Whispers at the water cooler of life.
I hear women gathering and grounding, stepping into the Goddess Flow. Some rumble that that men are not required.
A fire of womanly wiles and wills is burning. Polarizing events involving females are showing up daily. Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo, bans telecommuting. Sheryl Sandberg releases her book telling women to “Lean in”, and CNN reports on the adverse effects the Steubenville Rape case sentence will have on the perpetrators, while ignoring the victim.
Random acts of suppression and freedom? I doubt it. There is a connection between everyone of these “coincidences”. Women did once rule the world, lightly and well, and they were vanquished. Beaten, raped, tortured and silenced. What happens to a world of powerful beings left to scrap in the mud for tattered glory in the spoils of war? Beatings behind closed doors and sometimes in the marketplace.
Women have been trained for 5,000 plus years to be the good little woman. Silent, acquiescent, fearful. Jostling for position. To be the possession of the highest man. The General’s wife, not the slave. This war has conditioned all of us, since our hunter gatherer days and made us all perpetrators to keep the peace. No one is blameless. We have kept our daughters in line, getting them fixated on their appearance. Pretty disposable biddable things. Granting men permission to be rulers by force, and creating a brutal manipulative system of control.
Even now women who dare to break the unspoken rules by speaking too loud or showing too much skin is ostracized. Statistics prove that in the work place when a woman dresses ‘inappropriately’ she is shunned, punished more by her own sex than by the men. Phrases are bandied about like “she was asking for it” while turning a blind eye to a man’s misbehavior. The CNN coverage of Steubenville is a perfect example of this. Ignoring the humiliation and violent anger of rape. The bestial beating down of a young girl by the establishment.
The violent act of putting a woman in her place. Of putting all women in their place.
A pattern we have lived with and have abided by, for centuries. Poppy Harlow’s and Candy Crowley CNN report remind us that shame and blame is what has kept us "safe". Women in the dark, guards for their jailers. There is a scientific term for this.
The Stockholm Syndrome. What is called the capture-bonding response in evolutionary psychology. Talked about in terms of obvious violent scenarios, but I believe that our society is still acting out these “safety” behaviors that were set up thousands of years ago. Women were controlled by violence, shame and fear of death or being captured by another tribe. Survival is still our strongest life force. Men kept the peace and provided food and safety. Hunter gatherers we are still.
Silence is no longer needed. Shame no longer required. Yet women have been walking behind the men for so long we still stand in their shadow and fear to be seen by habit.
So while new women leaders uncover our fighting strength, spiritual roots and salve for wounds, others have different role to play. Meyer is here to remind us what happens when a woman gets to the top in a man’s world, and fights to show up as more of a man.
We need role players to recall of what happens when we forget “the lessons” we have learned so well.
Emulation will not save us. Proving we can be tougher than a man will not change the rules.
But the anger these actions provoke will. We need anger to shift, to take action. That is the supreme role of anger. To create movement, to shift us from complacency, from turning a blind eye to taking a stand. Leaning in, stirring opinion and need from our own hearts, fired up by the old regime controlling us like nothing has changed, is the first step to changing the rules.
Men and women are both needed in the new world. Neither sex is blameless. We all played our roles very well. Now it is time to pay attention as we shift into our new roles. Neither sex vanquished or made the victim, no superior sex but equivalents. Equality in our difference. The truth is we have all been trapped in repeating mistakes, repelling truth and set on getting even. If we want to right the might between the sexes we must take responsibility for ourselves, and teach our children how to do the same. Looking outwards for answers, for approval or for liberation will not free us. Taking a stand, speaking out and following our own truth will.
Are you ready to be a leader of your own light, not someone else’s darkness?
If you are intrigued and want to move towards equivalency here are some tips:
Pay attention when slipping into old “hunter gather” mentality.
Avoid assumptions about why people behave or react. That is not your business.
What matters is getting familiar with and expressing your opinion, not a regurgitation of societal “rules”
Practice speaking up. If it comes out wrong don’t beat yourself up just keep practicing.
Send love instead of judgement to that woman in too tight clothing, she too has been a victim of rules.
Stop people pleasing in its tracks. Playing nice is an insidious habit that ruins any chance of equivalency for women.
Don’t let people get away with those snide remarks. Speak up but don’t punish or belittle them for having a difference of opinion, just let them know your opinion is different and valuable.
When horrible things happen look at the situation as an opportunity to take action that will spread what you believe in. Bullies get angry and beat someone up or blame them. Sheroes take small deliberate action to bring lasting change.
Recalling ancient wisdom, equalizing the sexual landscape and breaking victim and victor mindset requires a conscious effort of continued small steps, and much forgiveness.
Choose how you show up, ask for what you want, engage with respect and determination.