Sunday, April 29, 2012

Ecofeminism, a scholarship essay


Ecofeminism
In 1974 French writer Fran├žoise d'Eaubonne wrote Le Feminisme ou la Mort which coined the term “Ecofeminism”. The term denotes neither a single movement nor philosophy. The term denotes neither a single movement nor philosophy. It is described in the broadest sense as a loosely knit philosophical and practical analytical tool. More specifically, the term examines and critiques the mutual devaluation of women and nature*.
As a woman, I relate strongly to this topic. Anthropologically speaking, many cultures view the earth as feminine. In Shiatsu, a modality I am currently learning at Massage School, we practice the Taoist concepts of
Yin(feminine) and Yang(Masculine); Yin being earth, and Yang being heaven. In Greek mythology, Gaia is "Mother Earth". There is no such deference today from the large corporations in power, generally headed
by men. Though some of the exploitation and destruction is a necessary product of overpopulation, which has been an issue since the Industrial Revolution, with over-development, over-fishing, and generally
disastrous chemical and genetic modifications of existing organisms, we have become, quite literally, a virus upon our so-called "Mother Earth".
It isn’t just today that mankind has been abusing nature and being unconcerned with future generations. In the Roman era, a type of fennel was beneficial as a form of natural birth control. However, they harvested it to extinction when lust and gluttony were rampant. If that strain were available up to today, who knows how much the population growth could have been prevented. Even the Ancient Egyptians, whose culture lasted for thousands of years realized the importance of birth control. Nature saved us again however, since today’s modern birth control pill’s roots were formulated after Russell Marker studied for three years extensive botany, and in the early 60s, oral contraceptive was approved by the FDA to unmarried women. Now it is available to all women in the United States.
Oral contraceptives aren’t the only useful means of birth control and unwanted pregnancies. Now we have many options from IUDs, to abortion. With abortion though, comes other opposition. While driving through Harrisburg Pennsylvania on State Street, one might find with disgust radical anti-abortion protestors showing shocking images of aborted fetuses. What’s even more disgusting and shocking is that there is a daycare four buildings down. Prejudice and hate has become so blind that these radicals are injuring and traumatizing the very children they are trying to protect. Society however, has proven statistically that pro choice is widely beneficial to the safety of our population. According to the book “Freakonomics”, in the 1980’s crime was rampant and then by the mid 90s started drastically dropping. There were many theories about why, but it was discovered that the crime drop was linked to women’s right to abort unwanted pregnancies. The main group that is statistically more inclined to become criminals is children of poor single mothers.
With my education I plan to spread awareness of how humans cannot live without nature, and living in balance and harmony. Many classes, races, and even gender, are being oppressed by their worldviews, or just by who they are. Same sex couples for instance, help balance overpopulation as well. The sex for procreation only agenda is an example of a majority leader(s) pushing their religion on the general population. When church and state are truly separated, then we can have more tolerance. The balance that I speak of is very delicate as well. There does become a point when a minority group can go too far to push their agenda. Our constitution states “Justice for all.”; And the right to embark on “The pursuit of happiness”. 

*(Kheel, Marti. "Chapter 1." In Nature ethics: an ecofeminist perspective. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2008. 8.)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

"You're too nice"

Most of my life I've been told I'm "Really nice" or even "too nice". Well, I'd have to agree. Recently I discovered a bunch of free ebooks on Amazon. One titled "Smart women know when to say no" has really hit home with me. In my previous post Sociopaths, I recognized that I am attracted to the wrong kind of men and I never understood why. This book explains that it is because I am a pleaser. I am the peace keeper and prefer to avoid conflict and keep others happy at the cost of my own. I have never really found a relationship that I've been truly happy with and the more I read this book, the more it make sense why.

The book goes on to explain that it is my relationship with my father that is the root of my wanting to please. It explains that I am a super-suffering pleaser and need professional help. Well, no one wants to admit that they need help like that, but with what I've been through, I wouldn't be surprised. What's stopping me? The price tag. I have never been this poor in my life. However, I am in the path of the right direction. I will be finished with massage school February of next year. Until then, this self help book is supposed to help me towards becoming a pleasant pleaser, which is a woman who is pleasant but knows how to be confident without being cocky, assertive without being abrasive,  and self-nurturing without being selfish.

