Thursday, December 6, 2012
Planting seeds + Wisdom giveaway!
I think the most challenging part of blogging is crafting an accurate title!
I am loving the response to my last post ... it is so gratifying to see others carrying the conversation into other forums and this is why I churn out words and images on a fairly regular basis. For it is by being In dialogue and discussion with others and that compels me to dig deep and uncover the buried messages and yearnings of my heart and soul. From there, we bring together all our voices so that we can mindfully move forward contributing to the world we want to inhabit and pass on to the next generation.
Lately it seems I have been wrestling with questions that have no easy or apparent answers. I have been conversation with 5 other brave and word-loving souls regarding the topic of Wisdom and how we each define, experience or find it in ourselves and in our lives. This lively debate has spawned an offering I am proud to be a part of:
Bluestocking Introduction from Jill Clifton on Vimeo.
Let me just say, explaining what I mean by wisdom (never mind figuring out how I know it or tap into it!) is a pretty heady experience. I suffered only minor breakdowns in attempting to tangle with wisdom. I am here (in one piece!) to say that I am pretty chuffed (to borrow a favorite term from a favorite thinker/writer) with my offering. And while I don't want to spoil the mystery, I will say that in the end I go beyond the wisdom of the body and the breath (and if you know me - and I think you all do - you probably can figure out where I finally discover my own wisdom resides, patiently and lovingly, awaiting my attention.)
I've had a sneak peek at some of the offerings in this 8 week course (6 presenters) and I can honestly say, it is full of juicy and artful morsels along with the protein component of wisdom. What I love about this project is each of us grants authority to her own process and experience. Each of us uncovers and shares the wisdom gleaned from women's experiences - creativity, connection and conflict of family life, the body, cycles and nature. By recognizing we each can create and claim wisdom within our own lives, we empower others to look within themselves to determine and then align with their wisdom. As a mother, I see the urgency of this message for my young daughter: believe in, and trust yourself.
In celebration of wisdom, I am offering a spot in the Bluestocking Salon's first e-course: The Bones of Wisdom. The course run January 7 - February 25, 2013. For a full description of the course and contents go here. To enter your name for a chance to win, either leave a comment here (one comment per person) or email me to add your name into the hat: Lishofmann(at)novia(dot). If you are a facebook person, then "like" our page and share with your readers (facebook or blog) to receive additional entries. (Let me know how you helped spread the word by either a comment here or email.)
I will draw a name at random next Thursday, December 13 and announce the winner on Friday. Please be sure I have a way of contacting you (or be sure to check in and see if you are the lucky winner!)
I mention planting seeds and I as I move through these thoughts on wisdom, which seems to involve self trust and deep listening, I am continually pulled to create or contribute to some kind of project or program involving girls in that wonderfully formative age range of 8 to preteen (of course, Cowgirl is 8!) Just the other day Cowgirl agreed to an after-school play session with a friend, only to tell me in the car "I really want to be home with you, but I guess I have to make my friend happy and do what she wants." She feared being honest with her friend, saying "She will be angry with me and tell me she doesn't want to be friends anymore." Already she is picking up on the negative message to dismiss her feelings and needs in order to fit in or be accepted.
I can address these issues, but I know deeper and more insidious ones lie far below every day conversations. Somehow, some way I want to chip away at inherited biases and beliefs that bolster gender inequalities. No small task, but listening to this young woman speak, I am compelled to try to make a difference in whatever way I possibly can:
direct link to video here
(This amazing young woman is part of a documentary Somewhere Between which explores the experiences of four teenaged women adopted from China and living in the U.S.)
So tell me, how do we as women claim wisdom for our lives, our stories? How can we empower younger women and girls not only trust in themselves, but stand up and fight for their place as makers and markers of wisdom? Who are the wise ones, the mentors and heroines in our lives? How can we recognize and teach our girls (and ourselves) that, as Fang so clearly expresses it, "We don't have to wait around, we can be our own heroines, our own saviors. But we need mentors."
This is the soil I am turning. The seeds I am tending. I can't help myself. I love that little face with my entire being. I would love your thoughts. I would love the support. I am open, ready, and apparently qualified in wisdom (as are you) so let's get started.