Please note:

This is the Spring 2006 version.
The corrected, updated, and expanded Spring 2007 version is here:

    www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy26/409b-g26-lecture-notes.htm

 

 


 

 

University of Hawaii, Spring 2006, G24, Psychology 409b

Seminar on The Unity Model of Marriage

Dr. Leon James, Instructor

The web address of this document is:
    www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy24/409b-g24-lecture-notes.htm

 

TOGETHER IN ETERNITY

The Unity Model of Marriage

Every Day I'm Yours More and More

Lecture Notes Version 11e

 

By Dr. Leon James and Dr. Diane Nahl

University of Hawaii

 

Sections

 

1.    Introduction: Till Death Do Us Part or Till the End of Eternity?

2.    Mental Anatomy and the Individual's Threefold Self
2.1    Mental Anatomy of Women and Men

3.    Three Levels of Unity in the Marriage Relationship

4.    Unity Through Reciprocity and Differentiation

5.     Sensorimotor, Cognitive, and Affective Conjunction
        5.1    Sexuality: Love of the Sex vs. Love of One of the Sex
6.    Unity Model in Marriage: Ennead Chart of Growth Steps

7.    Threefold Degrees of Conjunction -- Tables 1b and 1c:

8.    Threefold Degrees of Conjunction -- Table 1d

9.    Male Dominance Model of Marriage

10.    Sexual Blackmail

11.    Mental Abuse

12.    Developing mental intimacy with one's wife

13.    The Spiritual Dimension to the Unity Model

14.    Making Field Observations (Tables 2 and 3)

15.    Dynamic Elements of the Ennead Chart -- Table 4

16.    Areas of Observations for Equity --- Table 5

17.    Behavioral Indicators of One's Relationship Model -- Table 7

17a.  Gender Discourse Within the Three Models

            17a    Part 1: Sexy vs. Unsexy Conversational Style of Husbands

            17a    Part 2: Spiritual Dynamics Between Husband and Wife

            17a    Part 3: Conversational Rules for Husbands in Conjugial Interactions

            17a    Part 4: Characteristics of Husband's Threefold Self During Discourse -- Table 7aa

            17a    Part 5: Field Exercise: Monitoring Disjunctive vs. Conjunctive Discourse

18.    Happiness and Unhappiness on the Ennead Chart -- Table 7b

19.    Contrasting the Three Models -- Table 8

20.    Examples of Anti-Unity Values (AUVs) -- Table 9

Reading List and References
Student Reports

 

Please Note:

For additional material not included in these Lecture Notes, consult

Volume 18 The Marriage Relationship in the Theistic Psychology series at:

www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic/ch11.htm

 


 

 1.  Introduction:
Till Death Do Us Part or Till the End of Eternity?

 

Section 1

 

1. Part A

 

This seminar on the unity model in marriage will give you the opportunity to examine gender behavior in the context of marriage by identifying the sub-components of gender habits in men and women within the three domains of behavior: affective, cognitive, and sensorimotor. We will use the phrase "threefold self" to refer to these three levels of human activity. Our focus will be on identifying the differences in the mental structure of husbands and wives so that we may gain a rational understanding of how they manage to actually form a pair or a unit (also called "one flesh"). In order to form a perfect functioning and fulfilling pair or unit, women and men must have reciprocal mental traits to allow them to conjoin mentally, and thus to reach conjugal intimacy. The happiness and fulfillment of both wife and husband depend on the attainment of mental intimacy in which they are best friends to each other. This is also called being "soul mates." We will use the expression "conjoint self" to refer to the reciprocal union of the marriage relationship, when it is based on the unity model. We will use the concept of "model" to refer to the principles, beliefs, and attitudes that husbands and wives use to govern their behavior in the marriage relationship.

 

The purpose of the course is to give you an opportunity to examine in detail the unity model of marriage proposed here, which focuses on the instructor's current research and thinking on marriage and gender relations. The model is influenced by the Writings of Swedenborg (1688-1772), in particular his book Conjugial Love (sometimes translated Marriage Love) (1768), available online: www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/CL/clintro.htm  or else here:

        www.theheavenlydoctrines.org/static/d6295/1.htm

 

The overall model we will focus on is the idea that a man and a woman can form a special and unique relationship in marriage in which they can become unified at all three levels of the threefold self--in sensory and motor behavior (sensorimotor self), in thinking operations (cognitive self), and in feeling states (affective self). When they are unified at all three levels, husband wife are best friends to each other and can be called "soul mates functioning with a conjoint self (instead of each with his and her independent selves). This is the ideal, the plan, the human potential.

 

But there are barriers or resistances to overcome with each level of the unification or conjoining process. We need to examine these barriers, and especially, the inherent and cultural resistance men have to the unification process. Women see the conjoint self of soul mates and best friends, as the ultimate happiness, the ultimate fulfillment, thus, heaven itself. Men do not at first see the conjoint self as a heaven, but as a kind of hell in which the wife is always encroaching on their mental space of freedom and comfort. So husbands frequently oppose the unification process of proceeding to more intimate levels, while wives constantly fight for pulling the husband into such intimacy. We will examine this classic and traditional fight by observing and monitoring the behavior of boyfriends, husbands, TV characters, and literature. You will read the reports of prior generation students in this course in which they present some of this evidence, Your reports will be similarly studied by future generations of students. You can access the reports from the links given in the Readings section at the end.

 

The first level of unity may be referred to as sensorimotor consociation and involves what the couple do together externally or socially. The second level may be called cognitive affiliation, involving how they each think and to what extent they agree in definitions and beliefs. The third and deepest level may be called affective conjunction, and involves what they feel for each other and whether they are striving for the same goals. This includes what they are motivated to achieve, whether for instance, they are willing to make their unification as the most important element in their life, more important than anything else. For instance, it is common for husbands to devote more time, attention and importance to other activities like children, career, parents, old friends, activities, etc. This means that achieving affective conjunction or intimacy is judged less important to the husband than to wife. This basic opposition forms the psychological dynamics of the marriage relationship -- its healthy progression or its gradual degradation into abuse and failure.

 

The hypothesis to be examined throughout the course is that the marriage relationship between husband and wife begins at a natural level and can add a spiritual level of relationship once the natural level is well established. We shall introduce the new concept of spiritual marriages which is based on what Swedenborg called conjugial love. He made a distinction between the two words -- conjugal and conjugial. Conjugal is the ordinary word that refers to natural marriages while conjugial is a new word he coined to refer to spiritual marriages. Natural marriages follow the model "Till Death Do Us Part" while spiritual marriages follow the model "Till Endless Eternity."

 

In other words, the word "spiritual" will be used in this course to refer to the afterlife. Couples who are soul mates to each other, and have achieved a relationship of mental intimacy at all three levels of the threefold self,

are able to sense by inner rational insight, that death cannot separate them. Hence they are united to endless eternity. Until the Swedenborg Reports, scientists were not able to introduce the concept of spiritual marriages and the concept of the afterlife. There was no scientific proof of the existence of the afterlife that takes place in a world of eternity, outside time and space, also called "the spiritual world" and "heaven and hell." These ideas were relegated to religion or folklore.  But this changed with the Swedenborg Reports written and published in the 18th century, as will be explained and discussed below.

 

The Swedenborg Reports present empirical proof of the existence of the afterlife in the spiritual world of heaven and hell. The unity model of marriage is based on Swedenborg's detailed empirical data which he gathered in the spiritual world. These data include the many interviews he conducted with married couples in heaven and hell. It may at first surprise you that we are talking about heaven and hell in a psychology course! Nevertheless you will see that it is possible, due to the Swedenborg Reports. More will be said on this as we progress, including how you can examine these reports yourself. Nothing here is based on religion or belief. Everything is based only on the objective evidence to be found in the Swedenborg Reports.

 

You are not asked to believe anything. You are asked to evaluate rationally and scientifically the evidence presented. This means examining it, before you reject it. To reject it before you examine it, will be discussed below as the negative bias in science, while to examine it before you reject, in order to see if you should reject it or accept it, will be discussed as the positive bias in science.

 

That marriages continue in the afterlife is good news because true love strives to be eternal, and not to die at some point in the future. Swedenborg shows that the truly human must be immortal and that to think of ourselves as mortal, is to remain below our true potential.

 

Some marriages remain what they started out to be, namely an external bond that is legally and socially recognized. It is also a psychological bond because married partners rely on each other and support each other in joint pursuits like parenting, financial resources, lifestyle, retirement, and so on. But note also that this external bond -- legal, social, psychological -- is not sufficient to stabilize the marriage and insure unending growth. Instead, half of the marriages fail in divorce and separation, and much of the other half fails to supply the intimacy, friendship, and romance, that wives crave for from their husbands. After examining the evidence for this situation, our conclusion will be that external "natural" marriages are necessary but not sufficient for achieving true affective conjunction or intimacy, and hence not sufficient for fulfillment and endless growth together.

 

We will follow this up with the concept of "spiritual marriages" which is based on Emanuel Swedenborg's Writings (see Reading List). We will examine the hypothesis that the bond between the wife and the husband can become spiritual, in addition to natural. The difference is illustrated by the marriage vows. Our culture involves the idea that marriage is dissolved at the death of one of the spouses. This is correct of course -- from the legal point of view, and also from the religious point of view for most people. It is a common belief we acquire in our socialization that marriage ends at death, hence the familiar phrase in the vows: "Until death do us part." But according to the hypothesis we are examining, the marriage bond need not end at death, but can go on forever in "heaven." Some couples who know nothing about the "afterlife" nevertheless have the instinctive feeling that they are "soul-mates" and can never be separated, even by death. Some spouses are so "close" that when one of them dies, the one remaining insists that that their spouse is "with them" mentally, psychologically, spiritually.

 

So this is not a new notion. Though in a minority group, to be sure, some couples seem to have a bond of mental intimacy that seems to go beyond the physical body and the socio-legal-psychological bond of "natural" marriages. We will call this type of marriage bond "spiritual" in the specific sense that the bond survives the physical separation of the spouses by death. Marriages that are external and limited to the natural world and the physical body will be called "natural marriage" or "external marriage." A natural marriage becomes a "spiritual marriage" when the married couple's idea of their bond changes from "until death do us part" to "until endless eternity."

 

Of course to take this step the partners have to know or assume that there is an afterlife, that they are both immortal human beings, and that they will be fully equipped with an eternal or spiritual body through which they can once again be together, be intimate sexually, live in a house, have a social life, and continue an endless heavenly existence in their immortality.

 

This knowledge of the afterlife is not available to most people today. It is flatly denied by materialistic science, and many religious dogmas are taught that deny marriages in the afterlife. Yet our culture supports many widespread activities around the idea that there is a spiritual world (or "heaven"), though nothing substantial is known about it, only wildly differing speculations. No wonder therefore that science cannot rely on this folklore about the afterlife. As a result, psychology does not know about spiritual marriages that occur right here on earth. Some couples have entered the spiritual dimension of their mental intimacy, but when they are studied by scientists, the spiritual dimension is neutralized or eliminated from focus. Hence the  research literature on marriage in psychology does not mention spiritual marriages and the afterlife. The negative bias in science acts as an intellectual barrier for researchers to investigate the mental intimacy that is real, but not detectable in interviews and videotapes of the couple's interactions.

 

This was the intellectual climate I was immersed in when I started studying the marriage relationship. But in 1981 my wife and I were browsing together the shelves in Hamilton Library, and we happened to come across a shelf containing a collection of around 30 volumes, all by the same author: Emanuel Swedenborg. This really intrigued us since we never saw so many volumes by one author. We each checked out one volume and started reading. We could not stop at one volume but went on to read the entire collection. What we found was amazingly stupendous!

 

You can read about Swedenborg's Writings in detail by consulting the Theistic Psychology Lecture Notes for Psych 459 at:
    www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy24/459-g24-lecture-notes.htm

 

This is truly wonderful and amazing news! We live our immortality in eternity, which is our mental world, not as a dream specter or ghost, but as a full fledged bodily human being. Swedenborg lived in this world of spirits constantly for 27 years, from age 57 to 82 in the years 1745 to 1772, while at the same time he maintained his busy schedule as scientist, government engineer, legislator, traveler, international publisher, and frequent invited guest at the Swedish Royal table where his amazing stories were greatly appreciated and admired. This man of impeccable reputation all his life, a greatly admired genius in science and philosophy, wrote that he had been prepared by God from earliest childhood to be the vehicle for what God wanted the human race to know regarding marriage, and how women and men are to achieve their highest potential through an eternal marriage as soul mates.

 

At first this sounds to most of us as a kind of fantastic child-like story, introjected right in the middle of a research seminar in psychology by a professor who must be terribly naive, or worse. I am attributing these words to you so that you may gain some perspective on the content of this course. I am trying to show that I am aware of the fantastic quality of my proposal.

 

Nevertheless, please hear me out and continue your examination and study of the facts being presented. To think that this proposal is fantastic, is a common reaction for most people. To me, this common widespread negative reaction, shows that it is a group practice that we all learn, and that when we are exposed to this kind of a proposal, a trained reasoning process is set in motion in each of our individual minds, and we react as expected by thinking that this is fantastic science fiction, rather than science. And it is pretty easy to start listing all the reasons why we think that it is fantastic and not science. And if we compare all these reasons given, we will find that almost everybody has given the same reasons. Again, this fits with what I am saying, namely that the resistance is a built in learned reaction against any proposal in science that makes mention of the afterlife, heaven and hell, or how God is managing events, and especially, that God appeared to Swedenborg at age 57 and prepared him to be conscious simultaneously in both worlds, and also that he talked to the people there, including Aristotle and Newton, and other historical figures we read about in literature.  All this kind of thinking strikes us at first as being fantastic due to our socialization and education.

 

But note this: although we are thinking that this Swedenborg's proposal is fantastic and impossible, we are not able to prove that it is false and fantastic, or even, that it is not science. This is why I call it the negative bias in science -- Swedenborg's dualist proposal is rejected automatically without a need to examine it. For further discussion along this line, please consult Volume 1 of Textbook of Theistic Psychology at www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic/

 

Quoting from Swedenborg's book Conjugial Love (1768):

CL 42. To this I will append two narrative accounts from the spiritual world. Here is the first:

One morning I looked up into the sky, and I saw above me expanse upon expanse. And as I looked, the first or nearest expanse was opened, and shortly the second, which was above it, and finally the third, which was the highest of all. By the light coming from them I perceived that on the first expanse were angels of the first or lowest heaven, on the second expanse were angels of the second or middle heaven, and on the third expanse were angels of the third or highest heaven. I wondered at first what was happening and why. But shortly I heard a voice from heaven like the sound of a trumpet, saying, "We have perceived, and now see, that you are meditating on conjugial love. Moreover, we know that so far no one on earth knows what true conjugial love is in its origin or in its essence, and yet it is important for them to know. Therefore it has pleased the Lord to open the heavens to you, that the inner faculties of your mind may receive an influx of illuminating light and thus perception. "Among us in heaven, especially in the third heaven, our heavenly delights come principally from conjugial love. Consequently, by permission granted us, we will send a married couple down to you, in order that you may see."

[2] And suddenly, then, a carriage appeared, coming down from the highest or third heaven, in which I saw a single angel. But as it drew near, I saw that it held two. The carriage shone before my eyes in the distance like a diamond, and harnessed to it were young horses as white as snow. And the couple sitting in the carriage held in their hands a pair of turtledoves. And the couple called out to me, "You want us to come closer. But beware, then, of the flashing light coming from our heaven, the heaven we descended from. It is a blazing light, and you must take care that it does not penetrate interiorly. By its influx, indeed, the higher ideas of your understanding are enlightened, ideas that, in themselves, are heavenly. But these same ideas are inexpressible in the world in which you live. Receive the things you are about to hear, therefore, in rational terms and so explain them to the understanding." I replied, "I will take care. Come closer." So they came, and behold, it was a husband and his wife. And they said, "We are married. We have lived a blessed life in heaven from the earliest time, which you call the golden age, remaining forever in the same flower of youth that you see us in today."

[3] I looked at the two of them closely, because I perceived that they represented conjugial love in their life and in their adornment - in their life as shown in their faces, and in their adornment as shown in the garments they wore. For all angels are affections of love in human form. The essential, dominant affection shines out from their faces, and they are given clothing on the basis of their affection and in accordance with it. Consequently, in heaven they say that everyone is clothed in his own affection. The husband appeared to be between adolescence and early manhood in age. From his eyes flashed a light sparkling with the wisdom of love. His face seemed to be inmostly radiant with this light, and because of the radiance from within, outwardly his skin virtually shone. As a result, his whole facial appearance was singularly one of dazzling good looks. He was dressed in a full-length robe, and under the robe he wore a blue-colored garment, which was tied about the waist with a golden girdle bearing three precious stones, two of them sapphires, one on each side, and a garnet in the middle. His stockings were of shining linen, into which had been woven threads of silver; and his shoes were made entirely of silk. This was the representational form that conjugial love took in the case of the husband.

[4] In the case of the wife, however, it took the following form. I saw her face, and did not see it. I saw it as the very essence of beauty, and did not see it because the beauty was beyond expression. For there was in her face the bright glow of a blazing light, like the light possessed by angels in the third heaven, and this light dimmed my vision, so that I was simply stupefied by it. Noticing this, the wife spoke to me, saying, "What do you see?" I answered, "I see only conjugial love and a picture of it. But I see and do not see." At this she turned at an angle away from her husband, and then I could look more intently. Her eyes flashed with the light of her heaven, which is blazing, as I said, and so takes its quality from the love of wisdom. For wives in the third heaven love their husbands on account of their husbands' wisdom and in response to it, and the husbands love their wives on account of and in response to that love directed towards them, and so they are united.

The wife had her beauty as a result of this, such beauty that no artist could reproduce it or portray it in its true form, for a flashing of light like that is not possible in the painter's colors, nor is such loveliness expressible in his art. Her hair was attractively arranged in a style to match her beauty, with jewels in the form of flowers inserted into it. She had a necklace of garnets, from which hung a rosette of peridots. And she had bracelets of pearls. She was dressed in a scarlet gown, and under it a purple bodice fastened in front with rubies. But what surprised me, the colors kept changing depending on which way she was facing in relation to her husband, and their sparkle also kept changing accordingly, being now more, now less - more when they faced each other, and less when she faced away at an angle.

