At this time of global crisis and imbalance women have a unique role. The feminine holds the mystery of creation. This simple and primordial truth is often overlooked, but at this time of global crisis we need to reawaken to the spiritual power and potential of the feminine. Without the feminine nothing new can be born, nothing new can come into existence-we will remain caught in the materialistic images of life that are polluting our planet and desecrating our souls. We need to return to the core of our being, to where the sacred comes into existence. And the mystical feminine holds the key to this work of redemption and transformation.
Feminists in general have come to rethink spirituality. Ten years ago if you talked about humility, people would say, I feel as a woman I’ve been humble enough, I don’t want to try to erase the ego—I’m trying to get an ego. But now, the achievements that women have made in all areas of life have brought home the reality that we are as corruptible as anybody else. That shared possibility of corruptibility makes us confront the realm of ego in a new way. We’ve gone past the period when the rhetoric of victimization within feminist thinking was so complete that the idea that women had agency, which could be asserted in destructive ways, could not be acknowledged. And some people still don’t want to hear it….In a culture of domination, preoccupation with victimage is inevitable.
There’s a strong streak of anti-essentialism in feminism, just as there is in Buddhism. It is the understanding that something like gender is not fixed or absolute, that not all women or men have some masculine or feminine essence that defines us. To put it in Buddhist terms, gender has no ‘self-nature.’
My memoir, cont’d - On sexy santas and getting old enough to feel paternal toward 18-22-year-olds
Let me start off, before the the hate begins, by saying that I describe myself as a male feminist, meaning that I’m all about female empowerment. I’m also a 33-year-old college professor at a small state school that is a self-described “party school.” I also elected to have a little end-of-the-semester get-together with some colleagues tonight, and right as we left the mellow corner pub we’d decided on, I was horrified to witness a large parade of undergraduate females dressed as Sexy Santas.
Horrified is a strong word. So are freaked out. Terrified. Horrendously disturbed.
Go ahead, call me a patriarchal bastard, you would not be the first. Call me the product of a level of abuse by two women caregivers that would set most men on the path to total relating-to-women meltdown, you would not be wrong.
But: seriously?!?! Sexy Santa? Allow me to describe some of these outfits for you. Knee-high boots, Santa hats (of course), strapless bustiers, and some of the most microscopic microskirts I have ever seen in my life.
Did I mention it was 30 degrees out tonight? Coats, apparently, would’ve broken the whole Santa-as-a-drag-queen-prostitute-chic.
And the worst part? All the undergraduate males were just wearing “ugly sweaters.” So… the males got to wear climately-appropriate gear that involved… a different top. And the women had to dress in such a completely fetishized manner that it would even make a Sexy Sailor blush?!!
I’ve been in some weeeird undergraduate cultures before. I was at a Big 10 school for my Ph.D. That was a weird culture. I once watched in horror as a bunch of undergraduate boys (hard for me to call them “men”) spit beer on a bunch of members of the school flag team wearing nothing but their underwear, right in the middle of campus, while everyone chanted GO STATE! in a disturbingly ritualistic fashion.
As I said to one of my colleagues tonight, however, there is something particularly unholy about taking a time-honored figure known to the masses as a jolly, overweight giver of gifts to children and turning “him” into a sex symbol.
I know what you’re thinking, though: they were dressed as Mrs. Claus. That’s even worse, when you think about it, though. The morbidly obese, ancient gift-giver is wed to a 20-year-old who dresses like a hoochie?!?!
I’m not a traditionalist. Far from it. And boy am I not trying to tell young women how to dress, but… Is it really worth freezing your little butts off to impress some dweeboids whose only sacrifice to this bizarre mating ritual is to wear a slightly out-of-fashion sweater?
And go ahead, tell me it’s not about the dweeboids. I certainly wasn’t the audience for this spectacle; I wasn’t even supposed to be there. Who was? Other women? In that case: did I miss something, or does the current cult of female-undergraduate-bonding require risking pneumonia just to demonstrate “sexiness”?
[READ MORE of my memoir This Boy’s Wife]