The world cannot contain all the books declaring who a woman can be. There are innumerable roles a woman can play. Yet, stories that women tell of themselves are very similar, independent of time and space. These stories place women in the same roles, and a pattern of role playing is repeated. These repeated patterns are expressions of a woman’s deeper self. They tell of the femininity housed within every woman.
This femininity is easily perceived simply by reading the woman herself. Only in this way can one know her, and her author knows her better than she knows herself. The woman’s self that one knows is the woman’s character, and her character is that which is written in her heart. Just as a character develops in a story, so also does a woman’s femininity develop in her book of life.
This is the story that has been told, and the story is true.
Every woman wants someone in her life, even if the only someone is God. Without a someone, a woman does not exist, because her existence is shaped by her relationship with that one.
Most women have many someones. They may have some fours, or sevens, or tens upon tens. Every one of these relationships forms her sense of self and contours her life, and she in turn shapes the lives of them. She is because of her relationships.
Because she desires to develop her character, and because her character is shaped by her relationships, then a woman is inspired by and aspires to enter into relationships that develop her character. Since her character is written deeply inside her heart, and since she treasures her existence as a woman, then she desires relationships that permit her to blossom into a whole woman, because a woman with holes in her heart is drained of character.
To fully grow into wholeness, or to fill holes in her heart, a woman must fulfill seven roles. Her natural cycle normally proceeds in order, but the path to wholeness is not always orderly.
The daughter plays. She dreams about and pretends to be the other roles. She puts them on to see how they fit, and models the women who wear them. The daughter celebrates and honors both the roles and the women who star in them, and being dazzled by their brilliance, she herself will become a star.
The daughter serves. She gives to those she trusts, and she trusts those who give love to her. Only by trusting can she accept their love, and accepting their love is the best way to serve them. Thus, to trust is to love, and to love is to trust.
By entrusting herself to those larger than herself, the daughter plays the role of the small. By playing small in service for those she loves, she makes herself great. In this way she learns the great value of serving. First, a twinkle. Then, a star.
The sister is the matured daughter. As daughter, she continues placing faith in those greater than her, and begins to have faith in those who are like her. By playing with and serving those who–like her–are both small and great, the sister learns to support others, her sisters and brothers, who in turn uphold her. By putting trust in those whom she supports, she makes herself vulnerable to those whom she serves, and in this way prepares to star in the role of mother. Because she trusts, loves, and upholds those who are like her, she prepares to do likewise for herself.
Because the sister’s faith, love, and support of her sisters and brothers is the same as for herself, then she does not distinguish between these for herself and these for them. To give to herself is to give to them, and to give to them is to give to herself. Her sisters and brothers do likewise. This is how they support themselves and one another as many members in one family.
The virgin is preparing to enter the second cycle of time in her life. She is the sister and daughter blooming into the wife and mother. The roles of a girl are germinating into the roles of a woman. As a woman, she will delight in a new form of play, and her service for others will mature beyond being merely an option into being a duty and a privilege.
Until the time of harvest, she protects her sex from blight, and expresses it in a manner appealing to the man who will be faithful. She tends to it, ensuring it is neither stunted nor overgrown, because the man who works the earth desires neither hardened soil nor weed. Hardened earth is laborsome, and an unkempt garden is easily abandoned.
The virgin must be taught to be unashamed of her femininity. The glory of God is not designed to be hidden. Her sexuality does not blossom in darkness, but only when touched by the light of the Sun at the proper time.
Just as the virgin is genuine in sexuality, so also in character. She is growing in awareness of right and wrong, and is developing conviction and faithfulness to serve what is good and true. She protects her heart and mind from decay, cultivating them to ensure that the light of life and the wind of clarity leave no part of her unkissed and uncaressed. Her service for others is designed to bring the life to them that she herself is receiving.
The virgin’s sexuality and character are being merged like husband and wife. They are joining while being distinct. The virgin is preparing to bring together both play and service so that when her sister and daughter roles mature she may, as wife and mother, play with her man and model for her children how to serve.
Beauty is for a woman what power is for a man. It is her perfect expression of femininity. The femininity of the virgin is revealed entirely as the virgin is shaped into a woman. It happens in a flash; a near instantaneous act of creation sparked by the words that let it be, and she radiates unblemished womanhood. She is a new birth. First, a twinkle. Now, a star.
This wedding ceremony is the completion of one cycle and the beginning of one new. Thus, the bride is simultaneously virgin and wife. She is not fully wife, that is, until consummation. She is not fully virgin, because she is no longer preparing to be wife.
A wife has entered the second cycle of her life. Like the first cycle, she plays and serves. But, her playmate and person of power is her husband, and, she serves by teaching him what he cannot learn by himself, sharing with him insight and wisdom. When he sees clearly what is right in front of him, a wife shows what is behind and around him. When he sees clearly the order of things, a wife shows him how the order can change.
A wife tells her husband what he does not already know.
A wife trusts her husband, lets him love her, and receives his love without resistance. Because she trusts him, she does not fear his masculinity, but desires to be overwhelmed by it. She lets him be a man, because if he is not a man then he will not make her feel like a woman.
