We live in a society that has taught us since a young age to compete with each other rather than to create a strong community around the feminine.
We, women, tend to lose the power of our union because we end up playing male games. We compete for their attention, and by doing so we accept to be inferior to them. Males tend to be more direct in their relationships and perhaps less personal (obviously I don't want to generalize here, this is neither absolute nor true for everyone) but men tend to build each other up.
On the contrary, women are convinced that they can be loved only if they reach an adequate level of beauty or sex appeal, and they strive to embody unhealthy and unrealistic standards of beauty. They constantly compare themselves to each other and are fearful of strong and empowered women, seeing them as a threat instead of an ally.
Open your eyes and see that every woman is a representation of the same divine archetype, and we all belong to each other because of this, women are priestesses of life, and for this reason life takes place in our bodies.
Only when we acknowledge our power we embody the strength of our mothers, grandmothers, great-grandmothers, and of all those women who before us have suffered and overcome all kinds of abuses in order to continue to protect and support generations of children and grandchildren through the madness and violence of our history that was written by men, our predecessors didn’t have a choice but still persisted, this testifies our incredible strength as a gender, we can endure more pain that we can even imagine.
Ancestral traumas are recorded in our body, and in our DNA, memories of all the pain that all the women before us had to undergo and the pain is immense and we have to do lot of work on ourselves to metabolize.
We women need to be surrounded by women to understand who we are, and to do the work we need to do to meet our true self. We are the medicine we need, we are by nature shamans and healers, for this reason life happens in our bodies. We need each other to rediscover this strength.
Instead this society has made us enemies, tearing us apart, so that they could control us, so we end up competing with each other instead of opening our hearts to one another, and by doing so we lose the opportunity to establish a real connection to our nature.
Many women prefer to support men rather than their own gender, believing that the same virility that has suppressed us for too many centuries will one day set us free, the world is full of women that srive to be like men.
In this society is instilled the idea that women are not trustworthy, because we are sensitive rather than rational because we are made by curves rather than straight lines.
In this consumer driven society the idea that you need to be productive prevails, following the old paradigm that is way too tight for the nature of women, we don’t navigate life the same way men do.
The world will find much more harmony when we start to realize this, and only by supporting, and empowering each other, by creating a safe environment to grow together, we’ll regain our power!
It is time to choose and cultivate womanhood more than anything else! Stop fearing the strong women around you, CELEBRATE them, you can grow and learn with them!
Quarantine is a very YIN time, perfect for tuning in with the feminine energy that is within every single one of us.
I also believe that we have all been incarnated as men and women in our past lives, and that within every humans exist both polarities, but to find harmony in this reality we need to give space to both gender to exist in their full expression. That’s why I believe that by empowering woman we will help not just women but the whole delicate harmony of life. A world were woman can be themselves is a much safer space for everbody to exist.
To start with I would like to introduce you to the 4 archetypes that a woman need to meet during their life, these archetype’s apply to a lifetime of experience in the bigger picture but also every month every woman embodies all these stages during her moon cycle.
If you choose to stop your period because you are using a birth control pills that is your choice, everybody is free to choose for themselves and I think we create the experience we need to grow, you could have chosen to stop your period because no one has never explained to you how powerful it is, you might have stopped your period because it is too painful to handle, consider that this new insight on your period could help you to metabolize the pain you experience under a new light. You might actually overcome it once you understand what is happening on a deeper level, you might have chosen to stop your period because your doctor suggested it, just for a moment consider the possibility that the whole pharmaceutical industry is a money making machine and it doesn’t want to set you free but rather keep you dependent on its products. You might have so many different reason on why you could have chosen to stop this beautiful experience of death and rebirth every month but acknowledge that on a deeper level you are still going through these cycles and that maybe your womb needs these phases to discover your inner medicine.
MAIDEN, MOTHER, QUEEN AND CRONE
I wish that when I was younger someone had shared with me an understanding of a woman’s life cycle. Something more profound than... "You must save for retirement;" something that honored the changes I would be going through rather than the social fear of growing old.
