Third Wave Witch: Feminist Spirituality, Spiritual Feminism

Third Wave Witchcraft explores the intersection of feminism, Witchcraft, Goddess Spirituality, and feminist activism. A place to explore how to make our spirituality more feminist, our feminism more spiritual, and our world more just.

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Susan Harper

Susan Harper

Susan Harper is an eclectic solitary Feminist Witch from Irving, Texas. She is a professor of Anthropology, Sociology, and Women's Studies, with a focus on gender, religion, and sexuality. She is also an activist, community educator, and writer. When she's not making magick or fomenting social change, Susan is the head soapmaker, herbalist, and aromatherapist for Dreaming Priestess Creations. She shares her life with her partner, Stephanie, five cats, and two guinea pigs.

It's been a hard spring for many of us, including this Priestess. We've been doing a lot of emotional housecleaning, facing fears, putting to rest old selves, and navigating a world that seems to be determined to show us its cruelest face. It can be hard to find even a moment of peace, of gentleness, of compassion. That's why I'm delighted that Kuan Yin, She Who Hears the Cries of the World, has decided to visit us this week. 

Kuan Yin reminds us that if our compassion does not include ourselves, it is incomplete. She also reminds us to release judgement. This does not mean that we cannot be discerning, or that we cannot decide to remove ourselves from situations that are toxic or harmful. Rather, she reminds us that we can use our discernment and compassion to transform ourselves and others. b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_0373.JPG

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It’s been a long, wet, and trying Spring for the Priestess, and for many of us! With the hard emotional work of Venus Retrograde calling us to revisit our deepest heart wounds when it comes to love, the challenges of communicating during Mercury Retrograde, and the navigating of the stormy karmic waters of Saturn Retrograde, we’ve all been doing a lot of emotional and spiritual heavy lifting! Even without all the social and political turmoil going on for many of us, from the US to the UK and beyond, it’s been a challenging few months. Now that the planets are slowly returning to their regular patterns (emphasis on the slowly), however, it’s time to get back to what grounds us and look ahead. What will June have in store for us, after such an eventful Winter and Spring?

I’ve drawn three cards for us from Kris Walherr’s lovely Goddess Tarot to give us some guidance through the first two weeks of June.

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It's March, which here in the Northern Hemisphere marks the beginning of Spring. Back on the Dakota prairies where I grew up, March often blew in like a lion with brisk winds and rains, blowing away the last of the snow and ice. (Though sometimes it brought more snow...) Here in Texas, March comes in a little more gently most years, with warm balmy days and rain. Occassionally we end up with tornadoes and thunderstorms to mark the beginning of Spring, though those will often come closer to the end of the month.

However March manifests, it's one of my favorite months of the year. The Earth feels like she is taking a long, languid stretch after the cold Winter. Life begins to stir. It's time to till the soil, to plant seeds, to make ready for the growing season.

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This post was originally posted at my WordPress blog, Priestessing the Dream

I've been on a bit of a feminist thealogy/feminist spirituality history tour of late. It feels like the moment is ripe for a whole new wave of Goddess Spirituality to be born, with the resurgence in interest in Witchcraft born of the #Resistance, plus the newly visible nature of the feminist movement due to the Women's March. The work of W.I.T.C.H. in Portland and Chicago has also been a reminder of the rich intertwining of feminist politics and witchcraft that gave rise to the Goddess Spirituality I practice . Even though I part ways with many of the movement's founders on issues of trans inclusion, biological essentialism, cultural appropriation, and more, at my core Goddess Spirituality and Witchcraft are what shapes my life and work and gives them meaning.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Susan Harper
    Susan Harper says #
    Right? I feel that way about Carol Christ's "Why Women Need the Goddess" -- it moves me every time I read it, even though I've now
  • Michelle Gruben
    Michelle Gruben says #
    I'm always amazed at how fresh The Spiral Dance feels. Amazing that it's creeping up on 40. I think there is a wonderful amount of

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

The Gemini Moon is here to ask us to find a way to meld wisdom and understanding. The Sun is in philosophical, wisdom seeking Sagittarius, while the Moon is in curious, communicative Gemini.

What wisdom are you seeking? What understanding do you need to gain from it? And how can you take this new wisdom and understanding out to the world? What are you being called to share?

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Tonight's New Moon is in Sagittarius. Archer energy is always fun -- Sagittarius, while the philosopher's sign, is also always up for anything. As a Sag myself, I often say my philosophy of life is, "What? I'm too busy dancing!" When the New Moon is in Sagittarius, we're invited to look at our Shadow side and discover what spark of light we can generate or find to illuminate the darkness. Coming as it does in the darkening days before Winter Solstice, the Sagittarius New Moon also reminds us that there is always dawning after the night, and also that night will inevitably follow day. We need to ride the tides of this cycle, trusting that all darkness will eventually be dispelled by light -- even if it means that darkness must come again eventually.

The focus this new moon is on relationships -- with each other, with the world, with our communities, and with ourselves. Awakenings happening to us and around us as well -- some of these are painful, some are jarring, but all are necessary. There is a sense that the world is waking up from a long sleep, or shaking itself out of complacency. 

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  • Lizann Bassham
    Lizann Bassham says #
    Thank you, always love your insights. My intention is to share my crone experience with my beloveds (especially those in despair

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One of my favorite women on the planet, a gifted priestess with whom I am blessed to share space on the regular, wrote this beautiful piece over at her blog.

"There are some of us who are the Dark Goddess and have been for quite some time. I have noted that these folks are feeling this shift the hardest. Going through the birthing pangs as Ereshkigal writhing alone and in the dark. Facing those who are saying “it’s not that bad” or “give it a chance let’s see how things go”. We know though that that only prolongs the process. It is only through BECOMING the  Dark Goddess and seeing her for who she truly is the Goddess of creation and rebirth, that we are able to live again. She is literally attempting to birth us into a new world at this time. So are you silencing her? Attempting to persuade her that her pain is not real? Or are you standing with her and seeing the truth of this moment?"

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  • J'Karrah
    J'Karrah says #
    Love this post! I've been saying something similar for the last few years. A massive change is coming/has begun. And it will ge

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