What is matriarchy? What do you think a matriarchal society would look like? ecotrain question of the week

in #ecotrain4 years ago (edited)

'What is matriarchy? What do you think a matriarchal society would look like?'

@ecotrain question of the week.

A follow up after my answer to the question: 'What is patriarchy?'



Matriarchy is a social system in which the 'mother' is leading.
Or in my opinion: Matriarchy is a social system in which the maternal qualities are leading.

So that means it can be both women and men leading in that sense, as long as they do it from their feminine qualities.
I'm saying 'leading' and not 'ruling' as it would not be a matriarchy if there was 'ruling' going on by whomever, men or women, because 'ruling is a masculine trait and that would make it a patriarchy, even if it was 'ruled' by women.

Women ( and men) who are well in tune with their feminine qualities see a position of leadership as a service instead of a privilege and therefore are in the modus of 'giving' instead of 'taking'.

This is because of the care for all of life that comes inherently with the feminine qualities. In fact 'care for life' is the core of everything feminine.
The feminine works in a totally different way then the masculine does. It is not logical, or structured in a logical way.
Oh it has it's structure, but it depends on chaos and what ever serves life best. And one could even say that the feminine has its logic, but it is the kind of logic that synthesises instead of analyses. It is the logic of what makes most 'sense' to our bodies and to our inner radar that takes all of life and it's wellbeing in regard and that is called intuition. It speaks in songs, its language is poetry, art and touch. It's skills are feeding, healing, reconnecting, being creative, birthing, accepting, forgiving, relaxing, enjoying, letting go. It's all the qualities we so sorely need in our society and which have been condemned and pushed to the background.
These qualities do not only live in women, they sure as heaven also live in men who are connected to their femininity.
I think it is time to give women and men who are in touch with their femininity as much space as they need to heal this planet. Automatically they will make space for masculine qualities to be given their rightful place in the order of things, serving life.

Below video shows a Bonobo monkey society in the wild versus captivity. In the wild the Bononbo's are living in a matriarchy...
(It starts getting relevant at about 2 minutes from the start if you're in a hurry, though the rest might also be interesting to you as it is about female sexual freedom.)

The women presenting this video, Layla Martin, is looking at the Bonobo society from the viewpoint of sexual freedom. This is not so much my point here. Although I think it does play a role in empowering women and female qualities to flourish to have sexual freedom, it does not have to look like this that women would all have sex with multiple male and female partners.I think in a matriarchal society sexual energy, which is life force energy, would flow more freely but could also be expressed in a monogamous way or by loving touch in a non sexual way.

My point here is that the female Bonobo's take care that everyone is at ease and that there is hardly any strife going on. They live in peace when they are wild in the jungle. They don't boss the men around, it just kind of flows and everybody has it's place.

What is also interesting and what prompted my question from last week, is the way the Bonobo's behave in captivity. In captivity the Bonobo's society structure becomes patriarchal. Why does this happen?
My conclusion is: Because there is a feeling of not being safe. A feeling of fear and scarcity. The food is not readily available for grabbing of the trees whenever they are hungry, it is given at a set time and at a limited amount. The right of the physically strongest starts to rule. When there is danger, like provocative, or loud zoo visitors or medical necessities, they cannot run away because they are confined, frustration builds. The monkey are not in their natural habitat at the bossom of mother earth, they can not live a fully whole life like they would in nature, they start living guarded lives in survival mode.

I think we as a human species have been living in survival mode for as long as patriarchy is around. Or actually I should say it differently:

We as a human species have been living in a patriarchal society structure since we started living in survival mode.

In my previous article about patriarchy and its origins ( The link is at the top), I write that I believe that something happened long ago of which we still have the story of Adam and Eve which symbolically tells about it, that has traumatised humans on a planetary level and that the effect of that was an abandonment wounding from which we have been living ever since as a culture.
The reason I mention it here is that I want to connect it to the Bonobo studies shown on the you-tube because that's what initially got me started asking these questions in the first place. Like all others on the ecotrain, I felt like I hadn't written something that encompassed it all. And I also felt like I had left out many essential elements like this Bonobo video, so I wanted to just make the connection here, as it seems important. I actually feel like I left the most important part out of my last post, so I am going to include some more explanation about the masculine and patriarchy here as understanding it is inseparably entwined with understanding the feminine and matriarchy. So here it goes:

Living from an abandonment wounding equals living in survival mode ( like the Bonobo's in captivity). The underlaying conviction is that you are not safe, not taken care of and there is not enough, so you've got to start grabbing what you can, this means survival mode takes over.