[5] When I had seen these things, they spoke with me again. And when the husband spoke, he spoke as though he spoke at the same time on behalf of his wife, and when the wife spoke, she spoke as though she spoke at the same time on behalf of her husband. For such was the union of their minds, from which comes their speech. It was then that I heard as well the way conjugial love sounds, how it was inwardly together with, and also the result of, the delights of a state of peace and innocence. Finally they said, "They are calling us back. We have to go." They then appeared to be again riding in a carriage, as before, and they were borne off along a road stretching out between flower gardens, from whose beds rose olive trees and trees full of oranges. And as they drew near their heaven, young women came to meet them and welcome them and take them in. (CL 42)

CL 43. After this, an angel from that heaven appeared to me, holding in his hand a sheet of paper, which he unrolled, saying, "I saw that you were meditating on conjugial love. This sheet of paper contains secrets of wisdom hitherto undiscovered in the world. They are disclosed now, because it is important. In our heaven there are more of these secrets than in the rest of the heavens, because we live in a marriage of love and wisdom. But I predict that none will make that love their own except those who are received by the Lord into the New Church, which is the New Jerusalem." Saying this, the angel sent the unrolled sheet of paper down, and one angelic spirit took it and placed it on a table in a particular room, which he immediately locked. And handing me the key he said, "Write." (CL 43)

(if you want to see the continuation, check the book here: www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/CL/minh.htm  )


 

1.  Part B

 

Now we may reply, Yes, we cannot prove that the Swedenborg reports are not empirical, but neither can we prove that the Swedenborg reports are empirically objective and valid observations. This is correct. And that is why I call my proposal "the positive bias in psychology or science."

 

So here we are. Either way we go -- negative bias or positive bias in science -- we must adopt a bias. In this proposal you are being asked to adopt the positive bias, and to hold the negative bias in abeyance, until the end of the course, at which time you can bring it back, should you still want to. By adopting the positive bias now, you are giving yourself the opportunity to examine the evidence in seriousness rather than in mockery. In order to examine what I am presenting in seriousness, you need to act like in your mind, that you are adopting for the moment, the positive bias in science for the sake of the potential benefits being claimed for learning this new knowledge.

 

 We also want to realize in clear awareness and consciousness, that our initial preference for the negative bias position in science, is not due to our own thinking, but to the accepted thinking that we do by habit about science, with borrowed attitudes from our socialization, and especially definitions in our science education in high school and in college. We are told over and over again that God and science don't mix because you can't investigate God by observation and experiment. Hence it is outside the realms of science. We all received this notion. But notice that we were not told that this is the negative bias in science. Instead we were told that this is science. Why, do you think?

 

My answer is that those who hold the negative bias in science cannot see that it is a bias. They only see the positive bias as a bias, and not as science. So the negative bias in science creates a science knowledge culture that is dead set against anything that is not definable by physical measurements and abstract derivations thereof.

 

But those who argue for the positive bias in science are putting up a valid challenge. As in my case in this proposal, I am saying that it is possible to examine the Swedenborg reports rationally and impartially, in order to decide whether they are empirically valid and rationally meaningful, or not. I have done so myself and found them rational, empirical, valid, scientific, and highly useful to know about. As a result I set out to present to you the content of these reports in the form of a textbook of theistic psychology. Of course our semester is limited to 17 weeks and therefore I have selected from that material for your examination and evaluation. You can always continue your study and evaluation on your own after the course is over.

 

In this seminar on the unity model of marriage we will discuss Swedenborg's unique experience to some extent, enough that you may gain a rational and scientific idea of the afterlife. The religious view on the afterlife will not be examined in this course. Swedenborg was a respected and well known Swedish engineer, scientist, and legislator (1688-1772), known for his wide ranging set of discoveries in mining engineering, crystallography, chemistry, physics, anatomy. His science was unusual in that he always tried to include God as the creator and manager of all phenomena, while other well known scientists and mathematicians like Descartes, Leibniz, Newton, Darwin, only mentioned God in the Preface of their book, acknowledging Him as the Creator of Nature. But then they never mentioned God again in the rest of the book that contained their scientific theory. Swedenborg on the other hand kept bringing God into all of his scientific theories. It is clear to me as I read all of Swedenborg's works and Writings that God has the status of a scientific concept. This is totally unique, I believe, to Swedenborg's Writings. God in science (not religion). God as a scientific concept, not religious. Hence Swedenborg's science can be called "theistic science" to indicate that God has a conceptual status in that approach to science.

 

At age 57, Swedenborg had a vision experience in which God as a Divine Human Man appeared to him and told him that Swedenborg had been unconsciously prepared since early childhood to become a theistic scientist and to build up the scientific knowledge and theory in which God could be incorporated as an objective concept and made part of the scientific explanation of events. Now that Swedenborg had formed the natural basis for a theistic science, he was ready for the spiritual laboratory he needed to provide the objective evidence for dualism in science. Swedenborg's "substantive dualism" refers to the philosophical and scientific theory that human beings are born into two worlds simultaneously -- with a temporary physical body in the natural world of time and space, and a permanent or eternal spiritual body in the spiritual world not in time and space (called "eternity").

 

The physical body and the mental body are connected so that our sensations, thoughts, and feelings occur in our spiritual body, as the physical body exists and moves around in the natural world. At the death of the physical body, the spiritual body is freed from any connection with the world of time and space. We then continue our life of immortality in the spiritual world. Swedenborg was able to confirm this by direct observation, when at age 57 his encounter with God left him conscious simultaneously in both worlds. We are all dual citizens, like Swedenborg, but we don't get to be conscious in our spiritual body until the death of the physical body. Swedenborg observed thousands of people being "resuscitated," which occurs about 36 hours after the death of the physical body. He talked to many people immediately after their resuscitation. Most of them were extremely surprised to find themselves alive in the spiritual world.

 

Swedenborg visited the people who had been in the world of spirits for untold ages. He described their cities and lifestyles. He talked to people whom he personally knew and had passed on. He talked to people he had read about in literature like Aristotle or Luther. He described the lifestyle in the "heavenly" and "hellish" cities and societies that he found there. His dual citizenship lasted for 27 years until age 82 when he passed permanently into the spiritual world. During those 27 years he published almost 40 volumes of reports on the spiritual world. One of the most amazing piece of news: people in the afterlife are in a spiritual body that is youthful (around age 20) and in heaven everyone lives as a married couple. His book Conjugial Love (1763) is a detailed description he observed of the relationship between husband and wife in the eternity of their heaven. Each couple is called "an angel" because from a distance they appear as one angel, but close up they are seen as a husband and wife.

 

The unity model of marriage in this course is based on the empirical descriptions that Swedenborg gives of the "angel couple" which is what married partners are called in the afterlife of their heaven. But Swedenborg also described the "infernal marriages" of people who are in the hells of their mind -- and that is pretty ugly and awful! Swedenborg also describes and explains why people choose to be in the heavens or in te hells of their mind -- for he found that in the afterlife, everyone chooses their own preference of life.

What Swedenborg discovered empirically by direct observation, multiple times in the course of daily observations for 27 years, is that when people are resuscitated in the world of spirits a few hours after the death of the physical body, they appear not as filmy gaseous spirit ghosts, but exactly the same as in their physical body!

 

They have solid bodies that he could touch, shake hands with. He ate with them. He talked to couples who had been husband and wife for untold ages, who told him they were doing in their heaven everything they did on earth with their physical bodies, except that here, their sensations were much keener and stronger than they had in their physical bodies. In other words what Swedenborg saw and confirmed many times in different ways, is that our afterlife of eternity is spent in a real body that is immortal and cannot die. This real body of immortality is what I call "the spiritual body" or "the mental body." We could also call it "the rational ether body" because it is a body constructed out of rational ether, which is the substance out of which all things are made of in the world of eternity, which is the mental world of the human race (see Section xx).

 

This makes sense since the world of eternity = the mental world of self and consciousness.

 

We are born dual citizens, with a temporary physical body on earth, made of the physical materials of the natural sun, and a permanent spiritual body, or mental body, that is made of the spiritual substances of the Spiritual Sun (see Section xx). I always capitalize "Spiritual Sun" because it is nothing but the aura of spiritual light and and spiritual heat that surrounds the visible Divine Human. Hence the Spiritual Sun is the infinite Divine Human proceeding from Himself into the created universe (see Section xx).  Any person who ascends in consciousness to the Third Heaven in their mind, can visually see the Divine Human surrounded by the Spiritual Sun as an aura (see Section xx). Swedenborg at age 57 suddenly became able to become conscious through the entire range of the human mind, from the bottom of the mind called hell, to the top of the mind called the "Third Heaven." Everyone he met in the Third Heaven was able to see visually the Divine Human inside this Divine aura called the Spiritual Sun. Hence the Spiritual Sun is part of God and is consequently Divine. Therefore I capitalize it, like I do for God, Divine, Divine Speech, Sacred Scripture, Divine Love and Wisdom, Divine Providence, Divine Psychologist, and so on (see Section xx).

 

I capitalize Heaven even though it is part of the human mind, outside and below the Spiritual Sun. This is because when our conscious awareness operates from the Third Heaven in our mind, we inhibit our own sensations, thoughts and feelings, and become open to experiencing the Divine Human's Personality of sensations, thoughts, and feelings -- as adapted uniquely to each person. Our personality in our Third Heaven is from God directly, rather than from God indirectly, as it is below the Third Heaven in our mind. As our conscious awareness travels outward and into the lower regions of the mental world, we are less and less like the Personality of the Divine Human, and more and more like the personality of animals and beasts (see Section xx). So it makes sense to distinguish always between what is directly from the Divine in the operations of the mental world, and what is indirectly from the Divine and distorted in the operations of our mind. We capitalize what is directly Divine, and not what is indirectly from God and constructed by our own capacities.

 

All of this may sound like a naive fairy tale, not science! If you want to find our more how this is indeed science, and not a fairy tale or religion, I invite you to read a little further on "the negative and positive bias in science" available in these two documents:

 

www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy24/409b-g24-lecture-notes.htm

www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy24/459-g24-lecture-notes.htm#topic1

 

This is a research seminar focusing on a specific approach to marriage. It is not a survey of various theories and approaches on gender behavior and marriage. I am presenting a model based on 18th century writer E. Swedenborg (1688-1772). The articles in the Reading List include his articles as well as contemporary articles written by people interested in Swedenborg's Writings. We will also review the research studies of linguist Deborah Tannen on gender differences in discourse or talk, and the views of Dr. Laura Schlessinger, well known radio therapist, through one of her popular books, as well as other authors.


 

 

2.  Mental Anatomy and the Individual's Threefold Self

 

Section 2

 

2.  Part A

 

The immortal spiritual body with which we are born, contains our mind, that is, our mental organs called the affective organ, the cognitive organ, and the sensorimotor organ (see Section xx). These three organs are in the spiritual body or the mind in the same way that the physical body contains the circulatory system, the respiratory system, and the nervous system. The circulatory system includes the heart and all its veins and capillaries reaching and permeating every organ and cell of the body.

 

The circulatory system corresponds to the affective organ whose operations give us the subjective life of feeling. Feelings in the spiritual body, or the mind, are like the circulatory system in the physical body, because feelings nourish the life of experience. Feelings give us

  • an affective consummatory life such as needs, wants, desires, satisfactions, pleasures, interests, attractions, etc. (and their opposites)
    and

  • an affective optimizing life such as intentions, motives, purposes, endeavors, resolve, compassion, love, etc. (and their opposites)

 

The respiratory system corresponds to the cognitive organ whose operations give us the subjective life of thinking. Thoughts in the spiritual body, or the mind, are like the respiratory system in the physical body, because thoughts give social and cultural content to our life of experience. Thoughts give us

  • a cognitive appraising life through memory, imagination, words, meaning, concepts, topics, knowledge, logic, common sense, conversation, etc.
    and

  • a cognitive planning life through rational reasoning, inventiveness, predictions, hypotheses, fantasies, schedules, blueprints, management policies, etc.

 

The nervous system corresponds to the sensorimotor organ whose operations give us the subjective life of sensing the environment outside the body and of acting upon that environment through motor determinations.  Sensations and motor determinations in the spiritual body, or the mind, are like the nervous system in the physical body, because sensations give us the life of experiencing the world outside of us and motor determinations give us the ability to make our bodies move and interact with the environment. Sensations and motor determinations give us

  • a sensory noticing life such as seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, pleasure, pain, heat, cold, etc.
    and

  • a motor execution life such as moving, pushing, pulling, dancing, chewing, verbalizing, writing, drawing, etc.

 

Here is then a summary of the exact correspondence between mental anatomy and physical anatomy (try to memorize this after you studied the details given above):

  • an affective consummatory life in the spiritual body (= circulatory veins in the physical body)

  • an affective optimizing life in the spiritual body (= circulatory arteries in the physical body)
     

  • a cognitive appraising life in the spiritual body (= respiratory inhaling in the physical body)

  • a cognitive planning life in the spiritual body (= respiratory exhaling in the physical body)
     

  • a sensory noticing life in the spiritual body (= nervous afferent input in the physical body)

  • a motor execution life in the spiritual body (= nervous efferent output in the physical body)

 

The affective life of feelings cohere together as a cumulative whole called the affective self.

The cognitive life of thoughts cohere together as a cumulative whole called the cognitive self.

The sensorimotor life of sensations and motor determinations cohere together as a cumulative whole called the sensorimotor self.

 

Every person can therefore be studied, described, and understood as a threefold self.


 

2.  Part B

 

Gender behavior in marriage is defined in this course along all three interacting domains of the individual's threefold self. The individual's affective self operates the feelings and motivations we maintain in dating or in marriage relationships. The cognitive self operates the thinking and reasoning we do in these relationships. The individual's sensorimotor self operates the sensations, perceptions, and motor acts we perform in gender relationships. The category of "motor acts" includes overt verbal behavior (discourse, talk) and non-linguistic behaviors (expressions, appearance, style). Be aware however that motor acts and talking occur not from themselves but from cognitive acts (our thinking and lifestyle philosophy), and these in turn occur from our affective acts, which are motivations and needs that guide our thinking towards goals. Sensorimotor acts, cognitive acts, and affective acts form a perfect synergy between feelings, thoughts, and actions. This is called the threefold self or person.

 

In other words, each of us is involved in gender relationships in which we operate along three interconnected domains of behavior. The deepest and most influential is the affective operation in which we maintain selected motivations and desires in accordance with our primary needs and satisfactions. These affective operations in our mind are the most influential or determinative because they select and guide the other two domains. Affective operations guide and influence the direction of operations in the cognitive self, so that what we think or how we justify things cognitively, is selective and responsive to our affective motives. We entertain and prefer a way of thinking that will support and promote our motivations and feelings. In other words, our cognitive behavior adjusts itself to support our affective behavior. The affective and the cognitive domains together select and determine the sensorimotor behavior that eventuate in our overt actions, appearance, words, and styles. What we do and say amounts to our overt gender behavior, which is the result of what we think, and that is the result of how we feel and what motivates us.

 

Note that we are often more aware of what we think than of how we feel (or what motivates us). In relationships between a man and a woman, women get more practice in becoming aware of their own feelings and motivations than men, who in comparison, tend to be less aware of their own feelings and motivations. This is because women are more motivated to spend time and focus to figure out how they really feel or what they really want. Women tend also to be more aware of the man's feelings and motivations than the men are of their own feelings and motivations. This is because women are motivated to form a united couple, while men tend to be more motivated to maintain their independence and options. However, this does not mean that men have less feelings than women, as it is sometimes misrepresented in gender stereotyped thinking. It means that men are less motivated to discover their feelings and the feelings of women. However, as we shall see, men can learn to acquire this interest, habit and practice.

 

Note well this principle: Both men and women have the same amount of feelings and emotions. This fact can be observed when you analyze how men behave and react to things moment by moment--with surprise, or with anger, or being pleased or displeased, feeling like talking or feeling like keeping quiet, being in a good mood or bad, getting excited when telling a story, picking a fight, feeling resentful, liking something, appreciating something, feeling happy about something, walking out on an exchange, being terrified to commit, being worried about their success, lacking confidence or feeling very confident, getting excited in games, etc. These observations prove that men equally with women have feelings and react with emotions all the time. Living means having emotions and feelings. Hence it is invalid to say that men have less feelings than women, or that men are less emotional then women. Instead, we need to think that men express their feelings and emotions differently than women, and we shall study these differences.

 

Emotional reactions and feeling motivations are a necessary part of all thinking and acting. It is not possible to act and react in a conversation or interaction without feelings and motivations being present all the time, at every instant. Nevertheless there are differences between men and women as to how aware or conscious they are of their own feelings and emotions from moment to moment, or of the emotions of their partner. Women tend to specialize in becoming aware of feelings and emotions of their partner. They are motivated to practice more than men in focusing consciously on feelings in gender relationships. This is because women are motivated to conjoin to the man of their choice as intimately as possible, while men are motivated to keep their independence emotionally and in their feeling life.

 

This difference in the skill of gender perceptiveness between a man and a woman creates an active gender dynamic in which the woman is motivated to prod her man to become more aware of his and her feelings and motivations. The man tends to resist this "affective prodding" and finds it unpleasant and objectionable. This creates a constant strain on the developing relationship. The woman feels that the man doesn't want to "commit" and is resisting the process of conjunction and wanting to maintain independence and distance, thereby keeping the couple in a state of division and conflict which is not totally satisfying to the woman. Nevertheless, all men can learn to be motivated to understand and recognize their feelings and those of their partners. We will examine the methods men can use to be successful in this fundamental change in their gender character.

 

Both men and women can gain understanding of the initial oppositeness between the sexes--women striving to conjoin, men resisting the process. The analysis of how men and women talk to each other reveals this dynamic opposition between men and women, as exemplified in the studies reported in our textbook by Deborah Tannen--Gender and Discourse. Analyzing verbal interactions between men and women is a powerful method for bringing out the differences between how they use talk to either oppose each other or to gain deeper intimacy and mutual support. Some of your activities in this course will include observing the talk and interaction of men and women in real life and on television (see Instructions for Report 1).

 

The views of "Dr. Laura" in her book The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands presents the point of view that men are in general "simpler creatures" than women, and that a wife needs to treat her husband in a certain way in order to keep him happy and well functioning. This is a different model of marriage than the unity model because it establishes an unequal status between men and women. This point of view puts less of responsibility on the men to change and more responsibility on the women to learn to live with it. The wife is told to adjust to this unequal status rather than to seek equality or unity.

