I have to get something off my chest.
For over two months now, there has been a moral tug-of-war going on in my heart. It is the tug-of-war between sensible commerce and moral duty. It is a tug of war that kept my political views off of our facebook page for the business. Mostly.
But I am done with that. I am, today, officially done with that.
It happened with the Women’s March on Washington and the solidarity march we attended here in the central valley. It happened because so many people posted angry comments under our photos. We were harshly judged for standing in solidarity with the women.
We are Beguine revivalists. If you don’t know who the Beguines were, maybe you should look them up. They were progressive activists for women, in the middle ages. Their core mission was to lift women from poverty by giving them housing security, food security, and training, and jobs. This is who we are. This is what we want to be.
Our capitalist enterprises are there to support our spirituality and activism. It is not the other way around. Our capitalist enterprises are for the women, for the people. Our progressive activism is for the women, for the people. Our spirituality? That’s for us.
Here’s what you need to understand about our origins. This order was given birth by the Occupy movement. Our origins are in protesting. While out with the people, the formalization of this order came as a result of so many people asking for it – from so many asking for an order that has, as its holy trinity -- service, activism, and spirituality.
We grew a business from nothing, two years ago, to employing nine folks full-time and another nine to twelve in various specialty positions, and this all began from five thousand anarchist, activist, facebook friends.
Let’s just take a quick stroll through what we are all about.
The Sisters of the Valley is a newly born, new-age group of Sisters whose fundamental mission is to get plant-based medicine into the hands of those in need -- and to do that in a responsible and sustainable manner. The mission is supported by their founding principles, which are to honor Mother Earth and her intelligent plant, provide a valuable product to the people, empower other women to succeed, and participate in peaceful progressive activism.
#1 Chastity. Do you think that when we take a vow to privatize our sexuality and keep ourselves covered at all times in public, do you think we can support a pussy-grabbing president? How does that work?
#2 Activism. Yes, activism is a vow. So now, tell me, if activism is a vow we take, do you not expect us to join protests?
#3 Service. This is our medicine-making. We use non-psychoactive cannabis to make tinctures and topical salves. We have hundreds of testimonials from people around the world thanking us for alleviating their suffering. Trump is trying to appoint a man who has contempt in his heart for this intelligent plant. Do you expect us to get behind that?
#4 Ecology. This is the part of our vow where we respect and repair mother earth, try to reduce our foot-print, migrate to a more plant-based diet, and more friendly co-existence with her. By Trump’s Exxon appointment, do you think he is taking an earth-friendly approach?
#5 Living Simply. Trump represents the opposite of that. He is all glitz and glamour and largess and wastefulness.
Which political party do you think best represents the ethics and values of the Sisters? The Green Party, naturally, and Bernie, who is green at heart. With a few controlling our media propaganda machine, with a two-party grid-locked system, with DNC corruption, neither had a chance.
People like to come onto our facebook posts and tell me ‘get behind your president’. No, sorry, we cannot. He represents the opposite of all we stand for.
One more thing, our business grew fifteen times the second year over the first. We have, since the very beginning -- sold out of every jar, every bottle, of every product we have ever made. We have hundreds of stores around the world who want to carry our products and over seven thousand loyal repeat retail customers.
We do well because of our commitment to excellence, our commitment to making and protecting the medicines in an ancient-ritual spiritual environment. We do well because of our commitment to using best business practices, to being ‘audit ready’ at all times, to ensure all taxes are paid, that no cheats are used, ever. We do well because we are committed to making our customers happy and we are committed to being responsive to their calls, emails, and inquiries from many different social media platforms.
Sometimes I wonder if we were Trump supporters, if we adopted Trump’s business ethics, would our medicine do as well? If we meditated on Trump-think, instead of the suffering of the people, would our products still do what they do for the people? Do any of you seriously feel any compassion radiating from this new President of ours? Do any of you believe we could be in a prayerful, spiritual, meditative environment with a picture of Trump hanging on our wall?
If you think you are punishing us by refusing to buy from us because of our politics – you are not. I have maintained since the beginning that if we only had the progressive activists around the world supporting us, we will always grow and thrive.
Are we angry at the Trump-voters? Heck, no! The decision the American public was faced with was horrible, dismal, disturbing. In the end, we had a choice between two shadow characters and the people chose the one who is 'out' about his darkness; they chose authenticity over pretense. We don’t blame. We don’t shame. We accept that everyone did the best they could, with the deck stacked as it was, against the people.
The American people chose to throw a torch to the system. One half of the people didn’t vote. One fourth of the people voted for Hillary. One fourth voted for Trump. He does not have and never held majority support. I take comfort in that.
So please, stop threatening us, as if we rely on your purchases. We do not. We try to be sensible in regard to our capitalist enterprises, but you are asking us to support a man who mocks our vows. You are asking us to ignore our vows and mission. It is too much to ask. If it offends you, there are many places you can find CBD and it does not offend us if you wish to buy from others.
On another note, I have had a half dozen women declare that they will not buy from us because they perceive us to be ‘pro-abortion’. We try to explain -- it isn’t abortion we are proponents of, it’s just that we trust the women to make their own decisions for their own bodies. Have you read our mission statement? Regulating the vagina is the opposite of women empowerment.
We are well aware of the fact that first term abortions didn’t ‘become a sin’ in the Catholic church until one hundred years ago, coincidentally, at the same time the intelligent plant became demonized. It is the same time that mankind stepped up the effort to trash the planet. Do women not see that the divine feminine is under attack all the way around on this planet? From the planet, herself, to the women who occupy it, to the vaginas of the women who occupy it? All are under attack.
We are well aware of the fact that where women have food, housing, healthcare and education security, when they have equal rights and equal opportunity and equal pay in the work force, they have two children. Inside a marriage. Zero abortions. Zero population growth. So we are trying to understand why people want to regulate women’s vaginas? Why wouldn’t you want to fix the root cause of the reason for abortions instead of just attacking the women on a moral basis? Why does one woman want to control the vagina of another woman? Is that thinking sticking to us because of 200,000 years of male energies dominating the planet? Can we not shed ourselves of that and think only in terms of Sisterhood?
Here’s a special little note to the men, who have the propensity to give orders to the Sisters without thinking them through. In the past month, I’ve had two men reach out to us – one to say ‘stick to weed growing and get the hell out of politics, you are making yourselves look stupid’ – and one to say ‘stick to weed growing and stay the hell out of spirituality, you are not a trained theologian.’
My answer to them both? Sorry, we don’t take orders from men, but it’s cute that you tried.
Thank you for letting me get that off my chest. I feel so much better now.