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Marriage, Sexuality, and Premarital Sex

 
Quadrewple
 
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Quadrewple
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01 March 2020 09:50
 

Sadghuru on Premarital Sex

I had to share this because it’s the best wisdom I’ve ever heard on the topic of sex and marriage.

Our conversations around sexuality in today’s society seem to be dominated by either traditional dogma or anti-traditional viewpoints.  This is one of the few times I’ve heard something that just makes sense.

 
 
Twissel
 
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01 March 2020 10:50
 

How about a summary?

 
 
GAD
 
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01 March 2020 11:36
 
Twissel - 01 March 2020 10:50 AM

How about a summary?

Folk wisdom based on observation…

In nature all that matters about sex is procreation, everything else is a human invention to ritualize and control sexuality, it’s subjective and amounts to philosophy i.e there is no objective answer, just opinion.

 
 
Twissel
 
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01 March 2020 12:05
 

Thanks!

 
 
Quadrewple
 
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01 March 2020 12:20
 
Twissel - 01 March 2020 10:50 AM

How about a summary?

It’s not that long of a video but….

The benefit to people being married young is that you do not have the angst of finding a sexual and/or romantic partner constantly in the back of your mind, the way it is for people in Western society today, wherein people live with this angst well into their 30’s and 40’s.  This angst comes at a cost.  There are costs to marrying the wrong person, but there are also costs to have one’s mind and body wandering for decades because there is no stable partner.

There are traditional cultural practices which make the transition into puberty and adult sexuality more seamless and less chaotic for those involved, such as discussing marriage between children well before they are old enough to make the choice.

The modern anti-traditionalists seem to be afraid to admit that there may be better ways to deal with human sexuality than 100% freedom.  This does not mean the way traditions play out are without flaw, but it also doesn’t mean that

And Sadhguru’s final point is that to overthrow a tradition is irresponsible unless what takes its place is somehow better.  Can we find examples of the way we treat sexuality in the Western world working out well?  Sure.  But I, as well as many others, fail to see why the way we treat romance, sexuality, promiscuity, and marriage is touted as being so superior to the way things tend to be done in traditional cultures. 

What is this so-called superiority based on?  It’s largely based on this concept of freedom.  But in real life, we trade freedom for stability all the time.  And which ways of treating romance and voluntary sexuality actually lead to the most happiness in the people involved?  Or lead to the least misery for most people?  After all, if we’re a society that doesn’t value marriage, that affects the way we raise our kids.

I don’t have the answer, but our society certainly hasn’t built a cultural infrastructure around sexual freedom in the last 60-70 years, so even if we’re operating on the correct principles, the way every thing plays out is messy and creates enormous tension because it is still in a stage of chaos.  If society is operating based on the idea that most people will prefer to have a husband/wife, then we influence the kids in that direction, even if some kids end up not choosing to go that direction.  If society is operating based on the idea that children shouldn’t be influenced in any direction regarding marriage, then the children have STILL been influenced by that mentality…..there is no possible system that takes into account every human being’s eventual desires.

Regardless, if you’re too lazy to watch the video then don’t bother responding to me.  This is a paint-by-numbers version of what he discusses in the video.

 
 
icehorse
 
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icehorse
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04 March 2020 08:49
 

This feels like a philosophy discussion to me. No worries.

I would recommend “Why the West is Best” by apostate Ibn Warraq. He lists the following as creations of the West:

- rationalism
- self-criticism
- joy of discovery
- secularism
- the rule of law
- freedom of conscience and expression
- human rights
- liberal democracy

I would call these core values. So it seems to me that the OP is - under the covers - questioning this set of values, correct?

 
 
Antisocialdarwinist
 
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Antisocialdarwinist
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04 March 2020 16:56
 
Quadrewple - 01 March 2020 12:20 PM
Twissel - 01 March 2020 10:50 AM

How about a summary?

It’s not that long of a video but….

The benefit to people being married young is that you do not have the angst of finding a sexual and/or romantic partner constantly in the back of your mind, the way it is for people in Western society today, wherein people live with this angst well into their 30’s and 40’s.  This angst comes at a cost.  There are costs to marrying the wrong person, but there are also costs to have one’s mind and body wandering for decades because there is no stable partner.

There are traditional cultural practices which make the transition into puberty and adult sexuality more seamless and less chaotic for those involved, such as discussing marriage between children well before they are old enough to make the choice.