 

The individual's threefold self in gender relationships is a joint product of biology, socialization, culture, and spiritual make up. As children we acquire the relationship style of our parents, other adults, and the media (TV, movies, songs, magazines, cartoons, commercials). By the time we begin adolescent or adult relationships, men have been exposed to years of stereotyped gender behaviors in all three domains of the threefold self:

  • (a) exploitative feelings and intentions (affective self) towards girls and women, whom they view as the "opposite" sex

  • (b) sexist thoughts (cognitive self) that stereotype women in a negative content

  • (c) injurious or hostile actions and words (sensorimotor self) against women

These affective, cognitive, and sensorimotor patterns of negative gender behavior by men create an atmosphere of discord and conflict in dating and marriage, even as the partners strive to love each other and become a functioning and satisfying unit.


2.1  Mental Anatomy of Women and Men

Section 2.1

 

2.1  Part A

 

The expression "mental anatomy" at first sounds like a metaphor about the mind. We are used to hearing about the anatomy of the physical body. But regarding the mind, it is common for us to imagine that it either doesn't exist, or if it does exist, it is something gaseous or transparent, not solid, just as "a spirit" or "departed person," is often portrayed in literature or television. But we are also familiar with the portrayal of angels who appear on earth and have physical bodies while they are here. But we imagine that after they return to "heaven," they no longer have a real body for being married. We all have been exposed to the various fantasies or imaginings that people have about the afterlife, including our own. This is why it is essential that we stick with the facts and the actual observations. Swedenborg was the only scientist in history who was allowed by God to be conscious in his spiritual mind before resuscitation, and therefore he is the only scientist in the history of the world who can give us factual information about the spiritual world of the afterlife in eternity. This is looking at the Swedenborg Reports with the positive bias in science perspective.

 

It is fascinating to discover what married couples are like when they reach the heavens in their mind. Swedenborg's observations of the relationship between husbands and wives in heaven give us factual information about the future we can have in our immortality after we are no longer connected to the physical world. People who find their way into the heavens of their mind, are married, to symbolize and reflect their mental unity. Amazingly, when Swedenborg saw a conjugial couple from a distance, he saw but one person walking or standing. But when he came nearer to the couple, they were a husband wife (see Section xx). The fact that they appear as one person is an outward representation of their inward mental unity.

 

From Swedenborg's description of the difference between men and women, I constructed various visual charts to picture their mental anatomy. By studying the details pictured in somewhat different way, it might be easier for you to gain a more detailed knowledge and understanding of how men and women differ in their spiritual anatomy. Remember: spiritual = afterlife of eternity. So the anatomical difference between the mind of men and women remains forever to distinguish them from birth to eternity.

 

This diagram is from an article  I wrote on "spiritual genes in marriage" and is available here:   www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy/instructor/gloss/dow2.html

 

Spiritual Gender Genes

 

dowfig1.gif (5308 bytes)

 

dowfig2.gif (8222 bytes)


 

2.1  Part B

 

The following diagram is from an article on "The Spiritual Psychobiology of Marriage" and is available here:

www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy/instructor/gloss/dow1.html#biology

marriage.jpg (43770 bytes)

The diagram immediately above shows the two phases or stages of marriage. Initially, the man's consciousness of externalizing truth, which is the truth he knows, conjoins itself with the wife's externalizing good. That is the wife's externalizing affections conjoin with the husband's externalizing cognitions. Thus they form an externalizing marriage or bond. It is externalizing because the man's truth and the wife's affections are both in the externalizing or lower degrees of their consciousness. However, if the two partners continue to grow together and conjoin more deeply within, then they enter phase 2 which is an internal union or conjunction. Now their internalizing parts are conjoined or united--the man's internalizing good and the woman's internalizing truth. Now for the first time the man becomes truly a husband and the woman truly a wife.

In the diagram below, the same process is portrayed. The externalizing union in stage 1 is shown to bond the man's externalizing truth to the wife's externalizing good. This is not so much a true union as a partnership since it resides in externalizing (or lower) parts of the consciousness. Husband and wife as partners are adjoined to each other by externalizing natural life and family, but they are not yet conjoined from within by inner or spiritual life. But in stage 2, the husband's internalizing good is conjoined to the wife's internalizing truth. Now the marriage consists of his affections covered over with her truths. This is a true conjunction or union because it resides in the higher or internalizing regions of their consciousness and life. Only when this stage of internal conjunction is achieved can they be regenerated into a heavenly marriage and live together in eternity.

marriage2.jpg (51046 bytes)

Couples who do not progress to an internal union of minds or spirits remain separated in their internals, and when they meet again in the other life, they live with one another again for a brief period. They then can become aware of each other's internal character and disposition, and these separate them. Each is then given another partner with whom they can enter into an internal marriage in heaven. But this happens only when both have been regenerated while still in the physical body. If they are unsuitable to each other by internal disposition or genius and separate, the one who is regenerate goes to heaven with the newly given conjugial partner or soul mate, while the other who is not regenerated goes to hell where they enter into an infernal concubinage with a partner. These infernal marriages are purely externalizing and both partners are "devils" who hate each other's guts yet are forced to endure each other in a marriage made in hell.


 

 

 3.  Three Levels of Unity in the Marriage Relationship

 

Section 3

 

3.  Part A

 

Research and personal observation confirm that most couples report experiencing oppositional or negative feelings, and at times acting upon them by exploiting, abusing, or injuring their partner. When couples have a disagreement or fight, physical and mental abuse is practiced by men more than by women in the majority of societies and cultures. When people reason under the influence of exploitative motivations, they tend to misinterpret the intentions of their partner and tend to use stereotyped, inaccurate, and prejudiced thinking. Our verbal behavior will reflect this style of biased thinking. So will our other actions.

 

There is an advantage in gaining control over our gender behavior in the three domains--affective, cognitive, and sensorimotor. We can avoid those cultural and psychological traits and habits that interfere with adaptive, successful long term marriage relationships. The benefits of a stable successful long term partnership are extremely attractive. We will explore a particular principle in marriage relationship called the conjoint self.

 

According to the "unity" model of marriage, the perfection of unity in a marriage increases through differentiation and reciprocity of behavior in the threefold self of the two partners, and is a spiritual union that lasts to eternity. In a unity marriage, the husband and wife develop a conjoint self, while their former individual self recedes into the background and no longer operates.

 

The unity marriage is not achieved by promise or desire alone. There are developmental levels of unity that married partners must go through with each other, like a growth process that takes many years of dedicated effort. The "conjoint self" refers to a husband and wife who have achieved unity at all levels of the threefold self (as explained below). Each individual has been changed, dropping off some traits and acquiring new ones that can fit together. This is called growing together in reciprocity. The husband has to abandon some traits he cherished since childhood because these habits caused opposition and disunity. The wife has to abandon some traits that she perceives do not fit with her husband's character. Both have to acquire new traits that could fit together as a unit. The old traits that were abandoned and the new traits that were acquired consist of sensorimotor, cognitive, and affective traits in the threefold self. That is: habits of external activities, habits of thinking, and habits of internal feeling.

 

Levels of unity are ordered from external to more and more interior unity, as will be explained below. For instance, an external level of unity between marital partners involves their sensorimotor portion of the threefold self. They like and enjoy to do things together like dancing, touching each other, partying, camping, watching movies, eating out, driving, talking about their favorite topics, and so on. These overt "external" activities involve sensory and motor interactions, including verbal, which is an overt motor activity. Of course every sensorimotor activity involves thinking and feeling but these cognitive and affective operations are not visible, and the focus of the two partners at this stage is on the external activity of the other. There is less focus or concern on what the other is thinking or feeling.

 

Note that these joint external activities do not necessarily mean that the two partners are in agreement with each other's way of thinking, each other's attitudes, or feelings and motivations. The cognitive and affective self of each partner may not be in agreement, and they may even be competitive or hostile to the other. What is on the inside that is not visible (affective and cognitive self) may be in opposition and even hatred against the partner, while what shows on the outside--the sensory-motor activity, may appear harmonious and compatible. This underlying disagreement or dislike becomes visible when there is an overt fight during which the two partners show their anger, resentment, and disrespect for one other. Afterwards they make up, and the cognitive disrespect and affective dislike recede again into the underlying invisible state, lurking there, until the next fight at which time the abuse and disrespect come out again.

 

There is therefore a first level of the conjoint self, and this is external, involving sensorimotor reciprocity and joint achievement, without necessarily there being an interior agreement and respect for the partner. Women, more than men, tend to experience this external phase of the relationship as unsatisfactory, painful, and injurious. Women often have to bond with other women to support and reassure each other during this phase of disharmony with their husband or partner.

 

Men tend to bond with other men by complaining about women and speaking about them with disrespect. They also keep secrets from their women and do things they want to hide from them. Men do this in order to obtain sexual favors. This deception is a method of exploiting women and dehumanizing them. At this external level of unity, men feel more comfortable than women because they exercise more control in the relationship. Men tend to resist closer, more intimate relationship phases, in order to maintain their cognitive and affective independence. A man ordinarily dislikes giving up independence in his private thinking and feeling, while a woman is generally motivated to conjoin her thinking and feeling with her man--if only he lets her. A woman strives to achieve mutual and reciprocal dependence, while a man strives to retain independence. This creates a conflict dynamic between them, especially in the first level of unity which is external, involving the sensorimotor self only.

 

This intrinsic difference between women and men occurs at all levels of their humanity: biological, mental, and spiritual. Biologically, women make themselves dependent on men for reproduction, parenting, and lifestyle habits. Mentally, women love and enjoy the man's intelligence and inventiveness, and adopt his ideas and philosophies as her own. Spiritually, women represent inner wisdom surrounded by external love. Men represent inner love surrounded by external intelligence. Women and men are thus born reciprocals of each other, so they may better fit into a perfect unity.

 

If women and men were similar in these fundamental traits, they could only form external relationships and could never achieve the married state of the conjoint self. Their selves would remain separate because like cannot conjoin with like. Like can be adjoined to like, but only reciprocals can conjoin. For example, think of the shape of reciprocals and how they would not be able to fit together if they were similar instead of reciprocal: pot and handle; key and key hole; shoe and lace; button and button hole, snaps, window and window sill, picture and frame, etc.

 

Couples begin their relationship together by sensorimotor reciprocity: talking to each other, eating, dancing, driving, doing fun things, etc. This is the first level of unity.


 

3.  Part B

 

The second level of unity is deeper in that it involves the cognitive self of the two partners. This includes how they think, how they reason, how they justify things, what they consider acceptable or unacceptable, what information or knowledge they have, what philosophy of life and religion. These cognitive behaviors and habits are more resistant to mutual adaptation and reciprocity in the relationship. For instance, a man and a woman can be married for years and yet maintain contradictory attitudes, beliefs, and judgments. The external sensorimotor level of unity does not necessarily lead to a more interior unity of thinking and reasoning (cognitive habits). Yet many couples achieve a cognitive level unity by joint involvement in running a home and raising children together. They see 'eye to eye' on many things and enrich each other's thinking process by mutual stimulation and interest. When a man and a woman achieve this second level unity, they can love each other more deeply and the relationship continues to grow and become more satisfying and enriching.

 

Achieving cognitive reciprocity is often easier for women because they are mentally oriented towards conjunction. They desire to become a conjoint self more than they desire to retain their own ideas and philosophy. But men generally are in love with their own thinking and ideas and resist change for the sake of the conjoint self. Men see the conjoint self as giving up selfhood while women see it as gaining togetherness.

 

However, when a wife perceives that her husband's thinking is corrupt, she tries to change the man's thinking instead of adopting it for herself. A wife has a keen perception of what is her husband's corrupt thinking, even while he himself is blind to it. This is because spiritually, a woman is inner wisdom covered over with love, while a man is inner love covered over with external intelligence. So a woman perceives more with her inner wisdom while a man with his outward intelligence. Inner wisdom can see corrupted thinking where outward intelligence cannot. Outward intelligence is motivated by sensorimotor goals while inner wisdom is motivated by affective goals. But when the husband's allows his outward intelligence to be influenced by the wife's inner wisdom, his outward intelligence is elevated or made more excellent, so that he too can then perceive corrupt thinking in himself and others.

 

The inmost level of unity involves the partners' affective self -- their feelings, motivations, loves, ultimate goals of happiness and togetherness. Affective reciprocity is the basis of an eternal unity between husband and wife. Only conjoint feelings, loves, desires, or goals are allowed to remain operational in their mind. This is achieved by a systematic and long term effort in reciprocal growth. The partners abandon their feelings, loyalties, goals, or involvements that are not conjoint and exclude the other partner. Affective reciprocity or conjunction would be weakened if one partner reserves an area of their mind or involvement that excludes the other partner. For example, some husbands spend socializing time with male friends. The activity is such that they don't want wives or girl friends around, even if they are not cheating on them or doing something bad. But the fact that a husband's wife is excluded, not wanted there, means that he is retaining independent involvements and loves. These affective habits and enjoyments are not reciprocal. They do not contribute to unity in marriage, but slows the process down or acts against it.

 

However, this principle does not apply to women in the same way. Women have loyalties and friendships with each other for different goals and feelings than men have with each other. The affections and involvements that married women have with other women is for supporting the marriage, not resisting it. Men have an inborn resistance to marital unity which they have to fight against most of their life. Their male friendships that exclude the wife respond to their desire to escape total unity with their wife. This is not so with married women since they have an inborn desire and need for total unity with their husband.

 


 

 

4.  Unity Through Reciprocity and Differentiation

 

Section 4

 

There are two principles in this model of "conjugial love" described by Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772).

  • First Principle--Differentiation:  No part of a woman is like any part of a man and vice versa.
  • Second Principle--Reciprocity:  The perfection of unity increases with the diversity of its composing elements.
  • Third Principle--Eternity: The unity marriage relationship is eternal, continuing in the afterlife of heaven.

According to the first principle of marital unification the threefold self of men and women are biologically and spiritually different. This is maximum or total differentiation or diversity in every  part. According to the second principle of marital unification, the diversity becomes unified through reciprocity by which the traits of a woman can harmonize or fit together with the traits of a man, and vice versa. According to the third principle, marriage is a spiritual union of mind and spirit that is not just for this world -- "till death do us part," but is eternal, since the spirit of a person is immortal (for more on this topic see the Psych 459, G21 Lecture Notes on Theistic Psychology:  www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic ). 

 

Here are some illustrations of these two principles acting together. Consider where we are familiar with unity through differentiation and reciprocity (though not with eternity). At the physical level we can see how a bolt, nut, and washer work together structurally to achieve a tight grip on some object. The form of the nut must fit exactly the form of the bolt. The bolt is different in form from the nut, and it is the particular way they are different that makes them work together, reciprocally. They would not work together as a unit if there was no differentiation and reciprocity between them. Consider the same principle operating in other functionally related objects like a hammer and nail, or like a purse and its strap, or a fork and knife, or glove and hand, show and foot, etc. When you dance, your partner must make the reciprocal steps -- not the same steps, as you are making, or else you step on each other. In a four-part harmony with men and women, in a quartet or other choir, the singers are differentiated into soprano, alto, tenor, and base. This differentiation is combined into a unity when they sing reciprocally according to the arrangement prescribed for each part. The result is a harmony that is rich and attractive but which cannot be achieved in any other way.

 

In the sensorimotor domain of gender interactions we can see how a woman's body is differentiated from a man's body, and how the parts of the man are shaped to fit the parts of the woman. No doubt this is the analogy upon which electrical objects are designated, as for  instance the wall receptacle is called the female and the plug is called the male. They act together to form a unit through differentiation and reciprocity of physical form or shape. When you consider sports teams, government departments, or armies, you notice a similar reciprocity of different role behaviors, so that they can achieve joint action, unity, or several acting as one. In fact throughout nature, and even the universe, you will find a unified whole made of differentiated parts acting in synergy. It makes sense therefore to have a model of gender unity that is based on the two acting as one through differentiation and reciprocity.

 

A well known symbolic representation of sensorimotor unity is the familiar Ying/Yang emblem. According to ancient tradition, it  "demonstrates the perfectly balanced interchange of the two dynamically opposed forces of the Universe, the dot represents integration." In Tai Chi and I Ching traditions, the white area of the emblem represents heaven, the dark area earth and the curvy line between them represents the Law or reality. In Feng Shui the Yin/Yang represents the integration of Female/Male duality: "Yin and Yang are dependent opposites that must always be in balance." And: "It is a duality that cannot exist without both parts." (See for example this Web site:  www.168fengshui.com/Articles/Article_yinyang.htm

 

In other words, it is the differentiation that makes the unity out of reciprocity. The man and the woman as a couple can be totally integrated, or form a unity, because they are completely different but in a way that is reciprocal. Nothing of the male can be like anything of the female (Yin/Yang diagram shows all white vs. all black for the two). But they curve around into each other, in a perfect fit of reciprocal union, the perfect circle. This is the principle of "synergy" which is defined as "combined action or operation." It comes from the Greek "synergos" or  working together. In business "synergism" refers to "a mutually advantageous conjunction or compatibility of distinct business participants or elements (as resources or efforts)" (Merriam-Webster Online). The principle of synergy operates universally where separate elements interact to produce a joint goal. Synergy is obvious in the physical body where thousands of separate and differentiated parts work together to produce the functions of a normal human body.

 

Society is viewed as made of separate and unique family units forming themselves into a community and abiding by mutual norms, laws, and expectations. The same reasoning applies to the marriage relationship which society officially sanctions and licenses. Society recognizes that a married couple forms a new unit that acts together for common goals and are united by positive feelings and loyalties. Married couples who live according to the unity model represent the most perfect unit or a "one" that a man and a woman can form together. Affective unity is the most essential, and it influences the cognitive and sensorimotor unity that is possible for that couple. Unity is achieved through the synergy of the threefold self of each partner acting together. There is no independence in any area or under any circumstance. Even when the two are in physically different locations (e.g., at home vs. at work) they remain united because each partner acts and thinks when alone as if the other were present.

 

A different approach is that of "equity model" in marriage. This idea is transmitted in our socialization process and is part of our culture so that everyone has norms of equity in various areas of living. This is a good thing in public life because it acts to reduce discrimination against women which has been the traditional practice and still is by and large. Gender relationships may start with men assuming traditional dominant roles and women being submissive. But the relationship can then move on to the equity model which helps the two partners by reducing the traditional load of expected work on women and can make their relationship more intimate. But the equity model need not be the last phase. The couple can then move into the unity model which affords still more intimacy.

