Sunday 14 December 2008

Why the Individual SHOULD Strive to Reject Monogamy

It will be observed that I proselytise the principle of free love. Indeed, one commenter actually went so far as to allege I would FORCE it on people.

Actually, that's not quite correct.
I would say everyone should have the right to choose the lifestyle they desire.

HOWEVER. I do not think the state, or society should officially recognise any sort of unions, if people want to contract religious ceremonies bonding them all well and good, but I think the marital institution should not have any legal sanction.

Nor would I disrespect anyone's free choice to live in a monogamous committed relationship. Any more than I disrespect the right of any individual to CHOOSE to live chained in a box as a gimp, brought out only when the dominatrix says.

However, I believe that in a society where free love is permitted and is socially acceptable, the individual should be actively discouraged from seeking the monogamous lifestyle.

Well, it actually all comes back down to politics and power.

There seems to be little point in going out of ones way to design systems that prevent individuals establishing power over others, only then to have individuals masochistically decide to allow individuals power over them.

It goes back to the principle of separation of power. If all government is in the hands of one person, you have tyranny. Hence the principle of separation of power. You ensure that different parts of government are handled by different people. A system of checks and balances.

What the insitution of monogamy does, is recreate that in miniature. It allows individuals to establish a tyranny over another individual. True, it may only be over one individual, but it is still one person having full control over another. And that cannot be a healthy situation.

The point about free love and SPREADING the love, is actually more than first meets the eye. It removes the bondage of one person to another. At best this system is two people exercising power of mutual tyranny over eachother, but as in practice one party is often stronger willed than the other, one party is usually subject to the other. It doesn't always work out like that, and often the reality is one is stronger in some field, the other in others, but the point is in the field each party is weaker at, they find due to the bonds of monogamy, they become reliant on the other party.

Monogamy has ended up meaning, putting a lot of your eggs in one basket.

It's not ACTUALLY a wise way for a human being to live.

A human being is better off relying for his basic needs on as large a group of people as possible. Separating the provision of the needs s/he has from people. This, of course, means giving to more people too.

But for one man to rely on all the needs a woman provides, is in principle no different to a nation looking to a King to provide absolute government. And the same, of course, goes for a woman.
We see Monogamy is traditional. Humanity has done it since time began. Well, until fairly recently we'd been ruled by absolute monarchs since time began. Slavery is something we've only recently stopped doing too.

And Monogamy, in principle is the same sort of thing, it just looks more benign on the surface. But of course totalitarian states have pushed the virtues of family life. A citizen conditioned to accept the virtues of monogamy, is a citizen well on the way to being conditioned to love Big Brother.

A citizen who has rejected the right of another member of society to control her/him on an individual level is CERTAINLY not going to accept an all powerful state doing it.

The insitution of Monogamy is a blow at your individual liberty as a human being on a fundamental level. You, the individual are giving up the right to determine your own individual personal connections, be they platonic, intellectual or sexual. And it asks you to do that of your own free will.

And once it's done that, kidded you that accepting a form of slavery was by your consent- though it goes against every instinct you pretend you don't have, because you want to feel like a 'virtuous soul', it convinces you that the rest of the edifice is government by YOUR consent also.

Now let me ask you this. If you grew up in a culture where monogamy DIDN'T exist, where it was a totally unknown concept, do you really think that, without having grown up being encouraged to see nuclear families as the archetype, you'd ever actually meet someone and ever have the idea of making an exclusive commitment to them?

If you really think you would come up with that idea all on your own, stop reading now. You obviously really believe it, in which case, they've got to you. They don't need to take you to Room 101- you LOVE Big Brother.

But if you're reading this and admitting that yes, you do strive for monogamous relationships, it's what makes you happy, but actually it probably is because you've been conditioned that way, then...
Hold that thought.

And if you know damn well that they're something you often feel forced into, but in your heart of hearts, you hate being in them, it's just you find it hard to find someone to whom you can be honest to and admit you really just want an open relationship, STAND UP AND BE COUNTED.
Because you're not the bad person at all, not at all.
You're the one who really gets it.
You're the one who needs to start putting it across, showing people, showing people that free love isn't a dirty concept, it isn't about one big orgy, it isn't amoral, it's about being FREE through loving freely, through refusing to accept constraints on the relationships you build with others.

So respecting the right of someone to do it, of course, if you really want to do it of your own free will.
But would I actively discourage someone from making such a commitment, yes, I would.

