The challenge for women coming into their power today, is to bring the feminine values of nurture and care to governance, instead of internalizing the patriarchy or assuming the agendas of Empire. If the egalitarian principles of matriarchal culture and the worldview of inter-connectedness were reinstated today, the benefits would apply to all people. And the evolution of our species may depend on the shift toward feminine values of balance, reciprocity, equity, grassroots democracy, negotiation, peacemaking, unconditional love, intuition and nature connection.
On a cautionary note, with roots in Neo-Pagan and Wicca practice, Goddess Spirituality has also flourished within the canon of New Age Capitalism, and the many texts and tools in this corner of the self-help marketplace reflect the pervasive commodification and appropriation of Indigenous Knowledge (IK). The modern Goddess Spirituality movement encourages women to work with any Goddess deity, Goddess metaphor or Goddess energy from any cultural tradition they choose, and rituals, petitions and pathworking can remove the deity from the originating culture or epistemology, in newly-created narratives. By taking the particular Goddess out of context, and revising or fabricating the traditions and sacred knowledge of the “other” for the monetary gain of selling books or conducting workshops, Goddessians are dominating the IK of specific cultures and practicing cultural appropriation.
Or, if you must reference the Goddesses of Turtle Island First Nations and other Indigenous communities, be sure to cite genuine mythologies from authentic Indigenous scholars and storytellers themselves, and be discerning that these narratives are not Neo-Pagan or New Age versions that have been absorbed, whitewashed, “painted-up” and reflected back (which can happen).
For Goddess Studies scholars who are aligned with the principles of uncolonization, deconstructing whiteness and reclaiming their own ethnoautobiography, the work they present to the Goddess Feminist public could easily be prefaced by saying, "You really need to be focused on honoring the Goddesses of your own ancestral tradition(s)."
We are surrounded by the treasures of Old Europe - let's delve in!
Spirituality (and a Cautionary Tale)" that appeared in the anthology
She Rises: Why Goddess Feminism, Activism and Spirituality?
from MAGO Books
Pegi Eyers is the author of "Ancient Spirit Rising: Reclaiming Your Roots & Restoring Earth Community," an award-winning book that explores strategies for uncolonization, social justice, ethnocultural identity, building land- emergent community and resilience in times of massive change.