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Averroes



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:45 pm

Paineful wrote:
I think that's a non-sequitur. Why the assumption that you can't have multiple intimacies? As long as fidelity is not an issue, I think that's entirely possible, thus plural marriages. But intimacy does not even require a lasting relationship, only one that isn't shallow--and even that isn't necessarily wrong, again, if fidelity isn't an issue.

I can agree with the above. The key is genuinely intimate relationships entered and left on complete fidelity. As a matter of fact, this is why I'm not convinced that either marriage or nuclear family is really that important. So long as young and poor women are not having children and are not on drugs, there seems to be no reason why me must have traditional families with both a father and a mother. No data shows that traditional nuclear families do a better job of inculcating honesty and fidelity in their children; and reciprocally, one can advocate that so long as a single parent (say, a father) has a conscience that is integrated with honesty (which means that not only does he not coerce or decieve others, but that he is diligent in his responsibilities towards his child/ren), coupled with sobriety and steady income above poverty, that by all means his children would stay off drugs and violence and would be just as likely to succeed in life and perhaps become more honest than their counterparts broughtup in traditional families. I think I could be such a father who can raise children in such a way even without the assistance of a woman. Not that I'll deprive them of their mother's touch, but it shouldn't really matter who the parents are (single parent, gay parents, multiple parents) so long as they are involved in a child's life, and they themselves are neither violent, nor on drugs, nor in such dire straits that they have difficulty surviving on their own without welfare or constant travel.

However, you haven't answered my question on the relevance of prostitution and pornography. Are these professions wrong in your opinion? And if not, then would you try to dissuade your own daughter or son from joining that trade?
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Averroes



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:53 pm

Gnomon wrote:
No. But we should encourage them to look before they leap. The pernicious effects of vices usually follow relatively innocent first steps. Teenagers especially are poorly-equipped to make rational judgments about future consequences. That's where parents come in: first to inform of negatives they'd rather not think about; then if that fails, to exercise authoritative restraint. Once they are on their own recognizance, self-knowledge and self-restraint must take over the protective role of parents.

PS---Prostitution and promiscuity are simply dating taken to an extreme. Children should learn early-on the lesson of "moderation in all things". Moderation may seem boring, but it will seldom get you in trouble. (except maybe at an orgy)

I can agree with this. Basically what you're calling moderation is what I call modesty. This is also the thrust of Paineful's post, where he identifies moderation/modesty with intimate and faithful relationships.

So would you agree with the statement that the reason moderation/modesty/fidelity within relationships is desireable is so that intimacy does not get detached from sexuality; and the reason this is important is because in cases of excessive promiscuity, where sex and intimacy are detached from each other, humans loose their natural ability to pair bond for life, which is supposedly the best way to raise a child?
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Thu Dec 27, 2007 2:24 pm

Averroes wrote:

So would you agree with the statement that the reason moderation/modesty/fidelity within relationships is desireable is so that intimacy does not get detached from sexuality; and the reason this is important is because in cases of excessive promiscuity, where sex and intimacy are detached from each other, humans loose their natural ability to pair bond for life, which is supposedly the best way to raise a child?

Yes. As we all know, pair bonding is a delicate structure. Both parties must sacrifice some of their self-interest in order to provide for a third party: the child.

Human nature is dualistic. We are both sexual animals, and consequential thinkers. Animals are paired or promiscuous by nature; they have no choice in their behavior. But humans can go either way, depending on our parsing of the good vs evil potential. Each individual must make a personal choice whether to be faithful or promiscuous.

Society will judge when our choices go beyond the limits of propriety. I have no idea how G*D will judge our moral wrestling. But again, I'm placing my bet right in the middle of moderation. If they feel lucky, risk-takers can shoot for the extremes, and see what happens. d'oh
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Paul Anthony

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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Thu Dec 27, 2007 4:27 pm

Averroes wrote:


It would appear that the reason humans have developed year long sex drives is to create a bond of intimacy between a couple. And this is key: We all recognize that sex creates a special bond between a man and a woman, and so the reason promiscuity (having frequent multiple sex partners) is wrong is because it detaches sexuality from intimacy, whereby sex becomes much like having food; and it is my conjecture that when this happens to individuals they become mal adapted to have a family--they even stop wanting to have children since in their subconscious the primary motivation for sex is no longer reproduction. And the proof of my assertion is the negative birth rate in the most advanced countries of the world--its not just that people are having less children because of increased education and wealth, but that they are not having children at all such that inspite of immigration the population of Europe is declining, that of Japan in barely stable, and that if United States is kept stable only due to increased child birth among immigrants: The reason immigrants are having more children is partly due to their traditional agrarian views on family, partly due to strict taboo against abortion as among Catholic Hispanics in United States, and partly due to conservative views on promiscuity as among the Muslims of European Union.

