Healthy monogamous?

Ravished for life post – see usual disclaimers.

Separate disclaimer:  This is going to be a long one – I am building a case, sort of, for monogamy and since I gave this a lot of thought I am sure this will span several thousands of words.  Of course if you are not interest – I am not really trying to convince you.  The purpose here is for people who want to be monogamous but feel it is ‘against their nature’ to do so.

One of the things that stuck with me about J Ribs reply from my post “a well mannered atheist” is the notion that:

(start quote)

Christian morality counters the idea that sex is perfectly healthy, that children should be terrified by the threat of eternal sacrifice, and that bathing in blood is a glorifying image. Christian morality is not compatibleu with secular morality on issues that conflict with well-being like these, and the rest are just secular moral values.

(end quote)

Now I actually don’t want to write this post as a Christian because ravished for life is not inherently a religious affiliation.  Yes some of the ideas are Biblically inspired (credit where credit is due?) but the idea is much bigger than smuggling a Bible in through the back door and bashing people over the head.

Anyway I find the whole idea that all of Christianity’s ideas about sex can be swept under one single rug rather narrow minded.  With just a little bit of effort, on the internet, I should be able to find a gay Muslim quite easily.  Granted these views are still marginalized within Islam but I suspect that anybody who keenly observes these issues, with me, from the side-line will notice that there is a ‘cultural revolution’ (I am choosing the word revolution on purpose) going on in Islam not very much unlike the ‘sexual revolution’ in Christianity that started at the protestant reformation and was surely influence by the cultural ‘reformation’ of the sixties?

The problem is that inside the ‘Christian moral system’ there are two major opposing view points that oppose each other and is by no means marginalized.  Anybody who makes a statement about Christian morals should specify to which of they two they are referring.  And of course it can even get more complicated that these two but because other views are arguably marginalized it can be forgiven if one ‘slip over them’.  The two major views are:

  1. The view of the Catholic church that procreation is an essential part of any sexual expression and that it is a sin to interfere with it by means of contraception.
  2. The major Protestant view that sex is as much for recreation in a secure intimate relationship as it is for procreation and that there is no sin in using contraception.

Now I am by no means Catholic but I do accept truth wherever I see it.  In fact one of my favourite quotes comes from an atheist/skeptic Voltaire:

I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it,” (interesting side note – apparently these words were not Voltaire’s own words but attributed to him by Evelyn Beatrice Hall following an interpretation of his “Essay on Tolerance” – I did not know that until today when I looked around for the quote :-).  Naturally I will not blame somebody if they quote Voltaire as saying this because the words are widely attributed to him – this brings up another interesting discussion on ‘the principles of true inerrancy?’  One for another day unfortunately).

Back to the Catholic vs Protestant position:

As much as I think the Catholic position is ‘a little extreme’ in its application I, at the same time, think that the Protestant position is a little too loose in its possible interpretation.

Firstly we need to recognise that the first add for a condom only appeared in the New York Times as late as 1861 and the pill only arrived during the 1950’s.

So the first point to consider – and yes it sounds rather Catholic:

Since just more that 50 years ago the ‘main stream’ individual’s sexual encounters would almost always be followed by pregnancy sooner or later.  So whatever you say about sex being “perfectly healthy” (looking at you J Rib) you need to keep into account first and foremost that as a naturalist you are committed to arguing for evolution.  So you would have to acknowledge that we (that is our bodies) ‘probably’ adapted with the idea in mind that having sex will lead to babies.  Let’s go through the logical motions one step at a time:

  1. The average hunter-gatherer would, in my mind, probably have initiated sexual activity at the age of 16 or slightly higher at the point where the sexual organs (as noted by the size of the breasts 🙂 ) were fully developed.  I am open to the idea that experimentation with sex took place earlier (puberty turns on at around 12 after all) but I foresee a situation where actual intercourse before full maturation would probably have ended in a lot of cephalo-pelvic disproportions resulting in a high number of maternal deaths.
  2. Shortly after initiating sex (probably within 6 months) the average hunter-gather female would fall pregnant.  This would in all likelihood last around 9 months after which she would give birth.
  3. Now here follows an interesting side thought.  I have an idea that if the ‘modern’ lifestyle were more protective of pregnant women and if breast feeding were exclusive and on demand (in other words every time the child cries for it – yes feminist I am looking at you who refuses to be a pacifier) then the contraceptive effect of the oxytocinon and prolactin would be much stronger.  I actually foresee that on average a women would continue breastfeeding for a number of years into the child’s life and as such the frequency of breast feeding would ensure that there would only be a risk of pregnancy from round about two years into the child’s life.  This is highly speculative but when added up the number do coincide with what we see – sort off :-).
  4. Add to this the notion that the average hunter-gatherer male is unlikely to be able to protect more than 3 females at the same time and is highly unlikely to be able to provide for more than 20 children – again I am no anthropologist so the conversation remains open.  I at least envision a scenario in which everyone who is not a sultan or a king would have to be content with 2 wives (3 at maximum).
  5. Add to this the notion that the average hunter-gatherer male is unlikely to be able to protect said wives/women from the age of forty onwards against younger competing males.  A situation now occurs that highly depends upon bonding.  If we take that most men reach their physical peak in the early twenties we are in a scenario where the average hunter-gatherer male would ‘court’ a female that is between five and ten years younger than himself if we assume that ‘the younger the better’ but this is highly speculative.  I reckon at the age of 30 she may very well still be appealing when he is around forty so there is a need for bonding because we want a scenario in which ‘if he is beaten up’ by a younger competing male she would still prefer him for social reasons.  This explains at least in part why women have evolved with a more secure relationship in mind – I think.
  6. Naturally I don’t think having more than one wife is against the law and on this very blog space I have voiced my strong opinions on the hypocrisy of letting anybody who wants to get married be married no matter what sex they are yet we do not allow more than one person to be married be cause that is suddenly ‘EVIL!’.  My reasons for advocating lifelong monogamy has to do with spiritual reasons.  I believe that the level of intimacy required to satisfy my soul is impossible to achieve with multiple sexual partners but I will get to this point later.  For now let it be said that sex is definitely healthy as long as children is part of the equation.  So whatever measures are placed upon sex should have procreation as at least one factor in mind.  I will discuss contraception later – please just allow for this notion to be true until about a hundred years ago.  I am building a case here slowly.  Not rapid firing a few points.

Now this is where it gets tricky.  If we allow that the offspring will die on an average of at least one or two per life cycle of the above relationships and if we allow that the above premises are true (of course I am open to debating them one by one) we still get to an average of 8 to 12 children per couple.  No matter how I bend the numbers I cannot get to a situation where every man just bangs every woman that crosses his path and then moves on to the next one while leaving the previous pregnant women to the lions and wolves.  Even if you allow that society kicked in fairly early in the life of Homo Sapiens you have to agree that once a man and women found in each other ‘favorable DNA for procreation’ some form of protection against ‘the outside world’ would have been preferable at least for a season which had be to until the child was able to sustain itself in remedial tasks.

