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John Moonstroller

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Would a Matriarchal Society offer a better shot at developing a world of Peace and Harmony?

Men have ruled the world since the dawn of time. Only in very limited situations have women ruled over men and called all the shots.

Would it change the world in a more meaningful way if women only were allowed to be leaders in a country? In essence, I saying what if men and women changed roles in today's world? Would it create a better opportunity to create a world of peace and harmony?

If the roles of men and women were exchanged, except for giving birth to children, would it be possible that they could create a better world for humans to live and prosper? I don't mean that the role of feminism and masculinity should be exchanged. I'm asking what if there were no Kings, just Queens.

Please no Cuss Words or inflammatory remarks made about other peoples religions.
Thank you.

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    Sep 18 2012: Many people are confused about the nature of Matriarchy.

    Matriarchy is not a mere reversal of the current Patriarchial system, which is based on control, ownership, commodities, dominance and power hierarchies. It goes without saying that in our current Patriarchial system EITHER women OR men can be part of the power group or conversely, various stages of the under classes.

    Matriarchy is actually the antithesis of this system, therefore Matriarchy is NOT based on dominance and heirarchy but collaboration, cooperation, and inclusiveness. In fact this was our natural system for most of human development and is the natural system for other primates today.

    It is called Matriarchy because unlike the Patriarchial 'dominant warrior' model, Matriarchy is based around the family group first, in which both males and females have EQUAL power and roles. We still have Matriarchies on the planet today and they have strikingly beautiful characteristics.

    Here is some of them:

    1. They are VERY stable societies (i.e. people are happy!)
    2. There is a LOW INCIDENCE or non existence of violent crime.
    3. Rape is unheard of.
    4. Sexually liberal for both women and men.
    5. Low incidence of mental health issues.
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      Sep 18 2012: You have educated me very well Ms. Donovan. I would love to live in such a society as you describe in your 5 points.

      Please continue.
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        Sep 18 2012: Matriarchy in some form is evidenced among some of the peoples of Asia and Africa, such as those of the Minangkabau, E De (Rhade), Mosuo, Berbers and Tuareg and, in Europe, e.g., Sardinian people among others.

        Barbara Love and Elizabeth Shanklin say in "The Answer is Matriarchy":"When we hear the word 'matriarchy', we are conditioned to a number of responses: that matriarchy refers to the past and that matriarchies have never existed; that matriarchy is a hopeless fantasy of female domination, of mothers dominating children, of women being cruel to men. Conditioning us negatively to matriarchy is, of course, in the interests of patriarchs. We are made to feel that patriarchy is natural; we are less likely to question it, and less likely to direct our energies to ending it."

        Actually if you think about it though, and study some anthropology, ancient iconography and a bit of history, another story begins to unfold. Within this story is quite a deal of hope for humankind. The system that we hold to has only been in place about six thousand years. It began with the first Neolithic farms, with the first fence. It began when the natural process of birth control began to be circumvented by the need to produce offspring to work the land. Thenceforth in some societies, women too became a commodity. Where competition came to dominate, the need to protect property arose and led to heirarchies and the rise of the hero or warrior cult and militarisation.

        And yet, not all societies who chose the route to farming totally reliquished the Matriarchial model and elevated the warrior to dominant status. The answer to why this is, or more importantly, why some many societies DID transition to Patriarchy is very interesting. Unless you like long long discussions....perhaps better not to get me started, lol.
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          Sep 18 2012: The problem here... however is that matriarchy, in this sense, can only exist, by out innovating a patriarchal society in terms of weapons development... Something a matriarchal society never chooses to focus much energy on... unfortunately.

          So, in my mind, the systems are yin and yang... You need some of us brutes to build the weapons for when the patriarchal societies attack. You must remember that it is inherently natural for apex predator species males, to dominate everything they see. In order to get men to participate in society, there need to be certain concessions made... Private property being number one.

          The problem with matriarchy as a theory, is that men simlpy won't tolerate it... More than anything else... Men, often want to be left alone, an incredibly difficult thing in matriarchal society.
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        Sep 18 2012: @David Hamiliton, you see your reply is conditioned by Patriarchy. Men are not brutes, nor do we need weapons built by them or any other member of society. You are right though, when you highlight the problem of transition. In fact this very problem is why Patriarchy exists at all, when in fact some early Matriarchies were often more advanced and sophisticated than early contemporary Patriarchies, which came to dominate them. There is a problem here for sure, but it I am sure, we can find a solution.
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          Sep 19 2012: Okay, I'm going to write a long response to this, and it's going to be a bit of a dark and winding voyage... but first... Like Andres, I am very happy to see you back Joanne. It's always a pleasure having these types of conversations with you specifically because we see things so similarly.. yet so differently, it's always a pleasure.

          Second... Fundamental premise check "in fact some early Matriarchies were often more advanced and sophisticated than early contemporary Patriarchies, which came to dominate them"

          No... They weren't... They didn't have any of the cool labor saving gadgets, that we now all take for granted. Despite the misuse of these gadgets, without them, people could be nowhere near, as happy, healthy, or progressive, as they are today. What made these inventions come into being?

