“There is an age when one teaches what one knows. But there follows another when one teaches what one does not know…the age of another experience: that of unlearning…”
Happy Super Moon & International Women’s Day!
It has been 8 months since I first discovered the community of MCC. It was in the heart of a beautiful summer season, and I was in serious need of robust lessons of “unlearning”. It was uncomfortably hot those first few Sunday’s. It was a perfect metaphor of the heated, and deeply inconvenient inner questioning I was in the midst of. My life long certainty that I would never feel at home in a Christian church was melting.
My radar for misogyny, sexism and micro-aggressions of all shapes and sizes came with me at birth. My insight were first formally announced at the age of five when I stated to my mother that I would no longer go to Church “because the Priest only spoke to the boys and was not nice to the girls”. That was age 5…it seemed an unlikely proposition, that one so unable to ignore the nuance of adult behaviours, would ever find a place of peace, to rest, whole, complete & at home in HERself within such an obviously patriarchal institution.
You see, I believe that International Womyn’s Day was born out of the wise sharp toothed force of the feminine within us all. Born out of wordless spaces...our souls compass...the deep wells of wisdom that can FEEL the impact inside the actions of being othered, even when we lack the words to describe it.
At five I was still too young to have learned that “good girls and lady’s” don’t name uncomfortable truths out loud, but I was born a poet, and a lover of nature. I am magnetically drawn to beauty and dissonance in equal measure. It was with a natural, and innocent curiosity, that I continuously bombarded my family and friends with questions. My questions centred around inconsistencies - the difference between stated beliefs and observed behaviours, and how often the two were not in harmonious relationship within me, or seemingly, the world around me.
Naming uncomfortable truths, and asking pointed questions was a brave muscle I was born flexing. It is a gift that was planted within me from all the womyn who came before me. It is the strength at the heart of my easily observed vulnerabilities. It is also the shine I strove to smother for much of my life in an attempt to feel safer, accepted, and to be anything but fully seen.
Seen was never fully safe. It still isn’t.
But now, speaking truth, creating beauty out of pain is worth all the risk required.
International Women’s Day is a day that is filled with uncomfortable truths for me. It holds all the trials, triumphs and traumas womyn kind hold in our bodies silently, daily, sometimes unconsciously. It is a day worthy of celebration and remembrance. The consciousness at the centre of International Womyn’s Day is an idea who’s time has long since come. It is a day to Celebrate how far we have come. A moment to honour the womyn who in times and eras MUCH less hospitable than today were brave enough to fight for change, for justice, to be treated with dignity, and afforded the right to their own dreams.
It is a day for Remembering that International Womyn’s Day is not meant to be a day at all, and its impact is not solely for the benefit of womyn. It is a day that calls us to stand and speak on behalf of the full spectrum expression of life. To name uncomfortable truths and rise into the beauty of human potential. The limitations placed upon the bodies and souls of womyn, do damage to all living beings. When we steal the strength of womyn, we insult the and damage the capacity for emotional intelligence within men. When create binary divisions between each other, and ascribe kindness, empathy and compassion as the sole domain of womyn, we water down the power of community, connection and the living body of love/Christ in our midst.
I am a bi-sexual, cis-gendered womyn, a survivor of violence, and thriver within the limitations of an invisible disability.
The challenges within my life have been public and painful.
The violence and vitriol dolled out at the hands of both institutions and individuals are not antiquated behaviours of the past. They are the human responses to the discomfort felt when uncomfortable truths refuse to remain silent any longer.
Rooted in and raised within a global culture that espouses female to be the equivalent to weak, queer to be questionable, and disabled to mean undesirable has done damage. It has also rooted out a deep bellied roar for righteousness. To lean in to right relationship, first with ourselves and then with each other,
On International Womyn’s Day I celebrate all those willing to lean into the potency of remembering the strength of the feminine within. To encourage, support and celebrate those that craft safe space for the power of the empathic and maternal masculine, and in doing so claim the power of the living Christ. Neither male, nor female - fully human, fully divine.
What I have learned is this, on IWD, and all days I pray for, and take action towards loving all parts of me - especially the parts I find most challenging. For it is here, at the ground zero of embracing our vulnerabilities that joy…deep, gritty, enduring joy can be found and sustained.
May this IWD gift us all the capacity to empower difficult truths to be the gentle water, that over time will wear down limiting barriers and beliefs created within us, and all around us.
May this IWD be the start of many years to come where together we can take action from a place of courageous personal truth, and roar right relationship into being embracing fully our soulful, sensual and spiritual selves.
Artist. Speaker. Teacher.
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