I’ve been contemplating the question, “What is power?”
My contemplations have sent me down a number of exploratory paths. I even received many responses to a survey I conducted to see how others thought of power.
There were many different types of responses, and what I could see in the definitions shared was that there seemed to be a delineation between seeing power in a masculine-heavy way, or in a feminine-heavy way, both extremes being expressed in healthy heaviness and unhealthy heaviness.
What do I mean by this?
By heaviness, I mean that the definitions of power tended to be either masculine or feminine in their expression.
By healthy and unhealthy, I mean that the opinions expressed a version of masculine or feminine power either in ways that are sacred and serve, or that are taken to extreme and cause harm.
Masculine-heavy ways of seeing or defining power included opinions like:
- Control over self, something or someone
- Others are under your thoughts/decisions
- Power for power’s sake
- Ability or will to take action, get things done, and bring ideas to life
- Influence through the word, with more influence and faster response indicating more power
- Stepping into full potential
- A tool or weapon
- Ability to move forward
- Ability to do something well
Feminine-heavy ways of seeing or defining power included:
- Self respect
- Making an impact
- Ability to effect change
- Being with Source
- Presence of mind to “be” rather than “do”
- A healing place within
- Humility in service to the forces of nature
- Soft or gentle
While many people individually expressed both masculine and feminine qualities in their definitions of power, I found it interesting that the descriptions themselves were so delineated.
In reviewing the responses more, I looked for expressions or definitions of power in statements that seemed to incorporate both the feminine and masculine qualities in them. What I found were definitions that described power as being:
- As unique as one’s DNA
- Unique dependent upon what we do with it
- Holding great responsibility with it
- Manifesting our full personal power in the world toward good
- A conglomerate of many different shape and forms – light and dark, positive and negative, heavy and light, soft and hard, loud and silent, in one or many, masculine or feminine
When I changed my business branding last year from Sophia Rising: Preparing a New Paradigm to Kim Marie: Awaken Your Inner Power, I wrestled with the word power. I wrestled because of my own perceptions of power.
I didn’t want my work to be perceived as focused in any way on an out of balance power that indicates domination, arrogance, personal will, or control over anyone or anything.
Somehow the phrase “Inner power” seemed to soften this a bit. Interestingly, this showed up in the survey as well. Many people responded saying that power was different from empowerment.
To be empowered is to have power within.
More specifically, I like to think of being empowered as sourcing our power from within. Many of the negative connotations of power are associated with power that is sourced from without.
If we consider things like control over others, domination, exploitation, hierarchy, or separation, all of these unhealthy expressions of masculine power require others or something outside of ourselves for that power to be expressed.
This is also true of the unhealthy expressions of feminine power such as manipulation, submissiveness, co-dependency, stagnancy and jealousy.
This kind of power implies separation. There is me, and there is you. There is us, and there is them. Power of this type is sourced externally. It comes from doctrines, dogmas, fears, and self-righteousness.
When power is fully sourced from within, from our true divine essence, there’s no reference to any other, and thus no comparison, competition, judgment or separation. There’s wisdom and a sense of true self.
We all have the qualities of both the Sacred Masculine and the Sacred Feminine within us. My work is entirely about expressing these qualities in perfect harmony with each other for the sake of experiencing our highest potential.
This is a much needed, new kind of power for today and the future.
What I’ve come to understand about true power is that it’s integrated, with a harmonious balance of Sacred Masculine and Sacred Feminine qualities.
The masculine qualities are mostly about “what we do and our ability to do it,” while the feminine qualities have to do with “how we do it” or our way of being in the process of doing.
We all have the ability to do things. This is inherent. It’s a given. But how we do things is entirely changeable.
We have complete freedom to choose how we show up to take action.
The Sacred Feminine is where our freedom lies. She’s the wisdom behind all action. She’s the root of all expression. If She’s neglected, out of balance, or stunted, She’ll express as withdrawal or manipulation.
So how do we integrate our power?
First, we must recognize what we’re doing and how we’re doing things currently. You can’t determine how to get where you want to go without being clear on where you are to begin with.
This is actually more challenging than it may seem because it requires that we see the whole picture. Sometimes we don’t want to see what we’re actually doing or how we’re doing it. We have fear around seeing the truth because if the truth is out of alignment with who we are or what we value, we’ll be “haunted” by this truth until we address it.
Are you ready to see the truth? Are you ready to embrace it with the understanding that it can be worked with and transformed if it’s not in alignment with your highest self?
To see the truth, you must look at all aspects of your being.
How are you showing up emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually?
Once you see how you’re showing up in each of these ways, the next thing to do is to determine if each of these aspects of your being are coherent with each other. Are these aspects of yourself in integrity or wholeness with each other? Are they on the same page?
If you’re physically doing something for someone, but emotionally feeling resentful, and mentally telling yourself how stupid you are for doing it or how irritating the other person is for making you feel like you have to do it, you’re not in coherence. The aspects of your being are not “sticking together” in unison or harmony.
Ultimately, we want our thoughts (masculine) and emotions (feminine) to integrate so that our will can be a harmonious expression of masculine and feminine in alignment with Sacred Spirit.
Our true power comes from a place of neutrality, awareness and discernment that integrates all aspects of our being, and all aspects of what we are facing.
Empowerment is knowing what shape or form our power must take to meet the circumstance we’re presented with, and how to most wisely use it.
True empowerment, true inner power, is about showing up fully, embracing what is, understanding what’s possible, and taking wise action to move toward a higher vision.
Where are you now? Are you tuned into your inner power?
What vision do you have for yourself? Can you see what might require integration in order for you to fully embrace and embody your true power?
I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please share in the comments, or send me a note as to how you see and express your inner power.
Be coherently powerful!