All true, but here's something to consider: You acknowledge evolution as the driving force behind our development for the benefits gained - the survival of the species in a harsh environment full of predators. Now, consider that our environment has changed. We are no longer threatened by saber-toothed tigers while searching for food, nor attacked in our sleep by nocturnal hunters. Rather than struggling to populate the planet, we are now facing the danger of over-population!

Evolution isn't over. Maybe our attitudes toward sex are changing because they should. We are free to enjoy sex without the need to propagate, and in fact it may be best for the species if we reproduced less.
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Paul Anthony

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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Thu Dec 27, 2007 8:14 pm

And, something else to consider: Monogamy was not the cultural standard until the 5th century. Polygamy was common in the time of Jesus, and he did nothing to change it. The characters in the Old Testament had many wives and concubines, and it was apparently okay with God.

But, as long as a man could have many wives and many, many children there was always someone to inherit the family wealth. In the 5th century, the Church (which at that time was also the government) decreed that marriage would be between one man and one woman, so that the Church might have a better chance of acquiring wealth. It was an economic decision, made with no Biblical or religious justification. The same greed was the reason priests were forbidden to marry. The Church did not want Church property to be inherited by families.

We have grown accustomed to monogamy as the standard, but it is neither the result of evolution nor of religion.

There's a great story of a missionary interviewing a primitive tribesman: When asked if his people were polygamists, he replied "yes", they were allowed to have many wives. When asked why he didn't have multiple wives, he replied "My wife won't let me".
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Averroes



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Fri Dec 28, 2007 4:18 pm

Paul wrote:
You acknowledge evolution as the driving force behind our development for the benefits gained - the survival of the species in a harsh environment full of predators. Now, consider that our environment has changed. We are no longer threatened by saber-toothed tigers while searching for food, nor attacked in our sleep by nocturnal hunters. Rather than struggling to populate the planet, we are now facing the danger of over-population!

While I'm convinced that the environment is changing and we ought to do something about it, such as rapid development in third world via free market reforms globally, encouraging populations of harzardous coastal cities to migrate inwards, and most of all, devise a global plan for mass migrations when the time comes--which will leads us closer to the neo-liberal/Kantian goal of One World Federation; nevertheless, I think that the planet can easily taken in 10-12 billion human beings.

Consider the fact: The popuation density of Belgium, Holland, or Manhatten etc. is twice that of India, and at parity with the major slums of that country, and yet the quality of life of people is as advanced as anywhere on this planet. The problem is not been, never been, over population. We've so much food in the world that theoretically, people in Sub Saharan Africa should've been complaining about obesity related health issue. The problem is the governments and the socialist/authoritarian schemes that've made the people lazy and their governments inept thanks to a deep cultuer of cronyism.

Paul wrote:
Evolution isn't over. Maybe our attitudes toward sex are changing because they should. We are free to enjoy sex without the need to propagate, and in fact it may be best for the species if we reproduced less.

Valid argument. That is why I'm asking you your opinion about prostitution, including stripping and acting in pornographic movies? And wheter we should encourage our children to adopt promiscuous professions just like we encourage them to become a doctor, lawyer, or even a plumber. Clearly, if natural selection has turned the tide where humans are now responsible for the healthy balance in nature, and that our technological prowess has eliminated all the natural barriers that plagued mankind, and sex is now available for us to enjoy freely, then why still maintain cultural taboos against the commercialization of sex such that even on shows such as Jerry Springer, the women that showup are still called called "hoes" "sluts" and "whores" by the audience, and these are not accolades to say the least? (The same goes for men too).
Why not encourage our children to get involved, honorably, in a trade where they (at least young girls, and women more than men) can make a lot of money and even pay for college if they want to get into other areas? Why not encourage women, who are not committed to someone else, to sleep with their superiors and think of it at the same kind of boot polishing as inviting your boss out for a bbq at home or doing his laundry?

