My brothers, it’s time for a change in our collective, subconscious attitude toward women.
To do that, we must first face an uncomfortable truth.
The majority of us tend to view every woman we meet as a potential mate. Sometimes it’s at a subconscious level, sometimes it’s front and center in our thoughts. The truth we can no longer avoid is this: we assess every female who crosses our path through the mating lens, judging her according to how badly we want to f*ck her.
To be fair, evolution programmed us this way, and the patriarchal culture we grew up in conditioned us further by glorifying the sexual conquest of women. It’s not our fault we’re primed to mate with every woman we meet, but it’s our responsibility to deal with this inheritance, to prevent these deeply ingrained instincts from driving us to harm others.
When we don’t face this clandestine side of ourselves, the result is the atrocities revealed by the #MeToo movement. When we allow this part of our nature to run rampant, we turn into Harvey Weinstein.
To better understand this latent aspect of ourselves, a little recognition of our biology can help. Human beings exist today because we evolved successful strategies to pass DNA from generation to generation through mating. As a result of natural selection, men are programmed to mate with as many women as possible, because that strategy efficiently spread the DNA of our species. (For a deeper look at the many illuminating insights evolutionary biology can teach us about human behavior, I highly recommend Why Buddhism is True, by Robert Wright—it’s absolutely fascinating.)
However, the strategies that evolved to most effectively propagate DNA often do not serve us well in modern society. The male approach to mating is one of these relics that no longer benefits us and instead causes incalculable strife. But it’s in our mental programming at a fundamental level, deep down in there. Biologically speaking, it’s the sole reason we exist. Consequently, the effort required to overcome this conditioning can feel immense, insurmountable.
My sisters, you have no idea how difficult it is to handle this ingrained programming, how insistently and insidiously this urge to mate haunts us. I’m not trying to defend our crude actions, but please try to understand what we’re facing. We may not deserve your patience, but we must ask for it.
We no longer exist solely for biology. We don’t have to be slaves to our evolutionary programming. Mindfulness and meditation give us the tools to break free from the limitations of our natural history.
We can’t suppress our programming; if we try to ignore our urges, they will fester and spread like cancer, eventually erupting in violence and anguish. We must shine a spotlight on these hidden cavities of our minds, allow them to see the light, to be healed by the light.
There is no cause for shame for our natures; we must acknowledge and accept this aspect of ourselves.
I know it’s difficult, my brothers. Especially when we’re young. Oh god, how difficult…but it gets easier with age, and with mindfulness. There is hope. We don’t have to be ruled by our primitive nature; we can choose another path. We can view all women we meet as sisters, as fellow humans to connect with, to share our joy and sorrows with.
Recently, I’m learning to see past the mating urge. A breakthrough in one interaction with a sister has snowballed into a radical transformation in my interactions with all women, allowing me to view the women I meet as sisters, not mates. This enables me to connect with women as friends, and these connections bring my soul the nourishment I need to accept myself as I am.
It’s extraordinarily liberating, stepping back from the mating game. I no longer worry so much about other people’s opinion of me, because I’m not trying to win any mates. I can be my authentic, weird, goofy self, because I’m not trying to influence how others see me.
When we focus on trying to win a mate, we constrict ourselves. If we try to act in a way we think will be attractive to women, we’re aren’t free to express our true selves. When we’re thinking, calculating, trying to manipulate another’s opinion of us, it’s difficult to find the flow of our own lives.
Mindfulness is the key. The first step is to notice when the mating programming takes over. Once we become aware of the programming and we recognize it in action, then we can start choosing alternate paths. It’s a process, a long, difficult process, but it’s better than the alternative. It’s better than a life spent as an unaware slave to biology.
My brothers, if you’re feeling tired and frustrated by the unending chase after women, it’s time to turn inward and pursue your true nature instead.
I’ll expound upon this topic in future posts, please ask me your questions!
Relephant: Dear Men who Love Women, Please Hear Me Out.