Thursday, March 13, 2008

Sacred Space

While watching Animal Planet the other day, I couldn't help but notice the birth practices of animals. Most hide and make a special place in which to birth. They take great care in creating the safe and serene space where their newborns will come into this world - safe from preditors and safe from the elements.

We humans rarely take the time to make our sacred space in which to birth. If we did, I imagine that birth would take only a fraction of the time that it does. Why? Ina May Gaskin said that the cervix is basically a sphincter. Sphincters are muscles that contract and relax involuntarily and voluntarily in response to certain stimuli. Just as you would not be able to have a bowel movement in front of 4-5 of your relatives or friends, why are women expected to give birth in front of any audience. The sphincter or cervix just will not relax on demand without some effort.

Creating the sacred space for birth is a basic primal instinct. It reaches the very core of our motherhood and the need to protect our little loved one. If we do not create a space for love and acceptance of our babies, does this impact them? Does it impact us as parents? Will it have a lasting impact on us?

Only time may tell us........

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