“The deepest experience of the creator is feminine, for it is the experience of receiving and bearing.” — Rainer Maria Rilke
- There are two parallel planes of human evolution, Darwinian or Physical Evolution and Emotional or Consciousness evolution.
- The rate of change in materialism and technology over the last 75 years has been exponential and although Physical Evolution has managed to progress, the rate of Emotional Evolution is much slower, and therefore is significantly lagging, leading to a substantial imbalance between these two forms of human progression.
- Emotional Evolution is deeply rooted in a combination of masculine and feminine energies. An appropriate balance between these two forms of consciousness is necessary to deal with the social challenges currently faced by humanity.
- It is posited that a much higher level of feminine energy is required to create the kind of Inspired Leaders who could address effectively the significant global challenges before us, i.e., e.g., climate change, economic volatility, energy insecurity, social injustice, terrorism, and more.
Whether you consult the psychology, evolution or genetics literature, it becomes quite clear that each of us, male and female alike, carries with us from birth an intimate combination of masculine and feminine energies. Our masculine traits are associated with logic, a penchant for action, mathematical reasoning and scientific thinking; while our feminine energy brings forth creativity, compassion, nurturing and intuition. Both can be quite strong, and both are fundamental to human development and effective functioning. The specific level or balance between these two energies depends very much on the nature of the outside world in which we must function. For example, in prehistoric times, a greater level of masculine energy was required to hunt, protect and survive; however, it was feminine energy that nurtured and cared for children and family members.
There has been an imbalance of these energies within us for several millennia, although this imbalance began to diminish and move toward a more favorable equilibrium over time. However, evolution is a slow process. The problem that modern society currently faces is that over the last 75 years, material and technological changes have occurred so rapidly that any progress toward the required evolutionary balance between our physical and emotional development has been left far behind. We simply have not been able to keep up and make the emotional progress necessary to deal with the technological developments that have occurred. Therefore, many of us are stuck in a mire of materialism that is having and will continue to have increasingly negative consequences for our wellbeing.
One way to look at this predicament in simple terms is to consider human evolution as occurring on two planes, simultaneously, the physical plane as described by Darwin, and the consciousness plane as promulgated by a number of modern psychologists and philosophers. The key question to address at any one point in time is, “Are these two evolutionary planes in sufficient balance to meet our needs as a global society?” I feel that we are moving in the right direction for balance, but we have a great distance to go. Material and technological developments over the last century have occurred so rapidly that these two planes of evolution have not been able to seek the appropriate equilibrium point for our society to continue to advance physically, technologically and consciously without major upheavals. An optimal meshing of male and female energies is at the root of this issue.
Those who create, embrace, support and propagate the current model that defines “success” in our society are on a path that cannot deal with the major challenges before us as a global community. As discussed in my last column, we seem to be stuck within a model that maintains that our degree of success is defined by our level of financial and material wealth and our position of power. This is the result of a high contribution of male energy in the evolutionary process. Without the third leg of the proverbial stool which I maintain is service, the element of our human psyche that is based on compassion, understanding and intuition, we will never create leaders who can inspire us to work as a global team to address such big issues as climate change, energy insecurity, social injustice and terrorism. We need a more effective balance between feminine and masculine energies. At the risk of redundancy, and especially if you have not read this in my last column, allow me to share a story that I believe helps make the point.
Following our wedding on July 9, 2003 in Montecito, California, my wife Inez and I decided to travel further west to the big island of Hawaii for our honeymoon. After some rest, relaxation and experiencing a number of tourist attractions, a good friend who lives on the island introduced us to Hale Makua [pronounced “ha-lay ma-koo-a”], a Kahuna and spiritual teacher to the people of the south-sea islands. Our friend felt that Hale would be an excellent guide to the true Hawaiian culture and a knowledgeable source of the history of the islands.
Hale was a most unusual person. I say “was” because sadly he died a year after we met him in an automobile accident. He was born in the Hawaiian Islands, and although he towered over my 6 foot 4 inch [193 cm] frame and carried at least 300 pounds [13 kg] of body weight, he was as gentle as a lamb. As a U.S. citizen at the “right” age in the 1960s, he was drafted into the U.S. army and served as a nurse during the Viet Nam War. He clearly had “been around the block,” and yet had the demeanor, insight and stoicism of a monk.
