There is a documentary called The Ascent of Woman that you can find on Netflix that I highly recommend. It tells of the power and place women held BEFORE it was taken away and our treatment as second-class citizens began. It’s a fascinating account of how we, women, were not just gatherers or a womb for giving life, but we were also warriors and Empresses.
Among the interesting facts, I discovered a real gem. The world’s first full-length novel was written in the early 11th century by a Japanese woman named Murasaki Shikibu. It’s titled The Tale of Genji and is lovingly housed in a museum in Japan. I would love to see this amazing and important artifact.
I was very taken in by how women were once held high in the world of two sexes. I’d actually never been aware of that truth. Especially since I’ve never known such a world, being born into a time that still treats women as second-class citizens to some extent. Sure, we’ve made excellent progress over the years of fighting for equality, but we still have some heavy lifting to do if we ever wish for our status to return to where it was many hundreds of years ago.
Don’t mistake me for being of the mind that women can “do anything a man can do”. What I believe – and this history I speak of shows – is that women have distinct abilities that do not limit us, but when accessed, raise us up and do the world a service.
As one example, the documentary tells of a time when women were warriors. Graves and the artifacts in these graves have shown that women’s skills were tapped into and utilized far beyond childbirth and nurturing a family (though those things are no less important). Specifically, women were (and likely still are) highly skilled at using the bow and arrows. Snipers, skilled with a weapon that did not require physical strength, yet was just as powerful and deadly.
The bottom line here? The history of women is rich and amazing with examples of how we are equal to male counterparts in ways that don’t require us to have the same skills. Men are amazing and wonderful creatures, strong and intelligent. And women are amazing, wonderful beings with intelligence and skills also to be celebrated equally.
How men and women approach a task or a problem is often quite different, depending on several factors, but the common thread is that both sexes can and do reach the same outcome. That is where we are “equal”.