emasculation + masculation

Dear men and women,
a question about gender roles:
specifically, “How do women feel about being ‘masculated’ in our culture?”
and, “How do men feel about being ‘emasculated’?”

Okay, that’s two questions. And there are more below.

The popular interpretation of the Samson and Delilah myth is that Samson lost his strength because Delilah had his hair cut off. This interpretation is sometimes used as an analogy for the emasculation of men that sometimes happens when traditional gender roles are conflated without conscious intention.

In an ideal world, perhaps we wouldn’t need to talk about gender, but the reality is that our gender roles have evolved over millennia and they serve important social functions. If we discard and/or conflate them with reckless abandon, each individual in a relationship could lose touch with their culturally conditioned identity and begin to suffer identity crises that can become debilitating if not consciously addressed.

I think it’s worth pointing out that while “emasculate” is commonly understood, it would seem that “masculate” has not been used since 1620, the same as everyone knows the meaning of “misogyny”, but not “philogyny”. Based on the squiggly red lines, Microsoft certainly doesn’t acknowledge even the existence of these words. Such is the unfortunately dominant nature of patriarchy in our culture.

A lot of men are painfully aware that gender-role conflation can feel emasculating sometimes, but I wonder:

how do women feel about being masculated?

This is an actual word, “masculate”, meaning “to make masculine and/or strong”.

Do women have to become ‘more masculine’ to be successful in our culture?

Is success defined in our culture in primarily masculine terms?

If so, is this why competition is valued more than collaboration?, winning more valued than supporting others to succeed?

What effect does this have on our relationships?

If we have emasculated men and masculated women (men who feel pressure to be more feminine, and women who feel pressure to be more masculine), will the children of our families develop into androgynous hybrids, or transgender ~ into beings who are biologically male or female but who identify as the other or neither?

Is all of this indicative that we are evolving into a species that transcends dualism? Or devolving into the ‘mindset’ of single-cell androgynous organisms?

water dream + driving dream

I want to share these dreams here because I can’t make sense of them ~ the metaphorical meaning of my dreams is usually immediately and strongly clear to me, so I’m feeling a bit foggy about these ones.
We were at someone else’s house, evidently having broken in or gate-crashed the place ~ however we got in, we were not supposed to be there, or so we thought. We were having a party of sorts, being somewhat raucous, jumping in the pool, playing music, generally being a nuisance, like teenagers or something. There was a moment when I was underwater, though I couldn’t exactly see or feel the water ~ I just couldn’t breathe and was worried, and floating. Someone told me there was air over there, and I moved myself to where there was a straw-like thing coming out of a flat-ish round plate, and when I sucked on the straw I got some air, but it was kinda bubbly or fizzy (like I was sucking on a soda stream gas bottle) and wasn’t entirely satisfying, but it seemed to be enough, and that was the end of that scene. Later, the owners of the house came home and parked their cars behind ours, and we couldn’t get out. We panicked a bit because we would have to face them, but I resigned myself to it and when we interacted and we said sorry for being in their house, they said it was okay and they had been observing us from the neighbours’. The people I was with were indistinct, and they feel now like they were more like aspects of myself than like distinct entities.
In the other dream I was driving a late-model manual car (and I’m uncomfortable driving late-model cars in waking life as it is), but in this dream it was worse because I was sitting askew in the seat and having trouble both steering and changing gears, but this only become evident when I shifted position and suddenly I was driving like a normal person. I was still struggling somewhat to change gears smoothly, but I was making progress in learning how to drive this foreign vehicle, though I felt very much like a learner driver. (In waking life I’m a good driver, and can even drive semi-trailers.) At some point, my perspective shifted at the same time as the car careened out of control, left the road, and ended up in a grassy ditch. I watched this from the median strip and it felt distinctly as though someone else had been driving and was responsible for the crash.
Three events from waking life that may be significant: I had a friend over at the house where I’m house-sitting, and on her last night here we got boozey on the back porch ~ she’s an effervescent person and quite loud, and there was a moment or two in the early morning when I worried we were disturbing the neighbour; at the house where I’m house-sitting, I accidentally broke an incense holder that is shaped very much like the straw-thing I sucked on for oxygen; I was playing a racing-car video game recently (which I rarely do ~ and I rarely drive actual cars these days) and I totally sucked at it, crashing all the time.
I’m very much interested in the question of whether dreams are merely the brain integrating memory or whether they come from a deeper source, like the collective ancestral mythological memory. These two dreams I had, they happen to have elements that correspond with my waking life, but if it’s more than just memory integration, am I being told some message from my unconscious through the collective memory? Like, “Don’t be a douche by getting boozey and keeping the neighbours awake” 😀 Probably there’s more to it than that, so I invite and welcome any and all other interpretations.

morphic resonance and collective consciousness

I came across this guy called Rupert Sheldrake, who has proposed the idea of ‘morphic resonance’ to explain how and where we retain memory, an idea that has powerful potential implications for the development of our understanding of things like collective memory and collective consciousness. Here is an introduction from his website.

Morphic resonance is a process whereby self-organising systems inherit a memory from previous similar systems. In its most general formulation, morphic resonance means that the so-called laws of nature are more like habits. The hypothesis of morphic resonance also leads to a radically new interpretation of memory storage in the brain and of biological inheritance. Memory need not be stored in material traces inside brains, which are more like TV receivers than video recorders, tuning into influences from the past. And biological inheritance need not all be coded in the genes, or in epigenetic modifications of the genes; much of it depends on morphic resonance from previous members of the species. Thus each individual inherits a collective memory from past members of the species, and also contributes to the collective memory, affecting other members of the species in the future.

Something I wonder about frequently and somewhat obsessively, is the question of where dreams come from, where our predispositions come from and how mythology informs reality. I have this idea I’m calling “cultural archetypes” and I’m sure it’s just an idea that’s coming to me from the collective memory ~ it’s not my idea: I’ve just received it. I’m sure that Jung talked about it, but I haven’t yet come across where he wrote about it.

When we interpret the flux of reality, we perceive it approximately the same as the next person because our interpretation is based on cultural archetypes remembered from the past. This idea of morphic resonance seems to support this idea, so I’m excited to have discovered it.

What do you know about morphic resonance or the templates we use to interpret reality?