Alternate Reading January 12, 2015Posted by FCM in meta, news you can use, pop culture.
Tags: mary daly, near term extinction, NTE, NTHE, sonia johnson
in light of recent discussions, in particular NTE stuff and the
likelihood absolute certainty of the catastrophic loss of human habitat due to male-caused global overpopulation and over male population, whenever it occurs, i am reminded that certain of us have described visions of our female future. in particular, i am re-membering mary daly and sonia johnson, although i am unable to access my books just now to look this up properly (if i am remembering it wrong, i am sure someone will tell me). as i recall, both women “saw” a female future (and a past) where women were free of the plague of global maleness, where we were/are finally, finally free to simply BE, without much if any do-ing, and without the constant threat of being raped and pillaged by men. ahhhh, that does sound nice.
specifically, what i am remembering is that these visions were of another dimension, where women were able (somehow?) to live without eating, drinking or performing any maintenance-type stuff at all — sonia johnson envisioned that women were free of any DO-ing whatsoever and that we literally lived on clean air and sunshine, and could fly. (!) at the time i first read her vision, i embraced this as a thought exercise where women were encouraged to imagine/experience effortlessness, and the freedom to just BE and in so imagining to realize and feel how much of our female lives and female selves are in fact spent DO-ing under conditions of
patriarchy female oppression, torture and slavery, especially doing for and doing because of others, namely, men. i found the exercise mind-expanding and helpful.
and as i recall, mary daly imagined women coming together in a place far away from men and maleness; maleness was no longer an issue for whatever happy happenstance (happy/stance) and women found each other and lounged about, enjoying each others company and sharing lore about the bizarre past where patriarchy reigned. daly wrote in the 1990s about this coming-together occurring in what would now — as we are currently in 2015 — be the rather near future. in this future, as i recall, women subsisted (largely? completely?) on lemonade and dog-licks. i dont remember exactly, but that was the gist — another plane of existence, in the not-so-distant future, that is as different from the one we currently inhabit as can be imagined, and then some. and we have everything we need, and nothing we dont, (because) the problem of men and maleness has been solved.
sonia johnson also imagined that women could change perspective at will to experience BE-ing a bird, or a wolf, or a tree.
so currently, in light of the issue of catastrophic climate change due to male-caused global overpopulation and over male population, i am considering dalys and johnsons visions of womens “female future” and i have to wonder just what it was these women were envisioning when they essentially saw women existing without bodies. get it? while it is a nice exercise to imagine not having to eat or drink or DO anything, the fact is that natural law applies, it applies now and it will continue to apply in the absence of patriarchy. and natural law dictates that women — as human animals — cannot, in fact, live on lemonade and dog-licks alone, and we also cannot fly. temporarily “trading” consciousness with birds and trees does not violate natural law as far as i am aware, so i will leave that one alone.
now, obviously i understand and agree that in general, we are free to en-vision whatever we want, or to describe whatever vision comes to us whatever the source (the source may not be “us” exactly, i say this as a creative person) and that it doesnt have to make sense, or be possible. in the case of johnson and dalys visions of our female future (and past) i previously understood these metaphysical (metaphysical = literally “beyond physics”) visions as fictional writing, or thought exercises, and i assumed that daly and johnson were imagining/describing a scenario/universe in which we (somehow) experienced these obviously metaphysical things simultaneously with being (BE-ing) very much alive. i understand and accept that this is the accepted interpretation of this writing, and also that daly and johnson likely intended to be read that way as well.
but i have to tell you. as of recently, i am really wondering: when they “saw” women in this vastly different state, where women are/were finally free of not only men and patriarchy but of everything, including all DO-ing and the limitations/requirements of physics (and bodies) what were they seeing really? not to be alarmist or anything, because whats the point…but as has become my inclination in every area*, i am taking note. specifically, i am taking note and notice of current and past events that could be reasonably associated with global climate change (and resulting near-term human extinction), and i think our best feminist thinkers and visionaries visions of our female future are absolutely relevant to that. that is all.
* i see that they have found one of the black boxes from the most recently “disappeared” malaysian jet and i am waiting to hear if this catastrophic failure was weather-related. considering what we already know, that the last communication with the plane involved changing the flight path to avoid the weather, i suspect we already know the answer to that…but far be it from me to try to predict the
future uh, past?
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