We are always changing and transforming ourselves. If we clung to what once was, we would be resisting the natural changes and rhythms of our being. Imagine if the trees hung on to their leaves and didn’t allow them to drop in the fall. The branches would not be bare in the winter, so the trees would send nutrients to the old leaves, still clinging, when it should be sending all of its energy to the inner tree, preparing for the spring. Imagine then in the spring when the new leaves tried to stir and could not come through because the old leaves were blocking their way. We have seasons of our lives just like the trees and it helps to understand how we move through them.
Each stage has particular tasks that are best when accomplished at that time. When the tasks of the previous stage are actualized then a solid foundation is laid for the accomplishments of the following stage. It’s like building a house. If the foundation of the house is not solid and well built than no matter how beautiful and well built the house, it rests on unstable support. Eventually the beautiful house will begin to show signs of stress and strain. Until one day they may have to jack the house up so they can get underneath to reinforce the foundation. If we have not properly completed the earlier tasks in our lives we too, at a later date, may have to "jack up" parts of ourselves to allow us to get underneath to deeper levels of earlier experiences and make "repairs."
Though each stage may be symbolized by a woman of a particular age and stage of life, their essences interweaving within us. They exist as archetypes. Think of an archetype as an aspect of the human experience that continuallyoccurs, a pattern of behavior that becomes represented or embodied by a symbolic personality. We embody aspects of the Maiden, Mother and Crone within us always, yet we can see where one archetype may more powerfully influence a particular stage of our life. But for the sake of understanding our progression through these stages, I will speak of them as symbols of distinct times of our lives.
The Maiden: (developing ego) She is a young woman, pure of heart, full of love and curiosity, experimenting with life, trying new things and having new experiences. She carries the seeds of all potential: anything is possible and all possibilities are within her. She does not limit herself by the needs or beliefs of others. She is in love with the mystery of life. She is whole unto herself and finds complete meaning within herself. Sometimes you may find the Maiden also referred to as the Virgin. This is not referring to a girl who has not yet had sex. This is speaking of the fact that she is whole without other. She is complete by herself.
The dark aspects of the Maiden: She can get lost in her own world, dangerously taking risks, becoming self destructive, holding a deaf ear to the inner voice of her own Wise Woman and to the wisdom of others. She may be the dutiful daughter, her self worth linked to pleasing others in order to receive their approval. She has not developed a strong sense of self and may "lose herself" when she enters the next stage.
The Maiden’s job: To come to know her own thoughts, ideas, values, and purpose, and to dream and generate vision for her life. It can be difficult when she doesn’t have the encouragement she needs to explore and believe in herself, especially when other peoples opinions of her take on more power than her own journey of self discovery. In this stage the Maiden must find herself and her voice.
The Mother: (actualizing ego) The mother births creation and devotes herself to "other": people and things outside of herself. Often the archetype of the mother makes you think of a woman giving birth to or devoting herself to a child, but here we are speaking of all of the possibilities of creation. This could be a work of art, acquiring knowledge, a profession: some process that allows the birthing of the creative energy within us. She is a selfless soul whose devotion and love are unconditional. It is here that a focus, a path of some kind must be chosen and her responsibility and commitment to it established. In her choosing lies the creative responsibility for her life. She is taking the visions of the Maiden and manifesting the dreams of her choice. The strong self she hopefully developed as a Maiden now learns to be humbled in service as she develops selflessness and unconditional giving, it will be a choice to act selflessly, not a duty.
The dark aspects of the Mother: We depend on the mother to nurture us and protect us and so she has the power to abuse and abandon us. She can control, criticize and reject the young maiden within us. If she does not have a strong maiden inside of her she may lose herself into the "other", and dissolve away, taking care of other while denying herself, becoming a martyr.
The Mother’s job: To actualize the dreams of the Maiden by allowing and
encouraging them to be manifested in the world. This is a stage where she learns to put someone or something before herself, her ego. If she has a healthy Maiden and Mother inside she won’t lose herself in this process and she can discover a deeper aspect of being. For some, a spiritual awareness is discovered as the ego is tempered and humbled by love, service and creation. She begins to find the wisdom of the Crone.
