Blue Ghosts: Are you Closing Your Eyes to the Mysteries of Life? by Caryn MacGrandle

I grew up north of Dallas Texas in a suburbia hell called Plano: a concrete, strip mall jungle devoid of nature and trees beyond the contrived and manicured ones.  When I married an Airforce pilot and escaped to Minnesota, Mississippi, Colorado, California and then Illinois, I learned how much I needed nature. 

Fast forward twenty years and on my second marriage, we moved just south of Huntsville, Alabama to a small valley community where the foothills surrounding it signal the beginning of the Appalachian mountain range.

Home.  My cells sighed in relief.

Soon after moving to Alabama, my troubled second marriage ended.  And I found myself, like so many other Americans, uninsured.  I was able to get my blood pressure medicine online but not the Clonazepam prescription that I have always used for my anxiety.  When my dad died suddenly in the 90’s, my panic attacks began, and since then my anxiety had been an always present force in my life. 

Continue reading “Blue Ghosts: Are you Closing Your Eyes to the Mysteries of Life? by Caryn MacGrandle”

Blessed By Gratitude and Sharing by Xochitl Alvizo

Incarnation, Goddess spirituality, Xochitl Alvizo,  god became fleshCarol Christ’s post yesterday has gotten me thinking about the differences between Christianity and earth-based spiritualities. Of course, there are many differences, that goes without saying. However, being someone who comfortably stands at the intersection of them both I am usually more aware of the ways in which they seem to intersect in life-changing and inspiring ways for me. Nonetheless, Carol has me thinking…

Over the course of the last year here on Feminism and Religion, Carol has written a lot about the importance of ancestors – how when speaking about embodiment and interdependence it is crucial we acknowledge all the ways in which ancestors make us who we are. Mothers literally give us our bodies and our ancestors’ genes, connecting us to a long line of people both materially/biologically as well as historically. Ancestors give us a sense of connection to places and ground us to lands that were meaningful to them and thus become meaningful to us. And Carol also reminds us that our family and ancestors transmit to us memories that impact us psychically and in powerful ways. These emphases on connection, interdependence, rootedness, and embodiment flow from her earth-based Goddess practice and thealogy. Her spirituality leads her to a greater sense of appreciation and gratitude for the Source of Life and for all the sources of life, and she affirms that because of this deep awareness of interdependence and relationality people who practice earth-based spiritualities are “moved to share what has been given to [them] with others.” Continue reading “Blessed By Gratitude and Sharing by Xochitl Alvizo”

Gratitude and Sharing: Two Fundamental Principles of Goddess Spirituality by Carol P. Christ

carol p. christThe more I practice the spirituality of the Goddess, the more I understand that earth-based spiritualities are rooted in two fundamental principles:  gratitude and sharing.  We give thanks to the earth for the gift of life. As we recognize our interdependence and interconnection in the web of life, we are moved to share what has been given to us with others. *

When I first began to lead Goddess Pilgrimages in Crete, I was inspired by a line in Homer to begin a pilgrimage tradition of pouring libations of milk, honey, water, and wine on ancient stones. At first I knew the form, but not its deeper meaning.  It gradually dawned on me as I thought about the large number of pouring vessels in the museums, the altar stones, and the Procession Fresco from Knossos, that an important part of Minoan rituals involved processions in which people offered first fruits back to the Mother whose body had produced them, and poured libations on altars.

kernos stone kay keys

Over twenty years of performing the ritual of pouring libations has convinced me that this was not “a” but “the” central Minoan ritual.  Its purpose is to thank Mother Earth for the bounty She has bestowed on us. Continue reading “Gratitude and Sharing: Two Fundamental Principles of Goddess Spirituality by Carol P. Christ”

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