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PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Why Witches Have No Church

 A Tale of the Driftless Witches

Once upon a time, witches used to have a church of their own, just like everyone else.

Well, maybe not just like everyone else.

The witches' church, you see, was made out of cheese.

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Sacred Feminine or Goddess Feminism?

In recent years “the Sacred Feminine” has become interchangeable with (for some) and preferable to (for others) “Goddess” and “Goddess feminism.” The terms Goddess and feminism, it is sometimes argued, raise hackles: Is Goddess to replace God? And if so why? Does feminism imply an aggressive stance? And if so, against whom or what?

In contrast, the term “sacred feminine” (with or without caps) feels warm and fuzzy, implying love, care, and concern without invoking the G word or even the M(other) word--about which some people have mixed feelings. Advocates of the sacred feminine stand against no one, for men have their “sacred feminine” sides, while women have their “sacred masculine” sides as well.

Nothing lost, and much to be gained. Right? Wrong.

Perseus with the Head of Medusa: Sacred Masculine?
Perseus with the Head of Medusa: Sacred Masculine and Sacred Feminine?

When Goddess feminism emerged onto the scene, it had a political edge. It was about women affirming, as Meg Christian crooned in “Ode to a Gym Teacher,” that “being female means you still can be strong.” Goddess feminism arose in clear opposition to patriarchy and patriarchal religions. It was born of an explicit critique of societies organized around male domination, violence, and war; and of the male God or Gods of patriarchal religions as justifying domination, violence, and war. In this context, “the sacred masculine” was not understood to be a neutral or positive concept. To the contrary, the male Gods of patriarchy were understood to be at the center of symbol systems that justify domination.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor says #
    Carol, I agree with Lisa - but I'd like to add that as a former Viet Nam war protestor, it's very hard to feel safe expressing yo
  • Carol P. Christ
    Carol P. Christ says #
    Siggghhh. Here's another song "You may say that I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one." There are at least two of us... "Imagine
  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor says #
    Yes, let's imagine it every day. By the way, I was moved to tears by your piece about washing the clothes of the children who had
  • Lisa Sarasohn
    Lisa Sarasohn says #
    Carol, I appreciate what you’ve said here (as well as the news from my friend Susan Foster of her recent travels with you through
  • Carol P. Christ
    Carol P. Christ says #
    ess is feminine, not diminuitive. I think in practice it does not feel at all diminuitive. It feels more female and powerful that
Birch Moon Meditation : for the January Full Moon

This is the guided meditation I always do on the first full moon of the year:

Close your eyes, sink into your body, breathe.

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Pagan News Beagle: Faithful Friday, January 22

Jews in Britain celebrate their heritage and their survival in the face of centuries of persecution. A Taoist offers perspective on mourning and facing death. And an interfaith calendar is provided which outlines some of the most important holidays and festivals of the year. It's Faithful Friday, our weekly segment on news about faiths and religious communities around the world! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Looking Deeper Into Forming a Goddess Circle

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Bear Dance

Well, Yule is well and truly gone.

Gone the tree, with all its treasures.

Gone the green: the mistletoe, the holly, the ivy.

All is stripped away now, burned away to ash.

What remains, essential, is the seed, the core, the center.

Fire: the pure, pure flame.

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