Barbara G. Walker

In the beginning, in the time that was no time, nothing existed but the Womb. And the Womb was a limitless dark cauldron of all things in potential: a chaotic blood-soup of matter and energy, fluid as water yet mud-solid with salts of the earth; red-hot as fire yet restlessly churning and bubbling with all the winds. And the Womb was the Mother, before She took form and gave form to Existence. She was the Deep. . . .

From a biological viewpoint, patriarchal religion denied women the natural rights of every other mammalian female: the right to choose her stud, to control the circumstances of her mating, to occupy and govern her own nest, or to refuse all males when preoccupied with the important business of raising her young.

The very fears and guilts imposed by religious training are responsible for some of history’s most brutal wars, crusades, pogroms, and persecutions, including five centuries of almost unimaginable terrorism under Europe’s Inquisition and the unthinkably sadistic legal murder of nearly nine million women. History doesn’t say much very good about God.

…the history of early-medieval Arabia is nearly all legend. Like Buddha, Confucius, Jesus, and other founders of patriarchal religions, Mohammed lacks real verification. There is no reliable information about his life or teachings. Most stories about him are as apocryphal as the story that his coffin hangs forever in mid-air “between heaven and earth,” like the bodies of ancient sacred kings.