Of course, as I said, if we do accept the slippery slope of sexual freedom, it would destroy family; and the harm, the actualy harm would be to the society where children brought up by such sexed up parents would rarely adopt charity and restraint as virtues. Why? Because, as I see around myself today, increased promiscuity leads towards greater feelings of resentment, envy, and agreesion within sexes and between sexes, and further alienates the delicate but natural desire to establish longterm bonds between a man and a woman (or a man and a man etc.) thereby ruining the best possible way in which to raise children.

But at the same time, could it be arranged through education and shift in social norms that the poor stopped having children, and the richer the person the more children they had, or adopted, then clearly there would be no need for a nuclear family with both a mother and a father. As long as men could become devoted fathers because they loved being fathers, and as long as they had the resources to raise a child on their own, promiscuity would not only work it may trump the traditional family.

But while I remain hopefull of that day, I'm as of yet, unconvinced that such as scheme would ultimately triumph. Family and attachments are fundamentally emotional bonds; and the thing about reason is that it is an alienating device that leaves the rational/calculating man on his own. It is great in creating business networks, advancing science, even philanthropy; but it is miserable at producing attachments; that is where sentiments come in that rely upon emotions and our subconscious preferences.
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Paul Anthony

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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Fri Dec 28, 2007 7:46 pm

Averroes wrote:


But while I remain hopefull of that day, I'm as of yet, unconvinced that such as scheme would ultimately triumph. Family and attachments are fundamentally emotional bonds; and the thing about reason is that it is an alienating device that leaves the rational/calculating man on his own. It is great in creating business networks, advancing science, even philanthropy; but it is miserable at producing attachments; that is where sentiments come in that rely upon emotions and our subconscious preferences.

This sounds reasonable on the face of it, but do I detect an underlying current that would reflect favorably upon an older tradition? That wherein the woman (who is often better suited to provide the emotional support) stays home and raises the children, while the man (who is often better suited to handle the rational/calculating tasks of business) goes off to work to provide the financial support for the family unit.

Yes, that sounds familiar. And it worked well - as long as the women remained uneducated and subservient! We don't have that model as an option anymore, for obvious reasons. But its demise has caused much confusion about the responsibilities of parents in a world where the sexes are considered equal. IMO, the failure of the family is more the result of this loss of division of labor and responsibility than the result of promiscuity. Promiscuity existed in the old model, albeit limited mostly to the male who had more opportunity (not to mention more financial liquidity), but it is really not so new. More open, yes, and available equally to both sexes, yes, but not new. There is a reason prostitution is called the "oldest profession".
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Helium



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sat Dec 29, 2007 1:01 am

Very interesting thread.
What I can say is that I agree with Averroes is that not too many parents, including me, would be proud of their kid being in the sex trade/porn industry.

And so AVerroes is right of course. That is a good test.

I'm still mulling over the implications.
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Helium



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sat Dec 29, 2007 1:15 am

Other observations.
I think the title of this string Marriage should give way to monogamy. Marriage is a sub-folder of monogamy.

If I was an alien to the earth studying the issue, I would ask for a study on the issue that would basically include on overview of the sex drive.

Basically we would find it absent in plants so we woulnd't consider them.

Then in the animal branch we would find that the sex drive is inherent in all animals, is it not? Is there an animal that does not have the benefit of the sexual fulfillment?

I think I would quickly conclude that it is involved in reproduction (although I guess it actually took a while for ancestors to put two and two together did it not?

So I guess you could say they are inextricably linked.

I guess next I would want to find out then how the sex drive is linked with reproduction, and the varioius forms it takes.

I guess I would soon learn there are really only a limited number of options.

1) animals that have sex; offspring born. Offspring fully functional and have no further need nor do they ever meet their parents. And if they did, they might very well try to eat each other.

2) animals that have sex; offspring born. Limited care required by A) either one parent; or B) both parents. But then after the limited care, at some point, the umbilical chord is metaphorically cut and there is no relationship

3) animals that have sex, offspring born. Care required by one or two parents. Relationship of parent/child is recognized throughout life.

Does this cover all the bases?

Humans then would fit into 3.

And this has already been commented on in this string which has been noted by AVerroes that our information is almost all passed on in an exterior fashion (that is not through genes, but through information) and the inordinate amount of care required to nuture a human. Indeed some of us never grow up Embarassed Cheers!
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sat Dec 29, 2007 10:33 pm

I just wanted to bring up a point that I thought was relevant to this discussion and that is the difference between ethics and morals.

