Relationships are the toughest business on the planet, but an unlimited source of opportunities. On our own, we are caught up in our personality bunker – a small and narrow cage in which we pace up and down like panthers. Relationships provide rare opportunities to escape this jail of our own making – with our partner’s loving feedback. Unfortunately, relationship opportunities turn too often into turf wars: the battle of the sexes.
Is the Battle of the Sexes a Curse or Blessing?
Before we go into the reasons for the battle of the sexes, I’d like to challenge you with a little game: 80% of all relationship issues are based on misunderstandings. Try this: next time you guys argue, write down in one simple sentence what you really want. After you’re done put your notes on the table and compare. In case you want to know: the other 19% are conflicts of interest, which can be negotiated, and ladies and gentlemen always come to an agreement, don’t we? Unfortunately, there is still this 1% – when someone purposely wants to harm us, motivated by revenge, resentment, or fear.
Why does the battle of the sexes never end and is renewed in every generation? Aren’t we willing or is there something we don’t understand? Or is the reason that the war between the sexes is the only one ‘during which both sides sleep regularly with the enemy’? (Quentin Crisp, Manners from Heaven: A Divine Guide to Good Behavior)
Probably its all of the above: we can’t live with each other, we can’t live without each other either, and we don’t really understand why. Maybe because women live on Venus and men on Mars? Hmm … I don’t think it’s that simple. Confusion usually results from … confusion, i.e. when things are messed up and not properly distinguished. But how can Mars and Venus be messed up? Well, spiritual rumors have it that Venus and Mars had a secret relationship. 😉
All right, let’s have a closer look at the psychology of the sexes. But since common psychology has failed to pacify the genders, let’s resort to spiritual psychology. Spiritual psychology surprises us with the concept that male and female are forces, not organs. Yes, we are talking Yin and Yang, Purusha and Prakriti, fire and water, Adam and Eve, the two primordial, universal forces that find expression in and through male and female organisms – aye … we’re having a first glimpse at the mess.
Male forces are hot, dynamic, expanding, and they impregnate. Females forces are cool, forming, restricting, and receptive. In short: men are flexible and women firm – that rings a shy bell, doesn’t it? But mind that we cannot fully bank on this, since women and men bear both male and female forces as the model above shows and as Albert Einstein realized: “Men marry women with the hope they will never change. Women marry men with the hope they will change. Invariably they are both disappointed.”
Intellect and body are predominantly male. That’s obvious: men tend to be physically stronger and intellectual professions are dominated by men (more male than female geeks on this planet). Emotions and the mind or subconsciousness, on the other hand, are predominantly female. We readily agree to the first, but why is the mind womanly? Because the mind is receptive and formative, it’s our personal matrix that holds all our thoughts, feelings, desires, and memories. It also reminds of what Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra’s said in Don Quixote: “Which man can pretend to know the enigmas of a woman’s mind?”
Like the subtle, but constant pull of gravitation, male and female forces expand their influence in a relationship. Not surprisingly, women end up ruling not only her own, but also her partner’s mind and emotions … that rings a loud bell: woman like to mess with men’s heads. ;-). On the other hand, men do most of the thinking in a relationship.
On a side note: since it takes women much longer to think things through, they like to socialize in order to discuss challenges and outstanding decisions with friends. Men just need five quiet minutes on a mountain top to come to a conclusion.
The first step towards the peace of the sexes is to acknowledge that we (body aside) have both male and female characters. Next, we need to understand how these male and female forces interact. And that’s where we face our first great challenge: the intellect has been promoted for the last two millennia and our female virtues have been suppressed by patriarchic religions, philosophies, and societies. Logically, this emotional oppression has been very painful for women, while men suffered a steep decline in emotional intelligence. Men’s low EQ (Emotional Quotient) can be ridiculously low, men can be emotional babies – that rings a clear bell too, doesn’t it?
The intellectual oppression of emotions is deeply anchored in our subconscious. Unfortunately, many women are still ignorant of this intellectual womanizing. They feel mentally raped by their patriarchic environment and education, but can’t really pin point where it’s coming from. They end up blaming their partner, especially if his personality has traces of chauvinism. Soon, accusations fly, and since the poor guy has no clue what’s happening he can’t help but getting defensive – and the battle of the sexes breaks out once again.
