Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Honouring the Feminine: Alice Walker in dialogue

I listened to a dialogue between author/activist Alice Walker and Jungian analyst, Harry Fogarty. Titled, "Alice Walker on Faith, Nature and Social Activism" (part of the Red Book Dialogues), a lot of the conversation revolved around the idea of the Feminine.

Walker talked about how long ago, reverence of the Feminine was common practice but fear of the free Feminine and its power (specifically creation), led men to subdue it. Men wanted soldiers, warriors and employees and so needed to control the "source" of production. This is Walker's theory on how our patriarchal world came to be. Because women are forced to produce, we have overpopulation. Overpopulation that is so unsustainable that our planet (i.e. our environment) is making us pay the price.

How does religion fit in all this? Walker connects the dominating and domineering attributes of religion as contributing to the destruction of the planet and hopes "that we can, by reinstating the Feminine, bring balance to some of the ideology that has been so harmful." She brings up individual responsibility as a solution to countering this ideology,

"We have drifted too long in this … nightmare dream that somehow we are being saved by something beyond ourselves. We're not. It's impossible. We have to do the whole work …
If you take care of your own demons, that's saving the world, because they don't then run all over the place and destroy other people."

A self-proclaimed Animist and Pagan, Walker suggests that the Self is the starting point.

Further investigation: the idea of the Feminine

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