Equality will not be achieved while viewing the world from our old paradigm
I was listening to the brilliant, and most “awake” radio breakfast host out there, Chris Evans on Virgin Radio on International Women’s Day and he was chatting with Mary Portas about her work and her new book. She said something that unlocked a train of thought and awakened a line of philosophy in my core. She said (paraphrasing), “You cannot change the lack of equality (female/male balance) within a current societal structure, which is conditioned for the alpha type personality.” Wow, how true isn’t that! If you follow my writings on Medium (https://medium.com/@clembke88) you will see a trend in my articles where I am advocating a paradigm shift from a quantitative society to a qualitative one. Mary and I are very much on the same page here; we need to shift society as a whole, one person at the time, to evolve to the next level and achieve equality.
Trying to drive change from the perspective of the old paradigm
Human society is very much set up to celebrate the alpha personality; fight your way to the top and you are considered to have succeeded in life. It doesn’t matter if you are male or female, it is the alpha personality that will be considered successful. The challenge women have succeeding in this type of society is that they tend to not be alpha type personalities, they tend to be more nurturing, caring, compassionate, etc. Whereas, males have a greater portion of alpha type personalities in their midst. However, men who are not of the alpha personality do not fare well either in these hierarchies, so it is not just a female issue. It has been famously proclaimed that “if women were in charge, there wouldn’t be any more wars!”. Looking at the females leaders of countries that we have had, I wouldn’t say that history brings any evidence of that statement being true. The reason is because the women that have succeeded in rising to the top in our current paradigm are no different than the men they competed against, they are type A personalities with as much issues that men have brought through the ages. Now, if we can change that statement to “if people were in charge that rose to power within a male/female balanced society, there wouldn’t be any more wars!”, I will be more inclined to believe it. It doesn’t matter the gender, skin colour, religion or any other attribute of leaders in society, it is the qualities of the society that they were nurtured and shaped that determines their leadership qualities.
This societal structure was necessary and effective in the days when you needed strong leaders to protect against external threats. However, we are shifting far beyond those times and now the main challenge comes from within. That fear that was warranted in history still persists within us today, but we don’t actually know what we are afraid of, so we make up things to fear, basically anyone who is different from ourselves, change, etc. This applies to the majority of the movements for equality in our society today. Because of the prevalent energy of separation that still exists, movements don’t focus on unity, they have a “us-against-them” mentality. This mentality only leads to further divisions and contentious debates.
The idea that we can legislate away inequality is a fallacy and usually backfires on itself. If we tell a company that 50% of their employees have to be female or male without changing the corporate culture and the culture in which the company operates, you will end up with a lot of employees of one gender or another that cannot perform to the same level as the more established group because they don’t have the training and experience, nor are they operating in an environment that is in line with their personality. This only serves to perpetuate the stereotypes and give the status quo an argument against change. This is not to say that we shouldn’t use legislation to hasten the move towards equality, but governments need to take a holistic approach to change as opposed to the areas that are the most visible and they can use to falsely claim that they are succeeding for their own political gains.
With a bird’s eye view of society we see that it is stereotypically patriarchal because it has been shaped by alpha males for alpha males. It doesn’t nurture the individual, but rather protects the “initiates”. Take the Catholic Church for example; the, one can only surmise, institutionalised abuse of young boys has been allowed to persist for so long due to the power structure and the insular club mentality that permeates these types of organisations. I suspect, one of the reasons why, in particular, the Catholic Church have had such a plethora of cases of degenerate acts is the very lopsided imbalance of male energy. It was only after the Council of Nicea in A.D. 325 and the First Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381 that the leading female characters in the early Christian story were suppressed giving way to an entirely male dominated hierarchical power structure. In the case of the Catholic Church, I believe that its survival is entirely dependent on very quickly bringing in women to the ranks across the Church to even out the balance of male and female energy. However, in itself this is not a sustainable solution for the Catholic Church to maintain its following. It must face its shadows from its history and reform the same way I suggest society as a whole has to reform to create an equilibrium and bring forth much needed balance.
Forcing equality upon society will only lead to more division and confrontation. We must change our approaches and attitudes to every aspect of our lives to organically drive the change that will allow it to become a natural part of human evolution.