Our cultural chauvinism is also responsible for another rampant error. I gotta drop a bomb: naturally, men are kindhearted and women are strict. I know, we think that it’s the other way around: men should be tough and women tender, but that’s not how nature works. Naturally, women are protective – about relationships, family, children, and nature. Nothing is more dangerous than a mother: try to take her child and you will experience the instant appearance of God Shiva, the destroyer of worlds. Rudyard Kipling must have made at least one experience like that, otherwise he wouldn’t have come up with this: “The female of the species is more deadly than the male.” (The Collected Poems of Rudyard Kipling). A little recommendation: never mess with a women’s heart! A woman’s hate can linger an entire life and she can be very industrious in seeking revenge. You don’t believe me? Check out the movie ‘Gone Girl’ with Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike. I know it’s just a movie, but where’s smoke there’s fire. 😉
Back to the subject: since women like to conserve and nurture, they have less issues with restrictions, because they intuitively understand the value of limitation. That’s why they became the protectors of unwritten rules. On the negative side, they tend to be control freaks.
And why are men kind? Since ancient times, men have been hunting and going about their businesses. And when they return home they have surrendered game and money to their families. Men’s benevolent side has been trained for ages. Men are more ready to help than women. That rings a bit of a secret bell: it’s kinda hard to come by a woman that can be a good buddy.
On the negative side, men are prone to bend or break rules, since they have to get things done. It’s a huge challenge to discipline men, the military literally has to ‘break’ them in order to turn them into soldiers. Logically, it’s much easier to train women. I’m sure that if women would have the same physical strength as men, armies would exclusively recruit females.
Again: these are just tendencies and of course, some women are smarter than men and there are men, who are emotionally more stable than women. Strong male forces can even cause an itch in a woman to reverse sexual roles, although her body is physiologically not equipped for that. Rings a bell too? 😉
In a way, women are better off these days. They already went through an emancipation movement, liberating and protecting their gender from intellectual, legal, and physical oppression – to some extend at least. Men haven’t emancipated from emotional abuse yet. Trust me, girls, boys are having a hard time these days. Male Homo sapiens has lived for centuries in an idealistic-intellectual bunker. Not so long ago, the bunker was blown up and men had to step out of their comfort zone. And what did they behold after their eyes got use to the splendor? A jungle of desires with all sorts of exotic cravings and fancies – small, great, sweet, bitter, undigestible, and poisonous. All too quickly, the emotional jungle closed in on them and they found themselves in a great adventure, but also in a game of emotional life or death. Men need to learn how to play with fire and open up to the risks of passion, disappointments, emotional abuses, and heartaches, while having this natural, benevolent inclination.
So, what’s the solution to the battle of the sexes? Should we leave the feeling to women and the thinking to men? Of course not, because that’s old school, which didn’t work at all. Both sexes need to evolve their male and female faculties and learn how to interact properly on each level. And this brings us to the SQ – the Sexual Quotient. Like the EQ, the SQ has also suffered in the patriarchic era, in particular when it comes to sexual intercourse between male and female mental forces.
Couples could make a start by taking advantage of each other. For example, women have a sixth and seventh sense and men would do good to rely on that; in particular, when a decision is difficult to come by. Women, on the other hand, can count on their partner’s intellectual talents and drive to push through obstacles. In short: women are good in deciding what should be done, while men know better how to make it happen. That sounds like a good start for a teamwork, doesn’t it?
On a side note: as time goes by and partners develop mental strength on all four levels, they become more independent of each other. As a result of that, infatuation and passion wither. Scary? Not really. Don’t fear that stage of your relationship, because it gives rise to trust and unconditional love based on understanding and acceptance; in particular, the acceptance of your partner’s flaws and weaknesses.
Would you like to know how a perfect relationship looks like? No problem, here it is:
Like all other Tarot cards, The Lovers illustrate a state of mind, in this case that of a harmonious and balanced personality. The woman symbolizes subconsciousness, the man (intellectual) self-consciousness, and the angel our true self. The fact that they are nude, means that they don’t hide anything from each other. All emotions and ideas are out in the open and negotiable. Mind that the woman looks at the angel, the true self. This is very important: woman have a natural link to higher guidance (that’s the seventh sense mentioned earlier). The man in the picture knows that and likes to stare at the women, keenly observing all omens, signs, and writings on the mind’s wall.
