Friday, 29 April 2011

Every Marriage is Royal

A kiss is just a kiss

On the subject of marriage, I could easily be accused of being cynical given that my own had an unhappy demise. That is a misconception that any reader of my blogs may glean from my many rantings and anecdotes on this long established institution. I'm certainly not overcome with any regrets for terminating my own but, being a die-hard royalist, I've become unashamedly caught up in the international epidemic of wedding fever. I refer of course to the most talked about wedding since Prince Charles and Princess Diana.....which is....the nuptials of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. Today they have been joined in matrimony and are now the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Until death us do part.....perhaps?
An intimate relationship is an adventure and as any adventurer will tell you a companion to share the highs and lows can be an asset. In the context of marriage it is an adventure fraught with no less danger. During the ceremony the Bishop of London mentioned that "every marriage is royal" and how right he is. Too often many of them are a right royal mess! 

Many a rampant believer in matrimony has jumped into it for reasons other than the creation of  an enduring love. When the truth eventually comes out, usually a quarter of a century and several children later, it's not pretty. Dishonesty and deceit have no place in a loving relationship and a marriage with such dishonorable foundations must flounder and falter. God's laws will not be trifled with!

A very modern love
The marriage vows are clear: in sickness, in poverty or worse and in wealth and good health. So why do a great many spouses feel as if they've been dealt a poor hand? Why does coupledom crumble? Why does God allow this if matrimony is a holy state? 

The way I see it is that matrimony is an abstract, divine state but humankind is  not .We are a dense mass of energy with spiritual amneisia. We do not know who we truly are and that's unholy.
Wills & Kate
Sometimes marriage can help us find ourselves and, by the same token, it can be the cause of  the loss of our true selves- our spirits may be crushed and defeated. The support we seek in our spouses is sadly lacking in our time of need. In terms of maturity we have a long way to go (no matter the dates of our birth!).

A healthy marriage consists of consciousness and compassion.  Consciousness enables good choices and compassion allows for true growth....even if it means the ending of the marriage. God, the king of our hearts, has created us for happiness, be that as a marital partner or as a happy divorcee. 
Today, the whole world rocks with joy for the royal newlyweds.

Long live love and long live William and Catherine!

Best of British luck!

Monday, 25 April 2011

The Alpha Male......a dangerous species

100% untamed male

There is usually much debate surrounding the education of women since it appears that it has lagged behind for centuries.Indira Gandhi famously said that the education of women is crucial to the success of a nation. Naturally Mrs Gandhi was acutely aware of this being a woman herself.
To my mind, the education of women has never been an issue.

So macho

My concern is do with the upbringing and management of the Alpha Male  This man is physically strong but emotionally a baby he clings to his mother's breast and later to her apron strings (long after he has left home). His emotional intelligence is neglected and therefore he evolves into a masculine distortion.

An insensitive brute with little empathy for his fellow man and a patronising attutide towards his fellow woman. A poet, painter, philosopher he cannot be. It is this variety of neanderthal male that harbours prejudices and hate so ingrained that all conflicts develop into full blown warfare.

Such men are also doomed to have catastrobefore phic personal relationships. Their egos crush the fresh buds of kindness and gentleness as they struggle to grow towards the light in their hearts. Soon their hearts become choked and toxic from the fumes of their arrogance and contempt that they mete out to their families. As a father and husband this man's behaviour is little more than a prison guard. 

Society supports the alpha male by calling him strong and masterful but anyone in a relationship with him knows that he has failed spectacularly in the art of self-mastery. Beneath the mask of forced geniality, a despot runs free. This is a dangerous member of the human family and how does society contain him?
Proper care and feeding is necessary but it must be tough love and vitamins for the soul. 
Animal rights

This is an individual with arrested development. The finer feelings within his being are starving for the oxygen of love. He has deep seated anger and resentments that require careful management. He is an abuser who has no idea of the emotional destruction he has been the cause of. He vehemently denies that he is responsible for any of the brusied and battered hearts of long suffering family and friends. Basically, the alpha male has no regrets because he couldn't give a s***!

By the law of karma, s*** is what he is destined for. Eventually, he will require or choose isolation. He will have a long time to ponder over the error of his ways in a very hot and hellish place. This is the best medicine and, in the great, celestial, recycling plant, one hopes that he will turn out to be a changed man but I wouldn't hold my breath!


Friday, 22 April 2011

Great (and not-so-great) Expectations

Let's face it....marriage is becoming more obsolete than ever. A friend of mine, whose father died recently at the ripe old age of 88, told me that her mother has never been happier since becoming a widow. This is a couple who were married for 57 years, brought forth four children and lived an outwardly traditional life. 
This woman chose to remain unhappy for 57 years rather than defy conventions and seek her happiness. She sacrificed her own wants and needs until the cold hand of death released her from the unpleasant duty of being a wife. I have no idea how the husband must have felt but  can only imagine that as he was in a dominant position (as husbands of that era were) his needs and desires were pandered to.

