It’s always exciting when a series starts to happen. Last fall, as I was pondering the energies of the September Equinox of 2022, I was guided towards painting Mary Magdalene. Full of watery energy, her message was one of peace and transcendence.

“…Surrender to the flow of life and you will realize that your own heartbeat is the drum that sets the pace, the rhythm that sets it all in motion. Allow your heart to dictate the rhythm of your life…” (you can read her full message here: Mary Magdalene of the Sea.)

Visionary art painting "Mary Magdalene of the Sea"

Now, half a year later, Mary Magdalene has returned.

As I was preparing to create a new video about the energies of the upcoming March 2023 Equinox, I got this feeling like: “it’s time to do a painting and that will really help with this message.” And the first thing I was shown when I felt into it was Mary Magdalene coming forward. Clearly, I would be painting Mary Magdalene again.

So here she is—Mary Magdalene: Shakti Power! 

Spiritual art by Ona Martin: Mary Magdalene

But let me tell you the story of how she evolved, because it involves a bit of transmutation: the very way she emerged onto the canvas mirrors her message.

Behind the Scenes: Painting Mary Magdalene

When I tuned into Mary Magdalene with these March Equinox energies, the first image of her to appear in my mind was very pure white. But the first vision of a painting doesn’t always translate 100% when you start getting into the physicality of it. As I started to paint and actually physically get the paint on the canvas, it became clear right away that the image I was working on would look quite different from the image of Mary that first came into my mind’s eye.

First of all, I was directed to use a canvas that had been used before.

It wasn’t even a piece of art. It was just a canvas I had used to create signage for a holistic fair a few years back. I’d recently found it while cleaning out my dad’s basement. But it was the perfect size for the project and it was taking up space where it wasn’t wanted. So it felt like the perfect opportunity.

Transmute a piece of clutter into something beautiful? Score!

But the fact that it was not a virginal white piece of canvas very much influenced the process and the painting itself. To begin, I had to put layers and layers of paint over it to obscure the lettering. It quickly became clear that the pure white I had originally seen was not where this one needed to start. I needed to cover it up with something dark.

I found myself strongly drawn to the color red. I ended up covering the entire canvas with a glowing layer of red, from scarlet to deep vermillion.

But alas, the red proved to be quite transparent. Those pesky letters still showed through!

Only one thing would obliterate the stubborn markings, and that was black. I squeezed a liberal dollop of black paint on the palette and went to it, the old Rolling Stones tune Paint it Black playing in my mind.

Not quite how I had imagined starting this painting, but now finally I had something I could work with!

I tuned back into Mary Magdalene. Her presence was still there, reassuring and calm. “Go ahead,” she seemed to say. So I did.

Now that the layer of black was down, I could start layering back over. Again, I was drawn to the color red, and then black, and all these reds and blacks were coming in strong, creating flickering flames across the face of the canvas.

These are not colors I usually use. I began to wonder if I was being led in the wrong direction. But Mary’s presence never left me. And I began to be shown that the white image that I had seen at first may be one that I paint in the future, but the red and the black had to come through first. She had to come through the darkness. So significant, as we shall see.

Painting the Shakti Power

As I was painting Mary Magdalene, my attention was directed towards certain things. One of the first of them was the Adi Shakti mantra, which is a mantra of devotion and surrender to the Divine Feminine, the Great Mother Power:

Adi Shakti, Adi Shakti, Adi Shakti, Namo Namo
Sarab Shakti, Sarab Shakti, Sarab Shakti, Namo Namo
Pritham Bhagvati, Pritham Bhagvati, Pritham Bhagvati, Namo Namo
Kundalini Mata Shakti, Mata Shakti, Namo Namo

It translates roughly to:

I bow to (or call on) the primal power.
I bow to (or call on) the all encompassing power and energy.
I bow to (or call on) that through which God creates.
I bow to (or call on) the creative power of the Kundalini, the Divine Mother Power.

So the next layer atop the flames became a visual chant: the words to the Adi Shakti mantra repeated again and again, creating a pattern of energy on the surface of the canvas.

And then, I was called to paint Mary Magdalene herself.

