The New Testament of Mary

This post is about a book.

“The Testament of Mary”, by Colm To’bi’n.

(the punctuation marks should be directly over the letter o and i — I do the best I can on my  Mac keyboard)

I normally have a number of books that I am reading at any one time.  A kind of rotation.

Mainly, nonfiction, poetry, fairy tales, and some fiction.  I find true stories and biographies more compelling than other genres.

I purchased this book well over a year ago after hearing Terry Gross interview the author.

To’bi’n’s portrait casts a spell.

In a strict, unsparing narrative of 81 pages, he presents her as a solitary older woman seeking to understand the events surrounding and after the crucifixion.  In a latter life stage individuation task, she judges herself and others harshly.

From the cover note:

“This woman whom we know from centuries of paintings and scripture as docile, loving, silent, long-suffering, obedient, worshipful mother of Christ becomes a tragic heroine with the relentless eloquence of Electra or Medea or Antigone.”

I found this self-effacing study of the human Mary to be gripping, enigmatic, and a testament to Self Honesty.  Toward the end,  Mary shares dream material, which demonstrates the veracity of the Dream and how the Dream brings Truth.

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I first saw this Pieta at the De Young Museum in San Francisco.

Massive in size and impact.

And as I read The Testament of Mary, the painting returned to me,

again and again and again.

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Vox Anima,  SDM

Art Credit:  Adolphe William Bouguereau, Pieta  1876

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