This is the third post in a series where I ask my readers about their thoughts and opinions concerning some subjects that have been on my mind as of late.
Saved by the Bell(curve)
One mistake that I see a lot of folks making is to assume that female attractiveness follows a perfect bell curve. More than that, they assume that the curve is centered around 5. I disagree on both accounts, but will address the later first.
From my experience, when women are eating healthy and keeping fit, the “average” young woman is a not a “five”, but closer to a “six”. Some people seem to associate an “average girl” with a “plain girl”, and I think this is a mistake. Now, each man’s own “1-10 scale” is different, and so trying to gauge a woman’s average beauty is difficult and of little utility. But from what I can tell, men base each “number” or rank in absolute terms. That is, they assign each number based on what they have seen the range of female attractiveness to vary from, with “1” being the absolute worst to “10” being the absolute best. Men don’t “curve” this ranking so that the majority of women fall into the “5” category, instead they assign women to the “5” ranking because they are in the middle of the ranges of female beauty they are familiar with.
In addition, I don’t believe that female beauty follows a perfect distribution. In fact, I would argue that there are more women who are attractive than there are women who are ugly, at least, when take factor in obesity skewing results. Assuming that “6” is the average, I think that there are at least as many “7”s as there are “5”s, and as many “8”s as “4”s. And while “9”s and “10”s are rare, I think there are as many women in those two categories as there are natural “3”s, “2”s and “1”s (the latter is exceptionally rare indeed). Here is my attempt to create a graphical representation of this:So, agree/disagree? Am I way off base here?
Free Will and Justice
Christians often have a difficult time reconciling our understanding that God is just with the fact that most sinners seem to “get away” with their sins. As a result, many of us question our faith and wonder if God is really out there, and if so, if He really cares about us or what we do. In dark times such as these, I think we are more apt to engage in such inquiries. Lest we become too troubled, however, we should remember that this seeming disparity/inequity is an age old problem. The book of Job, which is essentially a single parable covering many topics, addresses the prosperity of the wicked:
7 Why do the wicked live,
reach old age, and grow mighty in power?
8 Their offspring are established in their presence,
and their descendants before their eyes.
9 Their houses are safe from fear,
and no rod of God is upon them.
10 Their bull breeds without fail;
their cow calves and does not miscarry.
11 They send out their little boys like a flock,
and their children dance.
12 They sing to the tambourine and the lyre
and rejoice to the sound of the pipe.
13 They spend their days in prosperity,
and in peace they go down to Sheol.
14 They say to God, ‘Depart from us!
We do not desire the knowledge of your ways.
15 What is the Almighty, that we should serve him?
And what profit do we get if we pray to him?’
16 Behold, is not their prosperity in their hand?
The counsel of the wicked is far from me.
17 “How often is it that the lamp of the wicked is put out?
That their calamity comes upon them?
That God distributes pains in his anger?
18 That they are like straw before the wind,
and like chaff that the storm carries away?
19 You say, ‘God stores up their iniquity for their children.’
Let him pay it out to them, that they may know it.
20 Let their own eyes see their destruction,
and let them drink of the wrath of the Almighty.
21 For what do they care for their houses after them,
when the number of their months is cut off?
22 Will any teach God knowledge,
seeing that he judges those who are on high?
23 One dies in his full vigor,
being wholly at ease and secure,
24 his pails full of milk
and the marrow of his bones moist.
25 Another dies in bitterness of soul,
never having tasted of prosperity.
26 They lie down alike in the dust,
and the worms cover them.
27 “Behold, I know your thoughts
and your schemes to wrong me.
28 For you say, ‘Where is the house of the prince?
Where is the tent in which the wicked lived?’
29 Have you not asked those who travel the roads,
and do you not accept their testimony
30 that the evil man is spared in the day of calamity,
that he is rescued in the day of wrath?
31 Who declares his way to his face,
and who repays him for what he has done?
32 When he is carried to the grave,
watch is kept over his tomb.
33 The clods of the valley are sweet to him;
all mankind follows after him,
and those who go before him are innumerable.
Job’s lament is an entirely human one that we are all likely to ask at least one point in our life. There are really two questions here, both related but distinct.
The first question is: why does God let this happen? The answer is easy enough: Free Will. God has given us free will, that we might choose to do good or evil. If God were to intervene whenever someone acts wickedly, then it would nullify our free will. Free will is an exercise in causality, of cause and effect. If you remove the effect, then the cause is meaningless and free will along with it. In essence, unless free will can lead to negative consequences, whether to ourselves or others, it might as well not exist because our choices lose any semblance of being different from one another.
The second question is: how does this comport with God being just? The answer is provided by Jesus:
24 He put another parable before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field, 25 but while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat and went away. 26 So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared also. 27 And the servants of the master of the house came and said to him, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have weeds?’ 28 He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ So the servants said to him, ‘Then do you want us to go and gather them?’ 29 But he said, ‘No, lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.’”
God is biding his time. At the end of the Age, the weeds, that is, the Wicked, are destined for the fire. Yes, they may “get away with it” for a time. But they will not escape justice in the end.
