Women, Men and Relations(hips) – or: “Men for Dessert”

drawing of two cupids, one shooting his arrow, one hugging a heart
Image freepik.com – licensed

The traditional, age old approach, not to say unwritten law, is this:

    • Woman is decorative, enticing, alluring and eventually going out of her way to please a man/men.
    • Men look at women and judge them (sometimes harshly) by their looks.
    • When somebody decides in this ‘game’, it’s the man, who takes the steps, makes the move.
    • The woman is supposed to show her utter delight with the fact that the man actually ‘deigns’ to take notice of her and perhaps even is willing to have sex or – God forbid – a relationship with her…
    • Behind it is the yet strong but older concept of women being dependent on men, for provision and – protection.

The idea that women live for themselves, depending on each other rather than men is even older, though.

This is another aspect of love and (power) relationships I have posted more than once about… a central subject in human art forms, apart perhaps from war…

Another not so pretty example is what can happen in business and has been even subject of major Hollywood feature movies such as “Disclosure”, 1994, starring Demi Moore and Michael Douglas: The power relation traditionally being the man in power and the woman almost forced to have sex with him in order to stay safe, in place – or get promoted.
It’s been reversed for this movie – and at the time caused a heated discussion as to how realistic the movie was – or if it wasn’t rather making the story too voyeuristic to be of any real value…

I am personally lucky to never actually have been subject to such treatment.
Partly due to my personal preference I believe to choose rather than be chosen…

Yet, my heart goes out to all of those women who still for one reason or another feel compelled or even forced into relations – rather than relationships – because they fear to be alone; to be without a man; and be ultimately judged by that fact by the community or their surroundings.

Finally, one point I’d like to raise too is another craze I seem to have observed in the course of a rather long life:
The idea that as a woman, indeed a human being, you would naturally be inclined to have sex on any occasion presenting itself because in modern times we’ve learned it’s natural…? The more the better…?

I’d like to point out that there is ample proof of man (and woman) being in possession of what has been called a soul 😉 – as well as a body – and that a human body is more than the sum of its parts…
I am, simply put, for that equation:
Every man and woman ‘their way’ – as long as we are talking about consenting adults.

I like too, how it was put in that fine scene from the movie “Harry and Sally”, considered to be a classic these days:

Life’s Quintessentials…

I see and read and observe a lot and I heard about such people a long time ago: The bored, disoriented or even stricken with a heavy midlife crisis… Baz Lurhmann is not only an award-winning director of striking and unusual movies. He also at some point made this speech into a ‘sprechgesang’ (recitative), summarizing a lifetime’s experience regarding the really important things in life – for a young audience; which explains the point of view. And he’s got some points here….

I see people looking around for some kind of happiness, wondering if they missed out on something while pursuing a career; in the meantime perhaps looking for passion that is supposed to fulfill that void… or falling in love all the time because that seems to promise a sort of relieve from frustration or just plain boredom…

I am lucky in many respects: I was raised to the idea that there are morals and ethics and rules in the shape of laws we need for a large(r) community to work. But that regarding my own life it’s about taking responsibility – and know yourself and true needs better day by day. One adage being: “If you are bored it’s your own fault.”

Feeling fulfilled and happy is not a constant state of mind – or a life. But being content is.

Power – ‘Where From’ and Why? – Ways Out of the Vicious Cycle

beautiful-still-life-with-water

Politics make me extremely mad sometimes, and this is my way to express my thoughts:
Men are at the bottom of power being considered a desirable asset, so it seems, more precisely: Patriarchy is. The idea of man being the “crown of creation”, the reigning principle, as it were.

It’s rather painfully obvious that in turn at the bottom of that is the emotion of empowerment, which in turn can be set in relation to sexual experience directly, alas. People sometimes even admit to that in front of cameras: below you find a particularly unusual statement to that effect, ©rbb and arte.tv.

Why? Why would it be a bad thing – feeling powerful?

Because people confuse it with self-confidence!
Self-confidence in turn can have a number of reasons, shortly summarized: it comes from being confident that we exist and behave according to the standards we were taught as children and adolescents.
That’s why people in such societies feel self-confident, when they are powerful (men) or beautiful (women).
But it’s neither power nor beauty that makes us attractive and desirable – it’s self-confidence. First and last.

If we base our self-confidence on new and more stable values than power or beauty we may find this earth turning into a finer place – every day.

Because too many people, and the majority of them men, are led to believe that being ‘successful’ makes you attractive – and being attractive leads (at least in most male fantasies) to more sexual encounters with willing women.
At the bottom the idea of simpletons that a ‘real man’ is defined by his ability to entice women.