I believe that living from survival mode does not just switch on the masculine qualities, this actually switches on the wounded masculine qualities in both men and women. It feels to me like that is basically what survival mode is.

Just think about it: When it is war time or economic crisis the things that go out the window first are art, healthcare, childcare, vacation, relaxing time, loving touch, emotional care, vulnerability etc. All feminine qualities. They seem like luxury all of a sudden. And maybe in very alarming situations this could be true for a short period of time, but we as a society have been seeing feminine qualities as frivolous and superfluous for thousands of years by now and that only allows us to survive, not to thrive.

For thriving we need feminine qualities not only to be given space also, but to actually lead.

(More about that in the third post of this series about social structures.)
Stuck in survival mode we have not just repressed the healthy feminine but also the healthy masculine qualities. I don't believe we know what true and healthy masculinity looks like on the level of society structure as what we see nowadays is so out of balance and distorted in many ways because the feminine qualities are not given space to balance it.
True and healthy masculinity cooperates in unison with the true and healthy feminine.
Competition and strive only are necessary when there is a threat, when there is not enough, when survival mode switches on. And when it switches on it kind of overrules everything. But it is an emergency button, it should not be the general mode of operation. Let's get out of survival mode!
We have not seen true and healthy femininity on this planet for a long time either, but we do have an idea of what it looks like, luckily. Maybe because we crave and miss it so much. And because creation is compassionate and shows us what the way out is. Even though we have not lived our feminine truth for a long time it still beats in our hearts and whispers to us in our dreams to guide us home.

The key to switching the survival mode button off. The sacred feminine.

We have been programmed genetically to be in survival mode thousands of years ago by an alien race for their own purposes. ( For more explanation see my previous article:https://steemit.com/ecotrain/@clara-andriessen/what-is-patriarchy-is-a-patriarchy-the-same-as-a-society-led-by-men-or-is-it-more-a-society-led-by-fear-and-a-feeling-of)
But I believe that this genetic coding is only a superficial 'software' layer. Our hardware, the way benevolent Creation has originally wired us, is still programmed to original innocence, abundance, trust and bliss.
Do you ever feel like to be blissful is a sin at this day and age? I do. Like when I am feeling ecstatic about something at the same time there is this kind of fear inside me, that the 'bliss police' will come and arrest me for being too happy.
Funny huh? Actually it's not.

This is so typical for the way we've been programmed in survival mode: 'Bliss is not ok while trying to survive.'
Screw this message, we so do not need to be in survival mode any longer, what we need is to learn to trust in the benevolence of creation again. And to do that we need all the bliss we can create and handle. I believe this is what will get us out of survival mode.

To do that we need to get back in to our bodies asap as that is where bliss begins.
If you have ever really surrendered to a ripe, red, juicy strawberry with whipped cream you know what I mean. Getting back in to our bodies is also what is needed to release trauma. Because that is where it is stored. Our mistaken beliefs that we are not good enough and therefore have been abandoned by God or our parents, that we are guilty and deserve to suffer, that we only deserve happiness and abundance if we work so hard and such late hours for it that we won't have time or energy to enjoy it, are stored in our bodies. The false idea that all we have a right to is to survive on the bare minimum of scraps of happy moments as if it is a scarcity is stored in our genes. We need to get back in touch with all those twisted convictions and the emotions they cause us to feel and write about them, dance with them, sing with them, hold space for them until they melt in the arms of your own feminine creative powers. Men and women can do this. Then, when we have danced it out, shouted under water, cried in the arms of our partners, truth will be remembered, about who we are and what is our birthright: To thrive.

