I woke up the other day feeling compelled to move the energy of the color pink. But what I was feeling in my womb space and creative kundalini fire wasn't a shamanic animal totem energy, a plant medicine journey piece, or a sacred codes piece. It was a movement of power, of pure joy and bliss, of radical fun, and of acknowledgement of the Divine Feminine and her role as creator and leader. It was an inner awareness that it is time for me to put all energy in motion in order to birth the new paradigm of Divine Feminine. The one that has nothing to do with feminism. (If you want to read my most recent piece on why we must divorce ourselves from feminism, you can find that on lianashanti.com HERE )
You see, we've had thousands of years of the patriarchy manifesting the 3d world of form, through the channels of the mind, the ego, including the world of art. I know that brain world so well, almost too well that I almost fell for its trickery. Having lived an almost entirely academic life for close to 30 years, which started by reading my first book at the age of 2 and picking "The Human Brain" (a medical school textbook) as my very first library choice. I was fascinated by the brain, and decided that I wanted to be a neurosurgeon to "work on brains". My Italian grandfather Accursio, "Gus" would pat me on the head and say "sweetheart, you will be a brilliant lawyer". I was annoyed. I didn't even know what a lawyer was way back then.
I remember not understanding a lot of the book and asking my mom to explain terms (she was a nurse). Sometimes she would just say, "I have no idea". I thought that was awful. How could a grown up have no idea? It frustrated me when there was no answer. Being placed in the gifted program because my IQ was "unmanageable" by my "regular" teachers (yes that is the word they used) was kind of a reprieve. But not much. My elementary gifted teacher wasn't actually that gifted. No offense to her, but she truly had no idea what to do with a person who didn't think like everyone else. She just thought being gifted meant to give the kid more work. So I got more work. A lot more. More math, more science, more reading, more writing. And I was bored to tears. It wasn't until 6th grade when I was placed into a program with an amazing woman who was an artist. We did calligraphy, we read Jonathan Livingston Seagull, we took trips to Boston and Washington, DC and only did "academic" subjects on three days of the week. The other two days were for projects we designed.
I went on to be a pre-med major (still had not wavered on my desire to be a neurosurgeon) also studying philosophy, theology, biblical archeology, classical civilization, and majoring in biochemistry on the road to medical school. After taking a class in my last year of college on "The Most Dangerous Branch" (of government), which included a visit to the Supreme Court, I immediately decided to take the LSAT and apply to law school. The rest as they say, was herstory. I chose law school instead and had a deeply brain-oriented career as a corporate wall street lawyer.
So you can see how I got sucked into the belief that the mind was the apparatus through which you could uncover the answers to life's questions.
But I always loved the color pink. And I use the word "but" deliberately because for some reason, people never seemed to take the color pink seriously. I know that sounds weird, but I also know that you know what I mean. I was a very serious little girl on many levels and made sure of it that everyone took me seriously. But you would never know it from how I dressed or decorated my bedroom, according to the feedback given to me by friends, peers and teachers. My parents allowed me decorate however I wanted, so I always had a canopy bed, with white eyelet draped canopy, pink chiffon side curtains, and pink and white bedspread. I had lots of pink and lavender satin pillows hanging from my ceiling, clouds with rainbows, hearts and unicorns.
I loved those satin pillows so much that I actually started making them and turned it into a side hustle in second grade. I made good money on that first entrepreneurial venture. Of course, my dad provided the funds to buy the materials, and my grandmother, a seamstress, would go to work on her old Singer sewing machine and make them for me. But I designed them, and sold them to all my friends at school. At Valentine's Day one year I made a HUGE pink heart, about three feet in diameter, and decided to hold a school raffle for it. I made so much money from that raffle, and the kids loved it because it was only $1 to have a chance to win. But then the school shut down my business, saying the raffle concept was against school policy. I gave it some time and then moved on to weaving friendship bracelets from colored plastic strings, and calligraphy hearts that would say "Ginny and Dale" or whatever classmate of mine was in love with a boy and wanted a calligraphy heart on her notebook. My pricing structure was interesting. I charged per letter, and extra if you wanted a design on the outside of the heart or just a plain heart. Discount if you got more than one.
