Thus opens the Hail Mary prayer in its Western Christian form. In the Déanic version, this becomes:
Ave Maria, Fons gratiarum – "Hail Mary, Fount of grace".
Thealogically, the distinction is important, because it makes clear that Mary is the Source, and not a mere human recipient, of grace. The importance of this is explained in our full discussion of the Hail Mary prayer.
However, iconographically, the image of Our Lady distributing grace to the world is universal. The image shown here is one of the many images of Our Lady in the position known as the Distribution of Graces.
This image of Our Lady showering grace upon the world is by no means restricted to the Western figure of Mary. In the East, Quan Yin is frequently depicted holding a vase containing the sacred dew or nectar of grace or wisdom which She showers upon suffering beings.
Quan Yin may hold the vase either upright or inverted. If it is inverted it is exactly equivalent to the Marian Distribution of Graces icon – showing Her in the act of showering Her grace upon the world. In some cases statues of Quan Yin actually have water pouring from the vase, depicting the distribution of Her grace.
Interestingly, the upright vase might be said to correspond to the formula "Hail Mary, full of grace", while the inverted vase corresponds to the words "Hail Mary, fount of grace".
Again, some would attribute "Hail Mary, full of grace" to the Mother, who, contains within Her all grace, while "fount of grace" may be considered as belonging to the Daughter who mediates between the Mother and the world of fallen beings, distributing Her grace.
Nevertheless, in the Hail Mary prayer – which is addressed to the Mother – "fount of grace" is important, for it represents not only the Distribution of Graces – which She performs through Her Daughter – but the fact that She is the fons et origo – the Fount and Source – of all grace.
A full explanation of the Hail Mary Prayer as a devotion to Our Mother God
The Immaculate Heart of Mary: A beautiful and profound symbol of Our Dear Lady's Godhead
Creation Myths and the Virgin Mary: What is a Creation Myth? Is it true? And how is Our Lady Mary connected with the primordial Creation Myth?
Choosing a Virgin Mary Statue: A guide for devotees of Our Mother God
Mary Statues as Images of God the Mother: Further important information on statues of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Maria-sama no Kokoro: A beautiful online video of a hymn to the Immaculate Heart of Mary with Déanic interpretation
The Mother-God Hail Mary MP3 The Hail Mary, as "translated" for devotional use by children of Our Mother God, presented and explained in a sermon given at a Filanic Service
Mary and Eve: Reflections on the original Divine status of Eve as Creatrix, and the traditional idea of Mary as "the New Eve"
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The Gospel of Our Mother God is a collection of inspirational texts, prayers and daily inspiration for the Mother-Faith devotee or household.
The Other Philosophy
Everything you have ever heard comes out of the patriarchal world-view. Its materialism, its religion, even its feminism. Here is the other way of seeing the world; the natural way: the way that everyone saw things before patriarchy and will again when patriarchy is long forgotten.