          Well obviously, part of my answer is going to be, competition amongst males for high value sexual targets. "I bring you pretty stone, you not sleep with bigger, scarier, dumber guy?"... But I'll expand a bit more in response to one of your other comments : )
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      Sep 18 2012: Hello Joanne... how i missed reading your comments!

      Question for you... does the definition of Matriarchy also include a less rigid sense of the relation mother-child?

      I seem to recall reading that in some pre-hispanic cultures in America (continent), women in the communities used to take care of groups of children without making a strong distinction on who was whose mother. You can still see a somewhat similar behavior in many small villages in Mexico, where aunts, cousins and grandmothers take care of generations of offspring as a group without making a clear family lineage distinction between them

      Just curious to know your thoughts on that.

      cheers!
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        Sep 18 2012: Yes likewise Andres and you too David Hamilton.

        Yes Andres, you highlight another characteristic of these societies. Homogeneous groups develop. The term for 'mother' can be applied to any woman within the group of a certain age group, especially an aunt. Sometimes the word 'father' is not known, with uncles playing a more important role in the raising of offspring. Sometimes the word 'I' is not known, and only the word 'we'. Also I would apply the word 'brother' to all men about my age within the incest taboo, and the word 'sister' to all females about my age.

        Some of the customs can still be observed among Polynesian peoples today (we have a lot of these communities here in New Zealand) and are certainly well evidenced by the Europeans who first encountered these peoples in the 1800's. (then proceeded to destroy their communities with European patriarchial world view).
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        Sep 19 2012: When I was a child, it was common for all the kids, which gathered together in groups, to all be watered at one kids home or disciplined by one kids parent(s). It was understood in the community, usually on a small scale, say one block of houses, that this type of communal behavior was tolerated.

        Like a small village. This was the inner city environment in which I was raised, in the U.S.
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          Sep 19 2012: Yes John, I know what you re talking about. Its still in all of us, isnt it.
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      Sep 19 2012: "Matriarchy, is not merely a reversal of the current patriarchal system."

      Okay, as a man, born into my generation, I think it's time some of us start getting honest about this issue... You may have been born into a partriarchal society... I was born into a society so torturously matriarchal, that I actually believe it is immoral to have a son. I think it's immoral to reproduce, in general, because of overpopulation... but, if overpopulation wasn't an issue... I already think this is such a female dominated society, that I would feel sorry for any man I brought into this world who wasn't born rich.

      That is the real genuine emotion coming out of my generation of Americans, and that is why were are the most drug addled, pill popping, drunkard, and suicidal generation of men, in decades. Are these personal emotions? Yes, but I've asked other men, and it's not just me... Why don't men say anything... Well... They want to have sex of course.

      What do I mean by torturously matriarchal?

      Well.. Our school system, is based on group work rather than individual achievment, and men have been dropping out of it, in increasing numbers for 3 decades. Psychological studies proved that men would react poorly to group work, because they respond well to individual competition... but those studies were deemed sexist. So we're never going to have a functional school system for men... Ever again.

      Social security, and Medicare aren't sexist... Except for the fact that women live so much longer than men... that African American, and Hispanic men, now actually have a life expectancy below the payout date of both programs. Most men pay an enormous tax their entire life, for a program they will never benefit from.

      Finally what you call a "difficult transition"... I call women sending millions of more men, off to murder millions of patriarchs, to enforce a system, that doesn't even benefit the men who die... and might not work at all, because it hasn't been tried in millenia...
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        Sep 19 2012: First response to David: well lucky I dont have to be into work early this morning! Plenty of great stuff to discuss here, which I too have missed.

        Most of your comments stem from your patriarchial world view, which is set firmly in all of us. Its going to be a bit like trying to convince someone of the ocean who has never seen it David. First let me say, yes you would do very well in a Matriarchy. Sexual frustration and competition for women is much less because there is less or no pressure on the women to remain 'owned' by one man. Relationships are more fluid and a hallmark of these societies is the often have more than one type of 'marriage', sometimes many many kinds.

        But back to our discussion, this remark you made is a clear example of a patriarchial world view; 'So what really bothers me here, is that the idea that matriarchy is peaceful, and stable... Is also paired, with the fact that millions of men, have to kill millions of other men, in order for them to not kill the women who enforce it.' This is a system NOT based on competition, they are by and large NOT militarised.

        The entire way of living in the world is different. Its competition for resources and the need to dominate and control them that eforces hierarchy and militarisation. Its hard to imagine such a place, but they do and have existed even up until today. And history has shown us they can be more sophisticated in terms of technology than their patriarchial rivals. The main problem is how does a system based on holistic collaboration survive next to one based on competition? Tibet v China for example. This is and was always the essential problem. Ask the Iroquoi and the Hopi.
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          Sep 19 2012: Exactly... This system, can only exist, after we kill all the violent psychopaths, religious zealots, and patriarchs... who are willing to die, and murder the innocent to maintain control of women.
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      Sep 19 2012: So what really bothers me here, is that the idea that matriarchy is peaceful, and stable... Is also paired, with the fact that millions of men, have to kill millions of other men, in order for them to not kill the women who enforce it. Also, We're doing this already. The west is already at war with patriarchy... and I'm not a fan of it. Seriously though, since we're dying in this war... can't we at least get credit for being a matriarchy? Or do we have to keep saying men are in charge too?

