Monday, 30 August 2010

Chapter Twelve - Masculine and Feminine Cycles

We live in a sick, sad world, which needs to be healed. The first thing needed in process of healing is an acknowledgement that there is an illness. For instance with alcoholics or drug addicts attempts to cure them are a waste of time until they acknowledges they have a real problem. Then the healer needs to convince them that they have a workable method that will bring genuine healing.

So the first hurdle is the universal admission that we do actually live in a sick world. The problem is that we are taught from childhood that the world we live in is “normal”. We have all been brought up from childhood to believe war, crime, violence and hatred is customary for human beings. If we think about it a bit deeper we find that all the major religions of the world has failed to make our world a better place. Communism and Socialism with the ideal of equality also seems to have completely failed. The only thing that seems to have worked is Democracy, which it is clearly a step in the right direction. Yet even Democracy is being undermined by corrupt, two faced politicians who seem to be incapable of telling the truth.

So the message that comes to us from history and the media, is that the world of conflict, hatred and violence we live in is simply human nature and there is nothing we can do about it. The reason why we seem to be incapable of making our world a better place is because we are caught in the trap of a masculine cycle of fear and violence.

We stand on the brink of two possible futures, either a masculine or feminine destiny. These two possibilities come through two very different cycles. The masculine cycle began with the end of the Neolithic age. Somehow women lost control of a handful of men who became very violent. The male cycle probably began with men who find they can obtain power over other people through violence and aggression. Probably at first they were simply outcasts who survived by robbing people moving between towns and villages. Then in time some of these men formed groups and become bandits. They would be joined by other men who would be drawn by the attraction of power over others, through violence. In time these groups would become so large that they were able to take over towns and villages and impose on the people a protection racket. “you give us what we want and we leave you alone”. This would be in effect the first taxation. Then different bandit gangs would then start to fight each other for territory. Until one bandit leader got on top and conquered other bandit gang and he would become a king.

The bandits would exploit their power over the people and probably would steal whatever they wanted. As well as rape and kidnap women and use them as sex slaves. Understandably the people would get angry with this behaviour and perhaps rise up and against the bandits. Some of these revolutions would fail and the people would find themselves receiving even worse treatment than before. Other revolutions would succeed but the people will find that even getting rid of the bandits, will not allow them to return to their previous life of peace. If the revolution is led by men they will become as violent as the bandits and will end up behaving the same, once in power. If the revolution is led by women they will become Amazons and still have to learn warfare to defend themselves from attack from other bandits. In the end the Amazons died away probably because violence is not as natural for women as it is for men. So in the end women will be subdued by male violence.

This violence is very similar to what we observe in apes like chimpanzees and the male hamadryas baboons.

As female chimps come into season males start to become attractive to them, but many females can be choosy and only prefer certain males. Males who are not chosen by females counter the females right to choose by aggression and violence, by repetitively attacking the females he wants to mate with. Jane Goodall who has observed this behaviour claims that alpha males train the females he wants to mate with through intimidation and fear. So she will be too frighten to refuse him when he wants to mate with her.

A graphic account of this was observed by the Japanese primatologist Mariko Hiraiwa-Hasegawa. She was observing two chimp communities she called M and K group. One day she discovered the alpha male of M group called Ntologi with four of his side kicks attacking a lone female from K group and her three year old child. With the help of a companion Hiraiwa-Hasegawa attempted to beat the male chimps off by beating them with canes, but the powerful males ignored them. Then her companion threw a rock at the males and this had the effect of making them backing off. (Had the male chimps had instead attacked the two humans they wouldn’t of stood a chance against the powerful chimpanzees). The life of the female was saved although she and her child were covered in blood and badly injured. A year later the same female had another child and was again attacked by the Nitologi and his henchmen. This time her baby was eaten alive by them. After this the female defected to M group and mated with her baby’s murder. Probably because she couldn’t no longer find safety in F group for herself and her children. A post script to this, was that Ntologi himself was later murdered by his second in command, so he could take over the position of the alpha male. While Hiraiwa Hasegawa herself have given up observing chimpanzees because she was so appalled by their behaviour, that she learnt to hate them.

