For centuries, Goddess worship has been looked down upon as an uneducated practice. Yet, following the history of religion throughout the world, we find that Goddess worship was standard practice. The Mother was ultimately reduced to nothing more than a momentary figure once patriarchal religion overtook the world. The importance of women was and often continues to be minimized. Stay at home mothers are often disrespected despite their important decision to raise their children. Working women with children are often guilted and shamed by society and their professional contemporaries. Girls are raised in a society that tells them that they can (and should) have it all. They find out all too quickly that they are but merely human and that no one can accomplish everything. Women who choose not to marry or have children are often considered broken in some way. Regardless of the choices that women make, patriarchal religion most often equates gender with ability. And it all started when men made the decision to minimize the existence of the Divine Mother.
The Confusing Message Sent by Christianity
There are many contradictory messages set forth by Christianity. That is not to say that all Christians are bad or evil or up to no good. In fact, most don’t know the Bible very well – and if you show them the Bible? They still won’t believe you. And they won’t believe solely because you have given them a viewpoint that is…contradictory to what they think or blindly believe.
Christianity, as a whole, tries to broadcast a message of traditional family values: two parent home, adorable children, and everyone is happy. Dad is in charge. Happy, happy, happy. Now, of course, if dad is a good guy and mom doesn’t mind, there’s no real issue. We at AGS believe that if your home life makes you and your family happy, by all means – do carry on. One of our main tenets is that peace, love, and giving start in the home.
Man is supposedly made in God’s image. Man is gifted with a woman – because it is not good for man to be alone. Yet, if man is made in God’s image and it is not good for one to be alone, it is then clear that the Goddess was removed from the scene. So, the patriarchal ideology behind Christianity expects you to believe that there is an ideal family unit and although you are made in the image of Deity, Deity does not conform.
The Christian ideal of God is setup as an angry single father with earthly children. He made the decision to be a free range parent in the hopes that the kids would make good decisions, and decided that if these new people screwed up, they would be eternally punished.
Would you punish your grandchildren or your great-grandchildren for something that your children did when they were exploring and learning? No. They’re separate beings. Frankly, if you heard about your best friend punishing her grandchild for something her adult child did during adolescence, you’d be right to suggest that she get psychological help. Because that’s not healthy.
The removal of the Divine Mother and the subsequent portrayal of a continually angry Divine Father has continued to minimize the role of women. In many countries, women have the same rights as men, but that doesn’t mean we’re necessarily equals. This isn’t meant in a “give women special treatment” kind of way. It means that if a woman is the breadwinner and their partner stays home (regardless of gender), both should be treated with the same respect as what is considered the norm. It means if a woman doesn’t want to get married or have children, she still has inherent value. It means that women are seen as autonomous adults who are taken seriously in doctors’ offices and are able to make their own decisions regarding health, reproduction, and in every other area of their life. It means that little girls are raised with self-worth that isn’t based on the commercials for beauty products and whether a boy likes them.
Being about the Mother’s Business
American Goddess Society is a group whose goal it is to be about the Mother’s business. It is about encouraging education, self-worth, and love. Those of us who understand the importance of depicting a Divine Mother alongside the Divine Father (to represent all of the energy available and not just part of it). We are about doing good works for our families, our communities, and society.
We aren’t here to convert anyone. You can believe what you want as long as you aren’t hurting anyone else. We’re just here to do what other religions are supposed to be doing: caring, loving, and giving because it is the right thing to do and not because we think someone should worship a certain way or believe certain things.
We are going about the Divine Mother’s business of helping.
Tenets of American Goddess Society
- Every person born has worth. Worth isn’t attached to gender, mental abilities, or physical abilities.
- Your purpose in life depends on you. We all have hardships. We all have challenges. We all have gifts and limitations. Your purpose in life depends on the actions that you take. Maybe you give happiness to the world with your art. Maybe you feed those who are hungry. Maybe you adopt. While the ultimate purpose in life is to reduce suffering, how you do it depends on who you are.
- Love and peace start with you. You are still worthy of love even if you don’t love yourself. Yet, it is important to learn to love yourself. That is where true peace resides. Your self-worth isn’t tied in what you do for others. It isn’t tied to your profession or your gender.
- Love and peace extends into your family. The easiest place to start extending love and peace is with your family. Often, many people treat total strangers better than they do their own family. However, being loving and being a peacemaker in your family should not make you a doormat. Boundaries are still a necessity. Without wondering what others will do to reciprocate, ask yourself what is one thing that you could do for someone in your family today?
- Reaching into our communities. The only way that we can amass change is to reach into our communities. It means that we tutor. We help our neighbors. We help those who are hungry. We stand up for injustice.