Where There is a Woman


 

 

 

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“Where there is a woman, there is magic.”     —-Ntozake Shange

One of the most famous magical textbooks is The Key of Solomon the King. Like the quest for the Holy Grail, the search for Solomon’s secret manuscript containing his spells, invocations, talismans, formulas, diagrams, and rituals has tantalized and tortured practitioners of the esoteric arts—-from alchemists to mathematicians—for centuries. The thought of what he could do with Solomon’s jottings kept Sir Issac Newton up at night; nonetheless he managed to accomplish quite a bit on his own during the day. That is because Newton, considered the modern world’s first and greatest scientist, was also a passionate mystic and one of the world’s last and greatest magicians.

Michael White tells us in his biography, Issac Newton: The Last Sorcerer that he was not the pure scientist of lore. Unknown to all but a few people, he was a mystic, an alchemist and he dabbled in the occult. He did not discover gravity by watching an apple fall—in reality, Newton’s great theories were grasped within the charred base of the crucible and the alchemist’s fire. Nor was Newton the idealistic puritan he has been portrayed to be. He risked his health in his unrelenting search for an understanding of the Universe.  He studied the Bible for divination and not dogma, he practiced natural magic, he studied astrology and numerology when he conducted mathematical experiments.

Newton did not live a very happy life, because he had to present himself to the world as a pure scientist. His discoveries and revelations would not have been believed otherwise.  He feared having his scientific contributions discredited and his work amounting to nothing. He feared damage to the intellectual alchemy that transformed mankind’s view of the Universe and our place in it.

So Newton hid a large part of himself to be accepted by society and the church. Women today often have to face the same pressures and the same inability to be real to the world. How often do you play like you have no real opinions because friends do not want to hear them? How often do women ignore there gifts and accomplishments? Not only ignore but play them down. Women ask themselves if they are really worthy of being called intelligent, gorgeous, talented. In truth, each of us women are a child of the Universe. We are the child of The One. When women play “small” we are not helping the Universe. When a woman shrinks into the shadows she is not being enlightened. Men have always stood up proud and loudly proclaimed their accomplishments. Each man and woman has gifts from The One that we are to give from the world. Don’t hide, use what you have been given to help the world. Shine your light and give the world the benefits of the gifts you have been given to share.

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Remember that as women we are not less than. Women have accomplished much in the world but have felt they have to hide it.  So whatever your gift, even the ability to spread the magic in the world or to sing and bring tears to someone’s eyes. Magic is simply the ability to use the energy that flows around us here on our planet and throughout the Universe. Open up to all that you can find in the Universe. And share it with all the other people you meet in your life.

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       Be the magic in the world!

 

 

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God’s Children Include Women


Women can not be equal without legally being equal.

Women can not be equal without legally being equal.

Our world is living within a horrible hangover. In most religious communities there is something leftover from the past. It is the subordination and subjugation of women. We are striving to live in a world very different from that of our ancestors. Now this has been a cultural earthquake. Many people from different cultures are grasping to hold on, to hold on to their version of the past.  They want the past to remain immovable.  There are people who are even coerced into sexism.

The Vatican has tried to do this with Catholic nuns. American Catholic bishops consult with women to try to make them not use contraceptions. Without adequate contraceptives the size of families becomes too large to give each child the education they need to be productive members of our world.

In Israel, some state-supported Orthodox people have used physical violence. Groups of Jewish women have been praying as a group, chanting and wearing prayer shawls at the Western Wall. Jewish traditions see the Wall as the refuge of Shechinah, the Feminine Indwelling Immanent aspect of God, after the destruction of the nearby Temple.

This war on women

This war on women

We are moving into a new world, given us by God. Women and men are learning the difficult practice of dancing in God’s earthquake. Men and women need to resist the subjugation of women. Women who have tried to pray at the Western Wall are being mishandled and forced to leave the Wall because it is holy and women have no right to pray there.