But I have to balance this notion with the reality that men are sexually turned on by novelty.  Most men will gladly have sex with any women that crosses their path.  In fact the only thing that will stop a man from having sex with any possible women that crosses his path, and is willing, is the fear of possible negative consequences…

….wait a minute….

….did I just say that the fear of negative consequences will stop a man from having sex with any women that crosses his path?

….I must make sure because once on this path I will not be able to turn back!

Oh who am kidding? 🙂

I was building up to this point for the last 1700 words.

So let’s carry on.

You see the advocate of monogamy under these circumstances don’t have to claim that the act of having sex, in and of itself, is either wrong, immoral or unhealthy.  Al that is necessary to start a case like this is to claim that ‘under certain circumstances – sexual restraint is in order’.  The rest of the discussion then can be about what said circumstances should be.

It is extremely difficult to build a casd that the pleasure from having sex evolved that way simply for the purpose of having fun.  When you add to this the Oxytocinon and other ‘bonding factors’ that come into play during times of having intercourse then a case of ‘having sex’ simply as a means of pleasure is impossible to prove from an evolutionary point of view.

But I do realize this is not what the atheist/naturalist is saying.  The naturalist is simply saying that although sex is also for procreation we should recognize that sex can also be a ‘healthy’ form of recreation.   I definitely recognize that in nature a lot of species exists who are frequently monogamous but will occasionally or sometimes often, in times of abundance, engage sexually with multiple partners and even partners of the same sex.  I confess I was a bit sad to find out that dolphins are mong these :-).  I also acknowledge that in other mammal societies such as dolphins ‘midwives’ help with the birthing process and not the male but this, I feel, does not negate my view that in hunter-gatherer Homo Sapiens the male is at least indirectly involved in the early raising of the child.  Survival skills have to be taught after all.

But the point remains that there do exist species out there who just want to settle down and raise a family together.  Granted most of them are not mammals but that is hardly the point.  These animals act instinctively and I will say something about this when I talk more about intimacy but for now we just need to agree that these animals are not being ‘unhealthy’ when they ‘restrain’ their sexual activity to one individual.  The more I think about this the more upset I get about the idea that advocates of monogamy are against the idea that sex is healthy.  People such as myself who advocate for monogamy from a secular perspective think there are extremely good reasons to believe that monogamy has been the way to go for most of our history and that whatever restraints ‘have to’ be associated with it can and probably is extremely healthy in the long run.  But as the article emphasizes – if nothing else it remains controversial.

So let me back track for a moment and talk about the methods that we have been using to prevent pregnancy.

Enter ‘the contraceptive pill’.

Naturally I am not speaking against the responsible use of the pill.  I am speaking against the idea that ‘sex is perfectly healthy’.  The contraceptive pill that is generally recognized as the ‘safest’ is Yaz (South Africa brand).  This is all theoretical because the assumption here is that lesser amounts of side effects necessarily follows from smaller concentrations of hormones.  Now I use the web site drugwatch.com when referring to controversial side effects.  Although the side effects of use are well known and undisputed (just read the packet insert) it is the legal information that we are interested in.  Remember the point that we are disputing is that casual sex with no inclusion of the possibility of pregnancy is perfectly healthy.  What makes Yaz interesting is the fact that this is a prime example of how ‘their is a way that seems right unto a man….but….’  According to the drug watch site there has been about 10 000 cases involving negative side effects of Yaz with up to 8 200 being settled by Bayer a total of 1.7 billion.  What really scares me is that Yaz is still considered lucrative despite those numbers.  Now don’t get me wrong. As a medical practitioner I have prescribed Yaz more times than I can count.  I have actually bought into the idea that Yaz is the safest one out there.  I don’t buy the idea that ‘lesser doses over slightly greater periods is worse than larger doses over slightly shorter periods’.  I do think there might be something to be said for products striving for bio-equivalence like Angeliq but even so the levels of hormones that are needed for ovulatory suppression is still several times higher than what would be considered normal.

I personally know  about two people whose lives were completely altered after taking the pill.  The first one was a medical student who was a few years older than me.  She went for a knee operation but at the time she was on the pill because she recently got married.  A few weeks after the operation she was pushing another patient in a wheel chair when she collapsed – and died.  The second case is a young married women who, granted, was also a smoker.  She went about her business quietly while one day, out of the blue… she had a stroke.  Thankfully she survived it but she was permanently disabled.  Of course Bayer would say that these cases are anecdotal and I am fine with that.  I think the scientific method is completely messed up anyway.  However Bayer would have to explain why they have been willing up to this point to spend 1.7 billion on settlements if the product is completely harmless.  When I got married I gave the list of side effects associated with all the contraceptives one look and told my wife “you are not getting on this – I would rather have you pregnant”.  So we used condoms and naturally she fell pregnant fairly quickly :-).  Afterwards we sterilized and I have been ‘home free’ since that time :-).  And yes I talk to my patients about the side effects but the reality is that most people today will ‘stomach’ the risk of side effects because they simply cannot tolerate the idea of falling pregnant ‘at this particular time’.  And that’s okay but we shouldn’t go as far as saying that ‘casual sex is perfectly healthy’.  This kind of sex always comes at a price.  The question is not is it perfectly healthy?.  It isn’t perfectly healthy – no question about that – the only question is whether you are willing to pay the price associated with it.  A lot of people are and power to them.  But as Bayer will be the first to admit.  The price of true casual sex can be up to 1.7 billion.

Then we aren’t even talking about STD’s.  And I am not going to waste time talking about STD’s because I want to uphold the sanctity of sex.  I might say that the high incidence of STD’s says something about the world’s willingness to use condoms.  Mark Gungor once humorously commented that “having sex with a condom is like eating an ice cream through a sock.  I agree.  I once read a female atheist blogger who said that there is no shame in two consenting adults.  Who in the complete civilized world with any credibility ever disputed that?!  Of course there is no shame in it but it is bloody damn dangerous!!  This article cites a projection from the chambers of mines that treating a person with HIV over an average period of 10 years costs around 70 000 – 80 000 South Africa Rands.  This article from AVERT claims that it sites the UN Gap report of 2014 on how many people are living with HIV.  I don’t even want to quote the number – it is so staggering.  Of course what hurts the most is that all these deaths and all these costs can be overcome in one generation if we only stop preaching the lie that ‘casual sex is completely healthy’.

All right now onto the issues of intimacy.

As everybody would agree – human beings have a highly developed pre-frontal cortex.  This rises our ability of self awareness and abstract reasoning to a level where probably no animal can possibly compete with us.

