Saturday, 28 February 2009

Woman, Church and State: Chapter 1 The Matriarchate

Chapter 1:The Matriarchate

"... the most grievous wrong ever inflicted upon woman has been in the Christian teaching that she was not created equal with man, and the consequent denial of her rightful place in Church and State." page 12
"The whole ancient world recognized a female priesthood..." page 42
Since earliest society was composed of mothers and their children banding together and men were on the periphery, females dominated every aspect of society: family, government, religion.
The earliest "Supreme Beings" were Goddesses, not Gods; later, male gods were inferior to female goddesses while the most widely worshipped god/goddess in antiquity (Egypt & classical Rome) was Isis. The following were attributed to Isis: (pages 30 and 31)

decreed the earliest laws, through whose teaching the people had risen from barbarism to civilization
taught the art of making bread which had previously grown wild and unused
taught the science of medicine
invented embalming
established their literature
founded their religion
responsible for creating Egyptian civilization
References in the original Hebrew (Old Testament) and Greek (New Testament) to the female component of God were removed by later Christian writers.
Old Testament example: El Shaddai, usually translated as The Almighty, should be translated "The Breasted God" (page 45)
New Testament example: Holy Spirit is strongly feminine in Greek
Woman's degradation is attributed to the Christian/patriarchal position that God is strictly male. (God is made like man but not like woman.)

Woman, Church and State:
A Historical Account of the Status of Woman Through the Christian Ages with Reminiscences of the Matriarchate
Matilda Joslyn Gage
1893, reprinted by Arno Press Inc, 1972


No comments: