In the meantime, caught in the swirling energies of the cultural flood, each member of the 'great change' as individual was subject to an emotional and psychic pounding. Many understood they were being use as instruments for the transformation, of not only of their own society, but of humanity and of sentient existence as well.  


          Taking refuge in a particular religion or philosophy, was a matter of life and death to many, a matter of sanity or insanity to others. Some became embedded in a particular myth or symbol or unconscious identity with a god or archetype and as happens in every time of radical cultural transformation, some were destroyed. There was a cost, of course, which there is in any revolution. On this necessary sacrifice the merchant media jumped, as proof of the uselessness of the process, as the press does on every manifestation of social and cultural revolution. The advertisers are not advocates of change.         


          One of the major conflicts, which amounted to a small scale war, was dealing with the materialist feminine absolute, that powerful force, Mother of civilization. The Hindus picture this force as a great black female Goddess eating Her male devotees, Her mouth and body awash in their blood; with Her six arms She offers a balance of goodies and various tools of torture and destruction. She dances on the body of the god Shiva in some representations, the Lord of the Universe. She is the embodiment of the material universe. In contemporary terms She is civilization itself. As in Diego Rivera’s mural in the Ford plant in Detroit, she is the upper middle-class matron, symbol of the highly feminized North American society; nurturer, emasculator and Mother of us all.  


          Any individual, male or female wishing to reach the deep mainsprings of their own integrated Self, must tangle with this vision of the mother-reality. Not surprising, it seems harder for the female to question the female absolute of her own culture than for the male, although the male is traditionally castrated in his early years, not only by his mother but by the educational and the religious institutions of western civilization.  


          Much of the male violence in the United States comes as a reaction againest the moral absolutes of feminine domination of class mores. The precepts of success, of security, of ‘penal’ punishment, of the way education is organized, around the concepts of comfort, cleanliness (sterility), of art as decorative entertainment, education as compliance, science at the service of utility and protection againest unknown enemies.  


          The accumulation of wealth and accent on security, derive out of the  extraordinary influence of the feminine in historical society. Modern civilization is  developed around the desires of the merchant feminine, out of trade in spices, ornamental cloth, fresh and varied food for the family, cooking  utensils, housing  materials and tools, exploitation of the male for the construction and defense of the home and hearth, castration of the male in the possessive games of creating societies and nations, urging  males to vie with one another, to learn the rules of possession (psychotic love and attachment) an archetypal feminine game, not to be underestimated, to be respected - for sure - at the same time to be aware of. Through the Image of Kali  birth and death is in the hands of the feminine. An individual, male or female, risk pain and terror reaching for their innate individuality , as Ramakrishna put it," lopping off the head of the Goddess."  


          The violence in the entertainment medium, in crime and war, come as much from reaction againest the feminine domination of the mores of the society, as  exploitation of barbaric and 'prurient' instincts of the male. The feminine and masculine are very much at war in present day society, as they have been in the  birth and generation of the species. It is the struggle that gives such amazing vitality to the species, as can be seen in the struggle between Judeo (feminine) Christianity and the Moslem (masculine) tradition, each centering on different concepts of the role of the female in the social spiritual order of the tribe.       


          The difficulty of the black kid in school comes as much from having to endure too much of the feminine (the females at home, the lash of the female teacher, school administrator, winding up probably under a female judge and social worker) as a reluctance to learn the strange language and mores of the white ruling class. The kid's old man probably left home in the first place because of the constant nagging of the females, who, once ensconced in a place, dominates the atmosphere, and who, in most cases, as soon as the first male child is born, would just as soon the old man left anyway.  


          In the white middle class, the situation is not too much different. After a couple of years of marriage and the birth of children - sons hopefully - the male parent is gradually eased out, if not actually from the home, given no place in the house, allowed a minor role in the family, despised often by his own children.  


          Finding no place in his own house the father will gravitate to the club or barroom, finding no place in her bed, the damn fool will look about for another relationship, or a brief affair, ending up with the wife taking the house and car and most of the money in the joint account, and further forced to pay alimony. 


          The town of Mill Valley, in Northern California, as just one example, just north of San Francisco, become famous as a coven for women with property and growing sons. Having gotten rid of the old man, taking his property, children and money, the middle aged women live in a kind of neurotic comfort. Driving Saab station wagons and BMWs, they beat a path from coffee klatch to feminist seminar, exulting in rabid male bashing free-for-all. Lonely  white women, their life-styles models which reflect the highest state the industrialized American female can hope to reach, representing the image of a feminist Valhalla. The suicide rate and dope use among the Mill Valley youth is exceptionally high. The male youths tend to be rather feminized, not  uncommon among the American middle class. One of the youths recently in desperation joined the al Qaeda in Afghanistan, was dragged back and awaits secret trial by the American military at God Knows where [poor kid, he was sentenced to 20 to life] .


          The educated American middle-class female, socially in a position of power, for all her brilliance of intellect and instincts, has difficulty perceiving the implications of her actions. For every time a male is bashed with hilarity in the coffee klatches, somewhere a wife is battered, a whore is abused, a woman walking alone or in her apartment is raped and beaten. Nature and society gives the female subtle power to protect herself and her brood, but many women push it too far, push a man's buttons beyond the point he can stand with any dignity. If he accepts the dominance of the female, and becomes pussy whipped, not only does he carry the resentment deep within himself, but the whole of the male gender adds  to the bank of grievance againest the female. 


