That’s Not How Feminism Works, Sweetheart

I know you feel men and women should at least be equal, right? You’re very vocal about this, but I’ve seen you use your feminine charms to crush a besotted male. I’ve seen you order men around because you know they want to get between your thighs and that you have agency of yourself so he’s fair for a game of deceit and would be a monster if he complained.

You’re also very vocal about how feminist and vegan and superior you are to the “baser” humans. Such as men, people who eat meat, and those who haven’t had the same privilege as you.

You say you’re feminist but you don’t represent my aunt, my mother, or me. You have suffered but the reason you are able to make such an outcry over your suffering is because my aunt, my mother, and me have fought for your right to scream your indignation and be heard.

The kind of behavior I describe above is a result of immaturity and not having the experience to see beyond your adolescent world of pure ideals. You haven’t done the hard part of living yet.

Let’s take an example (or two):

You can’t be vegan if you eat dairy, fauna, or marine flesh of any sort because that’s not how plant-based diets work. You don’t get to wear the flashing badge if you “cheat” with some ice cream once in a while.

You can’t claim to be a feminist if you use sex as a weapon because that’s not how equality works. You don’t get to wear the flashing badge if you use biology in that manner.

This is not what feminism is about.

Feminism is built on a respect for all people. You can’t claim superiority because you don’t harm animals but you do manipulate people with the intention of harming their emotional being. People are animals too.

Does masculinity need an overhaul? Fuck yeah. The Y chromosome is still dizzy from the abrupt changes in our culture. They haven’t had time to adjust to their demotion from “kings” to mere humans. But most of them are trying their best.

It would be helpful if you didn’t go around calling people names. It would be prudent not to willfully provoke an already outraged demographic with name calling and hypocrisy. It would be in your best interest to not obnoxiously present yourself as an easy target to those who want to discredit the feminist platform.

I do not suggest remaining silent because that isn’t an authentic state of being. I do encourage you to not give your power away to others. I do hope you believe in your self. I want to see women work together instead of competing for the most alpha male. But it isn’t just for women that feminists marched.

We also marched against the toxic masculinity that continues to destroy the fabric of our society. Complex human beings have been reduced to caricatures on both sides of the line drawn in the sand.

We marched to protect our children from war and overwork in the factories. We marched so that men were allowed to feel and express emotion without being labeled. Unless the label was human.

We’ve all been poisoned by American mores about gender roles and the idea that skin color determines your worth. America has had its pass that is granted to adolescents as they explore the world around them. It’s time for America to grow up and end the hypocrisy.

Authenticity is found in honesty to yourself and others. It is found in discovering that we are all one and to hurt one person is to hurt yourself. Eventually, this compassion will extend itself to all the creatures of this world.

And you, in your ignorance, have weaponized the very thing that subjugated all other women in ages past and yet advertise yourself as superior to others.

That’s not how this works. That’s not how this works at all.

(C) 2018. I.O. Kirkwood. All rights reserved for text. Image may be subject to copyright.

Why White Men Might Be Pissed Off

I’m just taking a stab in the dark here, but I think I might know why white men might be pissed off—at EVERYBODY, including other white men.

Imagine this scenario:

You are told that you are the root of all that is evil in the world—sexual objectification, racism, oppression, economic inequality, and every other –ism, –ion, and -ity you can imagine. When you can’t see it because you are also marginalized by a ruling class that happens to have the same colored skin and secondary sex characteristics as you, you are further subjected to the contempt of the people around you.

It doesn’t matter that you are kind to everyone you meet and give them respect regardless. It doesn’t matter that you’re willing to hear another’s point of view as long as they don’t objectify or oppress you. You’re a white man and you have the power to change these things.

angry white male

NOT. I’m not buying this crap that white men are the root of all evil anymore. I am a feminist and that means I want equality and respect for EVERYONE. I know which demographic is perpetuating the lie. I know that all of us are responsible for our own awareness. Just because I recognize that a few wealthy, white males are actively perpetuating this systematic oppression of EVERYONE ELSE, I’m not given the license to slander all men with white skin.

White men do not have the power to change these things unless they join the rest of us: black, brown, red, yellow, female and bleeding freaking rainbows. Blaming others for something they had no hand in dreaming divides them from us. It gives those who truly want to defeat us the power to do so.

