Much of what we find in the eyes of Jesus must first have been in the eyes of Mary. The mother’s vision is powerfully communicated to her children. Mary had to be his first “spiritual director,” the one who humanly gave a life vision to Jesus, who taught Jesus how to believe. What was in Jesus’ eyes was somehow first in hers. And in both of their eyes is what they both believe about God.
The Eternal Feminine holds us naked at each end of life: the Madonna first brings us into life, and then the grief-stricken mother of the Pietá hands us over to death. She expands our capacity to feel, to enter the compassion and the pain of being human. She holds joy deeply, where death cannot get to it. Jesus learns by watching her, and he protects her Motherhood almost in his very last words (John 19:26) from the cross.
Not a word is spoken in either place, at his birth or at his death. Did you ever think about that? Mary simply trusts and experiences deeply. She is simply and fully present. Faith is not for overcoming obstacles; it is for experiencing them—all the way through!