I believe people are better off having sex with as many people as possible and simply fulfilling their sexual needs wherever there is a mutual sexual attraction. That way people would be more freer to keep their emotional connections natural, as in based on genuine platonic sentiments. Not tied by some unbreakable bond.

And the rest of love, the intimacy, the affection, the companionship?
Again, I believe this doesn't need to be limited to one person. People should spread these amongst as many people as they personally are comfortable with. And people should always be free to drift in and out of these things without any rules, just like any other friendships. The same rules should apply, no more, no less.

Monogamy is only a few letters away from Monarchy.

Perhaps Free Love is a bad word. Polygamy of course, is another concept entirely, worse in fact than Monogamy. Perhaps Demogamy is the word we should use?

The point is, really desiring freedom and equality, for men and women, does mean refusing to commit. Refusing on a personal level, ever to allow your mind, your body and your soul to be given to another, even if that choice is 'free'.

Yes, it's a hard choice, in some ways, because as things stand, there's a danger of ending up alone on your death bed. But if we're ever going to establish a society where people grow up feeling freedom in their blood and whose very instincts are against any attempts to encroach on their personal freedom, we must slay Monogamy.

So it's time to stand up and pledge now to NEVER COMMITTING.

To standing up candidly and say 'I will never partake in an exclusive monogamous commitment. Because I am a free human being, and I will not give up the freedom I was born with in such a way'.

And do not expect a commitment of exclusivity from anyone either- it makes you no better than a slavemaster/slavemistress. An abuser of the human spirit, seeking to make up for your lack of control in the world at large, by having someone under your control. Fight to be free, don't fight to enslave others. Refuse to accept the slavery of another, even if they offer it of their own free will.

And this is the test of how much you really care about your freedom. When you find someone you want to call your soulmate, have the guts to stand up and tell them, 'I love you and I want you in my life forever, I want it to be you I go to sleep with as many nights as is possible, I want you there with me when I die, but do not ask me to commit exclusively to you, either sexually, emotionally, platonically, or spiritually. I still have love, affection and sex for others too. You can be in life, but it will never all of it be yours'.

Because only then can you ever truly be free as an individual, and if you remain free as a person, you have some chance of being able to strive for true freedom for yourself and all mankind.

The only man who is truly free, is one who glories in being called a player.
And the only woman who is truly free is the one who glories in what is now considered a term of abuse, but is a word the next wave of feminism should embrace, raise high and champion as a badge of honour for the liberated woman, the free woman is an unashamed slut.

The concepts of monogamy and chastity are at the hearts of the conditioning that makes tyranny possible.

So, go forth and spread the love.
With pride.


Anonymous said...

free love..

i guess thats kinda like free will - we all have it in theory, but are we really able to use it?

But then again, wouldnt that mean if you wanted commitment, you should go for it. U dont judge how the other person chose to live or love?

Anonymous said...

I'm just not sure if I buy this notion of monogamy as control and slavery, Crushed. Sure, it can be-- just like any relationship. However, when you are in a loving, respectful relationship, it is the furthest thing from that. Okay, yes, there is compromise-- but that is a minor sacrifice, and quite frankly, a part of life, period. However, believe it or not, I like the way I lead my life now. I am completely happy with this one person. The whole point is that we do live our lives by the same morals and ethics naturally-- that is why we are so good together. It comes about this way naturally, rather than one of us trying to control the other.

I understand your objections, and fitting with the post below, I would never suggest that you subject yourself to something you clearly find demeaning. I think honestly is always the best policy in those regards. However, I kind of resent the idea that I don't know what's good for me that runs through this post. I am actually the happiest I've ever been, and I am no brainless traditionalist. As such, the idea that being in love and wanting to be with one person is similar to my being chained in a cage by a gimp is, well, more than a little patronizing.

Anonymous said...

polyamory's a good word.

i hear 'the ethical slut' is a good book.

but there are some flaws in your argument. anyone who has ever been in a healthy committed relationship knows that total control over your partner is absolutely impossible, even if it was desirable. there's no such thing as total control or mutual tyranny as you put it. tyrrany by definition goes only one way. in a healthy relationship there is compromise, not control.

you also argue that monogamy is correlated with monarchy and other hierarchical forms of social organization, but in fact many non-hierarchical,egalitarian tribal peoples practice monogamy.

Anonymous said...

Monogamy has many advantages. Especially when you are old and can't be bothered going through the whole horrible process of seduction over and over just to get sex and hugs and cooking and unconditional support.

