Cover of "Common Ground" magazine for October/November 2018, featuring a colorful painting of a woman with nature-themed details, surrounded by headlines about women’s issues and cultural topics.

October / November 2018

The Women Issue

It’s official, we live in interesting times — especially for women. Anyone concerned about Roe v. Wade? I used the Supreme Court hearings as an entry point in speaking with Alice Walker, the Pulitzer Prize winner for The Color Purple, a literary lioness if ever there was one. Alice had an abortion in college and it nearly drove her to suicide. You’ll appreciate our chat and the arc of her courageous life. A national treasure.

This month I also spoke with Tae Yun Kim, who, like Alice, is 74 and grew up with parallel challenges. While Alice grew up the child of sharecroppers in rural Georgia, Tae Yun Kim grew up in rural Korea, where it was believed that to be born a girl was a curse. Her parents abandoned her during the Korean War as bombs were dropping. As an 8-year-old she wanted to become the first girl to break the 5,000-year tradition that disallowed females from practicing martial arts. She did. And then went on to become the first female Great Grandmaster. Both interviewees remind us of courage’s deep rewards.

Rebecca Traister is another badass whose 5,000-plus-word essay “You Thought Trump Voters Were Mad: American Women Are Furious — Changing Culture and Politics Forever” is a worthy and informative read — one we were simply compelled to include. Thank you.

On a more artsy note, we’re proud of two pictorials, the first being Women of Visionary Art. Thanks to David Jay Brown and Rebecca Ann Hill for their work compiling these stunning female psychedelic pioneers. Our second featurette derives from Embody: Intimate Photographic Encounters With Women, which showcases the work of Danish photographer Lone Morch, whose portraiture acts as a somatic therapy helping women overcome their own body shame.

I believe most everyone will relate to Liz Bliss Esalen’s “Too Much or Too Little? A Woman’s Call to Freedom From the Harrowing Tightrope of Others’ Judgment,” for who has not been stalled to a stop by others’ perceptions?

Danielle Dulsky’s “The Holy Wild: Heathen Priestess Circles for the Untamed Woman” reminds us of the virtues — sometimes esoteric — of sorority. Special thanks to Hallie Iglehart Austen for her essay “Heart of the Goddess: Balancing Sacred” and to Dr. Mike Dow, who reminds us of the importance of brain calm, especially when one is confronted with cancer. And who doesn’t know someone coping with that challenge?

We look forward to seeing you at the many local events coming up — Bioneers, Science and Nonduality, the SF Vegetarian Society’s 50th anniversary festival, the Sustainable Enterprise Marin Conference, not to mention Halloween, Election Day, and Thanksgiving.

Your appreciation for Common Ground is best shown by patronizing its advertisers — the best. Our next issue, December-January, is themed “Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise.” Any ideas?

In the spirit of Thanksgiving,


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