The Maia Project is named after my daughter (hi, my name is Mel Taitimu) and the central goal of the project is to support the development of a community of women who can say “I am worthy.” The Maia project will run events and retreats aimed at improving women’s relationship to themselves. We aim to do this in a way that is easily transferrable to your everyday lives. Please sign up if you want to keep up to date with the latest events. Below are a few quotes from some of the events I have already delivered:
On media and being a woman:
The language and images we use to determine our worth as women are defined by powerful societal structures in media, education, politics and religion. If we are not critical of these prescribed ways of seeing the world we are at risk of taking them on. This can cause imbalance as I believe as women, we inherently do not fit the mould. How can we? We are all so vastly different from each other. Our common threads should be determined by us, organically, in our shared stories and shared moments, not by a magazine or social media. The things that connect us and conversely allow us to be unique should be understood through experience NOT through prescription.
On unmasking yourself:
To sit with the discomfort of letting ourselves be truly seen, to face the fear and do it anyway, to say “this is me”, to be honest and real in whatever way that makes sense to you. To allow for the full range of emotions that are part of the human experience as opposed to only the pleasurable ones. To be ok with being you and hoping others are ok with that too but not making our happiness dependant upon that. To raise our faces to the light while acknowledging the presence of the dark and consciously choosing our path, leaning in to and learning from pain if it arises, not running from it. KNOWING that all we feel and do has arisen from with us and no other being or external circumstance has control over that (even if they try to).
On shadow work:
Dark does not destroy the light, it defines it. They co-exist and cannot be teased apart. We are whole because of both. At best we can choose to act from the light and be aware of the darkness. If we refuse to acknowledge it’s existence, the shadow will creep in to our actions without our knowledge. The substance of the shadow is unconscious therefore we transform it by the very act of consciousness, by knowing it.
On talking story:
Talking story is about reclaiming control of spaces where our stories can be told and retold. These narratives then grow into knowledge systems and are maintained intergeneratonally by our daughters and our granddaughters. Womens’ business is demystified, we are no longer alone but part of a greater beating heart that is womanhood. This knowledge is transported from the margins to the centre and becomes a way of knowing and doing that is valued and honoured by all. Men do not fear this but are strengthened by it, through knowing us, they get to know themselves and the potential of our community is raised.