Lovers romantically creating moments for themselves to acknowledge and celebrate the magic of their love. Some are very private about this day and make it a one-on-one quiet celebration. I remember my dad who surprised my mom throughout the year with loving gestures. He used to say he wouldn’t give in to the hype and commercialism of Valentine’s Day. He said he didn’t have to be forced to show my mom and the world his affection for her. Yet, he knew he had to play along. He made sure to honor my sister and me with a box of chocolates or trinket of jewelry. It was showing us that this was a ‘guy’ responsibility or something.
Other people are very public about this holiday and they jump right into the fanfare. The entire entertainment business thrives during this holiday. It is a most popular evening for clubs and restaurants as they create the perfect ambiance using soft reds and pinks to assist in the lure of love. Their job is to keep low lighting, soft music, an abundance of chocolates and champagne on hand. This will be the night that many will get down on one knee and bare their hearts asking the question they’ve given so much thought, “Will you marry me?” If the answer is yes, then there is the promise of true and everlasting monogamous love. This is the dream that we are pointed toward as soon as we can understand life. However, it is a dream that can be psychologically dangerous for so many.
I am certainly not a humbug when it comes to romance. Romance is beautiful and from my perspective, it is also necessary to keep the fantasy of love alive. Our lives can get so mundane and the spark from our imaginations and our loving expressions are necessary to refuel our relationships. It’s nice to step out of the daily grind and jump into the make believe, grownup world of playful love. Mom used to say it was necessary to keep a healthy marriage alive. Paying bills, running the household and going to work can’t be all there is. So, I say keep the flowers and chocolates coming… I also say, it’s not just about romantic love.
Being playful in this world is so very necessary for our emotional, spiritual and physical wellbeing. Too many people are left out of this ‘love’ holiday. In fact, it causes a depression unlike any other when it’s made evident that a person is single. No lover in their lives. No monogamy with the promise of love forever after. It unfortunately brings up insecurities and a deep questioning of “What’s wrong with me?”. People begin to wonder whether they are loveable. It’s serious. As a counselor, I hear this sadness among single people often. And the hype on television and social media is making it worse. In our society, we start the brainwashing at a very young age. We must aspire to have a mate. And that mate must romantically love us with all their heart. Little girls, for sure, are spoken to about their someday wedding to Mr. wonderful. I am sure this is true for little boys as well.
Let’s take love to a whole other level. Something that includes all of us. And this level is not something new. It’s something that we are just not use to recognizing. Young, old, single or coupled, we are all extending and receiving love all the time. And we don’t just extend love to people. We love lots of things. Cars, nature, food etc., how often have you said, “I love…” and it had nothing to do with romance. Love is wholesome and healthy and necessary and abundant for all of us all the time.
I’ll continue to celebrate the ‘red’ love of hearts and flowers, chocolates and romance; and I’d also like to start a love revolution of ‘green’. Green love that reflects the heart chakra. If you’ve never heard of chakras before, they are a very deep spiritual and energetic philosophy. In these next paragraphs, I will do my best to sum up for you, the basic understanding of the chakra system while letting you know that we all have a chakra system within us.
Chakras are energy centers within each body that correlate to the different emotional/ spiritual mainstays of life. Although there are thousands of chakras within our bodies, there are seven main emotional/spiritual centers that are focused on. Those seven encompass our sense of spirituality, sense of intuition, sense of creativity, sense of love, sense of personal power, sense of individuality, sense of sensuality and our sense of personal responsibility. It is thought that a person being balanced in these seven areas of their energetic body is a well-balanced person.
These seven main chakras or energy centers, run the length of our bodies from the top of our heads to the base of spine. Those closest to our head are responsible for our spiritual emotional wellbeing. Those closest to the base of the spine are responsible for our earthly emotional wellbeing. For example, the root chakra is located at the base of the spine, closest to the earth and it correlates to our connection with the earth and matter. A healthy root chakra keeps us grounded in order to maintain life. Our crown chakra is located at the top of our head closest to the heavens and it correlates to our spiritual connection. Keeping us healthily aware that there may be more to this life than this earthly dimension we are living in. Each chakra also has its own specific color. Starting from the Crown chakra toward the base of the spine, the seven colors are Ultra Violet, Indigo Blue, Light Blue, Green, Yellow, Orange and Red.
