Community Update

Digital Empowerment Toolkit Now Available!

At World Pulse, we recognize the need for ongoing learning—for you and for your community! Our toolkits aim to provide the resources you need to advance your social change work.

We are excited to introduce our Digital Empowerment Trainers’ Toolkit, a dynamic resource to help you bring the benefits of connecting online to women in your community. Check it out today! »

Dreaming in the Dark!

Happy Winter Solstice,

I write Winter Solstice to be in sisterhood today with all the women globally. While some of us are celebrating Christmas today in another part of the world its just another day. So, if I say Merry Christmas I feel disconnected from the world especially since the actual holiday is not a part of my culture anyway. However, we can all celebrate the winter solstice even though it might be summer wherever you are at and from where ever you are I can say look up to the sky and see the moon, feel the darkness descending as the night hits, feel the transitions of climates and the environmental changes on your body, and light a candle to connect with your spirits, your ancestors and me. With the celebration of the Winter Solstice we can send eachother energy from where we are and hold eachothers hand as we Dream in the Dark.

This is what the Winter Solstice means to me living here in America, its the transition from Fall to Winter , when darkness hits the earth and we as women sleep. Not literally though, we are metaphorically suppose to be hibernating right now. Taking a moment to breathe, to go within and meet the crone. The Crone is the wise women within all of us, she helps us to dream. This is why I call this time "Dreaming in the Dark". Going back into the womb of mother earth, here she keeps us safe but it is also here in the darkness that we, that I, face my deepest fears. The darkness is not the just the abscence of light, it is also for some of us the most scariest place becuase we cannot see. When we loose our eyesight all we have is our ability to dream, to imagine....for me dreaming and imagining, means that I let me brain playback for me my life as if its a movie and the internal voices that keep me powerless have space to talk. It is during Winter that I come face to face with my fears.

It makes sense though since I was abandoned before I was even born. So the womb for me is a lonely place. And as the winter moves through the months and the light comes back, and I move down the birth canal its gets even harder becuase I dont want to be born in the Spring. I dont want to come into a motherless world. So, I fight, I fight all winter to stay safe in the womb even though its the most scariest place be.

I invite you to think about what fears you hold onto?, what situations that no longer serve you do you hold onto becuase they are safe?, yet, its to hard to let them go becaue if you do its too scary. You find yourself saying well at least I know this place well, and if I let them go I have to open up myself to something new. Yes, something else might be better for you, but the thought that its new, that you dont know it, or how its going to be keep the old realtionship, thought, situation, pattern or behavior in your life. Better the old that you know how to deal with then something new.

This year though, Dreaming in the Dark has yet another meaning. I recently went to Guatemala and while I have traveled outside the states and to other international countries before, nothing yet has impacted me more than this trip. I realized on this trip that living here in America has kept me safe, insultated to a media that controls what I see and hear. Since my return I have searched the TV for global news, I searched for my story , my sisters storys , your stories in the local media (the radio, newspapers, magazines, music and TV ), but i dont find them, I dont see them and I dont here them. I didnt add the web beause still not everyone in my community has access to it.

So yes, this year, I am dreaming in the dark, literally. I am in shock, amazed, horrified and afraid for myself and my children as to what my world is going to look like if I stay in this country. I think if i didnt have access to the web, and even if , if someone doesnt direct me to the right sources, I probably would not have known about places like world pulse. Its funny how America talks about socialism, communisim etc as if its doing any thing different. Access, Freedom, I mean really. I dont know about anything happening in the world expect the crimes, the war, the terrorism or natural disasters that happen and then we get bombarded with it so much that we are afraid to travel outside the states and we become decensitized to all of it anyway. Creating stories and opinions of places, of people and cultures with no relevance and with no valid information. We then visit these countries with so much ignorance and arrogance all at the same time. I say these countries becuase in my travels to Guate I was told I was from the North and I was like yes from the North Side of the Dominican Republic,Puerto Plata.Instead they where telling me that my identity since I am living in America is that I am now considered from North America. I couldnt believe it, here i am, an immigrant in North America , a women, lesbian, latina immigrant in North America fighting everyday to be seen and heard, fighting for my rights, against injustice, and all types of wars in this patriachal, xenaphobic country and here I am in my own land and I am being called North American, I wanted to die. But I couldnt agrue. I have been sitting with it ever since. And now sharing it with you.

