Wednesday, 16 May 2007

Shiraz said:

I have realised that I have missed some comments from Papillon's blog. I don't always notice them if they appear several days after the original post. I noticed this one which I thought worth a post of its own. Shiraz, the commenter, didn't leave a link.

Dear Papillon

What a coincidence that the question you ask here is exactly the question of the year for me! In fact, I haven’t been circumcised, but the question affects me personally because, as a result of the environment in which I was born (Moslem, not fundamental but practising) I have always felt circumcised in my head.

Although my family is very “modern” as far as the status of women is concerned at work for example, I have been expressly forbidden from being too close to men, and to avoid having these problems I prevented my femininity from blossoming freely, I succeeded in forgetting I had a body because it was of no use.

I believe that physical circumcision is the most extreme expression of the repression of women’s bodies, and I do not see how one can be feminine, accept yourself as a woman, if our environment refuses to let us enjoy our own bodies. In wanting to kill femininity, these societies only make themselves sick.

To answer your question, Papillon, it’s several years now that I have been following “body therapies” such as yoga, tai chi, chiropractic, to put myself back in touch with my body.

As for femininity itself, I’ve made some fascinating discoveries this year since being in England. I’ve discovered “pagan” communities, inheritors of Celtic traditions where, like all pre-monotheist civilisations, Woman is held in high esteem, and each woman is considered to be the image of the Goddess. I am not criticising monotheist religions, but since I rediscovered these traditions, I am immersing myself in all sorts of books which suggest “archetypes” which we can refer to as we develop ourselves as women., in effect, consider that there are the goddess-mother, the goddess-warrior, the goddess-priestess, and they are all WOMEN. I don’t intend becoming a pagan priestess, far from it, but I think that immersing yourself in this ancient wisdom allows you to build mental models, which are universal because everlasting, and which you don’t necessarily find within your family.

So, it was very long, but I hope it makes sense!! Thank you for your blog, and I will be thinking of you very, very much on 16 May!

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