In the center of our being is our heart chakra. It correlates to love and joy. It brings our spiritual and earthly consciousness together. The heart chakra is not just about romantic love. In fact, romantic love is just a mere part of it. It resonates with love in all paradigms on all levels: love of music, friends, art, self, animals, nature and all else we love. Take a moment and remember a time when you witnessed something that brought you pure joy. Maybe it was watching a child take their first steps. Or perhaps it was the smell of a rose that you planted from seed. Was it a special automobile that filled your heart? How about your favorite hobby? Completing the creation of a craft is something that brings many people joy. I know that my heart swells as I listen to the sound of a perfect pitched operatic voice. And my sister is overjoyed when her company fawns over her cooking. In recognizing joy, allow yourself to point to that part of your body that ‘feels’ it. For sure, many of you are pointing to your heart center. Your, ‘heart chakra’. Yes, you are alive and in love. Now that’s something to celebrate!
So, there you have it. We are Love. We are abundant beautiful love in so many areas of our lives that we need not celebrate just the romantic kind. Let’s jump into this new celebration by saying yes to Happy Red Hearts and Happy Green Hearts too! Let’s celebrate that we are amazing creatures designed to love and love big. I applaud green hearted greeting cards and dining tables set with green flowers and colorful green balloons. Let’s nibble on chocolate and reclaim the one thing that we all have in common… Love, Love LOVE!
It’s the end of a cycle. It’s the beginning of the winter season where everything seems to go dormant. It’s a time when the Earth withholds her nutritious moisture and allows the landscape to sleep. As the summer bids us goodbye, we get to see the beauty and the dryness of lifeless leaves and bare trees. Colors go from the full and flowerful colors of reds, yellows, violets and blues to the sharp colors of burnt oranges, browns and greens. No more will we see the vision of tiny buds that hold the hope of full bloom and fabulous fragrance. The landscape will look like the bright sunsets that we are used to seeing as the sun leaves the sky. It’s like a brilliant crescendo to the end of glorious symphony.
The gardens that we’ve tended since spring look for their final clean up. And as we uncover our soil we start to cover up our selves. It’s time to layer our clothing in long sleeves, long pants, light jackets, socks and shoes. All this in preparation for the change in weather to cool then cold. Life on the upside of our planet starts to go within, and so do we.
In honor of the feminine side to spirituality, we begin our hibernation. We don’t hibernate like bears by going into a deep sleep, but we do hibernate. We take our lives and bring them indoors. We begin welcoming family and friends to the dining table instead of the barbeque and pool. For many of us, it becomes a quieter time. We go within ourselves as we reflect on the warmer, more active months. Kids are back at school; outside activities are not as frequent and this gives us time to be more contemplative. Really allowing yourself to be more contemplative and reflective allows transformation. The kind of transformation that’s healthy and expansive. Just like our landscape needs its time to go underground to rejuvenate, we need our time to go within and revisit our purpose and our passions. It’s as if this part of our planet is taking a deep inhale. We need to inhale as well. Take in our memories and actions while looking to see where change may be needed or where we want to expand on who we’ve been and do more of that.
As always, I look to nature and to the Indigenous to behave consciously knowing that we are all part of a life’s cycle. If we stay in the activity of summer, we will deplete ourselves for sure. The winter of the land is as imperative as the winter of our lives. In our modern lives we live in adrenaline way too much. Our bodies and psyches cannot keep up with our constant activities and the demands we place on ourselves to do it all. We become tired, cranky, overextended and stressed out.
My wish and my prayer for you and all of us is that we remember to go within. Slow down. Enjoy the broth of good soup. Do nothing…. relax and restore. Mother Nature is giving us the perfect opportunity to take care of ourselves. You know what happens when we ignore our mothers ☺ Enjoy the beauty of the Autumn and I’ll speak to you again as the holidays approach!
Women are the creators of language. I’ve read that in my studies. It makes sense to me. They are the ones who bore the children and communication was necessary to keep the little creatures alive. 😊 And as we all know, for the most part, women are the ones wanting and giving constant conversation to everything. Communication is important in every area of our lives. Communication is necessary professionally, personally and globally. We can color with our words. We can lift a person up with our words. We can create dramas and beauty and peace with our words. As a person speaks, our minds conjure up images. These images create feelings. We create joy or sadness with our words. I’m sure there is no argument about this.
