors, materials, and even length may be symbolic of certain aspects of a divine entity’s being and lessons or Mysteries.


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