Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Buzz Coil: July

Here’s what’s buzzin’ on some blogs this easy-time summer:

Broomstick Chronicles: In her July 20 post, "What’s in a Name?" M. Macha Nightmare explores her various names including her mundane name (no, I’m not going to tell you – go read it), as well as her Protestant-Catholic upbringing.

Evoking the Goddess: Paul responds to our post, "Why Goddess Temples?" in his June 26 post, "Midsummer Madness and a tag."

A Pagan Sojourn: Blogger S. Nichole writes a longish thought-provoking post on June 17: "Religious Tradition and Innovative Ideas."

Hecate: The July 12 post, "Even a Stopped Clock, Etc.," is about Christopher Hitchens response to Michael Gerson’s Washington Post piece on religion and politics.

Immanent Gorgon: In her July 12 post, "Burying Patriarchy as an Act of Sanity," blogger The Gorgon discusses various issues in Goddess religions and Christianity.

Radical Goddess Thealogy: In her July 5 post, "Goodbye Goddess, Hello Pinched Space," blogger Athana traces Japan’s population explosion two thousand or so years ago to "the jump from Goddess to WarGod."

Branches Up, Roots Down: Deborah Oak blogs about her visit to New Orleans in her July 9 post, "Coming Back."

Panthea - Journeys with the Goddess: In her July 19 post, blogger Grian tells us "Why Satanists Aren’t Pagans."
Also, thanks to Grian for alerting us to:
–A new blog , Unmasking the Goddess ,by a Christian woman. Sure go on over there if you like to correct misperceptions and rant away. Frankly, I think the fact that someone thinks it’s important enough to devote a whole blog to dissing Goddess religions means we must be doing something right!
–A July 9 question on the WaPo’s "OnFaith" column that asks whether Pagans should be allowed to have military chaplains and "Would you vote for a Pagan for public office?"

Did we miss an item you think is important? We’d like to know about it, and would appreciate your leaving the info in a comment.


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Is this what you mean by 'Goddess'?

UPDATE, July 20...It turns out Sajari will remain a Goddess after all--at least for now--after agreeing to a "cleansing ceremony" to remove the taint of her US visit.

Sajani Shakya of Bhaktapur, Nepal, a 10-year-old girl, was removed from her position as a Kumari or "living Goddess," on July 3, because those who had endowed her with this title felt that her visit to the United States tainted her purity. Sajani was one of several present Kumaris, (including probably the best known, Preeti Shakya, the Royal Kumari of Kathmandu) in an unending line of pre-pubescent Nepalese girls given this title since the about the 13th century CE, with the Nepalese tradition that a young girl could be the living embodiment of the Goddess Taleju going back probably to the 6th Century CE. Similar veneration of a pre-menstrual girl as Kumari is also observed in India, where it dates to the 17th Century CE, with "virgin worship" there going back more than 2,600 years.

While I always greet with welcome wonder surviving indigenous examples of Goddess worship, this one makes me stop and think: Ordinarily, the combination of "virgin" with "Goddess," doesn't bring to my mind the image of a little girl, aka a "pre-menstrual female." The "virgin" or "maiden" aspect of the Goddess in most contemporary Western Goddess traditions usually refers to a young woman past puberty, who is independent, assertive, and possibly also sexually active. Her "virgin" status has to do not with whether she has had sex, but with her ability to survive on her own in an independent, strong manner. (Interesting that this story broke near the US Independence Day....)

In Nepal, a Kumari is chosen when she is 2-4 years old. While she is Kumari, the little girl's feet never touch the ground unless there is a red carpet beneath them. She is revered as a living Goddess whose every move and mood has great significance. But as soon as she begins menstruating, the Goddess is considered to have departed from the girl's body and she is a mere mortal again.

What is the significance of a pre-pubescent girl embodying the Goddess but the Goddess departing as soon as she reaches womanhood? Why should a little girl be deferred to but a woman receive no deference? And why should a visit to the United States taint a girl’s "virgin" status?


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Sunday, July 08, 2007

Events Coil: July 10 - Sept.2

We are bolding the links to events that last more than one day because you often need to make plans well ahead of time for those. As far as we know, all events we list are open functions; but some may be limited to women or to adults. Please check the websites for group policies. If no country is given, the event is in the USA. All times are local. When listing events for the same date, we have tried to list those occurring first, taking into account time zone differences. If there is a difference between our listings and the listings on the web page linked to, assume their web page is correct, as it may have changed since we listed from it.

