Chapter Eight - Feminine and Masculine Principles
The pulse of the holy that allows us to mature as souls and not just age as bodies; understanding God as the balance of Feminine and Masculine Principles is a mandate for us to be aware of what we are being now.
To be clear, there are two things that I am NOT saying in this book. I am not saying that God is male, a man, or only masculine in nature. I speak to God as the Feminine Principle (relaxation phase), or that which allows us to release, which balances the Masculine Principle (action). I am not saying that the feminine side of God is the Goddess. I believe that there is a tendency to make a Goddess into a physical figure to be worshiped rather than a Feminine Principle. Then we end up with the same difficulties where people project that Jesus, or some other single holy figure did holy things in the past rather than seeing the principle within each of us as a mandate for our own growth now.
There is one Life Force. This one Life Force has two phases which work cooperatively while they are actually opposed to each other in their energetic polarity. Feminine energy is negative in polarity and passively allows things to expand (by removing the intention to constrict). Masculine energy is positive in polarity and actively makes things constrict. Think in terms of allowing muscles to release to have an open palm before one can constrict muscles to make a fist. Note that you cannot constrict muscles unless they are in the relaxation phase. This process is true at the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual levels of being. We allow things to happen (feminine). We make things happen (masculine).
In Chinese philosophy, the Tao is an undifferentiated whole (void). Out of this oneness emerges Yin & Yang which create, control, and transform each other. The principle keeps all things in balance. All begins with Yin. In order to contract, it is first necessary to expand. In order to strengthen, it is first necessary to weaken. In order to promote, it is first necessary to destroy. In order to grasp, it is first necessary to give (let go). In order to have power, it is first necessary to relax. In order to come in, you must go out.
Yin (feminine) and Yang (masculine) are equal and opposite forces that exist in dynamic equilibrium and are always present simultaneously. In traditional Chinese medicine, a disturbance of the proper balance of Yin and Yang causes disease, and the goal is to maintain or to restore this balance. It is at our own peril that we do not acknowledge this need for balance and cooperate with it.
Why is the viewpoint on expansion so important right now? Aging of the body is linear, while maturing of the soul is like a flower blossoming. It is a different mindset. To solve the great problems within our global community we need to look at bigger pictures. We have severe problems because humanity has produced and created without looking at what we were doing and being in the big picture. Pain, tension, stress, disease process, and destruction of Earth all indicate an excess of constriction over expansion – an imbalance. To solve any problem we must expand in consciousness. We cannot solve any problem with the same level of consciousness that is creating the problem or cooperating in continuing it.
Let’s look at our minds. We open to receive new information and that necessitates our changing the way we think. We may expand our thinking to include the new idea. We may need to let an idea go that does not fit with the new information. Often we need to let many ideas go to accept an expanded view because higher thought reverses cultural thought. For example, instead of waiting for others to show me that they are ready to function in a higher way around me, I may need to increase my functioning in a higher way around them. This means letting go of any judgments and fears I have about what will happen when I do so. Thought processes take place continuously more outside of awareness than within. Over the years we gain knowledge, and hopefully wisdom also, which allows us to use this knowledge for the good of humanity and Earth. We often don’t pay much attention to what goes through our minds until we reach a life crisis that forces us to be aware.
Let’s look at our emotional level. We have a thought which brings on a feeling which naturally expands and then contracts. Whether we use the feeling for information to guide our behavior, simply act on it, feed it to build it, or repress it, it will come and go. Once again, we may simply let this process take place without paying much attention to it until some crisis exaggerates emotions beyond what we can ignore.
Let’s look at the body. The heart beats. It expands (releases constriction) to fill the chambers with blood and then constricts to pump blood out to the body and then once again expands to fill the chambers with blood. This is a continuous process to which we usually pay little attention unless or until we suspect that there is some problem with this normal function.
The lungs function likewise. They expand (release constriction) to fill the lobes with air and then constrict to pump air out of the body and then once again expand refill the lobes with air. This, too, is a continuous process to which we usually pay little attention unless or until we suspect that there is some problem with this normal function.
Both of these functions are things that we can become aware of. I believe that we cannot even imagine how many similar processes take place throughout our bodies to continuously see that our bodies function healthfully.
Let’s look at stages of life. We enter a stage based on our age, expand to grow through it, and then let that die out to go on to the next. This, too, is an expanding (birthing) and a constricting (dying out) cycle. As we are called to expand, we need to let our constricting go. And while we are aware that we are getting older, perhaps we don’t pay much attention to the smaller changes that take place continuously as we age.
Let’s look at the world of things. We bring things into our life and we let things go from our life. This, too, is an expansion and contraction process. To decide just what we will bring in, we need to narrow our focus and choose. With our choice, we then have more things. Many of us put far too much focus on expanding when it comes to things and fail to clear out what we no longer need or even want. So we need to reverse this process to give focus to what we will release. Releasing as well as expanding is Feminine Principle, and focusing is Masculine Principle. The rule at the material level is that if we give something away, we no longer have it. This reverses at the spiritual level. We must give spiritual qualities to experience them, to have them.
