Culture is a very powerful thing no matter where you live. I mentioned that last time I wrote when I spoke of India’s Daughter.
It’s very hard to speak about the dangerous aspects of culture, because ‘this is how it is’ type of statements are used to shut down the conversation.
What they refuse to do is acknowledge that YES you can change aspects that harm your society, but it reminds me of the saying ‘you can’t fight city hall’ at times. Their insecurity wipes out all common sense.
In India proving your womanhood is accepting your second class status, and revering the authority of men. They are much more upfront about this second class status, whereas here in the states places like CBMW tend to use women mouth pieces like Mary Kassian to get a blunt as they are.
Both places tend to enrich insecurity in men by asking them to prove their manhood. They need to learn to display it, prove it to the world around them. That is the only way they keep their ‘authority’.
Greg Hahn started to blog recently, and he spoke of some statements that John Piper had made. I encourage you to read his post – its very good!
When you listen to what John Piper is saying about how people can’t explain to a little boy what biblical manhood is – or little girl about her role as far as that goes….it seems to come down to authority. That is the only difference. If Egalitarians can’t tell a little boy about his manhood in terms of his authority…they can’t tell that little boy how to be a man….biblically.
“Most American men know perfectly well the qualities they must display to be considered fully creditable as men: power, competitiveness, and toughness.”
That’s the prize, right there. You have to be “considered fully creditable as a man”. And the unspoken understanding of many is that you don’t just get that from having X and Y chromosomes and reaching adulthood. You have to earn your manhood, so as to be seen manly by those around you. If you can feel it, all the better, but in the very least you need to be seen that way.
I quoted part of Greg Hahn’s article, because he makes a great point here to me.
To me culture within certain faith communities, and YES that includes complementarianism are individuals having to prove our ‘gender hood’ constantly. They play into fears – of secular culture – in order to raise your insecurity. Most of the time they love exaggerating these fears about culture as well. That way you drive even harder to disprove the misconception.
Men are always told how to show their ‘manhood’, and women in this circle are shown how they can prove they are not a FEMINIST!
If you have read enough of the complementarian model you know authority within manhood is very important. Yes, they claim this authority is based in Christ-like servanthood. Yet, if you listen to the messages this servanthood is based in the ‘this is how it is’ model.
It’s similar to India’s viewpoint towards their females: She should not be put on the streets just like food. The ‘lady’, on the other hand, you can say the ‘girl’ or ‘woman’, are more precious than a gem, than a diamond. Its up to you how you want to keep that diamond in your hand. If you put that diamond on the street, certainly the dogs will carry it out. You can’t stop it” - Attorney for Rapists
The man is constantly proving his manhood, and if the woman steps out of ‘this is how it is’ mode? It’s ultimately the man’s fault for not treating his gem or diamond as he should. He placed her out of the street, and let the dogs carry her out. The women should know their place in the home – where they are safe from the dogs.
In India, if you are out after the time some man feels you shouldn’t be? If they think you are with a man that is NOT a family member? They teach you a lesson by rape.
They seem to feel they are taking their authority, but there is no true authority there. Its just cockeyed.
This is what happens when you don’t follow my authority.
It’s not really manhood they are speaking about, but authority if you want to get down to it.
You also notice it’s a never ending race to earn your manhood, and yet you are told you are ‘wired’ that way.
It really makes no sense does it?
If your woman doesn’t show the ‘this is how it is’ model of biblical womanhood it reflects badly on your manhood or authority. This lack of authority within his household helps feed the insecurity, and the threat of him having a feminist within his home? You need to MAN UP! (I hate that term!) This normally leads to cruel things happening in order to teach her a lesson.
The insecurity over his threat to his manhood is the justification. Its similar to India’s justification of rape we read about above. This is what happens when you don’t follow my authority. Heck, they will take it a step further – for dramatic purposes – stating she emasculated him.
When people are taught that is how you treat a gem or a diamond? It reflects the sense of worth they truly have towards the other gender, but you are told you don’t get it if you point this out.
It seems to me that they breed insecurity in men, and when you have an insecure person – be it man or women – they tend to lash out.
Insecurity leads to contempt
Insecure people also tend to use stereotypes, and project irrational fears that they want to come across as normal. Owen Strachman shows this when he speaks about Baby Bear, and how he think boys playing with dolls is foolish. He wants to speak about, ‘God-encoded truth about sexuality and gender’! Yet, we are talking about a preschool kid playing ‘Daddy’.
Yes, it’s a great example of ‘this is how it is’! Yet, its not in reality. As Greg said, “You have to earn your manhood, so as to be seen manly by those around you. If you can feel it, all the better, but in the very least you need to be seen that way.’'
His father feels shame, because there maybe something in his son that isn’t ‘manhood’ enough. So, they encourage him to tell his son only girls play with dolls. You don’t want to be a ‘girl’ do you?
His son’s innocent playtime wanting to be a ‘Daddy’ now turns into a show of how the father isn’t teaching his son properly, and Dad’s (manhood) authority is threatened. You don’t earn your manhood stripes by allowing your son to play with DOLLS!
Why people can’t see that is a major brain fart in the realm of common sense is beyond me! I also don’t understand why they can’t see their reaction as dishonoring women. I mean that is authority gone haywire! They also – like India – turn women or femininity into the realm of ‘them’.
Then you are reduced to ‘them’ contempt isn’t far behind. Contempt is also a byproduct of insecurity.
Culture is hard to change. Society is learning to accept, love, and grow in diversity..and moving away proving your gender.
Let’s pray that ‘this is how it is’ goes away, and we finally learn to live with the here and now. Yes, lets turn this around to: That is how it was. No fake show of authority needed, and no pressure to earn your manhood that comes from those fake needs.
Learning to love and respect humanity just as Jesus did.