The next Events Coil is planned for early to mid August and will include events listed here that haven't yet happened, plus new events for about the next 6 weeks. If you have an event you want listed in future Events Coils, please leave info a comment. See the end of this Coil for what info we need for listings.

July 10, 7:30 p.m. The Craft Connection ritual, Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

July 14, 5:30 p.m. Meditation on the the Sabbath Queen; 7:30 p.m. Havdalah ceremony, Mishkan Shekhinah, San Francisco CA

July 14, 7 p.m. New Moon Women’s Mysteries, Temple of Goddess Spirituality Dedicated to Sekhmet, Indian Springs NV

July 14, 7 p.m. New Moon Drumming, Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

July 15, 2 p.m. New Moon Healing, Glastonbury Goddess Temple, Glastonbury ENGLAND

July 18-22, Isis Festival, Temple of Isis, Geyersville CA

July 22, 11 a.m. Feast Day of Mary Magdalene with guest priestess Jeanne Michele, Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

July 22, lecture 6 p.m., worship 7 reception 7 p.m., Feast Day of Mary Magdalene with April DeConick, Brigid's Place, Houston TX

July 23, gather 7:30 p.m., Celebrate Sekhmet, Daughters of the Goddess (Dianic) San Francisco CA

July 28, 7 p.m. Full Moon Drumming, Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

July 27-29: "Green Spirit"- Full Moon and Lughnassad, Circle Sanctuary, Mt Oreb WI

July 28, gather Noon, ritual 1 p.m, Lammas (Reclaiming), Golden Gate Park, San Francisco CA

July 31, 7:30 p.m. Lammas Ceremony, Glastonbury Goddess Temple, Glastonbury ENGLAND

July 31, doors open 6:30 p.m., ritual 7 p.m. Lammas with guest priestess Loria Soma, Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

Aug. 1-5, Goddess Conference, many well-known presenters; fringe events July 29 & Aug. 6, Glastonbury, ENGLAND

Aug. 2-5
Goddess Gather with Mother Bear, Temple of Isis, Geyersville CA

Aug. 3, 6:30 p.m.,
Women's Goddess Mysteries Cycle, Daughters of Ishtar, Beaconsfield AUSTRALIA

Aug. 3, gather 7:30 p.m. Celebrate Lamas, Daughters of the Goddess (Dianic), San Francisco CA

Aug. 5, 1400 uur, Lammas, Avalon Mystic, Hillgom NEDERLAND

Aug. 5, 9 a.m., Transformation of Beliefs, "Families and Parenting," ; 11 a.m. "Self Through Eyes of Yemaya" with Amankeda Triple Jewel, Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

Aug. 9, 7 p.m. New Moon Drumming, Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

Aug. 10-12, The Heart of the Sun Ceremony Honoring Sekhmet ,Temple of Goddess Spirituality Dedicated to Sekhmet, Indian Springs NV

Aug. 13 2 p.m. New Moon Healing, Glastonbury Goddess Temple, Glastonbury ENGLAND

Aug. 14, time tba, Start of Elul (self-reflection), Mishkan Shekhinah, San Francisco CA

Aug. 14, 7:30 p.m. "The Craft Connection," Goddess Temple of Orange County, Irvine CA

Aug. 17, time tba, Friday Evening Shabbat,Mishkan Shekhinah, San Francisco CA

August 21, gather 7:30 p.m., Celebration of Isis/AuSet, Daughters of the Goddess (Dianic), San Francisco, CA

Aug. 28 7 p.m., Nine Morgans Oracles, Glastonbury Goddess Temple,
Glastonbury ENGLAND

Aug. 28, gather 7 p.m., ritual 7:30 p.m. Full Moon ritual, Goddess Temple Dedicated to Sehkmet
, Indian Springs NV

Aug. 28, 7 p.m., Full Moon Drumming, Goddess Temple of Orange County,
Irvine CA

Aug. 31-Sept.3, Shamanic Fire Dance Retreat, Circle Sanctuary, Mt. Horeb WI

Sept. 2, gather 11 a.m.,
Celebration of Yemaya with ocean pilgrimage, Daughters of the Goddess (Dianic),
San Francisco CA


Canberra, 10 a.m.most Saturday mornings, Meditation. The Goddess Shrine, Temple of Lunation Magick
(White Gum Valley): Mondays, 6 p.m.,
Chalice Ceremony, Daughters of Ishtar.

