by ALisa Starkweather, co-producer of ‘Things We Don’t Talk About”
Monthly Archives: March 2013
By © 2011-2012 DeAnna L’am
The ‘Red Tent’ hit a nerve.
Published over a decade ago by Anita Diamant, “The Red Tent” became a best seller. Almost every woman who hears of my Red Tent events typically says: “Oh, I read the book years ago and I LOVED it!” or: “This is my favorite book!”
Why is the ‘Red tent’ such a phenomenon?
It seems that women around the world are touched to their core by this story of the biblical Hebrew tribe of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, told through the lens and voice of its women. At the center of these women’s experience is the “Red Tent”: a space set apart from the hustle and bustle of daily life, where women go to when they menstruate, or get ready to give birth. This is a place where women are allowed to Be rather than continually Do…
Any cycling woman knows the deep yearning for quietude during her Flow time. Every ounce of our body and soul calls for rest, while our culture calls us to keep going, no matter what. The ‘Red Tent,’ ‘Moon Hut,’ or ‘Moon Lodge,’ as they were known in indigenous cultures around the world, was a place of respite for women of old. Contemporary women deeply relate when they read of this. Much more of a fictional novel, “The Red Tent” by Anita Dimant evokes in women a cellular memory of an experience we all shared, for millenniums, around the globe. Once awakened, this memory becomes a need, a yearning, a birthright… We recognize that having a place to go to when we flow, monthly, will make our lives different in profound ways, as well as change the lives of those living close to us, and the world at large! When women have a sacred space to go to when they menstruate, they don’t need to be irritable with their spouse, children, co-workers, or the world. The irritability, which is only a signal from our body that we need to rest and replenish, is no longer needed. Instead, women can nap, dream, draw, journal, knit, bead, sing, paint, dance, sleep, stretch, read, curl up into a ball and shut the world out… Not being expected to tend to others’ needs, for a little window of time, monthly, will contribute to women’s inner peace, and to the harmony in their environment more than anything else I could think of! Yes, I know, women work full time, are single Moms, and would be unable to go to a Red Tent even if there was one in their neighborhood… True. But changing our consciousness around this is a first step, to be followed by little acts which go a long way. Instead of “all-or-nothing” why not start by acknowledging that your body, mind, and heart need to rest (whether you can do it this very moment or not). Acknowledging the need will lead to creative solutions (which can never come when we are not looking for them). It will also lead you to see the benefit of taking as little as 10 minutes in the morning; an hour when the baby naps; or half of your lunch break, in which to create sacred space for yourself. Light a candle, or just lay down and breath. Recognize that a Moon Cycle has passed since your last menstrual period. Exhale deeply, and let go of this cycle, its challenges, and anything in it that no longer serves you… Inhale deeply, and take-in the freshness of this moment, Now. Close your eyes and let your mind drift… Let yourself daydream. Yawn. Stretch. Listen to your body… If a thought surfaces to remind you of your chores or errands, smile and let it go. There will be plenty of time for it later. This moment is for You. This is your own, internal, Red Tent moment, which no one can take away from you (only you, by depriving yourself from it…) Once you start experiencing the well being brought by the consciousness, and practice, of taking some time for yourself at the onset of your Flow, you will never want to go back. Who knows, you may even come up with creative ways for having more and more every month… You deserve it!
DeAnna L’am, (B.A.) speaker, coach, and trainer, is author of Becoming Peers – Mentoring Girls Into Womanhood and A Diva’s guide to Getting Your Period. She is founder of Red Moon School of Empowerment for Women & Girls™. Her pioneering work has been transforming women’s & girls’ lives around the world, for over 20 years.