Being a man, his instinct is to guard his heart. A man guards his heart like a woman guards her body. His heart is his vulnerability just as her body is hers. As husband and wife, however, they cease guarding their vulnerabilities, and begin giving them to each other. By making themselves vulnerable, they give each other the power to destroy, and in so doing, their relationship becomes indestructible.
The husband and wife give to each other what they cannot give to themselves.
The mother is the fulfillment of femininity and womanhood. “Mother” is to “woman” what “adult” is to “child”. The woman who is mother continues to experience personal growth, but her femininity cannot grow beyond motherhood. A woman cannot represent womanhood more than how the mother represents it. As the fulfillment of femininity and womanhood, the mother contains all the feminine roles within her, now weaved into one role: mother.
The mother is daughter because she serves. Whereas the daughter serves those who are greater, the mother serves those who are less. Serving those who are less makes her a ruler. Thus, the mother is both servant and ruler.
The mother is sister because she supports. The father rules, and orders the family. The mother supports the father’s duties just as he ensures she can continue to fulfill hers. By mastering their own roles as mother and father, they permit the other to master their role as father and mother. They each maintain a treasured purpose in their kingdom, and in so doing, teach their children the value of both the feminine and the masculine.
The mother is virgin because her sexuality and character are not tainted by (severe) unfaithfulness to virtue, or to the father. She is genuine, treating her body, heart, mind, and spirit as conduits for both giving to and receiving love from the father and her children.
The mother is a true bride because she is the most beautiful. The beauty of the bride is dependent upon the bride as potential wife and mother; it is the wife and mother roles that make a bride, “The Bride”. Thus, the beauty of the bride, once seen externally, is now permanently internal, and seen eternally by those who understand the value of femininity, of which the mother is the fulfillment.
The mother is wife because she gives what no one else can. The wife gives to her husband her body, her trust, and her respect, and shares with him insight that he could not possibly possess on his own. Similarly does the mother give to her children; warm embraces, open ears, and thoughtful wisdom.
The Mother and Father Join As One
The mother supports the father, and teaches her children to respect and honor him. In this way, she teaches them how to be humble. By teaching them that she and the father have authority, and that they exercise authority in service of them, the mother teaches the children that love is power. Since this power is exercised in service of those less than mother and father, then the mother demonstrates that those in power are to be humble. Together, the mother and father unite the apparent opposites of power and humility.
The Mother, Father, and Child Are Three In One
The mother, father, and child become mother, father, and child in the same moment. One does not exist before the other, such that their existence is mutually interdependent. The mother gives the child her body, and the father gives the child his mind. Their love centers in the child, who is their heart created by their giving of mind and body, which they have given to one another and now give to their child.
Mother As Earth
The mother is the Earth, the father is the Sun, and the wind is the love moving between them. The mother teaches the child to respect the power of the Sun, the father shows how to take in the beauty of the Earth, and in so doing they enable the child to breath their love that gives life to the world.
This child is a sprout nurtured by the Earth, and the mother is the Earth in whom a child always has roots. A small plant needs extra care, and a large plant cares for itself, but no matter how big, their roots are always in the mother. These roots are secured with the traditions that the mother teaches to her children. Traditions are special ways the mother uses to guide her children. They bind children to the family by connecting their past to their future, experienced and lived in the present moment.
The grandmother is the third cycle of a woman’s life on Earth. Being grand, she is great; greater than the mother, but without authority over her. She is supermother or “mother mother”. The grandmother’s privilege is to guide her daughter in her motherhood by sharing wisdom, to ensure the mother is teaching traditions to the children, and to act as spiritual guide to the family.
When the mother was a child daughter or virgin, then her mother ruled over her. Her wisdom had authority, and could behave as commands. However, when a virgin becomes mother, and her mother becomes grandmother, authority over her leaves the grandmother and rests with the new mother. The grandmother’s wisdom continues being a light in the mother’s world, but the mother is now privileged with having her own light to guide her own child.
The light of wisdom shines for the benefit of keeping relationships together, healthy and whole, with God, people, and nature. Traditions bind us together and teach us how to relate by securing meaning within those relationships. Knowing what a relationship means allows us to know how to be together. Thus, the grandmother monitors the mother to ensure she is passing wisdom to her children via the traditions that teach children how to live in harmony with God, people, and nature.
Whereas the mother is Earth, the grandmother is in-between Earth and Heaven. Having experienced time on Earth, she is keenly aware of the past. She is a living ancestor. Being closer to eternity in Heaven, she is acutely aware of the future, and looks beyond today. The grandmother, more than the mother, is aware of the passage of time. Thus, although grandmothers represent the past, they also work as guides into the future for the benefit of generations to come.
Roles of the Feminine: Flower Model
As symbolized in the flower model, the seven feminine roles proceed counterclockwise, and each with her own color. These roles are: daughter (yellow), sister (orange), virgin (pink), bride (red), wife (green), mother (blue), and grandmother (purple moon). The Earth is in the center.