There is a communication that is a regular part of society that is not necessary. In fact, it’s more harmful than one might think. Gossip. Gossip is out right dangerous. Gossip is not just idle chatter. It goes much deeper than that. In the community that I surround myself with, we understand that each of us gives off energy. We understand that all of life is made up of this energy. Plants, animals, humans and all of matter is made of the same energy that we give off. This energy is tangible. Around each of us there is an aura. This aura is created by us and it ripples out to our surroundings. To gossip, means to create a negative energy about someone. When we speak this negative stuff, we actually put a vibration out into the world that can affect that person. All of us can ‘feel’ when we are being talked about in a negative way. Even if we do not have proof, we instinctively or energetically know that we have been the target of unwanted conversation. Images have been conjured up and the ripple of energy has expanded outward and it does harm as we ‘feel’ the consequences of such conversation.
Over the years and years of being made to feel as though what women say is unimportant, many women have learned to talk more about others than to speak on matters that are inspiring and useful. Sure, it can be blamed on the millennia of patriarchy oppression of women’s worth, but I would much rather say that it is simply time to recognize how harmful gossip is. We are easy to say that for children and teens, bullying is harmful. Yet, we fail to realize that the vibration and actualization given off by gossip is equal to if not worse than bullying. And this is not just a women issue. Men are equal in the gossip area. Peer pressure doesn’t stop after high school. It is easy for some people to just get caught up in the gossip that permeates our conversations. I’m sure no one really means any harm. My wish for you is that you don’t get caught up in conversations that don’t ‘feel’ right. Attributed to Ram Dass are words that changed my life forever. He said, “Before you speak, ask yourself. Is it necessary? Is it true? Is it kind? And, is it better than the silence?”
As a counselor and life coach, I get to witness first hand the damage that gossip can to do a person. In a summer that is so abundant with beautiful color, warm weather and ocean breezes, I choose to have my conversations about life and the inspirations that move me and others forward in a positive way. Let nature teach you how to share the good stuff and in this way, we begin to create better and more peaceful habits.
The Feminine quality of nurture is just one of the most misunderstood of all feminine qualities. The word doesn’t sound powerful. Nurture may sound insignificant to many because it’s defined as something you do for someone or something else. Our dictionaries define the word to mean, ‘care for and encourage the growth or development of someone or something’. There’s no ‘take charge’ in the definition. In our ‘out of balance’ understanding of the masculine and feminine qualities, we think that if something doesn’t sound powerful, almost fearful, then it is not important. The words passive, silent, soft and supportive seem to take a back seat to the words active, loud, hard and independent. We applaud when a person is outstanding in their achievements, yet we overlook the pensive person who gets to the finish line more slowly contemplating every move instead of rushing to the end line. I recently learned of the possible harm we are doing to children that are introverted. We tell them to get involved with others. Be a good team player. Speak up! We don’t realize that introverts are usually very smart and contribute so much to our society by their contemplative ways. Many times, they are the ones in creative mode while others are acting out. We make them wrong for their passive quiet personalities. We make them wrong for enjoying their time alone instead of being part of the crowd.
I believe these misconceptions are some of the issues at the root of our imbalance between the masculine and feminine. For so long we have been suppressing qualities in our children that seem soft, emotional, passive and inwardly creative. We don’t want children to cry when they are disturbed. We want them to bypass the feelings and go straight for the solution. We certainly don’t want to show our emotions at work. It’s is considered inappropriate behavior. We are literally taught what is acceptable and what isn’t. We learn to hide, suppress and camouflage our feelings to an unhealthy extent and then we wonder why our youth is insensitive to the feelings of others.
I know many of you agree with me on this. Innately we all want to be nurtured; we all want to express our feelings. Our feminine passive, nurturing, feeling qualities are as necessary as our masculine, assertive, independent, focused qualities. All in balance. All needing to be managed, but not discarded. Knowing this and allowing it to become our reality however, are two different things. I have clients tell me all the time they won’t cry in public. They keep the illusion going that no one cares and that they wouldn’t dare make anyone feel uncomfortable. They even acknowledge that they know it can physically and mentally hurt them to suppress their feminine side. Yet, they do it anyway. How many times have you heard someone say, I almost cried, but I held it together.
So, how do we fix this problem and come back into balance? Summertime is a perfect time to begin feeling again. Nurturing the landscape will help to bring out your loving side. Playing outdoors with your pets or children helps those emotions to show up again. Laughter is so expressive and healing. Find a movie that will bring tears to your eyes and open your heart. Don’t watch it alone, let the tears flow!
Being human is such a complex and fabulous existence. In Indigenous cultures, feelings, nurturing, passivity and all the sides of being human are honored. In this way we become whole and healthy and balanced. Learn from our ancestors. There is so much we can gain by just being our true selves.
