Sunday, December 23, 2007

Terroristic Monogamy.

Monogamy in a way represents our capitulation to a terrorist's demands. Allow me to explain.

Monogamy is at its core a submission to feelings of jealousy. A way to structure our lives in such a way that we tolerate and even encourage the indulgence of this rather harmful emotion, in a way we indulge no other negative emotion.

There is an excellent article on DrSpock.com for understanding and dealing with sibling (and general) jealousy. Which I think can be helpful in understanding what i mean. (http://www.drspock.com/article/0,1510,3962,00.html)

As I was reading it I realized that from the first paragraph, everything in it could be seen as a pertinent to polygamy.

From the beginning it treats jealousy as not something which should be placated but something which should be understood, utilized, and overcome. Which is the exact same attitude I suggest we adopt with regard to monogamy and polygamy in the united sates and everywhere else.

Nowhere in this article will you see it suggest that since (sibling) jealousy is natural the only real workable solution is to not have more than one child. Which is precisely the solution one would be forced to arrive at if using the same logic applied to lovers.

To me both are reprehensible. You cannot tell me how many children I can have for the exact same reasons you cannot tell me who to love and when. If I love two women or more, so be it! I will not choose between them if they love me in return any more than I would choose a favorite child. Further, I would not ask a person who loved me to choose between me or another if I loved them.

It is quite ironic that very early on the article uses a polygamous situation as a metaphor for how a child feels when a new baby arrives because the article itself presents many valid points which could easily carry over into both a critique of, and solution set for, problems stemming from polygamy.

Some examples…

“There really is no reason for an older child to love the new baby at first. In time, the relationship may grow very close and loving, but at the start the new baby is at best a novelty, at worst, an interloper and enemy.”

This is exactly the type of emotions one can expect as a couple makes the jump from monogamous (in practice) to polygamous.

“Rivalrous feelings are often more intense in a firstborn child, because he has been used to the spotlight and has had no competition.”

…and again.

“Generally speaking, jealousy of the baby is strongest in the child under five years, because he is much more dependent on his parents and has fewer interests outside the family circle. The child of six or more is drawing away a little from his parents and building a position for himself among his friends and teachers. Being pushed out of the limelight at home doesn't hurt so much.”

This illustrates one of the real motivations for monogamy, attention greed and control. And again it offers a solution to what will be a common problem.

And finally we have the real gold of the article, a breakdown of why dealing with these emotions rationally is super useful. Hell, this is a rather convincing argument for encouraging both multiple children and multiple mates.

“Though jealousy can't be completely prevented, you can do a great deal to minimize it or even to convert it into positive feelings. If your child comes to realize that there is no reason to be so fearful of a rival, it strengthens his character so that he will be better able to cope with rivalry situations later in life, at work, and at home.”

“Parents can help a child to actually transform resentful feelings into cooperativeness and genuine altruism. The stresses and strains of coping with a new sibling can be transformed into new skills in conflict resolution, cooperation, and sharing.”

“These are lessons that are hard won. Learning to cope with the challenges of not being the only show in town may be the lesson that is most valuable of all to later success.”

Thank you very much Sitarih (http://sitarih.stumbleupon.com/) for sending me this article!

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I'm a politically and culturally subversive author with obsessive tendencies and a lot of free time. I feel a sense of personal responsibility for the fate of my species. My writing is the result.

My primary blog is at http://underlore.com but this G+ profile is a far more active representation of my viewpoint.

Generally I feel the answer to society's ills are technological in nature not political or cultural.

Having said that, I do have political positions of course and I strongly feel that we need to embrace nuclear power and deploy a universal basic income.