We women have been taught through various processes of familial indoctrination, propaganda distribution and social osmosis that we are responsible for the feelings of everyone around us. Indeed, we are responsible to such an extent that our own feelings must take a backseat to those of others – if they are allowed to matter at all. We are told that to honor our intuition is foolish; to take a stand on behalf of our own emotional health is heretical and anti-family. The roles of daughter, sister, wife, mother and grandmother have been drawn, designed, proscribed and produced in many ways by people who will never fill these rolls and to serve a world order that has long since lost sight of the sacredness and beauty of the Divine Feminine. Thus to paraphrase the Bard the mystery, magic and mysticism of womanhood from cradle to grave "like a foul and ugly witch, doth limp so tediously away..."
Any woman is at best ridiculed who dares stand up and say the Witch is neither foul nor ugly; she is an empowered feminine archetype from whom all women, Witch or no, might learn. Any woman who asserts without reservation that she will not live by proxy, wholly and consistently subjugating her will and feelings to those of another is counted as bitter, unwholesome, unnatural, unintelligent, and leave us not forget Freud’s masterful putdown of women as a group – hysterical.
Recently, I was called a bitter old woman by a person who is apparently thick enough to think that I would be offended by the term “old woman.” The word bitter convinced me that I had done the right thing in disassociating myself from her and through her the last link to what is laughingly referred to as my family (blood relatives that is). Still, it is a hard thing to do; and I have done it before. Once again, my Pagan philosophy does not allow me to judge or blame anyone; nonetheless, I must walk my Karmic path avoiding what is incompatible with the joy inherent in the life Goddess has given me and the learning She expects.
In Pagan Theology there is an aspect of the Great Goddess known as Lilith. She is thought to have been the first wife of Adam who looked around and said, “Rib, my ass. Can’t eat from the tree of knowledge and I am gone.” With that she walked out of the Garden of Eden under Her own steam. She has been portrayed as a serpent, a harlot, a demon … well we all know that game. To Pagan women she is viewed as a shero or a woman with the courage to take risks on her own behalf. When things get rocky for me I think of an affirmation which I share here for all those in need: I refuse to allow the opinions of others to authorize or control my state of mind. I am the mistress of my thoughts and feelings. I banish worry and invoke happiness. I am open to the pleasures and ecstasy of life for I am LILITH. Blessed be.