The Queen: (mastering ego)
The queen can be seen as the later phase of the mother archetype. She is a woman owning her own power and authority within herself and in the world. If she had children they are now older allowing her greater focus on her other creations. This is a woman negotiating her responsibility and power and reveling in all that she has mastered and accomplished. She has much to teach and remains actively engaged in society, either directly or through her teachings. She is renegotiating the all encompassing giving of the mother and creating clearer boundaries around herself, her time and her expenditure of energies. She reaps the benefits personally of all she has done and directs more of her power and attention to her own needs and creations. This can be a powerful personal, spiritual, and political stage of her life.
The dark aspects of the Queen: - The powerful queen can abuse her power and direct her knowledge and status for negative purposes, clinging to all she has achieved, becoming consumed with acquiring more and more power. She may respond to her sense of personal, familial or social responsibilities by withdrawing and withholding. If she did not experience a positive mother phase she may feel drained, resentful and misdirect her anger. She may not feel she has anything to offer this stage of life.
The Queens' job: To renegotiate her boundaries, realize and actualize her power and knowledge, and use her expertise for the good of all. This might be difficult for her if she lives in a patriarchal culture that devalues women and is threatened by her power.
The Crone: (surrendering ego) This is a very wise woman, no longer focused on others she has turned her reflections inward, as the Maiden did. She is not detached from the world; just not involved in the ways she was before. She seeks more solitude. Others seek her out for guidance and she welcomes them. She has a wide perspective, gained from years of experience. Been there! Done that! She can be completely honest because she has nothing to lose. She holds the wisdom, teaches and shares stories with those who will listen.
The dark aspects of the Crone: She can be bitter if she did not complete actualization of the previous stages of life, making it difficult for her to let go of her youth, dreams, people and living in the body. She may isolate herself and may blame others for her misfortunes. Her rage can be fiery. Her sadness and pain deep.
The Crone’s job: She is hopefully fulfilled by a life well lived, dreams and visions actualized. Her children, if any, are grown. Her responsibilities have moved into the arena of sharing the knowledge that she has acquired and she welcomes the invitation to share it. She returns the seed of vision back to the Maiden. Within her is a lively Maiden and a creative Mother. Our culture tends to devalue our elders, retiring them from work and often from the family and life in general. We lose so much of ourselves, within and without when we lose connection with the wisdom of the Crone.
We all have within us the good aspects as well as the dark aspects of these archetypes. If we find Maidens, Mothers, Queen’s and Crones who can serve as role models, we can learn from how they are negotiating the cycles of their lives. Life is a thread of single moments woven together, side by side, creating one continuos experience, each moment separate but connected to the whole.
A Woman’s Body is an Intricate System with Constantly Shifting Moods & Energy
She is storing emotional depth and wisdom in her body. She is a host for life and for death, a channel for birth and creative energy. And yet, so many women do not recognize the sacredness of their own blood. It’s gross to talk about, some say. “I love your writing, but when you get going on the period stuff, it’s really hard for me”, some say.
Think about it – if we’ve come to associate a natural, beautiful and sacred aspect of our very own being as dirty or something to hide, then what are we telling ourselves about our bodies; about our worthiness in the world as women?
Coming to understand and appreciate what our bodies do for us is liberating. In this article, we’re going to break down an average menstrual cycle week by week and provide natural, hormone free solutions to birth control.
When we mend our relationship with our cycles, we mend our relationship with ourselves and pave a healthier inner voice for our daughters and our sons about what it means to be a woman who bleeds.
It’s important for women to remember we are the life-givers. A woman who has entered her Winter or Wise Woman stage during and no longer bleeds is still carrying that creative energy within her but expresses it in a different way. A woman who’s battling the pain of infertility doesn’t have a cycle or has entered early menopause still holds the potency of women’s wisdom within her body.
If a woman pays attention to her cycle, she is further freeing herself from the chains of a patriarchal society that has abandoned the gentleness of feminine energy. She is reclaiming her right to unapologetically tend to the requests of her body from week to week.
