All patriarchal organizations are inclined to express and honor masculine traits. Religious organizations are no exception. We rarely hear about Jesus Christ’s feminine traits although he manifested them and spoke of their importance often. Masculine traits are, indeed, to be honored, but they are only one-half of the whole.
Jesus’s treatment of women was radical for its time when a Jewish woman had no rights and her identity was derived from her husband or father. Jesus stood for women to be treated with dignity and frequently scandalized the existing social and religious world by including them in social gatherings (which was forbidden), and openly traveling and teaching women, for which he was derided.
Jesus had mastery over his masculine and feminine powers: mercy with justice, tenderness with force, authority with tolerance and forgiveness.
Jesus of Nazareth extolled the importance feminine or compassionate values in the Beatitudes, a key part of the Sermon on the Mount: He blessed the humble, those who thirst for righteousness, the merciful, and the peacemakers.
The Feminine Principle is a concept that recognizes that “God” or “Source” ultimately is neither male nor female and is an essence beyond form or duality—an essence that is a balance and unification of masculine and feminine principles, a dynamic, complementary interdependence that pervades all life.
Unfortunately, viewing “God” only in the form of masculine metaphor and symbol has severely limited human potential and elevated masculine values over feminine values, causing imbalance in almost every aspect of human life. For thousands of years, the dominant religious belief systems have been patriarchal, sanctioning societal ethics that elevated “God” the Father above “God” the Mother and man over woman.
Women’s values concerning social justice and universal rights are appreciated and respected by men. Men and women should encourage this dialog and continue to engage in meaningful discussions regarding social justice in our everyday lives at home, at work and in our communities.
Women should embrace their feminine values and ideals with more certainty and assertiveness. Women need to reclaim their responsibilities as standard bearers for justice and compassion with pride and commitment. In recent times, women have developed and refined their masculine aspects at the expense of their feminine aspects, in order to be seen as “equal” to men. Now that we have successfully proven our abilities, it is time for us to acknowledge, respect, and honor our feminine attributes, ideals, and values and to bring them into the world with wisdom and passion.
Women are responsible for changing the vast inequities in place on the planet today. Only women’s ideals and values will influence the changes needed to address the hunger, poverty, and injustice that have existed under the patriarchal systems of the past and that continue today. Men and women need to regard women’s ideals and values as equal to men’s and not elevate one gender over the other. Together, men and women need to recognize the male and female aspects of each personality and encourage both men and women to cultivate the balance of their own masculine and feminine aspects.