Feminine Principle

So matter is a living, feminine counterpart of the spiritual creator, a deity, and not something He produced and molded according to His will. 

Paracelsus contended that matter was a living counterpart of the creating deity.  He was a dualist in that respect, for he did not share the official dogmatic opinion that God created matter the way it is described in Genesis.  He believed that matter was uncreated. 

   These philosophers thought that in the beginning, when the spirit of God hovered over the abysmal prima materia, she was there too and was not created.  There were two things in the beginning: the male father spirit and the female matrix being; the chaotic matter, matter is in increatum, a not created but equivalent principle from the very beginning. 

To aspire to perfection is, as Jung has pointed out, more characteristic of the masculine Logos principle, while the feminine ideal is more that of completeness in which everything is simply held together in one unified whole.  Consequently, this feminine goddess all-Nature also possesses cunning, cruelty, wickedness, unfathomable depths of passion and the uncanny gloom of death, the smell of corpses and putrefaction in equal measure with the potentiality of new life and rebirth.  In practical reality every woman experiences the dark side of this power in herself when her erotic jealousy is aroused, when her children want to leave her, when she as a widow, abandoned, has to fight her own way alone through life.  Then the tigress in her surfaces, the whimpering bitch, the intrigue-spinning goddess of fate, and no woman can become conscious of her larger, greater self without having lived these aspects of the goddess within herself. 

Here is a principal mythological role of the feminine principle:  She gives birth to us physically, but She is the mother too of our second birth as spiritual entities.  This is the basic meaning of the motif of the virgin birth, that our bodies are born naturally, but at a certain time there awakens in us our spiritual nature, which is the higher human nature, not that which simply duplicates the world of the animal urges, or erotic and power drives and sleep.  Instead, there awakens in us the notion of a spiritual aim, a spiritual life: an essentially human, mystical life to be lived above the level of food, of sex, of economics, politics, and sociology.   In this sphere of the mystery dimension the woman represents the awakener, the giver of birth in that sense.  In these caves where the boys went to be initiated, to be transformed from the children of their physical mothers into the children of the cosmic Mother, in the womb of the Earth, they experienced symbolic rebirth.  G6