There are rather disgusting examples, which I wouldn’t want to mention if I hadn’t to to be quite clear, such as the late Italian politician Berlusconi, the hopefully soon to be sentenced Trump in the US or the dictator of Russia, Putin.

Even the Russian politician Alexei Navalny – may he rest in peace  and his possible if not for-sure murderers be brought to justice – or the Ukrainian president Zelenskyy are no exception alas, apparently if not obviously driven by their adoration for their wives, who both are counted by modern standards among the ‘attractive desirable ones’…

I beg the pardon of all who know them better than I could using official reliable sources, should this appear blunt and unkind, in view of their achievements, too… But I also think that their connections and some actions due to their drive for political success at least deserve looking into.

On the side: No, of course, not every man on this earth is like that, thank heaven – and their smart parents. But too many of those that are in power – or want it badly – are like that, more or less.

All this seems perhaps blunt, but to me it’s to the point at issue, namely war and destruction and suffering and hunger created too often for no real reason – and there’s a lot of evidence in the documentations, reliable newspapers and scientific research in anthropology as well as history and social sciences to make this a very likely point of view.

(The video-clip is a very short extract. Please be aware that I chose it carefully for the abovementioned statement that is contained here. Otherwise you would want to watch the full documentary here.)

The Three Wise Monkeys Revisited – The Art of Focusing

Image licensed adobe.com

“See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.” The three wise monkeys are a concept, an idea, that stems from the Japanese culture. They are a proverbial idea of how to deal with bad or evil matters in human life. When you are raised on the idea that one should be truthful, that denial can be bad for you, you may be apt to wonder.

How is such an idea a good thing?

To my mind it’s two very important points to be considered here:

    • Words are powerful, they create images in our minds.
    • It’s not about denial – it’s about focus.

Images in our minds are powerful, as has been since established in scientific research too: They help us keep focus, they can drive our actions that way – and make us feel weak and insecure – or confident and strong.

One technique that also has been advocated for business negotiations and even marketing – is to ‘visualize‘:

Start using what you have learned in terms of ideas and words to actively make up the image of what you are aiming at.

Your next project, a higher level of health  – or understanding, in short, some measure of self-awareness or efficacy different from before.

That’s why the idea of the three wise monkeys can help not only focus – they help us focus on all the things that make us strong, confident and positive about reaching the goal. Which does not necessarily mean wealth or power.

The community at large will benefit from such views:

    • From the idea that you will not listen to rumours which may be even false.
    • From the idea that you will not direct your gaze onto the bad or worse matters, not focus on the bad things.
    • From the idea that you yourself will not help either creating rumours or bad ideas – or spread those images.

Words are powerful, in all ways. That’s why focusing on the good is important.

Not because one would deny problems or difficulties or the downright evil – but because they can help to make it better, again.

After a Pandemic a Plague? US-American Republicans and Their Embarrassing Leadership

Image of chess game with board and black and white pieces
Image courtesy pixabay.com – free license

To think that after all that has happened the US-American Republicans seriously consider nominating a person like the one before the current president of that country is practically embarrassing! One would laugh with wholehearted mirth if it wasn’t too serious. I am trying hard to avoid naming its name. Yes, “its”: This is a sorry excuse for a man. To make him the president the second time is like advocating Adolf Hitler as head of state. Period.

But the party and its leaders seem not to think so themselves: A person who lacks any kind of scruples, is devoid of feeling any responsibility except towards the ‘Golden Calf’ of the bible, namely worshipping money – who is responsible during his term of government for cancelling the contracts for disarmament with Russia – and that way may be indirectly responsible for the current situation in Ukraine, a person who threatened North Korea into near war, until it became clear that money rather would do the trick with a nation that already has ‘the bomb’.
A person, particularly, who actually threatens the democracy of that nation itself they are so proud of stating to be the first real one…??!!! He was close and will get closer to instate another dictatorship in the US – and he will closely collaborate with Putin in Russia – they are the best of friends as anybody knows who follows the news.

And the news are only publicly acknowledged information, there is probably more, if we look into similar situations in history.

It’s a pity to think what the Republicans in America actually stand for: But the constitution or its principles are certainly not part of it, when all is said and done. Whatever they will tell you during election campaign(s).

Let’s hope that Italy’s sad example is not one they will follow.
…But then: Such leaders are really only about being ‘the man’, right? Silly women all around, as long as they are nice to look at, lots of booze and a large enough stretch limousine ready to take those said silly ‘chicks’ in – and with… and that in front of cameras too, is really all they care about.

And such people ‘we’ should vote for? Seriously?

