Is there more to gender equality than gender balance?
Is there more to gender equality than gender balance?
The theme for International Women’s Day 2019, “Balance for Better: driving gender balance and women’s rights across the world” was an attempt to respond to the continued unequal representation of women in many arenas, particularly those of power and wealth – clearly male dominated sectors. But is there more to gender equality and female empowerment than looking for gender balance in equal pay and the equal representation of male and female workers across the board?
‘Balancing for better’ is a possible response to a status quo that is openly biased against women. There is no doubt that such an agenda, aimed at making right part of today’s wrongs, can change for the better some valued aspects of numerous lives. As such, it is not hard to understand why so many embrace both its cause and the hopes of witnessing this turnaround coming true. Yet, on a deeper level, a ´better balance´ agenda is very limited in scope. The reason for this becomes clear once we understand that gender inequality, discrimination and upfront violence against women are mere symptoms of a world that has abdicated standards of decency and respect and has been spinning around this fact for a while. And although it may appear at first sight that (some) men are ahead in the game, the truth is that the game we are all playing is annihilating all of us.
When we consider the male-on-male violence, the wars, the drug abuse, the high incidence of male suicide and the men’s health issues we see the world over, it becomes apparent that in many respects if men are ‘winning’ the gender war, the prize is not serving them.
In many regards there is no one more imprisoned than an oppressor. There is no one more owned than he who attempts to own. Therefore, what of the force that controls the so-called oppressors?
The world we have created is adamant in its rejection of the fact that we are all naturally equal; a world that conveniently thinks in terms of winners and losers and that allocates men and women alongside those categories based on images of what being well-off is about instead of looking at true wellbeing.
In truth, we live in a world in which we all get to lose.
‘Balancing for better’ sounds good, but once we understand that it is about women catapulting into the pole position in a race for female empowerment that leads nowhere – one in which there cannot be ‘winners’ – we can appreciate that the true problem is not the proportion of men and women ‘leading the way’, but the rotten foundations we stand on as a collective.
No head counting ‘fair’ balance will ever change those ill foundations we stand on. It would only lead to a ‘nicer’ version of the ill. In other words, it would only make the ill more palatable for many, in the illusion that we would stand equal and therefore that we would be equally better off. By doing so, while it would help to deflate tensions, it would also turn our attention away from the foundations we stand on; something that is worth looking at, for the sake of us all.
The idea of bettering the gender balance is part of a consciousness that keeps us in separation from each other and denies that we all belong together and have to work together to rise above the mud we are all equally in.
When we align to this consciousness, we allow an arrogant intelligence to govern us and we are playing right into the dividing and sectioning forces that are reducing us from the whole – the oneness that we are – into separate parts (like men, women, black, white) that we then attribute value and importance to. In this we accept as a fact of life that people of certain gender, physical appearance and/or socio-economic status are less than others, that certain interests are more important than others and that we have the right to live imbalanced, unequal and void of oneness, but that we have to be tolerant and put effort into improving it. Hence, the same intelligence that separates offers simultaneously to subscribe to the highest forms of ‘Good’, seeing it as our duty to bring balance to an unjust world, making it a better place. But what if there is nothing to better, as both sides of the coin are made of the same?
The only way out from the ill state of being we have made our normal requires us to break away from the separative consciousness that imprisons us.
When we separate out aspects of anything and say one part is better than another, we ignore the whole – the oneness that universally underpins everything.
Hence, looking beyond the gender balancing scenario of right and wrongdoing, where women are required to harden up and become more men-like to gain a place of value in the world in a bid for female empowerment, it becomes clear that what is really regarded as less is a quality of expression that is associated with the female form – the Sacredness within that every movement shows and shares. This grace and delicacy are equally expressed in the male form through sensitivity and is neither weak nor pathetic, but holds little currency in the structures that define what is acceptable and valuable in the world at the current time.
The journey for a better balance teaches humanity to value the recognition, rewards and the power (which is in truth a harmful force when applied in this context) that the so-called masculine aspects of achieving, endless doing, consuming, discovering and creating bring to life above all else. It invites us all to devalue so-called feminine qualities that are of a more nurturing nature. However, by gendering the qualities we express in, we further embed the gender imbalance we are seeking to avoid as we make it about ‘gender’ and not firstly about the quality we express in and through, independently from the gender we represent.
Knowing yourself by your quality first
The importance of knowing the quality we hold within ourselves first and always moving from and with that quality.
Modern day Philosopher Serge Benhayon presents that all life is determined by a life-giving rhythm that is of an energetic nature. It is energy that makes us move in a certain way and Benhayon raises awareness about the fact that the energy we are using to move, express and live with is out of balance.
