Voices of the Sacred Feminine – Conversations to Re-Shape Our World, Edited by Rev Dr Karen Tate, Published by Changemakers Books. paperback £10.38 400 pages
This is an anthology of specially chosen articles from keynote speakers, authors and activists who are supportive of the Divine Feminine, each article is between 400 – 1,000 words in length and a short autobiography of the contributor follows each article. All articles cover some aspect of the goddess and are derived from many cultures, for instance, sacred activism, social change, planetary welfare, healing, empowerment and mutual support, in addition to challenges to major patriarchal religions. Worship of the Divine Feminine fills many a gap in general religious thoughts and fail to promote women to positions of power and influence or to recognise the importance of the many benefits that are offered from honouring matriarchal spirituality. Amongst the articles are several interviews which have been aired on the radio broadcast by the presenter Karen Tate. Several of the articles are written from a US perspective but where-ever one is in the world, one can gain something from each and every contribution provided. I have not provided each of the article titles but just idea/s that caught my eye which I thought worthy to mention.
Valuable contributions are from Amy Peck (balance, equality, reverence, wisdom, compassion, unconditional love); Selena Fox (female deities of freedom from restraint, independence, rights, hope, justice, piety, courage); Jean Shinoda Bolen (antidote to terrorism, domination of women); Gus diZerega (US oppression of women, fundamentalism in religion and politics); Laura Flanders (radio interview on US politics and the Tea Party); Charles Eisenstein (finance and patriarchy, consumerism, consciousness, culture); Genevieve Vaughan (issues of justice, ethics, caring, gift economy, egalitarian issues, consumerism); Gloria Feldt (radio interview on power issues, value of women, questions accepted male culture); Fr Roy Bourgeois (decorated war vet and ex-catholic priest and nominee for Nobel Peace Prize 2010 on support for the ordination of women priests); Jeanette Blonigen Clancy (raising awareness of sexism in religious language); Matthew Fox (The ‘Dark Night of Society’ how to create a new humanity and the restoration of sacredness); Carl A P Ruck (connecting to the ancient mysteries); Prof Andrew Gurevich (consumerism trumps cooperation, rethinking social institutions, interconnectivity, cave art); Starhawk (radio interview, climate change, reclaiming rituals, value and principles); Cristina Biaggi (early societies) Riane Eisler (women’s issues in good business practice, wellbeing, caring, stable employment, safe work environment, respect, flexibility); Rev Shirley Ann Ranck (Persephone and Demeter, Lydia Rayle (sacred images of goddess, banners, spiritual journeys); Rev Sandra Spencer (Kali Ma); Candace C Kant (female strength myths with a Sekhmet Charge); Joan Norton (a personal encounter with Mary Magdalene, channelled mysteries); Charlene Spretnak (radio interview, Virgin Mary and Dark Madonna of Guadalupe); Joan Marler (radio interview, restoration of European Kali, Medusa); Barbara G Walker (Motherhood and power, what has been stolen from women); Tim Ward (personal healing through devotion to the female deity); Isadora Gabrielle Leidenfrost and Alisa Starkweather (The Red Tent Movement, dealing with oppression in female gatherings); Dr D C A Hillman (drugs in pagan times, teenage girls); Art Noble (goddess honouring from a personal male perspective); Nicki Scully (healing through visualisation); Noam Chomsky (radio interview sacred feminine values, social change political alternatives); Donna Henes (the Queen); Judy Gratin (menstruation); Normandi Ellis (dream temples, plant medicine, trance, vision questing); Elizabeth Fisher (Multicultural perspectives, Earth centred values); Jann Aldredge-Clanton (healing, sacred feminine within Christianity); James D Rietveld (equality through love, short story from a child’s view); Phyllis Chesler (female control through jealousy, aggression, competition); (female authority); Ven Rev Patrick McCollum (Kazakstan and India) in memory of Layne Redmond, composer, author, film-maker, drum teacher; wrapping it all together is Karen Tate. There is something here for everyone to learn from, be inspired by and to have their thoughts confirmed. Altogether the book covers every aspect of this very wide and important topic. Well worth the purchase price! Reviewer: Wendy Stokes www.wendystokes.co.uk