You are all aware by now that, as a sociology student, I got deeply into a focused analysis of all things female, sexual, gendered, sexist, and feminist along with most permutations that surround those topics. I also came out, if you will, and clearly announced that I am an atheist. I am an atheist because science tells me that a supreme deity does not exist. I identify as an atheist because I am a feminist as well, although those two ‘ist’ identities are not mutually exclusive for many. I define as a feminist-atheist because I truly will not abide with the idea professed by many belief systems that a deity set down in writing various declarations that codify males to be the only privileged and superior beings on earth.
Before this becomes a debate about religious text, or interpretation of those texts, or myth versus fact, or literal versus figurative; before this sparks comments whereby I am enlightened on ‘true’ or ‘real’ teachings and meanings; before I find myself needing to defend my words; before those of you who do believe, who do follow a religious or spiritual system, who may choose to take offense with this post – please understand:
I am not asking anyone to convince me to believe or change my mind. I am not asking anyone to agree with my viewpoint or my non-belief or opinions. I am not trying to tell you that you are wrong, or crazy, or confused.
I am simply questioning, wondering, and noting that this post is merely an introduction to the topic of religion, spirituality, belief, atheism, and feminism. I can be an atheist and still be interested in learning about religion and belief systems. I can be a feminist and still be interested in learning about other viewpoints associated with women, and gender, and oppression, and race, and sex, and…
I am, in fact, very interested in learning more about religion and its place in our society. I have read the Bible, more than once. I chose to take basic classes in religion while I was a student. I have chosen to read and study differing viewpoints on religion. I have written about feminism and atheism and religion along with the how and why they all may come together. I have been asked to comment on, and blog about topics specific to the place of feminism among religious systems and beliefs.
However, I feel that I am woefully lacking in preparation to do this, specifically to do this well, yet the idea fascinates me because religion plays such a key role in virtually every society on this planet, and feminism is a force that must also address the role that religion plays among all women, rather subscriber or atheist, or those who consider themselves searching somewhere in between.
I am at a crossroads, thus the reason for this post. Perhaps this topic is one best left for my personal research, and reflection. Perhaps, as I read more it can be a topic that is shared here. Perhaps, if anyone is interested they could share their opinions, or resources. Perhaps this will be the first, and last mention, of this idea.
While I ponder over the path that these topics may take on this blog I have a few texts specific to feminism and religion waiting to be read. I have essays in many of my old sociology and WGSS textbooks that may provide insight. I welcome conversation and opinion from others that advances relevant discussion. Let’s see if I can pull together some thoughts and provide some general posts that can serve as a springboard. Let’s see where this may lead.
For today, I want to share this article with you.
I found it very interesting. As someone who has rather biased views regarding Catholicism, I am choosing not to add my thoughts now. I’d like to see if anyone responds in the comments and shares their reactions. We’ll give it a few days, then revisit this page.