Inez and I had wonderful discussions with Hale and began to grasp the beautiful culture and ancestry of these islanders. One afternoon, he drove us to the top of a local mountain where he showed us a special place that Hawaiians consider sacred, and allegedly it sits on a “vortex of spiritual energy.” Although not knowledgeable about “vortices of spiritual energy,” the feeling that Inez and I had at this sacred place was indescribably pleasant and serene. We didn’t want to leave. But, eventually we found our way to a teahouse on the mountain and continued our discussion of the history and culture of the Hawaiian Islands. Soon we found our discourse penetrating more and more into the challenges of our modern society—climate change, energy insecurity, nuclear arms, economic volatility, social injustice, terrorism and more.
At this point, I asked Hale “Is their one thing that would have a major positive impact on these seemingly impossible challenges.” His response was an immediate, “Yes!” “And what might that be,” I inquired with great interest. “When women have a greater leadership role in deciding our future,” was Hale’s response. “Well that’s great, Hale, but why is that the case?” He responded, “You know, we Hawaiians believe that when children are born, all of them, male and female alike have a strong energetic innate connection between their heart and their mind. However, in our modern society, most boys, as they mature, are taught to sever that link.” He elaborated, “Men don’t cry; men are providers and protectors; men work and strive, while women mother children; men calculate and analyze, while women intuit, and the list goes on.”
“However,” cautioned Hale, “The challenges before humanity at this point in our history, require leaders who have a strong connection between the heart and the mind, otherwise there will be catastrophic consequences. So, either women must have more to say about our future, or men must reestablish their heart-mind connection. And actually from a practical and non-prejudicial point of view, we need both of these things to happen.” In a word, what Hale is saying here is that there must be a better balance of male and feminine energies. And specifically, his point is that we currently need much more feminine energy.
I have since thought long and hard about Hale Makua and his advice to get humanity on a new path; one that is safe, just, healthy and sustainable. My thinking has been especially catalyzed by many of the unfortunate atrocities we have experienced over the last decade: The Twin Towers devastation, the financial crisis, war and terrorism in the Middle East, our inability to come to grips with the reality of climate change, and much more. I firmly believe that several of the key elements of Inspired Leadership are what Hale Makua had in mind. An Inspired Leader provides service to all of his or her stakeholders. The key attributes of such a leader are compassion, fairness, intuition, passion, a big dream for all peoples, and the ability to communicate directly, clearly and caringly. Maybe that’s what Feminine Energy is all about.
Make no mistake; Inspired Leaders also use their masculine energies when they are called for. He or she often assures that complex situations are properly analyzed, decides and directs; and applies the power of science, mathematics and technology to challenging problems. The key is to switch between feminine and masculine energies with agility when necessary.
So, to my way of thinking, and drawing on the wisdom of Hale Makua, I don’t necessarily believe we have to replace many of our leaders in government and business with female leaders, although for sure we are nowhere near what many would consider an appropriate gender balance of highly-skilled leaders. I think we need to be sure that our leaders, men and women alike, have a better balance of feminine and masculine energies; and it would seem that we currently are significantly lacking in an effective level of the former.
There is a means to meet this challenge. In the short run, we must elect government and corporate leaders who have demonstrated a reasonable balance between these energies, and in long run, we must be sure that parents and educational leaders understand that inculcating this sense of balance in our children from the very earliest age could have a major positive impact on the future of humanity.
Sat, Chit, Ananda.
Enjoy your journey!
About the Author
James A. Cusumano is Chairman and Owner of Chateau Mcely (www.ChateauMcely.Com), chosen in 2007 by the European Union as the only “Green” 5-star luxury hotel in Central and Eastern Europe and in 2008 by the World Travel Awards as The World’s Leading Green Hotel. It is home to Chateau Mcely Forum™ (www.ChateauMcelyForum.Com) which offers programs that teach the principles of Inspired Leadership. He is a former Research Director for Exxon, and subsequently founded two public companies in Silicon Valley, one in clean power generation, the other in pharmaceuticals manufacture via environmentally-benign, low-cost, catalytic technologies. While he was Chairman and CEO, the latter – Catalytica Pharmaceuticals, Inc. – grew in less than 5 years, to a $1 billion enterprise with 2,000 employees. He is coauthor of Freedom from Mid-East Oil, released in 2007 by World Business Academy Press (www.WorldBusiness.Org) and author of Cosmic Consciousness – A Journey to Well-being, Happiness and Success, published in English and Czech by Fortuna Libri, 2011. His new book, BALANCE: The Business—Life Connection was published in April 2013 by SelectBooks in New York City. It was published in Czech in October 2013 by Fortuna Libri.
Source: Leaders Magazine - www.leadersmagazine.cz