13 May 2012
THE WOMEN IN OUR LIVES
Today is Mother's Day in the U.S. ~ an annual holiday recognizing "mothers, motherhood, and maternal bonds in general, as well as the positive contributions they make to society." Most of us have abiding warm and tender feelings toward our mothers, even in dysfunctional families. Especially as we become older, have children of our own, and then grandchildren, we appreciate what our own parents went through to raise us.
Today I'd like to broaden the scope of the celebration to include all women (whether or not they had children) who have contributed to the history of the world's cultures, ancient and modern. On the website Women of History there is a menu tab labeled Notable Women, with a long list of categories in which woman have played critical roles ~ from monarchs to warriors, artists to mathematicians, writers to judges.
Given that in most cultures, women have be subjugated to a status not equal to men, imagine how many more accomplishments could be listed if men had accepted women as their peers all along. My hunch is that a more androgynous world would be a kinder, more tolerant place ~ competition would be moderated by cooperation, analysis would be enhanced by intuition, stoic strength would be balanced by openly expressed emotions. What are now stereotypical traits of masculinity and femininity would simply become available to all, unconstrained by rigid social standards. To each his/her own blend.
Perhaps someday. For now, a toast to mothers everywhere. Salud.