الدين والروحانية: Politics, Spirituality, and the Feminine

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Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Politics, Spirituality, and the Feminine

Since our subject is Politics, Spirituality, and the Feminine, I will start with politics. I was born in Vienna, but my parents and I had to flee from the Nazis. We were fortunate to get to Cuba on one of the last ships of Jewish refugees permitted to land there. I was seven at the time, and growing up in Havana I became conscious of politics. Not only of the European politics that had almost killed me, but of Cuban politics. Because, at that time in Cuba, politics were very violent. Different student factions gunned each other down on the streets, and people were killed by the government. That convinced me that violence is not the way to achieve social justice.

In those early years of my life, I also began to develop my own view of spirituality. Every night I prayed to God for our relatives left behind in Europe. After World War II ended, I saw the newsreels of the Nazi concentration camps, and found out that most of those left behind—my grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins—had been brutally killed. That was when God died for me. But there was always in my life spirituality in the sense of putting love into action. So spirituality for me is not so much otherworldly, but about what we do right here on Earth.

This takes me to the feminine, because the love and caring that for me lies at the core of real spirituality has stereotypically been thought of as “soft” or “feminine." So it's been given a great deal of lip service, but—along with women and "effeminate” men—barred from social governance.

John Renesch
John Renesch
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Continuing the Dialogue

Riane, thanks for this post as well as sharing the circle with me and Chris Yelton late last month where this topic was our focus.

The older I get the more all these topics come together as an integrated whole, unable to have any one without the other (otherwise it would be like hobbling along on one leg). The feminine with the masculine, the spiritual with the material, and the politics with living life for an integrated whole.

I am looking forward to seeing what other people in the world have to say about this subject.

As you know I am putting together a virtual think tank for transformational thinkers from around the world. I'm wanting a few more women from Arab, Asia and African countries and they are just now starting to respond to our invitations to become Fellows.

jumoke adegbonmire
نيجيريا

Politics ,Spirituality and Feminine

I would like to comment on these topics as a whole. For starters-politics and spirituality are somewhat interwined due to the fact that some leaders or countries will always look at things first of all from the spiritual point of view before considering the political implications it would have on its citizens. I believe spirituality is a personal thing between every individual and God.

Secondly,I'm a xtian and I tend to take my beliefs very seriously just like anybody else who takes their spiritual beliefs very seriously. But in my own opinion the issues that we all deal with as humanbeings or as females are all one and the same depending on where we live and what political/spiritual event is taking place at that time.And this in itself, is what, unites us irrespective of our race, color and background. This is the reason why our top people have to always first of all, look at the core roots of a problem rather than the religious values that need to be preserved.

Thirdly,as for the Feminine side-I believe it's not just the males that are at fault but also the women that chastise other women for their entitled freedom of speech, way of live and political views. Maybe, if we as women start distributing charity in our homes-then the men folks will start finding it a little bit too hard to penetrate our camps.

Lastly, there's one thing that I know for a fact-women are smarter and much wiser than men but the fear of being diffrent is our greatest undoing. In as much as we wnat to be 'politically out there' speaking for ourselves, we also have to be ready to bear the brunt of the whole thing. May we always find the strength and will power to do the right things.


Andre Sheldon
Andre Sheldon
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

A Call to Women

Dear Riane,

Women can change the world and bring peace. As women gain political clout, spirituality and the feminine will shine. You wrote it best in the Chalice and the Blade (C&B), “As this caring labor—the life-sustaining labor of nurturing, helping, and loving others—is fully integrated into the economic mainstream, we will see a fundamental economic and political transformation. Then, unified into the global family envisioned by the feminist, peace, ecology, human potential, and other gylanic movements, our species will begin to experience the full potential of its evolution.”

However, at the last two conferences on the Status of Women (CSW) at the UN, the reports showed a decline in the progress women have made, especially for participating in conflict resolution as Resolution 1325 designated. Change is difficult and comes slowly.