Male hamadryas baboons are also very aggressive. They kidnap females to become part of their harems from a young age and maintain it through continuous threats and intimidation. Usually by biting the back of the necks of his females. Which is a real threat as hamadryas baboons have large razor-sharp canines. So he is capable of killing or bad injure the female if was to bite hard. The males frighten the females so much that they will not stray too far from them, so that even a stare by the male will so frighten the females they will run back to the male. They are so under the control of the male that they will never refuse sex when they are into estrus.

The behaviour of humans in extremely patriarchal societies is very similar. It use to be that the alpha male, the king or local lord, could have as many wives he wanted. Even when Christianity come into force and man were suppose to have only one wife. Many lords still had conjugal rights to all the peasant women working on his land. In places like Sicily, Ethiopia and Eastern Europe it was commonplace up until recently that if a young man wants to marry a girl, with some of his friends he would kidnap her and then raped her. After that there would be social pressure put on the girl to marry her rapist. This was only stopped in Sicily, when one young women in the 1960s was brave enough to take her rapist to court and have him charged with rape. In doing so she had to not only resist social traditions but also the Mafia. So we can see that this behaviour is not far removed from that of the hamadryas baboon.

We can see a contrast in the behaviour of the bonobo. Milwaukee County Zoo had a group of bonobos and they attempted to train them in the same way they train chimpanzees and other animals. The bonobos reacted by becoming extremely non co-operative. They would scream loudly at the zoo keepers and urinate on them if they come into the pen. Then a female keeper took over and she adopted a system of kindness and positive reward. The behaviour of the bonobos changed and they became very co-operative and easy to work with. So it seems that bonobo females will not accept force and intimidation. Yet this is not the attitude of the male bonobos.

In zoos it was found that bonobo males were frequently assaulted by females who would gang up on a single male. To the degree of having fingers and toes bitten off and in one case a female bit off male’s penis! It seems that this is normal behaviour in the wild but the differences is that the male can run away, but in a zoo he has no form of escape. So it seems to be normal behaviour for female bonobos gang up and assault lone males to show them, who is the boss. (They also assault male zoo keepers who come into their pen).

Scientists have not been slow to compare primate behaviour with human behaviour. Where domestic violence between men and women is commonplace. In the past in the Western world it was once “normal” for a husband to beat his wife with a stick. In the Islamic world even today a man is “dishonoured” if he cannot dominate his wife by beating her up. In China as late as the 20th century was the tradition of foot binding which left women nearly crippled. Which is very similar to the behaviour of some male chimps who will not only beat up the female he wants to mate with, but cripple her as well, so she is unable to run away.

So sadomasochism is part of the primate sex war between males and females. Males dominate through violence and the female have to become masochistic to be able to stay sane in a life of brutal beatings and rape. Patriarchal societies also enforce the custom of marriage that forces a women stay with a man and breaks up any chance of women creating a powerful sisterhood. Bonobos and other female dominated primates re-enforce the sisterhood through lesbian sex. Which even today is discouraged by patriarchal custom. Female macaque and rhesus monkeys also mount males and rub themselves against them as a sign of dominance over the male. Which is again similar to human behaviour, it seems some men will go to a dominatrix to pay them to bugger them with strap on dildos. Is this a unconscious desire by these men to want women to dominate them once more?

One of the reasons why male chimpanzees and humans continue to use violence and intimidation against females and other males, is because it works. If people and female chimps adopted the attitude of, “Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death” (Patrick Henry, 1775). Then this behaviour wouldn’t be able to continue. Though admittedly his is a lot to ask of any person or creature. Yet again some women have done this. In certain parts of Pakistan and India some mothers will murder their female babies. Some feminists have seen this as a sign of extreme patriarchal brainwashing on women. But other feminists have pointed out that another reason for this could be that these mothers do not want to bring up daughters in the very brutal patriarchal world they live in.

