Customer Reviews: The Feminine Face of God: The Unfolding of the Sacred in Women
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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on November 26, 1998
Upon reading this book for the first time I found myself pleasantly surprised. First published in 1991, this book is as germaine to women's spirituality today as it was then. Instead of being a book about Christian women only, Anderson and Hopkins have included a cross section of North American women in their study. Women of many different faiths candidly discuss their personal revelations regarding their spiritual growth and their relationships with the divine.
Interspersed with the women's stories are the experiences of the two authors as they struggled to research and write this book. This sharing of the authors' experiences makes the book accessible to anyone, reminding us that we are all only human - subject to doubts and questions as easily as we are to revelations and joy. Instead of being a dry, preaching, self-help book, the combined experiences of Anderson and Hopkins and their subjects create a story full of laughter, joy, pain, sorrow and, most importantly, a sense that as women we must explore our own spiritual lives in our own ways in order to live at our fullest potential.
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on June 16, 2012
The first part of the title attracted me to this book, as well as the first few pages in which the authors explain their need to seek the feminine face of God. I particularly liked the reference to the Shekinah, and looked forward to reading more about this aspect of God. After a lifetime (75 years) of hearing and reading so much of the male perspective of God (which I accept as part of the Taoist yin/yang concept) I wanted to learn ways to think of God in my own, feminine terms. After all, do we really want to speak to a Sacred Masculine Essence about PMT and other female issues? Traditionally men have had male metaphors to empower them in their sacred work, but women have not had any feminine metaphors. An early Bishop insisted that women do not even have souls! Women need collective healing from that. Clarissa Estes gets close to the mark when she refers to La Que Sabe, 'The One Who Knows,' as representing the Sacred Feminine Essence. But will there ever be an inclusive title? I expected to read about the early representations of the Mother/Father God and how we could use that in contemporary ways, but this concept is not included.

The book concentrates on the second part of the title: The Unfolding of the Sacred in Women. It focuses largely on individual women's struggles to find their spiritual path and says very little on what they discovered about the feminine nature of God. I was disappointed because of this. However I do not think the one star review is at all fair, and certainly not how I consider a feminine voice should be expressed with regards to the sacred. Surely the feminine face of God represents compassion and mutual respect, no matter how opposite our views.

If you want to compare other women's stories with your own, the book is greatly encouraging. But if you want to change from addressing God as Father and learn how to approach Her as the Divine Mother without getting into the all-out goddess cultures, then, like me, you will be looking for a different book.
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I just finished this book last week while on vacation. It made for easy, fascinating reading due to all the personal stories. No matter where you are in your life journey, you will be able to find a story in this book that speaks to you. The authors did an excellent job of interviewing a cross-section of women at various points in their life journeys. I especially appreciated hearing from women of different faith traditions. The book challenges women to seek a new language and experience to express their spiritual longings. Too often we have settled for the male models, and frankly, they don't work very well for us! It was refreshing to be given permission to pursue the tangents I know I have felt in my own spiritual journey, but have not always given credit to their validity. This book is an excellent gift and is appropriate for women in their mid-20s on. It also should appeal to the woman who has never set foot within a "church" setting, as well as one who has. The book has excellent endnotes as well as a selected bibliography to seek out further resources.
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on April 19, 2002
The authors spent a lot of time researching and interviewing various women that are considered extremely spiritual. The result is a book of many stories of women from different backgrounds and the many paths to took to find their spirituality.
I found the book very inspiring and wanted to read it again as soon as I finished the last page. I recommend this book for every woman out there.
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on July 12, 2007
The first time I read THE FEMININE FACE OF GOD (a gift from a friend) I browsed around a bit, and saw a reference to the consequences of locking away the fearful experiences of our lives, and the idea that they will come pouring out, like the Furies from Pandora's box - dangerous not because they were freed, but because they had been locked up in the first place.

When I read that, I knew that this was a book that could help shine some light in my life. Years later, and many readings later, I still feel the same way about Anderson & Hopkins' masterpiece. It is as fresh and as timely now as it was then. And my life is richer indeed for having read it and learned from it.
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on December 28, 1997
I first read this book several years ago when I was about 25. After reading the book, I felt as though I had looked into what the future might hold: Women have a lot in common. We may have different paths and destinations, but our internal struggles are similar. It's tough being the nurturing woman (wife, mother...) while retaining a sense of self. Some women need two lives to be complete; others work very hard to evolve their life with a balance. I'm now shipping this book to several friends - two who are about to be married, one who's contemplating divorce after raising two kids, and another (my mom) who's happily married (2nd marriage) after raising two kids. I wish them all well in their continuous journey.
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on July 9, 2007
Still worth reading for anyone interested in understanding the complexities and nuances of women's spiritual journeys. A broad range of female spiritual experiences are covered that cross different ages; religious traditions (interpersed with thoughtful reports of how Christian women engage the Feminine Face of God); racial and ethnic backgrounds; marital/family status; and even region of the country (United States). This focus is on the maturing woman's journey--something to which younger women can look forward!
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on January 27, 2009
As a woman who is on her own journey into the Feminine Divine this book is a God-send. "Feminine Face", through the words, stories, and experiences of many women, informed me that I was not alone in my great discomfort with the religious practices I have been raised with. By allowing the reader to hear the voices of so many women from various lifestyles, ages, occupations, experiences, religious backgrounds and in varying stages of their journey, this book serves as a guide to the woman who is just starting on the path into her spirituality as well as the woman who is well on her way but may have hit a road block. Because it offers no clear-cut method for discovering the divine, "Feminine Face" encourages each woman to trust her own spirit and be empowered by finding her own way.

This book will continue to be a reference for me and I recommend it for anyone who wants to mature from being a "child of God" to an "adult of God".
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on April 3, 2015
I have read many books on women and spirituality over the years, and I don't know how I missed this one. Many aha and transformational moments as I read the stories and author observations. A must read, especially for women in their 50's and 60's. Affords the opportunity to reflect and move forward, feeling a resonance and validity of a collective women's experience.
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on May 12, 2007
This is a great book---very inspiring, uplifting and affirming. The authors get it right.

My only question is: where is the balance? We need feminine and masculine energies to balance us, especially since we contain both qualities. God does not only have a feminine face and the authors know this, however I would have enjoyed reading about the balance between the two. We need to bring out both in ourselves.

Nice work, authors! Now, write a book about the balance.
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