I hope and actually pray that murder, money and power is not the only thing Republicans go for over there. Although: Looking at history that too may be too much to hope. Because: Murdering others in the name of the power and so-called US-American overseas ‘interests’ usually doesn’t make them turn a hair.
Or will it this time?

I can only hope that some kind of reason and responsibility will prevail over there and a Democrat such as Joe Biden be president – a second running in this case.

Whatever else happens: I will ‘bother’ all of those that are in power – and in stretch limousines – using my kind of weapon: the writing quill!

1 Among a 100 People – The Iceberg Phenomenon – How to See with Your Heart

drawing of a heart and a brain connected by two lines and a knot
Image courtesy pixabay.com – Free license

If we want to understand our peers better, it is vital to be able to relate to others: The basics of human existence, the basic needs and sorrows and joys. Knowing about them in yourself makes your ‘heart’ ‘clairvoyant’: You start to see the other’s pain, their need, you understand – and you can relate to them in new ways and find new solutions to old problems.

People are like icebergs, rarely is everything visible at once. It’s a fact that we all know to be true, at least more or less: Especially in business it’s a common idea that one should be always competent, never make mistakes…, always be fit and never lack enthusiasm. Perhaps even smile, if you can, to show that you are happy.

That means many people, even if half-consciously, behave that way; because we learn early in life from our surroundings, namely parents, family, friends and later kindergarten and school, and so on.

But sometimes people start realizing at some point that there is “more to it than meets the eye”.

Human beings have fine sensors especially as children about what is accepted behaviour and what is not. Therefore starting with early childhood they adapt to what is expected. The culture and personal background therefore are decisive aspects of what makes for the personality you meet one day around your workplace. And the personality you are.

The hidden emotions and less accepted tendencies and urges and wishes and the yearning sometimes to fulfill an inner need for something else – love perhaps, passion, adventure, or just true self-confidence because sadness and fear and childlike joy have a place again – can be strong. The self-control usually is too.

If we take into account that any culture in this world has these limitations imposed on people’s behaviour and even their thoughts and ideas that are basics for that self-control preventing them from speaking up – we will start to be able to look beyond the image. Relate to the true human being behind the business personality.

Daniel Goleman in his bestselling book called it “EQ”: Emotional Intelligence, the ability to realize the emotional side to any human thought and reaction. He states it clearly that science did eventually prove what has been part of literature, music and stories for as long as mankind exists: Emotions are the basics and central. Without them we become incapable to decide – anything.

That’s how heart and brain are connected – in a nutshell.

Statistics show too that 1 among a 100 people will speak up or contact someone when they have a problem or an issue. Therefore, looking at the small numbers in this respect can be crucial.

That’s why I use this blog to post about perhaps unusual subjects – to some of my readers. In the hopes that one or the other of them finds realization and perhaps even consolation in the fact that they are not alone with those thoughts, ideas or puzzles of human existence.

Understanding our emotions and relate to others better that way, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry put this way in “The Little Prince”:

“Here is my secret. It is very simple: you only truly see with your heart.
What is essential is invisible to the eyes.”

Spreading Joy…

…Smile when they are clouds in the sky, you’ll get by, if you smile through your fear and sorrow, smile and maybe tomorrow you will see the sun come shining through, for you…

The song above has an interesting history.
I’ve found it to be true: After many years of hardship, especially during the pandemic, things are finally looking up again. But just as Charlie Chaplin – although more lucky in some ways – I’ve found as so many people around the world:
When life is sad or difficult you learn to smile to lighten the burden(s).

The song above was originally a piece without words for a film of Chaplin’s, one of his masterpieces. He was there in the beginning of the art of movie making, he improved it and became a master and an inventor with awards and special mentions all around the world. He knew, too.

Relativity and Perspective in Business – The Two World Views

London slum interior, 25th Nov. 1913, photo A. Goss (image in the public domain)

Uriah, with his long hands slowly twining over one another, made a ghastly writhe from the waist upwards, to express his concurrence in this estimation of me.

Uriah Heep is a character in Charles Dickens’ novel “David Copperfield”. I think he is one of the most disgusting persons as a character in a book you can think of. He is vile, scheming behind people’s backs – all the while pretending to be ‘humble’, submissive and grateful. In the story’s reality he is practically the opposite. He makes use of secrets to his own advantage, using blackmail to gain power over others. But in that story it takes almost a decade until his true character and his deeds are known – and redeemed.

