Recently, I have been remembering a mystical experience I had some years ago. I’ve come to believe that when such experiences are being remembered, it means some aspect of the engagement is significant now.

I was staying with my sister-friend in Sedona, and while I was there I discovered I frequently had profound mystical experiences when I meditated in the late afternoons. That day, I laid down, propping my head up on the arm of the couch. (This is a wonderful posture for deep meditation, as long as you don’t fall asleep.)

Opening my heart, I allowed myself to be present in a loving exchange of energy between Divine Masculine presence and my Sacred Feminine, with every inhale and exhale. Eventually, I drifted into a state of what I would call luscious, loving stasis. As I sank deeper into the space, I was startled by a rustling of wings as I watched a spirit-dove fly out from my heart. To my spirit-body this was as real as if a physical bird had flown from my chest.

It is no surprise that such experiences linger with us all our lives, yet I have been wondering why the dove was calling to me now. So, I did a little research about doves and discovered that among the many pairs of animals on this planet, they maintain a wonderful balance as male and female in preparing for the birth of and caring for their young.

The male gathers the sticks for the nest. The female arranges them. They take turns throughout the day sitting on their eggs or tending to their young. Both parents create pigeon milk for their little ones and for the most part, one parent or the other remains with the nest at all times. They are in many ways a most equalitarian couple.

I understand doves have been given as wedding gifts since the times of the Romans and Greeks. They have served as messengers and talismans. The dove has been associated with Aphrodite, Venus, Sophia and Mary. It was the badge of the Knights Templar and the symbol of Saint Scholastica, the patron saint of rain. It is said Mohammed had a dove eat from his ear, and it has been associated with the Holy Spirit. Historically, and across many cultures and spiritual practices, they have symbolized love, commitment, purity, prophecy and divination.

I must admit, I enjoyed the research, but I still find myself asking, “Why a dove?” Perhaps, I will spend my life learning and understanding the significance of a dove flying from my heart. Perhaps, in the end, what is most important is what I felt in that moment. My sense of inner balance with the masculine and feminine natures of love was tremendous and the dove seemed to burst forth out of that love.

In many ways my quest to experience the powerful distinctions and union of the Divine Masculine and the Divine Feminine are as important to me now as they were then. For a sweet and memorable moment in my life, perhaps the dove was a sacred messenger affirming the joy of loving—the perfect message then and today.

For information about a beautiful retreat to open your heart in the power of the sacred feminine, visit Women Water and Spirit