Feminists have point out that a women to gives in to a violent husband and cares for him and has his children is betraying the next generation of women. This is because her sons will think it “normal” to beat up their girlfriends or wives while her daughters will think it “normal” to beaten up by men. Also she is allowing his violent genes to be passed on as well. This then allows this behaviour to continue generation after generation. So like the female chimpanzee or hamadryas baboon if she gives into male violence it encourages males to continue to use it. Though it has to be admitted that very few women are able to stand up to male violence on their own. It was only by Feminists setting up Women’s Refuses where women subjected to violence could go to, that allowed women to tackle male violence in recent times. This then is the advantage human females have over female chimpanzees, they are better able to communicate with each other and organise resistance to this behaviour.

In extremely patriarchal countries male dominance is enforced by male violence. Not only against women but men also fight each other for supremacy with violence as well. It seems to be the more violent a society becomes the more men dominate it. A example of this is Afghanistan. Up until the 1970s it was a country that had lived in peace for nearly a hundred years. In that time it began to become slowly Westernised, in that the women were allowed education and all the Islamic restrictions against women were slowly eroding away. Then it was invaded by the Soviet Union. Even after the Soviet Union left in the 1980s war still continued between various warlords. The result of over 20 years of war has been that women’s rights have been taken away and Afghanistan has now one of the most harshest laws and customs against women. Even the recent invasion by USA hasn’t changed the attitudes of brutalised men towards women, and is still a country mostly ruled by violent warlords.

So the masculine cycle is created by male violence. The effect of male violence is to brutalised men and increasing their testosterone levels. While women become more submissive, to counter male violence by appeasing men. Which undermines women’s confidence and self-respect.

The antidote for male violence is peace. Like with capitalism the end result of companies competing with each other is a monopoly where one company comes out on top and competition comes to a end. The end results of competition between warring warlords and states is empire. Where one leader ends up coming out on top and imposes peace, by force. This brings about a time of peace where the testosterone levels of men go down as they become less brutalised by the decreasing violence. Unfortunately peaceful countries then become open to invasion by other states who are still fighting among themselves. This is not a problem while they continue to do this but when they become united under one strong leader, this leader becomes a conqueror. Because finding he has a united army of battle harden fighters he will invade peaceful states on its border. This is what happened to China when it was invaded by the Mongols.

In 1206 Genghis Khan united the warring Mongols under one ruler. These men used to fighting among themselves found it easy to conquer other surrounding countries, who had been at peace for many years. The Mongols invaded not only China, but India and Europe as well and ended up with the largest empire known in recorded history. Then Mongols in turn became less aggressive through years of peace. This resulted in them being driven back to their homeland and finally conquered in turn by the Chinese.

It is noticeable that women began to become liberated in Europe and Northern America during the 19th and 20th century during a time of relative peace and stability, after the Napoleonic wars. It is true in this period we did have the American Civil War, the Franco-Prussian war and the First and Second wars all fought on European and North American soil. Yet between these wars we did have years of peace, with generations of people not knowing what it was like to fight in a war. While Switzerland is one of the safest countries in the world which hasn’t had a war on its soil for over a hundred years. In the USA the high rate of crime has been blamed on the freely availability of guns available. Yet in Switzerland shooting is a main national sport encouraged by all men having to do national service. In fact Switzerland has one of the most heavily armed populations in the world. Yet it also has one of the lowest crime rates.

So is it a coincide that Switzerland has also managed not to be involved in any wars for the whole of the 20th century? Also at one time Switzerland boasted that they had eliminated poverty in their country. Recently this has returned through the influx of immigrant workers doing low paid work, but it still remains low. So it means that people in Switzerland have not been brutalised by either war or poverty for a long time, which makes it possible for the male population to be armed with guns without the problem of gun crime.

