Yesterday was International Women’s Day. A holiday to highlight the struggles for women for equality. And I kept thinking…stop, that’s not right. Why do we struggle for something we always have been?
Today, I want to step back and look at womanhood from an anthropological, historical, sociological and religious standpoint. To rediscover, what it means to be a woman…and an equal.
Let’s begin with what we know about our ancestors…in their caves. The closest analogy is probably a wolf pack. Though we believe they were polyamorous…had many partners. It mattered less then whose baby it was than that there were babies to continue the tribe. And yes, women worked then too. Closer to the cave, gathering food, so that they and the children could seek shelter from saber tooth tigers or whatever. That tells you loads right there…men hunted…and were expendable. Women and children were precious resources worthy of protection.
And first civilizations? Often the simple wooden cravings are of fecund woman…big tits and grotesquely huge bellies. Women were revered as the givers of life. Worshipped as goddess.
Then five thousand years ago or so, we began to settle in villages. Men began to claim land, fence it off and farm it. They began to CLAIM women and especially children…monogamy was created as a means of ensuring that land passed from father to son. Women went from being something worthy of protecting and worshipping to something that was owned.
It got worse once religions came into the picture. Male gods. Male prophets and priests. Legends that portrayed women as the origin of sin. As devious and deceitful. Whores looking to lead ‘good men’ astray. Or just as bad, desexualized virgins. We were forced into the back of churches, synagogues and mosques. Our heads…or sometimes head to toe…were covered…lest we lead the men into sin.
Contrast this to pagan and indigenous cultures…
Druids and Celts with priestesses dancing naked around the flames to welcome into seasons of Mother Earth…participants worshipping with wine and wild sex. Goddesses like Cerridwen, The Morrigan and Danu, her name means “knowledge” from her flowed all of life.
The Vikings where women ruled the homes…and sometimes the villages if the men were at war. Not that a good many of their sisters were not fighting right along side the men too. Ballads are sung of shieldmaidens like Brunhilda and Hervor. And goddess like Freyja and Ran.
Egypt was ruled by Queens like Cleopatra and goddesses like Isis and Anuket.
Even half a world a way the Aztecs and Mayans worshipped goddesses of Chalchiuhtlicue and Alaghom Naom, the Maya mother goddess. She is especially associated with thought and intellect, and is known as “Mother of Mind”.
And when I looked at Hindu…too many to name.
Native American cultures too protected and revered the role of women as sacred.
And today…indigenous people continue traditions that protect and revere women. Rape and domestic violence are brought to those people like the diseases of the white man. But we persist in calling them ‘uneducated’ and at the extreme…savages.
So, yes, I object to equality as the premise of International Women’s Day.
Instead of fighting the religions and laws of man, we should focus upon celebrating who and what we are…daughters of Frejya, Danu, Isis, Alaghom Naom and so many others…
Instead of standing before the seats of power of men…protesting and begging for that which already resides inside of all of us…
How about we all throw off our shirts (and more if we wish)…dance in the moonlight around the fires…or dance naked in the rain…and celebrate the goddess powers within us. We are after all more than 50% of this world. And I bet you that would scare the shit out of them loads more than the biggest protest we could organize.
Quit fighting for what we already have…and channel the uniquely feminine powers of the goddesses within all of us. That is something worth celebrating.