If the cure to colonial mentality is a mental and spiritual decolonization then the cure to crab mentality has to be what I now call Shine Mentality.
In 2002, I remember speakiing to a group of women in the Manila at a Wowee! Workshop on women’s wisdom. When I told them that there is room in this world for everyone to shine because inside all women are fabulous—I got a lot of unbelieving looks. A lot of women around the world, even in the United States, the birthplace of the term liberated woman, don’t believe that they’ve got fabulous-ness or the ability to shine within their own selves in the first place.
I know that most of those Filipino women, like me, were raised up to be quiet and demure—keep your legs closed and your thoughts to yourself….etc, etc. Little do most of us mahinhin/lady like Filipinas realize that some of these tenets of femininity have suppressed our full expression of who we are and have prevented us from pursuing our dreams. It’s how we’re raised and how our environments influence us that cause us to limit ourselves, and to want to limit others too, even bring them down.
We all need to discover for ourselves how we can live life to the fullest and to also discover how we can want others to live to their fullest potential too. What keeps people from “shining”? What causes people to want others to not shine or to bring down others with their crab mentality?