In the Self Crafting Year Book, the challenge page for April asks you to reflect on your use of “Offloading Behaviours” when dealing (or not dealing) with your feelings.
Offloading behaviours, as defined by Brene Brown and Glennon Doyle look like Anger, Blame, Avoidance and Numbing. These are the violence we use against others and ourselves to avoid reality.
What could you do and be that would enable you to
own your feelings and your entire reality?
This is the question that Trista Hendren’s book Mother Earth asks. Trista sent me Mother Earth to review, and although it did not make it onto Mamalina’s Bookshelf (an Instagram project for my collection of children’s books that promote Peace Education), I believe this book is best suited to share right here, where the talk is all about the individual work of Self Crafting.
Author : Trista Hendren – Illustrator : Elisabeth Slettnes – Publisher : The Girl God, 2013
“Our mother is the forgotten parts of ourselves, they realised.
When we hurt our Mother, we are hurting ourselves. And when we hurt ourselves, we also hurt Her.”
The Girl God publishes interfaith, feminist series of books about the Goddess. As a women’s mysteries teacher and a lover of children’s storybooks that promote beauty and peace in the world, I follow The Girl God’s publications with a special interest, and I have loved everything I’ve read.
The message in this book is clear from the beginning : The Earth is our Mother, we must take care of her. That said, there is a deeper point that does not go unspoken : the violence we do to the Earth is reflected in the violence we have in our society, in the violence we have in our communities, in the violence within our own homes, and in the violence we do to ourselves.
With fascinating artwork by Elisabeth Slettnes, Hendren asks us to delve deep within Self, to reflect and reflect again. The story of the girl who lives with a mother who is both wild and free, is the story of each of us and our connection to the Wild Self – our birth right as inhabitants on planet Earth. When the girl and her mother get sick, they find the healing not only in returning to the Rhythm of Life, but also in the clearing between them. Words must be spoken. That which is out in the open but never spoken of, must be finally acknowledged.
The story is meaningful and the images are captivating. Some children will enjoy the book, simply because its a story of a mum and her daughter. The tone of the text is at times blunt, and children who like to have their imagination inspired may not enjoy this book. It is straight forward in its delivery and the layout is clunky. These are some of the reasons why this book did not make it to Mamalina’s Bookshelf. The worth for this book, I believe, is not in its appeal to children. This is a picture book for adults.
Where this book would have the most impact is in a book club. It’s filled with quotations from leading authors and thought drivers about the environment, ecology and Goddess ideology. I imagine a group of women in the Red Tent, each with their own copy of Mother Earth, discussing the poetry, the art and the statements that populate this book.
Group discussions of Mother Earth, or simply a series of personal revisits will lead to great things! From the first page, we can’t read the quotations without being inspired to change. The story of Helani and her mama will cause reflection on our own relationships and parenting. As we dive deeper into the reactions triggered by the message in this book, we will be called to arms, to stand up for what matters most, and to find deeper compassion for Self.
This is a great book for its possibility to lead the world to great and healing change. For its capacity to ask us : “Will you show how much you love Mother Earth, the next seven generations, and most of all, your Self?” This book inspires each of us to stand up, Be the Change, and own our own reality. For that, I give it 5 stars out of 5.
For more information about Owning Your Own Reality, see the April Challenge page from the Self Crafting Year Book.
The article Book Inspiration for Owning Your Own Reality was published by Hollie B., for the Institute for Self Crafting.
Feel free to share this article with your friends, by using the url : http://instituteforselfcrafting.com/ownyourreality/.
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