Sunday, March 7, 2010

Goddess Festival

The word “Goddess” is used to mean “the Feminine Divine.” The terms/titles are used interchangeably in our thoughts, print material and conversations. The concept of goddess or feminine divine predates the Bible and other patriarchal religious writings prevalent in today’s culture. We speak of the goddess or the feminine divine as a concept, as a representation of a set of qualities vs. “The Goddess.”

There is the aspect of the feminine divine in all religious traditions. We have been drawn together in the creation of this event to initiate a reversal of the patriarchal dominance in mainstream spirituality, to restore balance in the spiritual quest. It is our intention to create a safe space to explore, express, and celebrate our connection to the feminine divine.
We do not “worship.” We explore, claim, and respect divinity in the self. We are not a religion. We are not a collection of Pagans, Wiccans, or any other single identifiable structured religious group. We are not producing a “green” festival, a “women’s” festival or a “feminist/separatist” festival.
We seek to express our connection to the feminine divine through art, music, words, dance, and shared knowledge. We extend the invitation to everyone to join us in an atmosphere of respect and acceptance for all. Our mission statement: Dare to hope for spiritual wholeness in the world.
Our 2nd annual Goddess Festival in Fayetteville Arkansas has started up. This is a month long festival with workshops, an art show, vendors, music, dancing and so much more. We opened in conjunction with the First Thursday Art Walk that is held in the artist group downstairs. It was estimated that around 1000 people came thru that night. In just 1 year this festival has literally tripled in size! In workshops, vending, art, everything! There are people coming from hours away to attend the workshops and music events. This is my view of this festival, Imagine living in a place where almost everyone's beliefs are the opposite of yours, you practice at home, or with a small group of friends, quietly because your beliefs could get you fired or in some countries even killed. Then someone comes along and says "Lets celebrate for a whole month everything you believe in, openly, unchallenged and with joy and reverence!" How would you feel about that? Wouldn't you drive a distance to attend? Other religions have these festivals all the time, their children are let out of school, adults out of work to celebrate the"Recognized Holidays" We are not there yet but I think we are well on the road!

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