Morals are a personal and cultural construct. In other words morals are subjectively and inter-subjectively based. They deal with what actions are considered good and/or bad for our culture or group. IMO morals do not fall under the oversight of government (a societal system), but instead fall under the oversight of culture, community, and personal beliefs.

Ethics on the other hand are a societal and systems based construct. In other words, ethics are objectively and inter-objectively based. They deal with what actions are good and/or bad for society. Ethics absolutely fall under the domain and oversight of societal government.

Now, in modern society, most things that are considered immoral are also considered unethical (such as murder for instance). As a matter of fact in most cases, morals stem from people's interpretations of what is ethical.

However there are certain situations where there is "cultural lag" and morals trail behind ethics. I think that perhaps prostitution is one of these examples. There was a time when prostitution posed a major threat to the overall health of society (and still does in many communities and societies), however in a stable and modern society and with proper governmental oversight, prostitution offers very little threat to the health of society and therefore can be considered to be ethical. This still doesn't remove the stigma of prostitution however and in most cases it's still considered to be immoral even in modern societies.

I think that this line of comparison and contrast between ethics (which should fall under the umbrella of laws and regulations) and morals (which shouldn't necessarily) could be extended to such things as the legalization of some or perhaps even all drugs, gun control issues, abortion, same sex marriage, etc...

Any thoughts?

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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sat Dec 29, 2007 10:48 pm

Helium wrote:
Other observations.
I think the title of this string Marriage should give way to monogamy. Marriage is a sub-folder of monogamy.

That's not necessarily the case. Many pre-traditional cultures practice marital polygyny (one man having more than one wife) or even polyandry (one woman having more than one husband). There is no objective link between monogamy and marriage.

Helium wrote:
Basically we would find it absent in plants so we wouldn't consider them.

Also not the case. Sex drive is actually nothing but the urge to reproduce. Even the most basic single celled organisms possess this attribute.

Helium wrote:
And this has already been commented on in this string which has been noted by AVerroes that our information is almost all passed on in an exterior fashion (that is not through genes, but through information) and the inordinate amount of care required to nuture a human. Indeed some of us never grow up Embarassed Cheers!

That's the old nature vs. nurture debate and I'm not sure that I agree with Averroes on that point. There have been several studies of twins separated at birth that show remarkable similarities in personality, temperament, personal tastes, and career and personal achievements. No doubt, culture plays a large role in our personal development, however our genes also play a large role in guiding us toward the choices that we make in our lives.

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Helium



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sun Dec 30, 2007 3:08 am

Basically you've disagreed with everything I said.

Wait a minute, that's my role, isn't it! lol! Cheers!
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sun Dec 30, 2007 3:16 am

Okay, where was I.

Oh yes, let me summarize.

Averroes believes one should never imbibe and no doubt I'm part of his reasoning. lol! Cheers!

And I think he is using the same logic to suggest that promiscuity is to sexual sobriety what alchohol is to sobriety.

But at the same time he is conflicted that the end result of alcohol and sexual sobriety, which SHOULD lead to better and more perfect parents - in fact may not be the absolute perfect paradigm.

Ah, like I said, an interesting thread.

Can't wait for us to sort it out.

But one observation I will add.

Is that the trump card is ...

Love. cheers


Last edited by on Sun Dec 30, 2007 3:31 am; edited 1 time in total
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Helium



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sun Dec 30, 2007 3:29 am

Really what Averroes overriding question is, is what is a healthy sexuality insofar as the individual is concerned and in so far as the society as a whole is concerned.

And the nuances are ...

What role does monogamy play in this (and not marriage as Aaron correctly pointed out) ...

And what enforcing role, if any, would society and/or government have in this?

And my apologies if I'm erroneously summing up an incorrect agenda.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sun Dec 30, 2007 11:51 am

What role does society have in the relationships of consenting adults who keep it private? None. Sexual health is an individual choice. An open marriage, for instance, could be heaven on earth for some, but hell itself for others. It's not for society to dictate sexual health.
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Helium



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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sun Dec 30, 2007 3:32 pm

Quote :
What role does society have in the relationships of consenting adults who keep it private? None. Sexual health is an individual choice. An open marriage, for instance, could be heaven on earth for some, but hell itself for others. It's not for society to dictate sexual health.

Yes that is a good point, Paineful. I think most of us would agree with that.

So the question is then ... what is the preferred relationship, if any, in which the upbringing of offspring and the fulfillment of sexual desires can be obtained?

