A locus for eccentrics (hopefully)

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Mother's Day

A very positive, optimistic, and constructive feminine energy is washing over me this Mother’s Day, and I want to use this post to celebrate that force, give thanks to the parties responsible, and share it with whom ever may be reading.

This energy is most palpable in the actions, the behavior, the radiance and vibrations radiating from my wife. Everyday, as I watch her get closer to the birth of our first child, I am beginning to notice, not only the wonder and pleasure being a mother must be, but I am also beginning to recognize the power and significance of what it means to be a mother. And everyday as we walk the malls and see the hundreds of mothers and mothers to be, I feel like an overflowing cup filled with respect for what these women, have been through and what they will still do.

I think my awareness became most acute last week, as my wife and I sat through a seven-hour birthing class. I am a bit embarrassed to confess my ignorance here about the entire birthing process, but I think this confession maybe valuable, to readers, to empathize what a really immense act birth really is. I think too often we, as men, assume that since it is such a common occurrence that it is straightforward, simple and easy, and so we fail to give it the esteem and admiration it deserves. After years of watching Hollywood trips to the hospital, I assumed that birth was a three to four hour process that involved indescribable pain, as the baby made its way out of the birth canal, but that it was a relatively short process. You are in pain. You push, “Like shitting a watermelon they say” and it’s over. Sure that sounds painful and horrifying, but after the baby pops out it the pain is over. I didn’t realize how far before the actual delivery the pain began. You thought a few hours and that’s it? That is not the case! The average labor probably takes anywhere from ten to fifteen hours. As the labor contractions begin, the mother feels, as the birthing teacher said, “The most excruciating cramps you can imagine.” Each contraction occurs every three to four minutes, lasting about a minute each, for ten hours. There is not a single man I know, myself included, who has the maturity, the will power, the dedication to go through this process. So, next time you are walking down the street and you see a women with a child just imagine the unbelievable experience she has been through. I for one have a whole new respect for what we pathetically call the “weaker sex.”

Which brings me to my hypotheses: The world is so messed up because men have ignorantly taken the reins. And because masculinity is emotionally weak, insecure, afraid and jealous of the feminine strength, we rely on violence, machismo and juvenile, immature exhibitions of physical strength to try and prove that we are somehow more powerful. When in reality, I am beginning to see that most wars, most conflicts, and religions are rooted in the inability of men to respect and acknowledge that women are far superior to men. Period! At some point we men realize that women do not really need us. Sure we are vital to creating a life, but after that we could disappear and the mother would have no problem, at least biologically, raising the child. But give a man a newborn and ask him to raise the child alone in nature, and it is a nearly impossible feat. I think this realization, coupled with the fact that we cannot truly understand the nuisance of pregnancy and birth, results in men turning to violence to try and compensate for our insecurities and feelings of inadequacies.

The dogma of most major religions only emphasizes my point. The fact that the bible tells us that God is punishing all women for Eve’s need to educate herself would be comical, if it wasn’t so sad. Before there was one paternal God there was Gaia, the Mother of all creation. I say that we need to return to the celebration of the power of the feminine, and return to the worship of our mothers. It is in the womb of Mother Earth herself, and her ability to birth and nurture, where we will find our salvation.

It is in this midst of this fostering feminine force that I find myself these days. After seeing my wife getting ready for this tremendous feat, I have been looking back and reassessing all the mothers and women I have known, starting with my own. I now realize that she too was in a hospital for ten hours, sweating, crying, pushing and loving me as I made my way into this world. I realize that not a day has gone by since, that she hasn’t thought about me, not a day that she hasn’t loved me more than anything else in her life. I have been thinking about my grandmother and how she birthed and raised six children, one after the other, in a time and country where I can assure that the feminine was not being worshipped. (Since the arrival of Moses, Christ, or Mohammad there are fewer and fewer places where one can worship the goddess.) I have been thinking about my grandmother’s strength, as well as the strength of all the mothers I know.

So in closing, I want to say thank you to every mother out there who may be reading this. Thank you for your love, your dedication, your sacrifice, the pain you have endured- not because you are being punished by a vengeful masculine God, but because it is through this pain where we form the bonds that result in love. Thank you for the love you have given, your ability to put up with your husbands, your sons, your brothers, all the while knowing that you are our salvation. I see mothers all over the world, tired, mistreated, lonely, and under appreciated, and I say thank you!

On this Mother’s day, I want to say thank you and I love you, not only to my wonderfully brave and loving wife, but also to my mother, my grandmother, my aunts, my mother-in-law, Twinkle, Cort, Teresa, Lacy, too all women, and of course to Gaia, whose name is the root of the little mother growing in the womb that is partly made up of me…

I will sing of
well-founded Gaia,
Mother of All,
eldest of all beings,
she feeds all creatures
that are in the world,
all that go upon the goodly land
and all that are in the paths of the sea,
and all that fly:
all these are fed of her store.

--Homeric Hymn, 7th Century B.C.

Please feel free to share this with as many mother's as you can!
Don’t worry dad’s I will have an equally supportive post on father’s day!


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