Getting Started: We Have Much to Do and Much to Learn
Women as a culture have been brainwashed into believing that in order to be “good,” we need to put everyone else’s needs before our own. Many of us have lived our lives fulfilling the demands of what we should be rather than the reality of what we are. There are so many women who walk around in deep resentment because they feel “forced to give service” to others out of obligation. No wonder so many women are exhausted. Mothers who work usually have two full-time jobs—one at the office and another that begins after arriving home—taking care of the family. Self-sacrifice kills the one who sacrifices.
women need to know—really know—that we are not second-class citizens. That is a myth perpetuated by certain segments of society, and it is nonsense! The soul has no inferiority; the soul doesn’t even have sexuality. We must learn to value our own lives and our own abilities as much as we have been taught to value others. It is time for us to release the anger and blame, the victimhood and the powerlessness. Today it is time for women to acknowledge and claim our own power. Now is the time for us to take our own thinking in hand and to begin to create the world of equality we say we want.
Advertising: Targeting Women’s Self-Esteem
Have you noticed how many women’s magazines run the latest diets and recipes for fattening desserts in the same issue? What kind of messages are they giving us? Fatten up, slim down, fatten up, slim down. No wonder so many women are into yo-yo dieting. There is no way we can live up to every advertisement and media message that comes along.
Next time you see an ad, look at it critically. What is the real message that advertisers are giving you? Are they trying to make you feel inferior or not good enough? Are they showing you an impossible dream to live up to? Beginning to laugh at the ads you see no longer gives them power over you. Exploitative ads are another way of controlling and dominating women. We want to do everything we can to take our power back.
Choosing Positive Thoughts and Beliefs
The smallest positive change in your thinking can begin to unravel the biggest problem. When you ask the right questions of Life, Life will answer.
There are many ways to make our changes. We could also begin to honestly look at our flaws—not by looking at what is wrong with us, but to see the barriers that we have put up that keep us from being all that we can be. And without self-bashing, we eliminate these barriers and make changes. Yes, many of those barriers are things we learned in childhood. They never were true for us. We merely accepted someone else’s belief system. If we learned these thoughts once, then we can now unlearn them. We acknowledge that we are willing to learn to love ourselves. And then we develop a few guidelines:
- Stop All Criticism. It is a useless act; it never accomplishes anything positive. Don’t criticize yourself; lift that burden from yourself. Don’t criticize others either, as the faults we usually find in others are merely projections of the things we don’t like in ourselves. Thinking negatively about another person is one of the greatest causes of limitation in our own life. Only we judge ourselves, not Life, not God, not the Universe.
- Don’t Scare Yourself. We all want to stop that. Too often we terrorize ourselves with our own thoughts. We can only think one thought at a time. Let’s learn to think in positive affirmations. In this way, our thinking will change our lives for the better. If you catch yourself scaring yourself again, immediately say: I release the need to scare myself. I am a divine, magnificent expression of life, and I am living fully from this moment on.
- Be Committed to the Relationship You Have with Yourself. We get so committed to other relationships, but we sort of toss ourselves away. We get around to ourselves only now and then. So, really care for who you are. Be committed to loving yourself. Take care of your heart and soul. I am my favorite person.
Creating Your Own Good Health
We hear so much about the dangers of breast cancer but little about women and the risks of heart disease, yet heart disease is a leading cause of death for women. In fact, heart disease kills more women every year than all forms of cancers combined. Women are also twice as likely to die of complications from coronary bypass surgery than are men.
Taking care of our hearts is very important for women. A diet high in sugar and processed foods and low in nutrients is not good for anyone. On the physical level, a processed-food diet, lack of exercise, and smoking all contribute to cardiovascular disease. These are things we can do something about. Our hearts never attack us; we attack our hearts.
On the emotional level, the heart, and the blood it pumps, represents love and joy and our early connections to family. Women with heart problems usually have unresolved family issues that take the joy and the love out of their lives. These issues might keep love and joy from entering their lives because they are afraid to let love in. Closing our heart to love is very symbolic of shutting off the flow of life to our heart.
