This article struck me both in personal choices and sexuality, both as an atheist and a feminist.
And the writer of this article is right; at the very least, I do view sexuality as dirty and shameful. In my case, it’s hypersensitive, extending even to pregnancy, however essential it is to the human race, relationships and displays of affection.
Although I (quite happily) don’t really act upon sexuality or relationships, I do still think they’re a relevant point.
In our culture, there is an imbalance of sexual attitudes. In the media, society is sex-obsessed. Yet, and especially towards females, we see it as shameful. I wonder if anyone’s ever written an entire blog post about the psychology of oxymorons, because it sounds like an one to me.
The attitudes in sexual attitudes, both above and in rape culture, is as old as the bible; it’s a traditional value. And it has created an indulgent contempt for sexuality.
Recently, I saw this report about the baby bonus and Caltex supporting women — new moms — in the workforce. They had brought in a range of measures to keep these women in the workforce, in order to save money. Like allowing gay marraige on the registrar, it’s win/win.
It’s an interesting issue, because the last my family and I talked about the baby bonus, my parents — especially my dad — argued that it wasn’t fair; that they hadn’t had help with their childcare, and that they were coddling the new generation.
Maybe you’re wondering, “Shouldn’t any generation want the new generation to have it better?” Not in the current climate; young adults nowadays are seen as too spoiled, unprepared for how much worse they would have it if they hadn’t been born into today.
It isn’t true of everyone, speaking from Generation Y. More important in this debate though, is that the new measures, from what I can see, are in fact strengthening society.
It seems feminist practices are better for the economy. In fact, I would suggest that most moral rights are better for the economy and for society — and those moral rights do not come from traditional values.
If traditional values actually came from a positive history, I would disagree. But in reality, society’s moral history is shady and misled. Our civilisation is still evolving, after all.
Of course, then there are personal issues, which are both inclusive and exclusive of all these other issues.
I think this is one type of issue that everyone can relate to, no matter what their lives and minds are like. Morals and choices are unique to everyone. For example, the choice whether to marry, and when.
What is reasonable to one person is naive to another. One thing mentioned in the article that inspired this post is that when government money is going toward telling people to just wait until marriage, we are literally funding an idea that has never worked in all of human history, instead of supporting tried-and-true policies that could mitigate the harm of a sex-obsessed, but pleasure-starved, culture.
Of course, I’m sure traditionalists consider their beliefs to be “tried-and-true”, but the basic point of this quote is really what I’m going for.
It is interesting to think of good, moral choices as one strict formula. One good choice, compared to a variety of everything else… it’s not quite that simple, of course. There is always the complication of the little things that make your mind up, or the little parts match into your life.
However, if there is one good choice, the must also be one bad choice; the worst mistake. Something, apparently, that hasn’t worked in all of human history.
How then did the idea survive? The author didn’t supply any sources that must’ve lead her to that conclusion, so I don’t really know even the history she meant that it has never worked…
Of course, sex after marriage isn’t the only (religious) traditional value that has resulted in a fucked society.
Another immoral practice garnered from traditional values is circumcision, though I’m sure it doesn’t quite carry the same issues as premarital sex. Still, it’s certainly still problematic to society’s moral perceptions.
According to the article: It turns out that feminist values – not “traditional” ones – lead to the most stable marriages. And feminist views plus later marriage typically equals premarital sex.
But in these two simple sentences, I see yet another context. Morality in religion is something I’ve long questioned, ever since I became an atheist. Modern modes of morality have survived to the present day from religion, so it’s a very valid topic.
Religious people, even Hillsong people, are traditional. Hell, even people who believe in astrology are traditional.
Which isn’t to say there is anything wrong with traditional. I get traditional. Traditionalism’s fine, until you stop growing because you’re still clinging to old ideas that no longer make sense.
It’s only when I examine certain traditional thoughts that I reject it, out of the morality and respect that should be present in all of us.
When Darwin wrote his Origin of Species, he labelled it “provisional”. What this meant was that it wasn’t complete, and if a school of thought ever evolved to prove it wrong, then it was wrong, and we should move on.
I think all thought should be provisional, until it’s proven itself unequivocally true.
Because that’s how we learn, that’s how we grow. And it’s clear that we still have room to grow. We haven’t completely grown yet intellectually, and after all, isn’t that what life is?
You either change for the better, or for the worse. You never stay the same. Life is a journey… and that’s one thing that hasn’t been disproved.