Let’s look at our soul and spirit. We can use two different words for soul and spirit. We can consider the soul as feminine and the spirit as masculine, however they function as one, like the Yin & Yang Principle. Our spirit is connected with a greater Spirit or an energizing Life Force whether we are aware of it or not, whether we call it God or not. Our soul allows us to receive this life energy, and our spirit allows us to express this life energy. What we receive we give, and the more we give, the more we receive. The more peace we give, the more peace we experience. The more love we extend to others, the more love we experience within ourselves. As the heart beats and the lungs breathe, we pulse at the level of soul and spirit.
If we consider the source of the Life Force as Father God, then Mother God allows that Life Force to flow to us and through us. We pulse at the level of holiness within. There is no level of being where this pulsing is not vital. A restricted heart would be a dead heart. A restricted lung would be a dead lung. A restricted mind is a dead mind. A restricted spirit is a deadened spirit. A restricted life is a deadened life. We are meant to pulse and flow at every level.
The Life Force IS. The flow of this Life Force IS. It is at our own peril that we do not acknowledge this flow and cooperate with it. To cooperate with the Life Force is to become conscious, aware receivers. We all have to be feminine receptive to our own divinity. This means to accept the Mother/Feminine Principle and Father/Masculine Principle within our mind, to accept our role in the holiness of life, to allow ourselves to pulse with holiness. We are receivers and givers of holy energy and this energy, when not distorted by our own minds, is only and always helpful.
When it comes to Feminine and Masculine Principles, each energy force has its own specific function, its own behavioral pattern, its own special skills, and its own uniqueness. Feminine energy communicates how we function emotionally and spiritually, meaning our internal orientation toward self. Feminine energy encourages us to come from the spiritual to the physical, internal to external. The feminine trusts instincts and intuitive insights, so here we might follow inner guidance. Masculine energy communicates how we function mentally and physically, meaning our external orientation to life. It drives us to approach life from the physical to the spiritual, which means external to internal. In other words, here we might live by following rules we have been taught in culture or in our religion.
Typically, the Right hemisphere of the brain is considered to be feminine in function and the Left hemisphere of the brain is considered to be masculine in function. Pathways cross in our brain, so it is the opposite in terms of sides of the body (Left side Feminine and Right side Masculine). Traditionally, the Global East has been more Right brained and the Global West has been more Left brained. As we go global these two are uniting and balancing. It is rather fascinating to look back now and see that it was war that threw the Dalai Lama out of Tibet and this move brought the East to the West and fostered a spiritual balance on Earth.
The feminine is symbolized by the circle and community and the masculine is hierarchical - or linear - symbolized by a line. So we have internal/external, East/West, expansion/contraction, Right hemisphere/Left hemisphere, circular/linear, and community/hierarchy. Our goal is to bring these polarities to a healthy balance that we might create this healthy balance on Earth. Integrating these opposite polarities becomes a rich path of life experience, a vital and healthy part of the Divinity we call Self. Soul and Self refer to our genuine nature or our true being which emerges through our adaptation as we mature spiritually. This new organization of Self makes us more powerful than anything we have known in the past. Reclaiming our soul, our non-physical Self, demands an honesty that we are not used to. We must be able to endure the pain of such drastic change. Those around us may not be waking with us so we must have faith, love, and hope where there may seem to be little reason to hope.
Traditionally, even numbers are considered to be feminine and odd numbers are considered to be masculine. Traditionally, vowels are considered to be feminine as they flow freely with the breath and consonants are considered to be masculine as they disrupt the breath. Chants usually balance the two. They set up a resonance within us that “asks” for spiritual balance.
Also note that all foods fall on a continuum between expansive and contractive. See Food and Healing by Annemarie Colbin. Spicy and sweet flavors are expansive while bitter and salty flavors are contractive.
The feminine can follow the holy within and the masculine can act to bring our feminine, spiritual, or intuitive insights into words and thoughts so we can apply them in our external world to lead humanity. For example, brainstorming would be a feminine process – allowing ideas to come to us – while choosing one or more to carry out would be a masculine process. Allowing ourselves to do something new would be a feminine process, while what we actually do might be masculine process. The object is cooperation at all levels. Note that without allowing, there can be no healthy change and no healthy problem solving.
Feminine energy is more like peripheral vision. It expands our viewpoint allowing us to see the whole picture. Masculine energy calls our attention to what is directly in front of us. When we go to fear or anger, we narrow our focus. Loving (compassionate) thoughts are broad, inclusive, and expansive while fear (judgmental) thoughts are narrow, exclusive, and restrictive. Narrow thinking is required to handle an immediate danger, it allows us to disregard all that is not necessary to hold in focus. Expanded thinking is required for personal and spiritual growth and to give the kind of creative responses that will solve problems.