 

In the unity model there are two possible directions, one valid the other destructive. If equity is given up for unity, which of the two partners should be giving up their equal power under equity? If the woman gives up equity, then the couple falls back into the traditional dominance model they started with in which man dominates woman in socially prescribed ways. On the other hand if the man gives up equity power in decision making, then they move forward to the unity model that leads to greater intimacy, growth, and mutual support. This conclusion will be reviewed in detail in our class discussions throughout the semester.

 


 

 

5,  Sensorimotor, Cognitive, and Affective Conjunction

 

Section 5

 

5.  Part A

 

Consider the cognitive and affective domains of gender interaction in marriage. For instance, a wife's depth of perception of a situation (her affective self) contrasts with that of a man's, but the difference is such as to be reciprocal with it. But if the man feels competitive with her, as in the traditional and equity models, their difference in perception is then nonreciprocal, incompatible, or opposite. Similarly, a woman's cognitive self complements that of a man, which is why they find each other's ideas interesting and stimulating. A man ordinarily resists the idea that the woman who loves him has a deeper perception of his feelings and motivations than he has himself. Women have this greater awareness of feelings than men due to the confluence of biology, socialization, experience, interest, and spiritual structure.  Hence the unity through reciprocity model requires that the man give up equity power and give in to the woman's way of understanding. This means that the man would voluntarily agree to let the woman play the lead role in decision making when it comes to their relationship areas.

 

For example, a wife might request that her husband no longer talk to an old girl friend of his. She feels very strongly about it. She perceives it  from within, as if it was instinct. In other words, she may not be able to give a rational explanation of where it comes from or why she feels so strongly about it. She tells her husband all this, yet he rejects it because he thinks differently about it. He feels a certain loyalty to many of his old friends and doesn't want to give that up, especially since she can't explain her demand in a way that makes sense to him. He and his old girl friend do not have any romantic feelings for each other,  so his wife (or current girl friend) should not be jealous. So they argue.

 

This stand off puts a hold on the inward (affective) growth of the relationship. She may not say this to him, and sometimes she may not be clearly aware of it, but within herself she knows that the relationship is not growing deeper. She hopes it can be amended but for now it's like a broken leg you can't use for walking. She feels neutralized by her partner's independent stance. He has excluded her and taken away her right or opportunity to make him change his stand into reciprocity, conjunction, unity, oneness in mind and body. He is keeping an area of his love sealed off to her. He reserves his affectional territory for something in which she has no direct input. She is kept on the outide.

 

This situation can be better understood if we look at it in more detail as to what's going on. In their relationship the man and the woman are interacting at the three levels of the self: sensorimotor, cognitive, and affective. The process of forming a marital unity involves the conjunction of the threefold self of each partner. The sensorimotor self of the man and the woman are conjoined first as shown by the activities they enjoy doing together--eating, playing, embracing, talking. These activities involve mostly the "external" physical self of the partners. It is called external because it is easily visible to them and to others like friends, parents, and neighbors. We can call this phase sensorimotor conjunction. In this phase the man often takes the lead and exerts a dominant role. The woman follows in order to keep the relationship going. Her motive is higher than the man's. His motive is to please himself; her motive is to continue the relationship going to a deeper level.

 

At the same time the cognitive self of the two partners are interacting. At this level of the interaction, the woman takes the lead. She strives to take the man's perspective, to learn his sense of humor, to memorize the details of his life that he reveals, to acquire the reasoning style he uses. Her motive in all this cognitive effort is to harmonize with the man and please him. She understands instinctively, and sometimes explicitly or consciously, that by making him laugh and pleasing him by how she thinks, she will succeed in conjoining the man to herself. The man is normally focused on himself, on his ideas, and he is pleased when she demonstrates that she knows those ideas. He is not thinking of her perspective, while she is constantly trying to analyze his perspective. Obviously, this differential effort and focus gives the woman a superior perception and understanding of the relationship, that is, of the process of conjoining. This cognitive communication of ideas between them can be called cognitive conjunction.

 

Cognitive conjunction is more visible than affective conjunction because it comes out in their agreements or disagreements. Long after sensorimotor conjunction has been established, and after cognitive conjunction has been operating for awhile in the relationship, the woman strives even more intensely to conjoin the man to herself at the affective level. She understands from instinct, and sometimes explicitly or consciously, that the relationship won't be perfect until they achieve affective conjunction. This doesn't just mean saying "I love you" even if it is meant sincerely. Affective conjunction means that the man has aligned his feelings with his woman. In other words he has given up his male prerogatives left to him by society and tradition. Society allows a man to retain affective independence from the woman he is married to. He is expected to provide for her needs, to support her in her endeavors, and to be decent to her. But he is not expected to become dependent on her for his feelings, motives, ambitions. He is expected to lover her and be loyal to her, but not to give up his own independent feelings and strivings. Affective independence is the norm for a man in most societies.

 

In contrast, social and cultural norms require a woman not only to love her mate but to be dependent on him for her feelings and emotions. For example, if she loves Italian food and he hates it, she is expected to give up her old loves and adopt his loves. He expects it and sees it as a sign of loyalty to him. If she complies with this expectation, he feels bonding with her. Note that a man feels bonding or conjunction when the woman becomes dependent on him in her threefold self. But this kind of bonding is not true conjunction and cannot lead to unity.

 

5.  Part B

 

In the region of the heart, woman rises far above the man in perception, understanding, and consciousness. This is the result of her biological, rational, and spiritual nature. Therefore the gender syntax that produces unity involves the husband becoming affectively dependent on the wife. This runs contrary to his socialization and philosophy, so he puts up enormous resistance--that the woman has to overcome if they are going to achieve unity. Both men and women have three natures or levels of operation of life: a biological nature or self, a rational nature or self, and a spiritual nature or self. By the principle of differentiation and reciprocity it is clear that men and women differ in their biological nature, they differ in their rational nature, and they differ in their spiritual nature. Biological differences between them are obvious in the anatomy and appearance of their physical body. Rational differences between men and women result in the reciprocal orientation and focus they each have.  When a man's cognitive focus is reciprocal to the woman's cognitive focus, they can conjoin. To conjoin means that they share parts of it, or all of it.

 

But sharing doesn't mean that they are similar because a man and a woman have different functions for their thinking. A woman might say or think X and a man might say or think X yet they are not thinking the identical thing. A woman uses thinking in the relationship for the purpose of achieving unity because that's the way she defines herself, while a man uses his thinking for the purpose of retaining independence because that's the way he defines himself. He wants her to give up her cognitive independence and think like him. This is impossible for nothing in a man can be like anything in a woman, and vice versa. On the other hand, he can give up his affective independence so that his thinking now responds not just to his own needs and purposes, but to her needs and purposes as well. In this way the man's thinking is elevated to a new level of consciousness, intelligence, and wisdom. But when he refuses to give up his affective independence, his thinking remains where it has always been, unable to achieve the higher levels of his own humanity. It's obvious therefore that "giving up" affective independence is not losing something but gaining a whole new level of life for a man.

 

When a husband is committed to giving up affective independence, he is conjoined to his wife at the inmost or affective level. This is a spiritual conjunction that lasts forever. It has a built in dynamics for dissolving disagreements. Not a single disagreement can arise between them no matter what. This is because they have learned a reciprocal style of interacting at all three levels of the self.

 

Sensorimotor conjunction is the mental state of husband and wife in which their sensations and movements are mutually and reciprocally interdependent. The pleasures they enjoy are connected to making the partner happy. For instance, what the husband enjoys most is to keep his wife feeling comfortable, and her desires or preferences satisfied. Sensorimotor independence exists when the husband insists on his own comforts and pleasures. His focus is then on himself, not his wife. It's common to observe in public couples walking together. More often than not you will see the woman carrying a greater load than the man. Maybe a child and a big bag, while the man has his hands free. Or at airports you see the woman carry two big bags and the man she is with is carrying one bag. These interactions result from the man's sensorimotor independence. Often husbands will satisfy their sexual appetites for years and never care enough to discover anything about his wife's appetites or satisfactions.

 

It helps to contrast clearly the differences between the affective and sensorimotor parts of the threefold self. Often people use the word "feeling" when they mean thinking (cognitive self), and vice versa. For example, people say, "I feel that we should wait longer" when they are discussing what they think. Sometimes feelings (affective) are confused with sensations (sensorimotor). For example, "I feel hot flashes coming on" or "I feel so tired." In both cases it is not the feelings (affective) that are discussed but the sensations (sensorimotor).

 

The sensorimotor area of the threefold self includes these primary features of our everyday life:

  • physical pleasures (all five senses), or their opposites

  • enjoyable sensations and movements, or their opposites

  • mental pleasures and delightful experiences, or their opposites

  • healthy well being and feeling good physically, or the opposite

  • being physically attracted to someone, or the opposite

  • feeling calm, cool, and collected, or the opposite

  • coordinating one's movements with partner, or the opposite

  • etc.

 

 

The affective area of the threefold self includes these primary features of our everyday life:

  • feeling good about the situation, or the opposite

  • feeling hesitant or resistant, or the opposite

  • feeling afraid or scared, or the opposite

  • feeling connected, or the opposite

  • striving to reach a goal, or the opposite

  • accepting someone or thing, or the opposite

  • perceiving (feeling, sensing) from within that something is right and good, or not

  • feeling guilty, embarrassed, ashamed, regretful, or not

  • etc.

 

Do you get the difference? Note that the affective always comes first in the sequence of our behavior. We do something because we are motivated to do it. We are motivated to do something to achieve a particular goal. Every goal is defined by what we want or desire or prefer to happen. Therefore all human action starts from a feeling -- what we want to happen, together with a goal that satisfies what we want.

 

5.  Part C

 

Once we have a feeling, motive, or particular goal we desire to happen, the next behavior in sequence is the cognitive self. Our thinking operations suddenly begin to figure out a plan or method of proceeding that will bring about the desired goal, and thereby satisfy the feeling. It is the feeling that motivates, guides, and directs the thinking, keeping the sequence of mental operation focused in a coherent way to lead to the goal state. For example, we become aware that we are thinking about the candy bar in our pocket or purse. What made your thoughts go in that direction? It had to be some kind of feeling, like sensing hunger in the stomach (sensorimotor) which became the occasion for a desire to satisfy it. This desire or feeling then awakened our thoughts and memories to think about the candy bar.

 

Once the feeling (desire) and the thinking (candy bar in pocket or purse) are placed together or united, the hand starts reaching for the candy bar or the legs start waking to the kitchen (sensorimotor).

 

But then you stop the hand or the legs. Wait. I'm on a diet and I want to lose weight. Remember? What's happening here? It's another feeling (desire, motive) that takes over and this new feeling now directs the thinking and the moving in another direction.

 

So whatever we do all day long minute by minute, has to do with sequences and loops of feelings, thoughts, and sensorimotor executions of them. By self-witnessing or self-monitoring ourselves in a systematic and persistent way,  we gradually learn to distinguish between the actions of the threefold self and how the affective hierarchy of our feelings dominates and rules our thinking and doing. Most people prior to self-witnessing are not fully aware of the feelings they have and their relative hierarchy of power over the threefold self. What we don't know about ourselves, we cannot control or modify even if they are maladaptive and the source of negative results. It is to everyone's advantage to get to know the hierarchy of feelings they have in the course of their day.

 

Here is a summary table to memorize:

 

PRINCIPLES BY WHICH HUSBAND GOVERNS HIS BEHAVIOR
TOWARDS HIS WIFE

CHARACTER OF THE PARTNERSHIP

HOW THEY BEHAVE TOWARDS ONE ANOTHER AND CONSEQUENCES ON WIFE

follows the
UNITY
MODEL
affective
conjunction

spiritual
marriages

("Till endless eternity in afterlife")

reciprocity with differentiation
unifying, conjoining
rational , theistic
enlightened, etc.

husband chooses to always act from his wife’s feelings and preferences,
rather than from his own, which might be different,
thereby unifying the two into one conjoined self in heaven

follows the
EQUITY
MODEL
cognitive
conjunction

natural progressive
marriages

(“Till death do us part”)

agreeing with
contracting with
associating with
co-sponsoring, etc.

the two make up consensual arrangements,
based on equal rights principles,
so husband agrees to help in domestic activities,
but maintains independence where he chooses,
so many women are stuck in unhappy roles and unromantic, unfulfilling marriages

follows the
DOMINANCE
MODEL
sensorimotor
conjunction

natural traditional
marriages

(“Till the husband decides to divorce his wife”)

consociation by male dominated norms,
and race, family, blood, religion, genes – are central issues

wife is submissive and obedient to husband and his family ,
and must endure societal sanctioned abuse of women by men

 

See if you can follow the themes in each cell in the above Table. Try to see how these names and descriptions apply to your experience with couples, partnerships, and marriages:

  • yourself

  • parents

  • friends

  • movies

  • song lyrics

  • jokes

  • group practices, norms, and expectations.

 

Review what you know about each of these. Are the Table cells helpful in organizing and characterizing what you are observing when you examine these areas of daily life?

 

As you continue studying the following Sections, be sure to integrate them in your mind with this Table. You actually need to integrate all the Tables in these Lecture Notes, and then you will see clearly how all this perspective can give you a rational understanding of marriage. You might want to print out just the Tables, and study them together, trying to integrate them into your understanding.


 

 

5.1  Sexuality: Love of the Sex vs. Love of One of the Sex


Section 5.1
 

Selection from :  www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic/ch6.htm#sex

 

5.1  Part A

 

Sexuality is a key issue in most people's lives and is an important topic in any society. For example, in the number one word in frequency that millions of people are looking up every day on the Web is "sex." If you type in sex in the top ranked Web search engine, www.google.com , you get an astonishing 250 million registered Web pages. The word "God" receives 61 million hits, which is pretty impressive to me, compared to "food" which receives 100 million hits. Just to get a real contrast the word "psychology" receives 14 million hits, the word "mother" receives 38 million, and "money is listed on 106 million Web site. "Patriotism" has less then one million, and "morality" has over 2 million. "Rationality" has about half of one million and "Swedenborg" receives a little over 100,000 hits.

 

Why does the topic of sex arouse so much passionate interest everywhere? The topical frequency of occurrence measure reflects the mental frequency of occurrence. A hot issue in society is a hot issue in the minds of the majority of people in a community or nation. The hot issue in our mind about sex is caused by the love of the sex that is built into the affective organ of every mind, a different way for males than for females. Scientific revelations in the Writings about human sexuality are both fascinating and tremendously useful to society and to individuals.

 

Theistic psychology distinguishes two forms of sexuality, one heavenly the other hellish. This may sound intolerant and bigoted from the perspective of today's diversified attitudes toward sexual behavior, but when you examine it within the positive bias perspective, it will be seen that this account is both rational and objective, not judgmental. At the level of religion, the basis for prohibited sex is dogma or doctrine based on the literal meaning of Sacred Scripture. But when you reconstruct the scientific sense of Sacred Scripture there emerges the universal principle that everything in the human mind, without exception, originates either from heaven or hell. Within this context, saying that every sexual behavior and quality originates either from hell or heaven, is not dogmatic or prudish, but objective and rational. Sexuality follows the same universal principles as do all human behavior characteristics.

 

Now we need to discover what features of sexuality are from hell and what from heaven. Again, it will be seen that only objective criteria are used, not judgmental or dogmatic. Since hell and heaven are both in every person's mind, our sexuality originates in our own mind. But we would not be able to have any sexuality without "influx" from the vertical community (see Section xx). Every hellish trait and every heavenly trait in our mind is similarly dependent on influx. Since the spiritual world = the mental world (see Section xx), all human traits, both hellish and heavenly, are shared in common by the human race. The sexuality of one individual is nevertheless unique because every person adapts the pool of pan-human traits to oneself in a unique way.

 

During character reformation, or spiritual development, we must investigate our traits and decide with each if it is hellish or heavenly, then reject the one and accept the other. In this manner we take progressive steps toward our regeneration, which refers to the preparation of a conscious character that can live in heaven to eternity. The trait of sexuality also needs to be examined in ourselves, a task that lasts a lifetime on earth. The following diagram can be helpful in distinguishing between heavenly traits of sexuality and hellish. Sexual behavior and attitude are closely linked to selfishness and altruism.

 

The Writings tell us that the hellish aspects of sexuality are activated by a ranking built-in and inherited motive called the "love of the sex," while the heavenly aspects of sexuality are activated by a ranking built-in and inherited motive called the "love of one of the sex." Be sure to carefully contrast these two expressions. I had to look at them many times before they stopped looking similar:

 

the love of the sex (hellish) vs. the love of one of the sex (heavenly)

 

To understand the precise difference we need to focus on "sex" vs. "one." To love sex is to love the activity, while to love one of the sex, is to love a person sexually. Quite a difference!

 

The love of the sex is a mental operation in the affective organ of the corporeal mind, the lowest part of the natural mind which we also share with animals. The love of the sex by humans is very similar to the love of the sex by animals. Atheistic biology and medicine view all sex in these terms. But theistic psychology cannot view all of sexuality at those limited levels of the mind, since the operations of the affective organ are ranked in a hierarchy of distinct degrees--natural, spiritual, and celestial. In the lowest portion of the natural mind sexuality is indiscriminate, non-exclusive, and temporary because it is determined by the love of the sex, which is the love of sex regardless of situation or condition. The attitude behind the love of the sex is exploitative because it is tied to the love of self and the world for the sake of self and the world. There is no love of others for the sake of others--which may be called altruistic sex.

 

The selfish sex of a husband is a sensorimotor coupling with his wife but it is not conjunctive. It is a natural-sensuous experience for him and does not go deeper than his physical pleasure. This kind of sexual activity by a husband is indiscriminate, promiscuous, pornographic, and unchaste. It is not personal with his wife. Sex therapists in atheistic psychology prescribe or approve of fantasizing being with someone else while making love to one's spouse. Some even recommend pornographic videos to stimulate and "revitalize" the passion of the married couple for each other. This kind of therapy or advice ignores the internal-spiritual consequences of approving non-exclusive sex thoughts.