The last point I want to make is that reconnection to the earth is of such importance in all of this reawakening of the feminine. Reconnection to mother earth will come when we reconnect to our bodies and remember truth. Because she has never stopped being available for connection to us, it is us who have lost touch with her.
So get back in touch with your body!

Finally I want to give a little more attention to men and the masculine as it may seem that I think that the masculine is worth not much and has only got one setting which is the survival mode, but nothing is less true. I value men very much and believe they play a vital role in getting us out of survival mode and in to bliss mode.
I believe men can heal in this way too by getting back in touch with their bodies and that they ( as well as women with masculine qualities) facilitate this when they hold space for the feminine in themselves, women and other men.
This is actually one of the qualities of the true and healthy masculine that I do know of: Holding space for the feminine in themselves, women and all of life. I believe it is the core of their true being actually. And it is most beautiful, honourable and attractive. ( And the reason why we women fall like bricks for heroes in movies )

I think this aspect of the true and healthy masculine is key to the revival of the true and healthy feminine: to hold space for the feminine and guard it.


Matriarchy is:
A society in which the feminine principles of care for all life lead the way.
A society where we are connected to our bodies, our emotions and mother earth.
A society that reminds us that creation is benevolent, generous and life is meant to be blissful.
A society where men hold space for the feminine in themselves and others and where the qualities of the true and healthy masculine are revived and serve life and the quality of it.

Below is a marvellous video by Eve Ansler for inspiration.
(And even though it has mostly feminine images it is for sure also meant to inspire men to celebrate their bodies.)

I hope you read this with as much pasion I felt when I wrote this. I feel very passionate about reawakening and reintroducing the feminine values in the proper respected way to our society. I may not have all the answers and understand things just partially at this point. I do know that we ALL sorely need the feminine qualities in our lives right now. And I pray that they are invited received with a warm welcome back in to our lives.

Did you enjoy reading this post? Consider following me so I can keep putting my insights out there. Upvotes are also largely appreciated.

Care to know what other people have answered to this question? Check out the posts at @ecotrain as we are all passionately writing about it this week, which is soooo exciting because you can see the subject from multiple different viewpoints in that way.

Lots of Love Clara


@clara-andriessen, my dear, this is the article I read !3!! times! as I felt there are so many layers you touch here. And I agree with Alex, this is so far the greatest post I read from you! (I still believe that it will be more) but for now, it is absolutely stunning! I think I will get back to it more as it feels there so many aspects to be explored.

the 'bliss police' will come and arrest me for being too happy.

I can share it. Even now although I have done a lot of training, I cried, and I danced and I am being cared and loved it still comes sometimes. And you right that it is only in us to get it out from our code!

A society where men hold space for the feminine in themselves and others and where the qualities of the true and healthy masculine are revived and serve life and the quality of it.

I think this is so important and thank you for bringing it to our attention. When we speak of matriarchy we often forget about masculine energy which is needed for a balance!

Image Source

Yes, that is so right! ( your picture and what it says) Thanks! Yes, keep on going with the dancing and crying and laughing! We've got to cheer each other on!

ohh, sorry to do this but I'm leaving a comment so I can find it come back when I'm not so sleepy. Looks like something I'm going to want to digest and ruminate on <3

Oh cool! Yeah leave a comment as a bookmark all you want, I don't mind!

This is absolutely gorgeous, Clara. Really thorough and very spot on. In reading this I realized that toxic masculinity is very simply pure masculinity with no feminine balance. Masculinity is beautiful, but it has to be balanced. I think one of the reasons so many of us struggled with this question is that we went in thinking matriarchy must be unbalanced feminine, but that's not it at all. I'm unsure what unbalanced feminine would even look like because balance is such an important feminine quality.
I am fascinated by this whole survival mode thing. We have basically been living in fight or flight for thousands of years now. No wonder people are always sick or tired. And oh my goodness the idea that leading is serving is super revolutionary. That alone could change everything. Thanks so much for this beautiful post and also for this really important question. I really think we are uncovering really important, world-changing things here that are truly important to our evolution.