As you wrote in C&B, the long term answer lies in socialization, but also you alluded to creating change. Humans have the capacity and intellect to make it happen. I believe you wrote C&B to empower the women of the world, or “mobilize” the women of the world, to attain political clout.

How can women attain political clout if, as you wrote in the IMOW Forum, women are barred from social governance? In the global political arena, women are secondary. You wrote of the cultural transformation theory in the C&B, the changing of a male dominated society to a partnership society, as already happening. But you wrote, “What is still lacking is the “critical mass” of new images and myths that is required for their actualization by a sufficient number of people.” I propose a catalyst to attain critical mass.

It is time to make history. The world needs a “mandate”, a mandate for peace! The sages of history were all men. The new sages are the women. The new myth is women change the world – through illustrating nonviolence. I would like to suggest a strategy called a Global Strategy of Nonviolence, For the Children (GS of NV), to be led by women, but not exclusive to women. It would be implemented by an initiative called a Call to Women, a World-Wide Unity Campaign, as a catalyst.

Women must create a scenario where the media has no choice but to cover it – a Gandhi “Walk to the Sea.” This will take fortitude and strength. Starhawk, an author and activist, wrote about women standing for peace as the representation of a “vision of strength.” “Real security can come only when we weave a global web of mutual aid and support. As we make larger connections and take action together, we must assert what we as women know to be true: compassion is not weakness, and brutality is not strength.”

This is where the feminine and spirituality play an integral part. As my friend Meira said, first people must find inner peace. This is my spiritual connection. If women mobilize, it exhibits inner peace, which in turn, empowers others to see their inner peace.

This Forum is under the category of Women, Power, and Politics. A woman, or women, must come forward to lead the world in a nonviolent manner with spirituality and the feminine. But women are up against a Behemoth – corporate, military, and ideological power. Therefore, women must adopt a catalyst, a pre-emptive strike, a proactive action, for paradigm change to occur. A Call to Women is the catalyst.

The time has come for women leaders to promote a Call to Women. The main plan is a guideline, including administrative, funding, marketing, implementation, and follow-up strategies. Please consider taking a Call to Women on as your own, as this world experiences what you called an “early warning signal that a more repressive and bloody period of androcratic regression is about to set in.”

But, from C&B, “What may lie ahead is the final bloodbath of this dying system’s violent efforts to maintain its hold. But the death throes of androcracy could also be the birth pangs of gylany and the opening of a door into a new future.”

Please contact me to review the networking in place with Sister Joan Chittister, Dr. Helen Caldicott, Margarita Papandreou, plus many more. Thank you.

MARIETTA KARADIMOVA
MARIETTA KARADIMOVA
بلغاريا

a view

I think now things have changed a lot, and there is much more hidden violence than before...

Shaktima Brien
Shaktima Brien
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Inclusive vs exclusive language

The word Goddess contains God
The word woman contains man
The word she contains he

The term God excludes the feminine;
The term Goddess includes the masculine.

It is time that we use a vocabulary that represents Yin and Yang, -- not get personal with God, nor with Goddess, as if they exist out there. It is more mature for a wise soul to refer to female and male principles of life and death in the temporal, appearances and disappearances of shapes, forms, patterns or paradigms in the eternal.

To personify or get attached to a deity reflect dependent mind, need for romance (illusion) and despair to fill the void, the eternal.

Be Creatora, Creator yourself!

Grace Kadzere
Grace Kadzere
جنوب أفريقيا

Morning

I am an African woman and believe so much in peace and harmony in the whole world. I would love to be involved in your project.

Keep me posted.

Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Alternatives to seeing the world as Religious or Secular, Eastern or Western, capitalist or socialist

Much of my research and writing addresses a question that arose from my childhood. I could not understand why—when we humans have such a capacity for love, for caring, for creativity—there has been so much cruelty, insensitivity, destructiveness and violence.

I could not find answers to this question until after another pivotal turning point in my life. In the 1960s, along with thousands of other women, I suddenly woke up to realize that problems I thought were personal were social problems affecting millions of women worldwide. So my research was very different from conventional studies of society. Unlike them, I took into account gender roles and relations.

