In the Womb

    As she sang to me that first time, i began to understand the importance of being in the womb; of allowing ourselves and others to be in the womb.

    There is so much rushing in America to get out. As there is with anything else in America, rushing. But there is so much value in not rushing. There is so much value in being in the womb.

    The womb is a place where we are both nurtured and protected. There is solitude and silence. In this warm and quiet place we grow, heal, develop and transform. The womb may be considered as  the heart of feminine wisdom. It is a receptive place-in the womb all we do is receive. There is a retreat from giving, and a primary purpose of receiving nourishment for body and soul. We are being fed and protected by a mother. 

    The deep psyche of feminine wisdom knows that in times of  life transitions, illness, injury, giving birth, or dying. that womb time is needed. Just as the wild animals know to do, and our grandmother’s cattle. They hole up somewhere away from the herd in some grassy bank of earth.

    The isolation, break from everyday routine, internal focus and biochemically induced changes may all lead to altered states of consciousness. These altered states of consciousness are powerful, our bodies are able to do things in them that they wouldn't normally or otherwise do. Altered states of consciousness are inductive to healing. When we come out of the womb we are reborn, transformed. 

    Celestial cycles offer to us natural times for retreating into the womb. The winter season in the northern hemisphere is a time for rest in the cave of regeneration. The new moon each month invites us to turn inwards and to rest.

    The ideal womb is a safe container of unconditional love and complete acceptance. In the water of the womb you may dream, imagine, and feel.

    I saw my 22 year-old daughter in the womb. She quietly knew that this is where she needed to be after her accident. Initially I wanted to coax her out into the sunshine and fresh air. Encouraging movement and the light of day. I wanted to save her from the sadness that she was feeling, even though i know that it is in the depths of sadness that a holiness may be found. That this journey belonged to her. Who would i be to rob her of it?

    I noticed an urgency from the whole world it seemed, to rush my daughter back out into classes,  streets and buses. To be seen when she didn’t want to be seen. 

    Why would we all be using this as a marker of progress or success so early in the game? When clearly, womb time was needed. 

    I decided to be completely okay with my daughter’s womb time. To relax around it entirely without worry or fear. To fully embrace the absolute rightness, need, value and worth of it. Although I counsel other parents on respecting the dignity of their children's lives, there is no objectivity when you see your own child in pain. But your own child in pain needs you to have an absolute and unshakable trust in her and in life. 

    I consciously created some womb time for myself. I understood then, that my role, like a midwife, was to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and the birth of the new baby, steadfastly holding the vision of the the end goal, the desired result, when, in so much pain, the woman in labor cannot. 

    The womb is a sacred place. We can hear that still quiet voice within, or if you like, the Divine.

    It was my dear friend and Sufi sister, Cynthia R., who was like a mother to me while I was in the womb, singing me healing prayers in Arabic over the phone, a remembrance of all the Divine qualities of Allah that I needed. It was an experience which I will always remember, one of those you imagine will flash before your eyes when you pass.