The Invitation by Oriah Mountain Dreamer

carrie.jdan@gmail.comEarth Wisdom0 Comments

It doesn’t interest me
what you do for a living.
I want to know
what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me
how old you are.
I want to know
if you will risk
looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me
what planets are
squaring your moon…
I want to know
if you have touched
the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened
by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.
I want to know
if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.
I want to know
if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you
to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations
of being human.
It doesn’t interest me
if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear
the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.
I want to know
if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,
It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me
who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me
where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know
what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.
I want to know
if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like
the company you keep
in the empty moments.

The Goddess Principle

carrie.jdan@gmail.comEarth Wisdom0 Comments

View New York Times article and slideshow on African art

I love mermaids. This has been on my inspiration board for a week.
I’m taking an African Politics class this semester and one aspect of politics/culture that we read about is the goddess principle. According to the goddess principle, women are central to the production of life. The notion that gods and goddesses exist gives women more legitimacy and power as opposed to the notion that only one God exists, which is a patriarchal idea whether we realize it or not – it has had connotations and innuendoes that we may not know are there because we grew up with that ideology. The goddess principle contributes to the flexibility of gender relations in society because the earth’s fertility is linked to a woman’s maternal powers. In the west, religion reproduces ideas of alienation as Christian fundamentalists and Muslim ideologies control women’s rights. Colonialism in Africa introduced patriarchal tendencies and imposed Christian and Muslim ideologies and undermined women’s rights by restricting their freedoms and forming gender roles specific to sexes. In pre-colonial Africa (and in many indigenous societies), the goddess principle prevails. As a result, women were very important in the economic system (they ran the marketplace), decision-making, and politics.
So this is a picture of Mami Wata, Mother Water, Mother of Fishes, goddess of oceans, rivers, and pools.
I could go on, but maybe you should just read Ifi Amadiume’s Male Husbands, Female Daughters and Malidoma Some’s The Healing Wisdom of Africa. Interesting stuff!