Women’s Psychospiritual Paths Before, During, and After Finding It Difficult to Pray to a Male God

  • Kathleen Mulrenin

Abstract

In this brief excerpt from a dialogue, the novelist Alice Walker (1982) captures an important shift in perspective that one woman, Shug, has already undertaken and is gently leading another woman, Celie, to consider. Shug’s perspective is that of a black woman who is aware of the use of religious images in a specific cultural context, namely, the image of a white, male God, in a white, male-dominated society. Research in cultural anthropology (Eisler, 1987; Lerner, 1986; Stone, 1976) and writings by black (Cone, 1970; Jones, 1987) and feminist theologians (Geller, 1983; Ronan, Taussig, & Cady, 1986; Spretnak, 1982) suggest that changes in images of the divine often reflect changes in individual and cultural psychologies. Jones (1987, p. ix) writes: “Especially the concept of God, when it is alien, can hold one, mind and body, in bondage to a distorted understanding of one’s own true selfhood, one’s own humanity, and in the case of Black people, the meaning of one’s own blackness.”

Keywords

Religious Tradition Male Image Mature Spirituality Faith Development Feminist Theologian 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathleen Mulrenin
    • 1
  1. 1.Butler HospitalProvidenceUSA

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