The tree behind the woman is the Tree of Discernment of Function and Dysfunction (commonly translated as the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil). The five apples are the five senses. They are indeed the root of temptations, but also the source of knowledge and understanding. The tree behind the man is the Tree of Life. It’s made of fire, because the life-power that glows inside our souls is fiery, radiant, and expansive – correct: it’s male!
Esh (ASh), the Hebrew for fire, introduces us to the deeper mysteries of the creation, formation, and making of mankind. Esh is the root of Aisha and Aish. Aisha (AShH) means assistant or wife. She was the one who was formed from Adam’s rib (yes, it wasn’t Eve!). Aish (AYSh) means man and with that we have arrived at the startling fact that there was a threesome in the Genesis: Adam (the angel in Tarot card 6), Aisha, and Aish. The threesome is revealed in Genesis 2.23: And the human (Adam) said: “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh. Aisha shall be called woman, because she was taken from a man (Aish).”
And this brings us to the term Son of Woman, BN-AShH, which is sometimes translated as Son of Fire. We, Homo sapiens, are the sons of fire, and that includes male and female people. Interstingly, ben-aisha belongs to the Gematria of 358, which sums up the entire Eden mystery:
- NChSh: serpent of temptation or copper (the latter is the metal sacred to Venus)
- MShYH: the Anointed or the Redeemed
- YMShCh: He shall anoint (a reference to the Redeemer)
- YBA ShYLH: Peace shall come! (the result of redemption)
- ShKYNH: Shekinah (the divine presence in the physical universe and body)
- MChVDSh: Renewing (the Renewing Intelligence)
- MLA RVCh ChKMH: Filled with the spirit of wisdom
Are you startled by the fact that the Messiah and Serpent belong to the same Gematria? The same force that tempts us into incarnation, is also the force of evolution and redemption. The life-power animated Adam and tempted him to gain knowledge of how to be creative (to eat the fruit of discernment of function and dysfunction). And the same life-power worked its miracles through Jesus Christ.
Almost all spiritual traditions picture the life-force in the human body as a snake (Kundalini). Naturally it expresses through sexuality and regeneration. This also reminds of Freud who claimed that the sexual drive tempts us to cling to physical incarnation. The architecture of our personality adheres to a strict hierarchy: the ego (self-consciousness) controls the mind (subconsciousness), and the mind controls the life-power, which moves and maintains the body. This hierarchy is illustrated in Tarot card 8:
The garden on the head of the woman is the garden of the Magician in Tarot card 1, who, besides other things, signifies self-consciousness. The red lion is the same thing as the serpent – Kundalini. Mind that the woman opens the lions mouth, meaning she makes the lion speak, so that we understand and learn how the life-power in our body works. The roses and leaves that join the woman and the lion are formed like and eight, which signifies rhythmic and harmonious, reciprocal movement. And yes, the roses remind of Tarot Card 6, The Lovers. You’d do well to remember this, since Tarot Card 8 illustrates the Secret of All Spiritual Activities.
On a side note: I came across the most concise practical advice of using these three mental powers while practicing Tai Chi: Chi (lion) flows to the bodily area we focus on and focus (the woman) follows intention (the Magician).
Before we come to a close, we gotta address the elephant in the room. Yes, what about love? In order to understand love, we gotta return to Tarot card 6, The Lovers. It clearly shows that we need more than a man and a woman in order to love: we also need the angel (Adam, Christ, or God Child).
Love isn’t an emotional affair, it’s a matter of the heart (that’s why the heart is androgynous in the above model). Quite often, emotions are mistaken for love, like infatuation, being in love, passion, even lust. How to tell the difference? Easy: emotions are desirous, they always want something and give rise to anger and jealousy when they don’t get what they want. Love, on the other hand, doesn’t desire anything, not even to be loved in return. It wants to shine like the sun in the sky that doesn’t give a damn what we do with the life and energy it bestows on us.
This distinction is also inspiring: emotions are forces, but love is a power. Power rules over forces, so, once we love, our emotions are harmonized and put right. Love doesn’t get much better than the love of parents for their children.
When we speak from our heart, we speak as a human and return to being Adam, the angel. That’s why we don’t feel manly or womanly when we say: “I love you!” – have you ever noticed?
Picture Attribution: comfreak @ pixabay.com