It is well-known–at least among the blogs and commenters I read–that men and women want different things from the other. For example: Women tend to prioritize a man’s material resources, while men tend to prioritize a woman’s beauty. A man won’t care much about a woman’s resources, and women are less concerned with a man’s physique than the clothes and baubles upon it.
So far so good.
In line with this, these blogs and commenters recognize that one of the mistakes a man makes is thinking a women will like the same things men do, and thus will respond positively to the same behavior that he would prefer to receive. Men like respect, so the errant man breaks out the deference routine. He sits through the stupid rom-com; buys what she likes; lets her choose the restaurant; etc.
Still so far so good.
Further we go, and some of the same blogs and commenters will say that women make the same mistake. That–because women like authority and power–their headstrong and challenging behavior is a tactical blunder of the sort made by the man who unholsters deference to shoot himself in the foot.
This is wrong. Men and women are even more different than that. Women are headstrong and challenging because they want what they want and they don’t give a damn about the whys and whatfors. In the female soul desire is mainlined. They want differently than we men do. The typical desire of a typical man is weighed thus: “Can I get the goods without getting in trouble?” A woman says to herself, “How do I get the goods without getting in trouble?” While the difference in words is subtle to the ear; the meanings are widely separated. The thought of doing without is a secondary consideration at best. That’s just in the nature of a woman, and why they need a leader.
Now, try and imagine successive generations of women; each raised on more and more skewed diet of unmerited praise and affirmation, but without hearing “No” and without consequences. If you can’t imagine it, then go to the mall, or the office, or the DMV and open your bloody eyes.
So A power-play by a woman is not a misguided come-on. It’s a power-play. There could be a come-on mixed in, but the attempt at control is for its own sake; simply because she is driven to strive to be in control. The come-on (if there) is for him, but the power-play is for power.
Women who don’t want to be in control are a figment of the imagination. It’s their sin nature. The marriageable ones are those women who struggle against it. The honorable women are those who redirect their desires, and only ask themselves “How do I get The Good?”
I am reminded of a certain famous head-shrinks quip that “sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.”
Well, sometimes a power grab is just a power grab.
Very true. The whole power grab as fitness test thing has always confused me. Like all people, women want what they want. excellent post.
I disagree slightly with the assertion that women don’t care about a man’s physicality, but other than that you’re spot on correct.
Well said. To quote myself,
“women are less concerned with a man’s physique than the clothes and baubles upon it.” ~ Cane
Which is why a set of dress blues and a chest full of medals works wonders for a man.
“Genesis 3:16” ~ chokingonredpills
Exactly! It’s a consequence of Original Sin and the Woman’s Curse that followed.
@ Oscar, chokingonredpills
Be very careful because this is incorrect.
I would argue that hypergamy existed before the fall, and I would also argue that headship of the husband over the wife existed before the fall. Likewise, temptation existed before the fall as well or else how could Eve have been persuaded to be deceived lest she be tempted first.
The fact that Eve was able to be tempted and deceived by this specific phrasing:
It is clear that before the fall that the woman already had the capacity to be tempted to literally “become like God” which means that this is a part of her nature before the fall. It is not a consequence of sin but rather the way which woman was created.
Remember, it is the capacity to be tempted that gives us free will. Both men and women were created this way in order that we might choose God of our own free will rather than sin.
Gen 3:16 gives the husband authority to rule — headship is different from authority — and then the New Covenant through Jesus takes back the authority and changes it to headship (Eph 5, 1 Cor 11, etc.).
@ Deep Strength
I agree that both the man and woman possessed the capability to be tempted before the fall, otherwise they would not have been tempted. However, before the fall they did not possess a sinful nature. It is part of a woman’s sinful nature to desire to control her husband.
I disagree that headship does not include authority.
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I don’t agree. The power grabbing nature in woman is already there as can be seen by verses 5-6. This is what is being tempted. God, in the curse, notes that women will want to directly control her husband because of the authority that was given to him in the curse.
If you look at the Hebrew word it means dominion:
H4910 — משׁל — mâshal — maw-shal’
A primitive root; to rule: – (have, make to have) dominion, governor, X indeed, reign, (bear, cause to, have) rule (-ing, -r), have power.
This is different from headship which is explained in the next section. Christ came and re-established headship model for husbands and wives (1 Cor 11, Eph 5) whereas in Mosaic law the husband had complete authority over the wife.
You may want to read this then:
Authority is different from headship in that headship does not have the ability to punish those who disobey it directly. There are also two kinds of authority. One authority can compel obedience, and one cannot.