The unity model of marriage leads the partners into a spiritual-sensual sexuality which is modeled after the celestial marriage they are going to enjoy together in heaven in eternity. The delights and pleasures of conjugial love are immeasurably greater and more passionate than the pleasures of natural-sensuous sexuality. Swedenborg conversed about this with both husbands and wives in the heavens and it is  they themselves who reported this wonderful intensity of their sexuality. This is not something Swedenborg invented or theorized about. It is noteworthy that Swedenborg was never married in this life, yet he was commissioned by Divine-Human to write the scientific revelations of sexuality in the book of the Writings called Conjugial Love (1768). I speculate that the reason Swedenborg didn't get to get married on earth was brought about Providentially so that he could report on the subject of marriage without personal subjective experience of it in this world. He was led in this way to rely exclusively on his objective observations of married couples in the spiritual world and on their own self-witnessing reports of their feelings and thoughts.

 

In the spiritual-sensuous portion of our mind, sexuality is entirely different from that in our natural-sensuous mind.. At the spiritual level of rational consciousness sexuality consists of the love of one of the sex and is closely tied to the love of others for the sake of others. The love of one of the sex in the affective organs of the spiritual and celestial mind is exclusive, monogamous, and eternal. It builds and solidifies unity between husband and wife so that externally they appear as one individual. The love of one of the sex cannot operate below the spiritual and celestial levels. This spiritual sexuality can be acquired by elevating one's rational consciousness by means of Sacred Scripture. But there is an important difference between the religious and the scientific levels of  thinking about it. Religion specifies what sexual behaviors are permissible and which ones are prohibited. For instance, virginity, monogamy and fidelity in marriage are presented as Commandments of God that must be obeyed at the risk of displeasing God or going to hell. This is strongly motivating though it becomes less powerful if we reject heaven and hell, as so many people do when they are not offered scientific proof of their existence.

 

In theistic psychology heaven and hell are given a scientific status and rational description. Therefore it becomes more difficult to merely reject or dismiss the religious prohibitions against the love of the sex. As we elevate our mind above the literal meaning of Sacred Scripture to theistic science, we discover the scientific details with which we can assess our own sexuality. This gives the opportunity to choose objectively in freedom by means of rational understanding. This is the spiritual level of understanding sexuality. We can understand rationally that there are two intense and passionate forms of sex we can have. One is natural-sensuous, the other is spiritual sensuous. The natural-sensuous sex we have is non-exclusive and feels good with many, not just with one person. The spiritual-sensuous sex we have is exclusive and feels good with only one chosen person. All thoughts, fantasies, and desires for other partners in sex are seen as threats to our monogamous and exclusive sexual relation.

 

In movies and novels this theme is often reflected contrastively with men and women, men being shown as promiscuous and unchaste, while their girlfriends or wives are chaste and exclusive. Often the women are portrayed as feeling jealous and threatened when the man shows a sexual interest in others. It is known therefore that women love monogamy and exclusivity in sex while men do not love that, and have to force themselves to be faithful in act or thought. Eventually the men also love exclusivity in sex when they begin to bond internally with their wife. Even then the husbands may feel attraction and excitement of the non-exclusive type of the love of the sex. The Writings advise and warn that husbands should be very careful to reject these natural-sensuous thoughts and desires when they occur. It's not their occurrence that should be addressed (over which we may have no control), but the rejection of them when they occur in our mind. If we do not actively and explicitly reject them in our mind, we are allowing them in, and since they are pleasurable and delightful, we love them, and the loves we accept we can never give up.

Quoting from the Writings:

CL 48. Love of the sex is love towards many of the sex and with many; but conjugial love is love towards one of the sex and with one. Love towards many and with many is a natural love, for man has it in common with beasts and birds, and these are natural; but conjugial love is a spiritual love and peculiar and proper to humans, because humans were created and are therefore born to become spiritual. Therefore, so far as we become spiritual, we put off love of the sex and put on conjugial love. In the beginning of marriage, love of the sex appears as if conjoined with conjugial love; but in the progress of marriage, they are separated, and then, with those who are spiritual, love of the sex is expelled and conjugial love insinuated, while with those who are natural, the opposite is the case. From what has now been said, it is evident that love of the sex, being a love shared with many and in itself natural, yea, animal, is impure and unchaste; and being a roving and unlimited love, is scortatory; but it is wholly otherwise with conjugial love. (CL 48).

Note that the love of one of the sex is called "conjugial love." Non-exclusive sexual relationships are referred to here as "love towards many and with many," and is called a "natural love." Animals have this love and so do we--in our natural mind. But higher up we have a spiritual love which animals do not have. Everything spiritual is based on rational consciousness which animals cannot possess, not having the mental physiology for it.  We become spiritual to the extent that we think rationally and abandon non-exclusive sexual relationships in favor of conjugial love. This makes sense since love of the sex keeps our consciousness in the natural mind where that affection operates. To raise our consciousness to the spiritual-rational level we must commit ourselves to conjugial love which is a love operating in our spiritual-natural mind, hence above the natural as heavenly things are above earthly things.

Note also that at the beginning of marriage we have the love of sex, but as we progress in spiritual-rational development, the natural love of sex in our mind is transformed into the spiritual love of one of the sex, or conjugial love. External marriages that do not have a spiritual dimension remain natural, but if a spiritual dimension develops, the natural love of sex is extinguished and conjugial love takes its place. This elevates our mind to the spiritual and celestial levels of operation. The love of sex is also called "roaming" because it is non-exclusive. For instance, husbands who are into pornographic entertainment remain in a natural love towards their wife because they are maintaining their sexuality as promiscuous or non-exclusive. It doesn't matter if they do not have physical sex with other women. If they desire it and enjoy the idea of it, accepting it as permissible, they are immersing their consciousness in a natural-sensuous and corporeal animal love. It is the same with husbands who fantasize having sex with another woman while they are having sex with their wife. And it is the same when they are having "phone sex" or "email sex" with others.


 

5.1  Part B

 

It is important to understand rationally what are the consequences of remaining in a natural state of sexuality and not progressing to a spiritual love of one's spouse.

Quoting from Conjugial Love 48:

CL 48. THAT AFTER DEATH, TWO MARRIED PARTNERS, FOR THE MOST PART, MEET, RECOGNIZE EACH OTHER, [AGAIN] CONSOCIATE, AND FOR SOME TIME LIVE TOGETHER; WHICH TAKES PLACE IN THE FIRST STATE, THAT IS, WHILE THEY ARE IN EXTERNALS AS IN THE WORLD. There are two states through which we pass after death, an external and an internal. We come first into our external state and afterwards into our internal. If both married partners have died, then, while in the external state, the one meets and recognizes the other, and if they have lived together in the world, they again consociate and for some time live together. When in this state, neither of them knows the inclination of the one to the other, this being concealed in their internals; but afterwards, when they come into their internal state, the inclination manifests itself, and if this is concordant and sympathetic, they continue their conjugial life, but if discordant and antipathetic, they dissolve it. (CL 48)

Swedenborg was able to observe that when married partners have both passed on they meet in the world of spirits and live again together in their external state, which means in the natural state in which they lived on earth. During this initial encounter neither of the two partners are aware of how they feel toward one another in their "interior" mind. They seem to get along and like each other on the surface, but deep down they may feel the opposite. The deeper feelings were hidden from their conscious awareness on earth, yet they were there, as shown by the fact that at times they did not get along, had fights, and expressed dislike and even hatred of one another. After awhile, the two partners are separated from their external feelings and they become conscious of their deeper or interior feelings. Now if these deeper feelings for one another are positive, they continue to live together forever, but if the deeper feelings are negative, they now separate and go their own way. 

What happens now to those who have harbored desires for other partners that they kept from coming to the surface? They now come out in their most intense form and one feels irresistibly drawn to others and away from the spouse. The married partners now find themselves separated from each other. It is the end of their marriage. But it is different with those who rejected their non-exclusive desires when they occurred throughout the marriage on earth. The unchaste desires were not suppressed and hidden from view or expression. They were judged as inappropriate and dangerous, even if delightful, like a hungry person who rejects a tasty meal knowing that the dish is poisoned. When this mental rejection is performed consistently and honestly throughout marriage on earth, we are liberated from the love of non-exclusive sex and enjoy the far greater pleasures and delights of conjugial sex. When we meet our conjugial partner in the other life we are able to enter heaven together and abide there forever.

When married partners who first meet in the world of spirits discover that they are internally unsuitable for each other,  they separate and then each meets another person with whom they can develop a conjugial love relationship, at which point, they enter heaven. Or, one may enter heaven while the other enters hell, or both can enter hell. In hell there are no conjugial love relationships because this requires a rational consciousness that is spiritual or celestial. In the hells of our mind we are corporeal-sensuous and  irrational, hence we cannot experience a rational love. Those in hell are compelled to live in a state of "concubinage" or "infernal marriage" with someone there whom they hate and despise. Definitely something that we would want to avoid, especially since, as Swedenborg observed, those in hell have absolutely no more any love of sex. The men loathe marriage and the idea of sex with the wife makes them violently nauseous. Some women in hell called "sirens" acquire the ability to make themselves look beautiful, virginal, and chaste. They set traps for men in hell who try to satisfy their never-ending lust for various types of sexual perversions or "degrees of degeneracy"--fantasies having to do with "deflowering virgins" and then abandoning them; or, seducing another man's wife; and many other weird things.

Here is a brief passage showing the controlled and experimental character of Swedenborg's reports on the spiritual world.  On this occasion he wanted to find out if there are men who are only interested in sex when they can seduce someone else's wife. A sample of men were brought to Swedenborg by his angel guides who were people from the highest portion of their mind called the third heaven and thus possessed super-powers relative to those who were lower in their mind. This is an amazing characteristic of the spiritual-mental world of rational ether (see Section xx). I underlined the phrase that shows the experimental condition used on this occasion.

CL 483. To this I shall add some facts from the spiritual world which are worth relating.

I heard there that some married men have a lust for promiscuity with inexperienced women or virgins, some for experienced women or whores; some for married women or wives; some for such women of noble families, and some for women of the lower classes. I have been convinced in that world of the truth of this by numerous examples from various kingdoms .

When I thought about the variety of such lusts, I asked whether there were men who seek all their pleasure with other men's wives and none with unmarried women. So to prove to me that there were, a number were brought to me from a certain kingdom, who were compelled to speak as their lustful nature dictated. These said that their sole pleasure and joy had been, and still was, to misbehave with other men's wives. They said that they picked out the beautiful ones for themselves, and hired them for as high a fee as their wealth allowed. For the most part they agreed the fee with the women alone.

I asked why they did not hire unmarried women. They said that this was too common for them, being inherently worthless and devoid of any pleasure. I asked again whether these wives afterwards went back to their husbands and lived with them. They replied that they either did not, or did so coldly, since they had become promiscuous.

I then asked them very seriously whether they had ever considered, or were now considering, that this was double adultery, since they did it while themselves married; and that such adultery robbed a person of all spiritual good. This caused many of those present to laugh, and they said, 'What is spiritual good?'

But I insisted and said, 'What is more detestable than to mix one's own soul in a wife with her husband's soul? Don't you know that a man's soul is in his semen?' At this they turned away and murmured, 'What harm does it do there?' At last I said, 'Although you are not afraid of God's laws, are you not afraid of the civil law?' 'No,' they answered, 'only of some of the clergy, but we keep this from them; and if we cannot, we keep on good terms with them.' Afterwards I saw them divided into groups, some of which were thrown into hell (CL 483):

The above experiment is a case of forced self-witnessing out loud. Here on earth today, the lie-detector is used by some companies and institutions when investigating personnel issues. The instrument makes physiological measurements of an individual's skin conductance (perspiration) and blood pressure, both being viewed as indicators of emotional reactions. The questions are phrased slowly and in different ways, relating the person to some act (e.g., "Did you know it was broken?" "Did he speak to you?"). GSR readings and blood pressure changes are recorded and later analyzed. A conclusion is then reached as to whether the individual was lying, not lying, or that one cannot tell from the results. The angelic guides who were assisting Swedenborg had a more effective technique available to them--they compelled them to answer as they think, making it impossible for them to say the opposite of the truth.


5.1  Part C

In the above passage Swedenborg portrays himself as indignant at their callous attitude. Swedenborg reminds them graphically that sexual intercourse with another man's wife mixes their semen with her husband's semen. But they obviously fail to be shocked at this image: "What harm does it do there?" Swedenborg was confronting them with the fact that they were flouting "God's law" because "a man's soul is in his semen."  This is explained in other places, namely that the semen carries not only the father's DNA but also a complete copy of his soul, which is a spiritual organ that receives the impulse of life and therefrom animates the body's physiology. In this soul are contained all the loves of the father, those that he himself inherited and those that he himself contributed. These inherited loves are both evil and good. They will all strive to come out into the mind and behavior of the offspring. They are visible or measurable in terms of innate capacities, impulsive tendencies, various weaknesses, and strong preferences.

The physical act of sexual intercourse is itself only a representative or an effect of a mental-spiritual act. This mental act is defined as contrary to "God's laws." The men in the passage above can only focus on the physical semen and see no consequences in having the semen of several men in a woman's vagina, like a prostitute who doesn't wash herself every time. Apart from the fact that sexually transmitted physical diseases come in this way, one must also consider the disorderly intentions and motives that cause the act, because these are spiritual events that have their consequences. Even if no immediate physical harm comes from seducing another's man's wife, there is spiritual harm to the mental organs of the man and woman. This spiritual harm is the result of intending against God's laws of spiritual order. There are built in and inevitable spiritual consequences to every disorderly mental act. Any mental act that is contrary to God's laws is a disorderly act. One of the items I hear on the news today is a new survey that shows that 40 percent of Americans say they have tried a "sex toy." This would be funny were it not so pathetic. It shows the impossibility of satisfying "roaming" love of sex. The biggest money maker ever for U.S. pharmaceutical companies is Viagra, a drug prescribed for men who can't have an erection at the appropriate time and women who lack "libido."

The limited clinical use of sex drugs is understandable but the use of it for the majority of physically normal men is an indication that the love of non-exclusive sex and pornography leads to mental impotence. The "roving" love of sex with many partners is a four-stage process. The first stage is that of being sexually active with multiple partners, physically, mentally, or both. The second stage is temporary loss of sexual interest. The third stage is resumption of roving and looking for other partners. This process recycles for some years, then it ends with the final stage: loss of interest in all sex, at first, and later, hatred of all sex.

These built in consequences and mechanisms must be understood rationally, or else one begins to question what is disorderly. If it's just some moral or religious dogma, I can skip it, but if it's a scientific physiological consequence, I better pay attention. At the end of the passage above we get an image of what these consequences are: "Afterwards I saw them divided into groups, some of which were thrown into hell." To be thrown into hell means, as explained elsewhere in the Writings, that they appear to throw themselves into hell out of anticipation and lust for the disorderly things they can do there. But they are certainly not counting on the fact that after a little time of wanton abandon and delights, their mental state changes to an endless cycle of emotions they hate--being deprived of their lusts, being persecuted and haunted by others there whom they cannot escape, and taking turns torturing each other endlessly.

Let's get back to the earlier passage discussed above regarding married partners who meet in the world of spirits. Continuing with that passage:

CL 48. If a man has had several wives, he conjoins himself with them in turn while in the external state; but when he enters the internal state, in which he perceives the nature of the inclinations of his love, he either takes one or leaves them all; for in the spiritual world as in the natural, no Christian is allowed to take more than one wife because this infests and profanes religion. The like happens with a woman who has had several husbands; women, however, do not adjoin themselves to their husbands but only present themselves, and their husbands adjoin them to themselves. It must be known that husbands rarely know their wives, but wives readily know their husbands. The reason is because women have an interior perception of love, and men only an exterior perception. (CL 48)

It's revealing to discover that husbands "rarely know their wives" when they meet up in the world of spirits, while wives recognize their husbands. This comes about because of a fundamental physiological difference in love between men and women. Men have an "exterior perception" of love while women have an "interior perception." Wives monitor the feelings of their husbands at a more interior level than husbands themselves are aware of their own loves. A man might say that he loves this or that, but his wife knows what he really loves or hates.

Continuing with the Number:

CL 48. BUT THAT SUCCESSIVELY, AS THEY PUT OFF THEIR EXTERNALS AND COME INTO THEIR INTERNALS, THEY PERCEIVE THE NATURE OF THE LOVE AND INCLINATION WHICH THEY HAD FOR EACH OTHER, AND HENCE WHETHER THEY CAN LIVE TOGETHER OR NOT. This need not be further explained since it follows from what has been set forth in the preceding article. Here it shall only be shown how, after death, a man puts off his externals and puts on his internals.

After death, every one is first introduced into the world which is called the world of spirits--which is in the middle between heaven and hell--and is there prepared, the good for heaven and the evil for hell. This preparation has for its end, that the internal and external may be concordant and make a one, and not be discordant and make two. (CL 48)

Here you can see that whether a man and a woman stay together to eternity is a matter of spiritual physiology and compatibility, just like antibodies act on other cells of the body to reject or accept. It's not a matter of subjective or arbitrary preference but is the inevitable consequence of the structure of the mind that each has formed for themselves while living on earth. What's remarkable is that there are two levels of structure, external and internal, and many people are not aware of their own inner structure. For instance, they are aware that they like this or that activity or experience, and desire to repeat it over and over, yet they are not aware of the interior feelings and delights that actually control the external likes and choices.

Think of the iceberg analogy here: We can see the external structure of the mountain of ice floating on the ocean, but we do not know how large the structure is below the surface, or what is its shape. Yet what is below the surface is far more important in determining the consequences. For instance, if a ship collides with the iceberg, whether it survives or not depends on the size of the iceberg below the surface. And other consequences that one can describe. In the same way the consequences of our inner feelings and motives, which we cannot see, are far more important for our future--whether we go to heaven or hell, whether we stay together or not, and other consequences that follow from these.


 

6.  Unity Model in Marriage:
Ennead Chart of Growth Steps

Section 6

 

6.  Part A

 

This is Table 1a (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

UNITY

7

8

9

EQUITY

4

5

6

DOMINANCE

1

2

3

 

All ennead charts are read from bottom up. This ennead chart ("ennead" = nine), shows that there are nine succeeding phases for achieving unity in marriage. Note that the nine cells are generated when you keep track of what happens to the threefold self of husband and wife as they progress towards unity. It would be very beneficial for you to memorize this chart so you can reproduced it on paper, and then mentally picture it as you think about these issues. Try to make a mental picture of the chart as you read the following explanations. If you make sure you fully understand it, you will be able to use the chart in your everyday thinking about relationships, your own, or those of others.

