Part 1: I Freaking Love Music Videos
I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned it here before, but I adore music videos. The way different artists approach visual representations of their music is fascinating and beautiful. I appreciate art much more when it is visual and engaging, and music videos do an incredible job of engaging the brain. My sister and I started out in middle school watching Taylor Swift music videos on our parents’ desktop — “Love Story” was one of our favorites — and my love affair with them continued from there. I forget about them for long stretches of time, but whenever I see an amazing new one, I inevitably end up in the YouTube hole of music videos for at least an hour.
Ariana Grande just released the video for her new single, “God is a Woman,” and it. Is. Gorgeous. Not only is it aesthetically magnificent, it’s full of classic art references and feminism. What’s not to love?? If you haven’t seen it or heard the song, do yourself a favor and click play below. You’re welcome.
Part 2: The Concept of a Feminine God
When I was in my Ariana Grande YouTube hole the other day, I watched a video called Elders React to God is a Woman. This channel is exactly what it sounds like — they film elders/kids/teens watching something and then get their reactions and reviews. It’s often very funny, and this one had its humorous moments. But one of the elder’s reviews was that while the video itself is beautiful, he didn’t like the song because the concept of a woman God went against his beliefs.
This debate has always kind of intrigued me. When the novel The Shack was published, I remember groups of Christians shunning it because it portrayed God as a black woman (among other things). That was the first time I had considered that God might be something other than the traditional Father, but I didn’t really think about it much until a few years later.
My thoughts on this now aren’t really hard and fast, and honestly the gender of God is a debate I don’t think matters much in the grand scheme of things. But I’ll lay my thoughts out anyway. First, I don’t think God has a gender. From what I understand of Christianity, God is different from man, and he doesn’t need a gender because he’s not human. We refer to him by male pronouns because 1) our finite minds need something to define him by, and 2) dominant Christian cultures have traditionally viewed males as leader figures rather than women.
However, I actually like the idea of a woman God. If you believe that he (she?) created humans in his image, it makes sense that he would contain both masculine and feminine characteristics. (Or you could argue that there are no “masculine” or “feminine” characteristics; we’ve just twisted human characteristics into arbitrary categories, but that’s a discussion for another day.) Either way, a woman or feminine God makes just as much sense to me as a male God.
Do you have a favorite music video? Do you have thoughts on the concept of a woman God? Do you wanna tell me how weird it was to combine these two topics?
“Awww, break that glass ceiling!” Thanks for sharing. I probably would not have seen either of those videos.
Glad I could point you to them!
I loved reading this post. I write some articles with religious themes, and I read and comment on several Christian blogs. I always use the pronoun “Him”, but it does make me somewhat uncomfortable. I like to think of a God who has feminine characteristics too. It makes Her more relatable for me!
So glad you enjoyed! I browsed your blog as well and like what I’m finding!
For God, you could use the non-binary pronoun ‘they’. With that said, I’ll now rant about how hard it is to use that pronoun. I work for a feminist organization and one of our employees identifies non-binary. There is a constant dance with all of us correcting each other when we call them “her” and then go on to make the same mistake ourselves a minute later. There needs to be a better pronoun, or *everyone* should be a they. I believe we’re all a little bit non-binary anyway.
You could. I’ve seen some people refuse to use a pronoun for God at all and just use God every single time. That gets clunky, but I guess it works. As for people, I’ve heard of some people using ze and zir but that seems like it would be just as hard to remember as they.