Featured in Great South Bay Magazine
Many including myself, see that the Feminine is Rising. It can sound like the beginning of a Women vs. Men war. It can sound like a kind of take over by the female of the species. It can sound threatening in many ways because of how we’ve been conditioned. We’ve been conditioned that men and women are against each other. We’ve been conditioned to think that femininity solely belongs to women and masculinity solely belongs to men. We’ve been conditioned to think that everything feminine has to do with a soft, passive and of weak nature. We’ve been conditioned that everything masculine has to do with sharp edges, narrow thinking and aggressive behavior. This kind of thinking brings us to odds with each other and within ourselves.
It is time for us to look at femininity and masculinity differently so that we can better understand the changes that are occurring all over our planet. As I’ve said in a previous article, we, both genders, contain masculine and feminine attributes. Yes, for the most part women are the nurturers and men are the protectors and all that… however, a person in balance is a person, male or female, that can freely bring out all sides of their personality.
Assertion, confidence and strength in character are among our many masculine traits. Compassion, intuition and emotion are among our many feminine traits. Can you imagine the individual who expresses confidence and strength in the midst of their tears? Or using compassion and intuition, a judge that is able to assert justice for all?
Crying is not a sign of weakness. It is a necessary emotion that allows us to express and release our tight or sad or angry energy. Anger is healthy when it is balanced with conscious action.
Consider that, ‘The Feminine Rising’, is bringing about a balance in human nature. For too long, we have been living and understanding life through what many call ‘the Patriarchy’. It is living within the masculine energy as if that were the better, smarter way of being. We’ve been living in the idea of bigger and better regardless of the consequences of our actions. The Matriarchy voice is rising. She is the voice that takes a stand for our planet. She is the voice that says rather than bigger and better, how bout enough for all and harm to none.
My boyfriend and I watched a television show this weekend that highlighted an interview of a young man (perhaps in his 30’s) who created a thriving business by making people comfortable at work. Flexible hours. Open kitchens. Colorful desk areas and lounges. He is one of a growing trend in business professionals. This is business with a compassion for human needs instead of just the ‘bottom line’. How very different is that from the old fashioned colorless cubical and strict environment. Business is booming and the staff is healthy and happy. This is business incorporating both masculine and feminine considerations.
Many millennial households have fathers and mothers taking on the care of their children and house hold duties as well as both partners keeping their careers. This is a balance in partnership. Fathers are as necessary for parenting as mothers. Mothers providing for their families allows them to come to their full potential. Fathers taking a bigger role in the daily activity of their kids allows them to mature their nurturing expression and connection to family.
The feminine rising in our governments means more care for the earth and her inhabitants. It means less greed and more cooperative decision making.
Yes, the feminine is rising. My wish for you is to let go of the old paradigms and allow a more balanced approach to life. I conclude my articles asking you to learn from the ancients. The ancients knew we all had purpose. They knew that each of us being in balance brings out the best in us as individuals, tribes and communities. It is balance that will bring us into harmony with ourselves and others. We’ve gotten so far from balance and it is obvious to me that balance is on its way back. Embrace it! Go for it! We just might see Utopia in our lifetime.
As this season changes and the climates and atmospheres around the world are in chaos and flux, I am intimately reminded of just how connected we all are to the nature that surrounds us. I say intimately because I, like many of you, have an emotional and physical reaction to what is going on in the atmosphere. We’ve had two tremendous storms hit our continent. Before they hit, while they were still churning and building their vortex of power, my clients were calling in with different concerns. “Rev. Laura, I am feeling extremely tired.” “I feel so edgy, like I’m ready to snap at anyone for anything.” “I feel weepy and I find I am crying a lot for no apparent reason.” None of this surprised me. In fact, I expected it.
Once again and I’m speaking generally, most of us, womyn and men, are attached or at least affected by the atmosphere. For some, it is common knowledge. We say, I know when a storm is coming or when it is going to rain because my joints become tender. How many times have you heard someone say they want to move out west cause it ‘feels’ better. We also acknowledge that our emotions are governed by the phases of the moon. Lots of us are a bit ‘off’ when the moon is full. She regulates all the water on our planet, including the fluid in our bodies. When the water in our body’s rise, our organs shift and it throws us off. This is acceptable and understandable. Emergency rooms are busier when it’s a full moon. The word Lunatic correlates with the full moon and our reactions to it. This is not a surprise to anyone.
Knowing all this, we shouldn’t be so surprised that we are affected by storms, and sunny days as well. It’s not really said out loud. In fact, when it is said, many people ignore it as if it is yet another new age/old myth. Some of us are aware that we are affected by the movement and alignment of the planets and stars. We secretly look at our horoscopes with earnest while pretending that it is just play. Yet, it is true that we are affected and connected. All of us are connected to all of nature, the earth and the heavens.
