~Martha S. Mejia
“…be attentive to what is arising within you, and place that above everything else…What is happening in your innermost self is worthy of your entire love; somehow you must find a way to work at it.
~Rainer Maria Rilke
…Innermost self…worthy of your entire love…
Empowerment. Ultimately we are the only ones who can give ourselves permission to love, “what is rising within us,” above everything else. How many among us are able to grant ourselves that? I was born into a culture that revers ideals that represent the opposite of what Rilke encourages; self-sacrifice & martyrdom are fed to us, especially to females from the time of conception.
We are guided and prized along a path of continuous service. Service to our parents, our siblings, our faith. All needs, wants, desires, that rise within us are set aside to attend to the others: warm your father’s and brother’s tortillas; wash their dishes; do their laundry; make their beds; sweep the floors; mop…an endless circular list of chores. The older attend to the younger, females to males, younger to elderly.
We are encouraged to yearn for the day we will be the zero to the right of a man that will choose us based on our virginal worth. A silent partner that will give him courage, strength, and value. To raise our children in line with the values we have been raised with.
We have, many of us, been raised to distrust what may ever happen in our “innermost self.” We are provided with stories of fallen women, social discards, continuing examples of what could happen to us.
And then there are those among us who–so loved, were they, for their uniqueness by their mothers, fathers, a “strange” aunt or grandparent–were allowed, and who allowed themselves to escape to their innermost selves!