artist unknown, sourced from pinterest

MARY MAGDALENE … Fact Or Fiction?

Erin Faith Allen
Nov 3 · 3 min read

Maybe Mary Magdalene doesn’t mind wearing our assumptions, contortions, projections, and violations of who she was.

I just don’t know a single woman who enjoys having her life hijacked for the convenience of others.


She is the poster child of how a woman’s life can be offered up for devouring by the masses. Maligned. A sponge for intrusive, uninvited perceptions. On the whole, guesswork at best.

I’m on a journey of inquiry into her actual world, continuing a lifelong query inside the stories we’ve been told about her. I’m culling all sources, and seeking the truth inside the mythology.


Here’s what we know about Mary Magdalene according to references in the Bible:

She became associated with Jesus after he cast ‘seven devils’ from her.

She financed his ministry.

She watched him die.

She attended his dead body.

He appeared to her first, before any other disciple, upon his resurrection.

The End.


Here are the stories that circulate in a collective Christianity:

She was an adulteress.

She was a prostitute.

She washed the feet of Jesus with her tears and her hair.

Scholars agree there is no evidence Mary was the women described in these stories.


In the Gnostic gospels, she is referenced as being a beloved of Jesus, whom he kissed frequently.

She is also referenced as one who is appointed to carry on his ministry.

As such, there are thoughts among some scholars that Mary was possibly his wife.


In the New Thought-ish paradigm, one foundation to a myriad of beliefs about her life is that Mary was a temple sex priestess trained in the lineage of Isis.

Another belief is that Mary bore Christ’s child, from whom their lineage exists to this day.

Some believe Mary, with or without their child, was carried from Jerusalem and brought to the shores of Europe. Some say France, some say the holy waters of an ancient Glastonbury. With Mary by his side, it is said, Joseph of Aramethea struck his staff in the ground and proclaimed Glastonbury the birthplace of Christianity in the west.

Some say Christ did not die, and escaped with them.


I observe that we humans love to gobble up any version of a story that serves up justification for our beliefs, which themselves are based on a version of justification of egoic structures that live in the shadows.

So, here’s what I’m asking myself:

What parts of the various stories of Mary Magdalene have I swallowed whole and WHY?

Where is the fine line *in me* between faith and fact?

Do I take the time to seek truth and digest facts before I bet my whole world on a story someone tells — or sells?

If I decide to take on this belief as my personal faith-based ‘fact’, can I let others believe what they believe, and we all just carry on?


Beliefs aren’t wrong.

Humans have been assigning meanings and superpowers to deities and otherworldliness since we arrived here.

We seem to require our beliefs and our faith. We crave definition and construct to assign to this madness of living.

It’s just that sometimes, we cause a lot of harm when we adhere to *our personal belief* from a fear of being wrong, losing control, or even a space of self-righteous indignation and justification of a cerebral or faith-based moral high ground.

All of us.

Not just *those people* on that other side of the political / religious / cultural spectrum.


Also. It is crazy frustrating that there really are no images of MM with her most-likely-actual color of skin.

If you know the artist who created this image, please let me know. I would like to honor their work with their name.

Erin Faith Allen

Written by

Writer, artist, history geek, and lover of the esoteric. Author of two visual memoirs, maker of films, and devotee of knowledge.

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