Every once in a while something that seems to illustrate the current astrology perfectly gets written about on Planet Waves, and then a little more information about it comes to light or a better example surfaces, or both. Such is the case with the One Billion Rising example I used in today’s Daily Astrology post below. It has some problems.
The idea of one billion women (and men) dancing around the world all at once is still a fantastic image of collectively raising the vibration. But Eve Ensler and her V-Day foundation are problematic, and in a sense, what they’ve come to be about runs counter to the astrology’s message to ‘stand out’.
For one, check out the Wiki page about feminist criticism of The Vagina Monologues, which includes this passage:
The Vagina Monologues has been criticized by a number of people in the pro-sex feminist, gender egalitarian, and individualist feminist movements. Harriet Lerner, renowned in the field of women’s psychology, points out the “psychic genital mutilation” embedded in the play’s title, which ignores the clitoris and labia, and should more accurately be called “The Vulva Monologues.” Pro-sex feminist Betty Dodson, author of several books about female sexuality, saw the play as having a negative and restrictive view of sexuality and an anti-male bias. She called the play “a blast of hatred at men and heterosexuality.” Individualist feminist Wendy McElroy agreed, stating that the play “equates men with ‘the enemy’ and heterosexual love with violence.”
In other words, The Vagina Monologues and the V-Day Foundation that was built on its success essentially perpetuate violence despite claiming to be against violence. They do so in part by putting forth a viewpoint that ‘men are violent’ while ignoring male victims of sexual violence (consider the abuses by the Catholic Church prompting Pope Benedict XVI’s resignation announced today, or the circumcision of baby boys). And unfortunately, The V-Day Foundation is becoming a form of corporate exploitation of violence under the guise of an anti-violence message, according to some critics.
Now, about the astrology: given how unassailable The Vagina Monologues has become (critics of productions on college campuses often find themselves shunned at best, fired at worst; it is very difficult to critique Ensler and The V-Day Foundation without being labeled a misogynist), does joining One Billion Rising actually constitute ‘standing out’? Or is it actually an example of conformity by women?
I’m not suggesting that people should not join in the event — I still think that millions of women dancing worldwide is a wonderful thing. But it’s worth asking whether conforming to an essentially corporate endeavor built on an anti-male, anti-heterosexual-sex agenda is truly daring or creative.
As one of our commenters noted under the Daily Astrology post, “a Pope who has been very criticized for his ‘old’ views just did an extremely ‘modern’ action.” In a bizarre twist, we’re seeing a Catholic Pope ‘stand out’, apparently in relation to the rape of little boys by Catholic priests: sexual violence toward young men. I’m not praising Benedict XVI per se since I don’t have all the facts yet, and Eric will have more to say about the Pope’s decision and the astrology in tonight’s Daily Astrology and also in tomorrow’s Planet Waves FM. But it is worth noting how striking the move is.
It’s also worth noting where you truly stand on the issue of healing both halves of the perpetuated divide between genders when it comes to sexual violence. It’s worth considering how you can truly stand out. Just how creative you can get with something as simple as a camera or a dance or a poem or set of paints right now? What do you have to say?