I loved pink clothes and always wanted pink fluffy sweaters, pink tights, pink hair clips. Sometime around the age of three or four, I took a few shades of pink nailpolish and painted little girl faces with pigtails on my closet doors. All 4 doors. 4 girl faces. In nailpolish. That was an interesting evening. When my mom smelled the nailpolish odor coming from my bedroom she became alarmed, and rightfully so. She saw my artwork on the wood closets and called my dad. They stood there in a bit of shock, my mom trying to investigate the carpet to see if any had spilled on the carpet. It hadn't. I was a neat nailpolish artist. They weren't angry, and they praised my work. My dad appreciated the art a bit more than mom, but I think that's because he himself was an artist. Not in the traditional sense, he was actually a self-made entrepreneur involved in real estate development. But he raced cars, motorcycles and boats, and owned a huge commercial garage where he would do some incredible paint jobs with these massive spray paint machines on the sides of his cars, bikes and boats. I loved to watch but he made me watch from the window in his office because he didn't want me breathing those fumes. I would ask, but then why are YOU breathing those fumes? He would tell me that he already smoked three packs of cigarettes a day so he wasn't worried about paint. But I had "clean" lungs. He did eventually quit. (The cigarettes, not the paint.)
As I got older I collected pink and purple stickers. LOTS of them. I went through a Lisa Frank phase, a "puffy glitter" phase (if you were a kid in the 80's you probably remember those puffy glitter filled stickers), and I had whole photo albums just filled with hundreds of stickers. In school though, that seemed to be a contradiction. I remember one time I told my teacher how her method of teaching division was flat out silly, and she came to my desk and handed me the chalk and asked me to show a better way. This was her subtle form of trying to embarrass me. Luckily for me I actually did know a shorter and easier way to teach division and so I did. One boy named Kenny thanked me. He said he was confused before and now wasn't. I kind of had a crush on Kenny so this was awesome. On the other hand, my teacher was annoyed. She quickly shushed me from going on, and told me to return to my seat. After class she called me up to her metal desk that had a fake ficus plant and a plastic apple that said "number one teacher" on it, and told me that I looked like such a nice and sweet girl it was a shame I was so sassy. She was definitely NOT a number one teacher in my book.
That was not the first nor the last time someone commented that how I "looked" versus how I spoke/acted/behaved was surprising, unexpected or contradictory. Even as a lawyer in my 20's many people (both women and men) assumed before hearing me speak, that I was someone's secretary.
Somewhere along the lines I stopped wearing pink. I came to believe that my blonde hair, blue eyes AND pink was just be too much for people. I tried to break out one year when Prada came out with a line of lavender colored bags in its nylon range. Not pink, but still in my wheelhouse. I bought the lavender backpack and brought it to work. My best friend at the time - 5'11, short brown hair, black and grey pantsuit wearing, U Penn grad, laughed until she snorted at my purchase. She thought I bought it as a joke. She said, come on, are you REALLY going to walk into a meeting with that bag? Are you going to load your files up and get into the Dial Car on the way downtown with that bag? (Dial Car was the chauffeured car service our firm used to get around town). The bag ended up in the back of my closet.
This was also a time and an environment in which many women were rejecting pink or anything perceived as distinctly female. It was a time where it was "more hip" to be into everything dark. Darkness, the shadows, the shock value of graphic imagery, the pretentious lure of being "conflicted", "pained", "a sufferer"... the time of the cocaine-thin models dangling cigarettes from their pale lips, it was just more...well...hip to occupy a darker space with your aesthetic.