And what I found are patterns showing that the status of women is a critical factor in whether a society is violent and inequitable or more peaceful and equitable. I saw that these social patterns transcend the right-left, religious-secular, east-west, socialist-capitalist binaries. Since there were no names for these social patterns, I called one the partnership system and the other one the domination system. And again and again I saw that when women are subordinate, so also is what is stereotypically considered feminine: caring, nonviolence, empathy.

Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Riane Eisler

Good to hear from you, John!

Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Riane Eisler

Thank you Jumoke. I think you are so right that we must support one another as women, and help women who are still trapped in old traditions that deny women a voice to regards women as full human beings with the same rights as men.

Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Riane Eisler

Dear Andre:

Thank you for your letter -- I have had trouble accessing this site, but here I am at last.
I was moved by your deep understanding of my work, your quotes from Chalice, and your commitment to empowering women.

Your initiative is great, and I am contacting you about it, so you can tell me more about the network. You have my email, so please let me hear. warmest good wishes.

Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Riane Eisler

Thank you Marietta. I think that as women assert our rights, there is a violent backlash. At the same time, much of the violence against women has been hidden (and accepted) so that part of it is that we are seeing it recognized and discussed more.

Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Riane Eisler

Dear Shaktima:
I love your poem, and your thoughts and your creativity.
Yes, the language keeps us invisible, keeps people trapped in old ways of thinking. Have you read my book Sacred Pleasure? It is so aligned with your poem.

Riane Eisler
Riane Eisler
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

Riane Eisler

Dear Grace:
I would like to keep you posted. If you send your email to me at center@partnershipway.org we will put you on our email list. And please tell us more about yourself, what you are doing..
warmly,
Riane

karima zuhair
karima zuhair
ألمانيا

not only just to be..

hi Riane,
You know when I am in the three year old i had knew the God from my grandmother, she told me about the god when she is sitting on the wet thresholds ..
I had growing up in my grandfather house , whose died and leaving his wife , daughters , his son, and his sister .. and when my mother left me with my grandmother's the house was only women .. because the son had traveled to complete his postgraduate studies ..
In this house .. with the only women had tow polar the first is the judge and commander, and the force that changing,and the policy that defends
And demands , and impose the rights of women and freedom of them in a society .. this pole was sister of my grandfather.
And the second pole is Depend for power of the first pole .And the soldier that achieves victory for the commander to changing ,and she is the long prayers every night ,and she Was never Tired to speak with God ,and she is the patience ,she is
a love, and peace , she is a mother.
The pole was my grandmother .
.. between them i had growing up ..
And now I think that woman can to be both of bipolar Good
But the reality is governed by men. just to be only one of the poles ..
Sometimes politics is the force, and religion is the weak. or religion is the force , and the politics is the weak .
and sometimes Both of bipolar wearing the dress of other ..

As I said the women are able to be both of poles but also in there is women on the brink of death
And I hope that does not play the game that someone else play on us.


karima zuhair

Wangui Banks
Wangui Banks
الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية

I feel very sorry for men who dishonor women. By doing so they deny themselves the true beauty of an equal and loving relationship. They deny themselves true love and friendship. They do not even love themselves because they dishonor their mothers. In reality, they are the ones who are truly hurting.
The same goes for women who dishonor themselves by belittling the achievements of other women. The only reason I can think of is that they believe so little in themselves that they do not think they can ever live their dream life. If you believe that you cannot achieve anything because you are a woman, but at the same time another woman is fulfilling her dreams, this is like a slap in the face. Instead of rethinking their attitudes and positions, some women choose to denigrate the achiever and wish her failure.
Finally I feel sorry for parents who abuse their children. This is their opportunity to enjoy the purest of loves. To find a devotion equal to none. You find this child looking up to you, wanting to be you, soaking up every word you utter and every one of your actions. Abusing your child is the worst expression of self-hatred.

بطاقات: spirituality , feminine , political refugee , Europe , Cuba , partnership , أوروبا


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