This blog was launched on Mothers’ Day 2009. It was inspired by, and is dedicated to, a remarkable woman – my mother, Miriam. She had died just a few weeks earlier, on the 4th of April, at the marvelous old age of 96. I was blessed to care for her in her last years; what a teacher she was for me!
She often remarked about the seeming scarcity of awakened women in our 21st century context – and we wondered if it was, perhaps, a case of women being more reserved and inward about their wisdom than men. The world’s bookshops and the internet both abound with material written by men on the topic of awakening, but reports by women are harder to find. When I checked out the links page on a noted Australian nonduality teacher’s website, for example, I found over twenty links to males’ sites and just three to women’s sites.
I decided to address this imbalance in my own small way by creating a link list to the awakened women who I happen to know about. I am not in any way claiming their superiority over their male counterparts; I am neither feminist nor sexist. My own journey has been along a ‘pathless path’ well paved by male teachers: J Krishnamurti, Nisargadatta Maharaj, Ramana Maharshi, and Wei Wu Wei. They are honored and loved, and will no doubt turn up in postings here.
These four teachers are well known for their independence from doctrinal constraints. The first three were born into the Hindu system but transcended it, and all systems. Wei Wu Wei was a loose cannon rolling around the fields of C’han, Taoism, Zen, Tibetan and Mahayana Buddhism without adhering to any doctrine. My own tendency has been towards a similar flight-path. I have been drawn to teachers and teachings that don’t muck around with hierarchies and practices but directly confront the question of identification with an assumed and separate self.
The women on my list include those who, for the most part, steer clear of any organized, traditional approaches, pointing directly to the truth of Being, now. Right now. In this, just this. Here, always here.
The list is not presented in any particular order.
Names of women no longer with us in body but whose presence has been requested in this list have been added at the bottom.
[Please note that this page has been edited and updated as of March 2017. Some teachers / writers have dropped out of sight and their names have been removed. Links to women who express the inexpressible with great beauty – whether in words or music or performance – but aren’t moved to be “teachers” have been moved to the blogamigos page. This page will now feature women who are formally or informally “pointing directly to the truth of Being, now” – in their writing, talks, meetings, and publishing. I’m always grateful for suggestions; please make contact.]
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Painting by Georgia O’Keeffe, White Lotus