          After the Mi Lai massacres in the Vietnam war, a congressional committee was organized to study the patterns of atrocities committed by American soldiers againest the North Vietnamese women. The hearing was broadcast and many were horrified to hear of the wanton cruelty of young American men  againest women, suspected of spying.  


          Many of these young men were white Southern boys, brought up in an atmosphere where the female is dominant; the cruelty and violence againest the Vietnam women was to some extant a way of reacting againest the constant attack on their manhood by the  females in their home ground.


          In the twentieth century the southern woman tended to be a powerful crone. Supported by the fundamentalist church and  traditional of matriarchy, the southern male, from the time of his infancy, was the victim of emotional emasculation, common in the American middle class but more virulent in the authoritarian South. Religious-authoritarianism and matriarchy  too often go hand in hand. Regular and  Military police welcomed the good ol' southern boy who harboring  fear of authority instilled by the feminine,  expressed in cruelty  and bullyism.


          But this is not a diatribe againest the female, God bless her. She is used badly. Consumer society built around  female addiction to things and an insane desire for cleanliness, is the target of the merchandiser. They woo the female through adds and TV sitcoms to buy useless things and gadgets upon which the economic structure depends, to send her sons off to be killed in merchant wars, to  castigate her daughters who stray from the norm and challenge authority.  Marriage in an industrial society is in most cases a subtle form of prostitution, the ritual of marriage an economic affair, both the male and female used by the  merchandiser.


          In the last few years the number of TV shows showing the man as a bewildered ass, and the woman as the source of all wisdom has skyrocketed. Male bashing has become an ingrained institution in the media. Its antithesis manifests in forms of violence againest women and children, a constant subject of  murder and police shows with a liberal dash of guilt thrown in. Tough detectives are shown bending under the superior influence of indignant female officers, judges and social workers. Details of the murder of women and children a daily fare in the tube.


          Although the use of the stock media family (the wise mamma, the stupid dad, the smart-ass kids) has always been with us, looking back to early days of TV family sitcom (Leave it to Beaver etc.), old dad of the early shows had a more benign role. Suddenly in the eighties, the scene changed, dad is either out all together or a bit of a fool.  In one show papa has to dress like a woman to back into the family.


          Male bashing  and guilt inspiring has become an industry. Some of the sitcoms today are so embarrassingly emasculating, the male has tuned out  by the millions. No wonder he follows the sports.


          The effect on male children in a fatherless middle class society is sad. The Boy needs a male againest whom to try out and develop his maleness. The rate of child drug addiction, alcoholism and suicide in places like the Mill Valley community is horrendous. the incidents of male children running amok has grown exponentially in the last ten years. Without some kind of male authority at the head, the boy can only turn to the group of boys his own age, all of them haunted by the same inordinate dictates of the female few of whom have the slightest idea of the needs of a young male. The young male, without a male direction in his life, becomes feminized and takes out his resentment by cruelty to others, joins restless confused gangs with no place go, dressing in pathetic costumes, challenging the social norms, or, if bent to the will of the  female absolute, becomes an indignant moralist reacting with female hysteria to  crime and punishment, a fit recruit  for armies and law enforcement agencies.


          Behind every authoritarian figure stands a ball-breaking female. The nun-educators of the Irish Catholic schools produced perfect models of policemen, trained to respect feminine authority like a god, or in rebellion againest the autocratic female, enlisted in the  Irish  Mafioso.


          Enforcement officers, for all their machismo, are for the most part, under the dominance of a strong mother or wife, carrying out the demands and mores of the feminine materialist absolute, burning with resentment within, which they take out on their captives 'the perps.'


          It must be pointed out that the females attending the Flower Revolution were just as anxious to find a new way to live, without being dominated by the matriarchy, nor by the patriarchy; in any case, not living off the ruins of the male. They fought for and won the right to follow their own bliss (As Campbell would put it), picked their own tools of art, literature, science and religion and have become a gender apart, struggling as hard againest the limitations set by their middle class matriarchy as againest the so called patriarchy.


          The main adversary for the rebellious female seeking to find her own creative self, turned out to be - not their fathers - but their mothers. These young women opting for freedom from the binds of middle class matronry, taking up the tools of academia, of art and medicine, found support among their own kind, did their best to avoid the strictures of traditional motherhood, bringing up children by themselves, or with another woman, sometimes traveling with the child about the world to visit the ashrams of saints and the great museums and ruins of ancient cultures. True the young boy had to find his manhood in struggling with the mother's lovers and friends who came and went; far from a perfect solution but free of the hysterical demands of the nuclear family turned viciously upon itself, creating an atmosphere poisoned with guilt and constant recrimination.


          It is not easy for either the male or female to fight the cultural possessive bonds of family and relationship in order to attain some degree of personal independence. . . a sense of self. The independent female devised imaginative ways to have her cake and eat it too, as did the male. New combinations of family units were tried with greater and lesser success. The most successful involved families getting out from the city, choosing a  life closer to the ways of nature where they could take out their frustrations by struggling againest the elements and growing their own healthy food, living in the community  of like minded individuals, or starting small businesses in common; in any case, working together. in an extended family arrangement.



- Nick Nickolds, 2004




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