See what this lovely white man has to say. He has identified the problem beautifully:

America’s White Male Problem

We are destroying our ties to each other with blame. Several white men I’ve spoken to have commented on how they feel marginalized and useless, and it stems from the idea that they are somehow empowered to change what is happening and should do so immediately. These white men are just as disenfranchised as the rest of us. This privilege is mostly myth, perpetuated only by the media and how we respond to it.

And just to show you what I’m talking about, about how all of us suffer because we are constantly blaming and judging each other by standards we didn’t even create, check out this article:

Defining A Modern Masculinity

I am raising two emotionally literate young men and what has surprised me is the anger they feel. Fortunately, I’ve given them permission to constructively express this anger at home. The outside world is brutal not just to people of color or women or homosexuals, but to just about EVERYBODY. There are very few people on the face of this spinning planet who have not been harmed by the damage we do to each other on a daily basis.

bikini rainbow

This is the article that started my rant:

The Actual Difference Between Women Who Are Hot And Who Are Beautiful

What man is going to read this rant and feel empowered to see the beauty of women? Does she have valid point about women’s beauty? Absolutely, but this article has painted men as the ugly creatures when its true intent is to empower women in their own beauty. Are there ugly creatures like the men this article has described? Absolutely, but they are few and far between, though most unfortunately vocal in their opinions. Since these kinds of men react out of a deep seated sense of fear of losing their man-card, the real key to avoiding such ugly creatures is to love yourself and know when to walk away.

This article’s anger is every bit as valid as the anger white men feel. This author has every right to express her rage at how things are and to demand change. I just wish she had done it in a way that empowered EVERYONE. That’s the true sign of being comfortable in your skin—of being beautiful. You take full responsibility for how you experience the world.

We are all beautiful, amazing human beings with different talents and capacities. I want to live in a world where we build each other up. I want to live in a world where we compassionately and constructively become the change we want to see.

What are your thoughts on -isms, -ions, an – ities? Hit me up in the comments below.

©2014 iokirkwood.com “Why White Men Might Be Pissed Off” All rights reserved.

savedpicture-33.jpgIn between bouts of writing for metaldescent.com, blogging, and banging her head, I.O. Kirkwood is the author of “Subatomic Revolt” in Mike Lynch’s No Revolution Is Too Big series and the short story “The White Carpet,” a finalist in the Scribes Valley Publishing Fiction Contest in 2013.

Show Me Your Hub, Baby

Things to be grateful for this week: I had a serious breakthrough in how I can be more aligned with the Center of the Tree of Life known in Qabala as Tifareth (aka the Christ Consciousness).

Tifareth is the Sun/Son, the Center, and is known as Beauty or Harmony. This sphere rests in the center of the Pillar of Equilibrium and operates much as the hub of a wheel. It keeps all the spokes together and allows the vehicle to move forward. All influences, whether the source is the All or a reflection of the All (from Earth/Malkuth), pass through this sphere. This is where we find the Holy Guardian Angel, the Savior, and the Vision of the Harmony of Things. Everyone has a personal Tifareth, a God-spark, within them and this is one of the greatest gifts from the All.

what you were born into

So how does this relate to my amazing week? I’ve been struggling. I’ve been trying to reconcile love and hate and the issues of race, gender, religion, and anything human-made that divides us from each other. Trying to have conversations with people about these topics is difficult (understatement) and very few people are ready to have this kind of conversation without getting upset.

I must explain that I’m a relentless sort of person and I lack a certain polish (it’s called tact). One person, offended by my relentless lack of tact, indicated that he could not believe I was bringing up the matter of skin color or gender as it was irrelevant. I wanted to know why? If I have to ask these questions about skin color or gender, I reasoned, a problem exists. I can’t pretend racism doesn’t exist. I can’t pretend that sexism doesn’t exist. I want to understand and I want to challenge the idea that merit is earned by an accident of birth.

Then I had the discussion with a new friend I met on Saturday. He said that color doesn’t matter either, but he acknowledged that there were problems. He spoke about “back in the day when co-workers and friends were just co-workers and friends – not Black, Hispanic, or White.” I remember that time too, but I also remember my grandfather using the “n” word and afterward, my father having to explain to me that I didn’t have a “black friend” but that I had a “friend who happened to be black.”

Some people don’t get that I’m exploring. They tell me to stop asking questions because it’s not going to do any good. Well, I have always been the person to say, “Hey, does anybody else see the big white elephant in the middle of the room?”