When I read a bit about animals and depression I came across this article and this article which I find utterly fascinating.  Here is the thing:

  1. In order to ‘really commit suicide’ you have to be able to plan a set of circumstances that will result in your death.
  2. Also you have to have the emotional self awareness that let’s you realize that ‘things are bad and they are not going to get any better’.

Or at least so we thought.  It is well known that certain animals will self destruct – like bees protecting their nest.  Is it possible that suicide is a form of ‘instinctive protection’ from further suffering?

If you have time consider reading this article on the rise and fall of prefrontal lobotomies.  Many people think that lobotomies have simply been displaced by electro-convulsive therapy.  The point is that when our prefrontal cortex is ‘reduced’ through whatever means then our ‘discontentment’ with our emotions are also reduced.  This is important because nobody comes close to the hypothalamus, the basal ganglia and the caudate nuclues as far as I can make out so the basic processing of these emotions are still very much intact.  It’s only the emotional awareness that is altered.  For better or for worse depending on what you believe about the physical ‘destructive’ methods of treating mental illness.

My position in short is that animals do not suffer emotionally like humans do because they lack the prefrontal cortex capacity to do so – I’m sorry for offending all the ‘animal rights activists’ out there.  Yes they suffer and no we should not treat them ill but frankly our reasons for doing so are better justified by spiritual reasons than naturalistic ones.  We have a mandate from our creator to fill and till the earth and to take care of it.  Let’s leave it at that because any other naturalistic explanation for needing to do so becomes very tricky very quickly.  According to the second law of thermodynamics the world is going south after all.

The question here is:

How deeply do humans bond with each other if they abstain from sex until they have bonded on a personal level with their sexual partner?

From this point on I will merely speculate so pass right over if you don’t agree with me.

For starters I will refer you to a quote from one of my favorite books”

Mal 2:16 “For the man who does not love his wife but divorces her, says the LORD, the God of Israel, covers his garment with violence, says the LORD of hosts. So guard yourselves in your spirit, and do not be faithless.”  (ESV)

Also I want to at least point you towards the idea expressed in this article.  This article suites my purposes because the writer wants to empower women to actually be able to have casual sex more ‘easily’.  And that’s okay but she (?) mentions in the article that women are programmed to attach while men are programmed to detach.  Personally I cannot think of any reason (it is of course open for discussion) on an evolutionary basis why men would be ‘programmed to detach’.  Unless we assume that evolution has not yet reached ‘perfection’ I would imagine that programming has anything to do with it.  To me this is more indicative of the fact that ‘something went wrong along the line’.

Gen 3:16″ Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.”

I am sorry for going all spiritual here – all of this is open for debate.  We start the conversation around the notion of positive effects towards the ‘propagating of DNA’ and we discuss how the attachment of the majority of women ties in with the ‘detachment’ of the majority of men and how this ‘benefits the system’.

I am struggling to find good research on how casual sex interferes with the ‘normal secretion of oxytocinon’.

Since I can’t find any I will refrain from going dogmatic.

My position is simply that human beings form intense emotional bonds.  When they abstain from sex until they are emotionally secure in the relationships the bonds that they form are so strong that they cannot be broken without severe psychological trauma.  For this reason it is very dangerous to me to compare the sexual behavior of humans with that of animals although certain minor correlations can be drawn.  As it is the American institute of stress (can be found at stress.org) cites the two major causes of stress and reactive depression to be the death of a loved one which is shortly followed by divorce.  While loosing all your money (and hence physical security) is an important contributor people do not throw themselves off of a bridge because their favorite team did not win.

It’s all about what you really want out of life.

Because if I am right then you can’t have your bread – and have it buttered.

If my position is true then oxytocinon and its brothers diminish every time you have casual sex.  Also since oxytocinon depends on ‘strong memories’ it makes sense that have ‘this level of intimacy’ with multiple partners is simply confusing to your hypothalamus.

The question is whether your previous sexual encounters have any impact on your current ones.

And whether you can be ravished by more than one person.

I don’t believe you can.  Every time I have watched pornography it has interfered with my marriage and not just from my wives perspective.  The amount of men who are willing to claim that they have had their sexual desires significantly altered simply by stopping with pornography is absolutely staggering.  Of course most of these guys were not looking for novelty.  They were wanting to invest in their ‘monogamous’ relationship.

To the men out there:

If you want novelty – which I grant most of us do at some level – then go right ahead and bang every girl who is willing to bang you.

But if there is any part of you that is taking this thing of being married and raising a family seriously then I have something here that might motivate you.

I believe that if you wait for one girl and then stick with her and actually ‘work’ on you relationship you will achieve a level of intimacy that you did not know you even wanted – but I promise you it is absolutely fucking perfect.

That feeling of having somebody in your corner at all times and under all circumstances who is always willing to share life and bed with you and will let you do whatever you want with her whenever you want to do it and all she asks is that you take some time to listen to her and have a little fun outside of the bedroom and every now and then do something really fucking stupid like going to the theater and ‘help out around the house – you know’ and if you do that there won’t be debate on whose making the food because ‘your thanks is all she needs 🙂 ‘  – all right I am getting ahead of myself.  Nothing is that perfect.

But I do believe it is worth it.

Again – this is not for the guy who is happy to take beauty and use for his own selfish needs.

And yes that’s all of us to a degree but it is a very, very, very, very, very sad day when we start saying that

CASUAL SEX IS PERFECTLY HEALTHY

Who are you kidding J Rib?

P.S.  I actually have more to say on this topic but this is getting ridiculous :-).

If you stayed until the end I sincerely thank you

The complete coop experience – the state of the South African police ‘system’

One of my patients came to me recently sharing with me how the cops had ‘interrogated’ him.

Just when I thought nothing about the South African peace keeping and justice system could shock me anymore.

So the story goes that one of his business partners was brutally murdered a while ago.

Turns out the police was suspecting him at least as an accomplice in the crime.

So what happens.  He gets arrested.  The “secret police” (12 of them) comes into his house without a warrant.  Drags him off (he wasn’t able to get a lawyer in time) to a ‘private interrogation facility’ and tortures him for four hours just to find out “who masterminded the crime”.  I mean we are talking head under the water kind of torture with plastic bags over the head and stuff like that.

Thank God the guy was mentally strong and was able to insist on his ignorance and innocence.

Eventually when the ‘police or who ever the hell they were’ figured out’ (took them four hours to do this) that he really did not know anything – or alternatively that he was mentally the strongest person alive – they dropped him off without so much as an apology.  And yes he was not arrested subsequently.

And yes I will be assisting him all the way even if I have to testify in court ‘at no extra charge’.

This on the back of another incident where the police shot a guy ‘in cold blood’.

