Another sign of the end
times is the rise of the feminist movement in the 20th Century. Rising from the
Progressive Era of the early 1900's, the feminist movement was largely
influenced by the
Eugenics movement and is at the forefront of population
reduction efforts to exterminate "useless eaters".
Anarcho-communist organizer Emma Goldman theorized and advocated for an integrated philosophy of women's liberation, anti-capitalism and anti-authoritarianism. Aside from advocating free choice in sexual relations, she called for access to birth control. She served as a mentor to Margaret Sanger who went to found the American Birth Control League (which eventually became Planned Parenthood) and become an extremely visible advocate for access to family planning.
Some would say feminism is about basic human rights and that it's just a modern social movement. The truth is, the feminist movement is neither modern nor social in its origin. At its roots are ancient, highly religious elements that are rarely, if ever, mentioned.
The spirit of radical feminism is the spirit of witchcraft and rebellion, the spirit manifested in Jezebel. It is the spirit which rejects God's lawful order and authority and tries to usurp that authority to itself, as did Eve in the Garden of Eden.
Because they build much of their thinking on humanism, leaders in the feminist movement have no place for God. Gloria Steinem says of feminism that "the bottom line is that self-authority is the single most radical idea there is and there is a real hunger for putting the personal and the external back together again." The New Age agenda of transforming society is apparent in her thinking, "The point is for people to empower themselves," she says. She was also quoted as saying, "By the year 2,000, we will, I hope raise children to believe in human potential, not God."
Feminist leaders easily fit what the apostle Paul warned about ... saying false teachers can often be identified by their opposition or indifference to the essential truths of the gospel.
"They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth--men of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected. But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those men, their folly will be clear to everyone." [2 Timothy 3:1-8]
The false teachers of feminism teach a false lifestyle of
unrighteousness. They prey on weak-willed women - unstable women who are guilt
ridden because of their sins, torn by lust, and victims of various false
teachers ("always learning," but never coming to a saving knowledge of Christ).
A large number of feminists are victims of childhood abuse and are bitter
toward men. Their 'guilt' is associated somehow with the false belief that they
are responsible for their abuse. Rather than receiving the forgiving grace of
Jesus, most of these women have bought into the lie perpetrated by false
teachers that they are 'emancipated' and as a result are unable to function in
a healthy relationship with a man. Is it any surprise the majority of women in
NOW are lesbians?
Many of those involved in the Feminist Movement may sincerely believe it is a political crusade to gain equality with men. Feminists teach women to see themselves as oppressed, and then make sure to blame it all on men and patriarchal society. At the 1998 ReImagining conference women were encouraged to express the divine reality that is locked deep within their identities by sharing their stories. Special emphasis was placed on telling stories of abuse, defilement, and repression, the kinds of stories that evoke what conference leader Rita Nakashima Brock, called "holy outrage."
Women are taught how to reshape who they are to better give of their gifts and talents through the feminist movement. Then they can attack it from another direction: They can elevate their self-esteem by remembering who they really are.
If you resist the movement, you are labeled as chauvinistic, bigoted, or just don't really understand what feminists are all about.
Who are they really? Goddesses who have been forced into amnesia by
primitive white men trying to keep them from their true potential. Feminism is
in fact a spiritual movement based partly on reawakening of "goddess
consciousness," and its real goal is matriarchy, not equality.
Consider the spiritual advice feminist O.H.P. Belmont gave one young woman: "Call on God my dear. She will help you." Another feminist, Rosalind Miles had her own version of the Genesis 1:1 account: "In the beginning, as humankind emerged from the darkness of prehistory, God was a woman. And what a woman!"
The ultimate symbol of the patriarchy is a male God - the Father. In response, feminists at the National Council of Churches pushed through a unisex version of the Bible in which God is "our father and mother in heaven." and Jesus Christ is not the "Son of God," but the "child of God." The St. Hilda Community (an offshoot of the Church of England's Movement for the Ordination of Women) are not rewriting Christian creeds, but replacing them with stuff such as, "We believe in the presence of God in the world. She is our mother, source of deep wisdom ... she is our lover and is allowed to touch our pain ... she is our friend who stands alongside us." They have rewritten the Lords Prayer (depatriarchalised as "Prayer of Jesus") which reads in part, "Beloved, our Father and Mother in whom is heaven, hallowed by your name, followed by your royal way ..."
In her book Beyond God the Father, Mary Daly stated that "to exist humanly is to name the self, the world and God. The 'method' of the evolving spiritual consciousness of women is nothing less than this beginning to speak humanly - a reclaiming of the right to name." The right to name, the right to define, the right to give meaning, is at the heart of the feminist movement. Over the last decade, feminists have progressed from naming themselves - affirming and celebrating their differences from men - to naming their world - affirming and celebrating female contributions to society and religious life - to now naming God - affirming and celebrating what we as gendered people consider to be feminine aspects of the divine.
In her book Changing of the Gods, Naomi Goldenberg predicted that the continued feminist presence in religion would force a redefinition - one that would alter the very essence of Judeo-Christian belief. Goldenberg writes:
Undoubtedly, many followers of new faiths will still cling to old labels. But a merely semantic veneer of tradition ought not to hide the fact that very nontraditional faith will be practiced ... The feminist movement in Western culture is engaged in the slow execution of Christ and Yahweh. Yet very few of the women and men now working for sexual equality within Christianity and Judaism realize the extent of their heresy.
To make the leap out of the boundaries of traditional religion, feminists needed to formulate radical new images and understandings of the divine, for they would not find adequate or useful answers in the external God of Christendom. The God of traditional Christianity, Goldenberg argued, was too tainted with patriarchal dualisms - too transcendent, ultimate, universal and other. Those dualisms would need to be overcome and redeemed by feminism. The resultant God would be an internal God - a God connected to all things, a God with less distinct boundaries between creature and Creator.