Anonymous said...

The pharmaceutical companies would love this...imagine how much money they'd make on the prevention and treatment of all those sexual diseases if everyone just went around fucking whoever they felt like. Yuc.

Anonymous said...


You must have real trouble getting laid. Or a really small penis. Or something.

Civil liberties being violated, political control, mutual tyrrany???

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. Fuck, you must be a terrible shag if these are the lengths you have to go to live a life that YOU want to.

Anonymous said...

Firstly I figure free love can and should be whatever people want it to be. Monogamy for life, serial monogamy, multiple partners, polyandry polygamy, etc. You should not be “actively encouraging” (isn’t that another way of saying dictating) any particular thing.

As for your saying such arrangements should not be sanctioned. They should not have to be sanctioned/recognised by the state, but they need to be able to be agreed/sanctioned under law. There is a difference.

People really need some sort of legal protection with shared property, it would be stupid and wrong to prevent them making legally recognised contracts in this when people can do it in other aspects of their lives. Or would you ban employment contracts also, or contracts governing say building work.

It is surely the right of everyone to be able to enter into agreements and it is necessary that there is an agreed way of regulating them and adjudicating them when there is a dispute or failure. Without it you get into the realms of vendetta and personal enforcement.

Also if you see of relationships in terms of power and one establishing it over another then all I can say is you miss out on most all of what relationships are all about. I really don’t think it is a healthy way of looking at it.

I get the idea from the post you maybe come across like you also demean the Dom/Sub relationship even as you say you don’t disrespect it.

I do agree that monogamy can provide the opportunity, for a person inclined to it, to dictate to another, if that other allows them.

But it is not a given, it does not follow, any more than a girl dressing up and making herself attractive to go out is an invitation to rape. Any relationship provides an opportunity for a guy to beat up on a girl too, or maybe in the right circumstances the reverse. It does not happen with most people I think.

Princess Pointful makes the point. Other commentators also make very good points.

Anonymous said...

and yet, after I read this passage, "To standing up candidly and say 'I will never partake in an exclusive monogamous commitment. Because I am a free human being, and I will not give up the freedom I was born with in such a way'.", it suddenly seems to me that if freedom is so precious, the gift of that freedom - that someone who loves you were willing (and not foolishly, but an intelligent person who had thought it out), in spite of the consequences, to surrender such freedom unto you - well, such a gift would be precious indeed, and a love worth something (worth more than someone who wouldn't stick around, I'd feel, I guess...)

Anonymous said...

Sorry, don't buy it. I have been in a happy monogamous relationship for a couple of years now. We don't try to "impose" anything on the other; actually, we are all about individuality. Most aspects of life involve a certain level of compromise; the tiny world of a relationship is no different. I love the man I am with. I wouldn't want to be with anyone else. S'pose your free love ideal just ain't for me..

Anonymous said...

Crashie- We should strive for it, methinks.

I just don't see why anyone would WANT connitment.
I used to be bothered by it, the idea of 'my' girl sleeping with other men.
Then it occurred to me; why?

Why does it concern me? It doesn't ACTUALLY affect me in any way. And if I stop caring, it's a huge system of trust and worry I don't need to worry about. Why should I care if the person I love sleeps with other men?
No logical reason to.

Princess P- I don't doubt it's possible. But it's hard to find and you've perhaps, been lucky. And for you, it's come about naturally. Problem is, people try to force these things into all or nothing situations.

I think my experience however, is this. I tend to find that women I end up in what you might call meaningful relationships with have a tendancy to want to keep tabs in you way too much. And the reason they're doing it, is to see if you're being unfaithful. And if you tell them to mind their own business, they then take that as 'proof' you're up to something, when the reality is, whatever you're up to, it's none of their business. Soon you find their constant suspicions and attempts to pin down your movements drive you mad. You have two choices; allow them the huge amount of supervision over your life that it would take for them to be certain you weren't beinh unfaithful- as in accept them being in your life and informed of every action in your life to a degree I would define as intrusive- feel like a prisoner being watched over, basically- or adopt diversion tactics of some kind.

Now, if they really didn't care who you were seeing, or if you were or not, then everything would work out better.

Case in point- and this HORRIFIED me. Because it involved my mate and his partner, who I think the world of.

He works away most of the time, so he sees her twice a fortnight.