The facts according to news reports seem to  be:

  1. The guy shot about eight times at the police
  2. He subsequently ran away to the get away car
  3. In the pursuit a police officer was able to wound him in the leg
  4. He fell onto the ground and was incapacitated
  5. Subsequently two separate police officer came and shot him – the last one a bullet two the head

Now these officers are in jail.

So let me just take a deep breath before I say this.

Because I don’t trust the level of corruption in this country I do not want the police to have ‘martial law’ appropriated to them – because I believe that they will abuse it and a lot of innocent people will die.  In other words – our country is so full of criminals that it is impossible to know the good guys from the bad guys.

But I do not know what I will do after I am able to incapacitate a guy who shot at me 8 times.  I certainly believe that I would kill him – the same way the cop did.

This raises the age old question – where do things stop being ‘in self defense’.

I mean we want to believe that our police is ‘above human emmotions’ but frankly who of us would ‘calmly subdue’ a man who just tried to take our lives.

Also we know that by our justice system the same crazy gun-blazing asshole would have been back on the street in less than a month.

Also we know that 63 police (according to the report) died in the last term from fatal gunshot wounds.

Also we know that close to 50 people are muredered in South Africa every day(citation needed).

Also we know that suicide is some of the highest among police members (citation needed I know).

Our country is unraveling fast and it shows.

I can’t help but wonder how bad things are going to have to get before the people decide to vote differently – but that’s another rant for another day.

Because it seems to me that at the moment it is easier to

  1. Vote for the ANC
  2. Manipulate the ANC into doing what you want through ‘unwarranted’ methods like striking, protesting and vandalizing property.
  3. Get what you want for the moment at the cost of your safety and your economic stability because
  4. Who cares – you can’t get those things anyway even if you play fare because corruption is allowed to flourish to the point where anyone who plays by the rules is gauranteed to loose.

As video games get better those of us who do not do so well in the real world are really looking for ways out of it.

I have kind of made peace with the fact that emigration is not really an option anymore.

One of those ways, we do however get out, is the world of MMOs

So I started playing Final Fantasy X14 with Carla a while ago in the high hopes that this would really turn out to be something special.  After its revamp it is one of the highest rated MMOs on the scene after all.

So we dowloaded the free version and hoped for the best.

What a disappointment :-).

For starters the trial version did not allow us to do the things that a husband and wife would want to do when playing together.  We couldn’t even form a group let alone ‘get married’.

Secondly we made the mistake of starting in different towns so we had to slog through the first chapter completely by ourselves.  Which in a way helped us to see the game for what it is in single player.

So now I am having to build up the courage to go for Elder scrolls online (I am a huge fan of skyrim even though I have not played the other installments).   I have been keeping an eye on the game since its release and I was sort of impressed with the amount of ‘repairs’ that went into it.

But without the abillity to play as a group it seems a bit of a waste.  Although I suppose if there are enough ‘side activities’ it may be worth it.  We may do the campaign seperately and tackle the coop sections with other players.

In wrestling with this issue as buyers remorse and depression do not go well together (funny how some things appear entirely trivial but for people struggling with depression it becomes a major issue 🙂 ) I actually realized how desperate I am to get out of the world.

I don’t want to die – not anymore at least.

Its just that breathing is painful.

And although it is possible to ‘pull yourself together’ and focus on the ‘upside of life’ it certainly is not the default position and as such requires an amount of energy that is not always there.

I have however stopped worrying about this being a moral failure.

Thankfully I frequently deal a lot with addicts because of my line of work and I am well familiar with the notion of struggling to maintain your ‘first choice’.

But recently I had to be honest with myself and admit that coop/MMO games are probably never going to give me what I want/need.

As much as I want ‘a world outside of this one’ in which I can dissapear it does not afford me the level of relational depth that my ‘soul’ needs.  Artifiial intelligence is after all just that – artificial.

Recently when I was playing Wolfenstein the new order with Carla I was pleasantly surprized by the character Tesla.  She is a proverbial ‘mad scientist’ loosely based on, or at least in homage to, the real life person of Nikola Tesla.  She is a complete naturalist and as such a determenist (although I get that some theoretical physicists such as Michio Kaku do not think that naturalism and determenism are one and the same thing).  I get that you may not be able to predict on which side of the fence the electron will jump but I still don’t see how you can ‘demand justice’ in a naturalistic world.  It’s all just electrons man – let the murderers and rapists go about their business and follow their electrons.  Perhaps we lock them up because it is ‘inconvenient’ to have them around.  Certainly any sense of justice is still merely an illusion :-).  But it was an exceptionally nice touch to have this discussion tucked up in a video game and I loved the irony when the battle hardened veteran took the ‘soft’ approach.  Beautifully done.

So I reallised that the perfect coop game is the one that happens in real life.

It’s just getting there that is the real challenge.

How to raise enough dopamine simply by ‘living it out’ in a world that is set against me thriving with the ones I love?

It is really difficult to ‘keep the eyes set on Jesus – the beginning and ending…..’

If not impossible.

Frankly I would say that in our world it is impossible.

But Carla made a statement the other day that is still sitting with me.  I’m still chewing on it.

We were talking about how difficult, if not impossible, it is to ‘keep the faith’ in this thoroughly broken world of ours.

Carla then said however that she was at a place where she did not feel that God would blame her if she stopped believeing in him – it’s all just too painfull.  I of course agreed with this notion – but then she followed it up with the point that because she knows that God would not blame her – the mere thought brings her back to the place of wanting to serve him?!  :-).  So true but how ironic?  But true nonetheless.

Playing coop has opened me up to a lot of things that my heart really wants but has hidden away because of pain.

As much as I think Witcher 3 and Fallout 4 and and even the recent Mad Max are excellent open world games I have no desire to play them.  All they are going to do is isolate me and I don’t have enough Dopamine left to get up from the couch and go back to work after I have been succumbed to the emotional rewards that come from playing games without having to do the actual work.  My brain is tired.  Which is a shame because I love to ‘disapparate’ into the world of imagination.

So the perfect coop experience will happen tonight when the family watches the movie ‘inside out’ together.

I know it is not a game but this is as far as I go because I need to finish what I have started.

My life is not going to live itself and there is still one or two positive things about it…

It’s just – the pain you know.

I’m actually shedding a few ‘man tears’ as I am typing here for reasons completely unknown to me.

That’s depression for you.

When nobody looks I cry.

When I am sure nobody is around I bawl but I admit that hasn’t been in a while.

I kinda miss it.

A well mannered atheist? This is how you dialogue by the way (praising an atheist).