DeAnna helps women & girls love themselves unconditionally! She specializes in helping women make peace with their cycle, instructs Moms in the art of welcoming girls to empowered womanhood, and trains women to hold RED TENTS in their communities. Visit her at: www.deannalam.com
- For more information about Red Moon, please visit: http://www.deannalam.com/
- Click here for more information about Red tents In Every Neighborhood: https://www.facebook.com/RedTentsInEveryNeighborhood
- Click here for more information about ‘A Diva’s guide To Getting Your Period’ – http://www.deannalam.com/training-2/a-divas-guide/
By Hollie B.
I’m tired of the reasoning : it was done in Matriarchal times.
Well, You know what, it’s not matriarchal times anymore. Matriarchal means that Women are on top of the Heirarchy. I’m not interested in having anyone on top. Let’s try equal.
Let me say first, that I feel very strongly about Sacred Space for Women and acknowledge that there is a time and a Space for it. It is a must! Obviously, my Work almost exclusively involves Women’s Only Spaces. I can’t say whether Men need their own exclusive Sacred Space. I’m not a Man. I’m not going to speak for them. But if they want it, Yes, sure go and do it!
What I am talking about in this post is the need for shared Sacred Space as well.
For the past few years there has been major issues around the Australian Goddess Conference’s choice to include Men. I know right, where in the words ‘Australian Goddess Conference’ does it say ‘excludes men’? It doesn’t. The stories of Goddess in all cultures are not specific to Women. Goddesses are Cosmic Women with Universal stories. The lessons in any myth have as much to teach Men as they do Women. Myth is not relevant only to one lot of People. Myth is a story to inspire the Culture of the many.
But there has been a very loud contingent that have complained that Men don’t belong at the Australian Goddess Conference. And I disagree adamantly.
Sacred Spaces for Women exist all over Australia now. Red Tents have become more common. There are gatherings and get togethers and Circles of all kinds, specific to Women. These are Power-full Spaces for healing and shifting and Being our individual Self.
The Goddess Conference has the ability to reach out to the greater public. It is a first time drop for many People. So far, You could count on two hands the number of men who have attended. But I bet You couldn’t put an evaluation on how much those small number of men received from being in the womb of the Divine Feminine. For that is what we create at the Goddess Conference : a Temple of Sacredness dedicated to the Divine Feminine – who exists in every aspect of our lives, although not always acknowledged.
Men and Women need to share Sacred Space
Yes, many Women are holding wounds from the patriarchy. Yes, many Women are holding old wounds of abuse at the hands of men. And Yes, these wounds are in need of healing.
I’m not suggesting that that pain is not Real. I’m not suggesting that it doesn’t matter. But I will say this. It is time we got over and let go of our wounds, and brought wholeness into our Ways of Being. Stop blaming all men for your grief. Let go. Forgive. Move on.
And there’s another side to things that seems to be avoided in these discussions: Men are grieving too. Men have pain associated with the patriarchy. There are men who feel the loss of separation from the Divine Mother. Who have never been supported in a nurturing Space with the Divine Feminine, able to acknowledge the loss and grief we have all suffered.
There are men who have witnessed abuse. There are men who have stopped it. There are men who nurture their families and might need support around how to hold the Sacred Space of their own families. There are men who wish to sing and drum to the Goddess to fill their Soul. There are men who are ready.
It is not for anyone to say when the Men are ready to come. Trust that the Men who are ready will come. Trust that it happens for a reason and that when we heal together, we are All healed so much faster. The Work of families healing together is Power-full ten-fold to the individual. This ripples straight out to community. That’s Real Transformation.
About the author:
Hollie B. is a Witch, Indigo Mama and Awesome Wife. She is a facilitator of Women’s Space with a focus on Being, rather than Doing. Her Work is Being the True Self, in order to Create the Sacred everyday, in simple Ways, in every area of Life.
At Lunation, Hollie offers the Clan Mother Journey Experience, an e’course for connecting to your own Truth, as a Cosmic Woman. She also facilitates Red Tent Experience in Canberra, Australia, and offers a variety of other courses and products. Find out more about Hollie B. and her Work at lunation.com.au.