Tuesday, November 18, 2008

חן הבתולות

בעבר, בתקופות בהם היה הנייר יקר יותר, כשהיו מדפיסי הסידורים נתקלים בתופעה שבסופו של דבר דף או שניים היו מיותרים בסוף כריכת הסידור, היו מדפיסים באותם הדפים דבר קצר "לזכות את הרבים" (כגון ברכת המזון הקצר) בטענתם "כדי לא להשאיר את הדף ריקם". ..אף אני בדרכיהם אלך ו"לא אשאיר את הדף ריקם"!י; I've gotten into the habit of writing fairly often here (if one were to compare my current pace with that of last years, I seem to be writing a lot more). In recent days I've contemplated many things worth putting attention to, but, alas, they merrily skipped from my mind as they entered.. But anyway, this blog, for me, is not as much about fleeting ideas as it is about things that are on my mind for somewhat of a significant period. ...one reason not much has been on my mind is of course due to the half-term exams at my University, and my perpetual depression (which at times affects my creative faculties in a negative way)..

One thing that's been trodding about in my mind in various forms now and then the past few days is something which takes up a great place in my mind, but very little in my speech or actions- and that is the nature of the relationship between males and females in our society..

One thing that originally came to my mind was the ..lack of logic entailed in the enchantment men have for women, and the ..interest women have in men. ..I recall Avigdor Miller once mentioning "to a male rat there's nothing more beautiful than a female rat". ..what I mean to say is that we give such a large amount of our strength and energy seeking the favor of members of the opposite sex, while in the meantime they're no different from ourselves, and the only reason we find any attraction in them is solely because of a few chemicals that flow through our bodies. ..we all know that.. and yet we perch these people (of the 'other gender') in such a pedestal in our minds that we let our minds and actions be affected by them. ..I say this with a bit of wonder because I myself used to care much less about peoples opinions abut myself, and now there's a part of my mind that always thinks "what will [whoever] think". ...*sigh*
(It's been a few days since I actually thought this, and the message I'm trying to convey might be a bit vague)...

Another idea I aprehended while crossing my mind was that any possible notion of 'romance' that we might have is a creation of our minds (and yet, again, much thought and emotion are sacrificed to this creation of ours. But, like a malevolent god, it is never quite appeased). I once quoted here psychological research to prove the opposite, but I don't believe it.. ..the whole concept is obviously just an extension of our imaginations, mimicking what we've seen from the American Film and Television industries.. ....is it not?

14 comments:

mishmum said...

hmmm...

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

This idea could and should be edited to no end by the way..such an important concept...

The Babysitter said...

I understand exactly what you were saying. I was actually going to post about this some time. It's too long for me to comment on, and I have to organize my thoughts first.

About the romance part. It depends.
It goes like this. 1- there's no such a thing as love at first sight. 2- the media does have an affect on us, thinking we can just "fall in love" when really there's no such a thing, it doesn't just suddenly happen. Like anything in life in order to enjoy something you have to put in effort. If it comes easy then it's infatuation and not real. Actually R' Weinberg wrote about this in his article the 5 levels of pleasure.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Oh finally, a sympathetic ear!

About romance: I'm aware of the variety of ideas regarding the subject, but I'll make sure to look into Rav Weinbergs writings with a critical eye..

"Like anything in life in order to enjoy something you have to put in effort"- So what 'effort' is there in 'shidduch dating'? (!)

The Babysitter said...

Your welcome,

well not so much in the shidduch dating, but love comes later, after marriage. Or perhaps even after engagement, when you have to start planning for the wedding, I imagine that's a lot of work.

Rachel said...

"lack of logic entailed in the enchantment men have for women, and the ..interest women have in men"
--- Professor in class today gave three different types of "courtly love" in the middle ages in order to connect it to the worldview of the chassidei Ashkenaz and the conception of kiddush Hashem (okay, right, I realize that probably sounds weird). And I say all this to you just to say that what you say here reminds me of one of his points about this lack of logic in love of a knight for a girl he doesn't even know, which was somewhat like witchcraft. (Okay, I realize that also sounds weird out of context. Actually, it was weird in context too. Whatever, point is that what you say reminded me of that.)

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

babysitter: Yeah, well that sucks man- marrying someone you don't (yet) love. Not the ideal way of going about things in my mind..

rachel: See, the funny thing about your situation is, I don't know where you go to college, but it seems to have a huge niche for people interested in Jewish stuff. So, in essense, not only doesn't it matter if you went to 'Seminary', I would in fact say that to a large extent you're learning more about (the societal aspects of) Judaism than people in yeshivah (though much less 'actual' Torah obviously). I said before and I'll say again that I'm envious of you for having such obscure areas of Jewish history and culture speled out to you in a college classroom.

But to comment: Yeah, the bible actually promugates the idea of 'loving' the Divine. There are even those of the opinion that the 'Song of Solomon' mentioned here not long ago is actually a metaphor for Man's love for G-d (I obviously count myself among those who opine such).

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

I mean, like, part of the reason why I put up this post was to perhaps be a springboard for me to new ideas on the subject.

One thing that smacks of the Reformation and that would make any Monk start to ponder, is the old Muslim adage that "one cannot atempt to understand love for G-d if one has yet to understand love for a woman"! From what I remember this was told by a teacher to a student when he came to learn theology. He told him to come back after he had wed.

Ms. Babysitter said not long ago that when she was taught Shir Hashirim the teacher (and/or Artscroll) replaced all the romantic verses for religious ones, as a sort of 'censoring' of the bible. I don't want to get too into this subject (of which I have deep feelings), but just want to quote Morekhai Gifter (Telz Rosh Yeshiva) as having said that understanding it the 'real' way is a prerequisite to understanding t the 'right' way...

The Babysitter said...

Shlomo: well I'm not saying there can't be love before marriage. Just that true love happens afterwards. Or something like that. You obviously don't marry a person from the street then hope that love comes after marriage. You marry someone who has the potential of someone you can love.

The Babysitter said...

Shlomo: and that's an interesting way of putting it, in that case I would agree with you and say it's probably better to read it in the origonal way.

I remember learning that we have things down here so that we can learn how to have a relationship with Hashem. That we have parents to know to treat Hashem like a father, and a husband, because he's our husband.

Rachel said...

This in no way substitutes for seminary. Not that I'm endorsing one over the other.

Plus, some of the professors so frequently misunderstand orthodoxy that it makes me wonder how accurate the other things are that I am taught....

(Besides, what's to envy? You know more about these "obscure areas of Jewish history" than I or anyone else I know do.)

The Babysitter said...

Rachel: So your seminary age?

Rachel said...

Nope.

The Babysitter said...

didn't think so...