Whenever I or others question anything about women and victimhood, there are often accusations of being misogynist, which – as someone who has devoted a good portion of my life to loving the Feminine and supporting women’s empowerment – is so far from the truth I struggle to find the motivation for self-defence.
I love women!! And in my bones I know that the story that we’re feeding ourselves about women being victims to the evils of patriarchy is not as simple as that.
On one level women are genuine victims to countless accounts of oppression and abuse. And on another hand, we’ve not really been very smart…
…Yes, I love women!!… and I say it again: I don’t think we’ve been very smart!!
If we really wanted to stop oppression, couldn’t we have done?
What would have happened if we had stopped having sex with men who are oppressors? If we only had sex with men who cherished the earth? Is the reality really as black and white that we have been completely helpless? An opinion could be that we would have been forced and raped and killed and had no choice. Or another opinion could be that we have had more choices but we chose to go against our integrity and chose the easier option. We chose wealth and status and security over our love and guardianship over the planet.
How come no one is talking about that? Can we face that truth and still have compassion and understanding for women?
Can we love women and see them as divine incarnations, but still stumbling and learning and making mistakes, just as men?
I think it’s great to bring anything in the shadows out into the open like the #metoo movement has. It’s a really exciting time right now! And yet my fear is that without diving into deeper layers, we forget about some things I believe are really important:
a) It perpetuates the idea that men are perpetrators and women are innocent victims, who unlike men, don’t have any issues with abusive power dynamics. This is not so! Putting men in the box of perpetrators is demeaning and belittling and I believe perpetuates that reality – and ultimately we end up using our victim-status to steal back our power. This is not to say that individual women who have come out with their #metoo’s are over-identifying with being victims – I am talking about a larger, more pervasive cloud that hovers over us collectively, that we are largely unaware of.
b) It ignores the fact that although there are many cases of ‘no’s’ being ignored, many of us are not good at setting boundaries and there are also grey cases where there is not an explicit ‘no’, although it is invading a boundary. By writing this I do not mean that women who aren’t able in the moment to say no are not victims or deserve being abused. I’ve been there myself many times, and we deserve enormous compassion and understanding too.
c) It creates further fear and suppression of our sexuality. I believe one of the reasons we have such rampant levels of sexual abuse is because of sexual repression. Our sexual energy is the strongest force we have – we need more education and encouragement on how to be sensual, erotic beings with reverence and respect for one another. We need to find more ways to see the sacred in our sexuality – rather than oscillating between repression and exploitation. At the root of a man’s desire for sex – even if expressed in a distorted and inappropriate way – is something sacred.
If the #metoo movement doesn’t create more of a feeling that we’re all in this together… that as well calling out and facing the shadow of abuse and saying ‘enough is enough’, we women look at our own shadow of how we have contributed to this world and start focusing on what the most powerful course of action now is, then I believe this movement has failed. Yes we need anger and indignation and calling out. But it’s the first step of a longer journey…
Ultimately, on a deeply transpersonal level, the only conclusion that I can come to is that on some kind of soul level, we women agreed to give our power away and men agreed to abuse it, so that we would learn about power. Through the countless tragedies, we can see and experience it’s abuse when it arises from separation, scarcity and a need to control, and it’s sacred purpose of creating beauty and cultivating togetherness in the world…and have our hearts broken and opened in deep love and compassion to one another in the process.