Whenever I receive a wedding invitation I get a little depressed. I think of how much will be spent on the bridalwear, jewellery, venue and flowers and how little any of that has to do with the ultimate happiness of the couple. No where is there a sadder reflection of unbridled consumerism than at a wedding.
The romance of money
My wedding day was totally hijacked by the expectations of my nearest and dearest. Today, I balk at the expense. My parents could not really afford it but went to alot of trouble to give me the best they could. I was a babe in arms (an immature, insecure 23 year old) who was prepared to throw herself into the arms of an equally complicated and dysfunctional character, soon to be my husband. This was not the stuff dreams are made of!

Marriage in any generation is a complex affair; the harmonising of two personalities or an unlikely fusion of  lust, lies and laughter.We marry with a set of expectations that never materialise and hopes that are dashed  even before the wedding bed is warmed. A friend  was in tears on the night before her wedding as she knew she was marrying the wrong man. There was no way she could call if off since everything had been bought and paid for. Her happiness was last on the list of wedding gifts!

Love is a powerful force but marriage curbs its potency. Love is unconditional but the male/female union is conditional - that is the heart of the matter. Spiritual love does not demand that two hearts and minds are weighed down by earthly shackles but too often they are.

It's best to have no expectations then you'll never be disappointed. However, it's a dismal life to be so unambitious. So what's  the solution?
Pop goes the marriage!

If I made the rules, I'd outlaw marriage. I prefer to promote personal happiness over seeking happiness in "holy togetherness". Children will then be truly borne out of joyous, spiritual communion rather than mere biology. Ideally, "the couple" should live apart - in their own abodes -  and then join together to share the best with each other and work on their shortcomings in their own time and space. That would be truly holy!

I've advised my children to elope (that's if marriage is a  still a viable instiitution the third decade of the 21st century). I'm opting out of the pomp and glamour. I'd prefer that my children marry real people (those who will allow them to be true to themselves). We must not simply marry into institutions but consciously create a haven furnished with  mutual values and standards....with less of the bling!

As Shakespeare said: "true marriage is a marriage of minds" and you don't have to live in the same house, town or country to establish that. My motto is "expect the unexpected" and your relationship (in whatever shape or form) will always be fresh!


Friday, 15 April 2011

Laziness means never having to say you're sorry

Crazy, hazy, lazy and loveable....that's how we think of our men.  Laziness is one of their guilty pleasures.....that soon turn into a pain. Laziness is a human foible.....animals don't suffer with it as it's part of their constitution....they prey and then rest and play!
Tea break anyone?
No one would ever admonish a crocodile "lazing" near the riverbank or the King of the Jungle when he takes his afternoon snooze that can last well into the evening. No one that is except.....Mrs Crocodile and Mrs Lioness!

Deep thinker
A spouse in the human world has a less than easy time! Whilst laziness does not differentiate between the sexes, in my humble experience, the male in his middle years appears to slow down or even give up completely. This can extend to any activity that does not involve sitting down, channel hopping  or surfing the net.

Males lose the will to pursue healthy activity and women passively support their inertia: "he's been working 8 hours how could he possibly have the strength to put out the trash?" He may get ill if I ask him to clean the bathroom?" 

By contrast, women generally do not cease the daily activities that make them worthy of being a wife and mother. I don't know many women who refuse to cook, clean and wash for their families. None that is except my maternal grandmother who only cooked on special occasions in her old age. This was not a satisfactory state of affairs but it forced my grandfather to take up kitchen duties and become more resourceful.

Women have long been the passive homemakers, (working in and out of the home) suffering in silence whilst fulfilling their obligations. That's why the man-woman relationship is failing so spectacularly in the 21st century. Most young women do not want to end up like their mothers - overseeing the pastoral care of a husband and family. This is work...of a man's making.....if he did more then she wouldn't need to and it'd be more of an equal partnership.

Have you noticed that no spouse or partner is ever apologetic about their lethargy. Many of these traits are inherited and ingrained in them. "My father never washed, ccoked or cleaned; why should I?" Some do it as a fashion; lazy is the new creative.

The bottom line is that no one is ever sorry that the lawn hasn't been mown, the leak in the roof not fixed, the junk at the bottom of the garden not cleared, the dishes in the sink remain unwashed , the car not cleaned, blocked drains or the mouse droppings in the kitchen. No man ever apologises for anything he does and doesn't do. Why should he....when there's someone to pick up after him?

Lazy is as lazy does. If you love him or you're lazy yourself then I wish you much happiness together.
Me? I bailed out....laziness and me just don't get along!

Male Motto


Friday, 8 April 2011

Living beyond your means

Living beyond your far as I'm the only way to live.This has less to do with the spending of money than the spending of our talents. Our talents and abilties define us and give us our "raison d'etre" but too often we hide our lights under a bushel! That's what I've been doing  and I'll bet you have too. As a result we are unspent, overly preserved, coddled, delicate and always saved for a rainy day......just like our best clothes, best china and toys. We keep the best for another day......the tomorrow that never comes.

