A few years ago, I sat in my home office with a cup of tea and listened to Barbara Marx Hubbard and Jean Shinoda Bolen during an Inspiring Women’s Summit produced by The Shift Network. I don’t remember which year it was, but I do remember listening to wise women talking about pregnancy and birth in a new way. It was more of a kitchen table kind of conversation than a lecture, and I found myself commenting out loud every once in a while. I also remember getting tears in my eyes thinking about my own first pregnancy and birth, which was more of a “tough love” experience than anything close to what Barbara and Jean were describing.
In less than 2 weeks, we will all have the opportunity to find a quiet space, get online, and attend the 5th Annual Inspiring Women Summit on April 20th and 21st, followed by a weekly series of presenters through May 28th. Gather the Women Global Matrix is a Silver Co-sponsor of the Summit, and we will help spread the word in a mass email on April 17th. Basic access to the entire program is free. We can listen to the sessions live as well as to recordings that will be available during the “open replay” window of time. Information on when that window opens and closes will be on the website at http://www.inspiringwomensummit.com.
Featured speakers this year include Barbara Marx Hubbard, Lucy Liu, Jennifer McClean, Lisa Nichols, Sonia Ricotti, Anodea Judith, and many other incredible women. Some of those names are familiar to me, others are not, but I will be tuned in to meet them and learn.
The Shift Network uses the phrase “feminine essence” a lot. It’s generously sprinkled throughout the information on the Summit. I know what essence means, but nothing is casually dropped on the website, so I looked it up. Naturally, there are several definitions, but the one I choose to associate with “feminine essence” is: “the individual, real, or ultimate nature of a thing especially as opposed to its existence”. I am also partial to “the permanent as contrasted with the accidental element of being”.
I believe with my whole heart that Gather the Women Global Matrix is based on feminine essence. Our Vision Statement begins with, “Linked globally by our interactive website and social media, we invite women to demonstrate their courage to risk leaving old conformities and old paradigms by joining with millions of others throughout the world bringing reverance, respect and empowerment to all that is feminine. At a profound level, Gather the Women is evoking an experience as women of our own value and worth to the world.” That is our intentional element of being.
On the pragmatic side (which is also a feminine quality), as a Co-sponsor and Affiliate, Gather the Women will receive a commission from any purchase by the members of our list during or after the event. The Shift Network will be selling a digital package of audio downloads and PDFs, CDs, transcripts, and courses. (Our funds are used for our annual Gather the Women retreat, our website, and other operating expenses.)
I live in Juneau, Alaska. Many of our Gather the Women sisters live in small towns and cities in the United States and abroad. The odds of attending a series of seminars like the series that will be available through the Inspiring Women Summit are slim, but through the magic of the Internet, we can pour ourselves a cup of tea or coffee, settle back, and absorb the “feminine essence” of remarkable women.