The CRETA project: embracing a new spirituality in the light of modern matriarchal studies

The CRETA project explored and implemented matriarchal spirituality and egalitarian principles in contemporary society. It was realized in Italy's Trentino Alto Adige region and conducted by a collaborative group of participants, including researchers, and individuals interested in fostering social transformation along the insights from the modern matriarchal studies.

Authors: Andrea Fleckinger, Alessandra Piccoli, Angela Chiavassa

Exploring Ecofeminist Spirituality: The Rise of Inclusive Paradigms

The contemporary landscape of spirituality in Italy is witnessing a remarkable shift towards more inclusive and egalitarian spiritual paradigms. This transition reflects a broader movement away from patriarchal religious frameworks towards embracing ecofeminist spirituality, non-Christian religions, and matriarchal principles. At the forefront of this movement is the CRETA project, which serves as a compelling case study of this evolving phenomenon.

Reclaiming Matriarchal Spirituality: The Three Phases of CRETA

The CRETA project is grounded in the principles of matriarchal spirituality, drawing inspiration from both modern matriarchal societies and archaeological research in central Europe. Unlike traditional monotheistic religions with their hierarchical structures, matriarchal spirituality prioritizes gender equality, immanent divinity, and a cyclical worldview. Through initiatives like CRETA, communities seek to reclaim and revitalize these ancient spiritual practices to create more equitable and sustainable societies. Structured into three distinct phases—sowing, incubation, and germination—the CRETA project offers participants a transformative journey into contemporary spirituality.

Sowing Phase: Acquiring Knowledge and Planting Seeds

In the sowing phase of the CRETA project, participants engage in acquiring knowledge about egalitarian societies and matriarchal principles through conferences and seminars led by international scholars. This phase lays the groundwork for understanding core values such as gender equality, immanent divinity, and a cyclical worldview, planting the seeds for transformative spiritual exploration.

Incubation Phase: Cultivating Community and Nurturing Growth

During the incubation phase, participants delve into gender-specific discussions to explore themes such as care, rituality, and social roles. Through collaborative dialogue and shared experiences, they identify shared values and desires for community building, cultivating a sense of belonging and fostering emotional connections. This phase nurtures the growth of matriarchal principles within the community, providing a fertile ground for the development of rituals and spiritual practices.

Germination Phase: Blossoming into Spiritual Practices and Renewal

In the germination phase, participants begin implementing rituals linked to the natural cycle of the seasons, marking key moments such as solstices and equinoxes. Through ceremonies involving meditation, visualization, and communal activities, they experience a sense of renewal and connection with nature, blossoming into a deeper understanding of matriarchal spirituality. This phase represents the culmination of the CRETA project, as participants embrace rituals as pathways to personal and collective transformation.

Embracing Gender Equality and Immanent Divinity

Central to matriarchal spirituality is the principle of gender equality, which emphasizes the essential role of women in life-giving and societal balance. Immanent divinity replaces the concept of transcendence found in patriarchal religions, highlighting the interconnectedness of all beings and the sacredness of nature. Through rituals and communal practices, participants engage in gender-specific discussions to explore these themes and foster a deeper connection with matriarchal principles.

Rituals as Pathways to Transformation

Rituals serve as transformative tools for reconnecting with nature, honouring ancestral wisdom, and fostering social cohesion. By implementing rituals linked to the natural cycle of the seasons, participants experience a sense of belonging and reverence for the interconnectedness of all existence. Through ceremonies involving meditation, visualization, and communal activities, participants embark on a journey of self-discovery and collective empowerment.

Challenges and Opportunities

Despite challenges such as navigating community building within a patriarchal society, the CRETA project offers valuable insights into the construction of matriarchal spirituality through practice. Through collaborative research and ritual engagement, participants reimagine spirituality as a dynamic force for positive change, grounded in reverence for the Earth and the inherent dignity of all beings. The ongoing evolution of the CRETA project serves as an inspiration for others seeking to explore alternative spiritual paths grounded in egalitarian principles and reverence for nature.

Intrigued by the CRETA project's innovative approach to spirituality and social transformation? Dive deeper into this fascinating journey of rediscovery and renewal by exploring the full article. Uncover the profound insights, transformative rituals, and inspiring implications that emerge from this ground-breaking endeavour. Find the whole article published in Fieldwork in Religion and embark on a journey towards a more just, harmonious, and interconnected world through the lens of matriarchal spirituality and ecofeminist values.

Piccoli, A., Fleckinger, A., Chiavassa A. (2023). The CRETA project: Embracing a new religious paradigm. An Italian, feminist, participatory research study in the light of modern matriarchal studies. Fieldwork in Religion