Staying within our self-prescribed boundaries we feel is right. That's the way our parents brought us up, to mirror their values and insecurities. In spite of how damanging it is repeat the histories of our elders this is when we feel safest. Safe in our cocooned world we bypass changes and avoid testing our psychological mettle in case we fail. Failure means taking responsibility and that means we can't blame anyone for our errors - not even our parents!!   So our God given gifts remain unused and we pass from this life care worn (from looking after the needs of others whilst neglecting our own) but not fully worn out!

Living beyond your means....means....taking life by the heart. It's holding on for dear life when the storms and gales buffet our hearts until they are bloodied and bruised. This is when our talents are revealed and developed. Achievement lives in the Eden of our deepest dreams and desires but we eat from the forbidden tree and banish them to the darkest corners. Our aspirations ride like a herd of wild mustangs seeking new connections and pastures.

To live the dream we must work hard....but not with toil or sweat....but with unshakeable self-belief.  We must not see ourselves as we are but as we can be - powerfully confident and wholly courageous. Merely observing conventions will not take you to the land of living beyond. Not many of  us can go  if we have not been true to ourselves. Our inner critique works overtime to prevent us from reaching any of our goals. I know...because I've been crying for the moon....wishing for this and that...hoping and praying....wondering and sometimes worrying....but it's paid off....dreams do come alive when we focus our energies on them.

Living beyond....and surpassing.....and the work of spirit. Let your spirit be your ruler and your soul the driver. Dream big and live the richest life....use your potential and never undersell yourself.
Heaven is the life beyond that we all seek.


Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Never ending circles.....of abuse

Abuse is part of a dysfunctional personality….and if you believe that we're all dysfunctional then we have to accept that it's part of our nature.....our lower nature where baser instinctics co-exist with the higher ones. Abuse is rife but no one fully admits to it. Abusers have diminished responsibility since they "know not what they do". If we have not been educated correctly (especially in the area of emotional intelligence) and raised in supportive communities then an abuser is in the making.

Abusers are subtle manipulators and exist in a variety of shapes and forms. Many are in the guise of husbands / wives, teachers / doctors / policemen -  in fact any adult that we trust in our homes and in society. That’s why abuse is not easily rooted out…. From sharp words, playful blows, gentle touching to full blown violence….we cannot always see the wood for the trees. These clever exploiters emit so many wrong signals that our soft-wired brains mistake kindness for control and love for lies.
An abuser’s aim is to seek and destroy…..the vulnerable…the sick…the disabled… the young… people who are weakest in society. Women and children are favourite targets. A child’s innocence is  easily visible and violated. Women are perceived as the weaker sex driven by their instincts to protect and nurture so they are subjected to a host of humiliations and cruel acts.  It is the actions of a few progressive thinking women that are bringing awareness and justice to the abused. Still we are a long way from finding lasting solutions.
No person is born to abuse or be abused. This is learned behaviour and stems from fear. Fear causes the weak minded to lash out and make someone pay for their pain. The truth is that we have all suffered pain  – all of us have had something stolen from us – something we believe that is precious and irreplaceable. However, the more enlightened of us find constructive ways to discharge our anguish.
When our minds and hearts grow we know that nothing can truly be taken away. What we have may be damaged and or soiled but rejuvenation and salvation is possible. Acute pain leads to sublime understanding, if we allow it. Much of the time we bury ourselves in deeper despair and consider that we're beyond repair.
Hating abuse or the abuser will not make it stop. Taking a stand against it will. It takes courage to speak out and take action and even greater valour to forgive. Your life moves in cycles and it’s the same in your relationship with this negative force…..when you’re strong enough you’ll recognise it and deal with him or her.


Sunday, 3 April 2011

A Woman in Charge

The recent passing of Hollywood legend, Elizabeth Taylor, is a sad loss. Not only to her family, friends and fans but as a role model for women of spirit and beauty. Beautiful women can often be dismissed as insecure airheads who constantly preen and pander themselves. Undoubtedly Ms Taylor had exquisite beauty and poise. She also possessed an entourage of minions who made her life comfortable together with an extensive wardrobe and opulent jewellery to match. This dame did nothing by halves!
Elizabeth: no shrinking violet

This also applied to her roll call of husbands. No where did she show her strength and single-mindedness more than in the arena of matrimony. Apart from one of her husbands who suffered an early demise, the rest she dismissed. Even the love of her life whom she married twice did not deter her from her trying to find the perfect match. Unlike many of us, she knew what she wanted and she knew what she didn't!

Following her death  no one who has a bad word to say about her. Carrie Fisher made a poignant tribute to her former stepmother: if my father had to divorce my mother for anyone then I'm grateful it was Elizabeth".
Such is the style of this woman whose children described her as "extraordinary".

Liz Taylor was a woman in charge. She was both powerful and fragile yet she was no man's plaything.
She was born to be an actress and nowhere did she play her part as well as in the greatest show on earth -
her life.
Pharoah's phavourite phix