 

Note that that the changes are conceptualized in relation to the model or philosophy the partners have. The "dominance" model often describes the husband's attitude towards his wife, and this agrees with the prevailing cultural norms in most societies on this earth. Women are socialized to accept this male dominance perspective and many women come to see it as normal, and even good. Some women however, reject it. They demand that the husband switch to the "equity" model, which means that he can't just make decisions by himself for their joint life. They have to consult each other and resolve differences with a consensus with which both can live and feel comfortable.

 

First, the threefold self of the husband and wife must conjoin themselves at the usual dominance level -- zones 1, 2, 3. Then they can grow further together by conjoining their threefold self again, but under the equity model -- zones 4, 5, 6. Many husbands resist the equity model and prefer to go back to the dominance model. But if he changes his mind and adopts the new model for their interactions, then the couple can grow still further towards fully being conjoined in their threefold self. Eventually couples can move into the unity stages -- zones 7, 8, 9. This happens when the husband adopts a new way of interacting with his wife.

 

In the unity model of interaction (zones 7, 8, 9), the husband allows the wife's inner wisdom to lead his own outward intelligence. This must be voluntary on his part and occurs when he becomes spiritually enlightened from a desire to be conjoined eternally to his wife. He is willing to let go of his own self, for the sake of a new self called the conjoint self. With this new self he is no longer independent. He can no longer choose to act on his own. Whatever he does, think, or strive for, he consults his wife first.

 

The husband must therefore acquire an accurate knowledge of his wife's feelings and emotions. Once he has internalized them, he can consult them whenever he acts, decides, or wants something. He is no longer a single self or individual. He is a half-person by himself, and is completed reciprocally by his wife. Together, the husband and wife, make one complete human being. When a couple reaches this spiritual level of union, they are in their eternal conjugial bliss in heaven. This can start while they are in this life, and continue later, in the afterlife.

 

The wife cannot impose the unity model on her husband by means of dominance, intimidation, or persuasion. He can refuse to go along with her whenever he pleases. There are few husbands who are willing to voluntarily subordinate their own outward intelligence to the wife's inner wisdom. It's a model they can achieve only with the husband's willingness to undergo much mental pain and self-denial. But those husbands who are willing to undergo the change, can form a true and perfect reciprocal union with their wife. This is a spiritual state that lasts forever into the afterlife called "heaven." (For more information on this topic, you can consult the 459 Lecture Notes, on the Web at:  www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic

 

The first phase of each model (zones 1, 4, 7) involves the sensorimotor self of the two partners as the central focus of their relationship. Their affective and cognitive self subordinate themselves to the sensorimotor self as a couple. They get along fine and enjoy each other company, but only so long as they retain focus on the sensorimotor level. For instance, they do things together that involve their physical enjoyment and fun--eating, touching, holding, dancing, driving, playing games, watching movies, listening to music, talking, etc., and sometimes, dealing with children and their immediate physical needs.

 

In the dominance model (zones 1, 2, 3), the relationship is governed cognitively by tradition and affectively by reward and punishment. The two partners are only externally conjoined. Their life together as a unique couple centers on what choices they make together at the sensorimotor level (zone 1). Even if they are physically together, they are not together at the cognitive and affective levels of conjoining. They are separated or "disjoined" in their thinking and in their feeling. Their thinking is dictated by tradition and family. Their feeling is governed by being rewarded or punished by the other one, depending on what happens. It is normal in the traditional dominance model for a man and a woman to make love and feel close, then a little while later they can argue about something and express hostility. This proves that they are not united in feeling because when a couple is united in feeling it is impossible for one to express hostility to the other. Hostility separates and destroys internal unity, even if later, it is followed by making up and expressing love. This alternating flip-flop state of love and hostility marks the typical behavior in the dominance and equity models (zones 1 through 6).


 

6.  Part B

 

The equity model is associated with the "modern" outlook that young people in many traditional cultures adopt as a new philosophy of relationship between men and women, thereby taking a step away from the traditional dominance model of their elders. In the equity model of marriage, all responsibilities and duties of husband and wife are shared through negotiation and agreement between each other. This leads to a cognitive level of conjunction between a man and a woman (zone 5), since they have to negotiate by arguments why one partner should do X and Y and the other partner should do A and B. Cognitive unity is gradually achieved through such a process, as long as both partners are sincere rather than just manipulative.

 

While the focus in the dominance level is sensorimotor conjunction (zone 1), the focus in the equity model is cognitive conjunction (zone 5). The equity model is essentially a political power sharing agreement. It tends to create similar ideas and beliefs in the two partners, a similar reasoning process. This cognitive conjunction makes the sensorimotor interaction better than before. They get along better, agree more, can talk it out and influence each other's thinking and decisions. Because of this their sensorimotor interactions (zone 4) are more compatible--they enlarge and diversify their physical activities and enjoyment of each other. But they still argue. The wife still gets abused from time to time when the husband gives himself permission to explode or take a stance that hurts her. The husband still resists and resents the wife's attempt to influence him, to change his traits and habits that she finds are in the way of a still closer relationship.

 

There is one more phase the woman wants and needs--their affective conjunction. This would create unity, for which a woman craves for instinctively, biologically, consciously, knowingly. Nothing less than that can completely fulfill her. The wife has a mental picture of the conjoint self where the focus is on affective and inmost conjunction. She can be free of the fear that any time her husband can jump on her and hurt her feelings. She wants her husband to give in to her inner wisdom in all three domains of the self. She wants her husband to love her affections and wisdom more than he loves his own. In this way she will be first in his mind rather than himself.

 

The wife desires to be first in her husband's mind not because she is selfish and thinking of her comfort or ego. She is thinking of the conjoint self and she wants that true and perfect unity that lasts to eternity. She realizes in her inner wisdom that acquiring a conjoint self is more important for her husband than his way of looking at things. His way of looking at things cannot create an eternal relationship.

 

The third and inmost phase of conjunction achieves affective unity (zone 9) and greatly improves the cognitive and sensorimotor interactions at the same time (zones 7 and 8). Not only are the two partners conjoined in their sensorimotor and cognitive self, but now they at last become conjoined in their affective self--their feelings and motivations. This level of conjunction is not possible without both partners abandoning the prior two models. The focus at this third level must be the affective self, and the other two are then consequences of this inmost conjunction.

 

By abandoning the traditional dominance model (zones 1, 2, 3), the husband no longer sees himself as entitled to being treated in a certain way by the woman. Afterwards, by abandoning the equity model (zones 4, 5, 6), the husband no longer sees equal power and responsibility as a good focus for their relationship. The equity focus leads to disagreements, and even the agreements may not be fully suitable to the woman. Instead the man now adopts a new philosophy or model for their relationship. Note in the chart that zones 1, 5, 9 are bolded. This is the path that represents the progressive growth of the conjoint self. First the engaged or married couple is focusing on their sensorimotor conjunction (zone 1) in the dominance model. Then they focus on cognitive conjunction (zone 5) in the equity model. Finally, they focus on affective conjunction (zone 9) in the unity model.

 

In the unity model, the husband understands rationally that gender unity is based on differentiation of traits that are reciprocal. This is not something to be negotiated about but recognized and lived. The husband begins to see that his affections or loves--what he likes and dislikes, are often incompatible with his wife's affections--what she likes and dislikes. For example, he would like to keep his male friends even after his wife shows her opposition because she doesn't like the influence they have on him, which is to cause a separation between her and her husband. He resists by denying that they are having a bad influence, or by insisting that marriage doesn't mean that everything that came prior must stop, or by accusing her of being over controlling or jealous. By means of these tactics of resistance, the man is able to keep separate from her and remain disjoined at the affective level. Their relationship remains at the equity or traditional dominance level and cannot grow inward.

 

The husband can think rationally about it and figure it out. This is called spiritual enlightenment because he can have this realization only if he thinks of his wife as an eternal partner, not just "until death do us part." He can then decide to give up his affective independence without feeling that he is losing something. He can have the vision or realization that heaven in eternity requires affective conjunction between them. Now the husband has a new rule for himself: he will keep himself from ever disagreeing with her about any of her demands, requests, pleadings, urgings, or expectations. These are all the ways the wife reveals her affections to her husband. He can see rationally that by subordinating his own affections to hers, they can form a unity, which will then greatly enhance their cognitive and sensorimotor conjunction attained previously. Now they will truly be of "one mind" and "one spirit." The husband experiences enormous resistance to this course of action, and it takes years of effort for a man to stop relapsing into the equity or dominance mode of interacting with his wife.

 

The unity model of marriage actually refers to all three models together. No couples start directly at the third level called unity (zones 7, 8, 9). Unity or inner threefold conjunction, is a developmental outcome of prior phases of relationship. Further, a couple often interacts at different levels at different times and in different areas of their relationship. Theoretically it is possible for a couple to be active in all nine zones at different times. But this kind of instability and inconsistency does not allow true inner conjunction or unity. There may be times when the couple reaches a unity level, but it doesn't last. Only when the lower levels of interaction (dominance, equity) are mostly abandoned and no longer occur, can true unity be achieved as a lifestyle and permanent state of eternal happiness and peace. A useful application of the ennead model is to use it as a map for identifying and locating the current levels of interaction between a husband and wife.


 

Threefold Degrees of Conjunction -- Tables 1b and 1c

 

Section 7

 

This is Table 1b (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

level 3
UNITY
Rational
Mentality

7
rational
sensorimotor
acts

8
rational
cognitive
processes

9
rational
affective
states

level 2
EQUITY
Sensuous
Mentality

4
sensuous
sensorimotor
acts

5
sensuous
cognitive
processes 

6
sensuous
affective
states

level 1
DOMINANCE
Corporeal
Mentality

1
corporeal
sensorimotor
acts

2
corporeal
cognitive
processes 

3
corporeal
affective
states

 

Table 1b above identifies the psychological characteristics or "mentality" that creates a preference for one of the three models. The dominance model is called level 1 because it tends to be first in the couple's development. "Corporeal" mentality refers to the style of personality that focuses almost exclusively on physical goals and satisfactions. It is a materialistic outlook, but even more so than the "sensuous" mentality of level 2. The corporeal mentality reflects the level of operation of the threefold self -- our feeling states, our thinking style, and our overt acts and sensations (zones 3, 2, 1). If you inspect the Table you will see how each zone of the ennead is defined by the marginal entries. The by three marginal entries (columns by rows) equals 9 cells or "zones" of interaction between the threefold self and the three levels of human mentality.

 

Let's apply Table 1b to an actual behavioral area in marriage: sexual behavior. In Table 1c below, let's enter a characterization of each of the nine zones of sexual interaction.

 

This is Table 1c  (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

level 3
UNITY
Rational
Mentality

7
RATIONAL
SENSORIMOTOR
ACTS
sensations and pleasures felt as consequences of their mental unity

8
RATIONAL
COGNITIVE
PROCESSES
involved with thoughts about the spiritual or eternal details of their conjunction

9
RATIONAL
AFFECTIVE
STATES
constantly motivated and striving to achieve mental closeness

level 2
EQUITY
Sensuous
Mentality

4
SENSUOUS
SENSORIMOTOR
ACTS
sensations and pleasures felt as consequences of their performance or achievement 

5
SENSUOUS
COGNITIVE
PROCESSES 
involved with thoughts about evaluation (How am I doing? Is it the best ever? Is this fair?  Different? Etc.

6
SENSUOUS

AFFECTIVE
STATES
constantly motivated and striving to compete with or gain more from the partner

level 1
DOMINANCE
Corporeal
Mentality

1
CORPOREAL
SENSORIMOTOR
ACTS  

sensations and pleasures felt as consequences of maintaining control over the partner 

2
CORPOREAL
COGNITIVE
PROCESSES 

involved with thoughts about how to keep pressuring the partner to cooperate or be non-resistant

3
CORPOREAL
AFFECTIVE
STATES
constantly motivated and striving to overcome and compel the partner to be submissive 

 

In order to understand the chart better replace the characterizations with your own examples of sexual behavior in a couple you know (real or TV). Then do two more on the topic of "money" and "lifestyle."

 


 

Threefold Degrees of Conjunction -- Table 1d

Section 8

 

This is Table 1d  (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

level 3
UNITY
Rational Mentality
-------

Relationship at the PARTICULAR
 LEVEL

zone 7
rational
sensorimotor
acts

-------
e.g., partners' movements are coordinated to each other

zone 8
rational
cognitive
processes

-------
e.g., partners discover and always strive to agree with each other's opinions and justifications 

zone 9
rational
affective
states

-------
e.g., the husband always strives to align his feelings or desires to match his wife's feelings

level 2
EQUITY
Sensuous Mentality

-------

Relationship at the PERSONAL
 LEVEL

zone 4
sensuous
sensorimotor
acts

-------
e.g., partners' movements are competitive with each other

zone 5
sensuous
cognitive
processes 

-------

e.g., partners know but often disagree with each other's opinions and justifications

zone 6
sensuous
affective
states

-------

e.g., partners take turns giving in even if they don't agree

 

level 1
DOMINANCE
Corporeal Mentality

-------

Relationship at the GENERAL
 LEVEL

zone 1
corporeal
sensorimotor
acts

-------

e.g., the wife's movements are directed by the husband using force, threat, or intimidation

zone 2
corporeal
cognitive
processes 

-------
e.g., the wife knows the husband's prerogatives and strives to submit to them under fear of retaliation

zone 3
corporeal
affective
states

-------

e.g., the partners' interactions are governed by the expectations of tradition and family

 

Table 1d above helps you to distinguish more clearly the kind of relationship that married partners are in when they model their behavior in accordance with the the three levels of mentality.

 

The corporeal mentality of the dominance model (level 1) involves the partners at a general level, thus more distant to each other than the equity or unity models. Husband and wife relate to each other at a general level. It has physical and mental intimacy, but only of the external or outward self -- how one appears to others. Inside, what one actually thinks and feels, may be the opposite. When tradition and family govern or dictate the interaction possibilities between husband and wife, their relationship remains at the general level.

 

But with the equity model (level 2) the married partners can interact at the personal level, independently of tradition and family. They get closer to each other mentally, not just physically. They get to know each other's opinions and preferences and they take turns agreeing with one another as a way of maintaining peace and avoiding warfare. Their relationship is at the personal level and can get more and more personal, but it cannot get to be all encompassing for every particular aspect of their personality and social make up. They prefer to remain at a certain distance in their intimacy in areas where they both agree to some "legitimate" independence -- e.g., how they think about certain things like politics or religion, what is the best and what the next best of something is, what friends and hobbies they are allowed to have separately from each other, etc.

 

All these negotiated agreements and mutual allowances of independence in the equity model, are banished when the husband moves up to the unity model of interaction. The rational mentality of this model prompts the partners to be intolerant of any differences between them. They strive to eliminate any love, affection, desire, or goal that is antagonistic or independent of the other partner's loves and goals. In this way they have a mutual love that expresses itself as the constant striving or motivation by each to make the other one happy through what one can do for them.

 

 In the dominance model of interaction the wife is persuaded to make the husband happy by doing things for him the way he wants and directs. This is a general level of relationship based on a corporeal or physicalistic mentality (level 1). In the equity model the two partners take turns doing for the other what is wanted or requested. This is a personal level of relationship based on sensuous appearances that each partner gives to the other about oneself. In the unity model of rational mentality the husband is enlightened spiritually to realize that perfect marriage unity depends on exchanging his independent loves and goals for joint loves and goals. He thus acquires a conjoint self that is dependent, compatible, and integrated with his wife. In this way out of two separate individuals, they become one conjoint individual. This is the highest state of life humans can reach in which they are stable, happy, wise, useful,  and productive beyond anything possible otherwise.

 

Quoting from Swedenborg's Writings:

AC 10168. Love truly conjugial is the union of two minds, which is a spiritual union; and all spiritual union descends from heaven. From this it is that love truly conjugial is from heaven, and that its first being is from the marriage of good and truth there. The marriage of good and truth in heaven is from the Lord; wherefore in the Word the Lord is called the "Bridegroom" and "Husband," while heaven and the church are called the "bride" and "wife;" and therefore heaven is compared to a marriage. (AC 10168)

AC 10169. From all this it is evident that love truly conjugial is the union of two persons in respect to their interiors, which belong to the thought and the will, thus to truth and good; for truth belongs to the thought, and good to the will. For one who is in love truly conjugial loves what the other thinks and what the other wills; thus he also loves to think as the other does, and he loves to will as the other does; consequently to be united to the other, and to become as one man.  (...) (AC 10169)

AC 10170. The delight of love truly conjugial is an internal delight, because it belongs to the minds, and is also an external delight from this, which belongs to the bodies. But the delight of love not truly conjugial is only an external delight without an internal one, and such a delight belongs to the bodies and not to the minds. But this delight is earthly, being almost like that of animals, and therefore in time perishes; whereas the first-mentioned delight is heavenly, as that of men should be, and therefore is permanent. (AC 10170)

AC 10173. That which is done from love truly conjugial is done from freedom on both sides, because all freedom is from love, and both have freedom when one loves that which the other thinks and that which the other wills. From this it is that the wish to command in marriages destroys genuine love, for it takes away its freedom, thus also its delight. The delight of commanding, which follows in its place, brings forth disagreements, and sets the minds at enmity, and causes evils to take root according to the nature of the domination on the one side, and the nature of the servitude on the other. (AC 10173)

 


9.  Male Dominance Model of Marriage

Section 9

9.  Part A

One of the books on the national best seller list today as I write this (April 2004), is The Proper Care & Feeding of Husbands by Dr. Laura Schlessinger, the popular call in talk show host whose voice of morality in relationships has been influential. The book jacket says that she is the author of Six New York Times Bestsellers. I use her book in my course on Gender Relationships in Marriage as a rich source for studying the attributes of the dominance model in marriage.

Chapter 6 is entitled "What's Sex?" and opens with three letters by husbands who have written to "Dr. Laura."

