What is the value of the masculine to you? What is the sacred purpose of the masculine in your life?

When a male friend first asked me these questions, I honestly didn’t know how to answer him. When I finally did answer, I felt waves of sadness because my personal experience of the masculine was very different from my response.

For most of my life, I’ve felt more taken from rather than supported by the masculine. I’ve felt more betrayed and violated than protected. The sacred masculine has been more absent than present in my life. When I look at the men in power in the world, I see a masculine image that is more tyrannical than benevolent.

Not having any kind of real relationship with my father, and consequently with my own inner masculine, I’ve only known the masculine outside of my self.

This outer-only awareness of the masculine has led me to feel powerlessness in my relationships with men, as well as a sense of confusion and disconnection regarding the ways of the world.

Praying to God didn’t help, because God was still outside of me.

“You need to call on your divine inner masculine,” a friend suggested. So I did. But my divine masculine was no match for the tyrant masculine who also lived inside of me, who seemed to sabotage me at every turn.

That’s when I realized I’d never know my divine masculine until I faced my inner tyrant. The following story is a metaphor of what has been required of me. I’ve had to have patience, compassion and incredible self worth. I’ve had to have courage, temperance and as Carlos Castaneda calls it, healthy cunning, to meet and make relationship with my inner tyrant and turn him into the divine masculine he truly is.

Because unlike his higher aspect, who loves being in service to the feminine, the tyrant only wishes to use her for his own pleasure and purposes. And as such, he can not be approached or communicated with as I would a male friend, but more as a narcissistic socio path.

I learned the hard way, for example, that tyrants, especially the ones in our own psyches, can’t be intimidated, fought against or destroyed. They can’t be approached as subordinates or even equals. They are always top dog. They can’t be loved into goodness, at least not in the way most of us know how to give love. They can’t be talked into doing things they don’t want to do. Their price for doing anything is always a thousand times more than we can afford.

It is here I will begin the story of a woman and a daughter who lived in captivity, in a harem to be specific. Planning her escape, the mother knew she needed to first ensure her daughter’s safe leave. Which would necessitate persuading the sultan to grant the girl’s sabbatical, which hardly ever happened. But before this, the woman had to win the sultan’s favor to even get an appointment with him. Being one of the elders in a harem of beautiful women, this would be a miracle in itself.

Luck shined upon her, as one day the sultan was in the mood for the tenderness of a more experienced consort and he requested the older woman. Touched to have been chosen, for a moment her heart softened. “It isn’t so bad to be the wife of a sultan,” she thought. “He provides for me and my daughter. We live in a palace.” Appreciating her husband, she bathed and ornamented herself, preparing for her visit with him.

When the guards came to escort her to the sultan’s private chambers, the woman gathered her beloved cobra, which coiled around her arm like a bracelet. She did not say a word as she listened to the guard’s conversation.

“The whore screamed so loud my ears are still ringing! The body’s still down there.”

The woman instantly knew who the guards were talking about. She and her dear friend had been dreaming of escape for a long time. She hadn’t seen her in days. Apparently, her friend had left without her and had gotten caught and killed in one of the underground tunnels.

The woman’s face grew hot with rage. She was angry at her friend for her impatience and betrayal. Now it would be that much harder to escape! She was angry at the guards for talking so callously about someone she loved. And she was especially angry at the sultan for her friend’s murder.

Knowing she would lose her appointment with him if she screamed or even cried, the woman breathed deeply into her rage, as a single tear streamed silently down her cheek. She breathed and with every inhale and exhale, she regained her clarity and her quest for freedom.

The woman entered the sultan’s bedroom with all of this emotional chaos in her heart. Seeing him, her first thought was to command the cobra to bite the sultan in the neck, injecting him with deadly poison. But she kept breathing and returning to her deeper desire for her daughter’s and her own escape, instead stroking the snake, soothing it.

She breathed into the fire of her rage, cooling it, turning her desire for freedom into her desire for the sultan, who was very pleased. So much so, he suggested that her daughter go on sabbatical. He granted this without her even asking.

The next day her daughter left to spend the weekend with her aunts, who took her in despite the judgments of others for housing an unclean harlot. That night when all the palace was asleep, the woman and cobra made their escape through the underground tunnels, staying in the shadows, where she only stopped once to weep silently for her friend, whose body was being eaten by rats.

When both the daughter and mother had finally arrived safe, the aunts were overjoyed. But they knew it wouldn’t be long before the sultan’s men showed up, looking for the runaway harlot, and killed them all. The women shared a meal together before packing for the long journey ahead. The aunts would have to leave with them because they were no longer safe in their home. Under the dark moon, six women walked into the night. Not knowing where they were going, if they would make it or even if they would be alive tomorrow. But in this moment, they were together and they were free.

The story stretches me in uncomfortable ways. My first reaction is, “So fucking what!” The woman used the oldest trick in the book. She seduced a man sexually to get a favor.

And yet she had to be a masterful seductress. It wouldn’t have been enough for her simply to put on a superficial, sexy act. The cobra would have been agitated by her false behavior and the sultan, who had his pick of beautiful consorts, would’ve detected her lack of passion for him and instantly dismissed her. The woman had to be a master of her emotions. She couldn’t just stuff them and simply tolerate her experience. She had to transmute them on the spot into something that would serve the sultan’s desire and ultimately her own.

Not that I’m advocating women compromise ourselves sexually to get what we want. Hardly. I’m more pointing towards the inquiry of how we can practice the art of transmutation in our everyday lives.

If each of the characters in the story represents a character in our own psyches in our quest to fulfill our heart’s desires, how can we allow each one to serve us, including our inner tyrant and his minions?

I’m suggesting that the outer tyrants in our lives and in the world are reflections of our inner ones. And until we can meet them on their turf, which is in the subconscious and outside of our control, we will continue to live unconsciously enslaved to them.

I’m suggesting that our soul’s libration may sometimes require us to have things like what Carlos Castaneda calls, healthy cunning. And that obligations and obstacles which seem to weigh us down all have their purpose.

In the story, for example, the woman’s need for her daughter’s safety helps her to have patience, temperance and wisdom in her quest for freedom. The murder of her friend and the thoughtlessness of the guards serve to stir her emotions and shake her awake from her comfortable forgetfulness. The venomous snake on her arm symbolizes her power to choose. Her dead friend warns of the danger on any worthy path.  Even being her greatest enemy, the sultan, provides the woman with the opportunity to turn her rage into clarity and passion, and ultimately the power to fulfill her heart’s destiny.

Which is why I have an alter for my tyrants. Whenever I put an offering on it, it is an act of forgiveness. It is like entering into the sultan’s den after just hearing my best friend has been murdered. I feel my rage and my burning intention. I feel my powerlessness and my power. I feel the mirrors of the betrayer and the violator shattering, and in their place the divine inner masculine revealing Him Self. And more and more in my life now, He is showing up.

Session 5 of the Women’s Sexual Mystery School is about creating a new relationship with the masculine, inside and out. We will circle in a beautiful mountain top temple in Santa Barbara, California Saturday August 1. Sign up at and spread the word to girlfriends. If you can’t join us this round, get on my email list and receive my ebook, How to Make Men Flock to You-Secret Attraction Practices Every Woman Should Know. In the meantime, I’m curious about your thoughts. How do you seduce your inner tyrants?

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