The following comments is an exchanged that followed this video.
I was extremely impressed with J Ribs’s soft mannered and logical response.  It is telling to me that his second response was left unanswered.
I only regret getting on the scene 7 months after the event because I would have loved to have an exchange with this guy.  The world needs more people like this.  If anybody wants lessons in how to dialogue – I present:
J RIBS
So here follows the comments and I suppose I will say something but I actually just want to give credit for his engaging way of acknowledging the strengths and weaknesses of his arguments while maintaining a reasonable tone at the same time.  It is so rare for me to find an atheist that is not a pompous asshole that when it happens I sincerely want to hand out kudos.  And no – this post is not written in irony.  I really respect this person.
(Start quote)
The moral framework I use, and most humanists use, is one based on the well-being of conscious creatures, but mostly humans. Well-being is a vague term, and nailing down what is important within the definition is difficult, if not impossible. But, it can be narrowed, easily in most cases. So never say we don’t have a moral framework again. K?
Why is “well-being” good given the atheistic, naturalist, materialist view that humans are star dust or random biological organisms who appeared on some random rock by chance? Why is it good for one of these creatures to have well-being? How do you know it is good and not just socially advantageous or something? You can’t account for good and evil given your presuppositions. Only Christianity can. This is why I say you have no moral framework.
+Keith Thompson I understand the view you have and can see why my position is problematic. It is. But when we make the basis of morality on well-being, our moral framework is reasonable. You can see that atheists must have a highly functioning moral framework, given that an individual atheist is much less likely to go to jail for a crime. You’re correct that all I can say to justify the basis of well-being is subjective experience. However, I have to make this jump because I can see no better alternative. Absolutes can be made on the basis of well-being. First we must say that well-being is very subjective, but if we were to ask a doctor or psychologist what would be healthy for a person, they would generally say things like: regular exercise, a childhood where an individual was correctly nurtured, well-fed, had two parents, etc. Using the broad idea of well-being, we can make an absolute claim such as cutting a child’s throat is bad. Why? Because it’s obvious that any health expert would say that this does damage to the child physically and mentally for the moments that it cries in pain. I understand your view because I had been a Christian for many years. However, I don’t think we’ll agree very much, but I hope it was helpful to have an honest and concise answer for why we don’t see atheists commit immoral acts. Christian morality counters the idea that sex is perfectly healthy, that children should be terrified by the threat of eternal sacrifice, and that bathing in blood is a glorifying image. Christian morality is not compatibleu with secular morality on issues that conflict with well-being like these, and the rest are just secular moral values. Having an all powerful judge scares many into not committing a crime. Fair enough. But we atheists have an innate repulsion to immoral acts and injustice and could not bear living with ourselves if we made everybody else’s lives worse. I don’t need the threat of hell to call my mother to make her less lonely, to give 50% tips, or to help a friend in need. These acts come from within, because human being generally care about hurting one another and treating others as they would like to be treated.
(end quote)
I am of course ‘sincerely’ frustrated by the fact that Keith Thompson did not respond.  If he did not have a solid answer he should have had the courtesy to acknowledge that he was stumped.  No matter what your position is – you have to admit that this is a good answer.  At the same time the guy/girl uses words like ‘fair enough’, ‘understand the view you have’ and ‘I can see why my position is problematic’.  God forbid – but it seems like we have an atheist here who is actually reasonable.  In my mind Keith walks away from this exchange as simply a prejudiced fool who simply pounced on an argument but is unable to defend it.  Subsequently when found unable to defend it he simply walks away without admitting defeat.  Of course he has every right to but it is unfortunate because the responds from J Rib, in my mind, was good enough to warrant a reply.  I have to ask myself whether he has really thought about the implications of his statements or whether he simply ‘grasped’ the superficial concept and ran with it.  Because, Frankly, I agree with J Rib on this one – he (Keith) should never again say that atheists do not have a moral framework.  Even I am going to try and watch my tongue, on this one, from now on.
A moment of silence, then, please…
As I suspect there may be hope for us after all….
This guy/girl is an absolute ‘gentleman’ and it would be an absolute pleasure to dialogue with him/her
Naturally I will say a few things from the theist perspective but let it be known that I really respect this ‘guy’ and I will try to emulate him/her (getting gatvol of all the repetition so from now on ‘she’ will be a he 🙂 ).
There are at least five points (there is certainly more but this will do) that J Ribs have to answer from the top of my head.
  1. Since he acknowledges that even though his morality is based in ‘conscious well being’ he needs to give us reasons to believe that the well being of conscious beings in general is ‘morally superior’ to the well being of ‘me and those I love’.  This is important because the latter is essentially what drove Hitler by my view.  Hitler simply wanted for him and the people he loved to thrive and there is a good chance, in my mind, that he sincerely believed that the ‘non-Aryans’ were a threat to that kind of life.  Was Hitler evil then or was he simply mistaken?
  2. He needs to understand, by my view, that his morality is just another form of selfishness.  He tips 50% because it is innate to him.  I want to ask him what compels him to ‘do the right thing’ when he either really does not feel like it (is it only the fear of negative consequences that he himself perceives?) or when he is not able to work out the benefit consciously.  I believe he would say that he does not see these things as moral dilemmas, according to his view, and he would be right.  But notice his morality does not include self harm like Jesus exposes in the sermon on the mount.  There is nothing here about turning the other cheek and walking the extra mile.  On his view Ghandi was wasting his time, in a way, as innocent people died through his ‘selfless’ efforts.  This gets really tricky but I will insist that absolutes cannot be made on the basis of well being.  Whose well being?  I don’t want to live in a world where ‘absolutes’ depend on me being able to calculate what the best possible outcome is for the largest amount of conscious beings.
  3. I insist that atheistic naturalists have not provided us with a mechanism on how this view of subjective moral relativism that somehow coincides with a desire to see the ‘thriving of all conscious beings’ could have evolved by random chance mutations and survival of the fittest.  On ‘survival of the fittest’ how did we get to ‘all life is precious and should be upheld at all cost’? – a notion that I, as a theist, hold to be morally superior because I believe human beings are made in the image of God no matter how weak they are.  I can see how we can get to ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto you when their presence is beneficial for survival’ but I simply cannot see how you get to ‘love your enemies and pray for those who spitefully use you’!  Plus it becomes really tricky when you add “do unto others as you would have them do unto you under all circumstances even if their thriving is not significant to your survival or alternatively if they pose a threat to you” – because that is what the sermon on the mount is all about.
  4. As a continuation of 2 and 3 I ask on what basis does he advocate for justice and possibly retribution in the world – if in fact he does because I also acknowledge that the world is, for the most part, devoid of any justice an a lot of people have given up on the idea that justice and liberty are morally superior notions.  As a theist I hold that it is morally superior for human beings to be judged by the concept of ‘an eye for an eye’.  I think this fair.  Of course I don’t think you should cut off a person’s arm who steals but if you think about it – this is not eye for eye.  Naturally I am for the death penalty in the case of eye witnesses to the crime.  I hold that killing is not wrong under all circumstances (self defense?) and I hold that human life is precious enough that it should be avenged if innocently taken.  It is extremely tricky to explain any notion of justice and equity under naturalistic principles.  On naturalism all men are ‘not’ created equal and the ‘have not’ been endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights.  They only have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as long as their democratically elected government affords them said rights.  Thinking of the possibilities where this can go makes me really nervous.
  5. Of course the final word on this issue comes from William Lain Craig in his debate against Sam Harris which can be viewed here.  The gist of the argument confirms that if it can be shown that liars and thieves can ‘thrive’ as a society then stealing can no longer be said to be wrong.  I’ll give an example to illustrate this.  The issue of piracy in entertainment is a highly controversial and discussed topic on the internet.  Consider this article for example although there are many proponents of the ‘benefits of piracy’ on the internet.  The point here is that you can’t say that the conscious thriving of ‘the greater number’ can lead to absolutes.  I believe that piracy is wrong because “the Lord saideth ‘though shaltest not stealtest’ “.  Therefore I believe not taking that which is not yours is always going to be morally superior to ‘serving the masses through stealing’ (yes I am a fan of Robin Hood but remember that no matter how bad you think that EA is – they are not prince John 🙂 ).  But on atheism one may very well make the argument that because piracy ‘benefits the masses – if not the artist‘ it is not wrong.  Bear in mind that I am referring to the carefully thought out benefits as can be found in the above article and not simply in the selfish ‘one on one’ kind of benefit.  It is interesting that J Ribs uses the example of ‘a child having two parents’.  This is ironically the kind of thinking that has come under attack with advent of homosexual marriages in America.  Even if you think that time will tell on whether children need ‘at least one’ parent on both sides of the sexual spectrum you have to admit that it is difficult to assess whose good is ‘the greater good’.  The ‘child’s good’ statistically speaking or the good of the ‘two consenting adults’ or ‘God knows what’?!  Now I am using this simply as an example.  I don’t think this is a good argument for knocking down the argument of ‘absolute moral values from thriving of conscious beings’.  I think the piracy one is better.

