Marketing in the New World and Karen Tate’s New Book on Normalizing Abuse by Caryn MacGrandle

Marketing was my thing in college.  And my first professional job out of college was in Marketing at the Regional Headquarters of Canon in Dallas.  And then my life took me out into the weeds: a marriage to an Airforce pilot following him to the snow filled tundra of North Dakota, the swamps of Mississippi, two divorces, four children, twists and turns and ups and downs all landing smack dab to where I sit in front of my computer at the moment outside of Huntsville, Alabama at 53 finally feeling like I’ve got somewhat of a handle on this crazy ride called Life or at least a better idea of how to buckle in and enjoy the ups and get through the downs.

I’m in the midst of adding a store to my computer app that lists Sacred Circles all over the world so that I can showcase some really incredible books, tarot and oracle decks, statues and other products that my friends and colleagues have created.  And as I research and learn Shopify, my stomach turns as it mainly is video after video on how you ‘take’ people.  How you jump ahead of the competition selling the same stuff but get people to buy your stuff while getting them to feel as if they have gotten the deal of the century.  Free product but you make your money on the shipping and handling.  Free shipping but you make your money on the product.  Compare at prices. Apps to continually remind potential customers to buy.  Get in front of your customers faces. Get them to open their wallet. Again.  Again.  Again.

So you can take that cruise.

At the same time, as a regular contributor to Feminism and Religion, I receive an email looking for volunteers to read Karen Tate’s new book Normalizing Abuse:  A Commentary on the Culture of Pervasive Abuse

I have been familiar with Karen Tate and her long running Voices of the Sacred Feminine radio show that ran over a decade.  I am in deep appreciation of all the women who paved the way for the work so many of us are doing now.

I say yes.  And read the book.

It is not an easy read. Paragraph after paragraph and example after example of the abuse inherent in our civilization.  Some of it I rebuke, ‘no, that is not true.’ But this little voice inside me keeps nudging ‘what if?’ ‘What if’ even if just some of what she says is true: that these abusive, traumatic, oppressive ‘norms’ have been built into and integral to the business, police, media and foundation that we grew up thinking were the land of the free and the land of opportunity? Because let’s face it, everywhere you look, people are sliding backwards, hurting, stressed and falling through the cracks while the ‘haves’ desperately hold even tighter to their so called ‘security’.

It brings me down.  It is nowhere near as fun as ordering the Lofbaz pants off of Amazon so that I can wear them to my belly dancing classes.

But I know that it is essential.

Karen’s book has a thought provoking several page long intro by Matthew Fox, American priest, theologian and author of 35 books on spirituality and contemporary culture who writes:

Carl Jung predicted that our times, the times of the Aquarian Age, would be a time when evil would no longer be under the table but on top of the table for all to see. But he anguished over whether we would have the courage and the will to address it. We address evil by 1) seeing and acknowledging what is going on and 2) by way of action. Jung asked: Would we have the will to respond and to act?

Will we have the will to respond and act?

Karen mentions my divine feminine app on her newly returned now called podcast instead of radio show.  I have a woman who hears this, becomes a member on my app and wants to participate more fully.  I am speaking with her tomorrow. 

I do the review for Karen and offer to write a post for her about her book on FAR. 

My home is filled with books by friends and peers because I consider it a deep honor to spend the $10-20 supporting their creative processes that have birthed these books.  These books open new pathways, help us see other perspectives, know we are not alone and otherwise shift and change our current paradigm.

As I am pondering on this post, I check out the podcasts on Karen’s newly returned show.  One jumps out at me on Restoring Sisterhood by Beth Bartlett.  I like what Beth has to say on Sisterhood:

“Sisterhood is not about unity, about women coming together and agreeing about everything.  It’s about women acting in solidarity with each other, listening and responding, acting and advocating, showing up to do the work.  Sisterhood is about honoring and acting on the obligation we have to each other. “

I put everything aside to simmer in my brain overnight, and this morning I wake up to a FAR post by Beth Bartlett speaking of her transplanted heart. 

I post about these things on the app and think to myself that this is what marketing should truly be:  communication, authenticity and collaboration.

Not how do you sell the most crap to the most people to make the most money.

Normalizing Abuse:  A Commentary on the Culture of Pervasive Abuse by Karen Tate.  Karen’s book made me think about how I grew up privileged in a predominantly white, high middle class neighborhood with superb schools.  My mother was the first in her family to go to college.  My father came from Irish immigrants who were put on boats and worked as chauffeurs when they got here.  My path of trajectory was to work hard, get a college degree and go farther than them.

In a historical perspective, I have not.

I don’t have a fancy car, a large house nor take lavish vacations. 

But what I do have is so much more valuable.

I understand now when I look back the privilege and blinders that I wore throughout the first half of my life inherent with who I am class, gender and race.  I have put that into a herstorical context.  I looked around and saw that just because you worked harder did not mean that you would go farther and that there are all sorts of challenges in our current culture that cause people to slip through the cracks. 

What follows Karen’s observations and examples of abuse inherent in the current systems is the possibility of what if we could build a world where everyone’s basic needs were covered and where everyone is respected for what they do bring to the table? What if we started to think of all of us together not just an individual mad dash to the finish line?

Doing this work these past nine years, I see this incredible web we are weaving: these connections we form and the way we lift each other up, how one of us falls and the other gives a gentle prod, a shoulder to lean on and just how invaluable and priceless these connections are. 

These are incredible transitionary times we are living in.  Sometimes having the will to respond and act is as simple as buying the book, supporting the person, reading and listening to new and even sometimes opposing perspectives with open hearts and minds.

