Updated: Jan 14, 2022
I love the story of Vasilisa, it is a Russian fairytale. Vasilisa is given a doll by her mother right before she passes aways. Her father remarries. The woman he marries has two daughters and constantly mistreats Vasilisa. Sound familiar? In a plan to get rid of Vasilisa her step-mother sends her through the woods to fetch fire from BaBa Yaga assuming that she won’t make it back alive.
Baba Yaga is a Russian witch/healer. I am enchanted by Baba Yaga. She lives in a hut that stands on chicken legs. She is often pictured as deformed, which can teach us to tend to our own shadow self. A teacher of the life/death/life cycle, she holds the burning skull which sees through all and burns the wasted and false cinder. Where Baba Yaga lives the bones of the dead still speak, and there are winds, the sun, moon, and the sky that all live in her trunk. She keeps the order, of day following night, season following season. She is rhyme and reason.She teaches us that we are life/death/life, that this is our cycle, this is our insight into the feminine. She is said to put “soul fire” into our ideas, our own lives and the lives we touch. She is also know as the la Que Sabe; the Wild Mother God.
I believe that the feminine carries this power and that as women we get to experience this life/death/life cycle through our own life’s blood during our menstrual cycles. Even after we get to an age where we stop bleeding we still live in this cycle.(I believe men have a cycle of their own but without a physical sign it often goes unnoticed.) It is integrated into our very being and connected to our knowing. Most of us don’t consciously move with the cycles of the seasons. So many of us have forgotten our own “soul fire” so we don’t have it, not only to offer to others, but we don’t even have it for ourselves. I think it’s time to call in Baba Yaga and have her teach us what we have forgotten. Show us, what is in the shadows. Help us, the ones who have forgotten about the life/death/life cycle to not be afraid of death. Teach us how to hear the bones of the ancestors speaking to us. Show us what needs to be burned away and what still has magic in it.