I believe Averroes is formulating that a healthy sexual relationship is one that is expressed pretty well exclusively within a monogomous relationship, and that exteriour expression of sexuality, I suppose, would be limited to modest levels, just as our food appetites should be limited to modest levels, for the good of us all.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sun Dec 30, 2007 4:00 pm

Paineful wrote:
What role does society have in the relationships of consenting adults who keep it private? None. Sexual health is an individual choice. An open marriage, for instance, could be heaven on earth for some, but hell itself for others. It's not for society to dictate sexual health.

I believe that Helium and I are on the same page with the perplexity of the question. I don't think the question is merely that of esthetics; and we are not making it into a legal/political issue either, for now at least.

And that is why I've been trying to focus the attention on one's respective children. Surely, you won't satisfy their curiosity (and it won't be good parenting either) if you shrugged aside their questions about proper sexual behavior, by telling them to do what they must--unless your position is that all sexual behavior (excluding violence or fraud) is beneficial for the wellbeing of the society.

For instance, we all teach our children to be polite to people (actually, I think some people do encourage their children into being rude little brutes) and if you ask me, I'd say that enculturation of proper manners and etiquettes is a necessary part of a child's education, and if asked by my child I'd justify why such behavior is necessary for the well being of a society.

The same goes for sexual behavior. I think it is incorrect to simply brush it off. In ethics, we're working under the assumption that if no one was forced into any actions, then what is the most effective way of dealing with a situation and how would you go about justifying any deviation from it.

Now clearly, there will be exceptions to the rule, and I think we all ought to learn to respect alternative lifestyles. However, it is my opinion respecting all lifestyles is not the same as accepting them as proper alternative. And so when you make statements about the propriety of promiscuity but the impropriety of prostitution, I'd ask why? Where are you drawing the line and based upon what harmful consequences.

In my mind I can easily quench any fear of disease or the law, but what I cannot relieve myself of is the anxiety over the greater societal issue, which I've stated as the argument that promiscuity is much like prostitution and the net harm for such a lifestyle is the detachment of sexuality from intimacy which then leads towards a (dangerous) decline in reproduction, lack of commitment of parents (especially fathers) towards their children's enculturation, and most of all sexual promiscuity does seem to affect people's character negatively where compassion, nurture, and commitment to friends and family is often substituted with agression and rivalry.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Sun Dec 30, 2007 4:26 pm

Helium wrote:
I believe Averroes is formulating that a healthy sexual relationship is one that is expressed pretty well exclusively within a monogomous relationship, and that exteriour expression of sexuality, I suppose, would be limited to modest levels, just as our food appetites should be limited to modest levels, for the good of us all.


I agree with everything you stated, but I'd like to make a comment on the issue of dietary health.

In my opinion, healthy diet is not an ethical issue, nor is it an issue of morality or legality. Or if it is, it is not highup on the agenda. And the reason is that effects of ones eathing habits are largely confined (in terms of their harms and benefits) to the individual themselves. Smoking is probably a more dangerous activity than obesity, but then (not counting the health effects of second hand smoke) in my opinion these are harms that mostly confined to an individual and do not necessarily translate into an inability of a personal to properly work within a society--unless of course, they really go off the wall.

To me, eathing more or smoking more, is kinda like making a decision whether to spend all you money on designer label or working in a coal mine. I don't want to do either, but I respect and accept other people's right to do so, as long as they take personal responsibility for it. Working as a police officer might get you killed, but that is your choice of lifestyle and it is your responsibility, without much concern for the greater good.

The more appropriate comparison is between sexual promiscuity and drug/alcohol abuse. And for the sake of further clarification, I do not discriminate between a drug dealer or a clerk at 7/11 selling alcohol. They are both drug dealers working hard to sell drugs to consumers for personal recreation. This is the exact same relationship between promiscuous men and women who are just like prostitutes and their customers.

Now, the problem that I have with both drug and sex abuse, is that I recognize that these lead towards a certain kind of personality traits we, as a society, would be much better off without. Drugs and alcohol aside, if you want to understand how promiscuity affects ones character then just read about SAA (sexual addicts anonymous) or CoSA (codependents of sexual addicts). For instance, the personalites of the women in Sex and the City is classic that of sexual addicts and the kind of narcissitic demeaning lives that such people live.
Just contrast that to the lifestyle that is presented in the Bill Cosby Show--meaningfull and almost spiritual without any mention of God.

