DEAR WOMAN: I Surrender!

When I asked Kalpna to marry me, I didn’t get down on one knee. I got down on both knees. 

This wasn’t planned. It just kind of happened. 

We’ve joked about it since. 

“Remember when I was on my knees begging you to marry me?” 

Jokes aside though, over the years, I’ve reflected a number of times on why my getting down on both knees and looking up at my then-girlfriend emerged from my unconscious as the most appropriate position for me to ask for her hand in marriage from. 

One of the things I came to know well, starting at a young age, is my power. I have known my capacity to bend reality in my favor and all the fruits that come with that. I have known also though, how without care and attention, I can distort reality in a way that takes others so far from their own autonomy and individuality that rather than dancing with them, I am dancing with their shells. 

What is clear now is that from a place deeper than I was aware, I wanted my then-girlfriend to know that, deep down, I knew my proper place in our union was one of subservience.

I wanted Kalpna to know that, deep down, deeper than the place I would typically be willing to consciously acknowledge, I was beneath her. By getting down on both of my knees, I was proclaiming my surrender into service of Her, and of the family she would come to create for us.

I wanted her to know my surrender to The Great Mother, embodied in her and as her. 

Let’s not be fooled, most of the time this surrender will look like what we call ‘leadership’. I’ll go first, I’ll raise order from chaos, I’ll speak structures into being, and, when necessary, I will bring forth the loudest voice in our home.

Still though, beneath the surface of this form and function of leadership, there is a following of something deeper, something more divine. 

In fact, I have long since believed that true leadership is not the act, but the opening.

My wife is a courageous opening that brings forth the movement of my being. 

All of my superficial and obvious power is in service of a deeper, more invisible, and more important power. Every supposed first step that I take is a response to a deeper, truer and yet invisible first step – her inviting desire. 

True masculine leadership is a following of the divine feminine. 

Championing my wife as she birthed our first son was, for me, a holy experience. Everyone in the room, both men and women, were taken by her in spirit, they bowed to her, and they were at her mercy.  

As we moved from the birthing room, our memory faded, and we were distracted by the stimulants of the neon and blinking world. But when we slow down, we can still hear her screaming in agony, groaning in ecstasy and slowing down time while the world moved from spinning beneath her and to spinning around her. 

When we slow down enough, we know that She is the center. And it is easy for us to praise Her. It is right and good for us to lay down at Her feet.

As a possibility, the greatest thing a man can be in this world is a surrendered champion for women, whether she relates to him as her father, brother, husband, friend or coach.

I know there is power in this choice. I know that by committing myself to being a champion for women from a chosen position of subservience, that I am lowering myself in a way that most men wouldn’t have the courage to. And I am aware of the space and possibility this creates. 

If you are a woman and you are my client, then it is from this place that I am your Champion

Not as your counterpart, not as your equal, but as someone who recognizes his power is forever less than your capacity to create, and who doesn’t rage against this but who honors it with gratitude and respect. 

I am at your service.

Loving us all, JPM