In other countries, women are still participating in genital mutilation. Female midwives with the cooperation of mothers, will perform a clitorectomy and cut out the clitoris. This makes sure the child will never enjoy sex when she grows up. In some countries, the vagina is sown up to prevent her from having sex with a different man while her husband is away on business. A girl who has not had this done will not be able to marry. No one will want her. These procedures are done without anesthesia or pain medication.  These procedures make child birth more dangerous. I don’t know about everyone else but this makes me want to throw up.

Women are equal and deserve to receive equal pay for equal work. They deserve equal recognition for their work. They also deserve promotions when their work equals that of a male co-worker.

Two thirds of females in the world are illiterate.

Two thirds of females in the world are illiterate.

The majority of women in the world are considered so insignificant that it is felt they are not worth educating. They stay at home while brothers go off to schools to learn to do math and to read. This is why Oprah’s schools for girls are so important. Knowing someone believes in them helps them to believe in themselves. They know, when they are grown up they will be able to get a job in a city and save money to help their families.

God did not make a mistake when he created Eve, if you accept the story. Eve was not a secondary creation.  I think that if there was a serpent and he talked Eve into eating the forbidden fruit, then she made a choice. Adam also made a choice. When she offered the apple to Adam, he could have said no. He was responsible for his choice not to say no. Eve was not at fault. Women don’t have to carry that guilt. There is also a legend in Judiasm that Lillith was created to be Adam’s partner and she lived with him in equality. Adam complained to God and he got Eve instead.

Whatever you believe, women are equal. All human beings are equal. Where inequality remains, we will squelch it and make sure everyone is equal. Teach your daughters to be confident in themselves and your sons to respect women.

Betty is a feminist to help women receive equality

Betty Freidan is a feminist and writer who worked to help women receive equality

The Lives of Women


No matter how old you are, walk your truth

A woman writes herself a life each day as she moves in the now. Virginia Woolf said that only women stirred her imagination. I would add only women have moved me to action and power. If I would write my life it would be to try to protect other women from tragedy and abuse and grief. It would be to say my complete truth without fear of consequences.

Often in literature and in every day life, women’s every day life, our friendships are belittled, and misunderstood. Yet, as women, friendships enliven us, fill us up and give us a way out of lonely grief.

” Affection…means the state of influencing, acting upon, moving, and impressing, and of being influenced by other women.”—-Janice Raymond

Audra Lorde once stated, ” I speak without concern for the accusations
that I am too much or too little woman
that I am too black or too white
or too much myself
and through my lips come the voices of the ghosts
of our ancestors
living and moving among us.”

“To justify an unorthodox life by writing about it is to re-inscribe the original violation, to re-violate masculine turf.” —Nancy K. Miller

Celebration of being a woman

Celebration of our lives as women

Why I Remain a Feminist


Quote from Maya Angelou

Quote from Maya Angelou

I initially became a feminist because of books. I was taking some continuing education classes in nursing. One book I had to read discussed the “The Burning Times.” These were in the good old days when women were midwives. Men felt that taking care of sick people was beneath them. Midwives got paid in a pie, some vegetables, some homemade bread. They were also more than expert in herbs and healing plants. Because of the nature of such a woman, she often enjoyed gentle relationships with the animals around her cabin or home.

There were a few men who exhibited the same gifts. Today we would call them feminist men. I am sure everyone knows some. The Church, in those days found it hard to handle midwives and healing women.

We are looking at the time in history of the Spanish Inquisition. Protestants had to confess after torture, Jews fled to present-day Europe and the Ottoman empire. Special priests were sent out to root out and to kill the blasphemers who said they could heal. As time went on, village after village suffered through “witch trials.” Many good and caring women went to their deaths because they were deemed witches. Children had no protection from these accusations. They often would be tortured and would speak the name of someone they knew. They would call someone a witch, just to get the pain to end.