Hi! Thanks for lifting that out of my post: In reading this I realized that toxic masculinity is very simply pure masculinity with no feminine balance. You doing that made me see it as simple as it is too. Thanks, wonderfully insightful. <3

You are most welcome. Something in your writing inspired it, and it felt like such a revelation.

I love this Clara! There is so much deeply embedded wisdom here ✨💖🙏

I think it is time to give women and men who are in touch with their femininity as much space as they need to heal this planet.

Yes yes yes! Give the feminine space to lead! This is exactly the antidote to the scarcity programming. I totally feel you on the bliss police thing and it is so healing to truly embody our pleasure through food, touch, being in nature, etc. this is the way of healing!

I read a thing by Tulsi Gabbard today, a politician in Hawaii. Now of course the US politics are so fucked, but she truly gives me hope and described from her heart something very similar to what you wrote! Here is a bit,

Yes, my yoga practice and yoga worldview. Many people get involved in politics as a career. But I see politics as a way to practice karma yoga. The essence of karma yoga is that we can find true happiness when we are serving God and humanity, rather than just living for ourselves. No matter what our occupation or situation in life, we can all work and live in the spirit of karma yoga, or selflessly working for the well-being of others.

The spirit of karma yoga is nicely described by Mahatma Gandhi: “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

When my focus is on serving the people of Hawaii and our country,
I don’t experience the kind of anxiety that many people involved in politics experience. Most politicians are always afraid of what other people think,
with their decisions clouded by their fear of losing the next election. That’s not what drives me. I just do the best I can to be of service and that’s it.

I really hope she can be our president someday to firmly root this gorgeous feminine heart. Much love to you!!

HI Mountainjewel! Yes , that sounds like the right mindset for a leader. That would be wonderful if such a person could lead as president... Let's keep on dreaming! ( I mean for real so it'll manifest.) Love to you too.

Exactly! Dreaming into manifestation 💕🙏

I too have been studing the Bonobo's for a while now and have seen what you have seen, the utter natural elegance to each other unlike other chimps. I love this article, and as far as the commenter that says there has never been a Feminine lead culture that has thrived, thats simply not true, starting with the pre-christian Gnostics to some Meso-American cultures, the beauty and connectivity that came from such is still in our cellular memory. Yet when wounded male dominated cultures attack, these beautiful islands of paradise disappear only to reemerge collectively in all of feminine
Consciousness as you yourself are demonstrating so well in this fantastic article. Our phliogentic memory is alive in you and your beloved, and now I sense that this mere taste of bliss will turn into a Mothering smorgasbord of plenty and safety for all whom wish to eat and drink freely from Her giant table.
I will join you there smiling.
Excellent trues you have spoken. Look forward for more of your knowledge and wisdom.

Aw, so cool, thank you so much for your appreciation! You humble me :-)
It all sounds great, I'd love a smorgasbord full of feminine delicacies. yet, I don't know what you mean by phliogentic memory... could you explain? Thanks for following me! It's much appreciated!

So very very true! I live my life by my ancient DNA and to be honest all the vocabulary from 80s to present really confuse me! LOL
I only u'stand part of what all the words mean, but the feeling is the same. I am totally in agreement with you. My family is one of a long line of medicine women and we ruled the roost. The other side of my family were very strong women, always the women. I have no idea when people talk about men and ruling, they can try but in all honesty it is only when we allow them to.

oh wow wow.. this is my favorite post you have written! amazing deep insights from start to finish.. this post is like a REAL education! i have learned a lot from this.. you divine women!

AW, THANK YOU! It's really great to hear that coming from a man, my favourite man. Tat is what I mean by holding space for the feminine! YAY, you're my hero! Would you consider resteeming this post?

I love this! How beautifully expressed! Have you ever listened to Mark Passio talk about balancing the sacred feminine and the sacred masculine? Hopefully we someday won’t have to choose between a patriarchy or a matriarchy, but everyone will be balanced and self governing. Will we see it in our day? Maybe not...but we can do our best in our own sphere of influence.

Yes, will you write about that in our next question of the week? How you see your ideal social structure? Sounds like you have good ideas about it...

