Our Music: The Strength and Wisdom of Grandmothers

by Susanne Maziarz, Music Director at Neighbourhood

I first became aware of the Raging Grannies at the Melancthon Quarry protest that the Spirit Choir attended at Queen’s Park. A group of brightly dressed older women attracted a lot of attention when they began singing protest songs for all to hear. It was incredibly moving to see this particular demographic, vulnerable and innocent, speaking – no, singing – out so strongly. Everyone knows you should listen to your grandmother!

Belief in the Disir (or Divine Grandmothers, the Mothers of Time) is ancient and runs through all societies. The Celts listened to their older spokeswomen since they believed that The Crone had the power to create their mountain ranges. The Malay thought there were three grandmothers, the Kari-Under-The-Earth, who would cause floods if not listened to respectfully. There were the Druids, who believed that the souls of old wise women lived on in the trees that surrounded them. The Norse Nanna, or Anna, doubled as Earth Mother. And on this Turtle Island where we live (North America), the Iroquois teach that the Woman who fell down from the sky was the Mother of All.

From the most ancient times, the strong, wise, older women were the ones who advised, mediated and fought for what was right. The Toronto Gaggle of the Raging Grannies will be singing for what’s right at our service on Sunday, October 4th and leading a protest song-writing workshop following from 12:15 – 1 pm. Come listen to what they have to sing.