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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in book reviews

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_June-2016-052.JPGAs someone who comes to goddess spirituality from a feminist thealogy perspective, I have found it important to distinguish between the lineage and history of goddess spirituality and that of contemporary paganism as a broader and larger movement. While the roots of goddess spirituality are indeed entwined with paganism and Wicca, there is still a distinct “herstory” of the goddess movement in the United States, as well as qualities, traditions, values, perspectives, and tenants within it that are worthy of consideration on a stand-alone basis.

The Goddess in America, forthcoming from Moon Books this fall, is a highly recommended anthology of insightful essays about the meaning, role, goddess in americaexpression, and experience of the Goddess in the United States. This is not a 101 or introductory book, but rather a complex exploration of a variety of topics including cultural appropriation, differences between feminist goddess spirituality and Wicca, contemporary priestessing, pop culture goddesses, goth goddesses, polytheism vs monotheistic concepts (i.e .the difference between “all goddesses as one” and each goddess as an individual), goddesses and the land and whether goddesses can be “transported” to other locations/lands, and much more. The book contains contributions from nineteen writers with diverse perspectives and experiences and it identifies the “enduring experience of Goddess Spirituality through a four-part discussion focused on the Native Goddess, the Migrant Goddess, the Goddess in relation to other aspects of American culture (Feminism, Christianity, Witchcraft, etc.) and the Goddess in contemporary America.” As someone who loves books, I believe that anthologies are possibly one of the greatest inventions of all time. Indeed, the only problem I had with this book was that the writers were so talented and have written so many other interesting books, that my to-read bookshelf now becoming even more extensive!

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Wild Goose Chase for the Name Aurkonungr

I started my quest to find the name or word Aurkonungr while reviewing Lecouteux’s new Encyclopedia, which has an entry for Aurkonungr saying it is a name of Honir. Some of the entries had citations to sources, but not that one. Because I had never heard of such a name for Honir, I set out to find the source. Long did I trek through the mountains up the rocky river, seeking the source, the well of wisdom, beset by skaven and… ahem, no, I sensibly got on Google, which returned 0 results. That word literally does not exist on the internet. Well, it didn’t—it does now, ironically, here in this blog post.

Members of the American Asatru Association’s Facebook discussion group helped me track down where Lecouteux was most likely to have gotten the word from. Although aurkonungr does not appear on the net, there is exactly one return for a reasonable variation of the word, árkonungr: “et, que Ynglingasaga qualifie plusieurs rois de árkonungr, gódr árkonungr, roi, bon roi à moissons” from Tripertita: fonctionnels chez divers peuples indo­européens by Georges Dumézil.  This word is only written that way in French. In Icelandic texts, it's written as two words, ár konungr. 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Carl Gustav Lindstrom
    Carl Gustav Lindstrom says #
    Ah ok - I wasn't sure if it was the latter, or a combination of the two.
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    You're welcome. This isn't a web host site, it's the website of a company that publishes magazines.
  • Carl Gustav Lindstrom
    Carl Gustav Lindstrom says #
    Hello, Ok - Yeah I was not selected, but at the same time I did not know how to get in touch with her. I did not quite understan
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    Hi Carl, if Anne has selected you to be one of the pagansquare bloggers, you should have received instructions on how to do it.
  • Carl Gustav Lindstrom
    Carl Gustav Lindstrom says #
    Hello Erin Lale, I hope you don't mind me asking for your help here. I just joined this site and it doesn't seem to be very user
Food for the Soul: Three Goddess Anthologies

With the holidays coming in just a few weeks, I bet you're thinking of the presents you'd like to buy--whether for loves ones or for yourself. For me there's no gift better than a good book. Books are food for the soul, precious companions on our life journeys. Honoring the magical number three, as well as the multitude of voices that speak about the Sacred Feminine, allow me to share with you my three favorite anthologies:

 

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

“As I continue writing stories about people who are transforming religion and culture through including the Divine Feminine in sacred rituals, hope stirs within me. As I hear their visions for the future of the Divine Feminine, my vision expands.”

–Jann Aldredge-Clanton, Healing, Freedom, and Transformation through the Sacred Feminine.

“…monotheists have described the divine as ‘Father’ for over 2,000 years. Even if we neutered the God, to be labeled only an ‘It,’ we would still have the masculine echo ringing in our ears for another thousand years. So maybe it would make sense to call her the Goddess for a millennium or so, if only to even things out. Then perhaps we could move on to something more gender inclusive.”

–Tim Ward, Why Would a Man Search for the Goddess

“I don’t believe the Goddess is stupid or suicidal. I believe she evolved human beings for a purpose, to be her healing hands and loving heart. We may be growing into the job.”

–Starhawk, Earth, Spirit, and Action: Letting the Wildness In 

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Review of Ch. 1 in Triumph of The Moon

As a way to keep the blog flowing (and supplement a new project Ill share with you soon!) I'm rereading Ronald Hutton's Triumph of The Moon. I'm placing here summaries of the chapters for reference and easy reading for any of you who don't have the book. 

Ronald Hutton’s Triumph of The Moon, undertakes the task of tracing the developments of contemporary paganism and witchcraft as it originated in the English speaking nations of Europe and their influences. His first chapter, “Finding A Language” is a necessary foundation for the reader, supplying and clarifying a vocabulary with which the rest of the book uses and sets the historical framework within which the events examined take place. Hutton superbly mingles witty observations with historical records and cultural paradigms to produce, not merely definitions, but a working understanding of how and why the terms came to be.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Book Review: Naming the Goddess

“On any spiritual path, and most especially on one that is simultaneously a path of magical practice, our real progress and growth is measurable largely in the capacity to pass the challenges that are set before us. The easy parts of the journey are not the most important.”

–Philip Kane (in his essay on Laverna, Naming the Goddess, p. 232)

Naming the Goddess, published by Moon Books, is a collaborative work bringing together essays written by over eighty scholars and practitioners of Goddess Spirituality, including contributions from Selena Fox, Kathy Jones, Caroline Wise and Rachel Patterson. A unique aspect of this book is that it is a two-part project with the first part of the book containing a series of contemplative and scholarly essays and the second part serving as a “gazetteer” of different goddesses, making it useful both as a reference book and as well as one that encourages reflective spiritual thought.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

A few months back, I wrote a post about proper book review etiquette. Most of it was common sense stuff: be polite, be fair, point out the good aspects and the bad. Well, I apparently forgot one obvious point of etiquette:

Use the book review space to write an actual review.

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