The magic of cycle acceptance—
An amazing thing has happened over the past several years. I have become a woman of certain age. A woman who has been blessed to live long enough and experienced enough to claim my crone mantel. I find that I have ceased to give a good ‘God Bless’ about what other people think of my opinions, or me. I feel freed from the fetters of societal acceptance. I have, through this Blog, my books, classes and my other writings reclaimed my voice.
“When the Grandmothers speak the earth will be healed.”
— Hopi Tribal Prophecy
As defined by modern society’s scorn-filled, condescension for old women, “Crone” became a cringe-worthy word…associated with dreadful images, illness and infirmity. The true meaning of crone can be found in the tradition of the ‘Triple Goddess”, depicting the three stages of a woman’s development…birth — innocent and virginal; maiden — wife and mother, and finally, elder — wise-woman and crone. In agrarian, Goddess cultures, older women, were widely recognized for their wisdom, knowledge and spirituality. The women of these cultures became known as crones or hags, words that originally meant “wise one” and revered elder.
I, and others of like mind, choose to call our selves “crones”, to reclaim a title that we have lost, and to raise consciousness around issues of aging. I view the appellation of crone not as defined by modern dictionaries, but rather as the fulfillment of female life experiences and wisdom. Our youth-orientated society often marginalizes mature women, leaving many women resentful of their younger sisters. Rather than mourn the passing of our youth as our ‘crone years’ beckon, women should revel in our experiences and acknowledge the confidence and wisdom gifted to us by those years. Acknowledging and valuing the wisdom of our elders, learning from their lives is the true intergenerational gift, and the very essence of our human experience. For countless generations, Native Americans have empowered elder women by recognizing them as persons of wisdom and knowledge. As women who have traversed the mid-life passage, we have the ability to mentor those who follow.