Relinquishing the Patriarchy

ambLast year, Detroit-based author and activist adrienne maree brown poured out an epic post on patriarchy. The entire post is required reading for men on the radical journey. This is her conclusion, a list of 14 practices.

the good news is, there are practices that work. here are steps i guarantee will help you to relinquish patriarchy.

1. recognize that as a man, you are a part of patriarchy. even if you have made some effort to break out of it, the system/insanity of patriarchy is still there for you to fall back into under pressure or duress.

2. be particularly vigilant about your masculinity growing toxic in your 30-50s age range. those are the years for many of us where the weight of adulting gets real and feels too heavy, and the dreams we had for our lives may not be coming true – hence the pattern of midlife crises. this is when men can become strangers to the women who trust them. yes, change is constant, and we all deserve space to change. none of us deserve a pass to change in ways that make us more harmful to those with less systemic power than we have, especially not those who have carried us. Continue reading “Relinquishing the Patriarchy”

Imagination Battle

index“We are in an imagination battle.

Trayvon Martin and Mike Brown and Renisha McBride and so many others are dead because, in some white imagination, they were dangerous. And that imagination is so respected that those who kill, based on an imagined, radicalized fear of Black people, are rarely held accountable.

Imagination has people thinking they can go from being poor to a millionaire as part of a shared American dream. Imagination turns Brown bombers into terrorists and white bombers into mentally ill victims. Imagination gives us borders, gives us superiority, gives us race as an indicator of ability. I often feel I am trapped inside someone else’s capability. I often feel I am trapped inside someone’ else’s imagination, and I must engage my own imagination in order to break free.”
― Adrienne Maree Brown, Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds

relinquishing the patriarchy

3599EC8E-44F3-4B67-8C7A-4B49B90EA906-924x1024By adrienne maree brown, re-posted from her website.

dear men.

this is mostly a note to straight, cis men; but also includes trans men, queer men, and all who participate in masculinity – if you see yourself in these words, this is a love note to you.

patriarchy (the system of society/government in which men hold the power and women are excluded from it) is collapsing, and it’s time for you, too, to give it up, to get yourself out.

it won’t be easy.

i don’t believe total revolution or liberation happens in one generation, but i know from my own life and many lives i have witnessed and accompanied, that it is absolutely possible in your lifetime, in a generation, to personally relinquish an unjust ideology, to begin to practice a more evolved way of being.
Continue reading “relinquishing the patriarchy”

Abolition Spell (summer solstice)

015D4709-872B-4C04-8011-54999221350C-300x300.jpegBy adrienne maree brown. Re-shared from her blog.

the other small thing i can offer is an abolition spell, for siwatu, for the babies at the border, for their families, for all political prisoners, for all nonviolent offenders, for all those who have caused harm and are not being helped to find a different way.

all that is light
break bars between teeth
grind bricks down to dust
explode a sunscale life force
in each direction
until the cages shed like dead skin Continue reading “Abolition Spell (summer solstice)”

The Ties that Bind: The Integrity of Penitence, on the 50th Anniversary of the Massacre at My Lai

my-lai-1024x683By Ken Sehested

Concealment makes the soul a swamp. Confession is how you drain it.

—Charles M. Blow

Except in a few traditional religious settings, penitence is a relatively unknown word. While its more common synonyms—confession, apology, contrition, and repentance—are standard parts of many church liturgies, the images they convey have generally fallen out of favor. There are good reasons why this is so. The primary definition of penance is “voluntary self-punishment inflicted as an outward expression of repentance for having done wrong.” A web search for penance reveals more than a few pictures of people whipping themselves. Continue reading “The Ties that Bind: The Integrity of Penitence, on the 50th Anniversary of the Massacre at My Lai”

we are living in impossible times

indexwe are living in impossible times. if it were fiction it would be critiqued as hyperbolic. if it were nightmares we would never sleep.

we are living in times created by our own species. I can’t remember the last time my tears weren’t man-made.

it feels like everything is broken. we must, each of us, fix our attention on the nearest wound, conjure within us the smallest parts of ourselves that are still whole, and be healers. heal with words and prayer and energy, heal with money, clean water, time and action.

there’s enough destruction. there’s enough nothingness swallowing the living world. don’t add to it. there’s enough.our visions are ropes through the devastation. look further ahead, like our ancestors did, look further. extend, hold on, pull, evolve.

Imagination

BrownFrom adrienne maree brown‘s brilliant new book Emergent Strategy (2017):

It is so important that we fight for the future, get into the game, get dirty, get experimental.  How do we create and proliferate a compelling vision of economies and ecologies that center humans and the natural world over the accumulation of material?

We embody.  We learn.  We release the idea of failure, because it’s all data.

But first we imagine.

We are in an imagination battle. Continue reading “Imagination”

This is the time

timwe have been preparing for this time,
we were called, told only to be ready,
and we have been practicing and connecting.

she said that this is not a time for self-doubt and trying to please everyone,
for withholding any gifts, for wasting any time delaying your life’s work.

this is no time for ego, drop into the place where your work becomes divine.
this is the time to unleash all our healer clarity, we are all needed.
-adrienne maree brown