Friday, June 14, 2013

The Keepers of Four Secrets

There is an old proverb which states "Man is God's secret, power is men's secret, and love is women's secret." I've studied this extensively, meditated and pondered upon it, and have now changed the wording and made an addition so that this proverb reflects for me, the secrets of my life. Here is my wording:

"People are the Divine's secret, Power is Men's secret, Love is Women's secret, and Play is Children's secret."

We all heard and read that man is made in God's image. Of course God is male, the patriarch, a guy with the big white beard sitting on a throne up in the clouds. I sought that God, prayed to that God. I talked that God. I followed that God mainly through Sufism. It wasn't until I questioned and embraced the Sacred Feminine that my spirituality became whole and I truly found myself. I was also able to find the Sacred Child, the divine baby of light, born of the Sacred Masculine and the Sacred Feminine. My work with T'ai-Chi has given me so many examples of opposites in harmonious union and blending. The  yin-yang symbol is not of two, but of three: active, passive, and neutral. By embracing all aspects of the divine in my life I was able to embrace all aspects of myself. One concept that I got from my work with the Order of Bards,Ovates, and Druids is that we are in a relationship with the gods. We are not at their mercy nor are we bad children who always have to get punished or manipulated by them. Our lives and deeds and energy are just as important to them as they are to us. In a nutshell, they need us as much as we need them.

What does it mean to be a powerful man in 2013? Is power about conquering, dealing death, taking, dominating, subjugating all to your will? What is power used for? For eons men have been hunter-gatherers and the warriors who protected the tribe. They used their power to hunt and kill for food and to protect the weaker members of the tribe. Not a lot of that happens today in Minneapolis Minnesota. I haven't seen too many woolly mammoths on University Avenue! Power out of balance is what's filling battered women shelters and the news with man-on-woman violence. Men not knowing how, why, or when, to use their power. In the old days older men had to teach the younger men how to use their power but now I feel older men have to teach younger men how not to use their power. Women now are also physically powerful in sports, martial arts, business, and all aspects of American society. ( I know, I can see that glass ceiling...) They too will have to learn the double edged sword of power. Only power with understanding and balance is true power.

It takes a lot of power to love. To love unconditionally. To be swallowed up and drown in that ocean of bliss, and joy, and sometimes, pain. Having three children of my own I've experienced the depths of love.Love is so powerful. It causes the salmon to swim upstream against unbelievable odds, just to return to their spawning grounds to mate and continue the love. Love can overlook so many faults and heal so many wounds. Love can give the highest of pleasures and the deepest of pains.  The Tao of Love has taught me how to give and receive love. My lover is the teacher and example and the source of love. It is through their love ,understanding, and forgiveness, that women have been letting impatient,selfish ignorant,arrogant men into their lives as lovers. Is it better to love or be loved? Ask a woman!  Stealing a line from the Tao Te Ching, "the love that can be told is not the eternal love."

Play and imagination, daydreams and wonder, are our treasures in childhood. To be creative and happy as an adult we need to have these treasures be with us as we grow, as we mature. Play is so essential. When every thing is serious or becomes a life or death situation, even when it's not, stress levels in adults soar and what quickly follows on the heels of stress is disease and illness. Play can be very powerful and is not to be underestimated. Children who are abused or neglected play and make believe that everything is okay. Or they play that all the troubles with themselves and their families and their abusers are their own fault. Play and imagination can become reality. There is a line in the Tao Te Ching that says "can you become like a child?" If someone called you childish, or said you are acting like a child, or said don't play around, would you take this as an insult? And yet in the media everyone is striving to look younger,act younger, be younger, and failing miserably. One of the secrets that children know about play is how to be in the moment, and out of the moment, at the same time.