I suspect what Keith wanted to say is that an atheist may have a framework for moral duties and they may even hold that  certain framework is the most advantageous but without a perfect being giving us a perfect law you have no justifiable reason to claim that any any moral framework is better, higher or more absolute than another.

Certainly you can’t say that you can derive absolute moral duties from the idea that we need each other to survive.

Without God – all I have to do is figure out a way to survive without other conscious beings “especially humans” and the whole ‘moral framework’ flies out the window…

But having said all this I pray that

God bless J Rib

To me the difference between a fanatic and a person who is simply passionate about their world view is in how they treat those who disagree with them.

If you are from Isis you kill them.

If you are like J Rib

Then you dialogue it out.

Kudos man

Kudos

Worth it all?

And so we go from one breath to the next

One ray to the other

And we can’t help but think

And that’s ok

But it sure is busy

and it sure is quiet

wondering, obsessing

focusing, staring

We does not mean all of us

And I does not mean me

around the corner is the vanity

of the next end of the next rainbow

no I don’t think that forever is now

and I don’t feel that substance is void

But a part of me understands the journey

of getting to nowhere and back again

I love it and them and her and this

but I desire that and these and those

and I am preaching a message

that is not saving me

and I am reaching blindly into the darkness

only for the sacred prize to be out of reach

and I care

I do

And I scorn

I do

what about the children in Nigeria….

What about them?

And what about my children?

How much hunger is ever going to be justified

and how much loneliness is ever going to be full

how painful does it have to be in order to be recognized

simply as painful

Come Lord Jesus

I heard you in the garden

and I hid myself

for I am naked

and ashamed

I am a fornicator and an adulterer at heart

and my bed is undefiled?

I am guilty of manslaughter

I think

but I am the mouth of God?

This pain is never going to go away

or is it

am I simply feeling sorry for myself?

temporal becoming is an illusion?

but I am stuck in the now

it should have been enough

so why isn’t it

my consciousness is me

and I leave my body

only to be sucked back in

I cry for them

only to end up crying for me

this can’t be right

is it

what is right

and so we measure, we compare, we strive

and we bask, we sigh, we bow

and we groan, we grunt, we inevitably…

inhale deeply….

and we push on

although at some level it all feels so wrong

there is still air

but it is going

there is still light

but it is fading

every now and again

life seeps through

a glass of red wine

a laughter – searing through our soul

a promise of eternity

an affirmation

a compliment

an act of worship, adoration

bewildered awe

“it is really good”

it’s all good

it’s all bad

I am stuck in between

I want it to be…

but I am not always sure

if it’s

worth it all….

I hope it is

I hope it will

although I don’t believe it

although I don’t always see it

It’s all good

It’s not at all bad

although I don’t hate it

although I hate it

it is life

it is mine

I don’t want it

I want to share it

what’s the worth

if I get to keep it

if I find it

I will lose it

and if I loose it

I will find it

so please take it

because i can’t take it anymore

that sounded better in my head

a moment ago

seconds in the future

i might, i should, i will

fuck them if they can’t take a joke

bless them for who they are

they are precious

so fucking damn precious

and beautiful

and fragile

and special

and rough

and lovely

and dirty

and worth it all

To worship and fear?

It will be a good day in my life when the Bible can be accepted as ‘just another self-help book’.  Because as much as I have a bad history with the church – I can still read the book without hearing the pastor’s echos in my head.

The question is whether or not it can be assumed that the Bible is basically on par with ‘the huisgenoot’.  That is – you don’t have to like everything, or even accept, everything you read.  If you read something that inspires you then ‘take it with you’.  Similarly if you find something that pisses you of then you simply ‘chuck it aside’.

Personally I don’t need the book to be completely infallible.  I just need it to be honest with its overall message.  Even then I don’t need it to be true in everything it says.  I just need it to be a sincere book written by sincere people with an overall inspired message.

Now I do hear all the time how people claim that the book was either ‘manipulated’ beyond the point of recognition or simply written by selfish people with a selfish agenda.

My friend – you face the burden of establishing your claim against the fact that it is widely accepted that at least 40 people wrote the Bible with the same overall consistent message against a back drop of several thousand years apart and within the foundation of at least 5000 new testament copies in the original languages.

I am deeply sorry to have to correct you :-).  Whatever you say of the book.  It has not been marred beyond recognition and if there is a conspiracy then it spanned at least two thousand years and included at least 40 people from distinct back grounds.  Of course in my opinion – if it is a conspiracy then it deserves to fool us all because it is really well done.

At the same time the world should notice carefully that there is currently an in-house debate among orthodox Christians who all profess the divine nature of Jesus and the atoning work of his sacrificial death on whether or not the Bible in its entirety is really without error.  Frankly, no matter what the Bible belt preaches, you don’t have to believe the book is completely without problems in order to come to the conclusion that Jesus rose from the dead.

