It’s common understanding many women suffer from an internal split between the light and dark aspects of their feminine nature, as society rewards women as virginal loving mothers and shames their desire for passion and sex. The path of Tantra, which translates as ‘union’, is a journey into the reconciliation of this split. Women have been taught their value is measured by their sexual attractiveness, their unconditional support of men, and their unselfish maternal support of their children. Told to be ‘good girls’, to listen to authority, and that their sexuality is something to give to others rather than for themselves. This version of the feminine, known as the Light or Sacred Feminine, struggles to be all that she is in the world. Of course she has her gifts in her lightness, her heart is open, she’s compassionate, the caring mother, devoted wife and committed friend. However, cut off from the depth of her life-force energy, she lives a one-sided and disempowered life, unable to bring her complete self into the world. When only this side of the feminine is developed women often tend to have poor boundaries. Having spent so many years taking care of other’s needs they often don’t know where their families or career end and they begin. Saying ‘no’ is a challenge, they have little time for themselves and if they did have a spare hour it’s unlikely they would know what to do with it. In contrast her twin sister, the Dark Feminine, who frequents the halls of power, is free from her sister’s need to shine brightly. She has been shamed and wronged by our society, she is the whore archetype, relegated to the unconscious, the shadow, something to be considered as evil.
The Darkness of Lilith
She is Lilith, the night, an intense and fiery emanation of lunar and feminine energy. An expression of the deepest regions of the human psyche, she illuminates our desire nature and holds the power the light feminine is missing. Arising from the earth, from the mother, from matter, she holds the key to the awakening of sexual energy, of the primal life force. With her legs open and her back arched she writhes in orgasmic ecstasy, screaming out her pleasure, unashamed for all to hear. When we follow the path of Lilith she guides us towards both our individual and collective patriarchal distortions in order to illuminate our shadows and to reclaim the power that has been torn away by the perversions of patriarchal structures, where she has been misunderstood, alienated and diminished. In her full awakened state she represents an emancipation from gender limitations, freedom and autonomy.
Menstruation and Meeting Lilith
Many women will experience their Lilith energy in the autumn phase of the menstrual cycle as hormone levels drop and PMT is experienced. Compelled to speak our minds, women can isolate with their truth, consumed by the wave of emotions coursing through their bodies. Yet they are told women are not meant to have anger. They are not supposed to be anything but nurturing, so the anger is repressed and becomes one more thing to feel guilty about. In the struggle to accept this part of our nature, the arising Lilith energy is pushed further away into the unconscious, but as Freud said whatever is unconscious rules us. Lilith will always find her way out, in her irritation, snappy remarks, and lack of patience. She is the source of our challenges until we finally own her, when we bring her out of the shadows and celebrate the power she has. Here she becomes our teacher, showing us what lies beneath the anger and rage, the places where we haven’t taken enough care, too busy looking after others to get the sleep, the exercise, the connections or pleasures that we need. In previous generations our mothers and grandmothers would have guided us through the territory of Lilith, giving us the support we needed to take care of ourselves and to rest into pleasure. Yet this wisdom of the feminine has been lost and we are left learning to ride the wild horse of Lilith, battered by her power and stuck in patterns of self-betrayal.
How Can We Meet the Dark Feminine Through Tantra
In Tantra, the path of integration of the light and the dark, of the masculine and the feminine, the union of polarities. We see the integration of the dark feminine necessary not just for living a more fulfilled life, but essential for embodied ascension required for spiritual awakening. In ancient times Tantric rituals were developed to support us on the journey of integration using the power of sexual energy, knowing it to be the most powerful energy available to us. Thankfully in the modern day world of Tantra these practices are available for women wanting to take the journey of power reclamation
Sacred Spot Ritual
The Sacred Spot ritual is one such practice that enables connection with and activation of the dark goddess, and with all that she holds. Held in a space of sacredness with the intention of awakening the dark feminine energies. After some relaxing body work the recipient of this ritual is asked for permission to be entered vaginally Yoni (Sanskrit for sacred cave) as it’s referred to in Tantra circles, with a finger/s with loving consciousness. If permission is given the Yoni is entered slowly and with consciousness with the intention of meeting all that is there with presence. Each ritual is unique in its appearance and process but for most women this is a mixed experience of pleasure, rage, pain, grief, joy, and any other unexpressed emotions that have been stored in the sensitive tissue that makes up the female sexual anatomy. For many women the chief storehouse of emotion is the G-spot area, which is an area of ridged erectile tissue on the anterior wall of the vagina. It can be located by entering an upward facing finger into the vagina and making the come hither motion. The G-spot is capable of feeling incredible pleasure, yet many women find this area numb or painful. In meeting the area with great sensitivity and love the pain can be cleared and the pleasure re-connected to. During the ritual women can shift shamanically into states of altered consciousness, they journey, connect with ancient wisdom and reclaim lost parts of themselves and return back more embodied and more powerful. Through integration of the dark feminine women are learning to respect and listen to their own intuitive knowledge. In doing so they are taking the first step in not only healing themselves but in healing the planet.