It is said that over 2 million women were murdered for being witches.  This was also a holocaust. At this time, midwives went underground and men began to look to medicine as a way to make a living. So men suddenly had good reason to ensure that no healing women or witches were in their communities. Much information about the healing effects of herbs was lost for a very long time.

I was interested in what I was reading and took more books out of the library. I couldn’t stop reading and thinking about these women. There is an article you might be interested in reading called “Witches, Midwives and Nurses”, by B. Ehrenreich and D English.. It can be found at .www.blancmange.net/tmh/articles/witches.html.

To this day women’s medical practice has thrived in the midst of rebellious lower class movements. These witch hunts for the midwives did not stop these healing and caring women,, but the midwives where often branded as superstitious and possibly malevolent.

I read all this, and another feminist was born. I got involved with other concerned women in my community and we tried to assess women’s needs in our community. What we discovered was that women were being abused in their homes. So we started a shelter for abused women. We had no money, but we got a rundown old house in a bad neighborhood and the Jewish, Protestant and Catholic women worked long and hard to save these battered women and their children. Some of the Catholic women were nuns and I remember that we all “planted” a penny in the tree lawn of that house and the nuns prayed for the women and children who would be saved. Today that shelter, started in the 1970′s has a budget of nearly a million dollars a year. I am still a feminist because they need every penny of that budget to continue to protect the women and kids.

Children are also beaten

Children are also beaten

This may be happening to someone you know...like your sister, your cousin, the neighbor, your minister's wife, or the wife of that nice young family who always comes to church.

This may be happening to someone you know…like your sister, your cousin, the neighbor, your minister’s wife, or the wife of that nice young family who always comes to church.

As our society becomes more violent, with mass shootings and other community violence, Domestic Violence is not shrinking. Nearly forty years after domestic violence shelters and programs were established in this country, we are still taking pictures of injuries, advocating for abused women in court and hiding them until they and their children can get safely away from the abuser. Oh, I must not forget to tell you that more women are killed trying to get out than at any other time in the battering relationship.

This is the number one reason I am still a feminist, however it isn’t the only reason.  I am concerned that women are not legally equal, and do not get paid the same as a man for the same work.  And so, I fight on.

Together we can gain our legal equality. Together we can take care of each other. Together we can become equal partners.  Together we might just add some peace to the world.

You can't beat a woman!

You can’t beat a woman!

Please remember the extreme danger many women are in and talk to the young women and girls. It isn't their fault. They were victims.

Please remember the extreme danger many women are in and talk to the young women and girls. It isn’t their fault. They were victims.

One of my Sheroes…Adrienne Rich


Adriene Rich

Adrienne Rich

Adrienne Rich is a prolific writer. She has written prose, poems, and feminist thoughts. One of my favorites is Twenty-one love poems. One of her feminist pieces is Of Woman Born. It was originally printed in 1977 but remains relative to the lives of women now,  in 2013. When she began to write on this subject she had become aware of the new politicization of women. We were in the middle in of the second Feminist Movement. One subject not addressed was women as mothers.

The devaluation of women spurred her on to write and examine women’s lives; even mothers. The Women’s Movement has had detractors but we really did want to work to raise the value of women; whether she was an at-home mom or she was in the work force. As the movement began, many women stayed home and when given the opportunity to go out into the work world, chose it instead. Some women did both. The media put much pressure on women to be “super women.” This was not the intention of the movement. We simply wanted women to have a  choice and the right to make the choices that were the best for her. Therefore, this book is an exercise in examining motherhood for all women and also for Adrienne. Maternity deserved to be examined. It is an American institution.

There were attempts to show the patriarchy the value of women in the work place and well as in the home. Equal pay for equal work came into the light and also the value of the work women did in the home was also spotlighted. Every woman has a job description and a monetary value was given to each job task she performed. When all was said and done, most at home wives and mothers couldn’t be afforded by their husbands except for the very well-to-do.

