March 8, International Women’s Day 2015
This year, International Women’s Day is themed “Make It Happen“, a much-needed call to get cracking on some of the biggest issues for women around the world. It’s a message echoed by Executive Director of UN Women Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, who recently posted a video message urging countries to “step it up” for gender equality, so that the world will be 50/50 by 2030. In 2015, “awareness” is out — action is in.
International Women’s Day 2015 Theme: Make It Happen
A Message by UN Women’s Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka
Why I Dance
Are we seeing here a fascinating new direction inside the global women’s empowerment movement? Or is it just women finding sexual empowerment, freedom, joy and expression through pole dancing?
What we see at the video looks like a revival of a centuries-old tradition; the sacred union between Wicca, women’s empowerment, and casting a spell through sexy, ritual dance!
“Why I Dance is a pole dance film about women who come together to reclaim their bodies and themselves. In celebration of all women everywhere. It was created in honor of One Billion Rising: Revolution.”
Down In The River To Pray
We hear religious gospel music:
“Many of the slave songs were coded messages for escaping. When the slaves escaped, they would walk in the river because the water would cover their scent from the bounty-hunters’ dogs. Similarly, the “starry crown” would refer to navigating their escape by the stars. And of course, “Good Lord, show me the way” is a prayer for God’s guidance to find the escape route, commonly known as “the Underground Railroad.”
Alison Krauss – Down To The River To Pray
Beltane Maypole Dance
We see a dance, which looks similar as the ritual of a Beltane celebration with a Maypole Dance, where the pole (phallus) becomes the sacred center point of the universe, connecting the different realms:
“Today’s Pagans and Wiccans celebrate Beltane much like their ancestors did. A Beltane ritual usually involves lots of fertility symbols, including the obviously-phallic Maypole dance. The Maypole is a tall pole decorated with flowers and hanging ribbons, which are woven into intricate pattern by a group of dancers. Weaving in and out, the ribbons are eventually knotted together by the time the dancers reach the end.”
“The classical period of witchhunts in Europe and North America falls into the Early Modern period or about 1400 to 1700, spanning the upheavals of the Reformation and the Thirty Years’ War, resulting in an estimated 70,000 to 100,000 executions. The last executions of people convicted as witches in Europe took place in the 18th century. In the Kingdom of Great Britain, witchcraft ceased to be an act punishable by law with the Witchcraft Act of 1735. In Germany, sorcery remained punishable by law into the late 18th century. Contemporary witch-hunts have been reported from Sub-Saharan Africa, India and Papua New Guinea. Official legislation against witchcraft is still found in Saudi Arabia and Cameroon.”
“The term Wicca first achieved widespread acceptance when referring to the religion in the 1960s and 70s. Prior to that, the term Witchcraft had been more widely used. Whilst being based upon the Old English word wicca, a masculine term for sorcerers, the actual individual who coined the capitalised term Wicca is unknown, though it has been speculated that it was Charles Cardell, who certainly used the term Wiccen during the 1950s.”
“During ritual practices, which are often staged in a sacred circle, Wiccans cast spells or “workings” intended to bring about real changes in the physical world. Common Wiccan spells include those used for healing, for protection, fertility, or to banish negative influences. Many early Wiccans, such as Alex Sanders, Sybil Leek and Doreen Valiente, referred to their own magic as “white magic”, which contrasted with “black magic”, which they associated with evil and Satanism. Sanders also used the similar terminology of “left hand path” to describe malevolent magic, and “right hand path” to describe magic performed with good intentions; terminology that had originated with the occultist Helena Blavatsky in the 19th century. Some modern Wiccans however have stopped using the white-black magic and left-right hand path dichotomies, arguing for instance that the colour black should not necessarily have any associations with evil.”
“Any time women come together with a collective intention, it’s a powerful thing. Whether it’s sitting down making a quilt, in a kitchen preparing a meal, in a club reading the same book, or around the table playing cards, or planning a birthday party, when women come together with a collective intention, magic happens.”
― Phylicia Rashad
“Dance is the hidden language of the soul”
― Martha Graham
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Have a Magic Day!