The Microbiology of Attunement and Women’s Natural Affinity for It

The human nervous system is feminine by construction and intention. This is one of the reasons that women are more likely than men to be able to easily and naturally practice the art of attunement. Men would do well to learn the art of attunement from women.

Attunement is an order of magnitude beyond empathy or compassion. It is a state of being-with, perceiving, and feeling entelechy and somatically comprehending it. Complete and thorough attunement requires the capacity to see another in the context of the full spectrum of their existence. This capacity is inherent in motherhood.

The human nervous system is mycorrhizal and plant-like in its ability to soak up and circulate experience. Like trees, the nervous system uses transpiration to absorb the external world and integrate it. This transpiring activity is non-differentiating until one interacts with the process directly and consciously. The extent to which this can be done is influenced by both genetics and epigenetics, which, of course, are, in themselves, highly interactive with each other. The ongoing practice of interacting with your own nervous system, learning from it and responding to it, allows you to transcend both genetics and epigenetics.

The inherent soaking or absorbing nature of the nervous system can be interfered with, but the transpiration can never be completely halted. Within the indefatigable essence of the nervous system, meaning at the very root of its structure, lies the secret of resilience. The Embryonic Intelligence in everyone knows this secret. Indeed, it is whispered continuously as the humming soundscape for the nervous system’s dance.

I suspect that the great silence that some women carry is the abode for the complexity of integration that comes from this absorption. Resilience arises out of the transfiguring wisdom of overcoming extraordinary and multi-faceted existential threats, such as the one we now face. We have done this before when we were embryos. The most important thing we can do right now is to remember that. That is why I created a system for remembering called the Rediscovery Journey™.

The second most important thing we can do is give voice to what we remember. For many women invisibility has become the singular comfort. The fear of speaking what we know is so carved into us that it is like a tattoo on the spirit. Crone Speak was created to end that crusty lineage and differentiate the past from the present via modeling. It is safe now to speak. See me? I am doing it and it only makes me stronger.

I suspect that we will be saved through the articulation of what we claim to have forgotten, that which is buried in silence. Once that silence is released through our nervous system mycorrhiza, transpired through the xylem and phloem tubes and tissues of our nervous systems, we will speak with clarity and power. Look at all we appear to have forgotten.  We have forgotten our unity, our kinship with the natural world, our fluidity with the unseen and the power of our voices to protect those who cannot speak for themselves. We have forgotten our Original Brilliance. It is in reclaiming all of these, which are within reach, that we will be able to build the future that the children who are in utero right now, were conceived to inhabit.

NB: Special thanks to biologist Jenny Spurgeon for sharing her notes and visuals about transpiration with me and teaching me about the circulation of nutrients in plants.



Attunement: Think of an orchestra, and the conductor’s task of synthesizing, layering, drawing forth and muting sounds. Attunement is a highly integrative nervous system function that is accessible to everyone. It requires a conscious choice to attune and therefore to conduct, as in the symphony conductor. At its highest expression, this is a weaving of the sounds, dances, and expressions of Original Brilliance in the seen and unseen world.

Original Brillance: Embryonic intelligence navigates the complex pre and perinatal terrain that manifests life. It is that sensory driven, will-infused orientation and strategizing that is our Original Brilliance. Despite the perpetuation of the falsity that we cannot remember this pre-cognitive experience, it is, in fact, our greatest wisdom and it is always accessible to us.

Phloem: The vascular tissue in plants that conducts metabolic products downward from the leaves.

Xylem: The vascular tissue in plants that conducts water and dissolved nutrients  upward from the root and helps to form the woody element in plant stems.

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