Saving the World One Woman at a Time – Part Three
Saving the World One Woman at a Time Part Three
“The world will be saved by western women.”
I’d like to share with you how you, as an individual woman, doing the work you do, facing the multitude of struggles and challenges, while having big dreams, and caring for so many, can make an impact that is felt here at home and across the world. This is about the health of the human spirit, your spirit. And this is where we will explore the Dalai Lama’s statement that inspires many into action.
The Dalai Lama stated that the western woman can save the world at the Vancouver Peace Summit in 2009. He was in attendance with some pretty impressive women such as 3 nobel peace laureates, a female president, many humanitarians and other accomplished women who work tirelessly for a better world.
But let’s get behind this. What does it really mean, especially for women living in Canada? Was the Dalai Lama simply referring to the incredible work of the women who attended that conference? Or was it a prophetic message and call to action spoken to every woman, especially western women? Let’s take a look at some viewpoints and you can follow along in your handout.
Marianne Hughes, ED of the Institute for Social Change has her take on what he may have meant. She says “… I am wondering if when he travels across the globe and sees so many of our sisters impoverished and repressed he sees western women of all ages in a position to speak out for justice and to take on the responsibility […] to take loving care of the planet and its people.”
The Dalai Lama has said that his prodigious compassion was inherited from his mother and he believes that women, “with their nurturing instinct, are naturally more compassionate.” Source.
He also speaks about the incredible impact women, “have played in his decades-long effort to alleviate suffering in the developing world.” Source.
Annie Burnside who wrote an article for Chicago Now, believes, “that the western woman holds much power to change our world into a more peaceful, harmonious and unified community that truly celebrates differences rather than separates because of them.” Source. She believes, and rightfully so, that there is a, “spiritual awakening […] occurring right here, right now in our neigbourhoods, […] at little league games, and in our workplaces.” Source.
Another author, Vanessa Fisher wants to ensure that this statement “doesn’t over-inflate the sense of self-importance in western women saying that women have a very significant role to play as leaders in the next 20-50 years, including ALL women throughout the world,” and she is right. She offers a, “re-frame of “save the world” to instead reign in and cultivate our capacity to deeply listen to the world, and to support the natural intelligence and leadership that already exists within communities.” She believes our, “wealth, freedom and access as well as the unique knowledge and wisdom obtained in the West could be best utilized by having western women really join efforts across continents, cultures and genders and to be of most service to others.” * Entire paragraph paraphrased and sourced here.
My interpretation is a coming together of all of these viewpoints. This is a critical time to be a woman. We are experiencing higher degrees of freedom, are owning our self worth, we have more confidence, more opportunities, are taking more risks, prioritizing our self-expression and really beginning to understand the importance of self-care. I believe we need to take the time to forgive and heal ourselves from life experiences and judgments we make on ourselves. I believe there is a spiritual awakening that sees the rise of feminine leadership. Lastly I believe we have a responsibility to women throughout the world.
Many have been inspired by and have taken the Dalai Lama’s statement as a call to action. Karen Tate, a feminist theologian and author of Goddess Calling says, “we still live in a patriarchy world that has permeated every level of society from womb to tomb, boardroom to bedroom, voting booth to the workplace. We must shift into a more fair, equal and just world of partnership, sharing, caring and peace.” Source. Karen challenges us to, “Lead. Learn. Volunteer and Vote” and I will add “Take Action.” It’s about doing things differently, instinctually, and coming from our feminine energy. When we do this together and in support of each other the impact is far greater.
Now you may be sitting here and thinking “what can I do with this?”, “Where should I spend my energy?” or “how can I make this happen?”
Let’s remember what Karen Tate said about LEAD – LEARN – VOLUNTEER – VOTE – along with TAKING ACTION ACTION – and doing it TOGETHER.
* This is a four part series blog. Stay tuned for Part Four – Healing Self First