God was strictly male in the forties. And the males in
my life were minor demi-gods to be obeyed without question. Father,
priests, especially Monsignor, policemen, doctors–they protected me,
taught me, molded me. My teachers (grade and high school) were Catholic
nuns, but they were under the supervision and control of the priesthood.
My parents raised me with the idea that I could
be anything I wanted to be, but I was still living in a patriarchal
society. When my grades weren’t good enough for medical school, friends
said, “Why don’t you become a nurse, it’s just as good.” In the
forties, the majority of women were secretaries, nurses, teachers, and
stay-at-home wives and mothers.
The problem was, I didn’t want to be ‘just’ a
nurse. It was doctor or another field entirely. When Monsignor asked
my fourth grade class how many wanted to be priests, I put my hand up
along with all the boys. “No,” I was told, “little girls become nuns,
only boys can become priests.” When he asked how many wanted to become
nuns, I did not put up my hand. Obviously, I was listening to a
I was labeled a ‘Trouble Maker’ because I
questioned things I should have accepted on faith. Just how does Free
Will work if God already knows everything? Where do cavemen fit into
the Bible? They’re not after Adam because they're not in the Good Book.
I was told they came before, and because they were before Adam,
they did not have souls. Even at this early age, I was bothered. How
could a people who discovered fire, drew magical pictures on cave walls,
and buried their dead with grave goods not have souls? When my brother
died at nineteen and I was a very young thirteen, nuns, priests, even
God, could not heal my grief.
At the University of Missouri at Kansas City my
algebra teacher was a very moral man although he labeled himself an
atheist. This was a revelation. A person could be ‘good’ not because
he longed for Heaven, nor feared the pains of Hell, but because others
were fellow travelers on this earth and should be respected.
I received a B.A. in Psychology and minors in
Biology and Chemistry. Since there’s not much one can do with a psych
degree, I became a Social Worker in K.C.
Did I mention I married several semesters
before graduating? After six months of Social Working, Mel and I moved
to Southern California. Two apartment years later we bought a house in
Arcadia where we still live with two loving dogs and two perverse cats.
In 1990 I attended a Celtic Mythology class at
Pasadena City College while working as a chemist (go figure). What
happened was . . . I found the Goddess. More correctly, the Goddess
presented Herself to me, and I recognized Her.
The class introduced me to the prehistory of
humans and religion. A female deity had existed before the male
Biblical Yahweh! Wow!!! Everything started to make sense.
Reincarnation, Collective Unconscious, Premature Dying, Cavemen Souls,
the Sacredness of Nature. Someone told me that my brother Jerry died
because he had fulfilled his task in this lifetime. This healed my 40
year grief like nothing else had. I’m still saddened when I remember
what might have been; I may cry when I write about him, but I do not
In Celtic Mythology class I heard a woman
talking to another about trance drumming. I told her I’d like to try
it. I had to ask three times (this was even more pushy than usual for
me) before she finally said, if I read Michael Harner’s book The Way
of the Shaman, and learned how to journey on my own, then I could be
a guest at one of her drumming circles.
I did, I did, I was a guest. I still attend
this drumming circle, along with four other women. I value the insight
I receive every month from various Power Animals and my Teacher.
Around the end of 1992 this drumming sister
asked me if I’d like to go to UCLA to hear an archeologist lecture. I
said yes. She had also asked Judy Tatum. By the way, the talk was
given by Marija Gimbutas! Another introduction to the society of the
Several months later, Judy called me to see if
I’d like to write a tv script with her. By this time I had written a
book, many short stories, poems, and essays. The bottom line is that we
wrote a Star Trek, Next Generation script.
It doesn’t matter that we didn’t sell the
script, because we became friends. Then we became good friends. Then
we became best friends. Then we became Soul Sisters.
I was by her side as she transformed Deviled
Eggs into Goddess Eggs, as the Goddess told her to build a Temple.
Together, we slogged through Federal paperwork to establish the Temple
of the Goddess. I watched as Judy, now Xia, grow into her power.
I am profoundly grateful to my parents for
raising me to think for myself (even against their own beliefs), my
brother Jerry for protecting me, my sister Jackie for teaching me a work
ethic and showing me that a woman can still be independent with a
husband and five children. I am grateful for the nuns who gave me an
excellent education (brain-washing and molding aside). I am very
grateful to Dr Len Franco for informing me about Goddess Herstory.
I am profoundly grateful to the Goddess for
this incarnation. Through the Temple I have met some very strong,
intelligent women, and loving, compassionate men. I hope to shine more
light on Her so others may see the Divine Feminine residing in all of
us, female and male alike.