Following the teachings of the Ageless Wisdom he presents that what impulses men and women to express as males and females is determined by the harmonious Universal rhythm of repose (femaleness) and motion (maleness). When there is a harmonious interplay between both the repose and motion aspects of human life, true expression is able to flow unhindered. If we use too much motion, we get out of balance and when we are out of balance the original quality of motion distorts itself and becomes a drive (or its counterpart withdrawal) that then draws in excess male energy to justify and sustain itself.
According to Benhayon, we live in a world that uses 90% of male energy that is generated through the overuse – or better said, misuse – of motion. The consequence of this ‘out of rhythm’ movement is that our female and male expressions are considerably out of order.
Femaleness and maleness
Maleness and Femaleness are two important and misunderstood words that have nothing to do with gender.
In other words, we have parted from what was originally a harmonious interplay of repose and motion into an excess expression of the quality of maleness, and this excess motion-based expression drives us into unequal structures, behaviours and all the social and physical ills that come with it.
As long as we keep on believing that femaleness is a feminine quality owned solely by women, we keep supressing the real foundational quality that underpins true equality, irrespective of gender: the harmonious interplay of the two qualities of femaleness (repose) and maleness (motion).
Moreover, in truth, neither men nor women are living in the true expression of the quality of femaleness – a surrendering back to the Universal Order – and what we call ‘feminine’ qualities today have arisen out of the same 90% of male energy that provide us with the toxic pictures of over-sexualized bodies that have come to believe they have advanced in the light of modern life and progress, but in truth are owned and controlled by the very same images that have defined them to be to begin with.
Our lives are a simple reflection of the consciousness we have aligned to, hence controlled by ideals, beliefs and images of stereotypical male and female behaviours about how to live, who to be and what to do above any concerns regarding the quality of our expression. The absence and rejection of the wisdom and oneness offered by our quality of femaleness leaves men and women sick in their bodies, lives, and in the world. In this reductionism we all live subordinated to human functioning, endless ‘doing’ and structures that have arisen out of the way we are living and have become the only way we know human life to be.
Stated simply – we have lowered our human expression by the quality we have chosen to express in and no gender-based head counting exercise can ever change this. Gender equality as it is done today is ‘like treating cancer with a band-aid’. It’s an endless attempt to correct an ill growth of a behaviour without looking at what actually caused this ill way of being to occur in the first place.
If we don’t change how we live, we cannot change what we live. We have to take an honest look at what is setting the standard we are living in and by.
Hence, if we understand that an excess use of male energy is behind the state of the world that we know, what then are the possible consequences of addressing just a symptom and not the true cause of our ills and miseries? And, who guarantees us that addressing just the symptoms would not lead women to embrace what is truly wrong to begin with – the excess use of male energy?
And this exposes the real evil at play. Are we on a path of creating a cleaner surface without a real change of energy/quality, thereby manifesting the ill-being into our social structures for our future generations to embrace and live in the ignorance of our so-called human evolution? Is the modern woman who self-objectifies as her new gender identity truly less oppressed than the objectified and physically mutilated one? Or are we just falling from the barbaric times into the illusion of a more comfortable lifestyle that mutilates the body in a more sophisticated way, but equally empties it of its true qualities?
Will humanity look back on the current gender debate and see that we were trying, as Einstein said, to fix a problem by using the same consciousness that created it in the first place?
As always, we have a choice. We can stick to the mainstream image of men oppressing women – trying to fix, change and better the oppressive nature of an unequal social gender order – or we can follow what the Ageless Wisdom teachings have presented over eons; that gender inequality is the end result of the overuse of male energy derived from the consciousness we have adhered to for so long and that prevents both men and women from being in and holding their true expression.
Getting to be equal users of excess motion (male) energy does not and will not lead to achievement of true equality as it produces only bodies ‘out of order’, movements out of sync and expressions out of touch.
Gender balance is part of a widely extended consciousness humanity has bought into that would like us to think that it is about being well off and having great lives and that we can do so without looking and working hard on the truly hard issues that are behind our ills and woes. The struggle for gender equality is an uphill battle as the equality women have achieved today has been achieved in this 90% of motion, aka male energy. This is like becoming aware about the impact on our health of drinking coca-cola and then choosing to drink coca-cola light, zero or whatever marketing strategy has convinced us is making a healthier choice, believing we have chosen better, when in truth we are still using the same remedy – the same energy we used for the ill-being to occur. If we are honest, 50/50 without a lived quality is just equal numbers devoid of the harmony that truly returns us, not to balance, but to oneness.
We don’t need a ‘better gender balance’. We have to de-gender the debate about gender. By the same token, we have to bring the energetic truth into it. Only then will we understand that it is about ‘oneness’, as ‘oneness’, the harmonious interplay of the qualities of femaleness and maleness, is our connection to the Universal Wisdom that flows through us all constantly.
"Love is the expressing aspect we all respond to, not the gender that is expressing it."Serge Benhayon <Esoteric Teachings & Revelations Volume I, ed 1, p 553