Rich brought into the light the fact that women are as intrinsically human as any man.  The ability to control her reproductive health is vital for women to be equal. This is why it goads so many non-feminist citizens. Most work on this planet is done by women. In all countries, women have the children, feed them, raise and clothe them. They work in factories and sweatshops, clean the house and make coffee in the office. Procreative choice is as important as a legally limited work day.

All human life on the planet is born of women. Being born is the one unifying, incontrovertible experience that men and women share. Young human beings spend more years needing the nurturing of a mother  than other mammals.  Some sociologists believe that part of the discrimination against women is the discomfort many men feel knowing they were dependent on a woman for nine months. Rich raised three sons and was married. So I recommend that you look into Rich’s work and see what you think about what the Feminist author has to say.

Sketch of Adrienne Rich

Sketch of Adrienne Rich

Headlines

New Worlds

New Worlds


Our founding president, Gloria Steinem, is turning 79 on March 25th and there are 79 reasons why YOU should celebrate with us! Sign Gloria’s Birthday card here:http://forwomen.org/79reasons

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Gloria Steinem is my role model. She is a feminist and a woman who has given her life to women’ s issues and the problems we face each day in our lives. She was also the head of Ms. Magazine, which I read cover to cover every month. She has inspired and shared the work of changing the way society looks at women. Yes, it has been much worse, much worse.

I have had the privilege of meeting her and talking with her. So I am wishing Ms. Steinem a wonderful birthday and may you have many, many more. Those of us who were on the battle lines with you appreciate what you helped us to do! May it be the best of years.

Rape Culture


Normally I would never post this video but our society is condoning rape. I pulled this off of YouTube and it sickened me. As I have said so many times, rape has nothing to do with sex and everything to do with power and control. The young men in this video are the basest of human beings. This is important to me because it speaks to The War Against Women and it happened here in Ohio, the state where I now live.

The boys came from middle class families and had good prospects for their futures. Because of the choice they made, they aren’t even descent enough human beings to pick up garbage. This is not an isolated crime, it happens all the time in all countries around the world. A woman is not a piece of property to be used and discarded. It is clear in the video that no one taught this concept to these boys. Why? Perhaps the parents feel women are to be owned. Perhaps there  is violence in their homes.

In this particular rape case are fragments of the thinking behind all of the rape cases here and around the world that it is just sex and not a crime. A woman isn’t raped because she is a whore. She is raped because, even in 2013, women are considered property. The fact that the town tried to protect the boys who committed this horrible crime is enough to make me throw up. There isn’t privilege  for the high school jocks, or professional sports figures. They don’t get to rape a woman without paying a heavy price. If a guy rapes a woman, his future needs to be and will be gone.

Women who are raped don’t just get up and go on with life. They feel degraded and dirty. Some shower over and over because they no longer feel clean. This is something I can understand. Women who are raped are victims and don’t need to be revictimized by the media, friends, the judicial system, or their own families. They need support and counseling.

It is vital that their names are not put into the media. This case violated this concept that we worked on in the 70′s and 80′s. Previous sexual experience is also not allowed into court testimony. If a woman has had consensual sex and later is raped, the previous experience does not mean she can be raped without consequence. We keep going in circles about women’s issues.  In 2013, we are once again in a war against women.

Now, The National Organization for Women.stopping abuse and rape.

Now, The National Organization for Women.
stopping abuse and rape.

There is only one reason for rape and it is a crime.

There is only one reason for rape and it is a crime.

Beautiful Image


Botanical gardens

Botanical gardens Photography copyrighted by Barbara Mattio

The Romans had a ritual of lifting nieces and nephews to the rising sun. This image bonded the sisters into the circle of family. These women shared in the fruitfulness of their sisters’ lives and symbolically took responsibility for all the children of the community.

Today, we are not bonded in our communities. There is freedom that few experienced in earlier times. But the price is the loneliness that comes from severed connections. We have lost the responsibility for ourselves and the other people around us.

