Epiphany Time!
So, I was talking on the phone to variety of folks last night, and have been talking about this throughout the week, and something interesting occurred to me recently.
I have a few friends who are women who are really easy to treat like human beings, like the 'other' that they are, and see them a little closer to who they actually are. Mostly that is easier with people I have known a long time, like Biss, or people who wear black, like Sister Angelina, or people who wear wedding rings.

I guess this is confession of the process of maturing, so forgive me.

Some women, especially some of the women I dated during university, I immediately saw in the context of what they could be in relationship to me, not who they were in relationship to God. First, they were someone with potential to do/be something with and for me. This, I am beginning to see, is an incorrect way to view people, I think it is objectification in fact.
I got halfway to this conclusion while talking to Biss, and the rest took a few other conversations to piece it together. A close friend of mine corroborated (sp?) this objectification as normal for guys. we want to get married, so we look around, keep out eyes open and see what's what.

It seems to me that in order to be able to know someone in a way that builds solidly on seeing a person for who they are before God, giving a healthy ground for which to plant any kind of relational seed, we ought to do just that. see them as a child of God first, and maybe only that. If that happens, there will be fertile ground with which to pursue anything that may come up in the future, but it should also allow us as single men and women to relate to each other in a safe way that gives context to know each other to the extent that we won't need to wonder about everyone we meet. we will know, person A is like this, and it would be confusing and strange to be in a romantic/marriage relationship. OR person A is like this, and it might be good to be married, because of this and that, and because we already have a foundational understanding of who we are before God. This frees us to be ourselves, and not become something before a human.

So, forgive me sisters, for acting this way, and forgive me brothers, for setting a bad example.


Marco said...

Well buddy, we live and learn, don't we.

My problem has actually been the opposite one: out of fear of objectifying women I have come to resent masculinity itself, since I have always assumed that this behavior is intrinsic to it.

I'm told that it isn't, but I still haven't been told WHAT masculinity really is, or what (besides procreation) it's good for. I just know that, had I been given the choice, I would have chosen asexuality. It would make everything so much simpler. But we all know that making life simple is about LAST on God's priority list.

Paul said...

You know, though...

All this would be a whole lot simpler if our parents just married us off to the richest noble's daughter they could get to sign a contract as soon as we turned 13.

We would not need to objectify first, marry later.

Darn romantic ideology... ruins my life! MY life. MYYYYYYYYYYYYYeeeee life.

This random, sarcastic, but partly sincere comment has been brought to you by the letters M and Y.

hunchback scholar said...

We're tryin', Dude.

RW said...

may I just say that Dave - I appreciate your struggle - I am glad you are thinking about such things... but don't think too much...

and then to Graham's comments.... there are a few of us in the St. Herman circle who think arranged marriages might not be so bad...let us just say that we will highly encourage our children to consider this or that person for a spouse...

somebody said - I have a vague recollection it might have been Dostoevsky -

"choose the one to love and love the one you've chosen"

these are fine words... they are not words for those who fall into the "there is only one for me " - or somewhere out there is the love of my life" -

for I believe we can love anybody - it is in the loving we work out our salvation - this is the work -and let me tell you it is hard work. let there be no mistake my friends... it is learning to love others and to die to oneselves that deification occurs.

so onward we go - please pray for me - for I die reluctantly

Ed Doerksen said...

I guess for an old fart like me it doesn't really matter. I decided to remain single at age thirteen.

I only thought of marriage once and was glad I didn't go through with that adventure.

I try to treat each person with respect, understanding, and equality reguardless of gender.

As far as marriage goes, who ever wants it can have it. As for me, its something that has never really attracted me.

Stacy said...

Seems you're been building on learning this for a while:

Read your earlier thoughts

pasivirta said...

well, apparently so. maybe its undulation, maybe its a balancing act?
I don;t know. I was hoping for this sort of play with the idea,