Although it is rarely put into words, as soon as young womyn start their physical cycle, they begin an inner knowing of their connectedness. It’s unfortunate that we are not taught to regard our mood swings and sensitivities as normal. I am not speaking of extreme personality disorders that are diagnosed as chemical imbalances. I am speaking of the general moods, emotional ebbs and flows of our psyche that happen on a regular basis. No need for drugs. No need for diagnosis. No need to wonder, “What’s wrong with me!”. All we have to do is become aware. We get pulled and tugged by the atmosphere just as the trees and waters, insects and animals do.
One of the differences between us and the four legged and winged ones, is that they prepare for it. Many of our pets become docile when the weather is gloomy. Dogs for sure tend to fear the sound of thunder. Thunder is dangerous. They know it. Spiders build webs when the winds are coming. They know food will get blown into those webs. Birds disappear when the winds and rain come. They stop chirping well before the first drops show up.
When we are ignorant of the ‘mood’ shifts that happen during inclement weather, we react with fear or aggression. People may be snappy and we snap back and criticize instead of pausing for a moment and realizing that perhaps there is more going on than meets the eye. When we are a bit ‘off’, things may seem exaggerated. Traffic may seem more horrendous than usual. Road rage, could easily be on the rise. The cashier may not greet us with a smile and on this occasion we take it personally and that can ripple over to the next person we come in contact with. We don’t like the way things are running at home and our spouse better watch out because we react instead of pausing to open to the fact that we may not really be fully in control. We actually may not ‘lord’ over nature. She in fact, may be lording over us.
When we take the time to read, learn and explore the ancient civilizations and the Indigenous cultures, we start to take back our own wisdom and knowledge. Human beings are part of nature. The more we are aware of who we are and the role we play in this vast universe, the more we can learn how to be. I mention these small individual reactions to what may be triggered by the nature that surrounds us. There are much larger consequences to our moods as well. Remember, life is the same on every level large and small. Wars start with just one person. One argument. One set of circumstances.
Try being patient with yourself and others. Perhaps you may want to hold off on making any huge choices when the atmosphere is electric. Perhaps you may want to hold back on reacting to anything and in place of reacting, take a breath. Observe what’s going on around you. Don’t be the tree that doesn’t know how to bend and instead breaks. Or the roof that allows itself to be blown off. Breathe… pause… take it easy. Respect that you are not isolated. Know that you are part of It All.
At the Vancouver Peace Summit, the Dalai Lama said something that ricocheted around the globe. He said that he is a feminist. And he opined that Western women will save the world. How will we do that, you might ask. We will do it by knowing ourselves and acting from the truer knowledge of who we are as feminine creatures on this planet.
There are many inspirational quotes about knowing thyself. From Socrates to the Apostle John to Ann Landers and Debbie Ford, all urge us to know our true self so that we can master our lives. To really know ones’ self, it helps to know our physical origins as well as our emotion and spiritual origins. Our foundations are what we stand on. And many women and men are not aware of the main stages of a women’s life. When we realize the true and innate capabilities of women, we will see how they can balance and shape our lives and the entire planet in a healthier way. This is NOT a competitive statement between women and men. It is an urgent statement saying it is time to realize women for all they are in our personal, professional and global lives. In general, we hold women back from being all they are naturally capable of being.
In ancient, indigenous and tribal times, knowing, respecting and allowing women’s abilities and cycles to flourish, life was more manageable, peaceful and productive. To our modern-day minds, this may sound archaic or even absurd. However, I urge us all to look at what may be truth. The following is a brief description of the three main stages of the Feminine. Look and allow yourself to hear from a space that knows we need change on our planet.
A women’s first stage is as Maidens. We are born with never ending imagination and blossoming energy. Chronologically, a Maiden is the time from birth till adolescence. Maidens are little girls! They have imaginary friends, questions about everything and their minds are open to fantasy as reality. In our society we are taught that as we grow up, we should put away our fantasies and childlike ideals. What a shame this is. Now, fast forward to our 21st century and we are studying the ‘Law of Attraction’ in hopes of re-learning how to use our imaginations to create our reality. We were never intended to lose who we were as maidens. Maidenhood forms the foundation by which we learn how to manifest life. All our life stages are meant to reside and live on within us. In life’s plan, a child is as important as an adult and an adult is as important as an elder.
