8. Menopause Through the Lens of Mythology with Dr. Christine Downing
Today, I share a conversation about the soul journey of menopause with the remarkable Dr. Christine Downing. Chris is a powerhouse in the academic fields of mythology and religion, but she is also a powerhouse in life! She was a beloved professor of mine during grad school and served as the chair of my dissertation committee. Dr. Downing is 88-years-old and full of vitality, wisdom, and perspective about all phases women traverse in a lifetime.
It was a great pleasure to get to sit down with Chris last fall while she was in town to teach for the fall semester. This interview is being released now in part due to four of her books being re-released in the last few weeks and in part because the topic we explore, menopause, is at the backdrop of everything going on for me personally right now! When thinking about who I could talk with about the rite of passage of menopause, Chris was the clear choice.
I hope you enjoy listening to our conversation, recorded while sitting across from one another in her living room. I have profound respect and gratitude for Chris and you will likely hear it in our conversation. She is a teachers teacher, a storyteller, a no-nonsense straight shooter, and role model for me. I can only hope to have half the energy she has when I’m in my late 80’s.
“It’s scary to let go of who you’ve been. To feel like you didn’t choose to be where you are. But letting go is the only way to move forward. Acknowledging the next chapter is how we enter it.“- quote author
FEATURED GUEST: Christine Downing, PhD
Christine is a core faculty member in the Mythological Studies Department at Pacifica University. She has made extensive scholarly contributions to the fields of Religious Studies, Mythology, and Gender Studies. She is Professor Emeritus in Religious Studies from San Diego State University where she taught for almost twenty years. In 1974, Dr. Downing became the president of the American Academy of Religion, making her the first woman to do so. She has also taught concurrently at the San Diego campus of the California School of Professional Psychology, and at the C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich. She lectures frequently to Jungian groups both here and abroad. Christine Downing has forged a career in the academy and in the evolution of feminist thought through the unique blending of rigorous scholarly work with the personal voice of biographical writing and self reflection.
- Journey Through Menopause: A Personal Rite of Passage
- Mythopoetic Musings
- Women’s Mysteries
- The Goddess: Mythological Images of the Feminine
- Gods in Our Midst: Mythological Images of the Masculine – A Woman’s View
- Long Journey Home: Re-visioning the Myth of Demeter and Persephone for Our Time
- Myths & Mysteries of Same-Sex Love
- Psyche’s Sisters
To Connect with xxx and her work:
Visit Dr. Downing’s page at Pacifica Graduate Institute