The emotional cause for so many diseases keeps coming back to the issue of forgiveness. The spiritual lesson of forgiveness is a difficult one for all of us. Yet it is one that everyone has to learn if we want to have true healing. We each experience betrayal or loss or abuse of some form. Forgiving the experience and those involved is part of spiritual maturity. It is over and done and cannot be changed. Letting it go frees us from bondage to the past. It is the act of releasing the past that frees us to live in the now. We cannot be happy and healthy and prosperous and free as long as we are stuck in the past and we won’t forgive. Those are the biggest issues we have, all of us, and it’s our biggest spiritual lesson to forgive, to love ourselves, and to live in the now. This heals the heart.
Sexual Harassment and Speaking Out
women have such a tendency to let it go, don’t we? Who are we—just “girls,” after all—to say anything? Sure, maybe we imagined it. We often believe the denial by the man. Our space and honor have been called into question, and yet it’s our word that’s doubted. The old tapes in our psyche cause us to further disempower the woman. So much denial goes on. Women have been controlled by terror for eons. We have allowed this to happen for so many lifetimes out of fear, usually justified. In the past, it could have meant our lives if we’d spoken up. Even today, there are currently 15 countries where stoning is either practiced or authorized by law as an acceptable death penalty. Oftentimes, stoning is carried out as punishment for out-of-marriage sex and even homosexuality. In cases of extramarital sex, this often leads to stoning of the women, rarely the men.
When we are beaten into submission often enough, we lose all hope of ever making things different. Then we grow up into women who are still governed by the reactions of the little child inside of us. This can happen in the best of homes. We need to teach our children when they are very young—in elementary school and perhaps even younger—that they need to speak up when someone abuses them in some way. If we are to make this world a safe place for women everywhere, we must change our reactions, even when it seems to be very difficult.
When we keep silent, like the silence of the lambs, we are led to slaughter. We become too embarrassed to speak up. We remember the reactions we got when we did. They laughed at us; they thought it was a joke. They discounted us or made us feel as though we were troublemakers. So it becomes the rule that we don’t share and don’t tell. Keep peace; don’t make waves. This is how abuse is allowed to continue.
women must balance the scales of power. Violence and sexual abuse—they are the two areas in which women are most vulnerable. We must learn to treat all incidents with a no-nonsense attitude—to be very matter-of-fact, businesslike instead of vulnerable. We do not have to be “angry bitches” if we do not want to be; we can come from love and compassion and yet operate with iron-glove firmness.
Getting Older: Improving the Quality of Your Life
Instead of just getting old and giving up and dying, let’s learn to make a huge contribution to life. We have the time, we have the knowledge, and we have the wisdom to move out into the world with love and power. Society is facing many challenges at this time. There are many issues and problems of a global nature that require our attention. Let’s look and see where we can put our energies in order to help the planet. There must be a reason that we are living longer. What are we meant to do with this extra time? If we only play “games,” it gets boring after a while.
If you or a relative or a friend frequent a senior center, instead of talking about your dis-eases, talk about how you can band together and improve your corner of society. What can you do to make life better for everyone? No matter how small your contribution, it has meaning. If all elders contribute something, we can improve our country.
By activating ourselves in all segments of society, we will see our wisdom trickling down to all levels, thereby transforming our country into a place of loving kindness. So step forward, use your voice, get out in the world, and live! There is an opportunity for you to regain your power and create a legacy that you will be proud to pass on to your grandchildren and to their grandchildren.
Building a Financially Secure Future
Women need to understand that nothing comes into our lives until we have created it in consciousness, and therefore we have already earned it—earned it by right of consciousness. We put mental contributions (positive affirmations) into our cosmic bank. When we have deposited enough of them, they come back to us in the form of prosperity. Don’t feel guilty about bringing good into your life. You’ve already earned it! You don’t have to pay for it; you’ve already done your work. That’s why it’s here.
When your income starts to increase, when your work gets better, when the money starts pouring in, you’ve already earned it in consciousness. This new state is yours to enjoy. So a good affirmation to use would be: I’ve already earned this. I deserve it. I’ve already earned it. Then be thankful and grateful. As I said before, the Universe loves a grateful person.
Don’t waste time wondering why you may be more or less prosperous than other people. We all operate under the law of our own consciousness. Everyone has the ability to create good in their lives as soon as they open their consciousness to new ideas. Spiritual awakening is always here for us; it is up to us to be willing to accept it. Opportunity is always available; whether we accept it or not is up to us. When the student is ready, the teacher appears—not a moment before and not a moment later.