Goddess Ta'Nit were discovered in 1973-74,
during a marine-archaeology expedition
of Phoenician shipwrecks. They date
from the 7 to 5th centuries B.C.E.
That is sooo cool!
The Phoenicicans were great mariners
and traders, visiting trading
cultures throughout the Mediterranean
and even in the Americas.
They are said to have had a
bright and flourishing culture.
Ta'Nit was the Phoenician's name for the
Great Goddess, the Feminine aspect
of the Divine. Seafarers would carve
the symbol of Ta'Nit into the rock
in their gratitude for a safe arrival.
Ta'Nit is associated with the Great
Goddess by her names Asherah, Nix,
Anat, and Elat -- different words
representing different cultures and
languages. One DIvine Mother,
appearing with different names & faces.
Though I had never heard of
Ta'Nit, I woke with her name
one morning in July of 2010,
with a message "Act for Ta'Nit
and it will benefit all beings."
I've been curious about that message
and Ta'Nit ever since.
What I love about this archaeological
find is that Ta'Nit is shown with her
left hand over her 'higher heart' and
her right hand in the Abhay Mudra --
the mudra of 'no fear', used both
to signify "I'm a friend" and also
to cultivate 'no fear'.
Where one is centered in
the Heart, fear is kept at bay.
Or said in another way, "perfect
Love casts out all fear."
For most of us, me included,
this is deep and daily practice.
Hindu images of the Goddess
or Maha Devi in her Durga, Lakshmi,
Bhramaridevi, and Akhilandeshwari
aspects are often shown
with the 'no fear' Abhay mudra, too.
You'll notice this mudra in
other spiritual traditions as well.
How does it feel when you
align with the energy hinted at
in this Ta'Nit image -- and how does
it feel when you try this mudra with
your left hand on your heart and
your right in the Abhay Mudra of
no fear, head slightly bowed
towards your heart, and a gentle
smile on your face?
Image of Ta'Nit statue from the Hecht Museum in Haifa, Israel.