As we approach March 8th, and the celebration of International Women's Day, I thought I'd share what feminism means to me. What being a feminist entails...
My mother was a feminist. But, to her, it was a battle of becoming like men. To become equally treated, she and her peers were led to believe that they should wear their hair short, wear a blazer and be aggressive. This, to me, is like cutting off one's true femininity, that by all means could live on at home, but in my case, it felt like I had a role on the job and were then assumed to be the same kind of person after work, which I'm not. I didn't know how to be my true self on the job in the advertising industry, without becoming seen as a sexual object, which I became nonetheless.
To me, a feminist, is someone who embodies femininity, such as softness, beauty, grace, care and maternal leadership. It's to say yes to one's own exploration of mysteries; of all life's interconnectedness. And it's to be allowed to conduct oneself accordingly. This should be valued the same worth as men, but not because of being alike, but because we can contribute a side that otherwise would be lacking, to create balance and harmony.
An eco-feminist, is a person who draws a parallel between how women have been treated badly, and how we have treated Mother Earth just as badly, with the the same kind of abuse. Thus, we should heal and uphold the values of women, and Mother Earth equally. In doing so, it's thought that one helps the other. To add a spiritual view to this, is called embodying the Sacred Feminine.
All in all, it's a never ending dynamic between adapting to societal conditions and being autonomously authentic. The answer to how we can decrease inequality lies in the development of cultures, starting in our own groups and workplaces.
What is feminism to you?