“There’s a wonderful Bible verse that says ‘… well done, good and faithful servant.’ That about says it for me. I want to know that the people I care about most in the world can move on without me because I have done my job in a way that’s made a positive impact on them.” — Gail Williamson, IN SWEET COMPANY: CONVERSATIONS WITH EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN ABOUT LIVING A SPIRITUAL LIFE
No doubt about it, there’s a renaissance going on today, a grassroots spiritual revolution spearheaded by women of all ages, faiths, and backgrounds. Women are gathering en masse to share our stories, to actively explore our options, to give and receive support. It’s time to rock and roll!
When I think about the expanding nature of women’s spirituality — this external flourishing as well as the depths women are reaching inside themselves — some words of the wonderful Jean Houston come to mind that, for me, nail what’s going on …
“Spirituality means that the way you live, move, and have your being comes forth out of the depth of Spirit, out of the resonant depths of life, instead of anything compartmentalized — or mechanistic or cerebral. It’s not determined from the outside. It’s an inner fire and passion.” — Sister Helen Prejean, IN SWEET COMPANY: CONVERSATIONS WITH EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN ABOUT LIVING A SPIRITUAL LIFE
When I was a very little girl, ill with some long forgotten childhood malady, I lay on my parents’ bed trembling with fever, dreaming I was a Model T Ford clamoring out of control on a deserted country road. I was certain I would never be able to still myself and rest.
My father sat on the edge of the bed. I cried and told him my dream. All the routine sick-child rituals failed to calm me. Unsure of what to do next, he gathered me in his arms and began to croon “Toora Loora Loora,” an old Irish lullaby. I quickly, gratefully, fell asleep.
In the years that followed …
“When you make it your goal to seek God first and attune yourself with Him … you are divinely led to what you can do for others.” — Sri Daya Mata, IN SWEET COMPANY: CONVERSATIONS WITH EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN ABOUT LIVING A SPIRITUAL LIFE
One of the unexpected benefits of writing IN SWEET COMPANY (the book) — about finding my unique note in the symphony of life and doing the work I felt called to do — was that the joy and strength I experienced working on the project made a new woman out of me.
It’s not like I opened my eyes one morning, realized I’d write about women’s spirituality, and lived happily ever after. Not a chance. True, I’d dreamed about being a writer since I was a kid — moving to New York, having everyone call me “Meg.” Many of my writerly credentials were in place: I’d published articles and stories, even a successful children’s book; I’d gotten a few degrees in psychology, and I had my share of grist for the mill “learning experiences,” the stuff of compelling copy. I believed in, and loved, “The Magic,” my childhood name for the God of my heart and had been meditating for 20+ years. The libretto for my “unique note” was written but I had not put the words to music. Honestly, I simply did not have the courage to sing my note. I was a classic case of the “repression of the sublime.”
I needed a little push ….
[Spirituality] “isn’t just about getting into the presence of God, because we’re in that presence all the time. The central question is ‘How can I fashion a life where I actually live in that awareness?'” Rabbi Laura Geller, IN SWEET COMPANY: CONVERSATIONS WITH EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN ABOUT LIVING A SPIRITUAL LIFE
Welcome to the IN SWEET COMPANY blog, the next wave in the life of a beautiful book I wrote called IN SWEET COMPANY: CONVERSATIONS WITH EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN ABOUT LIVING A SPIRITUAL LIFE. The book is a collection of intimate conversations I had with 14 famous women about how their spiritual lives nourish them and serve as a steady compass for their decision-making. They are, like us, women of various ages and backgrounds with an appetite for Goodness — daughters, mothers, wives, and friends; educators, entrepreneurs, and activists; artists and healers; visionary thinkers and spiritual architects in search of the Sacred. The emotional generosity and courage they summon as they share their stories and live their lives is a demonstration of what individuals and society can learn from women committed to living with meaning, integrity, and joy. As one man told me after reading IN SWEET COMPANY, “Margaret, this is really a book for men who want to know what ‘real women’ are all about.” (insweetcompany.com/women.php)
To my great surprise, IN SWEET COMPANY has had a life of its own — almost as if “she” is the 15th woman featured in her pages. “She” has a “professional life” as a teacher and counselor. “She” is social, invited into homes and hearts around the world and shared among families. “She” is guided by core values and is trusted — a woman who has your back. “She” has a spiritual life, a profound connection to God — especially to the Divine Feminine.
When the book was released …