SageWoman #42 (reprint)
Magick & Politics


SageWoman #42 - Magick & Politics

"Politics and Magick? How could you even speak about those two words in the same sentence?' Thus spoke many of my readers when I announced the topic of this issue. But to me, magick and politics are natural companions, like peanut butter and jelly."

That's how I began my editorial for this issue; fifteen years later, I stand by my (metaphorical) guns. Magick/religion and politics (the two subjects I was always told to steer away from in polite conversation) are both about ideas, ideals, and, mostly, let's get real, about *power.*

This issue of SageWoman (usually a magazine that steers clear of political diatribe, even discourse) focuses on where, when, and how Goddess spirituality intersects with political action. Some, notably feminist witches like Starhawk and Z Budapest, weave these two strands of life together so tightly that they are almost inseparable. That activist point of view is reflected in several essays in this issue: "Tales of Subversive Magic" by Kathryn Theatana; Genevieve Vaughn's "My Journey with Sekhmet: Goddess of Power and Change," and Karen Ward's "The Goddess in Prison." A more reflective approach, often placing Goddess spirituality as an inspiration of political involvement without commingling the two realms directly, is represented by Naomi Gayle's "Finding Our Power," "Earth: The Bride of All Creation" by Minister Masada, and Susan Meeker-Lowery, who points out that even activists have to recharge sometime in "An Activist Listens."

Diana Paxson weaves an explicit connection between the Goddess and the American political system, complete with a ritual invocation (suitable for occasions of all kinds) in "Lady Liberty: Guardian of Freedom." (Diana returned to this theme in her cover essay for PanGaia 45 "One Nation Under Goddess.") Our other columnists also weigh in: DeAnna Alba writes about Dianic Wicca and feminism, Carol Christ describes the ethics of contemporary Goddess religion and their (to her) explicitly political ramifications, and there's even a spell to magically defeat a law, regulation or practice that discriminates against Pagans.

Even the Rattle (our reader's roundtable) gets into the act with a vigorous debate about issues that are political within the Goddess community: woman-only vs. multi-gender ritual space, "is meat murder", and the ethics of politically-specific magic. All in all, this is a rich stew of opinion, magick, and lore sure to warm the hearts of any (even-slightly) politically-active Goddess-loving woman.

96 pages, published in the Summer of 1998

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