Explore the Divine Feminine with the Goddess Group

The Goddess Group is a circle of women who are exploring their inner goddess through appreciation and participation in the arts, everything from crafts to fine art, to gardening and nature walks, to singing and dancing and drumming, to reading and writing, to cooking and sewing.  The group formed following study of the Unitarian Universalist Association’s curricula about thealogy (the study of the feminine aspect of the Divine, i.e. the Goddess), “Cakes for the Queen of Heaven” and “Rise Up and Call Her Name.”  Ritual, conversation, sharing, and caring are part of the group’s ongoing ministry to each other.

Meeting Time and Schedule

The group typically meets the third Sunday, at 1:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall. For more information on The Goddess Group, contact Myrna Adams West, Lay Minister Emerita, at myrnaaw@bellsouth.net  or 770/725-5397,  Vivian Preston Sellers, Lay Minister for Lifespan Development, at lifespan2@uuathensga.org, or Aleta Turner, Lay Minister Emerita, at aletamosquito@gmail.com.

Please note: Occasionally it is necessary to change the meeting times because of other activities at the Fellowship. Myrna will try to let you know in plenty of time when that is going to happen.

 

Next Course Offering, Rise Up & Call Her Name, Part 2, January-July 2017

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Rise Up & Call Her Name:  A Woman-Honoring Journey into Global Earth-Based Spiritualities is a journey of thought and activity.  It carries numerous qualities.  Most important among these are–

  • Bringing awareness of the processes of nature into our contemporary spiritual life
  • Nurturing self-respect in women and respect for women in men by making known the range of emotions and actions attributed to female deities and the respect accorded them in many spiritual traditions
  • Expanding respect for Earth-based spiritual traditions as well as the Earth-honoring aspects of several well-known religious belief systems
  • Opening doors to cross-cultural interaction by fostering an appreciation for the richness of diversity

January 15, 2017, Session 7: Asia—Carolina Lane, Facilitator: Moving through Asia we stop in Tibet and China and meet the popular Goddesses Tara and Kwan Yin, becoming familiar with some of the female-honoring aspects of Buddhism and Taoism. These religions teach us that compassion is an important quality to develop and that direct experience of the sacred, which is sometimes called intuition, is of considerable value. Many of the teachings of these traditions also emphasize that, when acting, it is important not to be attached to the outcome, but rather to be concerned with integrity.

February 19, 2017, Session 8: Japan—Kathy Mason, Facilitator: Culminating our Asian visit, we arrive on the islands of Japan and encounter the Shinto Goddess Amaterasu and her lessons of self-empowerment. We learn from the tale of her withdrawal and then return to society that our impact on our communities can be significant even though, at times, it is difficult to accept the behavior of others.

March 19, 2017, Session 9: Central & North America—Leigh Harvey, Facilitator: Next we move toward Central and North America. We first land in Hawaii and contact Pele, the exciting Goddess of the volcano. Here we acknowledge the ties between ecology and Earth-based spirituality and consider how the processes of the Earth are held sacred by some indigenous peoples.

April 16, 2017, Session 10–Barbara McLaughlin, Facilitator: Arriving in MesoAmerica, we meet the Goddess Tonantzin who is at the core of contemporary devotion to the Mexican Virgin of Guadalupe. We also discover the ancient Goddess Corn Mother and meditate upon the ways the fruits of our harvest become the seeds of our future undertakings.

May 21, 2017, Session 11—Rosemary Wood, Facilitator: We next touch the roots of the First Peoples of the Americas through the stories and masks of a Lakota Sacred Pipe Woman. We discover the North American continent is steeped in ancient female-honoring traditions as we encounter the American Indian Goddess White Buffalo Calf Woman.

June 18, 2017, Session 12 Vivian Preston Sellers, Facilitator:  Still visiting the First Peoples of the Americas, we meet Spider Woman and Changing Woman. We also consider sacred truths sometimes come directly to individuals if they are able to recognize them.

July 16, 2017, Session 13—Myrna Adams West, Facilitator: Knowing that we must return to our everyday lives, yet realizing how we have changed, we share what we have learned and explore where we wish to go from here.

Please Note:  Background readings for sessions of Rise Up & Call Her Name will be sent as email attachments during the month preceding the gathering.  Please email Myrna if you wish to be added to the Rise Up email list.

Projects and Activities

August 20-November 19:  Fun Activities to be decided; email Myrna with your ideas and suggestions
December 17:  Thirteenth Annual Holiday Tea with the Goddess; reservations required

Current Outreach Project:  End-of-the-year Holiday gifts for a DFACS girl

Periodic Sunday Services on the Goddess:  From time to time the Goddess Group presents a Sunday Service honoring the Goddess (such as Earth Day or Mother’s Day) or presents a service to share what has been learned in the study of the Goddess.

Other Course Offerings 

Cakes for the Queen of Heaven Part 1:  In Ancient Times & Part 2:  On the Threshold:  Courses created for those who are interested in exploring women’s religious history, the discussion focuses on significant religious issues of Judaism and Christianity, and access to power; describing the ways in which these issues have affected our culture.  Attitudes derived from religious philosophy and beliefs have had a profound effect on interpersonal relationships among women and men and on family patterns.  They have had an equally profound effect on the power structures of all the institutions in our society.  This program provides a vehicle by which adults may examine the historical roots of these phenomena and move toward affecting change in our society where that is judged to be desirable and necessary.

Becoming Women of Wisdom:  Marking the Passage into the Crone Years:  This new thirteen-circle curriculum is designed to prepare women to take on the important role of Wise Women in their communities.  Becoming a Wise Woman takes time and can be enriched by being in dialogue with other women.  The creators of this curriculum have developed a process that involves monthly gatherings to explore what it means to become a crone, culminating in a ritual celebrating our new status as Women of Wisdom.  The curriculum is designed to open participants to the power, wisdom, and insight of the mature self and to challenge us to use our wisdom for the good of the world through action and compassion.