June 30, 2016

And I read Elaine Pagels. I had read "The Gnostic Gospels" years before and it had really impressed me. In fact, I read it when I was first feeling God. And then I read "Beyond Belief," which is a book she came out with recently, and it had a lot of references to early Christians and Gnostic Gospels, and so I read the originals. In fact, I got the whole Nag Hammadi library and through that reading, I began to realize that I am on the right path. That Christianity is my spiritual home. This is where I'm meant to be. And that I have to discover for myself what that means.

I think feminism is another way of teaching what Jesus taught, that we are all full human beings with the right to have our humanity seen and respected.

And this is very new and so you know, it's hard for me to go into it in great detail because I'm only a few years into this journey. But I am riveted, I am fascinated with religious history, with Biblical history, with the early Gospels, with Robert Graves, King Jesus, I'm just, I can't get enough. This is a very real journey for me.

Have you been able to find a spiritual community in Atlanta that you can identify with?

I want very much to do that. I would have to say that I have been for the last five years, writing my book which means that I don't leave home very much.

I started venturing out when I finished the book last fall and discovered that there's a whole community nationwide of feminist Christians. I finished the book and then I heard about this book "Faith and Feminism" by Helen LaKelly Hunt, and now I've gotten to know her and through her, discovered that there's a lot of us out there. And it's like, "O.K., this was waiting. I needed to finish [the book] and this was waiting for me." And it's very exciting.

And of course there was Anne Lamott. When I first became a Christian, I read "Traveling Mercies" and I realized, "Oh, I'm not alone, thank you." It was this book that literally came to me by accident that was my view of what it means to be a Christian. And I gave it to my children because I said, "This is what I'm talking about" because they're just sort of horrified [laughs] with my whole process.

Did that help them understand you? Did they read it?

I don't know. I think my daughter read it because she loves Anne Lamott-so I think she did-but they just, they just don't want to deal with this trip that I'm on.

Was there one "Ah ha" moment for you?

No. It's been a journey; little baby steps. And then long about 1998, it became very vibrant and vivid for me and that's when I began to pray-and prayer, it was very powerful for me.

And you hadn't ever prayed before then?

No. I had meditated and still do. And it's different.

What kinds of things do you pray about?

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Well, a lot of times it's thanks. You know, I feel uncomfortable always asking for something [laughs]. So there's a lot of things. And I have a lot to give thanks for. But when I need an answer, or I need someone to be helped, it's always the same: my hands in prayer position and my thumbs pressed against my third eye, my forehead. I find that I need to do that. And I need to be sitting or kneeling. It's like sending up. It's like my prayer and my thoughts go from my head through my fingers upward. And I'm sending this upward and as I describe within the book, I feel "hooked up."