The pandemic curtailed physical travel and cut many spiritual folks off from gathering in large numbers at live events. But it was not the first time I had to find a way to connect with the Goddess from my own back yard -- literally, in our tree, the birds, and Her animals.
When I researched my first book on the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi, my son was very young and had special medical needs. He needed to be close to doctors and I could not be away from him for very long because of his special care. I also had no money, as I was in seminary school and struggling to pay the bills. So I connected with Lakshmi anyway I could: In the Hindu temple in Queens, at Indian restaurants, through museum exhibitions and the Asia Society in New York, and by talking to cab drivers and attending pujas with spiritual teachers visiting the city. I ordered books about her from India and I listened to music from Her culture. I could not go to India to find Her.
When I was writing my book A Goddess is a Girl's Best Friend, which was my first big, mainstream book contract, two terrorist planes hit the World Trade Center in New York, a couple of miles away from my apartment near the United Nations. I immediately became a volunteer chaplain for the Red Cross. I had no desire to travel the world for research, and I wanted to stay close to my son, so I connect to the 35 Divine Females in the book in a multitude of ways.
I always say: I had to do all my Goddessessing at my kitchen table ... and at my computer, in nature, and in visits to cultural and sacred places in my area where I could find Her. Museums, restaurants, cultural centers, local churches and temples, and attending events with local and visiting spiritual teachers. It was a scary time, during recovery from 911, so I added in a bunch of protective Goddesses.
I spent hours and hours at Border Bookstore, researching, reading, and buying reference books so I could absorb the History of the Goddess and her place in mythology and religion. They were scarce in those days but each one brought the Goddess alive from me. Sometimes I would just sit on the floor of the Goddess shelves and meditate. Somehow, dozens of Divine Females began to speak to me.