Of all the months in the year, this one belongs to Mary and the archetype of the divine mother—and that’s exactly what our our country and our planet needs right now. I always feel both Mary Mother and Mary of Magdalene are more misunderstood than any other abiding symbol in our culture. Rather than “whore” or “virgin,” the two represent a beautifully still and compassionate energy: wise, receptive, and regenerative. As a friend reminded me recently, May is another name for the Mother Goddess, Maia or Maya; in Northern Europe she was called Maj or Mai, the Maiden. And today, May Day–or Beltrane, as it is sometimes known–is the Celtic festival of fertility. This is when transformational powers are released, allowing us to break free of old patterns and renew our commitment with the earth and the deepest parts of ourselves. Now is when we should take off our shoes and wiggle our feet in the soil. Or just go outside and breathe as deeply and quietly as possible. Don’t make a wish, don’t set goals, don’t try to will anything into being. Just be willing. Just be. Breathe in that amazing beauty all around us. Tap into the big, peony-scented energy. Back in that radical receptivity and rose-scented love. It’ll take you all the way to May 31st—which, no joke, is the Feast of St. Mary.