Updated: Jun 2
by Karen Tate (Author), Brad Olsen (Editor)
The ebook is available to download on most devices, and you can read it in any browser from amazon.com
The paperback book is 425 pages and 9 inches by 6 inches. It is a beautifully crafted tome with eight pages of full-color images available from amazon.com.
This fascinating travel perspective is sure to become an invaluable resource in every library and on every coffee table and bookshelf as the past is uncovered through the lens of sacred travel. Including both academic and popular religious perspectives, this comprehensive world guide will be of interest to both experts as well as the spiritual novice. Author Karen Tate deftly combines current trends, academic theories, and historical insights, some of which may surprise even the most well read or jaded traveler. This volume of sacred sites brings both lesser-known and famous locales into perspective as it explains the significance of Goddess both today and in centuries past. Whether the reader is an armchair or seasoned traveler, they will be delighted by the insights, humor, as well as the in-depth cultural and artistic experience of Sacred Places of Goddess. Never before have so many cultures, places, and spiritualities of Goddess been compiled between two covers.
Sacred Places of Goddess: 108 Destinations can be found on the book shelves of the New Library of Alexandria in Alexandria, Egypt!
"108 places that stir the soul." -- Chicago Tribune
"It's enough to amplify the spiritual wanderlust of even the most ardent sojourner."
-- Yoga Journal
"Nothing else like it between two covers!" -- Isis Ancient Cultures Society
Here's what Academy Award-winning actress Marisa Tomei said about Sacred Places of Goddess: 108 Destinations in her interview in Bare Magazine!
While discussing her pilgrimage to the Black Madonna, Marisa said... "Whenever I travel, I consult that book because she includes all these other places that are not on any kind of big travel itinerary."
Goddess is My Co-Pilot: New Guidebook Focuses on Feminine Spiritual Sites
By Lisa Richardson -- Los Angeles Times
LOS ANGELES -- Entering author Karen Tate's apartment is like discovering an intact pyramid. On the walls, in curio cabinets -- everywhere -- are Egyptian artifacts and goddesses large and small, in headdresses and gold leaf. A 6-foot statue of Sekhmet sits guard in the entry (although Tate says the lion-headed goddess on the throne is temporary, soon to be moved to her garden in the desert). As an advocate of goddess spirituality, Tate has traveled much of the world to visit places where figures from ancient mythology, such as Isis, Astarte, Artemis and Diana, were venerated. Much of her art was brought back from these trips.
Now she has written a book,"Sacred Places of Goddess: 108 Destinations," to help other seekers of the divine feminine to journey along those same paths.
Interest in the divine feminine has soared. No one keeps count of how many goddess believers there are in the United States, but an industry has arisen to accommodate them. There are goddess books and newsletters, Web sites and specialty stores. There is also a booming business in goddess travel tours.
The intense interest, Tate believes, has arisen in part because the world is out of balance. Wars,violence and a disdain for nature are the result of patriarchy suppressing more feminine spiritual values of healing, sustaining and nurturing, she says.
Goddess veneration works to restore a balance that Tate writes existed thousands of years ago.
"In the beginning, God was a woman, and from her womb she created all that is; thus she is all things and all things are her. ... That was true 30,000 years ago, and for millions it is still true today," she writes in her book. '
Seated in an armchair with one of her two cats on her lap, she adds: "If you do believe in a god that is someone who's going to give birth, isn't that going to be a female and not a male -- or at least a couple?"
Tate, who was born in New Orleans, calls herself a disconnected Catholic.
"I didn't ever feel very passionate about it; it wasn't a very warm, embracing faith -- at least not as I was brought up in it," she says. She moved to Los Angeles at 30 and on a whim took a class through the Learning Annex called "Finding the Feminine Face of God." It was a revelation. "I felt angry; I felt like I had been duped for the first three decades of my life." But even before she began studying feminine spirituality, Tate had been drawn to goddess imagery.Instead of reading Dr. Seuss books as a child, she pored over Egyptian mythology.
"I can remember as a kid sitting there in awe, looking at these ancient relics," she says.
"Sacred Places,"published by the Consortium of Collective Consciousness in San Francisco, is one in a series of travel guides focusing on spiritual journeys that the consortium puts out.
"People who frequently travel are looking for a little more in their journeys, rather than sitting around the pools sipping mai tais," said founder Brad Olsen. His market research showed that most travelers will buy 2.4 travel books per vacation: an overall travel guide and a book that focuses on art or history or some other niche.
"That means they buy their' Lonely Planet' or 'Let's Go' and then something else. That's who we're targeting," he said.
Lydia Ruyle of Goddess Tours in Denver takes travelers in groups of 10 to 40 to divine feminine sites in England, Florence, Italy, Turkey and elsewhere.
"There's a hunger in women to find different stories and ways of connecting to the spirit," she said. Ruyle has been to many of the places in Tate's book, as a guide or pilgrim.
"I think she's done a great job of describing the stories surrounding these sites, how to get there and how to approach the sites," Ruyle said. "It's a good guidebook."
"Sacred Places" starts in Europe and Asia Minor and moves through Africa to the Middle East, Asia, Oceana and the Americas.
Tate chose sites based on their historical, spiritual and cultural significance or for their physical richness.The book is a user-friendly guide that provides background information on a site's ancient or new-found importance. Some sections have ecological warnings about deterioration at some sites; these are called "Gaia alerts"after the Greek goddess personifying Earth.
Some associations are expected --Cypress with Aphrodite, the Parthenon with Athena and Isis with Egypt. Others are sites where Christianity, Judaism or Islam has long overtaken pagan worship and the divine feminine has been absorbed or supplanted by those traditions,Tate said.
Copyright © 2006 The SeattleTimes Company