This suggested reading list provides examples of various fields which give an insight into the duality of active and receptive energies (or masculine and feminine) present in all human beings regardless of their gender identity. Some also give an insight into how the active, or masculine, has been suppressed in women and the receptive, or feminine, suppressed in men, thus causing much suffering to both genders, and aggressiveness and violence in the world. Also included is an example of what can be accomplished when the active and receptive energies are balanced.
Fuller, Margaret, Woman in the 19th Century (Dover Thrift Edition, 1999, Kindle version available). Originally published in July 1843 in The Dial magazine as "The Great Lawsuit. Man versus Men. Woman Versus Women", it was later expanded and re-published in book form in 1845. Fuller is an American journalist, critic, and women's rights advocate associated with the American transcendentalism movement, Her work is a classic of feminist literature and goes beyond gender equality in that, in her own words: "Male and female represent the two sides of the great radical dualism. But in fact they are perpetually passing into one another. Fluid hardens to solid, solid rushes to fluid. There is no wholly masculine man, no purely feminine woman."
Hucknall, Nanette and Judith Bach, Ph. D., The Rose and the Sword (MSI Press, LLC, 2013; Kindle version available). Through fiction stories with four archetypal characters this book illustrates the negative and positive aspects of our feminine and masculine energies, and provides exercises at the end of each chapter to balance them.
Jung, Emma, Anima and Animus (Spring Publications, 1978). Jung is a Swiss psychotherapist and author, wife of Carl Gustav Jung, founder of Analytical Psychology. In her writing she explains that the Anima, or “soul”, “breath of life”, is the Archetype symbolizing the unconscious female component of the male psyche. Animus is the Archetype symbolizing the unconscious male component of the female psyche. Acceptance of both components within ourselves helps us become whole human beings.
Kimmel, Michael S., Manhood in America: A Cultural History (Oxford University Press, 2011). Kimmel is an American sociologist. In this book you will learn how manhood has been constructed and portrayed in America, and how it has wrongly been equated with toughness, thus crushing down man’s humanity.
“Muhammad, Legacy of a Prophet”, (Unity Productions Foundation and Kikim Media, 2002) aired on PBS in December 2002; video and transcript available from www.pbs.org. This work helps uncover the truth about the Prophet’s attitude towards women. Unlike current interpretations of his Teachings, this documentary depicts his attitude towards women was respectful and egalitarian. He condemned female infanticides.
Okun, Rob A., Voice Male: The Untold Story of the Male Pro-feminist Men's Movement, (Interlink Pub Group 2014, Kindle edition available). This book reveals the emergence of men who can express their sensitivity without fear and team up with women to create a safer world for all.
Reticker, Giny (Director) Disney, Abigail E. (Producer) Johnson's, Kirsten (Director of Photography) “Pray the Devil Back to Hell” (Fork Films, 2008). Aired on PBS in 2011. The film features Nobel Peace Prize Winner Leymah Gbowee and is the story of the Liberian women, ordinary mothers, grandmothers, aunts and daughters, both Christian and Muslim, who took action and peacefully brought an end to the regime of Charles Taylor and a brutal civil war. DVD available on amazon.com.
Sayers, Dorothy, Are Women Human? (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. 2005, Kindle version available). Sayers is an author, English crime writer, poet, playwright, essayist, translator and Christian Humanist. Originally written in 1938 and published in 1947, this essay is still relevant to today’s gender issues for it invites men and women to be true to their humanity rather than to their sex, and provides an insight on how, 2000 years ago, Jesus treated women equally as men.
“Humanity should realize the majestic cosmic law of equivalency, the law of the Dual Origin, as the foundation of existence. The predominance of one Origin over the other has created a lack of balance and destruction, which may now be observed in all of life.” - Letters of Helena Roerich, Volume 1, October 7, 1930.
Get involved by attending or scheduling a talk or film screening and discussion group on Gender Equality and Respect for All. Share a story that reflects on how you balanced your Active and Receptive qualities.