Love Literature: Queen Afua’s ‘The Sacred Woman’
“It could all be so simple, but you would rather make it hard.” – Lauryn Hill
We sing those Lauryn Hill lyrics allowing the melody to convince us that love is a simplistic emotion, only complicated by uncooperative partners. We want so badly for love to be effortless and undemanding, and we want to revel in euphoria with as little work as possible. If we weren’t a society not wrapped in the excitement of instant gratification, only then could we learn to respect the process of building something godly with another person.
We fill our bookcases and DVD players with stories of hopeless romance. We seek counsel in family, friends, and professionals when love gets too difficult to maintain and we vow to never give our hearts away again after we muster through the results of someone handling it carelessly. We are a love-crazed nation, all seeking the same answers to the question: “What are the secrets to love?”
Love Literature is my genuine attempt to share with readers brilliant and profound pieces of literature about love that I have stumbled across and found to be valuable and worth reading. Years ago, I read a book written by Spiritual Healer Queen Afua titled, Sacred Woman, and I want to share with you our perspective on relationships. You know the rule, apply what you need and bypass what you don’t.
“The Union of Two Becoming One”
Everyone has the autonomy and authority to run their home according to their own beliefs. Historically, the church has always been the cornerstone of the Black community. Given reverence to the Christian faith, many are taught that the man is the head of the home, and the woman serves as his helpmate. The children are to respect the natural order and fall in line.
The structure often collapses, leaving many family units irreparable. Men will argue that women don’t respect the order and refuse to submit. Boisterous women will hold men accountable, arguing that in order for a woman to fall into submission, they must first have someone who gives them something to submit to. Both are accurate.
As a proposed resolution, Queen Afua offers an unconventional ideology about familial order that I found to be intriguing. She suggests that contrary to Biblical teachings, that in sacred relationships, neither the man nor the woman is the head of the house, but instead, it is whomever has the knowledge, judgement, and understanding about the issue that guides that particular aspect of the relationship. The idea is to not suppress your talents or strengths for the sake of your partner’s ego, but to combine intellect and move closer to God. In these unions, both parties submit to one another and praise the strength of their partners, especially those strengths that are absent in yourself.
When we are unwilling to be taught by our significant other, we miss out on valuable life lessons. In a healthy union, both parties have purged their spirits of resentment and frustration, making them less intimidated and defensive when their significant other presents powerful qualities or wisdom in their areas of weakness. With an open and receptive spirit, you will naturally surrender to what is good for your relationship and avoid those things that bring about pain and resentment.
Friends with Benefits
“There’s a whole lot of women who are hooked on a bad man with a good orgasm.” – Q. Afua
What is the emotional cost paid when we subject ourselves to a “friends with benefits” arrangement? An uncommitted relationship, as argued by Queen Afua, can produce unfavorable and emotionally detrimental feelings in both women and men. When a woman gives way for a man to toy with her solely for sexual pleasure, she is placing herself in an emotionally vulnerable and spiritually dangerous situation. More often than not, the result of this uncommitted arrangement is a needy, hopeless, vicious woman. If the hope is to one day exist within a healthy, rich, prosperous relationship, a certain level of commitment must be established. In order for a woman to truly give all the love she possesses, she must feel safe and protected, and more importantly, she has to find peace within her union. This is difficult to create without commitment.
How do you get your partner to commit?
“..be patient and cleanse, and your king will come. He will be compelled to drop rose petals at your feet, anoint and kiss them, for he feels so complete. He knows that to be in the presence of his divine mate, you, is a gift from the Most High, and that he has been waiting for you all his life.” –Q. Afua
Commitment is not something you can force. Before you can request for someone else to commit to you, you must first take an oath to love yourself. In order to attract the most desirable mate, you have to radiate self-love so vibrantly that anyone drawn to you knows without apprehension that loving you properly will require effort and passion. Your partner will recognize that in order to love you, they must pay homage to your richness, your beauty, and your divine power. It starts with you recognizing your worth and being unwilling to negotiate with it. The way you love yourself will drive a man or woman to demonstrate a greater level of aspiration for you and all that you are!
Men seeking a divine mate
Despite common belief, Queen Afua affirms that men are very committal by nature, and seek out their soulmate similar to women. While women are seemingly more complex, men are not. They are looking for four simple things: affection, friendship, communication, and a deep spiritual connection.
Men need to know that they are loved and appreciated. Men, ironically, want to be able to talk to their spouses about anything and everything. They may not always want to talk, but they find peace in knowing that they can. Verbal and nonverbal communication is essential for men. They may not always voice their concerns, but they want their women to be able to sense their needs and thoughts.
“Grandmother’s Basic 4” (p.337)
Before you read and reflect on Grandma’s four basic rules to a successful marriage, be considerate of the times. We are clearly aware that times have changed drastically and modern families are forced to adapt to an economic climate which calls for both partners to be employed to sustain a household. Nonetheless, our grandparents offer some real-life gems. Take heed and recognize where you can infuse some of these techniques into your relationship.
First, meals should be wholesome, healthy and made with your own hands and your own pots. We hear quotes that suggest that the stomach is the pathway to the soul of a man and meals made with love are always more delicious. If we believe that grandma knows a thing or two about sustaining love “until death do us part,” then the effort to prepare home-cooked meals may be a new focal point in your relationship.
Second, “keep looking attractive.” Admittedly, it is sometimes difficult to be overly concerned with your physical appearance when you are juggling the overwhelming demands of life, but the truth is everyone wants something nice to look at. This applies to men and women. Take the time to make yourself physically appealing to your significant other.
Third, keep the home tidy. I am sure I am not the only person who has plopped down on the couch at the end of the week, looked around the house and thought to myself, “this is a mess.” We all function at a higher level when we are in a clean and clear space. The energy flows and thoughts have room to move about. Modern families are sharing this responsibility, but the truth remains; “cleanliness is next to Godliness.”
Lastly, love your man good inside and outside the bedroom. You have to extend some good ole’ southern hospitality to your man. This rule includes refusing to rest if there is bad blood between the two of you. Resolve all issues before going to bed.
Who is this a good read for?
Any man or woman that is seeking to embed spiritual based approaches into their relationship. This book is excellent for anyone looking for ways to cleanse their heart or detox their spirit from past hurt and resentment. This book is also an excellent read for men and women entering into marriage or in a marriage that has been thrown off its designated path by unfortunate life events. This book is not about having hot sex or seducing a man in 40 days or less, it is specifically designed for individuals who are looking to build or maintain a sacred and devoted relationship and are willing to work at improving self in order to create that priceless union.
Pray you all seek and find everything you need and more. Move in love…Until we meet again lovers and friends. Be well. Be prosperous. Be passionate.
Jazz Keyes is a community activist, poetess and a nationally certified Life Purpose and Career Coach. Keyes supplies clients with the necessary tools and techniques to awaken their divine energy, heal their open wounds and create an aura of love, compassionate and tranquility. In 2013, Keyes was named “13 People to Watch For” by Rockford Register Star and in honor of Black History Month 2014, Keyes was recently named a “Neighborhood Hero” by ComEd’s Power of One Campaign. Keyes in currently pursuing her Masters in Clinical Psychology and hopes to one day be a best-selling author and motivational speaker. She has devoted a great deal of her time and energy on mastering the art of communication in order to create healthy, dynamic, long-lasting relationships.