Besides, I think everyone can agree that sexual promiscuity and alcohol/drugs go hand in hand. Just go to a bar or a club and see the effects of it. So it is only rational to conlcude that the abuses of both these would have a correlation to each other. And indeed, it is common knowledge for those who treat alcoholics that often times the treatment does not work for them because they have deeper issue of sexual problems (usually pertinent to incest, lack of parental nurture or constant quarrell between parents, and the reliance of either one or both the parents on their chidren for emotional support and thereby robbing them of their carefree childhood) that leads them into a spiral of sexual/drug addiction or codependency--my source is a great book called Women, Sex, and Addiction. It is mostly this book rather than my own cultural upbringing from which I've forwarded most of my arguments.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Mon Dec 31, 2007 2:12 am

Well among the the things you're right about Averroes is complexity.

For instance, take women's breasts.

Let's strictly speaking follow your rationale. In theory, they have no bearing on reproduction; their function is strictly limited to sustaining of newborn life, right.

I mean if breasts of all women in the world were deflated overnight, it would not affect reproduction.

Yet, most would agree they are considered sex organs. In fact, they are a second set of sex organs. Perhaps a secondary sex organ. And they have been known to get erect. But toes also get curled and they don't have to be obscured because of that fact Cheers! Embarassed

Whereas the primary sex organs in men and women are obvious.

And I don't even want to get into what would be considered the third one for women and secondary for men. I just don't want to go there cause it would be a real bummer. lol! Embarassed

So what's my point.

Oh yes.

I think I had a mischevous point.

And that is.

That in a very Victorian, fundamentalist, extremist society, that breasts, because they are so hidden, so kept under locks, are part of the whole sexual taboo.

And therefore such societies must keep them under wraps, carefully showing no form, shape and definitely no exposure so as that the potential leeering male not be put of kilter with "impure" thoughts.

But I don't know. Humans are actually the only animal that covers its primary sexual organs and the secondary organs (and the third option - ugh lol! Embarassed ).

But just as a devil's advocate here, not even knowing where I'm going with this, I ask you AVerroes, sir, is the preservation of our society, and all the good that we have managed to create, is it so dependent, should it be so dependent, on the concealment of women's breasts?

And are their not societies, usually those considered "primitive", for instance, where bare breasts are "natural".

Apprently in these "primitive"societies the responsibility for libido control of men, is, ummm, somewhat shifted on to the men???

Oh yes, on my third edit of this thing, I realize I do have a point.

That promiscuity, say in the Victorian/fundamentalist/Islamic would be different than in that so-called "primitive society".

So, for instance, if you plucked a person from the Victorian/fundamentalist/Islamic society, and for the sake of my argument one that would be considered to be a solid, good member of society, he would be shocked at Much Music, for instance, adn consider many of the videos to be pornographic.

Yet if you plucked a person from the so called "primitive" society of my argument, he would just consider it to be silly.

So do you see here how two honourable people, such as yourself is, could have completely different perceptions of what promiscuity is.

One person's promiscuity/porongraphy would be another person's immature adolescent silliness.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Mon Dec 31, 2007 5:58 am

Helium wrote:
Yet, most would agree they are considered sex organs. In fact, they are a second set of sex organs. Perhaps a secondary sex organ. And they have been known to get erect. But toes also get curled and they don't have to be obscured because of that fact

Yes, both men and women have primary and secondary sex organs. Primary sex organs are clearly the reproductive organs. The secondary sex organs are the erogenous zones, primarily the lips and nipples of men and women (human males are the only males in animal kingdom that have nipples on their chest), but also the ear lobe, elbow joints etc. (that have a lot of nerve endings attached to the skin) and the anus as well, although, I would think that it is void of much sensory nerves.

It is my conjecture that the reason why the earliest humans, living in the savannah, would've wanted to cover their penis is because no one wanted to publically demonstrate that they were attracted to someone else's wife, mother, sister, or daughter. I don't think a host would've appreciated seeing an erection on his guest just when a female member of his household walked by. cyclops No

Helium wrote:
is the preservation of our society, and all the good that we have managed to create, is it so dependent, should it be so dependent, on the concealment of women's breasts?

Heavens no! As a Libertarian I believe in the right of complete public nudity. Only on private property, whether a mall or someone's residence, can individuals or groups dictate the dress attire.

