PAULthinksmusings by a feminist
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I love women because I think they’re wonderful. What I hope is that you might also share that opinion, especially if you are one. That could sound sexist; there’s an implication there that I think women are better than men. That’s not the case at all! I just like them more, personally. (You’re welcome to write all about the greatness of men if you like, but I don’t care to.) Beyond that, though, I use that specific superlative because I like that I can interpret it both as “full of wonders” and “causing one to feel wonder”.

I feel it’s important to clarify that just because I make such a sweeping statement about that half of the human race doesn’t mean I think it’s necessarily true about every individual who happens to have (or appear to have) two X chromosomes. There do exist bitches who are nowhere close to fitting my broad declaration. And by now you may have noticed that I avoid referring to women as a gender and that’s also a conscious decision. I’ve come to think that there are a great many points between completely masculine and completely feminine on the gender spectrum and that any individual may well fit anywhere in that range, regardless of their physical appearance. But I’ll explore that topic more later.

Going back to my argument, I look at something like this video of mostly women dancing and I think there is much remarkable within them. They stir a sense of admiration and awe within me.

http://www.youtube.com/v/nN0AyGVN-eY

It’s not just their grace and physical prowess, though that is impressive. I see many more qualities in that routine that exemplify what I love in women:

  • There is physical contact and cooperation aplenty right from the start. These women don’t merely follow a plan; they can meld their bodies together to work as a fluid whole. Each is individual and unique, but all invest themselves into this performance to make it the best they can together.
  • They dress up in costume. Pop psychology may claim that wearing a mask indicates a dislike of self or an act of cowardice, but I don’t entirely agree. I feel that taking on a masquerade can indicate a strong sense of identity. These dancers don’t need their faces to be visible because they are confident in who they are and what they are doing so can take on another guise just as confidently.
  • They act like peculiar characters. When a person can pretend to be someone or something very different from herself, it shows me a tremendous empathy. That ability to really project oneself into another’s mindset is a valuable asset in many endeavors, not the least of which is communication.
  • They are passionate. The range of emotion that these women convey in their movements is as astonishing in its magnitude as it is in its subtlety. I don’t know if I feel that much. There are definitely times when I wish I did. Yet I know from personal experience that this is still just a glimpse of the fires that can burn within women.
  • They can be silly! Oh, that is such a difficult thing for me to be. It lifts my heart when I can see someone set aside the seriousness of the world and infuse their actions with happy insouciance. It is an element of childishness that helps make life enjoyable and I envy women that so many can keep it through all their years.
  • They are purposefully pretty. There’s a cruel deceit pretending to be on the side of empowering women that claims wanting to look nice is shallow and therefore undesirable. That’s nonsense. Certainly, there are more important things in life than having a pleasant countenance, but it is ingrained in all of us to want an attractive exterior. Just as it can be a valid observation that when a person doesn’t care about their appearance they may not care about themselves, the opposite is also true. Denying the fact that when we think we look good, we feel good, is no more helpful to anyone than denying that a pain can indicate an injury. Of course, that analogy gives me a fine place to point out that hurting yourself in the attempt to look good dismisses the value of your feelings and that is going too far.
  • And of course, they are creative. Not only are all but two of these performers women of varying ages, the choreographer is a woman as well. Look at what they can create! Even among my small circle of acquaintances, I never stop being amazed at the artistic capabilities and sensibilities I find in the women that surround me.

That’s just a bit of what I see in that performance, but I’ll stop rather than keep going on about it. And even that video only just touches upon what moves me.

That word creative reminds me that women carry most of the burden of creating life. I am not particularly impressed that women have uteruses, ovaries, and vaginas nor that they can carry a child in their wombs. Those are all lovely but they are mere facts of biology. On the other hand, I am amazed that women can choose to suffer the indignity of having their bodies attacked and distended from within, can voluntarily experience the worst pain imaginable, and then sometimes even choose to repeat the process. And when they choose to undergo such experiences, it’s in order to bring about a new life to love which will, frankly, burden them for a damned long time.

Of course, men can possess most of the qualities above; not every woman possesses them all. And men and women both can contain numerous great characteristics that I haven’t even listed. My point again is never that women are better than men. Sometimes, they’re not even all that different. That last bit is why I don’t believe that women should be given some sort of special pass just because their biology isn’t the same as that of the patriarchal designers of most cultures around them. Every woman, just as every person, should be judged on her individual merits.

No, it is just that these are aspects that I can find in women and I often do find them in tremendous amounts. They can be so great that my breath is taken away and my heart swells and I find them glorious. Yet, and I touched on this in the last post, some women either don’t believe that they possess such worthwhile features or dismiss them as unimportant. And I am astonished by that!

So it is not that I’m trying to reveal some secret reason to appreciate women. It’s not that they possess attributes that can’t be found anywhere else. It’s that we shouldn’t, nor women nor men, dismiss the obviously fantastic traits in womanhood. It does not matter if you find creativity or passion or some other great quality in every single person around you. Its prolificacy does not diminish its value.

Stop ignoring the beauty that so often runs deep in women and perhaps you’ll start to agree with my opinion of them. Really, at that point, it should be no wonder.

About Paul Roth

A vegetarian, agnostic, lindy-hopping, dog-loving tv-watcher who likes to read his own words.
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One Response to For Love of Women, Part 2: Wonder

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