Although in English literature many of Dickens’ novels are counted among the romances to some extent due to the highly emotional parts – they are very realistic in the depiction of living conditions in the first half of the 19th century. The extreme poverty and starvation that included dreadful living conditions in London slums are the locations Dickens’ uses for famous and most influential stories such as “Great Expectations”, “David Copperfield” or “Oliver Twist”. Dickens was a wonderful master of the language, of dramatic point and counterpoint – and the plot as such, clear, including dramatic twists and turns as well as a true feeling for the unfortunate that make his books great examples of the rising civil societies’ best values: Empathy and social security as well as justice.

I was raised on firm principles: I do not believe that business and its representatives are the ruling powers of this world. So many people writhe and grovel for the sake of a favour, even if only inwardly, of a job, their character becoming so warped and twisted that its original quality becomes invisible. It’s sad to watch when you meet them.

I was raised to the idea that trade unions had been created for a reason. That every human being as such is what is called ‘a small universe’ in some contexts. That the capital in the hands of the few will not stay there or be ‘multiplied’ if the many ‘little people’ do not work for that.

Additionally, I was raised on an explicit work ethic: And an understanding of the many connections as well as relations that make human life what it is – and that make it necessary and desirable in a reasonably sensible business to do the best in my ability to make that business thrive – and keep mine as well as others’ jobs – to an advantage.

My approach is not always clear and easy to everyone around I know. There are still parts of this world where the belief in the ultimate authority of anyone superior in a hierarchy make it crucial to be subdued, even servile, in everyday behaviour. Anyone deviating from that kind of behaviour may be subjected to suspicions of disloyalty.

For me these two views are worlds apart:

    • Be ‘a humble servant’. Or

    • be a proud, self-contained and yet reliable employee and/or colleague in an honourable trade.

 

Love, Passion, Seduction – Truth and Make-believe

Open old book in the sun and haze on a dark background
I am not out to make it any easier to any of my readers, alas, if any of them had supposed that. I am out to make it clear – and less painful for many, who really care.

Starting out into life as a young person in its teens, growing up, growing mature and even more mature over time, one thing we will realize at some point:

Love is no light game.

There are movies, books and TV series in abundance especially these so ‘progressive days’, where we seem to ‘know it all’ – which try to ‘make one believe’ differently…
The 1960s long since behind us, when it was supposed to be just the butterfly thing for all who called themselves avantgarde – modern and advanced in thinking…

So, it’s routine these days?

To this day I observe those who believe that seduction is a game: ‘He who seduces successfully wins the prize’ – the prize of the biggest and most important among his peers – the football club, the card players – or simply the pub goers.

Well, my friends, its not. It’s the prize for the biggest simpleton – among many –  given away, if anything.

Go on and use your imagination, your intellect and your heart – talk to people – and read. And you will learn. If you want to.

Of course there are those whose sole excitement in life is the thought of yet another passionate love affair.

I am for the truth, the simple and humane truth: In love it’s the heart that counts, not the brain or the long legs – or the hormones.

The Long View – Hollywood and Bollywood – The ‘Happy End’ of Fairy Tales

Fairy christmas holiday lights in a jar with christmas decoration and snow in half darkness
Love is perhaps the single most often treated subject anywhere: In arts, crafts and music, writing and the film industry, including this blog. There’s such a lot around on love, passionate and otherwise. Poems, novels, songs, concerts, ballets, stage plays, and, last but not at all least, TV and cinema movies as well as serials. They can entertain, instruct or move you, separately – or all at once. But one thing is true too:
Many of them are quite beside the facts.

I think we can safely conclude one thing: What we do not see or have is reality. And what we do see or have is reality, as well.

The longer you are around, the more you learn to understand that life is not a cookie jar. No song and dance either. That passionate love affairs that end happily for all concerned are not around every corner, no matter how frustrated you might have felt in your everyday life before…

Happiness in life comes from the small things, the ‘mundane’, the apparently undramatic.

Why is that? Because, human beings are not ‘made from clay’ (‘flesh and blood’) alone. Simply and concisely put:

We are no cars… to be assembled and put together in the workshop – or put right by replacing a part like a broken windshield wiper.

A human being is more than the sum of its parts.

That means that apart from any helping elements such as opportunity or surroundings or music or – stimulants…there’s always the emotional part, and ‘the day after’. And the others, those concerned.

I have been interested in humans and why they behave the way they do, love, hatred, fury, anger, frustration, joy, happiness and love or friendship, and all the existing research on that, in more or less depth, as well as all the arts have to say and show for it, all my life. I am no youngster anymore and I can say this, with all my heart.

Remember that you are no “gymnast of love” – but a human being, with heart, mind, soul, and body.

Again:

A human being is more than the sum of its parts.