Looking at the role of mother through this lens allows me to see 'mother' as a way of being. Embodying the way of 'mother' means to see the people around us as our sons and daughters. Not to be treated in a patronising way, but to be gazed upon with compassion and with a will to understand. To see conflict, put out a gentle hand and say "what's happening here? How can we resolve this?"
Science says that females who birth babies or adopt babies are called 'mothers'. I'm sure, however, there are men and women who would say that the lady who gave birth to them is not what they would call a 'mother'. That's because despite the biological label, we know that mothers are much more than females who have babies. We know that to mother someone means to show love and concern for their wellbeing. Furthermore, I'm sure there are many who would say they know men who embody the way of mother. Gentle yet firm men, who carry compassion and seek to connect.
This concept has come to me by reading 'Urgent Message from Mother, Gather the Women, Save the World' by Jean Shinoda Bolen. I suppose it's the sort of title that some men might roll their eyes at. And perhaps some women too. To explain further, it isn't a book saying that a woman or women in general will save the world. It is a book saying that the act of women gathering will save the world. Because by gathering, supporting and nurturing each other, women are able to find balance, heal hurts, realise truths, gain strength, drop victim stories and return to their lives ready to stand strong, love fiercely and live in the power of servant leadership. Because in my opinion, true leaders are the ones whose actions are rooted in desire to serve. And true leaders make a huge impact through the influence of their example.
That's where mothers will find the challenge. Because in many families, Dads are already positioned as strong individuals who have goals, dreams and mountains to conquer. Mums are, from my perspective, positioned as support for children and partners. There isn't much to be seen of her as an individual with aspirations, passions and dreams. The answer to this is not to ask our men to be less but instead encourage our mums to strive for more. To break traditions, to go against convention, to dare ask for something for herself. Of course she will always be her partners and her children's greatest cheerleader. In order to embody the way of 'mother' completely, however, she must see that the disposition of genuine love and concern extends to all - INCLUDING HERSELF. Everyone is need of mother, including mother.
She will find mother within and she will find mother in others, as she gathers with the women of her community. Because it's time, it's truely time to accept our responsibilty as leaders of our children by our lived example. We must be the woman we want our daughters to aspire to be. This book has come to me and I hear the urgent message from mother - "I will gather the women, save the world'.
Will you join me?
Bron (women gatherer)
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