So hopefully the foundation is laid.  I am not asking anybody to believe that the verses I am quoting is anything more than some inspirational pieces from an ancient text that ‘may or may not be true’.  But whether you believe it or not – you cannot deny that it sure is interesting.  If you don’t find it interesting you simply prove that you have not read it.

So this post is for Ravished for life and the usual disclaimers apply.

But there is going to be extended discussion of the social implications of some of the verses in the Bible pertaining to marriage.  If something seems intuitively true to you – please take it.  If not then reject it but have reasons for doing so.

Gen 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

I am not enough of a Greek scholar to pull the different applications of the rules of grammar apart.  All I know is what I learn from e-sword and the strong’s concordance and dictionary.  The interpretation of this verse has always interested me because the writer jumps from a seemingly singular situation in the English to a plural expression.  Now I was able to glean from e-sword that the word that is translated as ‘man’ is the same as the first name Adam.  But it is used in various places to denote ‘mankind’ or humankind if you want to be more politically correct.  What I need somebody to explain to me is whether the ‘him’ in the second part of the first sentence refer to a single male.  Surely the context would dictate otherwise?  Surely the translation may just has well have been:

“So God created humans in his own image, in the image of God created he them.  Male and female created he them.”

I appreciate that the writer thinks of the entire species of humans as a single unity made up of several individuals.  But this begs the question whether you will allow for God to be like that – a single unity made up of different individuals?

Anyway whatever we say of God and ‘his’ image.  There is one interpretation attached to this verse that nobody can squirm out of:

THE WRITER SEEMS TO THINK THAT THE IMAGE OF GOD INCLUDES FEMININE CHARACTERISTICS?!

We don’t get the impression from the text that the one sex is superior to the other.  The only possibly relevant fact is that men are mentioned before women but as any partial, part-time student will tell you “in ancient languages this does not mean much”.  All we can reasonably deduce, the way I see it, is that men and women together make up the collective group (singular) of what is called ‘mankind’ and that this group in its totality is made in the image of God.

So whatever you say about the image of God – it has to include women.  It is not enough to say that the image of God is male because God introduces himself to the world as a father.  Somewhere in that father has to be a hidden mother.

Of course this hurts a lot of people’s theology and their egos.  And that is all fine.

I am quite willing to brush them aside (I am not even going to try to build a Biblical case here for the feminine characteristics of God although I firmly believe it can be done) and wrestle with what it means to be the masculine image of God and the feminine image of God.

Enter Dr. Emmerson Eggerichs with the ground breaking book ‘love and respect’.  Of course it is all relative because the notion of love and respect has been put forth by Paul and then later reiterated by the first pope.  But at least Eggerichs translated the concept into English.  Their web site can be found here.  Beware, of course, of massive religious talk.

So with the idea of masculine and feminine spirituality in mind let’s look at the source:

Eph 5:22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.
Eph 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior.
Eph 5:24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,
Eph 5:26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,
Eph 5:27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.
Eph 5:28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
Eph 5:29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church,
Eph 5:30 because we are members of his body.
Eph 5:31 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”
Eph 5:32 This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church.
Eph 5:33 However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.

I previously wrote about what I think submission entails so none of that here.  This is about the image of God.

I have a theory about the image of God that I’d like to present:

  1. There is a masculine part of God.  That part desires to be respected.  The old testament has difficulty describing that word into English.  It uses the word fear.
  2. There is a feminine part of God.  That part desires to be worshiped.  The bible does not have a problem translating that word into English but the word worship is often misinterpreted.

Deu 6:13 It is the LORD your God you shall fear. Him you shall serve and by his name you shall swear – example of fear.

Psa 27:4 One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.

Psalm 27 is a very good example of what I consider to be worship.

So let’s consider how this plays out in the real world.

The biggest question that plagues a man all his life is – do I have what it takes to accomplish my goal / am I strong enough.

The biggest question that plagues a women all her life is – will people always long to engage me / am I beautiful

Scores of Christian books have been written on the above topics and rightly so:

Some of the best ones are the Books of John and Stacy Elridge and Angela Thomas.  Also a good read is ‘for men only’ and ‘for women only’ by Shaunti and Jeff Feldham.  The topic is widely tread in Christian ‘pop-theology’.

Very few people draw this all the way back to the image of God though.  And that’s all fine but it remains interesting to me.

So if this is true:

God has two core desires.  To be feared and two be worshiped.  These two desires translate into men and women separately as both a distinct masculine and a distinct feminine nature.  The male nature desires above all else to be ‘revered’.  For this reason most men hate going to doctors.  It is essentially a confession of weakness.  Healthy men enjoy testing their strength and offering it to the world.  The female nature desires above all else to be worshiped and adored.  For this reason most women spend extra time doing their make up.  Healthy women enjoy attention.  They freely give attention as well as receive it.

What we say at ravaged for life is that for a man to love his wife essentially translates to worshiping her at all times.  For a wife to ‘love’ her husband essentially translates to act in reverence of him at all times.

Men and women do this for each other when they desire nurturing and relational security from each other – otherwise known as love.  The beauty of a woman freely given to a man fuels the man to make the necessary sacrifice.  The sacrifice of a husband empowers the wife to gather the courage to keep on giving beauty in its various forms even when it is difficult.

The problem for husbands and wives are to keep on doing this unconditionally.

Something that we don’t think is possible on your own.

And not that we are saying that prayer does not help but frankly.

Prayer did not help us – at least not directly and in a way that we could discern.

Therefore we started ravished for life.

We think lifelong monogamous intimacy, wife fearing husband and husband laying his life down for wife, is the key to being emotionally fulfilled in this life and has implication for the emotional health of the world.

So we think it is important that people start seeing that at least part of the very nature and image of God is feminine.  Because we need to empower women to be women without doing this the ‘feminist way’.

We think tropes are necessary.

I am sorry we do.

But the kind of tropes that we have in mind flows from the very nature of God.

And we believe that it is somehow possible to forge these to natures into one being.

Gen 2:24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

And when that happens the world comes very close to seeing God.

An open letter to Dss. Ian, Peet and V and Pastor Walker

I am cleaning up house.

It is time to put this behind me.

Forgiveness has happened in as much as I can forgive.

Now it’s time to start the long process of forgetting.

I have to be honest it still hurts.

But Carla and I are still together.

None of your declerations came true.

To Mrs. Walker

There is  a light in my eyes nowadays.  I actually suspect it was always there – you were just too blind to see it but since I will never know I have to give you the benefit of the doubt otherwise I will never get over this.  But the light has been confirmed to me from sources outside of myself that bear much more wheight with me than you ever had and ever will.  But God bless you anyway.

To Dominees V

You kept quiet when you had to speek up.  I never hated you but your silence did not help me.  You just failed me – but that’s okay.  No permanent damage done.  However trust has been broken.  And yes I am being reabillitated despite your negative input.  So go in peace.  I do think your heart is in the right place.  Just be carefull man.  You may not realize it but you have authority to hurt as well as heal.