Sudbury: 1st Friday (Sept.-June) 7:30 p.m., Sudbury Women's Circle.
Hamilton: Saturdays, 4-6 p.m. Open Classes ; gather 6:30-7 p.m. Open Circles , Hamilton Temple, Wiccan Church of Canada.

Soderhamn, Mondays, 7-9 p.m., meditation prayer, conversation, Gudinne Templet.

Arlington VA: 3rd Sunday of month, gather 12:45 p.m., ritual 1 p.m. Moonfire CUUPS.
Baltimore MD
: Sundays 10 a.m., Rites of Cafeina,
Cedar Light Grove (ADF)
Geyersville CA: Sunday Services 2-4 p.m. Temple of Isis
Houston TX: Sundays, 10 a.m. Magdalene Community, Rothko Chapel; Mondays at Noon, Christian feminist theology study group ; 1st &3rd Fridays at Noon, Group studying Gospel of Mary, Brigid's Place, Christ Church Cathedral.
Irvine CA: Sunday Services: 1st Service at 9:30 a.m. inward, meditative; 2nd service at 11 a.m., dancing, drumming, singing; see dates for guest speakers. Goddess Temple of Orange County,
Mt. Horeb WI: Goddess Circle, Thursdays 7-8:30 p.m., Circle Sanctuary.
Portland OR: Rituals at new and full moons, quarters and cross-quarters. Full Circle Temple , Tuesdays-Sundays 10 a.m.-10 p.m. "Open to all self-identified women and girls."
Rockville MD: night before new moon, Dark Moon Book Group, Spiral Heart (Reclaiming).
San Francisco CA: Wednesdays, Christian Goddess Rosary, Ebenezer Lutheran Church; 1st Fridays, evenings at various locations, Woman's Spirituality group.
San Francisco CA: New Moon and Full Moon observances, Maa Batakali Cultural Mission.
West Concord MA: 1st Monday, 7-9 p.m.
Women's Circles; other ongoing groups include Demeter & Persephone's Circle for mothers and daughters; Council of Mother Bears; Menopause As Spiritual Journey; Menarche, for mothers and Daughter, at Women's Well.

We'll be happy to add your Goddess and spiritual feminist events (and those you know about that are open to the public) no matter where in the world they are. Leave a comment with your event, giving: Name of event, sponsoring organization (if any), town, date, time (if known), and, required: url of website where person can get more info. (Do NOT give street addresses, phone numbers or email addresses. People should go to the website to get that info.) We plan to publish an Events Coil every month.


Thursday, July 05, 2007

Where Are We Now?


While we were out partying, Medusa Coils passed her first blogerversary (or is it bloggerbday?). Our first post, "Why are We Here?" , appeared July 1, 2006. We’ve accomplished many of the goals we set for ourselves and plan to continue doing what we’re doing. In that first post, we stated our intent to:

counter a trend many of us have noticed in the last few years: A tendency to downplay the contributions of spiritual feminist scholars, including Goddess authors. We are also here to provide information about other concerns of people involved in modern feminist Goddess religions and spiritual paths, including the various permutations now snaking through some Jewish and Christian circles.
....to try to give you the real story on writings and other statements that are critical of Goddess claims, concepts, practices, particularly when it's done in a way that distorts them.
We’ve begun to do the this, and a good example of the latter is our review of an otherwise excellent book by William Dever.

That first post continues:

We also plan to point out writing that takes concepts from Goddess or feminist theological writings but fails to credit them as such....We will be particularly critical of writing that ignores the Goddess or feminist sources of ideas it espouses while at the same time putting down modern Goddess religion or spiritual feminism.
An example of this is our review of a Tikkun article by Shaul Magid

We continued:

We also plan to help readers find articles and information...and give you information about Goddess groups in various geographical locations. We are particularly interested in groups that have incorporated as religious non-profits and/or who have a building dedicated to Goddess use.
Our posts on Goddess Temples, our mini-reviews of Goddess e-zines, our monthly Buzz Coils pointing you to posts of interest on other blogs, and our monthly Events Coils, giving links to event info world-wide are significant strides on this path.

OK. Enough of us patting ourselves on the back. Pass the Birthday Cake, please.

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