I went to Guatemala and I had global news. People there knew what was happening all over the world, in Latin, South, Central and North America. I felt so disconnected. I couldnt live up to the American Stantards. Somehow people expected me to know , I mean dont I have access to everything? Then, I realized I dont and if I did I would not know how to access it becuase the poverty, the digital divided, the educational divide is so big. Instead of living up to those expectations I found my self defending all the people of color in the states, undoing myths that people had of us, defending immigrants , education, access etc. And the more I did that, the more I spoke, the realization of how oppressed , controled and manipulated we are here in the states and the role that the media as a governmental institution has on pertuating the divide and misinformation or lack thereof came to life.

I ran home, I ran home to save myself, to save my children and my community. I wanted to have my own show, to travel and document, to write, to be the eyes so we dont have to dream in the dark. During this holiday, during this winter solstice, during the Christmas I want to give all of you a cheering thankyou for telling your stories, for creating another media by and for the people, for writing, for posting, for sharing and making a commitment to be who you are no matter what so women dont ever have to dream in the dark......

Comments

Potter's picture

Dreaming

You are dreaming with your eyes wide open! I really enjoyed your post. So much to think about and all beautifully said!

For you dear Sister with power to feel the world,
for you connected with ancestors and ready to work day and night.
For you dear sister who feels all sisters around her,
For you, I will light a candle.
And you have given me many thoughts.
You have opened your life so that we can share and live.
For you,
I will light many, many candles with love.

Your sister with eyes lighting up.. from the light in yours.

"Communication is the real work of leadership" Nitin Nohria

sarah.s.hope's picture

I love what you've said..

...especially about everyone here at Pulsewire creating another media. Well said! It is a media of Truth and Justice and Love, and I share your gratitude for everyone here who is sharing and daring to co-create a world that reflects those same values. Traveling to other places challenges our own perspectives as well as our sense of place, of where we come from and what we are a part of, whether or not we want to be. I think it's such a gift to be able to travel.
We humans have an amazing, either beautiful or frightening ability to create our own reality. We have to choose wisely, and for now we have to live in the reality that others before us have not so wisely chosen. It is not easy at all to change that reality, but it is not impossible. You are so right in what you observe about our U.S. culture and the way the media presents their version of our reality, which is both inaccurate and manipulative. You are a truth seeker! Me, too. And I have found it is hard and sometimes lonely ( because sometimes it feels like everyone around me believes the lies) and it is often depressing. But, as you said, there is also so much good news that is hidden from us! We are kept in the dark and kept in fear because then we are easier to manipulate and persuade. We must shine the light on all the good things that are happening, on the positive influence and power of individuals and groups that work to create a good, sustainable life for themselves and others.
I find that I have to be brave enough to go into that darkness and shine light, reveal, the hidden truth, or shine the light of love where there has been pain or suffering. Sometimes I find things hiding within my own shadow, things I'd rather keep hidden, but must face. I can only heal the old wounds if I go into the dark to get them, to bring them out into the light where I can heal them. I also have to be strong enough to not get sucked under by the heaviness of it all. I have to remember that I am sacred and that I carry the light of love and hope within me, right where the Goddess put it, so that it cannot be blown out by anyone or other things around me.
I've also learned that the darkness represents the underworld or sometimes death, not physical death, but often the need to let go of something I've held onto. Like you said, we hold on to the things which are familiar, rather than face the mystery and uncertainty of what's to come. That's where we have to trust our own sacredness, our inner light and Spirit/God/Goddess, that in allowing the old things to die, we open space for new things to be created, for new realities. I call on certain ancestors, angels, and certain goddesses to accompany me and guide me into and out of the darkness. I leave a thread, like Ariadne did when she entered the labyrinth. My thread might be a drumbeat or a certain song or a picture of something that makes me smile, something that will help to guide me back to the light or to my earth bound soul's purpose. Like the Goddess Innana, I ask a trusted friend to help to call me back if I stay there too long. Sometimes, like these short winter days, like the new moon completely hidden every month, I know that I have to go into that darkness, that there are things in there I am meant to uncover, layers I must shed, the wounds of patriarchy and the armor of illusions and ego, in order to reveal who I really am, in order to shine my light as brightly as I can for others, in order to say out loud that I will not hide or be hidden.
I see in you a courageous woman who has the power and love to dream in, through, and beyond the darkness. Thank you so much for sharing your journey and shining your light! ~Sarah