As we reach adolescence, we begin the process of moving into our Mother stage. Mother takes on many meanings NOT just the miraculous job of birthing and raising a child. Consider that women are capable of birthing and raising life on an intellectual, social, professional and personal level. They embody all of life. The duration of this stage may be the longest most powerful period of our lives. Physically, our bodies start to mature. Unfortunately, someone says, “It’s time to put your toys aside” and there is often a grieving that goes on internally that is never recognized. We find ourselves in therapy years later trying to heal the child within. It’s complicated yet for generations we’ve been silent about this pivotal part of being a woman. It’s like we ignore EVERYTHING?! No wonder women lose their identity. In the United States and in a heterosexual marriage, a woman gives up her last name to her spouse. First, we lose our identity in adolescence and then we secure that loss in discarding our name. It’s subliminal, yet powerful. It may make it easier for paperwork, but it wreaks havoc on our self- knowing and self worth.
When a young womyn starts her bleeding cycle, she is innately forced, not by humanity, but rather by nature, to become responsible. There is no getting away from it. Each of us becomes responsible for, at the very least, the calendar. We make sure to plan our lives around our cycle. Our weddings, vacations, parties and even a day at the beach is all wrapped up in knowing our cycle. Our bodies, minds and spirits are constantly in flux. Responsibility and management are designed into our physiology. Consider these innate attributes in business or in global affairs.
As I’ve said before, entire tribes and communities created their calendars to follow the cycles of the moon and the cycle of the women’s bodies. The Sun calendar that we follow today is a disconnect from our natural rhythms.
In the Mother stage of life, the feminine creature is also designed to multi-task. Allow yourselves to imagine back to pre-historic years, think of our ancient ancestors. We gave birth and instinctively took care of the little creatures. If we ignored them, they would surely die. Our brains were developed to think for two or more. It wasn’t a choice. It was necessary for life to continue.
One of the differences between the female and male brain is the use of the white and gray matter that the brain is made up of. The female brain uses more of the ‘white’ matter. It is this white matter that allows us to be more intuitive to our surroundings. (While this is scientific fact, I do not like to totally generalize. There are many men that are sensitive to their surroundings and of course, there are women who are insensitive to others. It’s just not as common). This white matter is what allows us to be more verbally expressive.
Another quality of our Mother years is the fullness and power of our energy and vibration. Whether we choose to have children or not, we go into a state of self-sacrifice and nurture for the sake of keeping something alive. That something will birth and nurture our careers, our lovers, our hobbies, our homes and our communities.
When we are ignorant of the dynamics of the mother stage of life, we can misinterpret our desire to self-sacrifice and nurture and unfortunately, we may tend to think it is our only way of being. We easily get caught up in the idea that women were meant to think of themselves last or second to the thing or person that we are nurturing. This is a distorted understanding of what it is to be a woman. Knowing our truer HerStory can assist us in evolving into a new more accurate paradigm and a healthier version of womanhood.
The Mother years are powerfully filled with vital life energy. Women in their mother stage collaborating on any project, personal, professional or communal, flow through the tasks at hand and reach their goals with ease. Women as activists, inventors, teachers, politicians and all other careers are most energetically powerful during their mother years. As women, we are learning to honor women in all the roles that we play. The more we do this; the more we teach others to honor women, the more this planet will reflect harmony and balance.
It is also evident to me that women isolate and overwork themselves with little to no emotional and physical reward. They push and push and push to do more and more and more on their own. The old commercial, ‘I can run our home, bring home the bacon and never let you forget you’re a man’ is fun and true and it is killing us! We were not meant to do it alone. Women are designed to group. Those coffee cloches are not just playtime. There is an exchange of powerful feminine energy and oxytocin and knowledge that allows us to grow each other naturally. When we come together in our efforts, each walk away fuller, happier and rejuvenated to bring forth more healthy energy for all.
Chronologically, we begin our Crone years when our bleeding stops. Just like the other two stages of our Feminine life, it doesn’t happen overnight. There are emotional changes, physical changes and spiritual changes that gradually move us from self-sacrifice and constant nurture to a more self-concerned way of being. In this society, it is unfortunate that we can go through an enormous feeling of guilt as we innately don’t want to take care of everyone or everything anymore. It is confusing when we don’t realize that we are simply complete with that stage. We don’t go back to maidenhood and a feeling of care free; however, we notice that innately we want offspring and spouses to take care of themselves while we tend to ourselves more.
