“To speak our own truth the first time feels fraught with danger. It becomes easier each time. In the bones of our collective experience as women we know there are risks. Somewhere in our souls, we remember the burning time, when women were persecuted and burned alive as witches. This went on for three hundred years of the Inquisition. In what has been referred to in contemporary times as “the women’s holocaust,” more women were burned at the stake than were killed in the Nazi gas ovens during the Holocaust in World War II. First the midwives were burned for easing the pains of childbirth (which went against the biblical injunction that women were supposed to suffer), then the healers who knew the medicinal uses of herbs, women who celebrated the seasons, eccentric women, women with possessions someone coveted, outspoken women, bright women, women without protection. This collective memory has an effect much as any personal repressed trauma does; it makes women anxious when we discover our own sacred experiences and find words for them. We need courage to bring forth what we know. Somewhere in our souls, women remember a time when divinity was called Goddess and Mother.” ~ Jean Shinoda Bolen, “Crossing to Avalon”

Artwork by Joyce Huntington

Art by Joyce Huntington

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