Coming into contact with the Mother is coming into contact with a force of passionate and active compassion in every area and dimension of life, a force that longs to be invoked by us to help transform all the existing conditions of life on earth so that they can mirror ever more clearly and accurately her law, her justice, and her love.
By Andrew Harvey
If only you could hear Andrew Harvey speak about the return of the sacred feminine and the awakening of the fierce feminine (AKA FIERCE COMPASSION) that he and others believe holds the key to the transformation in humanity. I found it fitting with Mother’s Day today, to honor the Sacred Feminine, in all beings (male or female) even within ourselves. There are many gifts that come from connecting to the sacred feminine and one that can be uncovered and nurtured through mindfulness. It is deeply needed in our world, namely “discernment”, the ability to hear different points of view and act from a place of wisdom, rather than defensiveness. Discernment is desperately needed today, to find solutions to epic crises, both within and across nations that are grounded in fear and violence among people, nations, and the earth itself. Discernment reminds me of Wise Mind, and I think Harvey postulates that this discernment also lies deep within and must be awakened. In DBT we teach that Wise Mind exists in each one of us, but often is covered up or clouded by judgments, strong emotions, and cultural and familial conditioning. This ability to know TRUTH, speak TRUTH, and live in TRUTH can be witnessed when the Fierce Compassion of the Feminine, combined with the power of the masculine, is awakened and liberates us to be our authentic self. Sounds amazing and inspiring when Harvey speaks, yet in everyday life can be scary and threatening because of the embedded social conditioning of males and females to live according to the belief that a male or female should think, believe, and act from a gender specific stereotyped way.
This conditioning starts as soon as a baby is identified as male or female in our culture. We experience both the subtle and overt shaping of stereotypical norms via reinforcement of expected behaviors and punishment of anything displayed that conflicts with anything that does not align with the social, cultural, and religious expectations. Yet within all beings there are both feminine and masculine qualities and energies that when fostered and combined lead to acting from a deeply wise place and result in the kind of discernment necessary for transforming us from a world of fear and separation to a world of love and connection. Revolutionary? – Hell yes! Please note this awakening is just as important for men as it is for women. It is equally imperative for men to awaken the feminine that has been disallowed and left men imbalanced with only aggression and power as their source of strength as it is for women to honor their feminine and awaken their masculine energies.
This week loin us in honoring the feminine in all beings, including ourselves.
Sit quiet for a few minutes in meditation, long enough to settle the mind and body or use a moving meditation to settle and then rest in awareness of your breath.
When you feel centered, connect with the place you sense your wisdom or truth arising from (some find the heart/chest, and others find the belly) a space you can sense the truth.
Placing a hand on that part of the body, take a few moments to honor the sacred feminine that lives within. Connecting with the aspects of your nature that are nurturing, loving, passionate, and playful. The softer part of you, the part that feels a desire to help the crying baby, an injured animal, or a group of people suffering devastating loss. Perhaps recalling when you were loved and cared for by another being, perhaps a mother or father, a caregiver, a grandparent, a friend, or even a spiritual teacher or therapist. Honoring the feminine qualities of love, nurturing, and compassion transmitted toward you and if you can sense and feel the sensation of being cared about, allowing some time to savor and appreciate it.
Practice patience and understanding if this feeling does not arise, if instead there is pain, loss, or sadness that arises. This is perfectly natural and simply reveals the part of you that longs to receive the love and nurturing or is missing a loved one who has passed or is far away. Take some time to offer self-compassion and care toward yourself via a self-compassion break. This will awaken the feminine that lives with in you.
If instead you experience anger, fear or judgment, no worries- this is perfectly normal as well and represents the masculine part of you awakening to protect from any potential painful emotions and unmet needs that still exists deep inside. Practice patience and understanding that it can be scary and threatening to open up to any painful, hidden emotions or unmet needs. Take a moment to name what you are experiencing, take a few deep cleansing breaths, and then move on to another activity for now.
Overcoming the conditioning in our culture is not easy, and certainly is not attained quickly. This may be one of the essential tasks in life, to uncover the lost parts of our self and become whole. All of our offerings at the Sacred Treehouse cultivate wise mind living, through practices of mindfulness and self compassion. Keep following us on FACEBOOK.
May all beings everywhere honor Mother Earth, and the feminine life-giving nature that lives within all of us.
Happy Mother’s Day! With love,
Patty and the Sacred Treehouse Faculty
Patty Thomas Shutt, founder of Sacred Treehouse, is a licensed psychologist and co-owner of Therapeutic Oasis of the Palm Beaches. Dr. Shutt is passionate about helping others discover the benefits of mindfulness and meditation. She offers Beginner Meditation & Advanced Meditation classes at Sacred Treehouse, in addition to Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, Mindful Self-Compassion and various book studies throughout the year.