For me this was also the world of mergers and acquisitions, multi-billion dollar deals, and 60-70 hour work weeks. It was time to be professional on every level and pink was just not part of that. I did have a huge pink quartz crystal fountain in my office that stood two feet tall, with a round amethyst sphere that would spin around by the force of the water. But in my world at that time, that was the only visible remnant of my colorful self, other than one pink Chanel skirt suit that I would wear for client brunches on rare occasions, only in summer, and only with certain clients that I knew well. There were rules about pink. But the rest of the time I was in the obligatory New York drab navy, grey, and black with perhaps a splash of red top or red shoe. To be anything other would have been categorized as tacky.
Once I moved to Hawaii, I began to reconnect with pink. I bought pink sundresses, pink swimsuits, pink Versace sunglasses (which I still have), and a number of pink pairs of shoes. It's not like everything I owned was pink, because it wasn't. I actually love black too. But, I introduced pink back into my life in a big way.
In the past few years on my path as a Shaman and Spiritual Teacher, I have worked almost exclusively with women who are in the process of shedding their old skins, dropping old stories, releasing old pain and healing old wounds that still drive their fears and doubts. MANY of those women have told me they HATE the color pink. Hate is such a strong word, but I heard it enough times that I really began to contemplate why that is. Why do they HATE a color? Any color? And why is PINK the color that most commonly gets rejected by these women? I have had women tell me they would NEVER wear pink, they would never paint with pink, decorate with pink, or even give their baby a pink toy. But WHY?
There are whole websites, blogs, and debates about how the brainwashing marketing campaigns use pink to signify "girls" toys, with lot of backlash from ardent feminists who go on about the fact that girls can have blue toys too, and that a color shouldn't signify a gender. Seeing as how October is just around the corner, we will soon be seeing loads of pink ribbons from the cancer scam known as the Susan B. Komen foundation, which co-opted the color pink to signify breast cancer awareness. I won't get started on that treacherous deceptive tactic here. But just google "pink ribbon facade Truth About Cancer" when you have some free time to go down a dark rabbit hole.
Pink has always been with us, but it was not always as gender-identified as it is today. Back in the 1700s, men and women wore pink. Many paintings from that era show men in pink. In A Journey Around My Room, by French writer Xavier de Maistre, he puts pink into male dreams. He recommends that men have pink and white bedrooms to brighten their moods.
Believe it or not, a June 1918 article from the trade publication Earnshaw's Infants' Department said, “The generally accepted rule is pink for the boys, and blue for the girls. The reason is that pink, being a more decided and stronger color, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl.” Time magazine printed a chart in 1927 that told parents what colors were gener-appropriate. In Boston, Filene’s told parents to dress boys in pink. So did Best & Co. in New York City, Halle’s in Cleveland and Marshall Field in Chicago.
It wasn't until post-World War Two that pink began to symbolize gender profiling of girls. And of course, the women’s liberation movement ofthe 1960's brought a powerful anti-feminine, anti-fashion message, where unisex styling became very popular. For two years in the 1970's the Sears catalog had no pink toddler clothing. In the 80's, things changed with the huge popularity of prenatal gender testing, parents could learn the sex of their unborn baby and shop for "girl” or “boy” merchandise. Marketers know that the more you individualize something, the more you can sell to a target market. The fad spread and went wild and for the most part, has continued.
I came to understand that with all of this energy surrounding the color pink, what it means, its obvious connection to the vagina, the rejection of the Divine Feminine, the manipulative use of the color pink by ad agencies and marketing campaigns, the breast cancer awareness connection and the full on rejection by many women of anything overly "girly" has resulted in a larger-than-I-realized dislike of the color pink.
In the world of energy and spirituality, the vibration of the color pink holds the resonance ofNew Birth, and the Womb. That's why I chose a dark pink for the logo of Sacred Chalice Art, Chalice being the womb. Pink also relates to unconditional love, and the power to birth, which is the most powerful creative force in existence. So in essence, pink is the most powerful color. I invite you to contemplate pink in your life, and if you have ever had an aversion or a particular liking to it, and if so why? Most importantly, what does pink make you FEEL? My Taking Back Pink Series of paintings will continue and all be offered in my shop update coming up in September, I'm so excited!