When truth is replaced by silence,the silence is a lie

Each of us exists in a complex of many kinds of silence…

Rebecca Solnit

The book “The Mother Of All Questions” is a collections of essays, mainly focused on the discussions of human rights, feminism, gender, happiness, writing, violence, men and a power.

‘There’s no good answer to how to be a woman,’ – says the author. You just IS. But in the eyes of our society and most of the men there’s only one proper way for a woman to live: reproductive.
That is usually the first question men ask you if you are a woman. No, that’s not anyone’s business, but if you don’t have kids there’s always next question: why? You may also treated as a criminal if you can’t properly answer to “why”.

‘What is the point to live at all? You are a woman.’

Our culture is obsessed with a question: ARE YOU HAPPY? Happiness described for us as a line of:

a) having a spouse
b) offspring
c) private property
d) erotic experiences
c) successful job

But the world is full of people who have it all, but still feeling miserable. Because THERE’s NO ONE-SIZE-FITS-ALL formulas. For one – that formula can become a prison, for another – liberation. We are given often a single story line, or one plot…which everybody have to follow. Why our society do not allow us to “find another way of telling the story”? The recipes for fulfilment seems to cause a great deal of unhappiness in us, humans. But we continue, quietly, in silence. 

“…there’re so many silences to be broken” Audre Lorde

We are forgetting that sometimes silence equals death. It is the ocean of unsaid, repressed and unheard voices. The voice create a story. And each story has a place in a society.
Think “slavery”, think “genocide”, think “povetry”, think “violence and rape”, think  “discrimination”. Thats is a great silencing, the universal condition of oppression.

The book is telling the stories of rapes, sexual assaults, abusing kids, killed freedoms and voices. How and why the “rape culture” became epidemic in XXI? (by the way only 2% reports are false, that means 98% of them are true). What makes us abuse, rape and kill each other? Is it hate? Sometimes it feels like our society, every aspect of it, is riddled with violence,  or build on hate.

Silences build atop silences, a city of silence that wars against stories. The citizen of the city silencing themselves to be accepted by the silenced. People offering their silence to each other and at the end all we have is people who hear no one, not even themselves.

A great article in the book -> about Isla Vista massacre 23 May 2014. To tell you honestly, made me cry. We say a murderer took another’s life. To TAKE is to take a possession of. It is to steal, to assume a privilege of an owner, to dispose of someones else’s life itself as though it were yours to do so. It never is.
91% americans killed by guns every day, 12 000 gun homicides a year in the US. This is the literal WAR, happening just outside of your windows.

I know the position “it’s not the gun that wounds or kills, it’s the person holding it”, or “the guns will make us safer” or “look, I am a good guy with a gun – I’m going to stop a bad one”… My questions are: do we need more gunmen – heroes? Have you ever seen one hero on the street? No. But still homicides, suicides, and horrible accidents when small kids find the guns and shoot friends, parents – happen incessantly!

The most horrible thing about the gun: it is being an alpha, being in control, the same old impossible macho dream of being, the icon of identity.

We all understand – there’s no easy solution in this question. But I’m telling you, I’d be fkn scared to know that my neighbour (engineer) is keeping a gun under his pillow…

Let’s get back to the women.
The book is filled with a real stories about women. Btw, Rebecca Solnit is mentioning also: “To be Black and a woman is a double duty’, which is sad but true.

“When a woman says something that impugns a man, particularly one that at the heart of status Quo, especially if it has to do with sex, the response will question not just the fact of her assertion, but her capacity/and right to speak about it.”

During many generations we’ve been told that women are delusional, confused, malicious, conspiratorial, congenitally dishonest, often all at once. Yes, we are imagining things! We are the liars! We should be quiet and listen to alpha.

You are going to tell me now, that #NOTALLMEN are like that.
Of course not all men, but still all women are at a gunpoint.
Of course not all men commit these crimes, but the point is that all women are impacted by them. Blame-the-victim is working pretty well and applied in each situation if the victim is a woman.

Globally 38% of all women murdered are killed by their intimate partners (World Health Organisation Study).

Let me tell the story how I’m facing #notall- problem regularly. Some of the men who’s visiting my page – to check daily on Victoria (because they think: “hey, how she’ll survive without our daily care, right?”) are belong to those type of #notallmen. They are probably a good fathers and caring husbands or maybe a really good friends, but not when they come to my page. Here they are:

1 Unhappy, 1 Too worried, 1 Judge and 1 Sheriff.

They are unhappy about my “book” – I didn’t write it yet (how could you??!!), they are too worried about the quality of my content (what? posting daily??..wow, thats so unusual!!), they are judging you for the level of your humour (gosh, it’s too loooow, we are talking about high matters and here you are with your bullshit) and, of course, those who want to find out what is happening with my sex life and why am I writing the way I am writing.

