November 30, 2012

{A Divine Destiny} Part Two

[This is Part Two of a two-part excerpt from "A World of Celebrity"... a section of my upcoming book The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress.]

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, as well as within men and women individually. Diana’s death became a universal recognition of “what we thought we lost was our moment of finding ourselves.”

No wonder that young, feminine, vulnerable, beautiful bride drew us into her world so profoundly, capturing something of our hearts to make sure that we paid close attention so not to miss the deeper messages that would require our “big Self” to hear and see. 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—we see into the background of what was being acted out. And there, what was really happening over Diana’s short lifetime comes out of the shadow.

After her divorce and a year or so before her death, Diana was searching for a greater sense of freedom: for love and relationship, for a place to live to have a safe and more private life as well as to be able to explore a deeper relationship with herself. She may not have found such personal freedom, yet we see results of her influence in the more authentic lives her ex-husband and two sons are living, including Charles’ and William’s relationships with their wives.

So whether we’re under the influence of the Age of Aquarius, or the energies of planet Venus, or some 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 on heart, it’d be hard to deny that the world is indeed dancing to a new tune! And although the naysayers and complainers and mean-spirited pundits out there may be really loud and forceful, and 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.”

What if we used Diana’s life—not what we might consider“right or wrong, or whether she found “true love,” or if she stumbled or soared but if we use the immense energy of her life’s impact (that became undeniable at her death and we can now see years later in the lives she helped shape), to inspire a worldwide movement? A movement where people get to choose from their wise, authentic self to build empowering, nurturing relationships where, no matter their background or family traditions or personal fears, they are encouraged to open their hearts to give and receive unconditional love. What if this bigger picture of Diana’s life—looking beyond the story, the illusion and the fairy tale into the deep spirit of her life—inspired establishing a platform for the possibility of, what author Gary Zukav calls, “spiritual partnerships”? What if?

I wrote the above paragraph five or so years before Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding and now, thanks to his mother’s legacy, are we not seeing this possibility realized? I believe we’ll see in the relationship of this open-hearted, grounded, aware and appealing modern couple—the future King and Queen of Great Britain—a template for “spiritual partnership” lived out on one of the most spot-lit world stages. “What if?”indeed! ~

[This is Part Two of a two-part excerpt from "A World of Celebrity"... a section of my upcoming book The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress.]

November 22, 2012

{A Divine Destiny} Part One

[This is Part One of a two-part excerpt from "A World of Celebrity"... a section of my book-in-progress The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress.]

As experiences of archetypal personalities can do, living out her life on a world stage put the spotlight not only on Princess Diana’s “small self” (fearful and manipulative) and her “big Self” (intuitively aware and kind-hearted), but also on the weaknesses and strengths of all of us. And I believe the message of her life is about honoring our life by learning to love ourselves just the way we are and be willing to grow into the person that our wiser self knows we can become. Some call her life a sacrifice; I call it a divine destiny.

Astrologer Steffan G. Vanel, author of a book on Diana from 2005, stated in Oracle 20/20 magazine: “…there is no doubt that there was something archetypal in our collective experience of Diana, something involving a Princess, being royal, and thus something elevated or potentially attuned to higher spiritual forces, with divine feminine qualities.”

Nor is it an accident that Diana’s life came as signs pointed to the beginning of what’s known as the Aquarian Age; an age that is said to bring the feminine principle of relatedness and cooperation. “Or imbalance as humans,” Derek Lamar wrote, “is coming to a close as we begin to realize ‘Oneness.’ Princess Diana expresses the love, care, and nurturing aspects of true femaleness which mankind intuitively was attracted to, as a magnet has a force which pulls until there is contact (Oneness).” Diana’s life was to help us interpret these feminine energies so both women and men can then integrate them not only into our personal experience, but also into a harsh world in need of nurturing.

As the world is opening more and more to the feminine heart, it’s interesting to explore what ancient scholars meant by these astrologically named universal energies. In her studies of matriarchal societies, author Ellie Crystal wrote:

The Aquarian Age is meant to reconcile ancient dichotomies, to integrate male and female energies, and to coordinate heart and mind and right and left hemispheres of the brain. Wherever polarities exist, we have an opportunity to raise consciousness and find a higher perspective from which to view life—a more balanced position, if you will.

From what I understand, on this metaphysical level, it requires the feminine energies to take the lead in order to have an era of consciousness and light. Was that part of Princess Diana’s purpose—to help prepare the way? “Within the psyche,” spiritual author Llewellyn Vaughn-Lee writes, “the feminine carries the mystery hidden in the dance of creation. As much as she is a temptress, she is also a guide who, like Dante’s Beatrice, can lead a man to the secret places of the soul.”

Of course, as it can with an individual, both masculine and feminine energies can get out of balance on a broader scale with an entire cultural era becoming skewed. And “just as in our time line we see masculine force misused, evidence is that at a certain time in the past, woman over-reached her power,” Crystal explained. But thank goodness the pendulum swings and we’re in a cycle of civilization moving back toward fairness similar to “the last era of equality, [where] allegedly male and female powers were of equal importance.”

It may not feel like parity from where you are standing; there’s a great deal of turmoil out there. However, notice the key topics in today’s news: people’s health; the welfare and rights of women and children; quality of food and water; condition of the Earth; standing up for democracy—issues that spring from the nurturing aspect in us. “There is a reason that the Divine Feminine has awoken first upon the Earth,” explains teacher and natural healer Norma Gentile about current events. “She provides the context, reflection and container (Grail) into which the Sacred Masculine energies might safely fall. Without this container, the Sacred Masculine energies are more apt to be utilized in a linear ‘get it all done’ manner.” (Or in more day-to-day language: Left to their own “small self” devices, men may over-do, women may under-do, but working together with their “big Self” leading—being reflective, thoughtful, patient and creative—we are more apt to move toward peaceful resolution and equality.) ~

[This is Part One of a two-part excerpt from "A World of Celebrity"... a section of my book-in-progress, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress. Part Two will be posted in a week or so!]


