In traditional societies and even to some extent in a modern context, it’s somewhat expected that men will make an effort to be more masculine and women more feminine. It’s becoming increasingly acceptable for people to challenge gender norms and that is a very positive thing. But gender norms and the energy of masculine and feminine are not always directly correlated. Ideally we will be a perfect balance of masculine and feminine within ourselves and whatever traits we express more dominantly are merely reflective of which side we prefer to embody more often in our relationships.
My understanding of this topic is almost entirely intuitive. I have picked up certain ideas here and there but have not studied this topic at length. I know these kinds of ideas have been explored in psychology, philosophy and even religion, but I think it’s good to include opinions which have not been deeply swayed by any tradition or school of thoughts so I still feel qualified to share some opinions here. Of course, I am interested in learning more though so if you have an interesting book that explores this topic in more detail, please share it with me.
Masculine does not necessarily mean manly nor does feminine necessarily mean womanly
The roles that women and men have played in society do reflect certain aspects of masculinity and femininity but in many instances these have been over exaggerated, or perverted even. For example, someone can cry and still be very masculine, independent but still very feminine. When we realize that we are more balanced when we exhibit both sides, we see how we have been boxed in, sometimes even those who are rebelling against gender stereotypes end up boxed in to the opposite role which was traditionally assigned to them.
It’s important to note that most of us have been living in a masculine dominant society (not to be confused with a male dominated society, which it may also be but which is less nuanced), perhaps since the times of Plato and Socrates. So very much like our political spectrum, everything has been pushed in one direction, balance has not been encouraged and so it’s more common to see confusion and polarity than true harmony. Some believe this is changing now and I am excited to see if it does.
I’d like to explore in detail the traits which I think are masculine and feminine in my next post, but first I want to see how you feel about this, this should be much more interesting as a discussion than an opinion piece or a lecture. is this a concept most of you are familiar with? What are your thoughts?