Proserpine (Persephone), by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, 1874
Proserpine (Persephone), by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, 1874

Sometimes it’s good to shake up stuck notions, when they get so calcified they become toxic.

That’s when we need to ‘go all Hafiz‘, and turn it upside down to shake the nonsense out and reveal the original Wisdom of it.

If you’ve done this segment of the Persephone Journey, Pluto Transit, Dark Night shake-awake, or the equivalent, and thus have the Underworld stamp (or several of them) on your Life Passport, you’ll recognize the gravitas-wit in these perspectives from fellow journeyers.

First, since this is a Freyja Day musing, I feel like it’s fair to mention the likelihood that the word ‘Hell’ comes from the Norse Goddess of the Underworld, called Hel by those ancestors.

The Underworld-initiated Persephone and Inanna’s sister, Ereshkigal, would be kindred mythological expressions of this ‘(potentially) initiatory realm’ and facet of human spirit and experience. It’s transformative, and that tends to shape a certain tone-of-voice, humor, and insight.

My friend Jodi shared the Bitter Southerner interview from which this comes:

The Return of Persephone, by Frederic, Lord Leighton (1891)
The Return of Persephone, by Frederic, Lord Leighton (1891)

“Don’t confuse religiosity with spirituality,” he tells me. “The two are clearly fucking different things. A friend of mine says that religion is for people who are afraid of hell and spirituality is for people who have been to hell.”

~ The Musician, Songwriter, and Hell survivor, Jon Dee Graham in an interview for “A Man of Few Words,” by Chuck Reece.

Which brought to mind a Hel-snippet from Ray LaMontagne’s song, Empty:

“Well I looked my demon in the eyes, said Do your best, destroy me. You see, I’ve been to hell and back so many times, I must admit you kind of bore me.”

Mmm-hmm. I could also share a string from Goethe’s poem, The Holy Longing, but this seems hella’nough for now.

As Persephone Journeyers know, sometimes Hel’s the earthy soil from which gravitas and Wisdom grow, not to mention a certain gallows humor.

Big Love,