As I continue my journey towards enlightenment (I'm studying a lot of Tao and Buddhist texts as well as part of my interest in Eastern medicine), I find that I need to heal the mind, body, and soul.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Sociopaths

Talking with the boyfriend earlier, I've come to the conclusion of why most of my relationships have been very damaging. I was sexually abused as a child and that has led me down a road of very bad decisions. One mainly being not having really established boundaries and understanding what is acceptable and what isn't. It also doesn't exactly help that I have very large breasts and have also been viewed as a sex object thus attracting the wrong kind of attention;. What's worse is I seem to attract men with mommy issues.

My ex husband, whom I married at the age of 19 to get away from an overbearing father and disabled mother, is a perfect example. He and I met on-line when I was 16. We dated off and on for a few years because dealing with a long distance relationship is kinda crappy. Well, after we had gotten back together he decided to go to boot camp and join The Marines. While in boot camp we exchanged letters and got close and after he graduated and was on his way to A school in Pensacola, he proposed. I accepted and a month or so later we were married on the beach in a small, intimate ceremony. I then met my mother in law and learned more about my then husband.

Lets rewind now. A few years after the sexual assault I told my father that I think I liked women better. He told me that he never wanted to me my girlfriend but still loved me. His advice was to marry a man and god will make me love him. Hmm well, I took daddy's advice. However, I now know that I really should have spent more time with him and his family before I agreed to marry him. I now know that his main motivation for wanting to get married was so that he could get a bigger paycheck and not have to live in the barracks. I guess being a Marine entailed a little more than he thought. When I left him after him returning from deployment because I realized I was much happier without him, he blamed me for having joined. Well, I didn't really want to be with a man who displayed Sociopathic tendencies.

One day after moving in together in San Diego to start a new life, he suggested we get  kitten. He decided to name the kitten gina as in  vagina. Then as part of his disciplinary techniques, he would hold her under the faucet and half drown her. This scared the crap out of me and made me kinda afraid of him. I also discovered that he was active on websites like adultfriendfinder.com and advertising himself as single on MySpace. This explained why as a newly married couple, he never wanted to procreate.

Then came Matt. Matthew was my second serious relationship. Only, I had no idea just how batshit insane he was. He too was a Marine, only he never got past boot camp and is now on social security disability and living a comfortable life.  Turns out he's bi polar with a really bad drinking problem. He was a big mistake from the beginning. I moved in with him because my friends /  first room mates ever ganged up on me and unfairly accused me of not cleaning/ doing dishes when I was on a different schedule than them and doing it when I got home from work at 4am when everyone was asleep. It was a disaster since my folks were in Florida and I moved in on the spur with people who I thought were awesome. I was a nieve Mormon raised girl and very stupid. Anyhow with my bad decisions came even more bad decisions because well I finally moved out of Matt's apartment and into my own only to get laid off when the economy crashed. Desperate for a job, I accepted a position in Pennsylvania and met another certifiable Sociopath. I wasn't in a romantic relationship with him, just a sexually abusive slave/master one which I didn't have in mind at all when I wanted to play "pet".

I'm a girl with a high pain tolerance and on occasion I like to feel a bit of physical pain from a flogger or paddle, or spankings. But mostly, I just like feeling sensations. I'm not really into the whole, yes master, right away master bit, but the men I've played with like to sexually objectify me into their own personal toy and don't listen. It really makes me want to just live a simple, plain, vanilla life. With my current boyfriend, he seemed to offer that when we first met. He was chilverious, held open doors for me, and acted like a true gentleman. He seemed really awesome, and he still has his moments of pure awesomeness, however, he still falls into the mold of unhealthy relationship. With this said. I at least do know warning signs to look out for to  help avoid falling "victim" again. I am a survivor and a fighter and will some day be treated with the respect and compassion I deserve.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Honey

Today's post is going to be on the lighter side considering that I had a very long day. The boyfriend and I found an awesome dresser curbside and snatched it at 4 am before the dump trucks came. Only problem is finding space in our tiny studio apartment. But, we seem to make things work. As much as the boyfriend and I fight, and I do know that it's an unhealthy relationship, I do appreciate just how brilliant and MaGyvereish he is. Life is a battle everyday with him, but soon enough I'll be rewarded once I finish school next February.