Also, I do not associate nudity with promiscuity. And it is my opinion that men (at least I am) more attracted to women partially nude then when there is nothing left for imagination. Consider why women go through such pains of hiding their breasts and hips while also barely covering them and leaving men to want a bit more.... Seriously, it is so stupid that it is almost incredible. I live by ASU campus, probably on of the most promiscuous college campus in United States, and it is really exciting to see young women walking in bare minimum--wearing skin tight and excessively short skirts, such that if you bend a bit you could tell whether or not they're wearing an underwear--and constantly struggling to pull down their skirts to cover their modesty and then pull up the skirt to hide the cleavage of their buttocks sunny Thank God for Arizona's sunshine. A friend of mine simply referred to such women as "tease;" especially considering that some of them, in addition to such revealing clothes, also have a boldfaced bright pink/red JUICY printed on their skin tight excessively short shorts. (It is obvious that my vocabulary is at bare minimum when it comes to the various names of these different kinds of clothings; what can I say, I do my shopping at Walmart and all I know is that there are shoes, socks, underwears, T-shirts, shirts, trousers, and belts--that is all I know about clothes).

But on a more serious note: While I remain nightmarishly uncomfortable at the thought of seeing my parents naked, in principle I recognize that such prudery is merely a byproduct of my enculturation and the phobias that I've internalized during my infancy. I remember when I was very young, my mother and one of my aunts were giving me and a girl cousin of mine a bath. They were both having a conversation when suddenly they stopped dead amid-sentence when I asked my mother why doesn't my cousin have a penis like me pale Man, a second later I got a smack across my backhead and my aunt immediately began to cover her daugher up with a towel. That was the last time I ever saw a vagina until high school wherein our biology text we saw the internal structure of the sex organs. I knew more about the structure of ovaries then the outside shape of a vagina until of course I saw my first porn--they were called blueprints. Very Happy

Helium wrote:
That promiscuity, say in the Victorian/fundamentalist/Islamic would be different than in that so-called "primitive society".

So, for instance, if you plucked a person from the Victorian/fundamentalist/Islamic society, and for the sake of my argument one that would be considered to be a solid, good member of society, he would be shocked at Much Music, for instance, adn consider many of the videos to be pornographic.

Yet if you plucked a person from the so called "primitive" society of my argument, he would just consider it to be silly.

So do you see here how two honourable people, such as yourself is, could have completely different perceptions of what promiscuity is.

One person's promiscuity/porongraphy would be another person's immature adolescent silliness.

That is true. Clearly, for a lot of Muslims, even some living in the West, dating is considered immodest without a chaparon. Some of my friends, who are looking to get married, have been on dates where a brother or an aunt of the girl acts as a chaparon. It's really funny. But so far no such "date" has every resulted in a marriage proposal. Mostly folks get married either through match makers (could be religious or social orgnaization or mostly experienced "aunties") that arrange marriages based upon mutual compatability criteria such as family background, income level, profession etc. etc. Of course, I've completely cut myself off from such frivolities on account of my religious (sacriligous) beliefs. My friends often ask me just shutup about my lack of faith etc. and simply get married and then do what I please. Needless to say that violates my strict moral adherence to synergy and honesty, not to mention that I'm a deeply religious man and I'll resist sending my children to any Sunday schools attached to a mosque. I reserve the right to brainwash them into my religion and then they can do what they must when they are financially independent of my support. (I'm currently working on a Deist Heritage Bible that I'd like to regularly read and discuss with my future children, every Sunday, like my father used to do with me every Friday, which is a weekend in the Muslim world).

But you're correct in observing that different cultures have different standards of modesty. However, given my libertarian politics, and given my beliefs in consequentialist/utilitarian ethics, I'd say that perhaps we can comeup with some sort of consensus that'll holdup to rational scrutiny. What that golden means may be, I'm not certain of it, as of yet... confused
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Mon Dec 31, 2007 10:44 am

Averroes wrote:

In my mind I can easily quench any fear of disease or the law, but what I cannot relieve myself of is the anxiety over the greater societal issue, which I've stated as the argument that promiscuity is much like prostitution and the net harm for such a lifestyle is the detachment of sexuality from intimacy which then leads towards a (dangerous) decline in reproduction, lack of commitment of parents (especially fathers) towards their children's enculturation, and most of all sexual promiscuity does seem to affect people's character negatively where compassion, nurture, and commitment to friends and family is often substituted with agression and rivalry.