Nusrat Ara's picture

A wonderful post. In my part

A wonderful post. In my part of world right now there are no celebrations and holidays. Life just moves on.

Your post makes one to turn the gaze inwards at the same time one wants to look out far too. Thanks for the post and do keep posting.

Love

Nusrat

Iffat Gill's picture

Wow, this is amazing. I aways

Wow, this is amazing. I always wondered how the national media can keep the masses under darkness, I mean it is an extremely difficult task where you have so many outlets for news. Yet, they still manage to influence and create a certain mindset. I enjoyed reading your post.

Best.

Iffat Gill

Tina's picture

Love and Pride

Dear Dayanara,
Your words move me, inspire me and enlighten me as always. I love to read and journey with you through your thoughts and you have provided much food for mine.
I think it is hard for us immigrants to hear that others in our home countries now see us as North Americans. I've had this experience too and it certainly jars. But I wonder why? Do we try so hard to hold onto our motherlands that we dare not let ourselves be shaped by the new land in which we live? Or is it that we too have fallen prey to the negativity surrounding North American (western) Culture that we, being the sensitive worldly people that we strive to be, would never dream of being a part of the patriarchal, dominant, superior, materialist and violent life we're told is what North America is really about; and yet here we are living amidst the darkness anyway as you say, dreaming and searching for the glimmer of real truth.
A sixteen year old boy got stabbed in the neck just two blocks away from my house here in the Bronx last week - too close to where my children walk to school every day. Horrendous, horrible. Some people (and the media of course) say it was gang violence. He was a troublemaker and so forth as if somehow living and being a troubled teen in the Bronx is cause to be stabbed in the neck. I could move out into the suburbs I suppose where it would be more peaceful perhaps. There is violence and darkness everywhere I am sure, but I choose not to focus on it. I focus instead on all the wonderful people I live and love alongside here instead and because of them and all that I learn from them living here every day I can't imagine being anyplace else.
It was hard for me to find my voice here too, to have it heard, to even find a place where it fit and belonged and could take shape at all. Though I couldn't imagine finding it at all if I'd stayed in my home country. So as difficult as it was being here, finding my way here, finding my voice at all, I found it amplified it here anyway and so did you. (xx)
So maybe, just maybe we should find a new way to think of our selves as part North Americans now, a way to be proud - because for all its troubles and the despair this land carries, it also has made us more fully ourselves than I certainly ever dreamed could be possible.
A belated Happy winter solstice to you dear Dee. May this year bring you love and pride.
Best
Tina

Magazine »

Read global coverage through women's eyes

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Community »

Connect with women on the ground worldwide

Myra Musico: My Disability Is Not an Obstacle

Myra Musico: My Disability Is Not an Obstacle

Campaigns »

Be heard at influential forums

WWW: Women Weave the Web

WWW: Women Weave the Web

Programs »

Help us train women citizen journalists

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

Blog »

Read the latest from World Pulse headquarters

EMAGAZINE: Bridging Borders

EMAGAZINE: Bridging Borders

Partners »

Join forces with our wide network of partners

Nobel Women's Initiative

Nobel Women's Initiative