While he's getting his carpenter and many other talents on, I've been taking so much more of an interest in organic, home made, and do it yourself. I'm even going so far as to learning how to crochet (hopefully). One thing though that the boyfriend and I would love to do is to start an apiary. Right now we have a bumble bee and wasp problem. Having been stung by a wasp on the hand this weekend, I have the utmost motivation to get rid of these pests.I found an awesome DYI wasp trap on Pintrest and while coke nor vinegar really seems to attract them, I did at least catch a couple by manually trapping the ones that managed their way inside in to it.

What the boyfriend and I do agree upon is that we would rather have a hive of honey bees. There seems to be a variety of ways to care for them and some actually don't seem that expensive. He wants the honey bees more as a means to deter the bumble bees and wasps. but I would rather learn how to cultivate the honey since I am quite fond of this awesome and medicinal sweetener. If the ancient Egyptians figured out the many versatile uses of honey, and there's an affordable means to do it organically, well, why not?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Healing

            Over the years many hurts and debilitating emotional pain has really added up. Most of it is from very unhealthy relationships. The saying "You cannot love someone else until you love yourself is very true. For the past few years I have really felt like I've just been going through the motions of life and not really living it. Yes, there are moments of clarity and calmness when I visited places like "Ricket's Glen" in Northern Central Pennsylvania, and nature has been a very good healer, but I'll elaborate on that later. Right now, I'm struggling to make since on why my life has seemed to go from all right and actually getting somewhere, to all wrong in just one year. But this isn't anything new; it seems to always go that way whenever a man is present in my life. Science shows that writing and letting out raw emotions is very therapeutic, thus here are my thoughts.

            I started this blog, not as a means to gain sympathy, but as a means to heal and share my story with others so that perhaps they might gain some insight, inspiration, ect. I want the numbness and feelings of isolation to go away. I want to not feel so socially awkward, and most of all I want more confidence and love for myself. I want to not be afraid anymore, and I want to not be such an easy target for sociopaths and men who just want to control and use me. Science shows that writing and letting out raw emotions is very therapeutic. So begins my path for self enlightenment and healing.

          Recently I began classes to become a licensed Massage Therapist. So far I have met a group with similar values and beliefs. I have been so amazed with all the knowledge that I have collected over the years from books and articles, and how some of those books that have collected dust never to be read, are completely relevant now. One of those books is on Taoism. So far everything I've learned is very complex, yet simple. In Shiatsu class (which is Japanese Finger Pressure massage), we learned a little bit about how it got it's roots from a Buddhist monk that traveled to Japan. We learned about the Yin and Yang which explains how everything has an opposite, yet one cannot exist without the other, which is a very Taoist philosophy. I suddenly found myself more receptive and open to learning and have felt that I just can't get enough information. I spend most of my free time reading articles from a new found obsession: Pinterest, and connecting with authors on Facebook. I had absolutely no idea that I could find all of this information at my fingertips! I literally feel like a sheet has been taken off my eyes, and I have "woken up" to truth.

          As an Environmental Science major, I understood the benefits of going green, but I didn't know how. I could live and appreciate an organic and sustainable lifestyle, and I had no clue where to even begin. The science and logic told me that Monsanto and GMOs were bad; that pesticides are creating hypoxic (lack of oxygen) zones in the Gulf of Mexico, where life cannot live, due to run off from the Mississippi, and that if something doesn't change, our culture will become more sick and diseased. I also understood why. Monsanto is playing a role in population control, and greatly profiting from it. Humans really are the Earth's worst virus and we're still breeding like we're going into extinction. Unfortunately the Earth also suffers from the greed and corruptness of Monsanto and other big corporations that run the United States.

          Since my path toward Enlightenment however, I have been feeling much more alive and vibrant and thanks to these articles I can now understand and appreciate why going green and heading towards completely organic and sustainability is the wisest lifestyle change I can make. I've also taken a healthy interest in Eastern Medicine (thanks to Shiatsu) and Ayurveda (Indian hemopathic medicine that can heal better than alopathic medicine. With my hormones feeling more balanced, and my aches and pains not so severe from practicing Yoga, my emotional pain has lessened too. Over the course of this blog, I will share articles, projects I'm working on, and hopefully inspiration and awareness. Enjoy!