Burdened by this awkward title is an elegant and stimulating essay. Ochs uses the fact that we have usually thought of God as he or she to examine the way we perceive the ultimate questions of right and wrong, of meaning and consolation, and the nature of our world. Her raw material is Hebrew religion and Greek mystery cult, and her tools the anthropologists, the Jungians, the historians of the religion, and so on. Ochs--head of the philosophy department at Simmons--is a good explainer, and leaves the reader wanting to explore her reading list. Old Testament-derived Western religion is labeled patriarchal, looking to an artist creator rather than to a nurturing mother, to the nomad breaking away from the established order rather than to tilling the soil and to the walled city's rounded shelter. Obviously there is much to question here, and what the author says of her personal conclusions is true of the whole book--""not to be considered a thorough, well developed philosophical system, but a schematized, tentative pointing out."" But overall this is one of those nice books which evokes the glow of recognition as it blocks out a new, if modest area of understanding.