I think I can safely assume you are well aware that massive areas of virgin forest and jungle are cleared every day so huge, heartless, multinational corporations can do inane things like making short-term pastures for cattle destined for McDonald’s burgers; or, growing palms for palm oil, which is then added to food and, these days, is even used to make “ecologically sensible” bio-fuel; and, for many other short-sighted, senseless, and unsustainable purposes. I know a lot of people who are “spiritually” and/or ecologically inclined have a deep resistance, even a disdain, of ecologically destructive activities such as these. Clear felling of jungles and virgin forests is, for many of us, right up there on the list of “Things that are sadly destroying life on Earth,” along side other issues like the non-stop dumping of industrial and pharmaceutical waste into water ways, the privatisation of global water resources, and the huge (I mean MASSIVE) swirling island of plastics which cover a large proportion of the Pacific Ocean.
This article is about none of these issues, and yet the issue we are about to explore is very closely (in fact, intimately) related to those mentioned above. It’s related in terms of the level of thinking that sets these issues into motion within the collective human unconscious. This article is about something just as important, and yet far closer to home than you might be anticipating. What we are about it explore is of global proportions, and yet it is something every man and woman can change immediately, and effortlessly, without doing anything at all.
What I wish to convey initially emerged in my mind as a letter to my Sisters, to the many Women on this Earth. I’ve written a few such letters (posted elsewhere) over the years. Yet it didn’t take much contemplation to realise it is as much a letter to my Brothers, and perhaps even more so.
Every day tens of millions of women participate in the clear felling of the Earth. They perform this act not with huge chainsaws and bulldozers in the heart of the Amazon, but with a relatively fragile razor blade, typically in the shower or bathroom. The great majority of women I have met, seen, or in any way had any awareness of, choose to take part in this ritual for all of their post-pubescent life. Many of these women may not even know what their own body would look like (or feel like) were they to not engage in this act.
In this article I address The Bare Naked Earth.
If you’re male or female, consider for a moment why it is that most women shave their legs, their vulva (the pubic/genital area), and their armpits? Why do they feel so compelled to do this that for many women it doesn’t even cross their mind to question this life-long (sacrificial) ritual, let alone consider not doing it.
I am going to assume you’re not someone who is already free from the spell of believing women must shave. If you are, please adjust your reading of what follows accordingly.
In my observation males plays a significant part in what motivates most women to shave their bodies. Does the average male have such an unconscious obsession with prepubescent girls that he can’t bare to see the body of a mature woman in all its glory, beauty, and magnificence? If it’s not an obsession with the prepubescent female body that drives this behaviour in men, perhaps it’s simply his deep-seated fear of the empowered feminine? Rather than letting a girl grow into the full strength and power of her body as a women, does the average male instead prefer to pressure Woman into keeping an important aspect of her body in childlike state—bare and denuded?
A woman’s vulva is naturally covered in a healthy growth of pubic hair. This hair serves many functions. The simplest, and perhaps most obvious, is that her most sensitive, luscious, vulnerable, and (to most males) desirable body part is covered, protected, and hidden from plain sight and from the surrounding environment. At a subtler level a woman’s pubic hair plays an even more significant role. Body hair in general helps anchor prana or life-force into the flesh and, when not dissipated, into the bones. It allows for this life-force to accumulate more intensely over the surface of the body which has the effect of strengthening the body, particularly strengthening the protective Chi (energy, prana, life-force) that naturally permeates the skin and creates a buffer or padding of energy out beyond the surface of the skin.
A girl’s body starts to grow pubic hair over the vulva precisely when she starts shifting biologically and (ideally) psychologically into womanhood. It is at this time that Woman’s capacity to co-create with Man, and with Life itself, starts to emerge and eventually blossom. Her genital pubic hair serves to strengthen and protect this important and powerful region of the feminine body. It grounds the woman more fully into her first, second, and third chakras, resulting in a stronger and more stabilised experience of her feminine nature, and of her body in general. Once a female has the capacity to be sexually active it is important her life-force be anchored more strongly into the pubic area, and that once there it be protected. The new hair that oftentimes starts to grow on the legs of most females during and after puberty also serves to ground and strengthen her feminine presence.
The armpits are no exception. They too have a similar and equally important role to play in the life of a natural, healthy, and empowered Woman. The same can be said for the hair growing from the scalp, from the head. Why is it one of the first significant changes for men and women subscribed into the army is the shaving of their heads? The same goes for monks and nuns choosing to live in monasteries. In both situations the individual is required to give up their individuality and independence in order to follow an authority of some kind, whether that of an officer of higher rank, or from high in the heavens. A yogi I know once pointed out to me there was a period in the history of China where women were required to keep their fringe short, at a length that kept it over their foreheads, just above the eyebrows. The Chinese Emperor at the time understood that this would (energetically) help keep most women in a confused state, resulting in their disempowerment. I have not checked into the validity of this story, although I can say that I have noticed that a significant number of the women I have met with a fringe covering their forehead have, by my estimation, a particularly disempowered and oftentimes confused feeling about them.