The modern anti-traditionalists seem to be afraid to admit that there may be better ways to deal with human sexuality than 100% freedom.  This does not mean the way traditions play out are without flaw, but it also doesn’t mean that

And Sadhguru’s final point is that to overthrow a tradition is irresponsible unless what takes its place is somehow better.  Can we find examples of the way we treat sexuality in the Western world working out well?  Sure.  But I, as well as many others, fail to see why the way we treat romance, sexuality, promiscuity, and marriage is touted as being so superior to the way things tend to be done in traditional cultures. 

What is this so-called superiority based on?  It’s largely based on this concept of freedom.  But in real life, we trade freedom for stability all the time.  And which ways of treating romance and voluntary sexuality actually lead to the most happiness in the people involved?  Or lead to the least misery for most people?  After all, if we’re a society that doesn’t value marriage, that affects the way we raise our kids.

I don’t have the answer, but our society certainly hasn’t built a cultural infrastructure around sexual freedom in the last 60-70 years, so even if we’re operating on the correct principles, the way every thing plays out is messy and creates enormous tension because it is still in a stage of chaos.  If society is operating based on the idea that most people will prefer to have a husband/wife, then we influence the kids in that direction, even if some kids end up not choosing to go that direction.  If society is operating based on the idea that children shouldn’t be influenced in any direction regarding marriage, then the children have STILL been influenced by that mentality…..there is no possible system that takes into account every human being’s eventual desires.

Regardless, if you’re too lazy to watch the video then don’t bother responding to me.  This is a paint-by-numbers version of what he discusses in the video.

Too lazy to watch it, but regardless, your summary makes me think that the general idea is this: left to their own devices, people will usually choose short term gratification over long term well being. Tradition and morality act as a disincentive to choosing short term gratification by eliciting negative emotions like guilt or shame. Thereby causing people to act in their own long term best interest, even if in the short term they feel oppressed.

That’s obviously not true of all traditions and morals, or for all people. But it seems to me that some of them do make sense for most people.

 
 
Quadrewple
 
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04 March 2020 21:30
 
icehorse - 04 March 2020 08:49 AM

This feels like a philosophy discussion to me. No worries.

- rationalism
- self-criticism
- joy of discovery
- secularism
- the rule of law
- freedom of conscience and expression
- human rights
- liberal democracy

I would call these core values. So it seems to me that the OP is - under the covers - questioning this set of values, correct?

Let’s break this down.

I’m not questioning liberal democracy as much as I’m questioning liberal culture.  It seems to me there is a thin line between refusing to influence one’s children towards the direction most adults eventually go in (life partner) and simply not preparing them for what their future is likely to hold.

So let’s take casual sex for example.  Is the social acceptability of casual sex more or less compatible with a stable family unit, which itself is one of the greatest bulwarks against child poverty?  Does that hit of oxytocin and other hormones that bond people together flow as strongly for the 5 or 6th sexual partner as it does for the first and second?  I’m not claiming that traditional cultures understand the science of this (because it hasn’t even been studied properly here), but that’s not really relevant to my overall point.

You can also look at this from a purely utilitarian standpoint.  Almost every person agrees that we should teach children manners - however this has nothing to do with morality.  Neither does the cultural restriction or non-restriction of consensual sex.  We’re talking aesthetics here, but in the realm of sex, the consequences of what we choose these aesthetics to be seems much more significant to me than Please and Thank You.

If we accept the teaching of manners to children, there is no reason in principle to dismiss the restriction of sex as a topic to be seriously discussed.  We have a lot of religious baggage around the issue, but I am not discussing this from a religious point of view.

In other words, if the outcomes for the average person is better to have social restrictions on consensual sex, OR if the outcomes are better for children then appealing to “joy of expression” seems like a consolation prize for something much more valuable.  The same logic applies to any tradition we have around sex/courtship/dating.  These are points to be argued, but there seems to be an anti-traditionalist view in the liberal West which itself has become its own dogma, which prevents proper discussion from happening.

Why am I not discussing this with the religious people?  Partly because they’re harder to find and partly because they have their rules laid out right in front of them to reference back to.  If they believe their dogma, there’s not really much to discuss.  The modern liberal ways are decentralized, and thus slippery to define…...therefore the quality of outcomes these ideas produce are going to depend on debate on genuine discussion.

Antisocialdarwinist - 04 March 2020 04:56 PM

Tradition and morality act as a disincentive to choosing short term gratification by eliciting negative emotions like guilt or shame. Thereby causing people to act in their own long term best interest, even if in the short term they feel oppressed.

