There is a tenderness to this world that is often seen as weak.
There is an inherent beauty to all things that is so often trampled upon, like the tender violet finding its way toward sunlight.
There is a necessary quality of care for human beings who are very vulnerable – the young, the old, and the ill – that is close to invisible in our cultural conversation.
There is a mysterious nature to life and death that we fear and so we, both men and women, project it onto those who embody this mystery – women.
The feminine has been normalized in a way that is not an accurate or dignified representation of the feminine nor of those human beings who embody her.
In our human conversation,
there is much judgment and labeling of what is good and valuable, and what is bad and worth little, rather than a discerning eye for the nature of things as they are.
While we might want to believe that humans aren’t capable of discerning without judging, I disagree. When we become more conscious of our direct experience, we begin to be able to put words to our experience in a way that creates a whole-encompassing narrative rather than categorizing into a hierarchy of worth and value.
Perhaps that is the key – that we find a way to help each other to become more conscious of our own direct experience. One way we can do this is to begin to put words to it.
Over the past few months, something has been noodling in my thoughts. I’ve noticed how, at least in the United States where I live, our cultural conversation has ‘normalized’ things that are not normal. I’ve watched how the cultural narrative has shifted as different people have come into power. Angry – really rageful – rhetoric is now seen by many to be a ‘normal’ way of speaking to another. Statements are made as fact, even if they are not. These statements are repeated over and over until people begin to believe they are fact. And then a new narrative is born based on lies, deceit, and ignorance.
When people in power speak and behave in a certain way, we can begin to believe it is the new ‘normal’ or that it is ‘true’. And then, suddenly, we have a new narrative about what is ‘real’.
Consider the cultural narrative about women and the feminine.
When I listen to how women are portrayed and discussed in our culture, I am not hearing or seeing my experience, which is very different. I am not hearing my narrative spoken. While my white experience is reflected, my experience of being a woman is not.
So I offer this to you…
Who will normalize the female experience if we do not as women? Who will normalize and make explicit one’s experience of the feminine aspects of life if those of us who are becoming conscious of them do not?
We have a creative opportunity at hand. We get to write our own narrative about ourselves – about women and the feminine. If we are willing to pay attention to the truth of our lives and the truth of ourselves, we can come to write a narrative of what it is to be female and what it is to embody the feminine. I am not saying we are all the same. Not at all. But, there are certain strands and threads that run through our experiences because these strands and threads run through the feminine herself.
[And by the way, I hope men do this, too. I sense the current cultural narrative of what it is to be a man is not based on many men’s experiences.]
The feminine is not only white.
The feminine is not only straight.
The feminine is not only Christian.
The feminine is not only thin.
The feminine is not only ‘beautiful’.
And, the feminine is not just female.
Who will define (and normalize) the feminine or the female experience if we do not? If we, ourselves, are not willing to be vocal about what this experience is?
Since the election,
I’ve been posting on Facebook in the early morning hours for exactly this purpose. In these hours when the night sky is black and my deepest thoughts are most lucid, I manage to find words that shed light on my personal experience as a woman without them becoming too linear and logical. In these early hours, I write from the deeper places in my body and soul, the places from which the feminine can be known, for the feminine is the internal world, she is the world of soul, she is the beautiful darkness and never-to-be-fully-known mysterious nature of life. She is much more than this, but these are ways to speak of her.
We can give voice to our experience. We can offer our narrative to each other and to the world. The feminine has been hidden and now she is becoming visible again, and one way she can is through feminine expression into the world of form.
We can write her into being and we will have a more accurate representation and narrative if all women do so.
If you were to offer a narrative of the feminine, what would you say and how would you share it? How would you give voice to your real and true experience?
We’re in this together and we need all of us, together, to normalize the feminine narrative. Isn’t that a wonderful realization?