Chattering Mind

Chattering Mind

Paging Jane Fonda! Naomi Wolf Needs Support!

The Web is alive with talk about how Jewish author and feminist Naomi Wolf (the advisor who rightly told Al Gore he needed to access his “alpha” male) has seen Jesus!

Yes, the fabulous author of “The Beauty Myth” (a 1991 critique of the beauty industry for making women feel insecure about their attractiveness) told Scotland’s Glasgow Sunday Herald that while in therapy for a troubling writer’s block, she had a waking dream in which she sat next to Jesus. Only she wasn’t herself in the vision, she was a 13-year-old boy.


“I actually had this vision of Jesus, and I’m sure it was Jesus,” said Wolf. “But it wasn’t this crazy theological thing; it was just this figure who was the most perfected human being that there could be – full of light and full of love.”

“There are a lot of people out there just waiting for some little Jewish feminist to cross over,” she goes on to say. “I don’t claim to get where this being fits into the scheme of things, but I absolutely believe in divine providence now, absolutely believe God totally cares about every single one of us intimately.”

This revelation has thrown everyone in America back, it seems, to the days when Joan of Arc heard voices. Wait a second…that was in France. Closer to home, how about the time Hillary Clinton, through the guidance of Jean Houston, talked to Eleanor Roosevelt?


Like Clinton, Wolf is being castigated right and left. Rosa Brooks of the Los Angeles Times writes:

“…we Americans have always been enthusiastic about religion. Speaking in tongues? We can do that. Visions and fainting fits? We can produce entire revival camps full of synchronized fainters. Don’t like your old religion? We got a new one. Found Jesus while you were temporarily inhabiting the body of a 13-year-old boy? Not a problem, Naomi. We’ve got a church for you somewhere.”

I find this snide tone so unfortunate. My first questions for Wolf would be: “Was Jesus all energy and light, or did he actually assume a human form? Did he have long hair and dark skin? Would you mind writing this up for Beliefnet? For God’s sake, why didn’t you come to us with this in the first place?”


“Wolf emphasised that her spiritual renewal strengthened her commitment to feminism as her life mission,” says the Herald. “‘I believe that each of us is here to help repair the world,’ she said. ‘My particular mission seems to be about helping women remember what’s sacred about them or what’s sacred about femininity.'”

Hallejulah! I’ve seen her speak. She is gutsy. She was the first major feminist, after all, who said after her first pregnancy that she was rethinking her stand on abortion because as she’d held a life within her, she realized that it was a life, and it would have been murder to abort it. I loved her for that.

Feminists today are still refusing to cut a deal on partial birth, taking John Kerry down with them by insisting he hew hard to a 100 percent pure abortion stand. I learned from Wolf that I can lament all that, and still be pro-choice. Perhaps she will now have a role in brokering some nuanced views between the religious right and left, but sadly, I feel that she’s going to have to fight for her credibility with the mainstream press.


Here’s the bottom line: We shouldn’t ridicule anyone’s religious transitions or spiritual experiences. Salvador Dali had it right in his paintings: the world of the spirit sometimes look like it’s on LSD. In fact, that’s why some seekers of the ’60s took mind-altering drugs, so they could access the spirit world more readily. The poet William Blake–and many, many other religious people over the course of human history have had uncanny visions and visitations. Everybody’s experience is different, with its own twists and bits of absurdity.

Personally, I haven’t had my Jesus experience yet. An angelic Barbara Bush once appeared to me in a dream to tell me that she’d changed every light bulb in my dreary apartment-building hallway. She thought “the way” had been too long and dark for me. And once, while listening to a marvelous preacher named Gordon Cosby
in Washington, D.C., the lights in the sanctuary began to bend and warp. I took this as a realization that I was listening to a very holy man.

And you don’t think I’m nuts, right?

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posted January 31, 2006 at 8:22 pm

People experience the Divine in as many different ways as possible. If this is what she saw- and how she turns in her spirituality, then I saw bravo for her. More people should be gutsy enough to stand up for what they believe in.>

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posted February 1, 2006 at 1:06 am

That’s all well and good, but no Jew should applaud another Jew’s embracing a different religion, especially Christianity.>

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posted February 1, 2006 at 1:35 am

First of all, I think it’s still jumping to conclusions to say that Wolf is “embracing a different religion.” If I thought I saw Jesus in some goofy or “enlightened” state, I wouldn’t just up and go to church, but maybe that’s just me. 😛 I agree with Brooks and other writers that Americans are way too eager to jump on the the feel-good, “vision”-based approach to faith. Also, I once covered a speech of Wolf’s for a newspaper, and I didn’t come away with a great impression of her. She seemed, frankly, kind of outdated in her supposedly progressive “feminist” thinking.>

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posted February 1, 2006 at 3:55 am

God is always reaching out to people in God’s own way and time. This goes for everyone. I am glad she feels blessed to have had this experience, and wish her well on the rest of her journey through this life.>

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posted February 1, 2006 at 1:16 pm

Isn’t Barbara Bush still alive? …Whatever. God bless!>

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posted February 1, 2006 at 7:40 pm

I would just like to add that we, as in society, will believe anything. We believe that the government is covering up a secret location called Area 51 to hide extraterrestrials. We believe that people have spotted Elvis a time or two since he has departed this Earth. Why is it so wrong to believe that Wolf has seen Jesus and even had an encounter with Him? Frankly, if you ask me, this one is more believable than them all, at least Jesus is real. My only advice to Wolf is that she do not allow anyone to crticize her for her beliefs and to PRAY and ask Jesus what is next for her. We should embrace these things and not criticize them.>

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posted February 2, 2006 at 2:11 am

Thank you for sharing your experience with Gordon Cosby. He is a true, living Saint. He and the deep Christian communities he has and is nurturing deserve much greater attention.>

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sacred cow

posted February 3, 2006 at 11:08 pm

Religious experience is nothing without religious visions. People who believe God= words written about God are victims of ancient men’s minds. God is God of the living, not the dead. Only the living experience of God is spiritually valid so, yes, I applaud Naomi Wolf’s vision of the spiritually most powerful of all heavenly intercessors, the Spirit of Christ. Perhaps sheep’s clothing fits this particular wolf.>

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Barbara J Gill

posted September 16, 2006 at 11:52 am

I know that wonderful things can happen when the Seretonin kicks in – when we feel that quiet inside, when we allow ourselves to see the beauty found in nature or listen to the strains of music that have been inspired. It is certainly possible that Naomi Wolf had an encounter with “Jesus Christ” as she knows and understands him. I saw Big Bear and Rumba Bear when I had cancer. Rumba Bear came along to dance with my foot- long tumour and escort it away. And he did. :>) Five years ago. It was not a thought process but rather an experience. I believe it evolved in part due to the fact I fell asleep with the chant Om Namah Shivay that replayed throughout the night. I woke to it and this is when I had the experience with Rumba Bear. A rare cancer Liposarcoma. When the surgeon asked if he could remove it rather than biopsy first I said yes. I knew it was the right thing to do because of the experience with Rumba Bear. Sound crazy? I’m healthy :>) Barbara>

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