Journey Woman Sarah Nicholson answers Ten Questions.
Mim meet Sarah
Sarah meet Mim.
That’s how I ‘met’ Sarah Nicholson – a mutual friend introduced us on email. And though we have as yet to meet in person, I knew quite quickly after reading Sarah’s website and communicating via email, that Dr Sarah Nicholson was someone I would like to meet and know more about.
Dr. Sarah Nicholson explores human potential and flourishing from a female perspective. Her research was initially inspired by the work of Joseph Campbell on the hero’s journey. Like Campbell’s heroes she is driven by a sense of wonder and awe about the experience and purpose of living. She is the author of The Evolutionary Journey of Woman: From the Goddess to Integral Feminism, has studied and practiced extensively in the traditions of Vipassana, Insight and Zen meditation, and has published and presented research in Australia and internationally. She presently teaches in the fields of religion and gender studies, literature and academic writing practice in Sydney, Australia.
WonderWomen is very pleased to have Sarah answer this month’s Ten Questions.
What is the essence of being a woman?
I’m not sure that there is one essence to womanhood. While perhaps in the touch points of our common experience – in our biology, the way we are enculturated – there are things we might call essences of being woman, these are not eternal, nor essential to all women. For all that we share in experience and similarity, we are also often profoundly different.
What do you feel unites women?
Our common experiences and from this our understanding of each other.
How do you stay strong, assertive and feminine?
This is an ongoing practice for me. I have found my therapeutic relationship with my female psychoanalyst to be the most profound help in finding the spot in me that is genuinely strong and assertive in a feminine way.
What and who inspires you?
I have been inspired by many of my teachers: Shambhala teacher Pema Chodron for her straightforward communication of compassion and wisdom; yogini Sofia Diaz for her fierce grace and passion; deep rest teacher Jaya Ashmore for her softness, strength and mystical depth and feminine power teacher Katherine Woodward Thomas for her warm, trustable presence
How do you live your life so it has meaning?
I have tried to use my passion as a compass for life. At times that’s been easy, at other times very difficult. I try to return to my meditation practice whenever in doubt.
What contribution would you like to make to benefit humankind?
I would like to offer back to others all that I have learnt.
How do you stay calm under pressure?
I don’t always, it’s hard, but I do find that meditation and breathing helps.
How do you move from dream into action into completion?
By focusing and I find working with others helps me not to drift off into other plans.
Three words to describe how you maintain a life balance.
Presence. Mindfulness. Play.
If you could ask any woman one question, what would you ask?
While I don’t have one question for one woman, I’ve long wanted to learn from the individuated and enlightened women who came before us. It’s time for us to create a genealogy of women’s wisdom.