This means that peace can create a feminine cycle. In times of peace men become less aggressive, their testosterone levels go down and are less likely to commit violence against women. As they are no longer being battered by men, women begin the gain confidence and self respect. This is the danger patriarchal religions understood thousands of years ago. This is why the Christian and Islamic religions made laws and customs to restrict female freedoms and encouraged men to assault women. Christian priests encourage men to dominate their wives by beating them. While in the Islamic world even today, a man is “dishonoured” if fails to beat his wife to make her obedient.

In the 19th century many wealthy women in USA campaigned against slavery. Then as they began to understand the legal position of slaves, they were shocked to find that black slaves had more legal rights than did the average women. This started the women’s movement in America. Because men were becoming less aggressive and women more confident, men have little resistance to women’s demands for equal rights over the next 150 years. What has been striking in the West is that the Feminist movement has been met with very little male violence. Unlike what happens in Islam countries where women who have been brave enough to fight for equal rights, have been murdered, arrested and assaulted.

As women become more free, so do men. A despotic dictatorship is only possible if the dictator can rely on a army of ruthless young men who will obey him and commit violence, murder and torture against anyone who opposes his rule. A leader who cannot find enough young men to commit violence against the people, then has to rule by consent and not violence. This means that the level of male violence in the general population has to decrease to make democracies and women’s liberation possible.

So men and women have two very different strategies to gain dominance over the other sex.

The Masculine method is through violence. men simply using their superior size and strength to batter women into submission. On top of this, patriarchal institutions have created laws and customs to keep women in a condition of slavery. As well as creating competitive masculine societies that favours men and not women.

The Feminine method is through co-operation. We can see this clearly with the female bonobo ape whom have created a powerful sisterhood. This has also been the battle cry of many Feminists that, THE SISTERHOOD IS POWERFUL. Unfortunately up until now, women haven’t been able to put this into practise to make a noticeable difference.

Many Feminists have criticised their own sex for not making most of the opportunities that at equal opportunities legalisation gives them. This has also been a similar problem for African Americans. People like Malcolm X have complained bitterly that most black Americans have what he called, “A slave mentality”. That is to say although slavery was abolished in 1863 nearly a 150 years later African Americans still find themselves the most poorest and deprived group in USA. Although one of the reasons for this, is discrimination by other ethic groups, like white people. The culture of Black people is not very helpful either. For instance there is a real problem of a anti-academic culture among young black men. Where in schools black men who try to study hard are ridiculed and physically attacked by other black men. It seems that for a black man to get ahead he has to be very secretive or very big, strong and violent, to resist bullying by other black young men.

Women have had the same problem. They also had a “slave mentality” but there are signs that they are now overcoming this. Up until the 1980s, young men were always ahead of young women academically. Girls would be ahead of boys up to about the age of puberty, then girls academic performances would drop away and boys would overtake girls in getting more places in college and universities. Yet in more recent times there has been a slow change where girls are now studying harder than boys at school right through to university. The result is that in school leaving exams in 2002 in Britain there is now a 9% gap in favour of girls and this gap is slowly growing every year.

It also seems that boys are now having problems. The anti academic culture of young black men is spreading to young white boys as well. Where anti-learning laddish culture is being blamed for the poor academic results of all young men.

The result of this is that some commentators are claiming that, “the future is female”. The idea is that if more women have better academic qualifications than men, they will have more of the top jobs in the future. This assumes that women will also be able to cope with the very “macho” and aggressive culture of politics and business. For this reason many women who want careers go to assertiveness classes. Which is probably what many women do need, but to go down this road too far can be self defeating for women. This can be seen in the case of the hyena. It seems that females as they develop in their mother’s womb they are bathed in male hormones resulting that when they are born the young females have clitorises as large as a male penis and are even more aggressive than males. This aggression allows female hyenas to dominate the males.

