November 2013

* marion woodman

"Appearances are a glimpse of the unseen."


I lost all sense of being able to control my own life, because I got into an addiction, an eating disorder, anorexia. An addiction to perfection.

I would say that this addiction was the seed. I would never had gone to Zurick if I hadn't been desperate. It didn't take courage to give up everything and go to the Jungian institute. I would never have gone if I was able to get any control over the situation that I was in, because my body was breaking down. There was an imbalance in the masculine and feminine energies.

I use the word masculine and feminine to describe two energies. I do not make masculine synonymous with patriarchal. For me, patriarchal has become a parody of masculinity. It is a control issue. People who are patriarchal want control over other people, control over their own body (which will create the addiction) or power over nature. Everything is in terms of power. That's patriarchal. That is not masculine.

What I'm looking for in a dream is the balance between these two energies, masculine and feminine. And if that energy balance is out, then the personality is moving toward sickness.

I would see the feminine qualities as process, instead of product. Presence, being present. Here and now. Not thinking about the future, not thinking about the past. But being here.

Recognizing the rightness of something, because it resonates in the body. To the point where you get gooseflesh.

The real masculine? Discrimination. Discernment. Having a goal and moving toward that goal.

Honoring the feminine. Cherishing the feminine. Working in harmony with it. Creative. Immense creative energy, which works with the feminine (creativity as process).

It's essential that both sides are working together for new life.

(Marion Woodman)


The cactus represents Truth.
It protects against,
and pricks what
approaches it unconsciously.
But when there is no
difference between 'you' and 'it',
you know its secret water source.

Marg Olafsdottir


"The little girl climbed up, took a deep breath and jumped directly on to the wall, which collapsed. The whole group laughed but our heroine was not sure how she should react and looked to me for help.

Suddenly I remembered everything I had heard about "learned helplessness of girls" and how they give up every time they fail. I thought of my own experience of not feeling good enough no matter how hard we try, until at last we stop trying, lose our confidence and stop taking risks...That is how we are kept in the old role of passivity and stopped from trying new things.

That little girl had found the perfect way. We have to train away the old fear of mistakes that holds us back. I gave the girls exactly this speech though in different words.

This story highlights a problem with this approach. If a girl takes risk and fails, she may end up being more risk-averse, not less. Olafsdottir acknowledges this hazard. "The feeling of weakness and inability and the tendency towards low self esteem are so integrated into girls thinking, that this training can be counter productive if we do not know exactly what we are doing."

Start with something the girls know they can do, then gradually let them build up that wall, stretch their abilities to the limit. Don't throw the mouse in the bathtub until it's had plenty of experience climbing the little trees and squiggling through the tunnels. And when the girls fail and they fall, you have to be there to catch them, dust them off, encourage them to try again.

It's also important for other girls to be supportive. That's one reason why she insists on a girls-only classroom for her "dare-training." The sexes not only monopolize space, objects, and roles, they also constantly monopolize particular behavior and qualities. Children always gravitate toward familiar actions and roles.

In a class with both boys and girls, the boys take over the equipment and the play ground. The boys take over any activity that involves action, motion and noise. By insisting on a girls only classroom for dare training, Olafsdottir makes it easier for girls to take risks without fear of the boys making fun of them or belittling their achievements."

(from Why Gender Matters, by Leonard Sax)

Camille Paglia


"Creativity is in fact flourishing untrammeled in the applied arts, above all industrial design. Over the past 20 years, I have noticed that the most flexible, dynamic, inquisitive minds among my students have been industrial design majors. Industrial designers are bracingly free of ideology and cant. The industrial designer is trained to be a clear-eyed observer of the commercial world-which, like it or not, is modern reality.

Capitalism has its weaknesses. But it is capitalism that ended the stranglehold of the hereditary aristocracies, raised the standard of living for most of the world and enabled the emancipation of women. The routine defamation of capitalism by armchair leftists in academe and the mainstream media has cut young artists and thinkers off from the authentic cultural energies of our time.

Over the past century, industrial design has steadily gained on the fine arts and has now surpassed them in cultural impact. In the age of travel and speed that began just before World War I, machines became smaller and sleeker. Streamlining, developed for race cars, trains, airplanes and ocean liners, was extended in the 1920s to appliances like vacuum cleaners and washing machines. The smooth white towers of electric refrigerators (replacing clunky iceboxes) embodied the elegant new minimalism."

"Form ever follows function," said Louis Sullivan, the visionary Chicago architect who was a forefather of the Bauhaus. That maxim was a rubric for the boom in stylish interior d├ęcor, office machines and electronics following World War II: Olivetti typewriters, hi-fi amplifiers, portable transistor radios, space-age TVs, baby-blue Princess telephones. With the digital revolution came miniaturization. The Apple desktop computer bore no resemblance to the gigantic mainframes that once took up whole rooms. Hand-held cellphones became pocket-size.

Young people today are avidly immersed in this hyper-technological environment, where their primary aesthetic experiences are derived from beautifully engineered industrial design. Personalized hand-held devices are their letters, diaries, telephones and newspapers, as well as their round-the-clock conduits for music, videos and movies. But there is no spiritual dimension to an iPhone, as there is to great works of art.

(Wall Street Journal)