300 years of the slave trade completely ravaged Africa. It completely created large tracts of desert. There were inter tribal wars, hate and paranoia. The slave traders perspective was that the blacks were sub human. It absolved them with any sense of empathy with the conditions…
….What has 5000 years of subjugation and suppression done to women? How has it impacted our collective psyche? What is the equivalent with paranoia? If 44% men surveyed in India think women are inferior (sub human??) what is the implication…?
The Invisibility of Women
Sadhana was deeply disturbed. She had just come home from attending her first Women’s Circle. A gathering of women like she had never experienced before. Perfectly sane, ‘normal’, educated and emancipated women like herself had sat in a circle and shared their deepest hopes, fears and needs. There was something about the circle, and the process, that had brought out truths that she had known but not been able to speak about. More disturbingly, also truths she did not even know she didn’t know. …perhaps buried deep in her unconscious, that had surfaced as woman after woman shared.
Truths about the inequity, inequality, negative stereotypes and unconscious biases that women, like her, even like her!, still faced in the 21st century!
Women, who walked in a ‘free society’, still walk in fear of violation. They see themselves as human beings, who can be over-powered by others stronger than them. In a day and age where we are questing for success rather than survival, you would think our deepest fear would be to fail somehow. But Sadhana had heard again and again that every woman’s deepest fear is to to be violated somehow. Not just emotionally but physically.
She mulled, “… 300 years of the slave trade completely ravaged Africa. It completely created large tracts of desert. There were inter tribal wars, hate and paranoia. The slave traders’ perspective was that the blacks were sub human. It absolved them from any sense of empathy with their conditions…
….What then has 5000 years of subjugation and suppression done to women? How has it impacted our collective psyche? What is the equivalent with paranoia? If 44% men surveyed in India think women are inferior (sub human??) what are the implications…”
She had been called to the circle in answer to a sudden urgency that she felt in finding answers. There was something sub-human in the way a group of men, like a pack of opportunistic dogs, had sexually and physically overpowered and abused women in two of the most horrific cases of rape in the metros.
She trawled through the internet in search for understanding and came across the research on Social Dominance Theory. That studies how power tends to get polarised between ‘dominant’ and ‘subordinate’ social groups. There was an age of owners vs slaves, then colonisers vs colonised and, right through it all it seemed, men vs women. While one social group dominated over its other half, a strange psychological and behavioral phenomenon was observed: The dominant group stopped ‘seeing’ the subordinate group. It was as if they were invisible to them. ‘Sub-human’ or objects meant to serve the Dominators’ needs; the Subordinates were no different from the land or insentient materials to be mined or harvested or exploited.
“Mother,” she asked horrified as she started seeing the invisibility of women being perpetrated in subtle and not-so-subtle ways in all domains of life, “why…? how…?”
A debilitating rage and shame rose up as she confronted her own oft experienced impotence and her invisibility.
In the great Quiet of her being, Shakti speaks:
“Come into your stillness, come to Me. Let Me breathe with you.
Being Visible, Being Invisible.
Feeling Comfort, Feeling Discomfort.
Breathe with Me and master these polarities. Flow with each.
And find your Freedom in that Flow..
Be with one, then just as easily be with the other. Like inhale.. and exhale.
Om Ma ….Om Sri Ma.
Emergence now…Dissolution now
Ease now…Churn now
Allow each experience and move through each experience. With Presence. And release Me, your Shakti locked in them. Become. More. Power-ful.
Look deeper. Is there perhaps a secret purpose to your humiliation? Humiliation leads to humility… In humiliation could lie the cradle of glory?
When you lose your sense of self-worth, your ego-self experiences wounding. This pain and powerlessness causes you to journey within, awaken and bring forth your true power, your Shakti. And you then achieve your real worth, your worthiness to be and to become the all that is.
Exhale and disappear fully, inhale and emerge truly.
Emerge to claim and fulfill your unique place in this grand Evolution.
This is My built-in design, to evolve Creation.
It is OK to be visible. It is OK to be invisible. Both are choices for you to make and experience. Show up and shine through. Emerge out of the testing fire of your dominator. Equally, master invisibility, and learn how to surrender your ego to My higher plan. How else are you to come into your own, your true, enlightened power?”