After another challenging year for sustainable development[mfn]Findhorn’s wastewater system operator Biomatrix has received the People’s Award at the Sydney Water Innovation Festival 2021: https://youtube.com/channel/UCkxYG5Ln3b–uqv-DaWpTBw[/mfn] we know that 2022 will focus internationally on artisanal fisheries and aquaculture, and glass… What in heaven’s name/on earth links these areas together?!
The association of women with fish was commonplace in European folk-lore in the past[mfn] https://mermaidsofearth.com/on-the-origin-of-mermaids/[/mfn], and in fin-de-siècle art and literature[mfn]ie. end C19[/mfn] women and “water ha[ve] been traditionally connected with life, birth and re-birth, creation and creativity, but also with death and oblivion. The water surface often serves as a kind of a mirror.”[mfn]Viola Parente-Čapková, © Wagadu Volume 3: Spring 2006; Narcissuses, Medusas, Ophelias… Water Imagery And Femininity In The Texts By Two Decadent Women Writers[/mfn] The last covers the glass imagery requirement, however tenuously!
So how can you& I help to create the right wall-/ceilingless conditions for women to engage more of their specific problem-solving capabilities in 2022?
Gender study facts
Across the globe women are heavily involved in CARE,[mfn] https://www.oecd.org/gender/data/women-are-well-represented-in-health-and-long-term-care-professions-but-often-in-jobs-with-poor-working-conditions.htm [/mfn] AFFORDABLE HOUSING[mfn] https://blog.shelter.org.uk/2021/03/why-social-housing-is-a-feminist-issue/ and https://www.hfw.org.uk/about-us/who-we-are/ [/mfn] and in the ENVIRONMENTAL sector, which includes agriculture, fisheries, forestry, and in adapting to and mitigating climate change. Women’s participation and representation in decision-making processes that pertain to their and their families’ environmental well-being, however are often majorly restricted. And there are still subtle, shatterproof ceilings in existence in Scotland and the ‘developed’ world too.
I contend this is not the case at the Findhorn Ecovillage — one more reason why the Findhorn Ecovillage Community needs to truly be a vital, viable and vibrant beacon of sustainable, caring and affordable community development.
E Q U I T Y
Encouraging fair and equitable direct access to, benefits from, and governance of natural resources to women, is a globally agreed priority and the subject of many national and international mandates. Family and community livelihood is positively affected when women have their own resources and hold decision-making authority regarding those resources.
Softer science indications
Objective facts are useful for clarifying this issue. But it’s the development of better local understanding of gender dimensions enacted, in spite of belief differences, through an intelligent leveraging and maximising of available individual effectiveness for the greater glory of the ‘Community,’ that are the strongest foundations of true, successful, longer term environmental change. Look at these:
https://askthescientists.com/men-women-different/ (Try equating some of the physical differences with behavioural traits — it’s fun to do (eg. skin thickness with sensitivity ))
Scientific reductionism has given us tons of facts (WMDestraction?) on gender “differences.” I believe we mustn’t give them more power than our binary thought processes already give them. Rather, we ought to encourage the use of our united common sense, emulating the position of the hippo on the above seesaw. For, to resolve any normal household challenge, we always find[mfn] remember that our guiding example is FINDhorn experience, not the Searchorn one …[/mfn] the best combination of individual abilities available for the job at hand. Our household solutions are not mired in differentiation (spots vs. no spots) or — worse — political correctness, but based on equity: eg. slower vs faster or hairier vs short-haired cats! Like in “Project Team Hippo,” individual capabilities ought to be evalu-weighted visavis each specific challenge, with (experienced or multi-talented) “hippo” types tipping the scales in the desired team direction. This, in my coworker experience, is what every caring, agile and clever Findhorn team/member/leader quickly learns to do!
So here’s wishing each of us interconnected team players, to courageously and effectively transcend simplistic differences during a 2022 overflowing with truly equitable thoughts, words and CARE in action towards all beings and our mother Earth! HAPPY Hogmanay!!!
[vertical-spacer] Here are a couple of soft New Year’s stories you might enjoy!