My yoni – my vagina and I continue to be on an incredible, heart expansive and enriching journey of discovery and reclamation. It is a gift to write this blog here in Cairo, Egypt.

Divine Lotus was officially founded on 8.09.2009 after brewing in my womb cauldron for some time. I knew then that my own healing journey was inextricably linked to saying Yes to breaking the silence about my experience of female genital cutting. 

With the ever present support of the Divine Source of All Life. She whom I know as Divine Mother –I ventured deep into forbidden territory and began to talk about my vagina, first in small circles, then in larger ones. I wrote a book honouring some of her stories. Many discouraged me wondering what on earth I was doing - and at times so did I. 

I was on a quest for myself. My yoni – my vagina was calling me to become aware of her. She was calling me to listen to her. She was asking me to give voice to her. Throughout this incredible quest she revealed the seeds of divinity planted inside her. She raged when she was disrespected and she glowed when she was honoured. She keeps teaching and initiating me.

Like the sperm whale and the elephant I have been gestating a gift of creation linked to my journey and to all the women around the world who teach me and share with me. It took several lunations and inward spirals before this authentic Yoni temple cushion came into being. And as she birthed this is what she had to say: 

“I am your Yoni Temple – sacred chamber of your divine feminine essence.

You come to earth through me. I am your fertile garden. All that is planted inside me has the potential to grow and to multiply.

Once long long ago I was revered and respected. Ancient cultures drew my shape and form onto cave walls from the tip of Africa to the Middle East and all across the meridian of Earth herself. Tales of my power was woven into tribal songs and hip swinging performances.

Every-one knew that I am the portal through which human beings came to be born. This was long before the great forgetting. 

My sacred chamber provides breathless ecstasy. This ecstasy can nurture all aspects of our being. Yet my name is barely mentioned. I am alluded to in jokes and naughty talk. Sprayed in ink on pavements and walls. 

Oh, barely am I spoken of in intonations reserved for one as sacred as me. 

Many systems blame me for causing all sorts of world problems. I was told that I am bad. I could cause disgrace upon families. I began to believe what was told about me. I was unclean, impure. I say to you now that I am born pure. My essence is always pure no matter what. I am the divine in you.

We have been on a long journey to find each other. I am no longer in the shadows. I Thank you. Thank you for hearing my call. I am your sacred source of life giving essences.

Thank you for becoming a priestess of my sacred yoni temple. 

Allow only those who bring honour, respect and love into my yoni temple.”

 

 

The creation of my authentic yoni temple cushion represents the growth, learning and gifts birthed through me and through the work of Divine Lotus.  She is infused with all the lessons learnt, all the prayers spoken – held in the beauty of divine love. 

 

 

I offer a deep bow of respect and love to all the precious sisters that have been a part of her design, experimentation and prodution. And to all the brave and courageous women around the world who continue to say yes to ourselves.

 

 

With respect and love for my vagina – my sacred yoni temple, and in honour of my daughter and my female ancestors. This is for all of us and for the feminine essence present in all of creation.  

 

May we all become priestesses of our sacred yoni temples.

 

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What started out as a woman feeling called by her womb and yoni has grown into my soul work and vocation. The writing of a short story witnessed by an incredible circle of women and men followed. It was here that the conversations about fgm were initiated before I became the Founder of Divine Lotus.  I learnt to witness and hold space for the secret stories of sexual and intimate traumas experienced by many people in South Africa. 

When I founded Divine Lotus many friends and family thought that I was crazy. The layering of taboos related to this subject was too daunting even to think about. I did not think about the how when I started. I trusted in Divine Guidance and knew without a doubt that this is my soul work.

The root of my name at birth means womb in Arabic. Unbeknown to my parents, my soul’s calling was coded in me when I came to earth. Womb and Merciful are twin arabic words used at the beginning of every prayer. My initiation started early and have driven me to seek the mysteries of the feminine all my life.

It has been a monumental soul task to offer my own stories of wounding here in the mother city. My female lineages did not have the option to pioneer in apartheid south africa. They inherited a traumatised legacy that defined the roles and positions they could take in their society. I stand on the shoulders of these courageous women. Their strength and tenacity breathes in my backbone. Their lives gave rise to my life. 