Driving change through evolution
The only way we will enact change is by engaging in open, transparent and continuous dialogue. The tug-of-war that we currently see, where the loudest alpha type personality garners the most followers and wins the argument will not solve the challenges we face. It is necessary, perhaps, in order for us to awaken to our own shadows relating to society for this to happen. However, it is not what will allow for peaceful transition into a new paradigm. We need to move away from the “us vs. them” attitude, to simply one of “us”. Equality has nothing to do with man vs. woman, black vs. white, Muslim vs. Christian, etc. Equality is about balance among us. Of course, we need to shine a light on the plight on the disadvantaged in society, but we need to do it with empowerment. Showcase how empowerment is helping the disadvantaged and it will increase the compassion from those who are not; it is through positive messaging that we create inclusion. Once you start looking at every situation with the us-mentality, it becomes natural to look at the individual, not separate from you, but the same as you. In actual fact the process will bring balance between the female and male energies within the individual giving space for more compassion and unity to take root and thrive. Through the individual we will shift our societal norms completely from the hierarchical pyramids where money, wealth and materialism are celebrated to flattened organisations that promote the individual and his/her creative contribution to society. This society will focus more on collaboration to solve the challenges we all face collectively rather than giving orders and frameworks that lack flexibility. Child care is a great example to use. If organisations want reliable attendance from their employees who are parents, instead of dumping the daycare problem on them as individuals, why doesn’t the organisation bring daycare within it so that parents can bring their toddlers into work and hand them over to daycare in-house? Some of the results will be:
- You are helping solve a stress for the employee creating gratitude
- You have a perk to offer in your recruitment drives
- Improved attendance
- Employees that spend more time at work because they don’t have to dash off to pick their child up from daycare
Do you see how the compassionate approach generating qualitative benefits in this example translates into revenue and savings in the output from these employees? Bringing these types of policies in across different aspects of the business create the idea of family, unity and community within an organisation. Silicon Valley companies, such as Google, are known to have some of these tools employed within their organisations, which is of course great. However, their challenge is that the approach is still from the eyes of the old paradigm. The full benefit will not be realised until the critical mass of individuals have shifted in to the new norm.
If you read my article “What You See, Hear and Feel Becomes Your Reality — External Sensory Perceptions” you will understand the foundation to change that we as individuals need to make to become more positive and to approach life more from our hearts as opposed to our egos. With such a change, it would become natural for each and every one of us to seek the best for our fellow humans as well as the planet and all its inhabitants. Since our organisations, governments, etc. are made up of people and thus become dynamic organisms with energetic signatures, or, if you prefer, cultures, it is the people within these organisations that drive change, but only through their own individual shifts. Irrespective of where in the traditional hierarchy these shifts happen (i.e. worker, management, director or board level), when critical mass has been achieved the organisation will have no choice but to change into the new paradigm. It is important to understand that the individual will not accept the change by order; the organisation must bring the individual to understand that the change is for their own holistic benefit and will serve every aspect of their lives. You can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink; it will drink when it is thirsty.
When we focus on what makes us tick and what we truly desire we start delivering better results, become more creative, become more loyal (for the right reasons) and far more efficient. We must get past the critical mass of people adopting this new approach before it becomes the new norm and there is no longer any space for the old paradigm to exist. When enough people are motivated by inclusiveness and compassion, the collective fear that drove us in the old world will have no place to take root and grow. In a qualitative based society we measure success against quality not quantity; e.g. we measure quality of someone’s contribution, not how much money they are worth, we measure the quality of living or happiness as opposed to the amount of money generated by a population to measure their success. At work it is more important how happy you and your customer are together as opposed to how much they spend with you. It comes down to loving what you do and the money will follow.
In this new paradigm female and male energies will be in balance, because they are in balance within each and every one of us. There will be room for anyone to succeed in the way they themselves feel is the definition of success, and their physically identifiable differences won’t be part of the discussion.
We can achieve what ever we set our mind to, but we need to believe that this future is possible and that the responsibility to start the process lies with each and every one of us.
Also published on Medium.