Around 12,000 years back, when agricultural societies started to form, women were honoured and revered. In ancient India, women were considered superior to men. What happened to this world? Early religions contained both male and female gods and goddesses.
The Goddess of Fertility was stronger than the God of the Sky. It was the Earth-goddess, Gaia, who gave birth to all of the Gods, after all. When monotheism, the belief in one God, was introduced, the female began to lose her reign. As more and more pagan religions were suppressed, women were reduced to an inferior position. Masculine rulers usurped female power in the societies they conquered, and they absorbed and twisted the female in their own beliefs.
As time passes, goddesses became saints and were reinvented as nuns. The Goddess/Mother figure started to vanish from view, and the feminine principle was silenced. The Christian trinity, which had previously been represented by Maiden, Mother, and Crone, each representing a point in the female life cycle, was replaced with a male deity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Today’s corporations, religious institutions, political organizations and educational systems were created tens of thousands of years ago around this manly structure. They function as hierarchies with a male leader on top, exactly like the Christian trinity. These standard structures appreciate a logical, textual, aggressive, and analytical perspective. This approach is thought of as powerful and necessary for survival. The female strategy – less logical and more intuitive, less analytical and more emotional, less textual and more decorative, less aggressive and more cooperative – is considered less essential and is therefore devalued.
Today, not much has changed. Men continue to run the world. According to some 2009 study by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, women occupied only 37 percent of management functions in the boardroom, and more girls currently work in low-level manager positions than in senior ones. A recent report from the Conference Board of Canada states that guys are currently more than two times as likely to hold a senior executive position than girls.
A report from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives says women make up just 25 percent of provincial and territorial legislatures and they lag even further behind in the private sector with only 14.5% of seats on corporate boards. Only one of Canada’s top 100 CEOs is a girl. Women bring many outstanding qualities into the leadership role – confidence, vision, a well-developed awareness of work/life balance, amazing education, a feeling of giving to others, a nurturing soul, compassion, compassion and kindness.
In a world gone mad, where we respect competition, status, power, and control (all manly qualities), we urgently need those feminine qualities. If we wish to save the planet before we destroy ourselves, we will need to flood our associations with female leaders. When we combine the rational masculine with the empathic female, we gain a balanced wisdom. We want both the masculine and the female, the yin and the yang, to be able to restore equilibrium and wisdom to our planet. The old man ways of controlling the world, which worked well for us for several centuries, are no longer functioning. Our planet is in disarray. The female, viewed as a luxury in our everyday world, is now crucial for our survival.