We continue to explore Mary Magdalene during this Eastertide. The woman who some name 'apostle to the apostles' is one of the more misunderstood and even maligned women in scripture. Sometimes linked with the sinful woman who anoints Jesus' feet (from Matthew 26:6-16, Mark 14:3-9, and Luke 7:36-50). Others believe she is the woman out of whom Jesus cast 7 demons (Mark 16:9). More modern scholars believe she was a woman of some wealth from the city of Magdala and that she has been confused with these other women in the Bible over the centuries.
You’ve read my interpretation of Mary of Magdala’s encounter with the Risen Jesus in the Garden and last time you explored your own thoughts and reactions using lectio divino.
This week, I invite you into a further exploration, using ‘visio divina’. Because of the many interpretations of who Mary is, there are multiple artistic interpretations of her. Using the images today and in the past 2 posts, and/or by doing a Google search for “Mary Magdalene”, find assorted images from art of Mary with or without Jesus. This website has many assorted images of Magdalene, too.
You'll notice a diversity of representations...Some images show her as a fallen woman, others in icon form with a red egg. Many images show the moment of recognition when Jesus says ‘do not touch me’. Others are more modern or even troubling. Some are by famous artists, others by relative unknown men and women. In a Google search you may also find images from movies of women portraying Mary.
Which ones speak to you?
Can you relate to Mary’s experience differently as you look at the pictures?
How are you affected by the facial expression, or body language, or drama of some of the images?
Who do you think Mary of Magdala is and what can she teach you?