When she understands her shifts in mood, wants and needs, she is more in control of her own life. She knows herself. Rather than feeling as though she’s being thrashed around by an unpredictable storm, she is self-aware and able to navigate the stormy waters with more confidence and grace.
One week she may want to socialize, the next she will need more space. A woman who isn’t communicating with her body will say things like “I feel like I’m going crazy”. An empowered woman’s journey involves learning to love her cycle rather than denying its power – and it does have power whether we choose to embrace this truth or not.
4 Archetypes and Seasons within Your Monthly Cycle, Explained Week by Week
The structural breakdown of the menstrual cycle week by week is based on the ancient women’s wisdom. I’m going to explain the seasons week by week from my own perspective with various creative additions I’ve made to my own cycle-tracking over the years. Keep in mind that as you get to know your own cycle, you’ll be able to create a chart unique to how your body ebbs and flows with the seasons each month.
Please don’t feel discouraged if your cycle is irregular or certain phases are longer than average. You can still use this information as a guide to building a strong relationship with your body. As you understand the energies and signs of each phase, you’ll be able to tune in and sense where you’re at even if it’s different each month.
Week 1: Inner Winter – Around day 1-6 of your menstrual cycle when you’re bleeding.
Week 2: Inner Spring – Around day 7-13 when you’re in the pre-ovulation phase.
Week 3: Inner Summer – Around day 14-21 during your ovulation phase.
Week 4: Inner Fall – Around day 22-29 during your luteal phase (winding down again).
Remember, even though this is a fairly accurate framework for a woman’s cycle, every woman is unique.
You may find yourself having a shorter or longer cycle, or embodying a certain season longer than the others throughout each month. This is why tracking and mapping your own cycle is so valuable!
Archetype: Wise Woman/Crone/Visionary
Bleeding Phase (Moontime)
Winter or the Wise Woman phase begins on Day 1 of your moon time. This is the first day you begin bleeding, and it’s week one of your cycle.
Winter is a time of inward reflection, a time of metaphorical death.
The bleeding phase of your cycle is the time where your energy and hormones are at an all time low. Most women when left to their own devices will take more rest on the first few days of their moon time.
Hibernation and rest are two qualities that accurately characterize what this phase is about for a woman, but there’s also a spiritual element woven in. According to ancient women’s wisdom, the winter phase, or wise woman/crone phase is a time when the veil between worlds becomes thinner. A woman on her moon is said to be more powerful and have deeper access to her own wisdom. In more ancient times, women would separate from the men during their bleeding time to gather in menstrual huts or tents to renew and tune in to the spirit world.
As a woman moves into her inner winter, she might find it irritating when family members, partners or friends are asking her to “do things” for them during this phase. Winter is not a time to give to others, but to ourselves. Learning to be self-loving during this time is the healthiest behavior we can adopt for ourselves and our families. I like taking baths, having movie nights at home with my partner, spending the days alone creating or writing/reading in bed, sleeping, and being in nature.
Ahhh spring phase! This also represents the Goddess or Maiden Archetype. Spring is the second week of your cycle.
Think rebirth, renew, fresh-start, cleansed, energized and happy. As a woman moves into her inner Spring phase, she’s ready to get back into the world slowly and take on new projects, start planning and organizing her month. Inner Spring is a re-emerging after a period of hibernation from the world. During this phase, the hormone estradiol (an estrogen) is rising and energy levels start making a come back. This is an optimal time to dedicate focused time to projects, reading and researching, learning, and performing physical tasks. You might find this is the best time to move, or to take on a challenge. I personally find myself wanting to spend more time alone working during this time so I can get into the zone.
Archetype: Mother, Healer
Summer phase is when things begin to heat up – literally and metaphorically. This is the third week of the menstrual cycle, where ovulation occurs.
