The Spiritual Purpose of Menopause: Letting Go
by Roslyne Sophia Breillat
Throughout the early stages of their menopausal journeys, some women experience a period of grief that is seemingly never-ending. This grief is a facet of a powerful emotional death/rebirth process. And why does a woman grieve during this phase of her life? She grieves because she is psychologically dying and she grieves because she is releasing the pain of the world from within her womb.
If she relinquishes her identification with her fertility, with being a mother, a lover, a wife, a secretary, an artist, a receptionist, a menstruating woman, she is drawn ever deeper into the timeless mystery of her inner source.
Woman is a fathomless ocean of love, an eternal wellspring of devotion to the source of her Goddess within. In her heart of hearts she naturally desires to live from this place of devoted love. Too often she is forced to leave her infinite sanctuary of lunar feminine darkness to enter the glaring solar light of the outer masculine worldly dream.
Her reality lies within the inner receptivity of an essence that is essentially yin. Her reality is not of existence, clocks, time or linear structures. Her reality is innately cyclic, ovular, circular, spiral. When she is overly attached to the outer world’s unreal beliefs about menopause, she cannot consciously embrace the joy and freedom that awaits her through deeply entering her body at this time.
Although her menopausal journey does signify an ending, it also bestows the expansive freedom of new beginnings. If she believes modern society’s misinterpretation that menopause is the end of her life as a real woman, she will suffer.
And so, she grieves. She grieves because the modern world does not honour her gentle mysterious power, and she grieves because she knows, deep within her heart, that there is much more to being a woman beyond the superficiality of contemporary society.
During her menopausal transition, she is pulled softly, gently, deeply and often tumultuously into her inner universe of darkness. In ancient mythology, woman was the seductive siren of the sea, sweetly singing to shipwrecked sailors as she enticed them into the dark underworld caverns of her oceanic depths. Our current civilisation, the civilisation that ignores the emerging power of the menopausal woman, cannot meet her depth, for it thrives in the shallow waters of unreality.
When the pain of unfulfilled love enters her womb, she will frequently suppress the sweet fragrance of her essence so as to “cope” in the outer world. This requires a force that is alien to her cyclic female rhythm, creating a hard brittle shell that masks her inherent vulnerability and gentle strength.
During her menopausal journey, much repressed pain is released so that her loving wisdom can shine brightly throughout this empowering phase of her life. As the wise and loving consciousness within her womb seeks release and freedom during this unique purification, she will often experience tears of grief and sorrow as she mourns the loss of all that can never be again.
Since she first began menstruating, her deeply intimate relationship with her body has innately ebbed and flowed within the cyclic rhythm of tidal, seasonal and lunar phases. Like her beloved Mother Earth, she eternally experiences an endless cycle of birth, death and renewal. Each month she is nourished and replenished by the wisdom of her menstrual cycle, and each month she potentially moves deeper into the mystery of her being.
Tears of love, regret and remorse often emanate from a profound sorrow that has been a part of the female spirit for centuries. If she is a mother who has poured all her love into her children, she may now be faced with the reality of an empty nest and an empty heart as her babies suddenly grow up, spread their wings and fly away. Her treasure lays waiting within her emptiness. Her power lays waiting within her silence and stillness. Her joy and her radiant light lay waiting within her outpouring grief.
And why does she grieve? She grieves because this inexplicable loss seems almost unbearable, not yet knowing that her forthcoming blessings will be richly bountiful, for first she must experience emptiness. She grieves because she has not been seen, understood, loved. And when the beautiful cup, the holy chalice of her womb has been emptied of its grief, she begins to prepare for a life of deepening wisdom and grace-filled peace. She begins to fill her cup with the bountiful richness of new blessings.
If she is a woman who has never birthed from her womb’s ripeness, felt sweet milk flowing from her breasts, held her babies gently to her heart and nurtured them into maturity, she may now grieve with the awesome finality that she will never become a mother. Nothing can stop this grief, for now is its time to pour forth, and it must pour forth until it dissolves everything that inhibits the birthing of her wisdom, power and freedom.
Why, dear woman, do you grieve so? In truth, you have lost nothing, for you have nothing to lose. And yet, you must grieve now, because it is a necessary part of your birthing of wisdom. You grieve because you are letting go of everything that is unreal within you. You grieve because you are letting go of all attachments to your outer roles and accomplishments. You grieve because you no longer know who you are. You grieve for all your dear sisters whose loving power has been repressed and unacknowledged for centuries.
You grieve because you are woman who lives in a male-dominated world. You grieve because you long to be tenderly and passionately reached in the depths of your womb by man who is too busy thinking, doing and journeying to other planets to stop for one moment and love you and your beloved mother earth.
Woman’s grieving process during menopause is a purification that washes the past from her heart, body, spirit, mind. The cleansing waters of her tears gift her with a profound sense of joy, strength, freedom. Her new life cannot fully emerge until she consciously lets go of everything that she cannot carry on her journey of power and wisdom.
She grieves because she has accumulated layers of thoughts, emotions and beliefs that are not aligned with who she truly is. Her grief is a letting go of all that is not real within her body, within her heart, within her psyche. Her grief is the doorway to wisdom, power and freedom.
2008© Roslyne Sophia Breillat
www.wildheartwisdom.com - Roslyne Sophia Breillat -
Within the womb of every woman glows the consciousness of Mother Earth. Wildheartwisdom is a web site for nurturing the truth of this powerful feminine spirit and offers support for the female psyche’s many cyclic transformations. Wildheartwisdom focuses upon the deeper joy and purpose of menstruation, lovemaking, pregnancy, childbirth, mothering, relationships, menopause and beyond. Find spiritual guidance for healing from eating disorders, sexual abuse, miscarriage and abortion. There are currently three galleries featuring Sophia’s art and a selection of her article excerpts. As wildheartwisdom evolves more art and articles will be added as well as an extensive resource section. Sophia’s beautiful art and illustrations are for sale and she is currently seeking a publisher for her two books.