Stand Up and Be Heard
Over at Haley’s Halo there has been a rather heated and long conversation going on involving the apparent drop off of interest in dating among Christians. The discussion is long, and there is too much to cover in a single, short post. Perhaps the most interesting facet of that post is the appearance of a newcomer to the manosphere, a woman who goes by the moniker FeminineButNotFeminist. She used the thread as a place to ask a lot of questions, many of which are quite good. Amongst her many comments was something that I thought worthy of exploring:
When we see guys (mainly non-christian) practically trip over each other to go after the easy girls while making fun of those who don’t give it up so easily (calling us prudes and acting disgusted by that) we come to believe that “if I’m willing to have sex with a guy he will want me, if I’m not willing he will be disgusted by me. Therefore the logical thing to do to get a guy is to have sex with him”. You may say “it’s the other way around!”, but unfortunately not enough christian men are making their views known to us to make us think twice about it. Like I said in another post, I was totally unaware of this until I came across this blog a few days ago, and my head is still spinning from this revelation.
FBNF, as I will call her from now on, doesn’t seem to understand why Christian men don’t make their preferences for chaste women clear. Other comments of hers express the same thing to different degrees, but she is genuinely perplexed by this reticence on the part of Christian men. Here is how I replied:
[A]ddressing your desire to see Christian men speak up about their preferences in female behavior…
That can be difficult for men to carry out in many instances. The feminization of the Church in recent years has created an especially hostile environment for men in some churches. It is so bad that in some churches men cannot speak up about what they really believe/feel without getting kicked out.
This is no accident. The increased power of women and the cowardice of male church leaders who bow to female whims was designed, in part, to achieve this end: silence men. At least, that is my running theory. Others hold to it as well, I believe.
To expand on this a bit, one of the many motivations of the feminization of society has been to curtail the ability of men to exercise their preferences. Men and women are in something of a constant competition between one another over how society should be organized. For a long time men were “winning”, but the actual results where fairly balanced in terms of what men and women received under social systems.
Male and female sexual strategies are at odds, and have always been so. Men prefer polygamy, whereas women prefer serial monogamy. However, polgyamy benefits only a few men at the expense of the rest, and so is not a terribly stable system. In the West, and many other places, this was dealt with by enforcing “hard” or lifetime monogamy, which we would understand as marriage in its original form. This system had the best results for women and men both. However, men are often very particular about what kind of women they are willing to commit to. Chastity, in the form of a woman being a virgin until marriage (or being a virgin until sleeping with the man whom she eventually marries), was a huge component of this. For men, female sexual history matters (although in some cultures it is less important, but I suspect that this sentiment is still there in some form), in that men prefer a number of partners as low as possible. Women, however, are not at all concerned with male sexual history, and if they are, they are looking for a man with a higher number. Which effectively puts male and female desires at odds with one another.
What does this mean? It means that women in some ways benefit from a society that encourages promiscuity, because their own sexual history has less of an impact on their marriage prospects, plus they are better able to screen for more attractive men (who will have more sexual partners). In short, the present SMP is good for non-virtuous women. And I suspect that many of them know this.
So where does this play into men making their preferences heard? Simple. A man who actively expresses his preferences for female chastity is threatening the female preferred SMP. His expression of preferences is a challenge to the current model, as they are incompatible. The only way for his to become reality is for the present system to fall. Many, even most, women do not want this. They like the present system. And so they will do whatever it takes to preserve the existing system. That means exercising their group influence to try and silence men who speak up about their preferences. They will confront Church leaders and force them to choose between angering most of the church’s women, or cracking down on a single man. Which do you think church leadership will do? Any man who sticks his head out by speaking up is making himself a target.
It Makes Me Tremble, Tremble
Elspeth has been wondering why the fear of the Lord has left the church. I offered one suggestion in the comments to that post, but would like to offer another:
Very few people, Christian or Jew, have ever truly feared the Lord. Wickedness is the norm in human/biblical history, and those of us who keep the faith all too easily forget it. The Israelites had hardly escaped the Egyptians at the Red Sea, saved only by divine intervention, before they began to worship a golden calf.
Most “moral” behaviors were only followed in the past because society enforced some form of punishment for their transgression. Whether it was murder, adultery, fornication or theft, there was a price to be paid for violating moral laws which were also Christian tenets. Sometimes the punishment was criminal, while at other times it was only social. Either way, it was the fear of immediate, worldly punishment that kept most people in line. Those who could get away with it, or thought they could, would often ignore those laws.
The reason why so many “Christians” flagrantly and repeatedly violate Christian teaching nowadays is because they are no longer punished in a worldly fashion. They can, in effect, “get away with it”, to steal a line from above. You see, they don’t really believe. Oh, they may say they do. But you know a tree by its fruits. Few really take Christianity to heart, especially from a young age. Usually it requires a “Come to Jesus” moment, inspired by worldly hardship, before most Christians will actually embrace the faith.
So, to answer Elspeth’s question, fear of the Lord never left the church. It was never there to begin with.
Does this comport with other people’s perceptions of the Church? Am I off my rocker to think that “Churchianity” is the norm, and has been throughout history?