Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The War of the Word: Women and Religion




With the establishment of Universities in the 12th century, the role of nunneries and monasteries as educators of the world is virtually eradicated. These places only admitted men. For the next 1,300 years, all women were barred.  It wasn’t until 1920 that woman could be legally awarded a university degree. I’m sure Hilda would have been horrified.

The moment in our history inhabited by Hilda, Khadija, Aisha, and Theadora should not be called the “Dark Ages”.  This was a time of illumination, when women used the power of ancient traditions and embraced exciting new ideas to re-write the story of our world. 

By searching searching through 12,000 years of human history, I’ve discovered compelling proof that the female of the species and religion have always been inseparable.  Divine women have nurtured us with their fierce power. They’ve helped founded religions and been at the heart of our greatest civilizations. During the Dark Ages, they brought light and leadership, showing us the way forward.

Forget or ignore them and we impoverish history and ourselves.

We have to understand the connection between women and the divine because the product of that relationship over tens of thousands of years of human history has shaped the world that we live in and the lives that we all lead today.   

from “The War of the Word: Women and Religion” presented by Bettany Hughes

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