It’s nearly 2010 and in many parts of the world woman are, for all intents and purposes, required and expected to shave their legs, their armpits, and these days even their vulva / genitals. I am of the opinion this keeps women disempowered; disconnected from their body; at war with their natural state (and thus with Nature); constantly entangled in trying to appease the judgement of the many men and women in their life; and, it plays a role in keeping many women perpetually out-of-touch with what it really feels like to be a whole and empowered Woman.
I can say from experience—vicariously, through that of my females partners—that women who wish to be empowered and free typically find it very liberating and deeply satisfying to break out of the endless war of shaving their body hair. Of course it helps greatly if their male partner is supportive of this transformation. Many men are not. Even as I write this I am contending with the images that emerge in my mind, images of women senselessly denuding themselves, and I feel such sadness. On numerous occasions it has brought me to tears. These are the same tears I shed when I see huge areas of virgin jungle and forest clear-cut for nothing more than a couple of years of corporate profits. The abuse humanity senselessly wreaks upon the Great Mother, our Earth, is exactly the same abuse men and women are wreaking upon hundreds of millions of females who feel they must keep their body “clean” shaved in order to be acceptable as a woman.
I know many males who find female body hair disgusting. I know males who consider women genitals, with its natural covering of hair, to be unattractive, sexually unappealing, and even dirty. These males consider a vulva that looks more akin to that of a prepubescent child to be unequivocally more “sexy”, attractive, and arousing. Somehow this strikes me as odd. Not “wrong” per say, for it is as it is. Just odd. Odd, in light of the fact the female body was perfectly designed to be appealing and attractive to males, in its natural state. Hair and all. Are most men today so deeply out of touch with what it means, and how it feels, to be an empowered and authentic embodiment of masculinity that they can’t embrace and love woman in her whole, natural state?
The oddness of the above-mentioned male desire for women to look more like young girls (rather than mature women), reminds me of a story I’ll share with you. I knew a woman who bought some farmland. It was a relatively large area of land, perhaps a few hundred acres. The land had been used for farming for many decades, and most recently (prior to her arrival there) was set up with high fences for farming deer. My friend had no interest in keeping animals in captivity, and therefore had no intention to keep the pastures clear (from regenerating native trees, etc.). She was planning to have all the 6ft high fences removed.
One day, whilst I was there on the land, a local bloke (a farmer from down the road) came to visit. My friend had asked him to take her to the paddocks high up on the hill to show her where the border of her property was. She had asked him to help because he had a big four-wheel drive farm vehicle, and he was familiar with the property because he knew the previous owner. At one point we were all standing in a paddock which was quite obviously in the very early stages of reverting back to being taken over by gorse and bramble, and it would eventually have native “bush” (as we call it in New Zealand), growing on it. With his big rubber boot he poked his foot at some gorse growing where we were standing. I could see he was reminiscing to a past time, and not without some obvious remorse.
“You know, when my forefathers came to this land more than 100 years ago, it was a mess. This whole valley was a mess, and they spent years cleaning it up. They cleaned this whole place up, real good, and ‘cos of that, we’ve been able to use it productively for farming till this day.” I listened intently as he continued sharing with us what his mind was pondering. “They cleaned this place up real good, and now you’re just letting it go to waste. It’s such a sad thing to see. The land is becoming a mess again. What a waste…”
What this farmer shared with us struck me as somewhat odd. Odd that the Earth, when covered in its natural native forest or bush is considered by someone at his level of thinking to be dirty, useless, and, in his eyes, undesirable. Just a waste of space. There is something about the oddness I felt in that situation, which I can’t help but associate with the oddness I feel at the attitude many males (“males”, because I can hardly consider them true Men) have towards the female body, and their desire for it to be shaved clean.
It is in light of all I have shared above, I am writing this letter to my Sisters, and to my Brothers. To the Men and Women of this world, or at least those who happen to read this article. My intention is to appeal to your natural sensibility. To invite you forward into your capacity to sense and to feel what is life-giving, and what is not. It is my wish that the little I have shared on this topic will indeed serve as food-for-thought. If you are one who participates in the denuding of the women in this world, perhaps now, or in the future, may you pause in a long enough moment of consideration to reassess what motivates your participation. It is also my wish that we each have no judgement towards ourselves with regards to any of this subject matter. We are always forgiven, moment-to-moment, for our unconsciousness, and Life itself always celebrates (cell-vibrates) when we step into greater awareness of what is real, and what is life-giving… free from lies and deception.
At least, that’s been my experience.
P.S. If a girl reaching puberty never shaved her relatively thin prepubescent body hair, would it in fact stay relatively thin? Does the shaving of it make it darker, thicker, and more plentiful if she allowed it to grow back? If that is the case, it is not sad that it is the misdirected desire to not have the apperance of being “hairy” that in fact results in a women looking more hairy than she would have, had she never shaved?