It's coming around again, as such cycles always do. For a number of years I have been talking (amongst other people) about the new consciousness emerging -- or rather unfolding -- over these years. However, the focus so far has been largely upon the consequences of this new "energy consciousness," rather than on the qualities of the incoming energy itself. For example, I have discussed how this unfolding energy is shifting human social systems -- how we do things -- from a vertical to a horizontal pattern. That is from hierarchical structures to networks and connectivity. Recently though I have been turning my focus upon the shift from the older values of competition, conflict, control and censorship, to the new values of connection, communication, consciousness and compassion. So what does this tell us about the new energy unfolding upon the Earth and permeating through humankind?
It tells us that the new energy is relational, not mechanical nor isolated. That is, it does not thrive upon self-sufficiency but upon contact and receptivity through others. It flows and works through organic, non-hierarchical systems, through networks and webs, through the threads that weave the wholeness of life together. This energy no longer thrives through top-down power structures. It no longer seeks one-to-one encounters -- it flows like life itself.
Realizing this reminds me of how during the 16th to 18th centuries, Europe witnessed the witch hunts that put to death tens of thousands of women accused of being witches. (1) The executioners were predominantly men who represented the church hierarchy. This was a masculine energy that for millennia had been parading and swinging its heavy paternal axe of hierarchical power. And the witches were yet another manifestation of female power that the ecclesiastical authorities could not tolerate. Many of these so-called "witches" were women who knew about herbs -- how to heal and nurture people, and how to listen to nature. (Others were purely innocent victims of gossip!) Yet one of the things they were accused of, amongst many, was of gathering and conspiring together. How did they gather? They gathered in witches' circles. Here we have the energy of hierarchical power against the energy of circular, relational flow. It was the fear of a "magical presence" within the female that fueled a deep repression over the centuries that has become a pattern -- the denial of the subtle, the integral, the nurturing.
Our modern educational systems and institutions have also been in great denial of this integral energy and thus geared for the masculine mind. Our school curriculum were initially created by men so that young minds could be shaped to think in masculine ways. In other words, conditioned to manifest a masculine energy and consciousness. (2) The feminine relational understanding was pushed aside to be replaced with the linear thinking patterns of the masculine mind. (3) For some, it was like trying to fit square shapes through a round hole -- or through a circle where water should flow. Yet the insistence upon the masculine mind has intimidated the feminine consciousness. It has pushed it into retreat, undermining the true expression of this much needed energy. The over-bearing masculine mind has insisted that women mimic its attributes, play its games and thus suppress its own presence.
The masculine consciousness is also behind the image of a divinity that belongs to the heavens. From "up there," the dominance of a masculine god has made it permissible to develop a science that would "torture nature's secrets from her" and thus take control over our environment. In this way, humanity has succeeded in largely divorcing itself from the sacred interdependence of creation. Our current commercialized material "modern" cultures reflect this sense of alienation and individualism represented by the separateness of a masculine god. Humanity no longer understands (or remembers?) that it is an essential integral part of the great wholeness of life. As a species and as a civilization we have arrived at the point where this dominant masculine consciousness can proceed no further alone if we are to have a viable long-term future upon this planet. It is at this critical stage that there are signs that the energy is now turning, or rather, it is shifting as new permutations are emerging in the world. It is the feminine energy that seeks the flow, the networks, the connectivity... and it is coming around again.
Traditionally feminine consciousness has honored all life as sacred. As such it manifests a reciprocity that reflects the inter-connectedness of life. Relationships with others become more important than the isolation of the self. The value of the community stands above the pursuit of individual achievement. The process of being takes precedence over the need to achieve through doing. And multitasking is more appropriate than being fixated upon a single end goal. Now which aspects sound more suitable for a globally interconnected world that communicates through multiple networks simultaneously? So let us ask: which energy and consciousness may be more aligned with the way the world is restructuring and recalibrating itself? Answers on a postcard please...
Welcome to the 21st century, where global communications have opened up the world to the masses. The Internet, let us be honest, represents aspects of the feminine energy and consciousness. The Internet connects people into multiple relations. It is responsible for nurturing rising empathy across the world and sharing stories, needs and reaching out to many people and communities. Sure, it has its negative aspects, too. That is the nature of a world of duality. Focusing on the constructive changes we see how individuals, communities, businesses, systems, etc, are recalibrating across the world to be aligned with the new interconnectivity that symbolizes the world we are moving into. The current manifestation of feminine energy needs new pathways in order to enter and permeate our material world. Our physical structures are responding to this call by shifting from top-down structures to distributed and decentralized networks. Yet we also need to assist this recalibration by changing the ways we think. Altering the ways we do things will not gain permanence until human consciousness changes. In order to allow the new incoming consciousness to flow into the world, we need to allow it to flow through us. That is, to manifest the qualities, attitudes and our presence in the world that will most effectively receive, hold and transmit this consciousness. This responsibility is our living work now.
The days of working in seclusion are over. The new energy does not support monasticism. The flow must connect between inner and outer events and states. The new living work is not a monastic endeavor, but must exist within the active folds, avenues and marketplace of life. High castles, priestly enclaves, guru sanctuaries, etc., are edifices of the past where a different energy was contained. The new energy -- which shows aspects of the feminine consciousness -- is a nurturing one that comes alive through people. Whereas the previous masculine-orientated energy wished to stand visible and powerful, like the tower on the hill, the feminine energy is more subtle. It flows through the appreciative touch, the supportive word and the reassuring glance that filters through each one of us as we wend our way through life. That which was once hidden can now be made manifest through us -- this is the living work.
"Love has no power structures or hierarchies; it is not for sale. It passes freely from heart to heart along the web of oneness that connects us all." -- Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
1. Thurston, Robert (2006) The Witch Hunts: A History of the Witch Persecutions in Europe and North America. New York: Longman.
2. McNeil, John D., (1990). Curriculum: A Comprehensive Introduction (4th ed.), New York: HarperCollins.
3. Jaynes, Julian (1982) Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind. New York: Houghton Miffin, and McGilchrist, Iain (2009) The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World. Yale University Press.
4. Vickers, Brian (ed) (2008) Francis Bacon: The Major Works (Oxford World's Classics). Oxford: OUP.