I think women use their bodies as tools for controlling men. Once married, they go on to other tools. It seems to me we have this backwards. Girls ought to be more modest, and wives ought to be less so--around their husbands. Instead single women show thighs and breasts, and wives dress like Eskimos. I saw a lot more skin in my dating life that I do as a married man--and I was a virgin when I married!"
Bob

My wonderful wife has put it best: "Sex is to a husband what conversation is to a wife. When a wife deprives her husband of sex for days, even weeks on end, it is tantamount to his refusing to talk to her for days, even weeks." Think of it that way, wives, and realize what a deleterious impact enforced sexual abstinence has on a good man who is determined to remain faithful."
Herb

We need more sex. Once a day is fine.
Steve

Dr. Laura quotes these three letters at the head of the chapter to make the same point she makes in every chapter, as echoed in the title of the book: which appears in the header line on every page: The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands. Let's analyze the assumptions contained in the statements these three men are making about their wives and which Dr. Laura has chosen to make her point about how wives should listen to their husbands about what they need to be properly taken care of, and in this chapter, it is about sex--what kind of sexual behavior wives owe their husbands if the marriage is going to succeed and not break up.

Assumptions of the male dominance model contained in the three letters:

(1) women use their bodies as tools for controlling men

(2) married women have less interest in sex than unmarried

(3) wives ought not to be sexually modest with their husbands

(4) unmarried women are "girls" who dress to show their thighs and breasts

(5) wives dress like Eskimos at home, hiding their thighs and breasts

(6) wives should think that when they say no to sex they are hurting a good man who wants to be faithful

(7) when wives say no to sex they are depriving their husbands and are enforcing abstinence

(8) it's mean for a wife to say no to sex--it is like a husband refusing to have a conversation with her

(9) men need more sex and wives should provide it

There are many more assumptions in the male dominance model, but these are the nine that permeate the logic of the three notes Dr. Laura is quoting. The general theme expressed here is that a the man has the right to expect his wife to have sex with him when he wants it. Dr. Laura chides married women for not taking care of their appearance to please their husbands. A few days ago I listened to one of Dr. Laura's radio broadcasts. A woman called in and shared her distress over her husband's complaints and criticisms of her because she didn't want to comply with his excessive sexual demands. He insists that she has sex with him every day, and sometimes three times a day. Furthermore, he criticizes her for not consenting each time to have her legs up in the air during intercourse. She said it was an uncomfortable position for her, but since she has had her second child, he insists that that's the only way he can enjoy himself. What should she do?


9.  Part B

Dr. Laura told her she needs to show more enthusiasm about their sex and take an active role. She should not have sex with him in a passive subdued mode because he gets bored with that and since he brings home the paycheck, goes out into the world to earn a living to support her and the children, he is a good husband and she should treat him well. Dr. Laura suggested that she make a reservation at a motel and surprise him by spending a night of sex with him. Dr. Laura often reports that women write to her to say how grateful they are when their husband's attitude has changed for the better, after they started showing them appreciation and pleasing them

The unity model of marriage focuses on the mental union between husband and wife as the primary interaction, while the physical interaction is secondary. In other words, sex is the secondary outcome of the primary mental union. The male dominance model focuses on physical sex as the primary thing and mental union as secondary. The masculine model is to have sex first, and second to get to know one another. A husband sometimes says mean things to his wife, deprecating things about her appearance, calling her names, yelling, getting angry, walking away, giving the silent treatment, refusing to do something he promised, etc. Some minutes, hours, or days later, the husband feels better and wants to make up by having sex with her. If she refuses, he is angered and expresses resentment, accusing her of selfishness or coldness. From the perspective of the unity model, this type of behavior by the husband is self-centered, cruel, and destructive of the internal bonds of the marriage.

From the male dominance model one might argue, like Dr. Laura, that a husband who is good, deserves to be treated in the way he wants to because this is his need and the wife who loves her husband, should take care of his need, whether sexual or otherwise. I call this the blackmail argument because it puts the woman into a double bind, the result of which is to destroy the internal bonds of the married partners.

I witnessed a similar attitude practiced by Dr. Phil, a popular TV host of counseling sessions with married couples. A common issue he handles is the husband's complaint that his wife's sex drive is lower than his, and sometimes nonexistent. Dr. Phil confronts the wife -- Why aren't you giving him the sex he wants? or, What have you got against sex? or, You need to realize that sex is a necessary component of a good relationship, and other such statements, by which he faults the wife for not letting her husband molest her sexually. From a woman's inner feeling, being compelled to have sex with her husband when she is aversive to it, is like prostituting herself or at least, to be a slut. She doesn't want her choice being taken away from her as to how she should feel towards her husband. She knows what she is feeling and it hurts her for others to try to convince her that she is wrong in her feelings.

What Dr. Phil and Dr. Laura and the other male dominant therapists need to do is to start with the husband, not the wife. Cherchez le husband. In other words, start objectively by going directly to the source of the wife's aversion towards having sex with him. This is objectively the husband's responsibility. If sex in marriage is to be intimate and loving, rather than exploitative and slutty, it is the husband who needs to find ways to make the wife feel like being intimate with him. This is the husband's responsibility entirely, one hundred percent. The equity model would say that this is a fifty-fifty responsibility. One of the first things Dr. Phil says is "You need to negotiate," by which he means in this case, that the wife should give up her busy schedule and make room for being intimate with her husband. Then, Dr. Phil usually turns to the husband, as an afterthought it seems to me, to tell him that he must help too. He turns to her and says, "You must learn to say No to activities. Maybe you can work less hours. Maybe you don't need to do as much as you are doing. But you must find time for sex."

This is what I call sanctioning sexual blackmail. I call it this because I have learned that this is the woman's perspective on the issue. She feels herself compelled to have sex with her husband while she is aversive to it. She hates the idea of having him do his thing in her while she is dead tired, tense, sleepy, and resentful like hell at him. There is the point that Dr. Phil and Dr. Laura do not ever focus on, as it it were a nonexistent issue for them. And perhaps it is, from the mentality of the male dominance model (see the Tables in the Field Observations below.).

Back to the main point that needs be focused on in marriage therapy or counseling: It is the husband who needs help in understanding his contribution to his wife's aversion at having sex with him.

The husband is normally totally unaware that he has created this sexual aversion in his wife. Note that few wives ever allow themselves to express their feelings and say to their husbands, "You disgust me. I hate the way you touch me. I hate how you know nothing about me, nor are you interested." If a wife were to express this feeling to her husband, he would likely turn impotent with her for all times. A woman knows from inner perception what not to tell him about her feelings  though they are real to her.

If I were giving the advice, I would try to bring out these steps:

(1) Teach the husband that things can be fixed if he accepts the idea that he is the cause of his wife's aversion to having sex with him. 

This is the case even if she says that it is because she is tired, or has too much work to get through, or there is no time or privacy, or some other justification. The  justification given by the wife may also be true, but the unspoken part is that she hates being sexually intimate with him and doesn't want to do it for sexual blackmail, which would make her feel like a slut slave and a worthless person unfit to be a mother or full fledged citizen. By saying No to him, she is protecting her dignity, freedom, and sanity. This is why it is so hard on women to have to be told by a marriage therapist that they should agree to more sex or give up on the marriage lasting. This idea is terribly threatening and disturbing, hence all the more cruel. The woman has to face all this cruelty and abuse from the male dominance model and oppose all of tradition and all of society, that are behind her husband's side and are all telling her, You must give him more sex, you must.

Once the husband accepts and understands this sexual blackmail feature of his demands, he can begin solving his situation.

(2) Teach the husband on how to obtain facts from his wife regarding all the ways he turns her off and makes her feel ant-sexual towards him.

One of the sharpest and most cruel of stabs a husband delivers to his wife is when he shows her by his behavior that he discounts her observations in comparison to his own. This is one of the most destructive habits to marriage in the male dominance model. The woman's opinion or explanation is driven away, banished from the subjective world of male intelligence. A man generally wants to discount a woman's opinion or perspective whenever it doesn't agree with the male intelligence or perspective. This attack is so pernicious to the woman's well being that she exhausts herself emotionally trying to make him listen. Inside of himself, the man laughs at her desperate attempts, confident in himself, knowing that she can't win, that he'll never give in on this point. Arrogantly he thinks that she should just give in and lay her own stubborn ideas to the side for the sake of his, and for the sake of their peace in marriage.


10. Sexual Blackmail

Section 10

Here too, we can recognize the male dominance blackmail approach. He is saying to her, "Look woman, I've got you over the barrel. You need me, so you better just go along and give yourself a chance to be happy, or comfortable, or rich, or whatever." Again, this is blackmail for to go along with it, the woman has to give up her human rights -- her dignity, her freedom, and her sanity.

So the husband must be taught how to listen to his wife. For more on this, see the Readings under the "Doctrine of the Wife."

From the perspective of external bonds between the married partners, this blackmail double bind situation for the wife cannot be seen or understood. For instance, in the book and on her daily radio program, Dr. Laura often repeats to women callers that they should appreciate it and feel lucky when they have a good man for a husband. What is a good man? Dr. Laura specified that it is a man who is responsible enough to have a decent job, to support his family, and to want to spend time with his wife--going to Church, having sex, going for trips, talking to his wife, even helping out, although this last behavior is not a requirement for being a good husband. So when a husband comes home he expects and deserves his wife to cater to him, to his needs, to express appreciation for his courage in going out there into the world to earn a living for his family instead of running off with another woman.

When I read this in her book or hear it on her radio program, my mind screams in protest: What about the wife? Why doesn't  Dr. Laura mention the wife's hard work staying home taking care of everything--house, children, bills, pets, errands, after school lessons for the children, remembering birthdays for everyone, taking care of emergencies, going through pregnancy, taking all the nastiness and grossness her husband dishes out daily, etc. Why is Dr. Laura ignoring this?

I know if she read this she would protest that of course she does acknowledge the work of women--after all she has been a mother and a wife for many years, and she has been talking to women for many years.

But this doesn't take care of the problem I'm raising. In order to see the problem Dr. Laura will have to look at the male dominance model from the perspective of the equity model, something she may be familiar with, but doesn't think much of, not enough to make it part of her advice or talk. And yet she would have to give it the positive bias, which means to acknowledge the idea that the equity model may actually be superior to the male dominance model. With this acknowledgement, the argument can be examined and evaluated.

The equity model requires that every concept applied to the husband must simultaneously be applied to the wife--not later or in the next part of the discussion or in some past discussion. For instance, if Dr. Laura advises the wife that she be appreciative, she must at the same time advise the husband to be appreciative. This she does not do, ever. In her mind and in her understanding these two things are separate.. And this is the way one thinks from the male dominance perspective.

Dr. Laura is against being unfair to women in marriage, but she draws the line of fairness on the male side, not in the middle. Why do so many men and women think this way about marriage? Because it is traditional and part of one's culture and upbringing. Most people start the marriage relationship with a male dominance perspective.

Now what happens if we switch over to the equity model perspective? What would Dr. Laura have to say to give advice from the perspective of the equity model? If she is talking to a man who is complaining that his wife doesn't greet him at the door with a warm smile and all pretty and nice smelling, Dr. Laura usually first finds out if he is a good husband. By this she means whether he brings home the family paycheck and has no extra-marital affairs. Then she agrees with him that his wife needs to learn how to show her appreciation for his being a good husband, something he deserves to receive from her if she respects him. That's it. She doesn't ask the man if and how he shows his appreciation of her being a good wife. That's because Dr. Laura doesn't define a good wife in the same way as she defines a good husband. A woman does not receive the epithet of "good wife" for all she does by taking care of the kids, the house, the bank, the car, and the driving to the ballet and soccer classes. This is something the wife  should be doing anyway -- according to the traditional dominance mentality as expressed by Dr. Laura. In order to be called a "good wife" she also needs to show her appreciation for her husband being good--doll herself up before he gets home, keep the children quiet, have dinner ready, and later, give him sex in the way he wants it.

Why the double standards? This appears to be a necessary part of the male dominance model. I have observed this with other "media therapists" that I get to see on TV. Almost all of them are men and they operate from a perspective of male dominance. One of the most popular shows in this genre is "Dr. Phil" McGraw, and I've watched him many times deal with problems couples bring up. He talks to him, then to her. He lets him off easy, hardly ever challenging any of his statements, and smiling and being friendly with him. Then he focuses in on the wife. Now he is not smiling, but acting confrontational and intimidating. He grills her and constantly argues to get her to accept the blame for the marriage problems. Dr. Phil acts like he wants the wife to feel that she is the one who is at fault, she is the one who has to change and give up this or that expectation she has of her husband.

Another popular author and national seminar leader on marriage counseling is Dr. John Gray, known for his best seller book Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus (Harper Collins, 1992) and several other such books widely used in his "relationship seminars." I saw him several years ago appearing on the highly popular "Oprah" Winfrey television show. He was telling the audience that a wives should give their husbands sex every day, or as often the men want it. Oprah looked nonplussed: "You mean they should have sex even if they don't want to?" John Gray nodding vigorously said, "Yes. You know, men get all jammed inside if they don't have it." and he was pointing to his abdomen with rapid circular movements of his hand, no doubt to indicate the "jamming up" part. Although Oprah normally has popular therapists on her show for several shows, she never had John Gray again after that episode.

It's astonishing to me that John Gray, Dr. Phil, and Dr. Laura can apparently have so many women among their supporters and regular audience. I explain this by the overwhelming pressure these women must feel from their husbands, boy friends, media experts, and social norms, all of which operate to support the male dominance model of interaction between men and women. Mothers raise their daughters to cater to their father and brothers, and when they begin to date there is enormous pressure on them to "please" the boy they are going with, which means to engage in sexual behavior with him. During this interaction, the woman will have to constantly fight off the advancing pressure. The man, ardent on satisfying himself, steps over the line the woman has set down. the pressure becomes physical intimidation, threat, force, date rape, or, as we are discussing here, sexual blackmail. According to this cruel social rule, the wife must give her husband sex at a rate that can be mutually negotiated, but she has no legitimate right to rely on her own feelings whether to have sex or when.

 The male dominance model has from time immemorial promoted the sexual slavery of women. For example, in the Old Testament days and culture men could have several wives, and they were allowed to overtly discriminate among them and their children. Men were allowed to divorce their wives merely by openly declaring their wish. They could then banish them from the household and all other help or protection. The men could do this, and still receive the respect of the community. This mentality is still governing the lives of the majority of women on this planet.

To be objective and accurate we must make a distinction between two types of abuse of women stemming from the male dominance model: physical and mental. Where there is physical abuse, there is also mental abuse. But there may be mental abuse without physical abuse. This is by far the most common form of abuse among men in our society. Men with a domestic violence history are not respected in our society. they are disapproved of and sometimes sent to jail. On the other hand, the majority of well respected and up standing citizens of most communities in this country will tolerate and practice mental abuse against women.


11.  Mental Abuse

Section 11

Mental abuse of wives by husbands includes these very common forms of cruel and denigrating behaviors:

  1. verbally expressing denigration and name calling

  2. talking with a threatening voice or implication

  3. maintaining silence and refusing to talk

  4. walking out in anger

  5. forcing physical intimacy without adequately preparing her for receptivity

  6. making her feel neglected and not appreciated

  7. showing disapproval or making her feel guilty about herself

  8. deliberately trying to confuse her so he can get his way with her

  9. breaking promises

  10. interrupting to prevent her from talking

  11. using her sexually than discarding her

  12. keeping her from expressing her true self

  13. keeping her from reaching her cherished goals

  14. showing disinterest in her

  15. exploiting her by making her work hard to do things for him

  16. damaging her reputation by gossiping about her

  17. and etc. (how many more can you add?)

Note especially item (5): forcing physical intimacy without adequately preparing her for receptivity. This is the type of mental abuse we've been discussing above regarding the advice offered by Dr. Laura, Dr. Phil, and John Gray, among others. Why is the wife not reciprocating her husband's sexual advances? The male dominance model puts the blame on the wife. The equity model puts the blame on both the husband and the wife. The unity model puts the blame on the husband.

From the perspective of the unity model it is the husband who stands in the way of mental intimacy with the wife. The wife desires mental intimacy with her husband but the husband finds that kind of intimacy aversive. He desires the sexual relief, which is self-centered, not couple centered, or wife-centered.

The unity model has a wife-centric focus. It assumes that the wife wants mental conjunction and intimacy, while the husband is fighting it, trying to retain his mental independence. For women, sexual intimacy is a spontaneous and delightful consequence of mental intimacy with the man she loves and to whom she wants to conjoin herself. So if the wife refuses sexual intimacy with her husband, it's because he doesn't want to be mentally intimate with her. This is the cause of her apparent coldness to his hot advances. He is self-centered, or genital-centered. He wants sexual relief. Like Dr. John Gray said, "a man gets all jammed up in there if he doesn't get enough sex from his wife." That's what the man is looking for, to get unjammed. An approach to counseling that is guided by the male dominance model, cooperates with the husband's perspective and advocates a methodology that I have called sexual blackmail.

The male dominance model therapists advocate that the wife should have sex with her husband even when he is unwilling to be mentally intimate with her.

The unity model sees this as sexual blackmail because it is not healthy for a woman to have sex with a man who is unwilling to be mentally intimate with her.

By unhealthy, I mean that her self-respect and human dignity is injured, in the same way that slaves were hurt psychologically by being denied their human rights. Also, like women who are forced into prostitution by a boyfriend to whom they must hand over the money, and who beats them if they refuse him.

Making a woman have sex with her husband even though she doesn't want, is cruel to the wife and harmful to the marriage relationship. The male dominance model therapists and husbands want to separate the issue of "mental intimacy" and "sexual intimacy." This is a purely masculine perspective. The feminine perspective is that first comes mental intimacy, then physical intimacy. Sex should be the outcome or consequence of mental intimacy. In prostitution or casual sex, there is no requirement for mental intimacy to be present, and in fact, all parties prefer that mental intimacy be left out of the sexual transactions. When men get married they bring into the marriage this male dominant perspective. Therapists like John Gray, among many others, support the husband's perspective, despite the fact that it is harmful to the wife and to the marriage. Ultimately it is harmful to the husband since this perspective inhibits real intimacy and the rich life of conjunction. He doesn't get to find out how warm and passionate and sweet his wife actually is when he develops mental intimacy with her.


12.  Developing Mental Intimacy With One's Wife

Section 12

There are two steps.

First, he must stop adding to her mental distress.
Second, he must start easing her mental distress.

These are simple strategies, easy to understand and carry out by husbands. They are not done because husbands resist and refuse, soon after they find out all that is included in these two rules. A husband who follows these two rules, loves his wife. But a husband who refuses to practice these rules daily, does not love his wife.