Celtic woman

Celtic woman

“This is the day when dawn
receives our saffron cakes
in her sacred temple.
This is the day which honors
the bond between sisters
and the freedom of all women.
There is no slavery today at the threshold of the temple. Today all women
are joined in the joys of motherhood:
for we hold up, not our own, but our sisters’ children to the sun.” –Ovid, Fasti

One Woman, One World, One Family, unending love.

One Woman, One World, One Family, unending love.

We Did It !!!! Don’t Hit a Woman, Now it is a Crime Once Again


This is the Cycle of Violence. Do you see someone you know in it?

This is the Cycle of Violence. Do you see someone you know in it?

Thank you Congress for keeping all women safe

Thank you Congress for keeping all women safe

It will now go to President Obama who will sign it into law.

It will now go to President Obama who will sign it into law.

"Now

Never let a man slap, kick, punch, push, verbally insult or demean you. Call the police. It is a crime!

Never let a man slap, kick, punch, push, verbally insult or demean you. Call the police. It is a crime!

]America, stop teaching that violence against women is allowed. America, stop teaching that violence against women is allowed.

The Violence Against Women that Just passed the Senate and now the House will be signed into law by President Obama.

The Violence Against Women Act that Just passed the Senate and now the House will be signed into law by President Obama.

Women are not Legally Equal


Justice for Women

Justice for Women

This is the year to get the Equal Rights Amendment passed. Congress needs to do much more to stop the War on Women. This is a very important issue.

The Amendment is divided into three sections and I will lay them out. Everyone needs to understand this Ammendment and to push Congress to quit playing games and roll up their sleeves and go to work for the American Woman.

Many are questioning the importance of the ERA, but here are some reasons for women and men to support the passage of the Amendment in 2013. I hope this might clear up questions people might have and make it possible to see why this Amendment is important actually vital in our country.

Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.
The Congress shall have the power to enforce by appropiate legislation, the provisions of this article.
This Amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification.
Women are not a proteted class.I am going to discuss some ways this Amendment will benefit women.

Say yes to the ERA

Say yes to the ERA

First of all, the Amendment will protect women in the workplace. If a woman finds that her male coworker is earning more money and the woman sues the company, the Amendment will be cited and the company will be forced to give a reason why the woman is earning less. If there is no reason besides gender, the Constitution will protect her.

Another area where this Amendment will defend women is the charge of rape. If there is a rape and the woman presses charges and it goes to court the Constitution can prevent the woman from being victimized again. Rape is not a sexual act. It is all about power and control. Eighty year old women have been raped. Men use rape to control the woman.

So In court, if the defense attorney brings up that she has had alcohol or was wearing a short skirt or went out on a date with a man, the Constitution will protect the woman from gender discrimination. Men are not blamed when they are  victimized  if they have had a drink or if they look sexy.

Insurance companies discriminate on gender to determine how much a person’s premium will be. The Amendment will protect women from having to pay higher premium rates.  A Constitutional Amendment will ensure equal treatment and it is necessary to protect women’s rights for all time.

Women are now able to serve in the military if they wish. Unfortunately, many have been raped (power and control). The officers have been turning their heads and allowing men to get away with this horrible act. This is gender bias.
Women can now be drafted into the military and they must be treated the same as their male counterparts.

The organization UniteWoman.org is leading the effort to get this Amendment passed by Congress. A White House petition has recently received the number of signatures to be addressed by President Obama. Another organization working towards the huge job of getting this Amendment passed is NOW.  NOW stands for the National Organization of Women. It has been working for decades to promote equality for women. I have been a member for many years. Most cities have a branch of  NOW and like Unite Women, they always need volunteers. Whatever you feel comfortable doing would be deeply appreciated.

With the GOP working so hard to stop legal equality for women, we all need to pull together and make sure yhat not only we are protected but also the younger women coming up behind us .Our daughters and granddaughters will benefit as well as all of us. Feminist men are also needed in the effort to stop gender discrimination.

This is a reason we need the Equal Rights Amendment to be passed.