The dominance by females benefits their offspring in that Hyena cubs have a far lower starvation rate than other carnivores. So it is a big help in allowing the hyena to survive difficult times.

Some modern sportswomen have taken steroids to boost strength and the side effect has been to become very aggressive as well. So women don’t really have to go to assertiveness classes to survive in the patriarchal market place, all they have to do is take steroids. Like female hyenas they can become as aggressive and as assertive as men. The only problem with this, is that do we want to live in a world where everyone is so aggressive? The normal patriarchal society is bad enough with 50% of the population behaving like irresponsible idiots. To have a full 100% would be even worse. Yet this doesn’t have to be the only way, there is another choice.

In business there is talk about co-operation rather than competition. Business studies have shown that competition within a company can make it very inefficient. This is because if you have staff competing with each other for power and status, they are unlikely to co-operate with each other. This will result in office politics where people with attempt to undermine other members of the staff and even sabotage their efforts. So some businesses want to try to eliminate all this, and get people to co-operate rather than compete. I don’t have to tell you that, it has been found that female staffs are far better at this than men.

Another quantum leap could be made in politics as we can see through the leadership of Princess Diana. The genius of Princess Diana was that she was able to portray herself in the media as a genuine caring and loving person. Something any politician or spin-doctor would give their right arm to have. Although she didn’t have any political power, in the way she was able to use and manipulate the media made her a very powerful person. Which she used to further her own agenda, to create a more caring and loving world, where possible.

From the very beginning when she became a royal she responded to people in a very caring way. Now this is not unusual with famous people in the media, but she put it across in a way that no one doubted that it was genuine. To the degree not even her critics doubted this. So this made her from the start the most popular royal, and gave her worldwide fame. At first she was just content with this, but then she was to learn a trick from another royal, Princess Ann.

In the early 1980s there was a great famine in the Sudan, but the media ignored this famine so the people in the West were unaware of the millions of people dying of starvation in the Sahara desert region. Princess Ann as president of the Save The Children Fund visited Sudan and of course the media went with her, because they wanted a story on her failing marriage. Then reporters personally saw the great suffering going on in the area, and as the result of this visit the media all over the world began to report on the famine. This in turn got the Band-Aid movement off the ground. Resulting in millions of pounds being donated to try and save these people.

So likewise, Princess Diana began use her celebrity status to highlight causes she believed in. One of the most important acts she done was change people’s opinions on Aids epidemic. When Aids first started to spread in the West, people greatly feared it and believed that they could catch this disease by touching people with this disease. Also as it was mostly homosexual men who got Aids, this increased homophobia, and some extreme Christians were suggesting that Aids was the way God was punishing deviant acts like homosexuality. The media in Britain encouraged these stories and I can remember reading one scare story in the British newspaper, The Sun, suggesting that people could catch Aids from public toilet seats, if a homosexual man sat there previously.

At the height of the homophobia frenzy whipped up by the British press, Princess Diana fearlessly met this hysteria head on. She visited a hospital with Aids patients inside and talked to and shook hands with patients dying of Aids. Pictures of her doing his was in the newspapers and on the TV and in one stroke she had given homosexual men Royal approval and destroyed the myth that you could catch Aids by touching someone with this disease.

She was later to do the same with leprosy as in many part of the world people still believe it is possible to catch leprosy but touching a leper. She again appeared on TV touching shaking the hand of a leper and helped overcome prejudice against lepers. Charitable organisations were finding that if Princess Diana publicly gave them support of them, she was able to generate large amounts of contributions for their cause. So they became very aware of her power to help the causes she believed in.

