by CPS Partner Jed Diamond, Ph.D, founder of MenAlive
I first met Riane Eisler in 1987 shortly after the publication of her book, The Chalice & the Blade: Our History, Our Future. I remember discussing our views on the future of humanity and the healing that needed to occur between men and women. My first book, Inside Out: Becoming My Own Man had been published in 1983, where I described my own healing journey. At a time when many female writers were blaming men for the problems in the world, I appreciated that Riane understood that the problem was not men, but the system of domination that harmed both women and men.
When I first read these words in The Chalice & the Blade, I was moved by their simplicity, vision, and truth: “Underlying the great surface diversity of human culture are two basic models of society. “The first, which I call the dominator model, is what is popularly termed either patriarchy or matriarchy—the ranking of one half of humanity over the other. The second, in which social relations are primarily based on the principle of linking rather than ranking, may best be described as the partnership model. In this model—beginning with the most fundamental difference in our species, between male and female—diversity is not equated with either inferiority or superiority.”
Over the years her work has been featured in many of my books and articles. In The Warrior’s Journey Home: Healing Men, Healing the Planet, I quoted her words in describing our Partnership roots in our evolutionary history. In numerous articles, her work was central to my understanding of the world we are in and the world we were moving towards, including:
- Living in the Liminal World of 2020: How to Navigate the Transition Between Domination and Partnership.
- Partnerism: Humanity’s Next Great Adventure For the Post-Coronavirus World.
- The Resurrection of Father Earth and the Return of True Partnership Between Men and Women.
I recently offered the first Diamond Certification and Training Program where Riane’s work was featured. Class members helped create an e-book with articles and reflections that featured her work: Survive and Thrive in the Post-Covid World: Your Guide for a Partnership Future.
A number of years ago I heard that Riane and her husband David Loye needed a ride to Ukiah where Riane was giving a presentation about The Real Wealth of Nations: Creating a Caring Economy. I offered to drive down, pick them up, and take them to the venue. It was a wonderful opportunity to renew our connection and for me to meet her husband. The day we spent together deepened my understanding of the depth and breadth of her ongoing work and to learn about the incredible work that David Loye was involved with including exciting new books he had written including:
- Darwin’s Lost Theory: Bridge to a Better World.
- Measuring Evolution: A Leadership Guide to the Health and Wealth of Nations.
- Darwin on Love: The True Story of Evolution.
- 3000 Years of Love: The Life of Riane Eisler and David Loye.
The latter book about how Riane and David met, fell in love, and built a life together, touched me deeply. It showed the centrality of relationship in her work and in their lives. Their relationship paralleled my own with my forty-one year marriage with my wife, Carlin. Our own story is contained in my book, The Enlightened Marriage: The 5 Transformative Stages of Relationship and Why the Best is Still to Come.
Fortunately, Riane’s work is still evolving and deepening because the world needs Partnership now, more than ever.