Feminine energy sees life as a cooperative effort that promotes collaboration and encourages partnerships. Masculine energy is controlling and competitive. The consequences of imbalance are seen in habits of competition where material growth at any cost is destroying the planet and leaving many human beings devastated. Feminine energy is the inner voice in the back of our mind. It tells us when we must change parts of our life that are setting us up for physical harm, emotional hurt, and spiritual deprivation. While feminine energy will cherish, nourish, and preserve, it can also break down the old to allow for the new, as in opening the womb to allow the new to birth. Masculine energy is reluctant to change.
Masculine thinking is more analytical in nature and relies on logic. It depends explicitly on the five senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell) for information processing. It takes all incoming information and processes it sequentially, then makes decisions based on facts and historical precedent rather than insights or emotions. Masculine thinking is detail oriented and is aggressive when it needs to be. It is independent and views life as a competitive event. It measures success based on results, not on effort.
We all first adapt in life. In adapting, we learn what to do. Feminine energy is focused on being. Masculine energy is focused on doing. In maturing, we learn how to be. When these come to balance, we are aware of what we are being while we are doing. Eckhart Tolle in A New Earth calls this awakened doing. Soul is our sense of being. Being is a function of the heart. The goal is to be aware of what we are being no matter what we are doing and therein bring our soul identity into all that we do.
Union with God is union at a deep sense of being, which is the balance of Feminine and Masculine Principles within. Consciousness is expanding to be holistic. Everything spiritual is paradoxical. As we unite within, we become more uniquely ourselves, or differentiate from others. At the same time, we become more and more interconnected as we enter freely into the whole.
Feminine thinking is qualitative. Masculine thinking is quantitative. When natural disasters take place, the feminine will focus on stories of how lives are changed by the event, and how humans blossom to respond in helpful ways, qualitative thinking. To give focus to quality, we need to honor and accept the value of non-quantifiable achievements. When natural disasters take place, we hear what the estimated cost of the event is in dollars, quantitative thinking.
When I worked as a nurse, I knew how many baths I gave, how many bedpans I emptied, how many medications I gave, how many bandages I changed, etc. When I moved into my spiritual phase of life and started counseling, I was very aware that I had no such measure. Clients came before me, usually disturbed, and left relieved. That was all I knew. I had no idea how their lives would be different from then on. When I started teaching, classrooms of people came before me, and I did the best job I could of delivering information and leading growth processes. Unless given feedback later on, I had no way of knowing how their lives would be different from then on. As an author, I have no idea how anyone’s life may be different from reading my words. I only hope that by ensouling my words that lives will be changed in meaningful ways. As a human being, I hold faith that my energy feeds into a universal pool and that in being the best possible person that I can be, I assist in pulling humanity up to its higher function. I have no measurable results for my dedication, only joy when I see any higher function anywhere on earth.
Feminine structures are circular, cooperative, community oriented, networking in form. Look at the power of the internet to bring a sense of equality and cooperation to the global community. The reintegration of the feminine is a powerful force beyond imagination. While Masculine structures are patriarchal and hierarchical, the Masculine Principle of sorting out in balance with this Feminine expansion is essential in our proper use of all the new capabilities we have in using the internet.
Our goal is to balance Feminine and Masculine Principles. For approximately 5,000 years, civilizations have embraced masculine energy as the dominant energy. During these times, societal beliefs have virtually repressed Feminine energy by disregarding its contribution. Those who flowed with feminine energy throughout these millennia (poets, artists, musicians, as well as women themselves) have always struggled, trying to fit into a world that placed no real value on the qualities of nurturing, care giving, intuition, or being emotional. For all this time, most believed that the only place for these qualities was in the home – never in the world of business or politics. These old perceptions and attitudes have begun to change. Emerging values and beliefs no longer accept repression of women. Earth itself, is coming into consciousness as one grand feminine being, Gaia.
A word of caution. It is so easy to mistake feminine or female for Feminine Principle. When Hillary Clinton was running against Barrack Obama for president, obviously, Hillary was the woman or the female. However, Barrack functioned more on Feminine Principle. With a black father and white mother, black and white blended within him making him equally receptive to either race. With a father who was Muslim and a mother who was Christian, Muslim and Christian blended within him making him equally receptive to either religion. Having lived on opposite sides of the world as a child, and having relatives on most continents, he was more receptive to different cultures. He had a more inclusive attitude and was community oriented. While calls went out for a woman to be president, Feminine Principle reigned, most likely at some unconscious level.
In conclusion, the Caduceus is an ancient holy symbol with two serpents wrapped around a scepter or Tree of Life. It is the symbol for the medical profession. Feminine and Masculine forces are not the same as female and male gender. These forces of expansion and contraction are determining factors in all that takes place in our spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical layers regardless of gender. We are literally giving birth to ourselves as new human beings. Receptivity is essential to birthing the new. We need to realize that we are being born, not dying, though we may feel like we are dying as the old dies out. The goal is to be aware of what we are being no matter what we are doing. It is at our own peril that we do not acknowledge this need for balance of the Feminine and Masculine Principles and cooperate with the pulse of life at every level of our being. To do so is to generate from within a resounding “Yes!” to life renewed. What needs to birth in you? We are living at such a time of opportunity as human beings. Do you feel the possibility and the joy that accompanies this?