“Its a fiction, bro!” –
“No way, but you’ve tried that all before, right?
Tell me more, describe the positions..”

And when they are done here, those #notallmen…- they go back to their “great amazing happy” lives. 

I have to mention that no woman ever done that to me on wordpress. I guess we, women, should not only take care about the World, Men, Food, Houses, Work, but also be happy online to make a fkn good balance in this internet-world.

Rebecca Solnit is an American writer. She has written on a variety of subjects, including the environment, politics, place and art. Solnit is a contributing editor at Harper’s Magazine, where bi-monthly she writes the magazine’s “Easy Chair” essay.


Victoria Ray NB View All →

Living in Sweden. Awesome. Happy. Writing. Ayurvedic food. Healthy lifestyle. Dogs. Literature. Drawing. Meditation/Yoga.

68 Comments Leave a comment

  1. 💙🕊I haven’t read the book so I cannot properly reply to the gun violence. I am not against guns. I think it be foolish to trust peace can work. The recent conviction of Larry Nassar, US Gymnastics doctor, is good news the cycle of sexual abuse is being dealt with. Broken. Shattered. I hope! The problem is the pointing fingers are as deadly as guns. You should have known! Yes… there are probably instances parents should have. They put too much trust in a man who we should trust. I could say so much to this post! But we should take all we read and think and temper it with reason, logic, history, guidance, heart. Yes, most of all a courageous heart willing to listen… and only then speak. Silence is important if we are thinking louder than our voices and then speaking in a way people, listen. 🌻🎨💚💜💛🧡❤️💙

    • I understand your position but I grew up without the guns in the environment without the guns as well…I don’t know. It feels good. It feels right to grow up like this…anyway there’s no clear solution to that question now bcz the world is more fkd up. We r moving in the opposite direction most of the time. It looks like 100 steps left & 1 – right.
      The sad thing about humanity – a peace will never work …

      • We didn’t have guns in our house growing up, even though my dad grew up with them. Generations of my family were farmers and kept guns for good reason. My brother was an avid hunter but mostly by bow and arrow. He had a deep respect for nature and wanted to be a forest ranger. A dream job. He should have. It would have changed his life!

        The gun violence is happening where? Certainly larger cities and gangs. Black on black violence in Chicago is awful… and their elected officials and politicians do nothing. But they still have the vote of these people. Insanity breeds insanity. It is impossible to understand because the problem is convoluted. Then there are people with guns who do not respect the gun. Leave them lie around as if they are toys! Ugh 🤦🏼‍♀️ i am going to say it… some people!!! Common sense? None. To make matters worse, the gun is loaded. What is going to happen? Nothing good.

        Two examples of gun violence, that can be prevented from the gun getting a bad reputation. Respect the gun. Respect people. In an ideal world, with no psychological problems, guns would become obsolete.

        Heavy topic.

      • sorry was outside couldn’t see the whole comment, something with wp app. Yes, you are right – Insanity breeds insanity…
        And respect is lost. We are taught to see the worst, to be prepared for the worst only. Everybody is enemy and the guns are loaded. Its probably impossible to find the end of the truth..but I hope each of us will do the right decision at least in our own families – where everything starts, where children grow up to the full members of this crazy society

      • We are taught to see the worst, to be prepared for the worst only. 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻

        Oh my Ray! Yes! We are all fighting now…and before America’s last president, things were heading in the right direction. He had to pick a scab… now we are bleeding. Gushing!! A red river runs through the middle of America. The mighty Mississippi is in flames with the sins of the past. I have long learned forgiveness covers a multitude of wrongs and if we continually ruminate about what dear George did or didn’t do or blame the slave owners who have long passed away, how can we get along? The ones breathing are suffocated by the idiocy of blaming skin color. So, so wrong. Of course, the problem is immense and the solution is far from home. We have given up tradition which itself causes chaos. I am not saying we need tradition to stay afloat, but we do need some order. We need to blend old and new to come up with a new balance. Love that your post causes so much thought… was not prepared for this but happy all the same.