To Dominees Ian

Yes I failed.  And then what.  Because I am still here.  We are still together and we are closer now than we ever were.  No thanks to you.  All you had to do was keep your mouth shut like you promised the first time you met us.  Although I am open to the idea that Carla misunderstood you.  In my life you were a terrible pastor but an excellent pharisee.  You showed me exactly what I did wrong and then you left me there.  Your God seems to only help those who help themselves.  Frankly I don’t want that God.  You should consider a change of job.  Since you were the last straw it is going to be the most difficult to let you out of mind.  But I can sincerely say that I want to.  And again.  Nothing here that cannot be healed over time.  But it still hurts.  That is why I am writing.  So go in peace.  I actually forgive you.  Just don’t ever come close to me again.

To Dominees Peet

I think your teaching on prayer is wrong.  And I think that your standards of judgement needs some adjusting.  And you know what.  I am in the process of being reabillitated despite your and V’s ‘declaration over me.  Can you honestly say that any person on this planet is beyond grace.  Because you said that of me and here I am.  Of course not in those words.  But anyway.  It is what it is.  Keep on climbin the ladder.  I suppose there has to be people like you but damn we are very far apart.  I do hope however that one day I can sit with the likes of you and actually accomplish something.

 

This is part of me cleaning up my tainted history with the church.  I am in the process of slowly moving back to people and hope to be healed when I get close.

Naturally our pastors failed us.  And I do believe at some level this should have been okay.  But the legalism that we had adopted in our culture had to come down somehow.  Its time was up.  I just pray that we can move on without bitterness in our hearts.  Because we will probably make the same kind of mistakes or others of our own.  But God forbid because it hurts.  I really don’t want to do to others what has been done to me.  Although if I’m honest I probably have already done so.  And for that I deeply and sincerely apologize.  I know what it feels like.  There should be a middle way in all of this and I am going to forever try and make it because people’s hearts are worth it.

Also I want to speak out against the immense evil that these spiritual leaders entertain in their lives – that of pride (frankly I suspect it is all of the spiritual leaders to some degree or another) – while still pointing out that these are mere human beings.  Somehow we need to be open to the ‘presense’ of God that comes to us through people but protect our hearts from the ‘carnality’ in those very same people.

So far so good.

May we all walk forward together from now on and at least try not to crush each other’s hearts.

The good side of feminism

Recently I was confronted with a divorced woman who brought her two sick children to me.  It immediately became pretty obvious to me that the poor soul was taking a lot of slack from family and friends for reasons that are ultimately beyond me.  However what bothered me the most about our interaction was when affirmation of the fact that ‘she was not crazy’ became more important than simply ‘doing the right thing for the sake of her children’. When I spoke to Carla about it I had to force myself to admit that my reasons for being so verbal about the incident were probably still related to my being charged for improper care a number of years ago. Carla pointed out that I there may be a chance that I am just ‘angry at women’ for their emotional side. Now at times like this my skeptical nature protects me.  As long as people don’t make ‘absolute’ statements about my character I am usually fine if they stick to simply asking a provocative question.  No matter how offensive the answer to the question might be – as long as it remains a question then I am usually fine.  In fact I relish thinking about myself in that way which is probably also selfishly driven :-).

So while exploring my own hatred for women I found the assholes promoting the ‘scientific evidence for the notion that’ #feministsareugly You can laugh and say that people are just poking fun. And thus you distance yourself completely from the kind of person that I want to be.  Now to each their own but please build your kingdom far away from mine. So let me be clear – if this is the alternative to feminism then please…  let the feminists rule us all because this is …. I don’t know what to call it.  It is ‘scientifically correct’ I suppose. Which actually supports most of my negative assertions about ‘dead science’ in general. Scientific statements are neither good nor bad – they just are.  I get nervous when science gets involved in assertions of beauty.  On what scientific basis do you pronounce something to be beautiful in the first place? So I suppose that the good side of feminism is standing up to the idea that the value of a person has anything to do with their sex appeal.  Hideo Kojima for president I suppose.

Yes there are objective standards for beauty, I completely agree, in the same way that there are objective standards for strength.  The problem is that you can be strong ‘on the inside’ while still being a jerk. But the basis / objective standard for beauty is not found in science. Yes you can go off and give me mathematical examples of symmetry and relations and colour variation etc. On what scientific basis do you call that beautiful? What empirical evidence do you put forward to ‘prove’ that fat is uglier than skinny and strong chins are ‘fairer’ than small and slender ones.  I understand your interpretations about naturally selecting ones that have a ‘fitter’ appearance.  That is not beauty.  It is attraction.  Men may be attracted to skinny because of some chemical reaction that they don’t understand and they may call it naturally selecting the best possible genes.  But there is no objective basis and hence right to put this in the same category as Beethoven’s 5th.

But the feminists are not winning the argument denying reality either.  I agree however that, God help us, if we as a society have stooped to the point where the only value that a woman has is if ‘men want to buy her drinks’.  It seems to me that life cannot get worse than that.  Beauty is not simply in the eye of the beholder and while I would agree that real beauty is a combination of what is inside and outside you are going to lose if your only insistence is ‘that it does not matter’.  It matters but the men of the world may be too fucked up to appreciate you for who your are.

May favorite video game trope is the one about Mario’s princes in the castle.  We watched Doc Mcstuffins the other day and in the video the princess saves the night and everybody hails it as a victory for equality.

My humble question to the feminist is:  “if you believed that men would protect you and not abuse you!  Would you be happy for a man to risk his life for you?”.

Cause that is where the trope comes from.  And that strikes me as beautiful.

But I am challenged by the reality that there are so few men out their truly risking their lives for women – for them women only exists to make them feel better about themselves – or to be used and abused in their own disgusting effort at power – that the ladies had to convince themselves that it is not important and ‘they can do it themselves’.

And I understand that.  God knows it is probably better to ‘fight your own battles’ then to be ’emotionally raped’ every time you let your guard down.

And whatever weakness you have is paraded in front of the world and mocked.

I would fight to protect myself too.

I wish however that things could be different.

I wish that I had the strength to risk my life for all of the women in my circle of responsibility and I wish that the women in my circle had the self-assurance to keep on offering the different levels of beauty that they do possess whenever I needed.

Because we are killing each other.

But strangely because feminism is still feminine…

A part of remains beautiful to me

Yes I am sick and tired of the group who want to abuse their power over me through lust and wants to kick dirt in my face when I resist

But I do believe in equality

To me that simply means equal but different

And I need girls to be different because I need a savior that has what I don’t have

And the feminists don’t want to save me

they want to rule me

But I agree that they have to stand up for themselves because it looks like nobody else will

this is the real tragedy

anyway to each his/her own

God save the Queen and all that…