Milkweed

Milkweed

Mt Nebo has beautiful extensive natural rain forests, many thousands of years old. Many of the flowers that called out to me to be made into essences were wild flowers, and when I began my research into the botanical qualities of these flowers, I found that many of them were described as weeds. Weeds are classically seen as vigorous growers that take over a cultivated garden, when left free to grow. This indicates that they have a powerfully strong and vital life force that expresses itself with rampant growth, when unrestrained.

Weeds are only called weeds because they grow where a gardener is planning to grow a flower they have chosen. In other words, weeds are weeds because someone has said they are. For example, Lantana is a hugely out-of-control plant in Australia; it loves the Australian climate. Because it overgrows natural bushland and chokes it off, it is a declared noxious weed. In its native American home, Lantana is admired and prized for its beauty and colourful long-lasting flowering display, and is actively cultivated.

I laughed out loud when I recognized the symbolism of making up wild flower essences to specifically help women. Over the span of millennia, in many cultures, women have been controlled and constrained, legally, medically and through the churches – treated as weeds!

Some may say that the reason women have been so constrained is because they hold such a central position in the lives of those with whom they share the intimate zone: their life partners and their children.

In the latter case, it is well known that a mother’s influence is one we carry, regardless of gender, throughout our lives. Is it not the mark of a man that he cut the apron strings as he is stepping out into the big, wide world so that he can exert his masculinity? By having power over the women in his life, especially when it comes to his sexual partners, he is able to exert his male dominance, a natural urge scripted into his male biology.

This attitude has been especially evident in a number of cultures, where women’s sexuality is totally repressed, through the clothing they are required to wear and the social position they are relegated to, to ensure that the male keeps his own sexual impulses under control.

So when weeds and wild flowers are constrained and controlled as they are in cultivated gardens, they are unable to express their natural vigour and strong life force, just like women, who have been restrained from free expression within society.

The symbolism jumped out at me immediately, considering the shift currently taking place at the global level from a masculine-principle world-view to the feminine-principle one. As women we have long fitted into a prevailing mind-set that is deeply rooted in the masculine principle. Cosmopolitan values within this paradigm include hierarchy (there’s a bottom and a top and to get to the top, which we are all expected to want to do, you have to use your intellect not your feelings), logical thought (valued over intuitive thought), linear progression (in spite of the fact that nature moves in circles) and competitive values (working against somebody rather than with them).
Now, I am not suggesting that there is anything wrong with the values described above That is, unless they are the ONLY values operating within a society.

Feminine values are very different. These favour power-sharing, intuitive knowing, networking for optimum outcomes, and process-orientated approaches.

When both sets of values are acknowledged and valued equally, they can create a perfectly balanced society. Then, instead of competing with one another, males and females can together mould the structure and functioning of the everyday world we live in. Up until fairly recently however, feminine values have taken second position, and cosmopolitan mainstream society has largely expressed masculine values.

These essences can help women to reclaim their place in the world, embrace the incoming feminine energies, and bring much-needed balance to our world.

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