        I am naturally a dreamer. What i saw as wrong, growing up in school, is how much personal responsibility was pushed onto neighbors. We are our brother’s keeper but no one is to blame but ourselves if we fail to do something about ourselves, our families and love each other first. Dont blame schools. Dont blame law enforcement. Dont blame the church or other religions. Do your own education. Dig deep into yourself. What is there? Does anyone know themselves before they point their fingers and guns?

      • Yes, it is a great comment I have to tell you. I dont know if I have something to add.
        The thing is people are always looking for someone to follow, they can’t just by themselves dig into own head/heart/soul, they want to be in the group, they want somebody to tell them that they have chosen the right way/path… thats why nobody knows themselves. not really… they are too busy with the following someone else dream or desires.
        hopefully the situation in your country will change for the better.

      • I don’t think I would’ve ever checked it out without reading your review. The next time I come across it, I’ll have to check it out. I love that goodreads allows us to add books for future reading. A great way to stay organized. 🙂

      • Yes I love goodreads as well, perfect keeper of my future reads haha
        I would never buy it but the words about silence and women (when I opened that book at the store) touched my heart..

      • I have a soft spot as well for women’s struggles. I recently finished a short novel that shared the stories of six women who fought and triumphed. About half way through the book, tears were rolling down my cheeks. I’ve had the book for months, but never had a chance to read it until recently. I’m happy that I did. I’m hoping to start a new book this week by an author that I follow on twitter, and now goodreads.

      • Her name is Stephanie Collins. The title of her novel is “With Angel’s Wings”. I would agree that the subject of abuse and violence are very sensitive and heartbreaking – even though I’ve also treated both subjects in my poems.

  2. Interesting take. As a man I will be the first to say we have brought a lot of this on ourselves. To lump all men into an uncaring group is disheartening. There are a lot of good men out there just like there are a lot of bad women. Maybe I read it wrong but I understood it as if one is bad they are all bad. That way of thinking seems to becoming a popular position of society at the moment. I personally look at each individual and their actions. As far as the comments on guns I think I am going to choose not to give an opinion. The only comment I will make is that mine kept me from being hospitalized or “coffinized” one early morning. Thanks for sharing.

    • U know best about the guns for sure…if u r living in the place where u have to fight for ur life – they r needed I guess.
      About bad women or bad men: my husband for example is a great man (in my life), I hope he’s a great man everywhere he goes but you never know. I’m glad you know yourself that ‘well’ and is a “good person” 🙂

      • It is unfortunate that our news media is so biased and doesn’t tell the whole story. You read my blog on child sex abuse. Our government wants to blame the crisis on guns when it is hate in the heart that is the real trigger. So many of these children end up in the system and are in and out of jail and foster homes and really never know love and really never learn the value of life. Then one day they……..

      • Yes I met the kids from foster homes I know what u r talking about. I honestly don’t know how to fix the situation. I met parents who kept their kids without food for days..bcz they were too drunk or high…how to fix them? Do they ever will be able to give love to that child? I doubt…

      • The sad thing is that a place to for these children to go is hard to find. A lot of times these children end up right back with the abusive parent. It is a sad situation. One more point about guns is that like where I live (rural farm country) it takes a good 25 minutes for a deputy sheriff to arrive when called. Not enough officers and too much ground to cover. I could meet them at the door and tell them they are trespassing and if they were all hopped up on meth that would probably be my last statement in this life.

      • Yes, its a bit different out there. The Life.
        And often it is so: kids still end up the with the abusive parents. And there they learn the wrong kind of the behavior (it isn’t their fault ofcoz), but we have what we created, when they r grown up

      • “we have what we created”, once again you show your wisdom. You impress me. You get it. You understand. Oh how I wish so many more did. You made my day.

  3. Let me try again. For some reason first said anonymous.
    Interesting take. As a man I will be the first to say we have brought a lot of this on ourselves. To lump all men into an uncaring group is disheartening. There are a lot of good men out there just like there are a lot of bad women. Maybe I read it wrong but I understood it as if one is bad they are all bad. That way of thinking seems to becoming a popular position of society at the moment. I personally look at each individual and their actions. As far as the comments on guns I think I am going to choose not to give an opinion. The only comment I will make is that mine kept me from being hospitalized or “coffinized” one early morning. Thanks for sharing.

    • Not #allbad by the way, but not all good either. Those good can show pretty evilish teeth time to time as well. So u r asking yourself: hm, how is it even possible?
      Doesn’t matter the gender of coz.
      But I am PERSONALLY always been bullied or mocked by the men!

