THE RED MOON OR: THE FEMALE MENSTRUAL CYCLE (2)

For a long time it was literally embarrassing, awkward, unsuitable, or even taboo, to talk about the menstrual cycle which accompanies, and shapes, the lives of every woman for much of their lifetime.

However, this taboo is by no means restricted to older generations, or to societies with a very negative image of women. Many women of childbearing age in our own modern and open-minded society still avoid talking about the female cycle.

MENSTRUAL HYGIENE – AN OLD-FASHIONED WORD

Menstrual hygiene enabled at least some sort of mobility. Women’s everyday life with all its challenges cannot be imagined without it. The use of tampons makes us women almost forget that our bodies do extreme jobs during this period (as long as we do not suffer from menstrual problems). The first Tampons already existed 4000 years ago, hand-made from leaves and natural fibres. But, for about 70 years now, they have been industrially made of cotton.

However, there have been new discoveries in connection with the use of tampons which, to my mind, should be considered.

THE FOUR ENERGETIC PHASES OF THE FEMALE MENSTRUAL CYCLE

For a number of years many women have found themselves in a process of great changes which reopens a natural access to our female body and its energy cycles. We refer to ancient knowledge, and the wisdom of former generations of women, which was passed on to their daughters and granddaughters, by the old ones through myths and legends.

Our menstrual cycle goes through four phases and is closely connected with the cycle of the moon:

  • The first phase – from the end of the menstruation until ovulation – corresponds energetically with the girl/the virgin, and is described as dynamic, inspiring and generative (referring to reproduction).
  • The second phase – the time round ovulation – corresponds energetically with motherhood, meaning the power and ability of nourishing and preserving.
  • The third phase – the time from ovulation until menstruation – corresponds with the energies of ‘witches, magicians, seductresses or bad stepmothers’, because its energy refers to magic, sexuality or creativity.
  • The fourth phase – the time during menstruation – is connected with the energy of the wise old one who retreats from the external world into the internal one in order to live her creativity.

In my third blog from this series I will describe these four phases in more detail. If you are interested in this topic, I would like to recommend the book by Miranda Grey, ‘Red Moon. Understanding and using the creative, sexual and spiritual gifts of the menstrual cycle’.

Today’s post has been inspired by it.

Women

THE RED MOON OR: THE FEMALE MENSTRUAL CYCLE (1)

When we talked about ‘Auntie Mona from Arizona’ as young girls, this was the secret word for our menstruation. It totally got on our nerves, as we felt restricted in our freedom of movement. Many of us suffered from physical problems during this time.

MENSTRUATION: SACRED OR UNCLEAN?

What we did not know as girls (we were much too young and had not received any information from our mothers): the time of menstruation was recognized and respected in ancient cultures, and  women developed certain practices to handle these strong energies in a creative way.

However, patriarchal societies discredited menstruation, as they considered this feminine power as dangerous. So the feminine cycle, which was once sacred, became something unclean. These taboos concerning menstruation are not at all restricted to primitive societies or the past, but still exist in various religions and social classes.

CONSCIOUS EXPERIENCE

A spiritual awareness which affects an increasing number of women, causes a totally new view of the menstrual cycle. Therefore, the energies during the menstrual cycle should be consciously accepted and not suppressed. This means:

  • allowing mood fluctuations on the energetic and emotional level
  • giving way to the inner need to retreat
  • enjoying the development of a stronger feminine awareness
  • noticing the harmony between the cycle of the moon and one’s own cycle
  • etc.

In her book ‘Red Moon. Understanding and using the creative, sexual and spiritual gifts of the menstrual cycle’ Miranda Gray describes four different energies that are noticeable during the menstrual cycle. I will tell you more about it in my next blog.

WHAT DO YOU RESPOND TO?

Read my questions and consider the feelings they arouse. Maybe you feel like writing down your thoughts:

  • What were you shown and told as a girl about menstruation?
  • Can you remember your first menstruation?
  • How do you feel about your days of menstruation?
  • Do you suppress your menstruation or do you consciously experience it?
  • Do you envy men because they do not suffer from the strains of menstruation?
  • Can you feel different qualities of your energies during your menstrual cycle (ovulation, after ovulation, menstruation, time before the next ovulation)?

WITH THE POWER AND WISDOM OF OUR FEMININE PRIMORDIAL NATURE

It is time to look at our menstrual cycle with different eyes. Society has gradually turned towards masculine requirements over the last decades, and we women subordinated our needs to the demands of a society dominated by males. We have more or less locked our menstruation away because it was obstructive to our physical performance. But a growing feminine awareness  has arisen amongst us women.

As soon as we recognize our menstrual cycle as a basic feminine source of energy and feminine spiritual awareness, the menstrual cycle turns into an appreciated part of our lives which we do not want to miss out on.

Women