That’s obviously not true of all traditions and morals, or for all people. But it seems to me that some of them do make sense for most people.

Yes, the key word being most.  I think it’s possible to have many of the positive aspects of tradition without making stuff up about morality, and that there are more and less dignified (for lack of a better word) ways of influencing people than shame.  Moving in that direction seems like a big step up from where we are now - in this confused and wayward state.

 
 
Brick Bungalow
 
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Brick Bungalow
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05 March 2020 11:41
 

I think it makes a lot of sense. I believe there is a lot of utility in traditional arrangements.

What I need to point out is that the obstacle to common sense social solutions are not the outliers and rebels and alternative lifestyle enthusiasts. Not in general. The people with non traditional households generally, in my experience endorse the liberty of the individual to find their own path.

The obstacle are the people who are so enthused about tradition that they try and often succeed to make it law. Or otherwise strongarm people into situations that their natural constitution would not have gravitated toward naturally.

I’m open to the best arguments and the best solutions. A big reason why me and so many others of my generation shun tradition is because it was force fed to them. Stop doing this and I believe a lot more people would find it on their own.

 
unsmoked
 
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05 March 2020 11:59
 
GAD - 01 March 2020 11:36 AM
Twissel - 01 March 2020 10:50 AM

How about a summary?

Folk wisdom based on observation…

In nature all that matters about sex is procreation, everything else is a human invention to ritualize and control sexuality, it’s subjective and amounts to philosophy i.e there is no objective answer, just opinion.

To get a pair of new shoes we go to the store and try on different pairs.  If an aunt and uncle go to the store and buy them for you . . . is that a good idea?

Leave it to nature?  Some males find it easy to make their pupils expand and contract and don’t mind spending a year’s salary for a little stone.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1XkPeN3AWIE

Too much trouble?  She flew away?  Just let auntie and uncle buy the shoes?

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Antisocialdarwinist
 
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05 March 2020 14:25
 
Quadrewple - 04 March 2020 09:30 PM
Antisocialdarwinist - 04 March 2020 04:56 PM

Tradition and morality act as a disincentive to choosing short term gratification by eliciting negative emotions like guilt or shame. Thereby causing people to act in their own long term best interest, even if in the short term they feel oppressed.

That’s obviously not true of all traditions and morals, or for all people. But it seems to me that some of them do make sense for most people.

Yes, the key word being most.  I think it’s possible to have many of the positive aspects of tradition without making stuff up about morality, and that there are more and less dignified (for lack of a better word) ways of influencing people than shame.  Moving in that direction seems like a big step up from where we are now - in this confused and wayward state.

Keep in mind that the disincentive to choosing short term gratification has to outweigh the short term gratification itself. Shame is a powerful disincentive. What’s an example of a more “dignified” way of disincentivizing short term gratification?

 
 
icehorse
 
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05 March 2020 17:22
 

As with so many things, the approaches that the OP is describing can be placed on a continuum. It’s not a choice of EITHER we do arranged marriages for virgins OR we promote and encourage a total free-for-all.

I suspect that maximizing WBCC for humans has a sweet spot around “having a few sexual partners / relationships” before settling down. For one thing, there are skills associated with sex and with relationships, and throwing two noobs together is unlikely to maximize WBCC.

 
 
unsmoked
 
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06 March 2020 11:53
 
Quadrewple - 01 March 2020 09:50 AM

Sadghuru on Premarital Sex

I had to share this because it’s the best wisdom I’ve ever heard on the topic of sex and marriage.

Our conversations around sexuality in today’s society seem to be dominated by either traditional dogma or anti-traditional viewpoints.  This is one of the few times I’ve heard something that just makes sense.

One problem here is that the teacher looks like a guru.  If Joel Osteen grew a beard and started wearing a white robe I wonder how many of his 38,000 church members and millions of listeners would be embarrassed for him?

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-science-behind-behavior/201511/why-are-so-many-indian-arranged-marriages-successful

[ Edited: 06 March 2020 12:01 by unsmoked]
 
 
Quadrewple
 
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06 March 2020 20:50
 
Antisocialdarwinist - 05 March 2020 02:25 PM

Keep in mind that the disincentive to choosing short term gratification has to outweigh the short term gratification itself. Shame is a powerful disincentive. What’s an example of a more “dignified” way of disincentivizing short term gratification?

That’s true.  I suppose what I mean is that that the disincentive for a child to directly disobey what the parent recommends (after explaining why such recommendations are made) is related to the strength of the relationship between parent and child.

