Hi there soulsisters,
I have just been away facilitating a silence retreat around the theme of nourishing and empowering the soul with gentleness, kindness and love, and was thinking about what to share with you from the weekend. As I was checking through my facebook, emails etc I came across two items relating to conventional morality surrounding the treatment of women and the resulting societal problems. So I thought I would share these with you as it seemed that seeing two separate items on this was telling me to do so.
The first item I came across was an interview with Sister Denise Lawrence, a senior teacher with the Brahma Kumaris. The interview discusses the subject “Morality and Gender”. Denise talks about the history of traditional morals surrounding gender and how conventional morality disempowers and disadvantages women. She also talks about methods like ‘talking about our feelings and what is happening to us with each other more’ to begin to break down the mystique and silence surrounding violence towards women and children.
The second item was an interview on the Australian current affairs program, 60 Minutes. The interview is with a young mother who has recently been found guilty of the manslaughter of her estranged husband. The presiding Judge sentenced her to the time she had already done in jail, so effectively she was free, and her lawyer is appealing her conviction.
Jessica Silva had been for many years, consistently and very badly abused by her husband. The part of the interview which had been posted on Facebook was only a few minutes long and at that point I didn’t know the full story, but it struck me that she was giving the same message as Sister Denise. Jessica tells of wearing two faces. One, her ‘public face’ so that her family thought she was happy, and then her ‘behind closed doors’ face where she was scared, timid and fearful of every move she made.
Personally, I know of two close family members who have been abused by partners. I was horrified to learn of one of them just recently, after 25 years! This resulted in a broken tooth in the side of her mouth which needed to be crowned. Just lately also, I have been told of a woman in her 70’s who has left her husband after being abused all of her married life.
Especially as women, I feel very strongly about supporting each other – being aware, being open and being able and willing to help any sister in need. I’d like to suggest that anyone reading this today, please make a point this week to take a little extra time and make a little extra effort to get to know the women in your life, whether it be at home or work, your neighbour, or a woman at the local supermarket, or at the bus stop. If only to let another woman know that she needn’t feel isolated and alone.
The interview with Jessica Silva can be seen via The Kindness Project The piece was posted on Sunday 19th April.
The interview with Sister Denise is at Morality and Gender. I’m sure you will enjoy and learn from them.