August 31, 2012

{The Feminine Heart}

 [This is the second of two essays (extracted from my book-in-progress, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride) posted commemorating the 15th anniversary of Princess Diana's death.]

Fifteen years ago today, like other strangers around the world, I awoke to the startling headlines that Princess Diana was dead. And also like millions of strangers, I sat with my disbelief in what felt like some deep soulful missing.
I had watched her glittering wedding in 1981—hosting a 4 a.m. tea and scones party in Atlanta—but the tabloid quality of her life that followed held no appeal. However, Diana became more intriguing to me in the aftermath of her death. I began looking beyond the glitter, beyond the drama and angst, beyond the soap opera-like life style—even beyond her bold acts of hands-on kindness—and saw into the background where what was really happening over Diana’s short lifetime came out of the shadows, something even touched with a bit of the divine.
Jungian analyst Derek Lamar speaks about Diana’s healing force in her expression of femaleness and how, at her death, “our sense of loss was also finding something that we didn’t know was there…the female aspect within ourselves.” This nurturing, more compassionate feminine dimension has been missing in action for the world as a whole, including as a way to bring balance within women and men individually. Diana’s death became a universal recognition of “what we thought we lost was our moment of finding ourselves.”
So was the princess who said she “[led] with her heart, not her head” here to assist in bringing “our imbalance as humans” to a close? Was the princess who dared to hold her young sons close to make them strong yet tender-hearted men—challenging royal custom—here to start a revolution of the heart? Was the “ungloved” princess who taught a staid, out-of-touch monarchy (and culture) what real compassion was like—as she fearlessly embraced the diseased and maimed—here to break open a world of equality, even a world of do-unto-others love and kindness? Was the princess who, in her search for love and deep connection with another, who stumbled and felt insufficient and made some deceitful decisions, also the same woman who opened the hearts of a tired and complacent people? 

Is it any accident then that Diana’s life not only came on the cusp of the third wave of modern feminism, but also landed during the beginning energies of what some consider the Aquarian Age? This is the age said to bring the feminine principle of relatedness and cooperation, the age of “Holy Breath”; a new era  geared to last over the next several thousand years. Was Diana’s life to help us interpret these feminine energies so that both women and men could integrate them into their personal experiences, then send their healing quality out into a harsh world in need of nurturing?

Whether we’re under the compassionate influence of the Age of Aquarius or some other new world order shaped by a beautiful princess—or whether you only trust and believe what you can see, hear, taste, smell or physically feel—whatever you believe or don’t believe, once you’ve looked deep into your own heart, underneath the resignation and fear, it’d be hard to deny that the world is not dancing to a new, breaking-open-of-spirit tune! And although the naysayers and complainers and mean-spirited pundits out there may be really loud and forceful, and a world of equality and cooperation may seem like a distant dream, “nothing changes the environment,” as Neale Donald Walsch wrote, “like one person deciding to love another, no matter what.” (A princess who wanted to be the Queen of people’s hearts couldn’t have said it better herself!)

Hmmmmm. I don’t know if Jupiter aligns with Mars or not, or what House the Moon is in, but I do know that “love  [can indeed] steer the stars” and just maybe we are in—dare I hope?—the true dawning of the Age of Aquarius …dawning into a world really in need of a “love-in”! ~


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