In a year filled with events and holidays, International Women’s Day is a day where Women around the world are not only encouraged; but cheered on for celebrating their unique strengths and achievements. LetClinical Sexologist Dr Martha Lee show you what it means to be able to understand one’s inner femininity.
If you are interested in anything spiritual, you may have noticed that since the turn of 2012, there is a lot of interest and dialogue around feminine raising. There seems to be a groundswell for a new way of living—one that is more heart-based, and less ego-centric I have been doing different forms of personal and spiritual work for more than 15 years—Reiki, crystals, meditation, journaling, etc.—and over the last five years especially, I have found myself drawn to learning and understanding everything there is to being woman, and by extension, femininity.
When I first trained and opened doors as Singapore’s only certified sexologist seven years ago, I was quickly typecast as the ‘sexy sexologist’. Determined to be viewed as a professional who happens to be female, I downplayed my gender and dumbed down. It took me a couple more years to possess the courage I now have to allow myself to shine, as both a powerful and radiant feminine woman.
I have learned that being powerful and feminine need not be a contradiction, but in fact, they are what makes the essence of what it means to be a woman.
Do not get me wrong:-
- Femininity has nothing to do with gender. In fact, all genders have masculine and feminine characteristics and qualities, i.e. you can have a masculine female, and a feminine male.
- In nature, we may be born more masculine or feminine, and while we can have natural inclinations, we can certainly cultivate (nurture) more of such essences consciously.
- Feminine is not a weakness or a waste of time. Like silk, femininity can be the softer side of a person or object, but there is strength in that softness too.
- Like any term, femininity is a way to help us understand life and better explain the different sides of a coin. It does not make femininity bad or evil.
- The true essence of feminine is not doing or nurturing, but in being.
- When I referred to feminine essence above, I do not mean that there is a right way to be feminine either. Whatever makes one feminine is what works for the individual—there is no right or wrong to be.
GROWING A FEMININE COMMUNITY
I chanced upon The Art of Feminine Presence (AFP) four years ago, and after a year of saving up money, I made my way to attend their teacher training. The 44 practices in AFP developed by Rachael Jayne Groover has changed my life. Upon returning to Singapore from the training, I began running weekly AFP classes and have done so for coming to two years.
AFP is a lot more than practices on finding and cultivating our feminine nature and essence. It is an opportunity to come together as women and have what we have long lost in modern-day society—true sisterhood. Through community, women can share their personal stories of strive and struggles, as well as hopes, desires and fears. As the facilitator, AFP has given to me what I did not know I needed and wanted to create—a tribe.
It is in your tribe that you can recognise how different we can be as individuals, yet similar in all wanting the same things. It is then that you begin to develop greater harmony, patience and compassion modelled in those you look up to.
It is when you feel safe within your community that you can share, cry, laugh, and find your way back to being yourself. It is when you have a strong and secure sense of family and roots can you grow roots, spread your wings and feel you have the strength and support to soar.
Indeed, it is so important to find your tribe, or create one. If you do not have one to call your own, I have one that you can join. For more about Art of Feminine Presence workshops, please visit www.eroscoaching.com/events