Shifting Guidance from Head to Heart
In alignment with the Soul of WoMen and the Fuji Declaration, I am honored to share a poem from my book, on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
Now more than ever, I believe an inner transformation is needed to make peace in and with our world. To re-establish the complementary dance of the moon and sun that reflect nature’s guidance for how to be human. To mirror the fractal instructions of that ancient axiom “as above, so below.” Now is the time to find right relationship between those ‘gendered’ aspects of ourselves, to integrate rather than polarize, to reclaim our human wholeness.
I believe we are all called to be leaders and innovators now, in every area of life and sector of society. This is the time for our entire human family to awaken and embrace the healing that’s needed, within and among ourselves, and between us all and the natural world. Together, we may effectively shift our course and envision, invoke and co-create a new world – a world that is just, regenerative, healthy and peaceful. I hope you’ll join me.
Shifting Guidance from Head to Heart
All the brilliant, innovative and effective solutions and strategies
won’t be enough to shift our collective course
without an accompanying — and radical — change of heart.
For me, what’s central to alleviating humanity’s strife
and addressing the devastation we are wreaking upon our mother Earth
is tending to an imbalance of the masculine and feminine.
Reclaiming the value of the feminine within each of us
is essential to bringing our human wholeness
to this time of revolutionary reinvention.
We have to practice loving, re-awakening and strengthening
the feeling parts of ourselves:
our intuition, our body wisdom,
our dreams and our deep listening.
As we re-enliven the inner knowing of our hearts
(understanding that relationships are far more important than
accomplishments, goals or tasks),
we’ll become better partners to ourselves,
each other and the Earth.
If we practice our capacity to be comfortable
with vulnerability, with uncertainty,
and with attending caringly to the cues and clues that surround us,
it will help us to re-synchronize with the world
and become more resilient, flexible and adaptive to change.
This is not about devaluing the masculine side of ourselves;
it’s about re-evaluating what a healthy masculine means.
It’s about reclaiming the whole of our dimensional humanity.
For me, I find I must begin with my inner self,
since what I see out there likely reflects what’s within me.
If I don’t, it’s far too easy (and not ultimately effective)
to blame others without cleaning, updating
and reorienting my own operating system, first.
I am practicing re-sequencing my inner voices
so that my heart’s instruction can lead,
and be supported by the plans, analysis,
structures and strategies my mind creates.
When I listen with my heart,
I am pierced with an empathic awareness
that calls me into action beyond what any amount
of learning, reading or mental understanding can prompt.
I am stunned by the power of women, and our capacity to heal.
Wise elders, friends and mutual mentors
among the women I am honored to work with
remind me to listen deeply to all my sources of guidance —
to seek assistance from nature,
from my dreams and intuition, to inquire of my ancestors,
and listen for responses, before determining a course of action.
This requires me to peel away layers of patterning,
of rushing to respond to prove my value through productivity.
It requires me to question old and deeply ingrained habits.
As I practice composting layers of acculturated learning
that I absorbed unknowingly through the invisible water of culture we swim in,
I wonder whether I will ever be free of it.
I realize I need to decolonize my mind,
and practice reclaiming and remembering other ways of knowing.
Along the way, I’ve discovered something about the feminine.
I’m learning that listening is not a passive act.
Life is teaching me that it doesn’t just require my ears.
I’m learning to listen with my belly, my dreams and my intuition.
Not only does it require actively attending to receiving guidance,
I’ve discovered I also have to ask, in order to receive,
and then wait — patiently if possible — for a response to come.
As I practice this —
with my inner self, with nature, with my body,
with ancestors, and dreamtime and intuition —
I find I have many more sources of insight or guidance
than I’d previously imagined or remembered.
May we remember how to bring the wholeness of our humanity —
our deep listening; our patient observation;
our loving, powerful, tender hearts; our humble hands;
and our prayers —
to co-creating the conditions for thriving life.
The poem in this article is reprinted from the book Nature, Culture and the Sacred: A Woman Listens for Leadership by permission of Bioneers/Collective Heritage Institute and Nina Simons, All Rights Reserved. ©2019.