Liminal Luminous

a wandering, wondering space of devotion, creativity and freedom.
Disability/Chronic Illness/Mental health Living well Spirituality

Feminine energy vs masculine

I have started to feel well again, not least because of my successful time at the Greenbelt Festival. And so, I decided that now is the time to start getting on and losing the weight I have accumulated and getting fit and strong again.

So I started running and booked myself in with a personal trainer. Three sessions into my running (and I am following the NHS Couch to 5K plan, so it is ridiculously gentle, when you consider a few years ago I was about to run a marathon) I’ve lost pretty much two whole days to fatigue. I’ve not had that for ages, in fact I haven’t even needed the level of napping that was standard for a while now.

Oh and my ankles and knees were really hurting.

When will I learn? I don’t have a condition that is going to go away, it is built in at a genetic level, yes I have vastly improved but that is because I have been doing a gradual programme of walking, swimming and yoga to build back up again.

I think there is a simple explanation behind this.

Running has a very masculine energy – you can go further and faster and I can get medals by entering into races of certain distances. I am someone who likes structure, having something concerte to aim towards, and running is an excellent way to do this. There isn’t anything in yoga, yes I can train as a teacher, but it is an awful lot of money when I’m not sure I want to actually teach. There isn’t grades like there are in music or martial arts. Same with walking. Swimming doesn’t have the same level of races that running does, unless you are extremely good at it.

I think there has been a secret part of me which has been scorning swimming, walking, yoga and now dance, as rather soft pursuits, something that I have only been doing until I can get back to the gym, running and training until I throw up or pass out. This constant pushing and striving is exactly what caused my collapse in the first place, why would I want to go back there?

I need to learn to embrace a softer, feminine energy, rather than constantly harking back to when I was working in a ‘bigger, stronger, best’ mode from before. On an intellectual level I absolutely believe that working in a more feminine way is the right thing to do, we don’t have to be pretend men in order to be successful, we can redefine success in our own way. And yet, somehow that doesn’t always translate into practice. there is still part of me that is waiting until I can go back to my old ways.

One day I will learn, but in the meantime I will continue to practice, little by little, honouring the divine feminine within and without me.

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