‘Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?’
At some point in our lives, most of us feel the gentle calling of our soul. Sometimes it’s so quiet we can barely hear it – a soft tapping. No louder than a leaf falling from a tree.
We may imagine we didn’t hear it. Or perhaps it is louder and takes the form of a persistent ache, a nagging sense that there is something missing. ‘Is this it?’ we wonder when we wake in the dead of night or find ourselves caught in the treadmill of our daily grind.
It may be a hint of loneliness that endures even in the company of friends. Or a sense of injustice and a desire to change things that feels urgent and necessary, but also hopeless before it even begins.
Perhaps our heart tells us there is a better way of living, that we need to stop ignoring what really matters – the suffering of others and our planet’s future – but our head insists we’re naïve and tells us to knuckle down and get on with our lives as they are.
For others the call may take the form of a crisis – a break-up or breakdown, a betrayal or loss. Or perhaps it’s addiction, depression, or another serious illness.
However it comes, it is an invitation to take a journey. You may resist. Many of us have resisted it for years, even decades. Ultimately it’s your choice. But it will wait for you patiently, tapping daily or every so often in small and big ways to remind you that, in truth, you can’t avoid it if you truly want to live a meaningful life.
If you’ve heard that call, this book is for you. It’s for women who want happiness and meaning. It will guide you towards the path to inner peace and provide the power to help transform the world in which we all live.
WE is a journey based on a set of nine principles that have been taught by sages and saints throughout the ages and which have the power to transform your life and the world around you.
It isn’t a lifestyle choice to be bolted onto our normal me-centred way of living; it’s a path of radical transformation that puts compassion for the world at its core.
Use this book both as a guide and a source of inspiration. If you’re hurting, it will help you heal. If you’re lost, it will guide you home. If you’re searching for a purpose, it will gently lead you towards fulfilment.
We arrive in this world without instruction manuals and we grow up without an emotional toolkit. So it’s easy to lose our way.
As we go through life we amass emotional scar tissue from the knocks that we inevitably take. We become like electrical circuit boards that have got so clogged up by the silt of life that we can no longer connect with ourselves and our core beliefs, let alone with the world beyond.
All of us start out in life with a strong internal value system – a sense of what’s right and wrong and what’s fair and what’s unjust. But then life intervenes. In the cold light of reality our ideals can quickly seem naïve, unrealistic and untenable. However strong and heartfelt our intentions, it’s hard to give effect to our beliefs when we’re struggling, stressed or in emotional pain.
Before long we’ve abandoned those values in favour of the rules we’re taught by the world. Succeed, compete and accumulate. Deep down we feel conflicted, but at the end of the day we each have to get by, don’t we?
A gulf emerges between the values we choose for our personal lives and those we live by in the world at large. In our homes and families we believe in sharing and making sure everyone’s OK. But once we step outside our front door the rules change. The common good is replaced with the quest for personal success. Within seconds we dissolves into me and we’re elbowing each other out of the way in the race to get to the finishing line. Only, of course, there isn’t one – just a horizon that moves further away the closer we get.
The Nine Principles in this book heal our wounds and return us to our centre. As you learn to apply them to your life one by one, you will be taken on a journey from me to WE. Loneliness will evaporate. You will discover a sense of purpose and you will be freed – freed to live a life that is authentic, happy and meaningful.
We: A Manifesto for Women Everywhere
WE: A Manifesto for Women Everywhere is an uplifting, inspirational, and intensely practical manual for change, providing nine universal principles that offer a path for dealing with life's inevitable emotional and spiritual challenges. It's for anyone who wants to see her own life and the world around her change for the better.
By combining tools that are psychological, political and spiritual, WE takes readers on a life-changing journey. It asks: Why are so many of us—and our daughters—still, in the 21st century, locked in depression and addiction, self-criticism, and even self-harm? How much more effective and powerful would we all be if we replaced our current patterns of competition, criticism, and comparison with collaboration, cooperation, and compassion?
Putting these principles at the center of our lives offers an antidote to our me-first culture and allows each of us to be freer and happier, and to replace unhelpful habits with a more positive, peaceful, and rewarding way of living. WE is a rallying cry for women to join together and create lasting change in our own lives, our communities, and across the world.
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