She also started to move into politics. In the 1980s in Britain there was high unemployment as well and an increasing number of homeless people living on the streets. The right-wing press in Britain was whipping up a hate campaign against unemployed people, claiming that they were scroungers and work-shy. Princess Diana showed the world clearly where her sympathies laid by again visiting and talking to homeless people. Though by this time the media was now wise to her tactics and wasn’t so keen on reporting her doing this. So she didn’t get the media coverage in this that she normally expects. The British media also tried to start a hate campaign against Princess Diana but the newspapers that attempted to attack her found that they were unable to dent her popularity with the common people.

She was to move more into politics towards the end of her life. Charitable organisations had for years campaigned again the production and use of land mines, but had never got anywhere with this. In all conflicts all over the world countless land mines were buried indiscriminately, then after the war the land mines would be left in the ground with no one knowing were they were. So the civil population living in the area would continue to be killed and maimed by treading on these mines. Princess Diana then decided to get involved, and simply by visiting a area where land mines had been buried she focused the world’s media on this problem and got governments all over the world to take notice.

She was warned by conservative politicians not to get involved in politics. She herself was to claim before she died, that she feared she would be killed, and when it did happen the circumstances of her death was very suspicious, suggested a government cover up.

The great emotional effect of her death on people was immense, which was to surprise everyone. The reason for this is I believe is that in a uncaring world, where selfish and corrupt industrial and political leaders are commonplace. Princess Diana was one of the few people in establishment who showed that she genuinely cared and loved people. So in the very large numbers of people that mourned the death of Princess Diana gave a clear message to the politicians that the people wanted to live in a more caring world. This was picked up by the British Prime Minster who stated that people loved Diana because she genuinely cared. But he didn’t learn from this himself and his actions have since shown he is a normal selfish and uncaring politician.

Another women was the have the same effect before Princess Diana and this was Evita Peron. It would be easy to be cynical and say that she was only a the mistress and later wife of a South American dictator. But the emotion effect she was to have on Argentina, the country where she was the first lady, shows she was more than this.

Like Princess Diana the political influence she had was very limited. Yet unlike any other Argentina politician, before or since, she was able to show to the people that she genuinely cared. The people respond greatly to her and although she was unable to do a lot for the people of Argentina she came across and a person who really believed in what she said. With her early death, people showed clearly how they felt about her at her funeral, and this gave a message to the politicians that people do want to live in a caring society. Something I’m afraid the Argentina politicians ignored.

The story of Evita Peron was given publicity by the stage musical Evita written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice. The genius of this musical was it portrayed clearly the emotion effect Evita had on the people of Argentina. Unfortunately when it was also make into a film the producers and directors had little understanding of what the story was about. They put a pop star in the title role who didn’t have either the singing voice or acting ability to do justice to the music and lyrics.

To a lesser degree the same thing happened with Mary Robertson the first women President of Southern Ireland. Although the Irish Presidency has little political power Mary Robertson was able to present herself as a caring person. She became so popular that when she retired, nearly all the candidates to replace her were women. After Mary Robertson’s performance few people were interested in voting for a male.

With the rise of Feminism in the 20th century some female politicians have risen to become leaders of countries like Margaret Thatcher and Indira Gandhi. Both of these politicians have shown clearly to the world that a woman can successfully rule a country. Unfortunately both women more or less behaved like a male ruler and didn’t show the caring side of women. Though to be fair to both women, they came leaders of very patriarchal parties and had they behaved like caring women it is unlikely they would of became leaders of their parties and country.

I believe the next step for powerful women is to have a female leader of a country with the political skill of a Margaret Thatcher or Indira Gandhi. Yet also with the ability to express there caring nature in the same way Princess Diana had. So that by becoming very popular through her caring nature she is able to push forward widespread reforms to the patriarchal system.

Once we start to have compassionate and powerful women leaders of countries, very few people will want to vote for male politicians. Male political leaders have had thousands of years to demonstrate they can be compassionate and responsible leaders. Yet very few in all that time can be said to be like this. (Apart from Nelson Mandela I can’t think of any genuinely caring male politician). They had their chance and completely blew it.

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