Parents are able to compel obedience from their children. They have the authority to do so as it says in Scriptures.
Governments have authority — from God — and can put in jail for breaking the law. They cannot compel obedience though: citizens can resist submission to the government at their own risk. Although the punishment may become so great that they choose to comply, the government cannot force them to comply directly.
A husband whose wife has credit card spending issues cannot punish his wife directly in terms of say a time out or grounding her. However, since he is the head of the household and is tasked with monetary responsibility, he can cut her off the money. This would be an “indirect” punishment although it is just good stewardship of the household in general.
This is the difference between authority that can compel obedience, authority that can directly punish but not compel obedience, and headship which only indirectly punish through proper stewardship.
Also, I elaborated more my first post here:
Women are headstrong and challenging because they want what they want and they don’t give a damn about the whys and whatfors.
This has been my experience as far back as I can remember.
Cane, I’d be interested in your analysis of this essay taking a different view of Gen. 3:16 — that it “means an idolatrous longing for something from the man that she was created to receive from God alone.” http://www.theologyforwomen.org/search?q=genesis+3%3A16.
Actually, here is a response essay that I find persuasive, defending the view that Gen. 3:16 does mean that a wife will, as part of the Fall and the curse, seek to control her husband:
I’m not Cane but those two passages highlight the duality of rebellion-attraction to the husband:
I believe that the idolatrous interpretation can be correct. It would be a good interpretation of the text. But Scripture is living such that an interpretation like this does not mutually exclude other interpretations. There are many, many, many, many lessons that come out from Jesus’ parables.
As in that link that you posted, you have to do serious mental gymnastics in order to attempt to do away with headship and espouse “equality.” For example, the author gets rid of the “desire” portion not being rebellion…. but he does not address the fact that the husband has dominion over the wife in the curse. Likewise, he does not address the fact that the NT Scriptures consistently affirm headship-submission.
In conclusion, the interpretation has merit. But it doesn’t even address the “rule” of the husband” or headship-submission in the NT.
“Breaking the bonds” of the curse spiritually does not invalidate the curse’s effect in the physical world. Men still have to plow the fields, the serpent still craws on its belly, women still have pain in childbirthing, all men still die. Additionally, the NT Scriptures are written after the curse has been broken, and they affirm the headship-submission model which models Christ-Church.
The fact that “egalitarians” would deny that marriage is like the Christ-Church is quite astounding to me.
When you state that “Authority is different from headship”, you’re stating that authority and headship are two different things, and therefore headship does not include authority.
Then you state that “One authority can compel obedience, and one cannot”, and imply that headship carries the second kind of authority by giving the example of a man that puts his spend-happy wife on a budget.
So, which is it? Does headship carry authority or not?
I’m not playing semantic games, I’m sincerely confused about your writing.
There is some overlap, but they’re different structures because of the subtle differences in how they operate on a fundamental level.
Authority (exousia) — Obedience (Kupakouo/Peitharcheo)
Example — Parents-Children
1. Disobedience is a sin
2. Disobedience can be directly punished (e.g. spankings)
3. Obedience can be compelled (e.g. go to your room, you’re grounded)
Authority (exousia) — submission (hupotasso)
Example — Gov’t-Christians
1. Disobedience is a sin.
2. Disobedience can be directly punished (e.g. speeding ticket)
3. Obedience cannot be compelled (e.g. you don’t have to pay the speeding ticket… but they’re probably keep escalating the punishments until you comply)
Headship (kephale) — submission (hupotasso)
Example — God-Jesus, Jesus-Church, husbands-wives
1. Disobedience is a sin.
2. Disobedience cannot be directly punished (e.g. cannot spank a wife, or give her a speeding ticket)
3. Obedience cannot be compelled.
Note the slight differences in wording. 1 is the same for all of them, but 2 and 3 change from authority/obedience to authority/submission to headship/submission.
“Headship does not carry authority” = headship does not carry the authority to directly punish disobedience.
A man that puts his spend-happy wife on a budget is an indirect form of punishment as the task of the husband’s headship/stewardship of family finances supercedes the wife’s spending habits. This is also why it is tough luck for a wife who marries a husband with poor spending habits.
Obviously, it may feel both to the husband and to the wife as a direct form of punishment give that it was implemented in response to her actions but it is not.
