Harvest moon- A guest post by Beth Campbell

“November twenty-fifth is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls. There are various days dedicated to the historical fight and plight of women, this time around instead of feeling overwhelmed by our collective obstructions I am drawn to reflect on the resilience, strength and alchemy that takes place when we move through the fire, the renewal that takes form within and without is a subject that both fascinates and fuels me.

Despite the ducking stools, the witch hunts of the burning times, the female genocides, the forced lobotomies, the barbaric historic treatment of women by the medical world, the theft and banning
of women-centric healing practices, the rewriting of history, the removal of female scholars from historic remembrance, the piggybacking of our wisdom, creativity, sexuality and power, the rapes,
the torture and the false imprisonment of the ages, women have continued to rebirth themselves throughout; with each new wave of hardship follows the resounding echo of female transformation.

Women are like water, we bend, twist and fall but we never break. Persephone is a Greek goddess, captured by Hades before she reached maturity, her trial is that of forced marriage to her oppressor after he drags her deep into the realms of the underworld where his kingdom reigns. There is no light in the caverns beneath the existing world, for those who don’t exist, life is cloaked by shadows, underneath which, dwells only hopelessness; Yet against all odds Persephone gathered the core of her very essence in order that she may rise up out of bondage into flowering fields where she is worshipped for her role as bringer of harvest, fruitfulness, creation and freedom. Persephone not only conquered the underworld which held her prisoner, she ruled supreme, her transcendence phoenix-like in nature, flames did not burn her, they made her.

It took me a long time to own my inner Persephone, to realise that it is not in duality, simplicity or two-dimensional archetypes that femininity resides. It took a journey into my very own underworld
of being trafficked where I met every kind of hopelessness for me to realise what I was not and therefore distinguish what I am.

I know one thing, that sexuality is a powerful force in the hands of a knowing woman and perhaps this is why society seeks to hold it captive, to cage it, tame it, mutilate it. It isn’t what you think it is. It has nothing to do with the shape and size of our bodies or segmented body parts, it isn’t our appearance, our ability to perform or a spectrum of varying acceptability. It is at the core of our being, our essence, our power, our transcendence.

My hades convinced me that I should use my body as a commodity, I’m sure other women were given a slightly different prison, some less extreme than mine, some more so, what never ceases to die however is the wild drive for freedom that lives within us all.” Beth Campbell

About the Author: Beth Campbell is a writer, domestic violence advocate and trafficking survivor with a passion for women’s empowerment; you can read about and contribute to her latest campaign here:

More to come: Our committee member Pam Sherwood, a passionate advocate of health and wellbeing in the built environment will be following Beth’s campaign closely and updating us through this platform. Please stay tuned.

This is a guest post to commemorate International Day for Elimination of Violence against Women (25th of November) . The theme in 2018 is Orange the World: #HearMeToo . As in previous editions, the day is the beginning of a 16 day period of activities concluding on the 10th of December 2018, International Human Rights Day. Get involved and follow the hashtags on Social media #OrangeUrWorld, #OrangeTheWorld, #HearMeToo, #EndVAW

If you have been moved by the story or feel personally affected by it,  remember, you don’t have to feel alone. Consider contacting one of the following resources:

United Nations:

Reporting Advice MET