She came in in this rather iconic style with these beautiful big eyes and her forehead glowing. And of course the third eye is a powerful manifesting chakra. I consider it a feminine chakra along with the heart and the sacral. I’ve written another post about the chakras and the creative process, but for now it’s enough to note that Mary Magdalene symbolizes the harmonizing of the third eye and sacral chakras through the heart. With the heart guiding the process, creation aligns with Universal Consciousness, miscreation is averted, and one is assured a beautiful outcome. 

Three progressive images taken while painting Mary Magdalene of the Shakti Power

After her face had appeared, I was looking at her and saw that there was a mudra (sacred hand gesture) that she wanted to bring forward. In my mind’s eye I saw her templed fingers and then the word “Shakti” sounded in my mind. So I looked up “Shakti mudra” and found that it did indeed exist, except it wasn’t the index fingers pointing upwards as I was expecting, it was the ring and pinky fingers, with the first two fingers curled over the thumbs of both hands.


This mudra is used to bring in the divine mother energy, the Shakti. Holding the Shakti mudra for 30 minutes a day (either all at once or in 10 minute blocks of time) is said to help reduce anxiety, improve sleep, and stabilize the physical and mental bodies, promoting a strong constitution in mind and body.

If you read my March 2023 energy update, you will remember that we are receiving a huge wave of Divine Feminine (Shakti) energy at this time. So right off the bat, Mary Magdalene is showing us some practices that we can use to assist in proactively calling in this energy and integrating it in positive ways.

Purifying the Feminine Power

I’ve been sitting with Mary Magdalene a lot as I’ve painted her image. And there are a few things she’s been leading me to look at.

We are at this time experiencing a cleansing by and of the Divine Feminine creative power of the universe. The energies being stirred up right now vibrate very strongly with the energy of menstruation and the after birth: purgings of the female body on the very deep physical level.

These purgings are not seen in a very positive light in our culture. But they are an important part of the creation of new human life.  Before a new life can take hold in the womb, the womb needs to be cleared and cleansed. Only after the purification of menstruation is over does ovulation and the rebuilding of the uterine lining take place, and conception becomes possible.  And then after the birth also we have another clearing and cleansing when the placenta, or afterbirth, is expelled from the womb. In both instances, the tissue that is shed was once supportive of creating new life, but now needs to be discarded. Only through this can the cycle of life begin again.

Why is this coming forward now? What I’m getting is that part of what’s happening with the Divine Mother energies coming in so strongly at this time is a clearing and purging of any energies and beliefs of shame—especially around the body, being physical, and/or the feminine side of being. This goes way, way back to First Man and First Woman. There’s a lot of religious programming that has placed a lot of shame around the feminine, and a lot of shame around the body, which corresponds to the feminine. So many of us (both men and women) have deeply ingrained feelings of shame around being embodied, as well as around womanhood and being female, and also motherhood. These are feelings that the collective is reacting to and processing very deeply right now.

The Sacred Power of Menstruation

As I was painting Mary Magdalene, she was really working with me to understand some of these things at a deeper level. She called my attention to menstruation in particular. I was guided to look into the process of menstruation. And I learned some interesting things.

One is that humans are one of very, very few species that menstruates. Most animals don’t. And of the ones that do, humans are the only ones that menstruate heavily.

So there’s something about humanity that requires this periodic purging of the feminine reproductive system.

Because we are genetically different from other animals. We’re spiritually different in very profound ways. Our creative powers certainly eclipse those of any other animal on this planet. So it’s no wonder our reproductive system would reflect that kind of activity in some way.

When I started researching menstruation, I’m finding that right now the human collective, at least in the West, is harboring a lot of negative feelings around the fetus. Specifically, there’s a very prevalent feeling right now of the fetus or the embryo being a parasite on the mother.

The reason we menstruate so heavily is that we have to build a very thick uterine wall because a human embryo will burrow very, very deeply into the placenta. Much more deeply than most animals. The human embryo really digs in, and so we have to build this extra thick layer in order to support it.

What Mary Magdalene is showing me here is that we have to be very, very conscious of how we frame things and how we look at things. 