I would say there is a paradox here. The woman absolutely does want the power she is striving for, but she also wants a husband she can (easily) respect and submit to. The concept of a fitness test is accurate from a narrow perspective, helping men understand why caving in vs standing up tends to have the opposite results of what they would otherwise expect. But the simplification can be taken too far, and I think this is Cane’s point (although I might be missing a deeper aspect).
This is related I think to Empath’s frustration when I and others assert that women “crave” leadership.
The woman absolutely does want the power she is striving for, but she also wants a husband she can (easily) respect and submit to.
Exactly. She wants the unattainable. It’s the same for drug addicts and progressives.
I would say there is a paradox here. The woman absolutely does want the power she is striving for, but she also wants a husband she can (easily) respect and submit to
This. More people in these parts have to be accepting of paradox. Many here have had a drink to many and done it _despite_ knowing they didn’t want to feel bad latter. They are conflicting drives where we take the stupid immediate gratification. The Game side of the ‘sphere tends to oversimplify paradox and people a bit much
Cane also rightly makes a point here as to quantity and quality. Women want to rebel in a quantity just as enthusiastic as men. They want their stuff. The “quality” or the method of that rebellion will differ though. Mainly due to their place in the Celestial Hierarchy (Lewis was right the Tao is deep and Chinese Polytheism says some dang interesting things). We tend to rebel directly against God because he’s next step up for us. Women against us because we are next step up and useful proxies.
@Elspeth, Dalrock, et al
I think food is a parallel. We need good food, and good food satisfies us. Good food empowers us to good works and a healthy, enjoyable life.
But it’s rare for someone to fantasize about broccoli. Some people fantasize about meat, but not as much as cake, cookies, chips, etc. If they fantasize of meat, then less fish than beef. Then people mistake fantasy for the ideal. They make desire their rule and standard instead of seeing clearly what they need.
I’m way behind on my writing (owing several emails and posts that I am procrastinating), but I will look into it.
But it’s rare for someone to fantasize about broccoli.
Ha! I was just having a conversation along these lines with my 8-year-old as she was trying to tell me that “I like lettuce!”. But she never asks for it, I explained to her.
That is a very good parallel. And it clarifies a lot.
You are correct. If there is some craving for leadership buried down in there somewhere it is but a pixel on a mega-monitor of control issues. If the craving of leadership, as literally stated, ….women crave leadership…has a wit to do with it then there would be some sign, some outward manifestation of it at least often enough to see it, to grab it and help her help herself. But when the fullness of the behavior screams sin-nature-control, I just can’t see women craving leadership as anything but a male rationalization of female controlling behavior. It makes men feel better to see her that way than as a shrew. all the while forgetting there is a third way to see her…..sinner.
I think it’s put best like this:
Women crave leadership in the sense that they want it when they don’t know what to do or don’t care. It’s that security/comfort blanket in the background,
But heaven forbid when she wants something and won’t take no for an answer.
Ones who will submit to leadership will grow to trust their husbands and will feel naked without it after a while. But this has to be ingrained into habit which takes a very long time to do, and I’m sure that most men today don’t have the capacity to stand up to her permanently in order to establish as such.
You are correct. If there is some craving for leadership buried down in there somewhere it is but a pixel on a mega-monitor of control issues. If the craving of leadership, as literally stated, ….women crave leadership…has a wit to do with it then there would be some sign, some outward manifestation of it at least often enough to see it, to grab it and help her help herself.
There is, but it exists in the same realm as our quest for God. When you “do right” by God how do you feel? How do you feel when you do not? How often do you not?
For me it is: very good, very bad, very often.
Per God we occupy the rung God does for women as His proxies (that is not on our own merit which is why contra some our authority disappears when it runs counter to God). We should expect to see the same sort of behavior then from women targeted at us.
I frequently ask women to get me things and they positively beam most of he time even where they talk back. Male friends have noticed me do this and been flabbergasted. I should also note that I am nowhere near an “alpha”. I’m garden variety beta with high beta on good days. My wife largely listens but she bucks frequently on petty excuses. Just last night she undermined my authority on a massively trivial issue. And I expect she’ll do something like that again before the week is over. On the whole though she comes to me to approve ideas and is happy to serve me. And I know she tries.
I have to accept that trying because I’m God’s proxy and I certainly hope the favor will be returned.
There is, but it exists in the same realm as our quest for God.
There you have it. We “do the things we do not want to do”. The flesh is weak. We may have, as is most often stated, a God shaped hole, or pick your metaphor, but we crave sin. Its two different things. They coexist, they wrestle with and for us.
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