Why a 'red tent phase' is so important for every woman

Some of you are probably thinking what the heck is a red tent phase? No I am not literally talking about going & pitching up a red tent. But more the concepts behind the ancient ‘Red Tent’....

In ancient cultures as that of Native Americans, Africans, and Chinese, red is a symbolic colour of strength or female power. The Red Tent is rooted in the ancient Christian history as a gathering place for women. In ancient times, women were admitted to the ‘Red Tent’ when giving birth, or menstruating. Women would come to this sacred place in retreat, and spend this time really connecting to themselves and their sisters. This wasn’t until the rise of the matriarch when it was thought that ‘God’ was not a man anymore but indeed a woman; when the idea around menstruation was not shunned anymore but now seen as powerful. The blood was seen as direct incarnation of ‘God’ and people sought out the presence of a woman menstruating, to be in the presence of ‘God’.

Pretty cool huh! But my how times have changed…

So how do we translate and manifest this into the modern day? My personal translation of the Red Tent into the modern day woman goes like this…

The Red Tent phase for the modern woman is that time in her life when she allows herself to retreat from the world temporarily. She allows herself to really look inside, into her soul. It is that awkward phase of growth, that phase of really getting to know, love & accept who she is; mind, body & spirit. That phase of breaking down the bullshit layers that have built up around her psyche from years of social condition, letting go of the fears that have been instilled that do her no justice & do not resonate with her soul’s calling. The time when a woman connects to her self & realizes her unique gifts; in order to go forth into the world & birth these gifts into physical form; to inspire, to educate, to support, to light up everyone whom crosses her path.
— Nadine Lee

This is the phase every woman seeks, yet very few dare to wonder in fear of what they might discover / who they might become. As Marianne Williamson says it is not our darkness that we fear, but our light ~ who are we to be fabulous, amazing and talented? Well in fact, who are we not to be this!

There is no 'right' or 'wrong' time to go into the red tent phase ~ your soul will let you know when it is time. And it could very well be multiple red tent phases as we blossom through life. The time frame is soul based also, again you will know > for some it is a week, for others it may be months or years!

There is also no right or wrong way to do this. Again listen to the whispers of your heart, where does it need to retreat to allow deep penetration from within.

I myself have been intuitively led on my own little Red Tent phase, my spirit needed to get out of the city for a while and be amongst nature, alone. I manifested a beautiful little cottage in the Byron Bay hinterland, to commit. To commit to myself. I know deep within every part of my body and soul that this time is so damn crucial in my life.  I have learnt things about myself I never knew, I have shocked myself, I have truly began scraping the surface of self love. Something that I knew about on a mind level, but never really understood on a soul level and embodied.

Why do you think Eat Pray Love was such a successful book + movie? Elizabeth Gilbert loved herself so much that she dedicated one whole year in her Red Tent phase + inspired & ignited that 'knowing' in millions of women across the world. Many other successful women I admire, and by success I mean ‘doing what they love & sharing their unique talents’ ~ have done the same. 'Successful' writers, musicians, counselors, lawyers, teachers, actors, business owners ~ all give thanks to their red tent phase.

I hear many women complaining of being single, they feel so alone + believe happiness will come when they find a partner. Little do they realise THIS is their invitation … to go into the red tent. This time of 'alone-ness' is time to go deep inside + get to know themselves + TRULY love themselves. This stuff cannot be taught in textbook; it has to be embodied.

The universe works in no coincidental ways, and if it is throwing you a lack of boyfriends/lovers; it is because it knows that this is exactly what you need right now in your life. To be alone. You cannot give yourself fully to a partner, you cannot fully love them, or even receive their love; until you love + know yourself on the deepest most intimate levels. Once we stop resisting the way our life is actually turning out, and go with its natural flow, we are going to keep feeding this misery as everything we resist, will persist.

I understand we live in a complex world and not every woman has this time or the situation to just take off and abandon everything behind her. So… this is what has truly inspired me to birth these Urban Goddess Retreats into the world. A retreat series that allows for this…a commitment for those women who are on the fringe of their red tent; who seek the collective and powerful support of other like minded women. The next Urban Goddess Retreat is Sunday 9th March in Brisbane, click HERE to view the event page + to book in.

These retreats are also a direct extension of The Spirit Sessions eGuide I am launching next week (eeek excited)!

I will leave you with a quote from Women Who Run With The Wolves, by Clarissa Pinkola Estes (one of my favourite books, that I think should become an essential on the school reading curriculum):

In order to converse with the wild feminine, a woman must temporarily leave the world and inhabit a state of aloneness in the oldest sense of the word. Long ago the word alone was treated as two words, all one. To be all one, meant to be wholly one, to be in oneness, either essentially or temporarily. That is precisely the goal of solitude, to be all one. It is the cure for the frazzled state so common to modern women…
— Clarissa Pinkola Estes


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