Contemporary Goddess spirituality draws inspiration from all the variations of earth-based religions, including Native American Spiritism, which isn't matriarchal at all. It also embraces European nature religions (especially witchcraft), Westernized Hinduism, Chinese Taoism, Japanese Shintoism, and Buddhism whose quest for self-realization and aversion for logic fits right in. Many differences and contradictions are simply ignored. All these influences are merging and multiplying in today's self-seeking, power-hungry, post-Christian Western culture.
It is important, however, to understand what Paganism and Wicca is NOT. It is NOT devil worship, does not involve hurting or cursing people, is not Satanism, and does not involve the desecration of any traditional church's objects of veneration. The Hollywood image of blood-drinking babykillers or kooks sticking wax dolls with pins could not be further than the truth. As well, it is an image that many Wiccans and Pagans despise and must struggle against every day. Most of us are in what we call the "broom closet," and have lost apartments, jobs, and even child custody for following the most practical of all spiritualities. If you know anyone who is Wiccan or Pagan, I can assure you that that person is no threat. Indeed, our spirituality demands care and deep love for the Earth and all Her living creatures as well as complete responsibility for our actions and their consequences. Harming or causing pain to another is repugnant and out of the question for us. Far from trafficking with Satan, we are engaged in a spirituality that centers on the joyous turning of the seasons, the endless dance of the billions of components in Nature and our place in Nature. Injury or harm is out of the question, and moreover our faith does not include any personification of Evil such as the Christian Devil. [From www.io.com/~cortese/spirituality/wicca.html]
Contemporary Goddess spirituality draws inspiration from all the
variations of earth-based religions, including Native American Spiritism, which
isn't matriarchal at all. It also embraces European nature religions
(especially witchcraft), Westernized Hinduism, Chinese Taoism, Japanese
Shintoism, and Buddhism whose quest for self-realization and aversion for logic
fits right in. Many differences and contradictions are simply ignored. All
these influences are merging and multiplying in today's self-seeking,
power-hungry, post-Christian Western culture.
The feminist's internal God, as Goldenberg anticipated, would be totally antithetical to the traditional Judeo-Christian God of the Bible. Is this the God - or rather the Goddess - who has been invented or re-imagined in the person of Sophia?
New Age feminist and conference speaker Charlene Spretnak in her book, The Politics of Women's Spirituality, teaches that, according to one reviewer, "Goddess worship, paganism, Wicca, and witchcraft are all names for a form of natural religion that is centered around the mystery, sexuality, and psychic mysteries of the female. The book is a clarion call to women to regain their natural power and to overthrow the global rule of men. The author's starting point for the re-establishment of female dominance is in bringing an end to Judeo-Christian religion."
The 1971 Declaration of Feminism states, "All of history must be
rewritten in terms of the oppression of women. We must go back to ancient
female religions like witchcraft." The Minnesota chapter of NOW published an
article advocating the return to "primitive goddess worship" as a replacement
for Christianity. Indeed, not only witchcraft, but goddess worship has become a
major component of feminist activity all over the country. Margot Adler, a
modern witch, points out in Bringing Down the Moon that it is now time
for the sisters to go out and do the magic circle and summon the goddess.
Speaking at an event that The Los Angeles Times on March 16, 1982, billed as "Goddesses of Coming New Age Probe the Meaning of It All," Spretnak and other New Age feminists resolved that churches should either adopt New Age beliefs or be shut down. One backdoor approach in bringing this about is to give New Age definitions to Christian doctrinal terms (i.e. atonement means at-one-ment with the divine.)
Modern feminists are rediscovering the great goddess. Certainly nothing can seem to lift a woman's self-esteem more than becoming a goddess. That indeed appears to be one solution to "problems of self-worth and identity." To them it vindicates the feminine in a universe where too much male principle seems to be operative. If the goal is judicial equality in society, then the same alternative must be applied to the cosmos. Followers of the goddess say that a male deity must be counterbalanced with a female counterpart. It only makes sense in an era of judicial egalitarianism. It also brings back androgyny.
Starhawk, priestess of the Old Religion of the Goddess, is one of witchcraft's leading ambassadors. An instructor at Matthew Fox's Institute for Culture and Creation, she and others who share her pagan persuasions have been teaching wiccan rituals and the "positive" side of witchcraft in church groups and seminaries across the country. "Witchcraft is ... perhaps the oldest religion existent in the West," writes Starhawk in The Spiritual Dance, a manual on witchcraft which is also used in Women's Studies in colleges, universities and even in some seminaries.
Increasingly, we see the followers of Wicca, a pagan religion which worships nature, the Earth goddess and so forth gaining respect in society. Wicca followers are changing the public's perception of them. They claim thay are not Satanists because they don't even believe in Satan. Despite the fact that Wicca, another name for witchcraft, is indeed occultism, the pagan religion is gaining respect in society because of its respect for the planet and environmental concerns.
Zealous protectors of the environment, witches view the earth as the physical manifestation of the Goddess. To them, the earth is the sacred body of the goddess, whose life-force flows through everything. The model of the Goddess...fosters respect for the sacredness of all living things. Witchcraft can be seen as a religion of ecology. Its goal is harmony with nature, so that life may not just survive, but thrive.
It would appear that the feminist movement has bought the oldest lie. Like Eve, who ate the forbidden fruit at the invitation of the serpent with the promise that she would become as a god and never die, it is again women as part of the feminist movement, who has again been deceived by Satan, and is trying to pass on the forbidden fruit.