This thing, being a woman.

By Petra Kalla

In my teens/early twenties I practiced a very vigorous dynamic form of yogasana, 2-3 hours, 6 days a week. Coupled with a perfectionist mind and a limited understanding and connection to my female body, my menstruation cycles got disrupted. This is not uncommonly heard of, and maybe not so strange when we look to the history of yoga mostly being shared, practiced and taught widely by men.
I was also beginning to feel confined within the strict system and regime I was following. Realizing something had to change, it has since been a never ending quest, full of wonders and aha-moments.

To start with, investigating a more slow, gentle and interoceptive hatha yoga practice and more meditation, my cycles returned and stabilized. Then practicing throughout pregnancy, breathing through the natural, uncomplicated birth of my son and the years (yes! years! It is still on, he turns 7 next month) of recovery following, opened a whole new chapter for me. I started to see my body for the feminine vessel it is, realizing how I had valued the qualities I had within that where more “masculine”, and also expecting my body-mind to be the same throughout the month, unconsciously trying to suppress and overcome its natural fluctuations.

I started to relate to what the polar opposites feminine-masculine represents beyond physical gender. Parts of my feminine side that was longing to be heard: creativity, intuition, nurturing, feeling, had in a way been sidelined by my reason, intellect and fear of not being good enough or being wrong.

Being a woman has through history meant being sidelined. Reading the wonderful book “Good night stories for rebel girls” with my son, reminds of all the women who did and do amazing things, changing our world, that we never hear about! (He loves the book btw!) Femininity has been equated with being less able, “the weaker sex”, and also at the same time fiercely powerful, so strong and dangerous that we had to be subdued, put in place by rules and norms that told us how we should be to not threaten the order.

AND yet, I see the world change. I see my female friends grow into full expressions of themselves, through yoga, vedanta, tantra, dance, meditation, and/or working on their purpose and hearts calling. I see support, wisdom, honoring of each other. I see women embracing their strength and power, creativity, sensuality, sexuality, and relating to what it is, this thing of Being A Woman, in their own way. By not valuing or de-valuing the opposite natural forces that we could coin masculine/feminine, can we become free to be who we are?

Interested in investigating this divine mystery of being a woman? Check out dear Sharada Devi’s and sisters work via
https://bewomanproject.info/

Next week we begin the Saraswati Module of the Be Woman Training. Can’t wait to share some jewels from yoga and tantra, that helps us to honor our menstrual cycles in our yoga practice and hearts, that supports pelvic floor health and builds vibrancy, sensuality and a sense of being whole. Embracing our female bodies never stagnant physiology is a game changer that has healed my relation to my bodily form and my shifting emotional landscape as well as my relation to my beloved. So thrilled to meet all you brave devi sisters!

Aim hreem om sarasvatyai namah
Hreem shreem om paramalaksmyai namah
Om dum durgayai namah

Dhanyo’ham Dhanyo’ham Dhanyo Dhanyaha Punah Punar Dhanyaha – I am blessed, I am blessed, blessed, blessed, again and again blessed!

This thing, being a woman.

By Petra Kalla

In my teens/early twenties I practiced a very vigorous dynamic form of yogasana, 2-3 hours, 6 days a week. Coupled with a perfectionist mind and a limited understanding and connection to my female body, my menstruation cycles got disrupted. This is not uncommonly heard of, and maybe not so strange when we look to the history of yoga mostly being shared, practiced and taught widely by men.
I was also beginning to feel confined within the strict system and regime I was following. Realizing something had to change, it has since been a never ending quest, full of wonders and aha-moments.

To start with, investigating a more slow, gentle and interoceptive hatha yoga practice and more meditation, my cycles returned and stabilized. Then practicing throughout pregnancy, breathing through the natural, uncomplicated birth of my son and the years (yes! years! It is still on, he turns 7 next month) of recovery following, opened a whole new chapter for me. I started to see my body for the feminine vessel it is, realizing how I had valued the qualities I had within that where more “masculine”, and also expecting my body-mind to be the same throughout the month, unconsciously trying to suppress and overcome its natural fluctuations.

I started to relate to what the polar opposites feminine-masculine represents beyond physical gender. Parts of my feminine side that was longing to be heard: creativity, intuition, nurturing, feeling, had in a way been sidelined by my reason, intellect and fear of not being good enough or being wrong.

Being a woman has through history meant being sidelined. Reading the wonderful book “Good night stories for rebel girls” with my son, reminds of all the women who did and do amazing things, changing our world, that we never hear about! (He loves the book btw!) Femininity has been equated with being less able, “the weaker sex”, and also at the same time fiercely powerful, so strong and dangerous that we had to be subdued, put in place by rules and norms that told us how we should be to not threaten the order.

AND yet, I see the world change. I see my female friends grow into full expressions of themselves, through yoga, vedanta, tantra, dance, meditation, and/or working on their purpose and hearts calling. I see support, wisdom, honoring of each other. I see women embracing their strength and power, creativity, sensuality, sexuality, and relating to what it is, this thing of Being A Woman, in their own way. By not valuing or de-valuing the opposite natural forces that we could coin masculine/feminine, can we become free to be who we are?

Interested in investigating this divine mystery of being a woman? Check out dear Sharada Devi’s and sisters work via
https://bewomanproject.info/

Next week we begin the Saraswati Module of the Be Woman Training. Can’t wait to share some jewels from yoga and tantra, that helps us to honor our menstrual cycles in our yoga practice and hearts, that supports pelvic floor health and builds vibrancy, sensuality and a sense of being whole. Embracing our female bodies never stagnant physiology is a game changer that has healed my relation to my bodily form and my shifting emotional landscape as well as my relation to my beloved. So thrilled to meet all you brave devi sisters!

Aim hreem om sarasvatyai namah
Hreem shreem om paramalaksmyai namah
Om dum durgayai namah

Dhanyo’ham Dhanyo’ham Dhanyo Dhanyaha Punah Punar Dhanyaha – I am blessed, I am blessed, blessed, blessed, again and again blessed!