November 13, 2012

{Changing Times & Girl Power} Part Three

[This is the last of a three-part excerpt from my book-in-progress, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress. It's taken from a section titled, "Women Attending Women." ]

There is a wonderful song, written by the late Linda Creed and Michael Masser and made famous in the mid-1980s by Whitney Houston, called “The Greatest Love of All.” The ballad reminds us that the greatest love is inside us. The song’s lyrics are a call to adults that their most important job is to teach children how beautiful they are inside and out, to encourage them to play their happy dance, and to be living proof that they too can always find strength and courage through love.

I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be.
Because the greatest love of all is happening to me
I found the greatest love of all inside of me
The greatest love of all is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself, it is the greatest love of all.
The song lyrics encourage us to “find your strength in love” and to “not give away your dignity” and that “love is always inside you.” However, there are times when we may feel love is not enough, especially when we have to explain some difficult things to our children since television and the Internet bring a volatile, hostile world graphically into our laps. The fears that rise up with the changes in global societies are also bringing increased abuse to women and children around the world. When we learn of these atrocities via the news, documentaries, books and films, it’s hard to know sometimes what to do to help or what to tell our children.
During her lifetime, Princess Diana went straight into this fire with open arms and a mother’s courage to bring her loving energy and to put the world on notice: Women and children will not be denied a voice! ~
[This is the last of a three-part excerpt from my book-in-progress, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress. For the other two parts, click on "Changing Times & Girl Power" in the Labels list below.]

November 1, 2012

{Changing Times & Girl-Power} Part Two

[This is the second of a three-part excerpt from my book-in-progress, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress. It's taken from a section titled, "Women Attending Women." ]

Diana also felt more open to bring her lighthearted playfulness into her life and relationships—something that at times had been criticized as inappropriate as HRH. But her giggly joke telling, big appealing laugh and sense of fun was one of the things her friends remember the most. “Laughter was ‘the essential ingredient in our relationship,’ wrote longtime pal Annabel [Goldsmith] in the Daily Mail after Diana’s death,” reported biographer Sally Bidell Smith.  

Jungian analyst Josephine Evetts-Secker believes that one of the strongest archetypes or models in the Diana complex was that of puella—the playful girl. It is an energy that, although it can “carry vital spiritual energy,” can be “misunderstood and misinterpreted, because of its lightness and intense spontaneity.”  Evetts-Secker explains in her essay for the book When a Princess Dies that “our culture does not know how to love maturing girls; this is an area of deep neurosis. We seem to sentimentalize and/or exploit them. There is much fear of them, because of their power to seduce. Yet we are so susceptible to innocence, longing for it and mistrusting it simultaneously.”
Do we fear what fully opens us to our most tender, spacious, light-hearted self? Is it our vulnerability that frightens us the most? What would the world be like if we had more wholesome playful energy; more lighthearted thoughtful energy; more genuine spontaneous energy; more lovingly shared touching energy? Was this at the heart of what Diana was attempting to bring to the world? “We might give Diana’s story the title ‘The Princess who wanted to play’. This does not exclude the possibility of being taken seriously; in fact, it must enforce it, if we can only reform our conception of play,” Evetts-Secker concludes.

The “playful nurturer on a serious mission” is perhaps Diana’s most personal legacy for women. To play with heart is the way to keep the “power” in the “girl-power” that began stirring again throughout the world in the 1990s. We are encouraged to use our innate nurturing abilities—no matter the circumstances swirling in our lives—to help “tender” the world’s frayed edges, as we bring a tenderness to our own. And we are set free to play! To be a “well-rounded” grown-up, a life coach friend of mine encouraged his class to “combine the playfulness of a child with the intelligence of an adult.” Shake loose any “shoulda, coulda, woulda” cobwebs that might be holding you back and go play in the divine, blessed, infinitely abundant universe awaiting you.

Finding our own lost or suppressed “little girl playfulness” can assist young girls in finding their authentic self—and love what they find! In this noisy, frenzied second decade of the still new millennium, young girls—the puella of our time—have many harsh, mean-spirited, and vulgar role models. They are pressured to conform to a peer group, many of which are based on these same extreme anger-prone role models. They are bombarded with messages in today’s youth oriented, image driven world to look beautiful and sexy like a Barbie doll or fashion model or rock star. Young girls are bought padded bras to wear even before their breast develop, sending misconstrued messages to boys in their world. The confused mixed messages are dizzying. Girls are served up un-natural, refined, fat-producing foods while being told they must be thin to succeed. They are encouraged to succeed without being taught good manners where kindness comes first. They are being told that women can be independent yet being inundated with media images and examples of the aggressive ‘he’ man and the coy but seductive ‘girl-woman.’

Shift that message by demonstrating in your life that there is power in tenderness, and success in being loving; that being cool is reaching out to people who are different, and that being different is just being different—not right or wrong. And that to love and accept yourself just the way you are is the coolest thing of all!

There may not be a royal princess with a whirlwind life in your world, but I bet there are girls and women of all ages and stages of their lives who could use someone to reach out to them—and every “rite-of-passage” type occasion is a perfect opportunity. Look for ways to connect with young girls and teenagers to encourage their vision. Look for ways to connect with older women to encourage your vision, and their wisdom. Go dance your playful power dance and invite others to join in. ~

[This is the second of a three-part excerpt from my book-in-progress, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: How Princess Diana Rescued the Damsel in Distress. It's taken from a section titled, "Women Attending Women." Click on "Changing Times and Girl Power" in Labels list below for the other excerpts.]