      This is the society I grew up in... one in which a woman says that women are better at "coalition building, group work, problem solving, multi tasking"... and well basically everything... and then Jon Stewart jokes "Well, someone's still gotta screw in the lightbulbs" to which he recieves a sexist boo.

      http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/wed-september-5-2012/kirsten-gillibrand
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        Sep 19 2012: Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, makes a great case for the issues poised in this debate. Great Video David.
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        Sep 19 2012: Second response to David Hamilton; to further elaborate on the concept of militarisation. If you live in a non-militarised society, you would probably be among a people who see the world in a very different way. They might understand that loss of life, animal or human, and the violation of the earth and air, is a violation of the nurturing priniciple essential to all life including their own.

        If you grew up among this kind of society, how would you view jumping on a horse or in a tank to go and slaughter your neighbour? You would not do it. You and your community would take all steps to avoid it.

        And please be aware, a person born among such a community does not make a moral descison, its not a decision taken AGAINST their TRUE nature, instead, they act from their original humanity; a deep feeling of security and love for the family and environment.

        Its a feeling born in all of us. Its further fostered or rather left intact, if we are then raised in a place where we FEEL nurtured, unviolated, and deeply safe. Its hard for us to even comprehend such a thing. I can hear you say 'yes yes, I saw that movie, it's la la land. The sky is pink there'. But I can tell you , I have witnessed such things. I know they exist, even today.

        The problem arises when your neighbour grows the attitude for whatever reason, that it would be easier to steal your corn and daughters than grow and make his own. This is the age old problem and the point at the heart of your comments.

        In fact, I have no answer for you, except to say, if we dont figure it out soon....well. Its probably curtains for us.

        We who study matriarchy, or similar holistic systems, view patriarchy as a sickness that once it began to spread, could not be stopped, and perhaps cannot be stopped, due to the militarisation principle. Once that begins, communities are forced to capitulate and pick up a weapon, or die, or both.
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      Sep 19 2012: Oh, and I forgot of course, what I alluded to in my short response...

      What do you mean by sexually liberal?

      Because if you mean that good men, and good women, who are productive, and generous, will have their wives and husbands, sleep with whomever they feel like sleeping with... That sounds like a hell for good men to me...
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        Sep 19 2012: Third response to David; long is good. Its important to remember that matriarchial systems are a SYSTEM, as you have heard me say many times, SYSTEMS facilitate certain human behaviours. Matriarchy is just a word, (dont load too much of the feminine stereotype into it) that describes a system based more on our natural human responses to each other and environment, our natural animal contentment and love (again a loaded word but sorry, there IS no substitute).

        Our current violence based system, works against and destroys our basic human responses. Hence the plethora of mental illnesses and the basic sense of un-happiness that pervades our 'advanced' communities today.
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        Sep 19 2012: Well David this deserves a fourth reply; '...gadgets, without them, people could be nowhere near, as happy, healthy, or progressive, as they are today. What made these inventions come into being?Well obviously, part of my answer is going to be, competition amongst males for high value sexual targets. "I bring you pretty stone, you not sleep with bigger, scarier, dumber guy?"

        Vintage David, and I love it, lol. BUT let me ask you, so no competition among males no useful gadgets? Lets just make it clear, first sexual competition is not the only motivation that causes humans to create stuff, and its not only the competitive males who come up with such creations, (shame on you David, :).

        Then of course, I have not suggested that there is no need for each sex to display skills in order to attract a partner . In these societies both sexes do exhibit behaviours, in order to make the opposite sex notice them. Plenty of room for hunting skills, dancing skills, and no doubt, the odd gadget or two.

        Perhaps you want to argue that only in a crucible of violent capitalist (patriarchial) competition, could the wonders of our modern 'progressive' world be wrought? Only in this fusion, could such an explosion of development come about? Perhaps you are right but I don't think so. I think we are transfixed by our recent history, so enamoured by its glamour we are blind to what might have been, or in fact what even perhaps HAS been.
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          Sep 19 2012: What I am saying, is that capitalism is the first non violent competition system ever invented... and from that invention, came a new invention... Nerds, who survive, and reproduce with attractive partners. Intelligent people, who have respect, in masculline society, because, they did things with their mind other men could not do, which made other peoples partners happy.

          There is absolutely no value to gaining skill, if you are not also symetric, and attractive, in the society you describe. Nerds will go back to being cuckolds, if they survive at all.
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          Sep 19 2012: Actually, if we make it another 20 years... maybe nerds will have sex with robots : p

          http://vimeo.com/12915013

          This message, brought to you by... The Space Pope!

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