The thing is, most parents are too afraid to be honest about why they care what their children do in life.  It all comes down to selfishness.  If I had a teenage daughter that got knocked up, I would have two choices:  accept financial and emotional burden of providing for that child when she hadn’t done her part as a parent in securing a stable partner OR live knowing that the child is suffering neglect because I didn’t want to bail her out of her mess.  It’s a lose-lose situation for the grandparents.  How many parents who don’t want their children sexually active actually explain this in detail?  If it’s just a dogma it can generally work at preventing certain outcomes, but the only preventative measure other than that is open communication and a strong relationship between the parents and children. 

To just repeat dogma to children is to treat them as if they’re retarded.  There are many parents who treat their children as if they’re far stupider than they are.

The fact is that every risk we take in life impacts those we love.  At a certain point, it becomes narcissism to disregard what those we love think about the risks we take, because we’re putting them in the position where they have to either stand on the sidelines knowing that someone they love is suffering, or accept the burden of helping us when those risks bite back.

 
 
Antisocialdarwinist
 
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06 March 2020 22:11
 
Quadrewple - 06 March 2020 08:50 PM
Antisocialdarwinist - 05 March 2020 02:25 PM

Keep in mind that the disincentive to choosing short term gratification has to outweigh the short term gratification itself. Shame is a powerful disincentive. What’s an example of a more “dignified” way of disincentivizing short term gratification?

That’s true.  I suppose what I mean is that that the disincentive for a child to directly disobey what the parent recommends (after explaining why such recommendations are made) is related to the strength of the relationship between parent and child.

The thing is, most parents are too afraid to be honest about why they care what their children do in life.  It all comes down to selfishness.  If I had a teenage daughter that got knocked up, I would have two choices:  accept financial and emotional burden of providing for that child when she hadn’t done her part as a parent in securing a stable partner OR live knowing that the child is suffering neglect because I didn’t want to bail her out of her mess.  It’s a lose-lose situation for the grandparents.  How many parents who don’t want their children sexually active actually explain this in detail?  If it’s just a dogma it can generally work at preventing certain outcomes, but the only preventative measure other than that is open communication and a strong relationship between the parents and children. 

To just repeat dogma to children is to treat them as if they’re retarded.  There are many parents who treat their children as if they’re far stupider than they are.

The fact is that every risk we take in life impacts those we love.  At a certain point, it becomes narcissism to disregard what those we love think about the risks we take, because we’re putting them in the position where they have to either stand on the sidelines knowing that someone they love is suffering, or accept the burden of helping us when those risks bite back.

Yes, shaming your daughter after she gets knocked up out of wedlock is closing the barn door after the horse is out. But what about raising your daughter to be ashamed of getting knocked up out of wedlock? Is that what you mean by treating her as if she’s retarded? I don’t think most adolescents (or adults, for that matter) are capable of considering long term consequences when the opportunity for short term gratification presents itself. Research shows that human beings arrive at decisions “intuitively,” or impulsively (then rationalize those intuitive decisions after the fact, thereby creating the illusion of having arrived at the decision rationally). Therefore, it seems to me that disincentives will be most effective if they work at an intuitive, or emotional level: the very thought of getting knocked up out of wedlock elicits feelings of shame. The decision not to have sex (or not to have sex without a contraceptive) is just as impulsive as the converse, but driven by shame instead of desire.

Raising your daughter to be ashamed of getting knocked up out of wedlock, however, means making examples of women who do get knocked up out of wedlock, by condemning or shaming them. Which—as you point out—carries a cost of its own. Which is the greater cost? We as a society seem to have concluded—ironically, in my opinion—that the short term cost of shaming women who get knocked up out of wedlock is greater than the long term cost of more women getting knocked up out of wedlock.

Thank God (metaphorically, of course) for abortion.

 
 
icehorse
 
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07 March 2020 08:27
 

asd:

I don’t think most adolescents (or adults, for that matter) are capable of considering long term consequences when the opportunity for short term gratification presents itself.

Indeed.

asd:

The decision not to have sex (or not to have sex without a contraceptive) is just as impulsive as the converse, but driven by shame instead of desire.

Fear is a poor motivator. On the other hand, the passion to achieve mastery in a thing is an incredibly strong, lasting motivator. And mastery-adjacent behaviors are almost as good as motivators. For example, if a young woman has a passion for rock climbing, then she will also be steadily motivated to life weights because “that’s what rock climbers do”. And getting pregnant is NOT what rock climbers do.

 
 
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