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Jane Fonda: Why women are at the forefront of climate solutions

In October 2019, Jane Fonda launched “Fire Drill Fridays,” weekly protests centered on climate change and calling for an end to new fossil fuels, a just transition to a renewable economy, and demands that Congress pass the Green New Deal. The protests began in Washington DC, and in February 2020, Fonda joined forces with Greenpeace and other allies and the movement shifted to California and to communities across the country.

For thousands of years, a patriarchal paradigm has ruled. It’s the paradigm that has led to the climate crisis, an extractive, use-up-and-discard mentality that treats workers, those who are different, women and the natural world as commodities, at men’s disposal, for their enjoyment and their profit. Around the world, in countries such as Hungary, Brazil, India, the UK, Turkey, the Philippines, Russia and the US, we can see the apotheosis of this toxic mind-set in the nationalistic tyrants, strongmen and would-be dictators.

Under the millennial-old patriarchal rule, the feminine principle has been not destroyed but suppressed. The spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle, in his book A New Earth, writes that this has “enabled the ego to gain absolute supremacy in the collective human psyche.”

He adds that it is harder for the ego to take root in the female than in the male because women are “more in touch with the inner body and the intelligence of the organism where the intuitive faculties originate,” have “greater openness and sensitivity toward other lifeforms,” and are “more attuned to the natural world.”

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