My new friend finally let me ask questions until I didn’t have any more questions to ask. He was patient, funny and outspoken. He could see the white elephant too. I felt much better, but the amazing thing is that he stripped color away. He stripped gender away. He made me see that no matter what the physical vehicle looks like on the outside, we are all suffering to some degree on the inside. We all have our challenges. Some of us more than others, but we choose how we overcome them.

baby knows what you teach it

My new outlook is not color based or gender based. When I see people now, I will seek that inner flame, the hub of the wheel, the God-spark, and I will give them the opportunity to show me how they have tended it. Because that’s what truly matters at the end of the day. How will you show the world your hub?

The Great Rite

I’m told that Victor Andersen said something like this:

Clouds are the result of the elements of air and water making love.

In truth the Laws of Polarity and Attraction are at play in the creation of all things. The Big Bang? Yeah, that was the orgasm to end all orgasms (or begin?).

Sex is the joining of two concrete, separate entities that results in the creation of a third and separate entity that is greater than the sum of its parts. Air plus water, bow-chica-bow-wow, and voila! Clouds. Quantum physics is slowly figuring out that manifest creation is just one big porno, tastefully directed by and starring the Lord and the Lady.

We are alive because of Sex. Sex is a sacred act. Sex is Creation. The Lady’s desire to know Herself created the Lord. Her pursuit of the Lord, lying with Him, created EVERYTHING

Keep in mind that the Lord and the Lady are metaphors for yin and yang – you don’t have to believe in gods or God to get this part of the program. 

Sex is sacred and beautiful. Sex is a sharing, a balancing, and a creation of diversity. A child is different from her parents. Clouds are different from air and water.

Dogma, (we all know who’s dogma is to blame here, right? Not that I’m trying to point fingers, but I sure didn’t lay that turd right there in the middle of the living room) has divorced us from our connection to the sensual world. We have been taught that Sex is Evil and shameful. How can something that gives humans such pleasure be anything less than a divine gift? How can an act that creates new life be viewed as anything less than a miracle?

Sex is an exchange. It is a sacrifice and a devotion. When approached this way, with worship, a magical person mindfully chooses partners who will acknowledge the gift. She will acknowledge the man’s sacrifice of energy as he brings her pleasure. He will acknowledge the woman’s sacrifice of her boundaries as she brings him pleasure. In this way, he cannot see the woman as merely flesh. She cannot see the man as less than divine. These ideas fall away in an atmosphere of sacrifice and devotion.

The same principle applies to same-sex partners, who may have more flexibility over who gets to play Yin or Yang. The approach is the same between consenting, adult partners, and I’m not assuming that only two are allowed to play at a time.

The Symbolic Great Rite, the sensual joining of Yin and Yang through ritual, and within and through the bodies of the participants (though actual sex isn’t being performed), is a magical person’s way of honoring the source of all creation. The positive, projecting energy of Chokmah (Yang) is blended with the negative, receptive energy of Binah (Yin). Force ensouls Form.

The Great Rite can be done literally too, but not everyone has a partner at the moment, so this is the happy compromise and can be done with good friends without getting too awkward.

Another way of looking at the Great Rite is through Alchemy. The tarot card Temperance represents the processes of Alchemy, the goal of which is to purify the alchemist and make her as “the world brand new.” The overall purpose of the Great Rite is to burn away impurities, dissolve boundaries, separate that which serves from that which serves not, conjoin that which is in apparent opposition, ferment the joined so that they blend completely, distill that further into its purest essence,  and coagulate the resultant shining body of the celebrant.

This process can, but doesn’t as a general rule, happen all at once. Just know that every ritual activity is aimed at raising the magical person’s consciousness. The process could also be viewed as what Tantra calls “awakening the serpent” of the Kundalini, a potent, sensual energy that “sleeps” at the base of the spine. When the Kundalini rises, the result is known as “Enlightenment.” How about that? Sex, when performed in an attitude of worship, enlightens. That’s nothing to be ashamed of.

A few resources for the genuine Seeker:

Dismore, Joseph D. “The 7 Steps of Alchemical Transformation.” http://ordosacerdotalvstempli.net/seven.html, accessed August 1, 2013.

Moonshadow, Lady Raven. “By Chalice and Blade: The GreatRite.” http://sacredmistsblog.com/by-chalice-and-blade-the-great-rite-part-1, accessed August 1, 2013.

“Nadis.” http://www.tantra-kundalini.com/nadis.htm, accessed August 1, 2013.