There are different ways that we can frame things and we can look at them from different polarities. We can look at things from the point of view of the lower chakras. In which case we’re going to see everything as a power play, pitting us against everyone else. And when we do that, we’re going to react in one of three ways: 1) we’re going to take the “best defense is a good offense” approach and want to dominate everything and everybody; 2) we’re going to get defensive and either run away or if we can’t do that, react in aggressive ways out of fear; or 3) we’re going to play the victim.

What Mary Magdalene shows us is that we can choose to look at things from the perspective of Christ consciousness, from the heart. This is a love-based perspective and it’s generally going to result in more connection and more Love (which is basically the life force).

So when we look at this understanding of the fetus as a threat or a parasite, which perspective do you think this is coming from? The heart, or the lower energy centers?

It’s Time To Release Shame

Whether you’re a man or a woman, we can tune into the divine feminine energies within us and choose to look at things with a life-affirming viewpoint. And if you do that, looking at the fetus within the womb, you will see that the human embryo is something very different and very special. It needs more nourishment at some level from the mother.

There’s a great need in the human psyche to be loved, and it starts at the spiritual level as a deep connection with the mother. We need more mothering. The reason I feel on the spiritual level that the embryo digs in so deep to the uterus is because of this deep, deep need for extra mother love on the part of the human spirit. We need that divine mother. We need to feel deeply, deeply connected and held by our Divine Mother.

Because ultimately the embryo and then the fetus, is symbolic of the self. A self that has lost its connection with the Mother is going to feel unloved. And it’s going to develop a feminine side that feels unloved and unprotected, and which acts from the lower energy centers rather than the heart.

Nearly every one of us has lost connection with the Divine Mother. But not all is lost, because we can choose to heal that connection. We do this by coming back to the heart, the seat of compassion.

And so you can look at the need to build up a, a bigger, thicker layer of uterine tissue as a protective mechanism, protecting us against this parasite. Or you could look at it as, our mother energy has to be very, very fully developed and activated, and we have to go above and beyond to hold and to contain and to provide for the spark of life that wants to come forward.

I’m speaking here about a physically embodied female, but this also goes for our divine feminine selves no matter what gender or sex preference or whatever you have. We all have a divine mother within us. This part of our psychic being.

And so what painting Mary Magdalene is helping me to realize is that there are very, very deep levels of shame and fear around being embodied right now, around being part of the physical world. And I think this goes back to the story of the fall.

Virtually every religion has some sort of story of the fall connected with humans being on the planet. What Mary Magdalene is showing me is that in order to be here on this level, we had to come down spiritually to a lower vibration from where we came from.

And what she’s telling me is that we need to release all shame around this.

Because humans as a species are this bridge between the spiritual and the physical. That’s why the most powerful thing you can do as an awakened human being is to come into the heart, to maintain that heart coherence. The heart is a bridge between the spiritual energy centers and the material energy centers. And when we hold ourselves in the heart energy. That’s when we can successfully integrate all of this.

Becoming One with the Mother

But the key is, you have to include YOURSELF in that circle of love you hold in your heart. You have to fully, unconditionally learn to love every aspect of yourself, even the parts of you you’re ashamed of, even the deepest shadow aspects, even the part of you that wants to take you down, the part of you that wants to take everything down, you have to love and accept THAT part of you even as you learn to say no to it. You have to say NO to it with LOVE and not be afraid of it any more.

And what she’s saying here with this beautiful gesture is that we can move through this with grace and with ease when we allow ourselves to open and to receive and to allow these incredibly powerful divine, feminine, divine mother energies to flow through us without shame or guilt and allow her to purify our psyches, to purify our bodies at this time. And to come into a deep sense of gratitude and of appreciation of our physical bodies, of the physical earth around us, of all creation.

And we can ask for that. It’s called Grace, and we can ask, through the Divine Mother, through the Shakti power, to come into a state of Grace.

This is going to help us through whatever purging or destructive energies may be happening on the earth right now. To understand them as a natural clearing out of things that had been supportive of the old structure. And to start focusing our attention on the new structures, the new cycle we are entering, with our Divine Mother power intact, so we can nurture them as they unfold.

And these new energies we are calling in, they are beautiful.