Thank you for such an in-dept answer, I have had to come back to read it again because you have covered so much. I do agree with all that you say, for me it is all about balance and acceptance for both male and female, that and not leaving with a dominant view over natures and others. fascinating info re. the bonobo's all about flow. Thank you Clara x

You're very welcome!

I really enjoyed reading this! You made so many good points.

You got me thinking about listening to my body, whether I am in survival mode right now or not and striving for bliss in my life. I also like the analogy of the Bonobos because it suggests that we may be in confinement even though it doesn't look like it at first glance. I do feel confined when I am subscribing to our societal norms. Like you said you feel fear or guilt to feel bliss. I can relate to the feeling, because it has been habituated and it is something I am working on changing. Thank you for bringing more insights as to why!

We need to get back in touch with all those twisted convictions and the emotions they cause us to feel and write about them, dance with them, sing with them, hold space for them until they melt in the arms of your own feminine creative powers.

Again thanks for the inspiration here. Releasing stored trauma is something I have been working on. You've given me more ideas about encouraging healing in my life :)

Great! that's what I write these things for. Well I must admit they bring me clarity too while writing. Isn't that something great about steemit?

It sure is. I wouldn't be writing as much otherwise!

This cover of Joni Mitchels woodstock expresses the feeling of it in music for me: We are stardust, we are golden, caught in the devils bargain and we've got to get our selves back to the garden. ( The white haired man by the way is Divid Crosby):

No patriarchy or matriarchy is equality for both genders.


Do you mean to say that you want equality for both genders? Me too. My idea of matriarchy is like that, as the way I see it the healthy feminine qualities present in both women AND men, look after the wellbeing of both women AND men equally. And it is the feminine qualities present in the ones leading, that would lead, not perse women.

To be honest, I think matriarchy would fail miserably.

If it does, its failure would look like a grand success compared to the tried, tired absolute failure of this left brain wounded masculine driven culture of war, lack and pain. That is if your infereing that your definition of success is what this world has now, a indebted fiat dollar that is dying, and a polluted earth that is ruled by averous, maybe one really needs to read what has been shared because both poster and I believe that this masculine driven culture is almost dead.
The stars don't come out shining until night fully falls.
In short necessity is not enough.

Did you read the post? If so could you back up your point?

I think you are not aware of the biological reality of the sexes and why we evolved as we did. We have male and female sexes because somewhere long long long time ago we had a "split" to share roles in raising offspring, not just in humans but in animals also. One sex (male) to gather resources and other sex (female) to take care of for the offspring. That's not some "alien" construct designed to enslave us or make us unhappy but a biological and evolutional necessity.

Where in my post do you see me saying that the different sexes having different roles is not a good thing and that that is what our alien genetic coding is about? I think you misread the piece. The alien coding is about fear and scarcity.

Well, different sexes having different roles gave birth to "patriarchy", there was never a successful "matriarchy". Women have more power than most people think, but these "powers" are not so obvious. For example, one of our main evolutionary driving forces, and the thing that separates from chimps, for example, is that females choose their mates. In case of female chimps, they have to just submit to the strongest one. In humans it's different - a woman chooses her mate and in a lot of ways that fact shaped our view of nature as "one which selects", so there is power. There is the power that females have inside a family - a family as a basic unit of society - first army, first religion, first government. I don't think power is only in "governments" and being able to vote for example.

Curiouser and curiouser, you are still not referring to my text here. Maybe you are having trouble accepting/understanding that I have a different definition for matriarchy then what it says in the dictionary?

I don't even feel like replying to what you wrote because you are not even taking the post in for real and to me it is not a real conversation like that.

I think I did, I'm putting biology and evolution between reality and making a society a better place by just giving women more "power" and making men more get in touch with their "feminine qualities". In my opinion, these two can never meet.

I'm thinking about making a post about it, this could be a productive conversation because it's really hard to express yourself and your line of reasoning in comments like these.

Right well, it starts to make more sense to me what you' re on about as you are actually referring to something in the text now. I appreciate it. So You believe my ideal is too far from reality to be able to manifest itself because there are biological and evolutionary factors that stand in the way?

yeah i would love to hear why you think that?