In my mind, I see this beautiful web that Grandmother Spider has woven in my life filled with incredible people such as Karen Tate and how we are all holding and supporting each other and encouraging each other to go farther, do more. Change the world. That is the only marketing I wish to be a part of.
I’m not saying don’t buy the Lofbaz pants.  I’m just saying buy the book first.

To buy Karen’s books click here

Author: Caryn MacGrandle

Caryn MacGrandle is the creator behind the Divine Feminine App: an online community since 2016 that has been connecting women (all genders) in Circles, events and resources. If you combined the number of years of experience that the users of the divine feminine app have in doing the Mother’s work, you would be back in time to a society that valued the Earth and the Mother, recognizing that we are all her children and must work together as such. Caryn works tirelessly each day to regain this balance and promote Sacred Circles. Caryn has participated in numerous online and location events such as the World Parliament of Religions in September of 2021 in which she presented a workshop on Embodying the Goddess: Creating Rituals with Mind, Body and Soul, a webinar/panel with Dale Allen presenting Dale’s Indie film award winning “In Our Right Minds: Leading Women to Strength as Leaders and Men to Strength without Armor” and many more. Each and every day, Caryn (aka Karen Moon) works tirelessly towards her belief that the most important area to first find equality and balance is the divinity found within yourself.

15 thoughts on “Marketing in the New World and Karen Tate’s New Book on Normalizing Abuse by Caryn MacGrandle”

  1. I love the way you wove these various threads together. I’m glad what I said about sisterhood was meaningful to you. Thank you to Karen Tate for putting it out in the world. Your post is an example of that. You put in words so beautifully the “incredible web” of lifting each other up, giving a gentle prod or a shoulder to lean on. Thank you.


  2. Love this review, Caryn. I also wonder “…what if we could build a world where everyone’s basic needs were covered and where everyone is respected for what they do bring to the table? What if we started to think of all of us together not just an individual mad dash to the finish line?” We are all connected to each other as well as to the natural world (animate and inanimate). Thank you for articulating how abuse (after a while) feels “normal” and “right.” Let us all keep asking questions!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. ABUSE of every sort is so normalized that even when awake it’s so easy to lose touch with what is… so a book like this is very very valuable – it’s so much easier to go along…

    weirdly, just this morning I dreamed that I was lying naked on a couch while some man was ‘appreciating’ my body – it’s ok I am telling myself though I feel discomfort – meanwhile my dog throws up. Perfect example of mind / body split that goes along with what is – the pornographic gaze – objectifying women is a full time job this culture is endlessly engaged in. BODY KNOWS WHAT MIND DENIES -I avoid news as if it was a plague – but whenever researching some stupid glamorous woman is getting press and pops up in my face – and like me in the dream THEY LIKE IT. Enough said.


    1. Thank you Sara. You’ve articulated what I’ve heard and witnessed over and over. “It’s so much easier to go along.” We tell ourselves it’s not abuse if we even allow ourselves the momentary consideration something isn’t right. It’s hard to read some of what’s in here despite the many heartfelt parts but it’s so necessary for us to “see it” if we’re going to eradicate it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The problem is that we have all been socialized into abuse unconsciously and even with work and awareness an uncomfortable twinge needs to set off an alarm button that screams abuse! And how do we do that….? Last night I watched a movie that made me uncomfortable and ignored it – I needed to have heeded body‘s warning — don‘t expose myself even visually was one of the dream meanings perhaps but it’s also a pattern,
        And that pattern will surface when we are vulnerable — ugh.


  4. Karen’s book is wonderful and I’m so glad you wrote about it for FAR! The book makes you look at everything in a new light and see all kinds of ways we need to change our society and how we interact with it. Suddenly I’m seeing abuse and trauma in places where it truly is, but where I never noticed it before. I also really love this post for how you think about how to uplift other women and their efforts monetarily. Finding ways to navigate our economic system compassionately and ethically is a challenge and your idea of just spending a little when we can to support authors and others whose work is important in ways that bring us all together is both insightful and effective. Thanks!


  5. I love this review and how it blends your experience with Karen’s new book. (I am about half way through the book; it has an important message and I read slowly.) I saw a graphic recently on Facebook that showed a human pyramid, but rather than the usual men stepping on each other, it showed diverse women helping each other up. One held a ladder, one was reaching down a hand, etc. Unfortunately, my tech abilities are not up to finding it again.


  6. Thank you Caryn, Sara, Beth, Esther, Carolyn, Judith and Janet! It wasn’t easy to lay myself bare in the opening chapters that leads into the chapters of abuse all over (academia, religion, government, media, military, society, culture, family/friends, workplace, etc) alternative solutions we can use to heal and “why we do what we do as humans” but I hoped if I admitted things I hadn’t looked at for years – or ever – it might give others incentive to do the same. To awaken – the first step to ridding ourselves of the toxic. It was really remarkable as I was writing and conversing with contributors or interested parties how they didn’t even see the abuse anymore. It was baked into their psyches as normal and what they had to endure to survive and they stopped naming it abuse – especially if they somehow depended on the abuser. It made me realize all the more this had to be not just said – but SHOUTED! I hoped if we can name it abuse, exploitation, even SIN (?) then maybe we can call it out more often. Eradicate it. Make it taboo.

    Thank you all again for being there and speaking out with your feedback on the book. It was written during my isolation when I was recovering from the PTSD from the stun gun attack and the fallout from my husband’s brain injury – which I see now as a gift that led to much self reflection and revelation.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I think slow reading is good. I like to read books slowly and let them sink in. I’ve seen that graphic Judith! And I believe it is the world we are building. Thank you for the comment.


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