He got back a week or two ago, and found his phone bill on the side. So he asked her what it was doing there. And she said up front, she'd been reading it. And then she had the nerve to ask him which some of the regularly appearing mobile numbers were that she didn't recognise.
Now, as it happens, the mobile she was asking about, was work related. The regular calls were work related. He didn't have anything to hide, he's not cheated on her, I'd know because if he had, I'd be his cover story. So he hasn't cheated on her.
And I know the number in question. But it certainly got me thinking, because she's one of the best girls in the world. But she still thought she had the right to go through his phone bill and ask him whose number it was.

And no, no, she shouldn't have that right. It's not her phone bill, not her phone. A situation which seriously makes any person think they have a right of some kind to go through someone else's personal paperwork and ask them questions about it, is wrong in my book.

Sorry about the gimp analogy, I didn't mean you to take offence.

Benji- I have always personally felt controlled. Like a chain was on me. Trapped like a rat. After a while it gets too much.

I still feel it used as a method of social control. I think it would be much harder to establish tyrannies if every individual was fierecly conascious of staying an individual.

Gingatao- I think that's what seels it to people. feat that there's no one left. That we're losing our abilities to connect, so we better cash in our chips. I find it defeatist. If no one cashed in their chips, we'd all be able to carry on playing.
Just we're frightened of being left as the oldest swinger in town.

Kate- I have faith we'll eliminate VD one day...
And until then, there are such things as condoms, you know...

Sex can just be a pleasure, nothing wrong with that :)

La Femme- Not sure I see the pertinence of your comment...

Monogamy suits people who have trouble getting laid. They only have to pull once and leave it at that.

The point is, yes, I want the right to have sex, intimacy and form personal connections without having to give up what I see as basic human rights.

Yes, monogamy the way it is often lived is a gross surrender of individual liberty.

I'm having trouble understanding your point.

Moggs- Well, actively discouragfing people from surrdendering individual liberty, yes.
On the grounds it's not healthy for individuals NOT to defend their liberty.

Yes, but you recall, I don't encourage shared property. Communal living, with each person having separate accomodation within it. No need for shared property, hence, no need for marriage.

Maybe I'm just more conascious of these things than other people would be. Maybe I'm just way more protective of my individual liberty and privacy than others are.

But I think people should be. No one should WANT to subsume their identity into another person to such an unwholesome degree.

Personally, I've always found it intrusive. And I figure that the erffects it has on others, is kind of that of a soporific. It takes the best out of them, stops them giving to the world at large and encourages thenm to put all their energy into the couple. It's like Protectionism versus Free Trade in that respect.

Eve- Slightly S&M, don't you think?

I can see the logic, perhaps in some sense. Kind of like an act of religious devotion. And in a sense, it SEEMS admirable..

In much the same way, the individual heroism of many German soldiers in WW2 is not disputed.

But the cause they died for was evil.

Reeny- :)

Well, I wouldn't FORCE it on anyone.

I just think it's a healthier frame of mind to adopt if preserving the ultimate freedom of the individual is to be held paramount.

I think many people feel like you.

But I wonder, I really do, how many people would feel that way if they grew up in a world where the cultural expectation didn't exist, where children grew up without the nuclear family existing.

Anonymous said...

“Why should I care if the person I love sleeps with other men? “ Well a nasty itch might be one good reason…

You say ”Sorry about the gimp analogy, I didn't mean you to take offence.”

If I take offence or not is not the point. Maybe you didn’t mean for anyone to take offence, maybe even that I didn’t. But did you mean what you said? Was it a “wink wink nod nod” assumption of unconscious prejudice?

If so my point stands. Such relationships between good people involve huge trust, and great caring/consideration, often real love.

I agree 110%. It is not healthy for individuals NOT to defend their liberty. I guess maybe we have slightly different ideas of what liberty involves.

Maybe we are talking about two slightly different things. Maybe we see the effect some circumstances have in different lights?

The language you use shows what looks to me like a weird spin on things.

“No one should WANT to subsume their identity into another person to such an unwholesome degree.” is pretty loaded language and twists things.

I think it says more about what you think you see than what is there to be seen.

Anonymous said...

You see-- I do disagree with severe jealousy in any relationship. I do agree that this, when it is expressed, is often about control. But relationships do not equal jealousy and control. As I said, part of the shared values that ground my relationship are trust. Yeah, I've been told I'm too lax before, but to me, I would a million times rather have him choose to come back home to me than feel forced. And I think it can be this way.

Anonymous said...

Love your post.

I agree that monogamy is about control, and that a person may prefer freedom over monogamy.

Thanks for getting the word out!