A woman with a 29.5-day cycle may ovulate on the 14th day, though some will ovulate a bit earlier or later. I ovulate on day 17 for example, and my cycle varies from 29.5 to 33 days. During the summer phase or mother phase, a woman’s energy is more expressive and outward. She may feel more social, and this is a great time to focus on community building, nurturing relationships, hosting, cooking or being of service to others. Summer week is the most enjoyable time for taking care of children, offering friends support and having lots of delicious sex with your partner, with caution of course, because while pleasure is heightened at this time, so is your fertility. Oh, and by the way, some research suggests that ovulation is the best time to ask for what you want – whether that be from your partner, or asking for a raise at work.
Archetype: Wild Woman/Priestess/Enchantress
Fall is the fourth week of your cycle, and this is where things start winding down.
A woman might notice herself feeling more inward at this time. She may become agitated by excessive demands placed upon her, craving more spaciousness and time alone. As an entrepreneur, I schedule my life according to my cycle. I purposefully schedule days off leading up to my cycle, dedicating time to my self-care. I encourage the women I coach and mentor to do the same. If we disown our own needs, PMS may intensify and wreak havoc in our lives.
There are many practitioners of women’s health who propose that PMS is symptomatic of our times. While we can attempt to ignore our bodies needs, our body talk often gets louder as a result and manifests as extreme irritability and fatigue, among other symptoms.
Choosing consciously to acknowledge this inward phase is a courageous act of self-love. When a woman listens to her body during the Fall or Wild Woman/Priestess phase, she may be full to the brim with inspiration, and find herself more inclined to dedicate her waning energy towards pursuing creative ideas. This is a wonderful time to nurture one’s own creative insights, write poetry, draw, come up with strategic ideas for your business or career, and assert yourself.
EXPLORING THE MENSTRUAL RITUALS OF OUR ANCESTORS by Becca Piastrelli
We live in a time where our periods are generally seen as a nuisance, an impediment to being productive members of society.
It’s messy, it’s painful, and it would be a lot better if it went away completely. I know this isn’t necessarily the case for everybody, but it certainly was for me before I took a deeper look at the complete and utter magic it was to bleed every 28(ish) days—the same cycle as the moon in the sky.
“In the Hawaiian community before Christianity, menstruation was supposed to be the absolute most sacred time for women. And because it was already a matriarchal society where women generally were seen to have the most spiritual power, it was believed that when women were bleeding, they were so powerful that if men were around them, the menʻs mana or like soul energy would just get sucked out because they couldnʻt handle such sacred power.”
That got me researching and thinking about the ways my ancestors embraced menstruation—long before it was seen as unclean or dirty by modern day patriarchal society, long before we were socially conditioned to feel ashamed to bleed.
In Celtic Britain, to be stained with the red (presumably menstrual blood) meant you were chosen by the goddess. The Celtic word “ruadh” means both red and royal.
The eggs of Germanic Goddess Eostre (womb symbols that have evolved through to modern day Easter) were traditionally colored red and laid on graves to strengthen the dead for the afterlife. In Greece and southern Russia, graves were reddened with ochre clay for a closer resemblance to the Earth Mother’s womb from which the dead could be birthed again.
Celtic rites were often granted by elder women in the community due to the belief that being post-menopausal made you the wisest as you had permanently retained your “wisdom blood.”
Instead of our modern lens of seeing a woman as unclean during her moon time, I see now how revered and honored she was in this act of seclusion or sacred inward time.
As I’ve deepened my own reverence for my moon blood, I’ve been practicing giving it back to the earth each time it comes. There is an ancient Hopi prophecy that states, "When the women give their blood back to the earth, men will come home from war and earth shall find peace.”
When I first heard those words spoken in front of a fire from a woman with tears streaming down her face, my whole body shuddered. Could my menstrual blood be that powerful to our ancestors if they were to the Hopi people?
So I started giving my blood to my garden each month (diluted with water, blood is strong) and saw my lemon tree transform. Blood contains high nitrogen and protein composition, which is just what our plants need to grow strong.
Giving my blood to my garden is a little ritual that strengthens my connection to my moon cycle and helps me to re-program my shame into pride to be a woman who bleeds.