Review of Carol P. Christ and Judith Plaskow, Goddess and God in the World: Conversations in Embodied Theology. Minneapolis: Fortress, 2016. Pp. 330, $29 U.S., ISBN: 9781506401188.
The remarkable book is a collaboration between two distinguished feminist theologians (and in the case of Christ, thealogian), who are long-time friends, and who both earned their doctorates in theology at Yale University in the days when women theologians, let alone feminist theologians, were rare in the academy, and not particularly welcome. Despite their similarities in age, theological vocation and education, and their shared feminism, these two founding mothers disagree significantly in their theologies, most notably in their understandings of the divine, Goddess and God, although there are also many overlaps. For both women, theology is understood as embodied in their backgrounds, autobiographies and experiences, as well as in academic reflection and analysis. Their theological collaboration is presented as a dialogue between two friends and colleagues who are not afraid respectfully and vigorously to disagree on significant issues.
[Editor’s Note: This Introduction is from She Rises: How Goddess Feminism, Activism, and Spirituality? Volume 2.]
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She Rises: How Goddess Feminism, Activism, and Spirituality? is a proud sister book to She Rises: Why Goddess Feminism, Activism, and Spirituality? Inheriting the legacy of Volume 1, it continues to interweave the warp (the theme of the book) and the weft (our stories). What we present in this book is a tapestry collectively interwoven by twenty-first century Goddessians/Magoists. As many as 96 contributors from around the world have provided captivating motifs in multi-genres of prose, poetry, and art. This tapestry is no ordinary one; it stands as the genome map of the primordial consciousness of WE in S/HE to those who will discover it. It charts out ways to undo patriarchal programs at personal, cultural, and cosmic levels and to enter the Way of the Primordial Mother, or the Creatrix.
The Creatrix represented by the three-color rays of light, patterned in nine corners.
It took many years for me to pronounce the communal nature of the Mago Work. Defining the Mago Work necessarily endows us with the bird’s eye view of the Great Goddess, the primordial consciousness of WE in S/HE. Early this year, I asked people to define the Mago Work and their definitions are illuminating about what this book ultimately seeks to achieve. Continue reading
“The Mago Work is committed to the collective cultivation of the consciousness of WE in S/HE, the Great Goddess/Mago, through publication, self-education, and networking conducted by volunteers. In the process, we become whole in our body, mind, and spirit, regaining nature’s power of self-evolution in ourselves. We know deep down that the gynocentric force of Life is leading the Way. That is the Source of our love, creativity, and compassion.” Helen Hye-Sook Hwang, Ph.D., Founding Director of The Mago Work
Although the interviewees showed considerable variety in their responses to questions about their conceptions of God, their responses can be used to sketch the contours of a “grassroots” thealogy, originating from the devotion, reflection and lived experience of CGS women. It is a thealogy that embraces many names and manifestations of the divine, encompassing both
[Editor’s Note: This was first proposed in The Mago Circle, Facebook Group, on March 6, 2014. We have our voices together below and publish them in sequels. It is an ongoing project and we encourage our reader to join us! Submit yours today to Helen Hwang (email@example.com). Or visit and contact someone in Return to Mago’s Partner Organizations.]
Esther Essinger “Why Goddess, when “G*D” is perpetrating so much grief?
1) First, it’s vital to know that Goddess is NOT “G*D” in a skirt. It is demanded of NO one that they “believe” or “have faith”, so there can be no guilt (and no punishment! (No Hell below us, thank you John) in NOT choosing to interest oneself in these particular Stories, myths, legends and tales which center the Cosmic Female, the Universal Mother, Mother Earth /Mother Nature at their core. No evangelism happening here!
Mary Ann Beavis (Ph.D., Cambridge University) is Professor of Religion and Culture at St. Thomas More College, the University of Saskatchewan (Saskatoon, Canada). Her areas of specialization include Christian Origins, Feminist Biblical Interpretation, and Women and Religion.
For several years, I have been researching a phenomenon that I call “Christian Goddess Spirituality” (CGS), a blending of elements from Christianity and Goddess Spirituality. I have interviewed over 100 women who self-describe as practicing CGS in some form, and held a focus group of fourteen CGS practitioners in June 2013. (The reason for interviewing women only at this stage in the research is strategic, as my hunch is that women and men seek the Goddess for different reasons.) This is a very condensed and preliminary report on some research results, focussing on the thealogical aspects of CGS, illustrated by quotations from the interviews.