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Record Type: Review   ID: 868

The Goddess Re-Awakening: The Feminine Principle Today

Nicholson, Shirley

 This anthology of 26 chapters examines how an emphasis on the Goddess or a divine feminine principle might affect us in the present. An important question dealt with is how, as Merlin Stone puts it, "Goddess, as representative of the feminine principle, might differ from God as representative of the masculine principle" (p. 7). This, at base, leads to the question of how gender stereotypes have arisen. Stone nevertheless testifies to the burgeoning of women's spirituality today, which incorporates each woman's own creativity. She notes some emerging patterns, such as no intermediaries between the individual and Goddess; the immanence, rather than the transcendence, of Goddess is emphasized; Goddess is becoming viewed not anthropomorphically, as a person, but as organic process (Mother Nature, the Tao), which leads to "the sense of a direct connection with all life . . . . we are not on top of nature; we are nature" (p. 20). There is much in this volume that resonates with the view that EHEs lead to when incorporated in one's life. In a sense, perhaps exceptional experiences are indications of Goddess awakening to our life as the World. The essays are arranged in four parts: The Goddess (8 chapters), Psychological Perspectives (5 chapters), Religious and Traditional views (6 chapters), and Socio-Political Concerns (2 chapters). Some chapters were previously published and others were written for this volume. The authors of 5 selections are male. The closing essay, by Elizabeth Dodson Gray, takes a decided postmodern turn, one that valorizes imagination, in line with this Journal's aim. It is entitled "Nature as an Act of Imagination."
Publisher Information:Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1989. 280p. Chap. bibl; 1 fig; 5 illus
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