By the Grace of the Mother and with the support of my ancestors - my soul work is rooted here in the mother city. A body of work honouring the feminine as divine and our sacred yoni's and wombs as holy compassionate vessels are blossoming.  

Life offers all the lessons I need to be able to master my dance with life and love.  It is here present in my life where my own grief and tears are shed and where my own growth is seeded.  These often painful lessons fill the container of divine love that I hold for all my offerings. Without my own experiences of struggle and trauma, I would not be able to offer others the gifts of insight and wisdom to support their journeys of empowerment.

Every intimate conversation feels ground breaking and historical.  The word Vagina and Yoni is no longer down there, or whispered in secret. She has risen and continues to Rise. Women and Men in South Africa, Turkey and Egypt share spaces where the shame is washed away and shaken off. Joining an evolutionary movement to get to know what it truly feels like to be in our bodies, to live our lives and to save ourselves. I Bow to these women and men who are on their journeys of reclaiming and who continue to be my teachers.

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I started writing this blog 20km from the pyramids of Giza in Cairo. Egypt is a land of paradox, difficult to describe simply. 9.5 million people live in Cairo.  Sometimes the heat and the smell of decay is almost unbearable - While pyramids frame the landscape. And you meet people who carry a soulful beauty about them. Yes, there is magic in this land.

We gathered, as Sisters of many paths, rose petals kissing our feet amidst the fear and stories of the economy, the politics, the decay and death. We heard Love calling us together. Saying; "I will be waiting here. For your silence to break. For your soul to shake. For your love to wake. " Rumi

Oh beautiful Sisters of Egypt. You gathered to shape the forbidden words, yoni, vagina, womb, Rahim – holy vessels of compassionate merciful life. You,sacred portal of rebirth. I feel you. I hear you. I have come to you in love.

With sculpting hands, you brought the hidden to light. Gave Thanks to the wombs through whom we came to earth.

At Dahshur, a holy date palm forest invited us to pray, swim and dance under its canopy. The palm is mentioned in the Quran and in the bible. The palm has been a sacred symbol of peace, abundance, rest, hospitality, endurance and long life for many cultures and for centuries. The prophet Muhammad pbuh – is said to have built his house from a palm tree, Ancient Assyrians believed that the palm represented heaven and earth. Inanna, Apollo and many more are linked to the sacred palm.

Basking in and under the shade of a mighty palm tree forest, brought many gifts into our time at Dahshur. As the gentle wind nudged the palms into a swaying dance, our sacred time together had us swaying our holy hips to a pulse held in the land. Where words fell away and we all became one breath, one womb. We shook off the things we no longer wished to hold onto.

Rooted to earth, our rosettes bloomed, kissing the sky with our sacred shapes.

Yes, we reclaimed our holy vessels of compassionate merciful love as the call to prayer echoed through the land. We vowed to anchor love within ourselves and into the world.

To Serve only Love is a potent medicine for ourselves, our ancestors and all of life, at this time in our history on earth. It feels like the most revolutionary action I can take now. The most revolutionary act we choose to shape together.

I Thank and Honour each of you who shared your life, your laughter, your gifts , your home and your love so graciously. May the heart of the sun continue to shine through you.

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Thank you Karakya Retreat. Your beautiful valley’s and curves held us all with such grace. Your sunshine warmed us while we sculpted and shared on the soft earth. Beautiful Bodrum, we rested and feasted and were nourished while our energies were restored. Thank you to the kitchen goddesses and knights who fed us so beautifully.

Magical Lake Bafa - your body of water filled our cups to the brim - your birdsong rang out clear even as the sacred waters fell from the sky to make love to mother earth. We dream of you and wonder what seeds will be born? Which flowers will come into full bloom? 
I am enriched - ripe with all that has been birthed along your shores.
 
From Bodrum, to Lake Bafa, to Izmir and all the way to Ankara - women gathered to clear the energies ... and to send love in their wombs. 
We shared deep grief and almost unspeakable horrors that we have experienced. We held the sacred throughout our days and we danced our prayers.
 