First I see no inherent immorality in prostitution. But like any enabling behavior, it is up to the user to use it responsibly. Like drugs, the problem is mostly brought on by its illegality, which obviously doesn't stop the behavior, it just brings a lot of it down into the gutter and in doing so supports the infrastructure for truly immoral corruption and criminal actions.

Again, the only problem I see is the children. But someone incapable of sexual intimacy, or parents in an open marriage, could still be good parents. My wish would be to have social pressure brought to bare on commitment to marriage and the family for the sake of the children, condemning easy divorce if children are involved. In fact, a case could be made that a couple should only be engaged until they conceive or jointly adopt children, at which point they then become married. Yes, I can foresee problems (few that are insurmountable), but there is no universal model for marriage that's bulletproof.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Tue Jan 01, 2008 1:00 am

Paineful Truth wrote:
the only problem I see is the children. But someone incapable of sexual intimacy, or parents in an open marriage, could still be good parents. My wish would be to have social pressure brought to bare on commitment to marriage and the family for the sake of the children, condemning easy divorce if children are involved. In fact, a case could be made that a couple should only be engaged until they conceive or jointly adopt children, at which point they then become married. Yes, I can foresee problems (few that are insurmountable), but there is no universal model for marriage that's bulletproof.

My sentiments exactly. I think I can accept this statement as what I believe in, for now. However, I still would like you to answer the question directly: Would you actively dissuade your own daughter (say, 21 yrs. old) from becomming a prostitute or a stripper and paying here way through college--and lets just assume that there are no threats of violence or legality involved?
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Tue Jan 01, 2008 4:55 am

Averros, I think we can accept as fact that no one, but no one, would want of their progeny being in the sex industry in any capacity whether it be prostitue or porn star.


So, with that proven many times over, you can get on to your point.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Tue Jan 01, 2008 8:45 pm

Helium wrote:
Averros, I think we can accept as fact that no one, but no one, would want of their progeny being in the sex industry in any capacity whether it be prostitue or porn star.


So, with that proven many times over, you can get on to your point.

But why not? My point is that if we accept promiscuity as normal, if we accept that there is nothing wrong with either ourselves or our children if we or they were to have casual sex with a stranger (whether regularly or once in a while) without the intent of getting to know them or fostering a relationship with them, then why do we object to sex trade?

Don't you see the double standard? Now maybe you've modified your position on the subject, and I know that Gnomon has stated his affirmation of modesty/moderation, which is abstinence from promiscuity, but neither Paul, nor Paineful Truth, nor anyone else has accepted that promiscuity is wrong, so then why draw the line on prostitution? It is like your question on gun control: How does a libertarian get to draw the line on private possesion of nuclear weaspons--I can answer that in another thread, but I brought it up just to show the relevance of my question: We all feel that prostitution is wrong, but then how do we discriminate between promiscuity and prostitution?


NOTE: Please, I want to clarify that I do not mean to disrespect anyone with such personally stated questions. It's just that I've been wondering about this for sometime and I think that the issue of marriage, since it involves creation of a family and the upbringing of children, is intricately tied to promiscuity; and one of hte forms of promiscuity is prostitution.

I also want to clarify, again, that I do not consider promiscuity to be a moral wrong, merely something unwise and unethical from a consequentialist point of view. That is, while I not agree with the argument, I appreciate the gravity of it, when it is stated that promiscuity is detrimental to family.
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Tue Jan 01, 2008 10:11 pm

Averroes wrote:
We all feel that prostitution is wrong, but then how do we discriminate between promiscuity and prostitution?

This is the perennial dilemma in a free and open society: how do we draw the line between personal opinion and public policy? Majority rule is the easy way, but is often unfair to minorities. So the democratic solution is public debate and, hopefully, a meeting of minds, not in the exact middle, but in a compromising position.

Yuk! It sounds pretty bad when I put it that way. scratch
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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Marriage   Wed Jan 02, 2008 10:16 am

Gnomon wrote:
Averroes wrote:
We all feel that prostitution is wrong, but then how do we discriminate between promiscuity and prostitution?

This is the perennial dilemma in a free and open society: how do we draw the line between personal opinion and public policy? Majority rule is the easy way, but is often unfair to minorities. So the democratic solution is public debate and, hopefully, a meeting of minds, not in the exact middle, but in a compromising position.

Yuk! It sounds pretty bad when I put it that way. scratch

Sounds like dialectics to me. Smile

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