      • I guess I am more naive than I realize. Bullying or mocking a woman just is not in my thought process. However I won’t back down from a woman that attacks me or my character for no reason. I got custody of my son when he was 5 (which was unheard of then because we weren’t supposed to be fit to raise them) and I gained a whole new respect for women.

      • Oh I don’t know, I’m lucky I’m meeting mostly good ppl on my path.
        And yes it’s difficult to raise a child alone – no matter who’s a parent: father or mother.

  4. I am sort of anti feminist, I believe both species of God are meant for something, so doing anything in extreme order is only going to play with nature.

    My personal say in this matter of gun control, domestic violence and rape is when religion goes out of the person, then it doesn’t matter to one, what he does and doesn’t. Why in my view, religion is so important! No Govt in the world can put check and balances 100% rest assure 30% of the whole population. Only one thing remains, the love for one religion irrespective of the following. Since all religion promotes peace, so if one loves his/her religion, atleast he / she knows that he has to follow something so the person will not indulge into evil.

    The other main aspect is the lack of education and the abundance of nudity and sexual promotion. If anyone in personal capacity, started attracted to such thing, there is no stopping by. Than the person start looking this in other sex such things, and it kept going and going. It’s a serious mental disorder, and the surprising part is there is no cure to mental sexual frustration, which the media has opened up for all ages of people.

    • I knew you are lol, I disagree with u in some aspects tho. The religion nowadays is used for violence or for sale.
      If we are talking about the belief – then we shouldn’t say “religion” only. But its a huge theme, I can’t write a short comment about that.
      Agreed about the lack of education and the sexual promotion on media. U r right here…
      I respect your position.

      • I think its the religion which is being taken out, so to create anarchy, that’s why in the name of one or another we see incidents.

        But on ground realities, the religion plays a big part.

        It’s because of these issues, I have stopped watching TV for the past 6+ years 🙂

        And I also love your comments, there should always be a mutual respect, else what’s the difference than between us and extremist for which we are talking about.

      • ppl have learned to use the religion and God the way they want. Those who really believe do not scream it on each corner and do not cover bad deeds by the name of God. But you are right probably, the belief or a sense of God is lost in them, their hearts.
        TV doesnt show any good nowadays, so again it was a great decision 🙂
        and thank you, appreciate your opinion

  5. Great post! I will check out the book. Thanks for telling us all about it. You have definitely stimulated a lot of interesting thoughts and comments. Powerful!!!!! 🙂

  6. I am sick of “what about the men?”; I am disgusted by the gaslighters, such as the goon who took me to task, after I wrote about Isla Vista, right after it happened; I want to see everyone, ESPECIALLY women, honoured and empowered in their pursuit of life. I love your page and will purchase that book- if for no other reason than that those stories need to be read. I am a white male.

  7. Ha! I find it interesting to hear when a woman asks another woman: “Do you have kids?” and when the other one says: “No”, then the first one say: “Oh, don’t worry, there is still time.” OR “But why notttt?”.
    As far as guns are concerned, actually, there are more heroes than you would think.

    • Interesting version.
      Never happened to me 🙂 maybe you, men, have another vision how the women chat about ‘kids-no kids’.
      It is usually men who asks question “WHY”. I guess because they think they can fix it. Of course… they can fix anything 🙂
      Women are more tactful and when I’m saying “I dont have kids” they simply understand – or just prefer to drop it because they dont know what to say next and maybe it is a sensitive theme for the person…so they just move on to another subject.
      Men usually continue: “why not?”, “is it something wrong with you?” (ahhh, they are all such a lovely ‘doctors’ and “psychologists”). When they understand “nope, there’s nothing wrong” – they tell you “oh, you are still young you’ll get there”…and then the last ONE. Are you ready? They usually offer ‘the services’. They saying: “You know, I could help” 🙂 HAHA
      Happened with me many times 🙂 Men are hilarious.
      About the guns – so far haven’t seen any die-hard-heroes on the daily streets, but ppl are dying. All i know.

  8. You said that 91% of Americans killed by guns every day, which seems impossible to me as in two days there would be none of us left. I looked it up and found out that on an average day, 96 Americans are killed with guns.

      • If there are 326,097,250 people in the USA and 90% are killed each day, then after one day 293,487,525 would be killed leaving only 32,609,725 or 10 percent of the population still alive. In 8 days only 3 people would be left. Sometimes you need to think around the numbers, it is clear to me that 90 percent of the people dying every day is a mistake.

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