Friday, 6 April 2012

The Same Old Accusations.

One of the reasons I have been away for so long is because I find myself having to battle fundamental accusations, and it distracts me from the project. The project has always been to heal the wounds of abusive masculinity, and to find some way of going forward – a way that does not deny the distinctiveness or necessity of masculinity, but which embraces it in the healthiest way possible.

I still find people, however, questioning my motives, accusing me of simply vocalising my own neurosis. “Why make your own experiences a social problem?” This is what they say. “That might be true for you, but it isn't true for me.”

I lose faith completely. They are wrong, simply because they misinterpret my motives, and I think often these same people are not facing the facts about their own experiences of masculinity. The truth is that we must pick up the gauntlet of Feminism. That gauntlet is, that male dominated societies are abusive and have created deeply violent cultures, where rape and war are the norm. Our environment is enslaved to an exploitative economy. Women have little or no place in politics, and if they do, they must sacrifice their femininity for their careers. The result is a culture that values force, direct power over anything else. It is a culture that lacks nuance, lacks a balanced intelligence and which reduces everything to struggle and fight.

Those who deny the importance of what I write here, though many of them are pleased with themselves for their insightfulness, are really denying the challenges of Feminism.

Society is in crisis. I believe this is the case because it has been for too long dominated by a male ideology of power.

Where I get off, however, is that I don't see this ideology as essentially male. On the contrary, I see it is a bastardisation of the male. Men, like women, are naturally made up of both masculine and feminine traits. Somewhere along the line however, and I personally think it began with the evolution of agriculture, men developed a suspicion of the feminine. Not only did they come to repress women, but they repressed the feminine in themselves.

The latter is the most significant point. Men cheapened and subordinated women, because they came to believe that they must do the same for the femininity in themselves. Men depended on their brawn, their material strength, not just for war, but for the daily work of supporting their tribes and their families.

The imbalance here, lead to pathologies, a fetishising of the masculine body and a kind of annexing of femininity. The primacy of masculinity really rose out of a perceived uselessness of the feminine. As cultures became more and more dependent on the masculine body, the feminine decreased in importance, until it became an object of trifle only.

It was, and is, a false dualism. We are all, or at least the majority of us, born men or women. But the truth is our internal experiences are far more complex, even at the level of gender. This reality, however, is not valued by society.

Now, we are the product of imperialism. Imperialistic thinking is itself the product of pathological masculinity. Nature is fierce. Death is a force, a power that threatens to sweep through our lives at any opportunity and we must beat it back, conquer the frontier as it were. In my view, imperialism is really just a tragic metaphor for the human condition, played out across history. We use masculine values, or more accurately, imbalanced masculine values, to contend with death, not just as a reality, but as a force to be reckoned with.

Male domination arises out of humanity's inability to confront a primal terror. Material obsessions, attachment to physical strength and the outright pursuit of power become values in themselves.

This is the basis of our society. And it is a society that is destroying itself. It is an ecology in flames, and a failure to recognise the reality of that is itself a product of male-dominated self-denial.

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