We Need To Talk About Lilith…


Agnès Varda‘s Vagabond

With asteroid Lilith- the maiden energy- on the IC (roots) of Friday’s full moon chart, it is a good time to look at how we handle the energy, especially sexual energy, of the young feminine.
After writing about Lilith yesterday, I watched a film with strong Lilith themes: Agnes Varda’s ‘Vagabond’ is a poignant portrayal of Mona, a young Lilith-like character in her dark moon phase- that is in exiled from civilized society. ‘Vagabond’, or ‘Sans Toit ni loi’ (with neither shelter nor law) is the story of a young woman as she wanders through the Languedoc- Roussillon wine region one winter, living as a vagabond and social outcast.
Mona is semi-feral, unconcerned with the ways of the world, and has no interest in being part of a society where, as she sees it, personal freedom is traded for security. Having previously been a ‘wage slave’ as a secretary, Mona is devoid of all ambition except the most basic survival- though she is also shown in poetic and tender moments where we glimpse her relationship with a beauty often missed by other people. As she meets a host of characters, we get an impression of the affect the Lilith-type woman has on those around her- sometimes, pity, sometimes a barely realised envy.
Mona drifts form place to place, and man to man without attachment or personal desire beyond survival and a need to be free. Sometimes she sells sex, and she is raped (off screen), but Mona takes it all in her stride knowing that as long as she keeps on moving, she will be okay.
There is no back story of why Mona has chosen a life on the road, but she has no intention of settling down. Even when she is offered land, shelter and kindness from back-to-the- land type people, Mona shows no interest in investing herself, or creating goals- she simply wants to be free. If there is a sense that Mona walks with a tormented past or traumatic wound that prevent her from fitting in, it is invisible… well hidden beneath her layers of dirty clothes and tough exterior. But in my mind at least the film raises questions about the reason for the original split, and why some women are unable, or unwilling, to mould themselves into a society where the price of security is simply too high. It also raises questions about available options for women who are without financial support, or the means to make their way in a system that they, for whatever reason, cannot be part of.
I watch this film, 34 years after its making (1985), and a few years after France legally recognises prostitution as violence against women. In 2016, the French national assembly passed a law that decriminalizes those who are prostituted and criminalizes prostitute users. This has been a controversial move that has incited much opinion but still there is no real engagement with the deeper meaning of prostitution, or how in our cultural history we have moved from sex a sacred rite to the abuses and degradation of the sex industry.
Yesterday, I wrote about the ‘dark continent of the sexual life of adult women’, though I suspect it is even darker than Freud knew when he wrote that comment in 1926. The paradox of female sexuality is that if it has been violated or damaged too early it sets up a pattern where the sexual energy is disrupted and highly charged but with no grounding. Women who have been on a journey to heal their wounded sexuality often report a split between their behaviour and feelings. Energetically, the second, or sacral charka is too open and active. The base chakra (grounding) and the solar plexus (personal will) is also often imbalanced. A sacral chakra that has been blown open too early, and without personal will or grounding leads to cycles of the energy centres being retraumatised until it is healed- though sometimes these patterns have been passed inter-generationally down a long line and take a lot of work. In this case the auric field emits a vibration that attracts equally disrupted or abusive energy. Psychotherapy that deals only with the mind is limited in how far it can offer healing- these are wounds of the soul and it is the subtle energy body that needs to be worked on.
If we nurture young girls and their energy from the start, instead of passing on the inherited sexual repression, or unhealed sexual trauma much of the devastation of the Lilith- type issues can be avoided. Girls need to learn that they are in control of their essential energy, and that it does not belong to anyone else… including and especially the cultural ‘image makers’.
Asteroid Lilith appears on the IC of Friday’s full moon chart opening an opportunity to look back at how the young feminine is shaped in our current society. From girls being sexualised too young either through the image makers, or sexual violation, disturbance the subtle and physical body of girls can create a feeling of being ‘homeless’ inside. The vacancy created renders girls vulnerable to further invasion and abuse. When due to a disrupted energy, the behaviour of the girl is unruly, promiscuous, or rebellious, the girls are further rejected. And this is the Lilith wound- without a home-base to come back to, the danger is a of being lost to oneself on a continual loop of attracting events, people and experiences that match the distortions in the subtle body.
Both boys and girls are wounded but there is something particular to the wounding of the young feminine in our current culture, and it’s a conversation we need to have.

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