Cronehood is a time of personal freedom and reflection. It’s a time to look over our lives and our lessons and embrace all we’ve learned. A wise Crone is someone to look to for her well-earned wisdom. She no longer has anything to prove. It’s her time to give back. This is a perfect position for political and familial guidance and not a nursing home!
An article can only accomplish tapping the surface of any subject. I encourage you to read, explore and discover different knowledge that can help change the paradigm we live in. My suggestion for your further reading is ‘Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D. author of The Urgent message from Mother. Gather the Women, Save the World.
Look again. Take a good look at the clipart.
I know exactly where my eyes darted and held a pause. Where did your eyes dart and hold a pause? I know exactly what ran through my mind.
What ran through your mind before your started reading this article? If you don’t know what your immediate thoughts were, look again. Let it land and then, lets discuss this.
Yesterday I experienced yet another growth or expansion within my studies of HerStory. I am an Interfaith Minister and founder of New Light Sanctuary, LLC. Under that umbrella, I teach and ordain other people who feel they have a calling to ‘serve’. My classes are experiential as well as lectural. In service, I feel it is necessary to understand people as well as religions and theologies. Yesterday we had a panel of women in conversation. Our panel consisted of all types of women. Puerto Rican, European, Italian, Muslim, African and Hindi. We had older and younger women. These women were from varied educational and economical backgrounds. The conversation was enlightening. We spoke of the role that appearance plays in our lives.
I was sadly surprised to hear that, across the board, in this year 2017, appearance still is the first and the most outstanding instrument by which we measure the quality of our lives. It is still the first thing that defines us. Well, not all of us, but for sure, most of us. The women spoke honestly about how they judge another and feel judged by how they dress, what vehicle they drive, and the zip code that they live in. They said they didn’t want to ‘judge’ another that way, but that in this world, it is the reality that how you look determines how you are received. I could argue that this is just an opinion and then, there are the facts. In America, regardless of position or intelligence, we slaughter our female leaders with gossip about their looks. On our panel, we agreed that when we see Muslim women dressed in hijab, it is hard for us to see past their garb. We spoke of our youth and how disappointed we are that little girls are growing up too sexy and too fast. The elders said we have no sense of modesty. I hadn’t heard that word in a very long time.
It occurs to me that there are two extremes in our global culture. Both exploit women’s bodies. Both have lead us to believe that how our bodies look is more important than who are. Both have fooled us into believing that our looks are what speak first instead of our character. One tradition uses the exaggerated and distorted version of our curves and skin and hair to create profit. The other hides our curves and skin and hair to honor the interpretation of a religion. Whichever we may have bought into, we are allowing ourselves to be emotionally, physically and spiritually fooled. We are NOT our bodies. Sure we are in these fabulous skins and lets enjoy them! but, don’t be fooled into believing you are what the eye sees.
I know you have heard before that we are magnificent creatures regardless of how we look. We are creative, intelligent, strong, innovative, nurturing and have a plethora of attributes that serve our communities both small and large. You know that dressing up or down, modestly or provocatively should be our choice determined by us rather than law, either implied or enforced. And yes, I recognize the reality of this deep seeded notion that our appearance means so much. I also know that it hasn’t always been that way. It doesn’t have to be that way.
Once again, we can learn from our indigenous ancestors. And in many cases, we can also learn from modern indigenous like the Native American, Mayan, Aztec and Amazonian tribes. In tribal life, a person earns their status in the community by what they bring to the table instead of how they look. They earn the costumes they wear. In tribal life, the body is sacred or at the very least not used for exploitation. Within the indigenous we learn that we can come forward as a fully expressed Human Being and not be judged by what we look like.
Yes, I know we are judged first by how we look. I get that it is a hard to go against the tide. The peer pressure to look good is tremendous in our culture. So tremendous that we alter our bodies with plastics and toxins till we ‘like’ what we see. It takes a great deal of courage to dress modestly to avoid letting our bodies be a ‘distraction’. I also know that it is time for us to brake the silent code that says we must look a particular way. I assert that we all try using discernment before we step outside. Your body matters and you know people are looking. Choose form fitting or flowing before you leave for work. Sure, we dress to impress. Consider what impression you are wanting to make. Do you have the courage to dress modestly when you are wanting to be ‘heard’ instead of chosen because you ‘look good’?
I find the study of our human psyche profoundly fascinating. Knowing ourselves helps us to stand strong in creating our future. The women in our past were honored for ALL they were. We can learn from them. I look forward to sharing more stories with you and I welcome your comments and interpretations. It’s when we share our thoughts that we grow in wisdom.