Filiz Telek and I opened the doors of the Sacred Feminine Temple at Lake Bafa together with a circle of soul sisters. For 7 000 years a peace loving Goddess culture existed in harmony with nature in Anatolia. All around Turkey the ruins of ancient temples stand as testimony to this time and to the stories of the sacred feminine and all her practices. All the forms of her devotion - her dancing, her songs, her art, her music and her divinity. In ceremony we remembered Her story. We reclaimed the priestess living within each of us - even as the word priestess does not exist in turkish. 
 
We called so much into remembrance - the gifts of our mothers and grandmothers. Their sewing and crafting gatherings. We called on our ancient feminine memories to rise within us as we reclaim the rights over our bodies, our sexuality, our own stories and our rights to pleasure and to receive.
 
We honoured our paternal lineages and We Thank the sacred masculine for showing up in so many different ways. 
 
I met many women who practice the ancient feminine sacred arts. My Sister Oykum took me for my first hammam experience. Wow, the womb shape greeted me from all angles in the main room as coloured glass brought sparkles of light to beautify every one inside. The wise women who practice at the hammam carries ancient knowledge. Their presence and their touch was magical. I felt like I was in the body of the Great Mother being massaged and restored back to health and well being. The hammam is deeply connected to our bodies and to our sacred sexuality. Many women came to the hammam in preparation for marriage and nights of passion, cleaning the body of dead skin, sweating out toxins and awakening the powers of beauty and rejuvenation. After a few hours in the hammam amongst other women sharing and laughing, my skin glowing, I felt ready for life again.
 
I met women who work in the spirit world - called upon in times of struggle by modern women, doing their work simply, holding the wisdom of the past.
 
All around Turkey sacred feminine spaces are alive and growing.  We gather to invite Divine Love into our hearts, wombs and lives. We dance and share our joys - we allow ourselves to be witnesses and we witness each other. 
 
The Sisters of Anatolia - Baciyan-i Rum came into our circle. Stories of beautiful women with hearts of lionesses - trained in combat, who lived and thrived in Anatolia - brought much joy and wonder to our retreat as their memory came to life.
 
My cup is full, my heart enriched with this reclaiming and remembering.
 
In a country with so much turmoil, the women of Turkey continue to gather and connect to their medicine, their songs, their dances, calling in the sacred masculine - weaving it all in beauty and with divinity. Mother Cybele, you have blessed us with so much. Tesekkur ederim. Thank you. Shukran. Jazakullah. We are Blessed. 
 
May Our Prayers Bless All the Women and Men of Turkey and All around the World.
 
 
 
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Honoured to add my voice to this campaign
 
I am honoured to add my voice to this campaign. Female Genital Mutilation is no longer in the shadows. Every anti-fgm campaigner should know that our efforts no matter how small has resulted in this subject now being spoken about, written about, discussed in small and large groups world wide. It has resulted in laws about this practice to be changed all around the world. And this continues.I have just been interviewed by Channel Africa. What an incredible opportunity to speak about FGM on a world wide platform. To share my own story and to encourage women to keep talking about their vagina's.This is what happens when each of us does what calls to be done by us from deep within our hearts. 
 
Every women and young girl who cried for her vagina - her sorrow and pain and who asked, Why, Oh Why, do I have to go through this???  
Your voice has been heard.Your pain has been felt and your struggles have not been in vain. 
Every womb on this planet, feel the pain of every other womb. That is the energetic feminine fillaments that connects every women to every women. Every vagina to every vagina. You pain is my pain. What happens to one Womb, Happens to Us All.
 
On this day, we shout a collective, No! out into the Universe.
No More!
No More!
Our bodies belong to us.
Our vagina’s belong to us.
What happens to our bodies should be our choice.
We reclaim this right.
Yes, we reclaim this right.
This gift from God, Allah, Goddess or Spirit.
We know that our ancestors had good reason for the choices that they made.
We mean no disrespect towards them.
We need to choose
We need to choose what is best for us in this era,
In this time on the planet
And we ask for their support,
and their blessing 
as we make new agreements with our bodies and our vaginas.
 
We choose Rites of Passage ceremonies that do not require us to be forced to endure pain, humiliation and years of suffering.
That do not need us to shed our blood.
We choose Rites of Passage ceremonies that honour our bodies, our right to choice.
Our right to experience joy and laughter as we become woman.
We are the women of now
Dreaming a new world into Being.
 
 
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