By Barbara G. Walker
Barbara G. Walker, bestselling author of The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets and past winner of the American Humanist Association’s Humanist Heroine Award, takes a hard look at religion in her latest book: Belief & Unbelief.
Walker’s twenty-two new essays cover the spectrum, from “The Islamic Holocaust” being perpetrated against women to the dizziness of crystal-gazers in “Encountering the New Age.” Walker explains in-depth how religion has been perverted from its naturalistic roots in the celebration of the mystery of new life to a patriarchal orgy of violence.
In “Does Religion Make People Good?,” Walker responds with an emphatic “No!,” citing extensive evidence of “Bible Morality” to produce today’s Christian “God the Monster.”
Women have borne the brunt of patriarchal religion’s evils – Walker even argues cogently for “Religion As the Root of Sexism.” Yet in her conclusion, “Family and the Future,” the ever-upbeat Walker imagines a return to the original, best traditions of religion as a metaphor for the wonder of the universe.
Believing the Unbelievable, Does Religion Make People Good?, Bible Morality (King James Original), God the Monster, Before Patriarchy, The Three Ages of Woman, The Star In the East, What Is a Soul?, Cannibalism, Gnosticism: A Short History, Religion as the Root of Sexism, The Islamic Holocaust, A Learning Experience, How Did Funerals Begin?, Religion and War, Animalia, Encountering the New Age, Atlantis: The Evolution of a Myth, A Conversational Interview, Beauty, Women and War, Family and the Future
Barbara G. Walker is a researcher, lecturer, and author of twenty-four books and numerous articles on comparative religion, history, mythology, symbolism, mineral lore, the Tarot, the I Ching, a collection of original Feminist Fairy Tales, an autobiography, a novel, and her latest, Man Made God. Her Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets has been continuously in print since 1983 and was named Book of the Year by the London Times. She has received the Humanist Heroine of the Year award from the American Humanist Association, the Women Making Herstory award from New Jersey NOW, and the Olympia Brown award from the Unitarian Universalist Association. She is also listed in that prestigious publication,Who’s Who in Hell.
As an artist, she created seventy-eight original paintings for the Barbara Walker Tarot Deck, and 64 more for her I Ching of the Goddess card deck, both published with companion books. She has also worked as a professional knitwear designer, and her books on knitting patterns are American classics. She personally invented more than a thousand original pattern stitches, more than any other single person known to history, and created a new technique that she named "Mosaic Knitting."
A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, she has worked as a journalist, dance teacher, painter, designer workshop leader, and mentor of women’s spirituality groups as well as a wife and mother, and has presented many talks for Humanist, Unitarian, and Freethinker organizations.
"Barbara G. Walker...gives religion a series of knock-out punches in the twenty-two hard-hitting essays compiled in Belief and Unbelief. Walker's essays...touch on topics as relevant as whether or not people can live good, moral lives without religion (they can, and do, she affirms); the cruelty of the God of the scriptures; life on earth before patriarchy; how the history of Christianity is the story of how women have been silenced, deprived of their rights, and abused; how the church has sanctioned war; and more. Walker advocates for a world in which humanity has outgrown its need for gods and devils, and her book offers cogent arguments, comfort, and support for those who wish to have done with unproved beliefs and unjustifiable, often cruel and violence-prone faiths."
"[Walker's] latest collection of essays, Belief and Unbelief, holds little back, dismantling many of the defenses we frequently hear about religion...If we’ve gotten any better about women’s rights and minority rights, it’s despite what the Bible says, not because of it."
—Hemant Mehta, The Friendly Atheist
"SheVille announces the release of Belief and Unbelief by Barbara G. Walker from Humanist Press!"
Other Works By BARBARA G. WALKER
The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets; The Woman’s Dictionary of Symbols and Sacred Objects; The Secrets of the Tarot: Origins, History, and Symbolism; The Essential Handbook of Women’s Spirituality and Ritual; The Crone: Woman of Age, Wisdom and Power; The I Ching of the Goddess; The Book of Sacred Stones: Fact and Fallacy in the Crystal World; The Skeptical Feminist: Discovering the Virgin, Mother, and Crone; Restoring the Goddess: Equal Rites for Modern Women; Amazon: A Novel; Feminist Fairy Tales; Man Made God: A Collection of Essays