Thank you for your responses to last month’s HerStory article. I like that we are in this conversation together. In that article, I encouraged you to open your mind and consider that we have a ‘herstory’ as well as a ‘history’. Your feedback confirmed what I was saying. Life is cyclical. Each time thoughts come back around, we receive them differently. It was only 20 years ago that my article would have brought on a barrage of negative responses. When I first started sharing the possibility that perhaps women and men are NOT equal, I was met with comments like, “You’re holding us back”, “You should be ashamed of yourself” and “We’re not only equal, we’re better than men!” OMGoodness! The anger was intense. Feminism had its fist ready to fight for the right to be equal. I got it and I respected it. In fact, it was necessary to ‘fight for our rights’. Yet, it’s a new day and it’s time to revisit some old ideas and see where we stand now.
The anger was fierce back then. Perhaps it was the lessons we were taught about the female gender that were completely distorted and that is what made us so mad! We couldn’t get passed the fact that men and women were not treated equally in the most important areas of our civilized lives. The key words here are ‘treated equally’. It means not getting equal pay for the same job done; not being allowed to vote; using a male body as the general model for medical research, etc. and so on. You already know many of the inequalities in how women and men are treated differently.
Understandably, we were blinded and infuriated by being treated as some lesser class of people. There was a bizarre notion that women, were weaker, less intelligent creatures. So, of course we had to band together and yell loudly. We had to burn bras and throw away our virginity and basically, we had to brake all the rules to make our point. And we did make our points. We still have a way to go, yet, all those years ago, we certainly broke the mold that held us inside a tiny square box. I have no regrets.
On the other hand, I can understand how it would seem as though we as women, were lesser in the grand scheme of things. In our limited and outdated knowledge of ourselves, we thought having intuition and insights was silly instead of necessary. We thought nurture was more for cuddling up on the couch as opposed to bringing an idea to fruition. We thought making relationships while achieving our goals was too emotional and possibly messy. We didn’t understand that our feminine way of collaboration instead of competition was not only healthier for the workplace and the community, it also brings forth more valuable ideas and in the long run a more efficient service or product. We believed that we couldn’t manage a career and raise children. We thought that Mothers were more important than Fathers in raising our children. Much has changed.
We blamed our distorted lesser value on the physical and emotional makeup of the female. Instead of just realizing men and womyn are obviously different. The Feminine creature has an obvious cycle that her mind, body and spirit go through approximately every 28 days. In the modern world, that cycle doesn’t fit into the corporate structure. That corporate structure being defined as uninterrupted 9-5 and 7 days a week.
There was a time when we fought to be in that structure. To be in that structure we had to suffer the consequences of ignoring our feminine selves. We had to behave and believe more like men. Both genders miss out and suffer the consequences of this behavior. Rather than creating a structure that honored our cycles, we have tried to mask the un-maskable. In trying to achieve this, we end up somewhere in our 30-60’s at the psychotherapist’s office, saying, “I’ve lost myself”. When women live within their natural structure, they soar in every aspect of their lives and the entire community of men and women and children benefit.
We collaborate rather than compete.
Through researching our herstory, we find that instead of the 7 day week structure that has been ingrained in our lives, there is a natural structure that is already in place. The cycle women’s bodies, minds and spirits go through, is actually brilliant for creating a structure that is sound and solid on all levels professionally, personally and globally. Healthy and harmonious civilizations of yester year show us that, like our modern societies, original societies based and structured their daily activities according to their calendars. The difference is that their calendars were based on our moon instead of our sun. This allowed for the same approximate 365 days. ( I say approximate because a year is actually between 365.24 and 365.26 days) However, instead of 12 months and having 31, 30, 28 and sometimes 29 days, we were consistent with life cycles every 28 days and that meant 13 moons. Instead of corporate structure, there was a natural life structure and humanity went with that flow instead of trying to change nature itself. The feminine was in alignment with that flow. Her intuitions and insights were also in alignment with that flow. Men and women honored and sought after her advice regularly at certain times of the cycle when her intuitions and insights were more pronounced. We knew then that our E.Q. (emotional quotient) was as just as important as our I.Q. (intellectual quotient). In following natures structure, we are more productive with ease instead of discipline. We have more energy to devote to our tasks when we adhere to the cycles of life. Men and women were equally respected for what each brought to the community.
As I said in my last article, I find the study of our human existence profoundly fascinating. Knowing our past helps us stand stronger in creating our future. I look forward to sharing these ancient stories with you and I welcome your comments and interpretations. It’s when we share our thoughts that we grow in wisdom.