Here is a list of common behaviors by a husband which keeps him from becoming mentally intimate with his wife.

  1. blames his wife for something

  2. expresses anger at his wife for something

  3. insults his wife

  4. says things unflattering about her

  5. embarrasses her in front of others

  6. refuses to talk about something she wants

  7. says No to her despite her pleadings

  8. ignores her when she walks into the room

  9. fails to stop her anxieties when he can so by calling

  10. forgets things that she wants him to remember

  11. doesn't try to find out how she wants to be handled physically

  12. lets her feel that he doesn't feel as responsible for housework and other marriage tasks, as he expects her to be

  13. doesn't try to get rid of habits he has that she doesn't like

  14. doesn't come to her rescue when he sees she is in distress (e.g., has too many things to do)

  15. tries to get her to do things for him even when she rather not do them

  16. gets insulted at her for saying something to him he doesn't like

  17. tells her she is a nag for repeatedly reminding him of his broken promises

  18. maintains relationships with men friends from which she feels excluded

  19. lies to her and hides things from her

  20. puts limits around certain issues where she is given no power of influence

  21. makes sarcastic remarks that hurt her self-image

  22. sees her being disturbed about something and does nothing about it

  23. makes her accept his choice in something when she would prefer something else (e.g., ordering food, renting a movie, selecting a TV channel, going somewhere, buying something, etc.)

If I were a marriage counselor I would tell husbands that they need to monitor their interactions with the wife and note how many of these behaviors they commit in a day. They cannot do this on their own so they need to enlist the cooperation of their wife. She will help him identify the exchanges that make her feel separate from him instead of intimate. Husbands who do this sincerely and persistently will discover how passionate and sweet their wife can be. Never again will they complain that they are all jammed up sexually and prepared to get it by blackmail, intimidation, or guilt.

This morning on my way back from campus I listened to Dr. Laura on her daily radio program. A woman called in and asked for advice on what to do about her husband who has accused her of not caring about him because she is teaching Sunday School while he attends Church with the family. Her child is in the Sunday School class and that's one of the reasons she didn't feel like dropping the activity. Dr. Laura immediately accused her of not being a good wife because she is choosing some task she wants to do over her husband. Dr. Laura admonished the woman that she should appreciate the fact that her husband is willing to go to Church instead of going off to his golf on his own. The woman said she did appreciate that but sometimes he comes along and sometimes he doesn't want to, so she doesn't like the idea of dropping her Sunday School teacher activity, with her daughter in the class. Dr. Laura insisted the wife is being selfish and foolish. Do you want to break up your marriage? The days he doesn't want to go to Church, that's fine, just stay home with him.

Looking at this from the perspective of the equity and unity models one can see clearly that it is the husband who is being selfish and foolish in this situation. He doesn't respect her religion  if he feels he can stay home any time he doesn't feel like going, and then expects her to stay home too. Furthermore, he doesn't respect his wife since he is willing to put an end to her Sunday School teaching when she is so involved in it, and when it is a good thing to do, as indeed it is. He is being selfish for disregarding his wife's request that she continue to teach Sunday School on account of their child being there. Dr. Laura could have advised that the husband should join her in teaching Sunday School. He can sit in and help her manage the kids. He doesn't need to know the subject matter she is teaching. This would show his respect for his wife and family. But Dr. Laura would not be able to support such a solution as long as she is speaking exclusively from the male dominance model.

This is a common way in which husbands are unwilling to be mentally intimate with their wives. In this case, the husband was unwilling to show respect for her Sunday School involvement. This is a mental abuse. Dr. Laura could not see that it is mental abuse. Instead, she saw it as a reasonable demand on the part of the husband, and she put the blame on the wife for not going along with his demand. Now suppose the husband tries to have sex with his wife that week. He is demanding that she be physically intimate with him even though he is refusing to be mentally intimate with her. She is not only not turned on by his touchings, but she is turned off, and makes her feel dirty to have to give in to him for fear of his retaliations. If they should call Dr. Laura, or go consult Dr. Phil on his show, the wife would be told that she is being selfish or stupid for not having sex with such a good husband who brings home the paycheck and is interested in her instead of going to another woman. This is the mentality and level of moral reasoning of the male dominance model.

Recall this very important fact: We all start out with the male dominance model!

This is what we inherit culturally, spiritually, and socially, both men and women. Then, as women have more life experience and understanding, they quickly figure it out and try to do the best with the man they end up with. The men are resistant. They want to hold on to the male dominance model of interaction with women. They love it. And so they accuse the women of nagging them, of not accepting them for who they are, and they pressure the women to back off into silence and obedience. In other words, the men refuse to be mentally intimate even though they demand that the women be physically intimate with them. This puts the women into a hurtful double bind. It is a cruel thing to do to them, but the men do not care about this type of cruelty. They just want the women to keep quiet about it because it is too inconvenient for them to deal with.

But fortunately, many men come to discover that they like mental intimacy with women. They then have to voluntarily lay aside the culturally inherited tendency to hate and denigrate women. This is a giant battle within themselves, but eventually they can move on to the equity model. Their wives or girlfriends now experience some relationship relief. At last she has some chance now since he is allowing them to negotiate over many things. She now has some victories that make her life more comfortable, and draws them closer in mental intimacy. This feels to her like a big relief. but there continue to be problems because the man keeps falling back on blackmail methods of negotiating, which is a male dominance pattern within the equity model.

Eventually the wife will remain unfulfilled unless the husband is willing to begin acting from the unity model. This is the interactional position the wife wants with her husband and lover. She needs for him to follow the Rule of the Doctrine of the Wife (see Section xx), which is that, he always has to align his thoughts and feelings to agree with hers. Once he is steadily committed to this unity model of behavior, the wife begins to feel that she is winning, that her desire for conjunction is actually happening. Now at last she has a husband who wants to be mentally intimate with her. The sexual happiness of the couple then reaches a new high unknown to them before.

They are now soul-mates, on their way to conjugial love in eternal union in the immortality of their heaven.


13.  The Spiritual Dimension to the Unity Model

Section 13

Psychology exists in two versions. One is called the negative bias, while the other is called the positive bias. The negative bias leads to materialism and atheistic psychology. The positive bias leads to theistic psychology (see Lecture Notes for G21, Psych 459:  www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic). The unity model is within theistic psychology and is based on the Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772). Since theistic psychology is a dualist perspective, it addresses the connection between this life and the afterlife. In fact it elevates the importance of knowing this connection to a matter more important than life or death. In the positive bias, we remain scientific and empirically oriented, but we rely on facts gathered by Swedenborg in his eyewitness exploration of the "the spiritual world" of the afterlife. To me, one of the most amazing and happy of the discoveries Swedenborg made is that we live life in heaven in a conjugial state. He interviewed many "celestial" couples who had lived on earth thousands of years ago. And they were forever together with their childhood sweethearts, living in the fullness of their youth, in company of other conjugial couples, each enjoying their private houses which are magnificent, according to Swedenborg precise descriptions of them.  This is conjugial unity in heaven to eternity. Endless happiness and joy increasing daily.

Swedenborg himself was attracted to this type of life and he wondered why everybody else isn't here in the state of heaven in their mind? Given his special Divinely appointed mission, Swedenborg was given the ability to visit the heavens and the hells that every human being contains in their mind. In other words, heaven and hell are not only have an individual mental reality but a communal one called the spiritual world of the afterlife. In other words, when we pass on we awaken in the spiritual world and continue our immortal life there. This life of immortality is either in the heaven of our mind or in the hells of our mind. What determines our ultimate destination in immortality depends on the traits we have accumulated while living in this life. If we are willing to let go of our hellish type traits, which are ego-biased and not based on rationality, we can experience what kind of heaven we can live in with the heavenly traits we acquired, which are based on being useful to society and considerate of others.

In other words, if you can be eternally happy with heavenly traits, you're in. But if you cannot be eternally happy just with the heavenly traits, you're out. And that means sinking into the depths and quagmires of our hell. Of course there are gradations of hell, depending on how much people are willing to give in to their savage desires and insane thoughts. Swedenborg observed that the people on the hells of their mind also appear to themselves as living together as couples in dingy, dark, and stenchy habitations. But these couples are not love with each other but in hatred. Swedenborg has disturbing descriptions of how much they hate each other and try to injure one another constantly. But the couples in heaven are kept together by mental unity, which is the maximum possible intimacy a married couple can experience.

 After reading and appreciating Swedenborg's reports, which amount to about 30 volumes in English translation, I looked for ways to apply this new knowledge to my life, and my marriage was the most obvious place for me to focus on. At that point I was already in my early forties and had been basking complacently in the equity model of marriage most of the time, and the male dominance model some of the time. I was content because I could opt out any time I wanted from the equity expectations simply by slipping back into the male dominance model. Then, after having my way, I could slip back into the equity model and take credit for being a reasonable, kind, civilized, and modern husband. This was a fraudulent equity model and my poor wife was suffering, having to live her life in the loneliness of her mental intimacy where I would not venture myself. Nor would I allow her into the mental intimacy of my mind, which she experienced as slippery and without real inner principles. She recognized that I was a slave to my inherited traits and that it was taking me down the path of hell. No heavenly life could exist amidst such feelings of male superiority that I had internalized.

When I came upon the Writings of Swedenborg I quickly realized that they were genuine and scientific. For the first time in human history husbands have available direct evidence of what it will be like for them if they retain the dominance-equity model vs. acquiring a new way of interacting with the wife called the unity model. I appreciated being given that opportunity. And when I saw what it's really going to be like, I backed off with horror from the dominance-equity model and formulated for myself a new approach which I called the unity model.

From the moment of committing myself to the unity model I had a new motive to help me change in all the areas of my relationship with my wife. I had a simple method, but totally effective. Whatever I felt like doing, saying, or thinking about any issue between us, I asked myself: Is this from heaven or from hell? The effectiveness of this method is that there are no in betweens. Equity arguments don't work. Dominance arguments work even less. I had no choice but to pick one or the other. No shades of in between, no conditional exceptions or justifications. It's a categorical and unconditional decision. And incalculable benefits or harm will result in the how I choose as a pattern. I can make mistakes along the way. But it is the cumulative pattern that indicates which direction I'm going in.

Swedenborg's reports allow me to fill in the precise consequences of choosing to go my heavenly way or my hellish way when I interact with my wife. I am motivated to live in a heavenly life in which I am eternally conjoined to my wife so that we no longer are two but one. Once I officially and publicly committed myself to this goal, my wife was able to help me in a decisive way. Before this, I neutralized her methods and resisted them. I remained who I was. I did not let her change me. I did not join her in her mental intimacy. I kept he rout of my mental intimacy. We were two people separated by two different minds. But then, we started becoming one-minded when I censored most of my spontaneous feelings, thoughts, and reactions, and labeled them as coming  from hell. There was a little space left as a result. In that little space I was able to insert a heavenly reaction, thought, or feeling. Suddenly my wife felt like I broke into her long suffering loneliness and neglect. I saved her, as I should have done, right from the beginning we met. Better late than never. And now I'm sharing the unity model with others.

The section on Field Observations below will give you analytic tools that are effective in monitoring your interactions and the interactions of couples you know. Until we learn how to monitor our interactions objectively, we only have an inaccurate and  biased view of ourselves. Try to memorize the tables or charts. Once they are in your conscious awareness, you will be able to use them to identify the interactions you are observing. The more you use the charts for your observations, the more your rational understanding will be enriched.


 

14.  Making Field Observations

 

Section 14

 

You can practice observing couples, yourself in a couple or other couples, to try to identify the level of their conjunction and interaction.

  • Observe their mode of talking. Does the man contradict what the woman says, or does he make her lose face by some other way like embarrassing her in front of others?

  • Is there conflict between them? Does he get mad and yell or pout? Does he walk away to cool off and stays away out of anger and inability to come together at the cognitive or affective level?

  • Does he insist on his own prerogatives as a man? Does he leave her to do his own thing with his friends, leaving her behind?

  • Does he insist or put pressure on her to do this or that she doesn't want to?

 

On occasions when you'll observe a couple in the unity phase, you will note that the interaction is very different. There is never any anger, hostility, disagreement, or bickering between them. They are united from the affective level outward to the cognitive and the sensorimotor. You're observing their sensorimotor interaction -- physical actions and talk -- but from these one can infer to some extent the quality of their cognitive and affective levels of interaction.

 

Note that the traditional dominance and equity models have to do with gender politics in power sharing. In contrast, the unity model is organic and has to do with reciprocity and mutuality. For instance, the human body is organically a whole, a unit functioning as one person. This organic unity is not achieved by the power differentiation between the parts, arguing among each other which organs or body parts are more powerful or important. Rather, what makes synergistic unity is the reciprocal and mutual dependence of differentiated parts, each part functioning at its unique best, and contributing to the whole.

 

What are relationship areas where the woman should lead in the unity model? These include all the areas in which a man is motivated by feelings he does not clearly recognize. His thinking and his acting are yet determined by these hidden motivations and feelings. The woman can perceive which of the man's feelings are competitive with her or even hostile to her. She can feel it through her reactions to his actions. In the traditional dominance and equity models the man reserves the right to say No! to the woman's perceptions and intuitions, even if she pleads with him to listen to her. But in the unity model he officially recognizes that she has perceptions of their relationship details that promote their unity, while he does not. Recognizing this, he voluntarily submits to her pleadings, urgings, demands, requests, suggestions, and expectations. And in this way he becomes the man she can be united with forever. But if he reserves the right to pick and choose when he will listen to her and when not, then they cannot achieve full unity of the threefold self.

 

In the marriage relationship the husband at first feels independent of his wife in terms of his cognitive and affective self. He loves the woman, spends time with her, and they do activities together, like going out, eating, running a house, etc. This joint activity unites them in the external sensorimotor self. But he maintains separate thoughts and attitudes and resists her attempts to modify them. They are not united internally at the cognitive level, and even less in the inmost or affective level. But as the relationship grows deeper, the husband allows his thinking to be influenced by his wife so that they may achieve unity at the cognitive level. He tries not to disagree with her and to go along with her requests or demands. Later he can grow enough to be able to give up his independence at the affective level so that he elevates her motivations and perceptions above his own. He allows her feelings to rule his thoughts and actions. Normally a man resists moving in this direction, but unless he does, he remains independent of her in his feelings. Since feelings ultimately determine thinking and doing, the unity of the couple cannot be achieved in the internal plane unless the affective self is unified.

 

When this occurs, the two partners of the couple have become one. You can see that a unit (or "oneness") formed by a couple is a higher form of human life than an individual by himself or herself. The unit of a single individual is based on selfism, even if the individual is compassionate and charitable, since the individual's self is the unit. But the unit made by a couple is higher in human functioning because it is based on the other, not the self. Mutual love and community elevate the individual into a higher form of life marked by happiness through altruism rather happiness through selfism. In the same way couples can vary in terms of how perfectly the two partners are united--external (sensorimotor), internal (cognitive), and inmost (affective). The most perfect unit is formed when the two partners are united at all three levels. This is then a permanent unit that lasts into the eternal future or "heaven."

 

It may seem that the model of unity gives unequal status to the man and the woman, and that the man seems to be blamed for everything that doesn't function just right in the couple. Actually, there is no blame involved in this model, but it is correct to say that the three models assign different role behaviors to the couple. The dominance model assigns a dominant role to the man and a submissive role to the woman in all the areas defined by culture. The equity model assigns equal power and responsibility in the relationship, so that the couple has to negotiate power sharing arrangements and decision making areas. The unity model assigns a lead role to the woman, but this primacy is not the same thing as the dominance of a man in the traditional model. The lead role of the woman in the unity model operates by the man's own voluntary submission to the wife's affections and motivations, being committed to follow them instead of his own. At any moment he is free to decide to withdraw his consent to her lead role, and then she no longer has an influence on him. He still does what he wants. This is not dominance.

 

The wife has no power to retain the lead role when the husband doesn't feel like giving assent to her. In the traditional dominance model this not the case, since the woman cannot withdraw her assent, but is forced by tradition, society, and husband to go along with the male dominant arrangement. This is why the unity model works. It is based on the man's rational understanding that she can see things that he cannot see, and therefore it is a matter of trust and compliance to her vision and motivation, over his own. If he cannot see this by rational understanding, he will maintain the relationship at the traditional dominance or equity level. To be able to see this rationally is called spiritual enlightenment (see 459 Lecture Notes for more on this topic: www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic  

 

In order to achieve internal unity with his wife, a husband has to acknowledge all the ways he keeps himself affectively separate from his wife, or all the ways he resists complete internal unity with her. To help in this self-witnessing task, I made a long list of "confessions" of those behaviors I observed myself doing in the relationship with my wife during the first twenty years. The list of over 100 items can be inspected here:
www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/doctrine-of-the-wife2.htm#confessions

What is the difference in the way men and women react to this list? If the two discuss it together, do they agree or not? Which items do they disagree on and why?

The entire chapter is part of the required readings (see below). It explores the unity model of "conjugial love." This expression is used by Swedenborg to refer to the marriages he witnessed in heaven. Selected stories about married couples which he witnessed in heaven are also part of the required readings.

 

As you go through the 100 items of my self-witnessing "confessions," try to see which area of the threefold self they involve (affective, cognitive, or sensorimotor) and what your experience has been with yourself (if you are male) or with the men you have known (if you are female). In other words, to what extent would you (if you're a man) admit to these behaviors? Or, if you're a woman, to what extent would the men you know admit to them? In what way are these behaviors contrary to the principle of unity by reciprocity and differentiation?

 

You can use the ennead chart to keep track of the relationship steps between a husband and wife, or between a man and a woman who are in an exclusive and long term relationship. Here is the chart again -- have you memorized it yet?

 

This is Table 2 (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

UNITY

7

8

9

EQUITY

4

5

6

DOMINANCE

1

2

3

 

Now let's fill in the cells with more information based on the marginals of the ennead matrix.

 

This is Table 3 (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

UNITY

zone 7
sensorimotor
unity (SU)

zone 8

cognitive
unity (CU)

zone 9
affective
unity (AU)

EQUITY

zone 4
sensorimotor
equity (SE)

zone 5
cognitive
equity (CE)

zone 6
affective
equity (AE)

DOMINANCE

zone 1
sensorimotor
dominance (SD)

zone 2
cognitive

dominance (CD)

zone 3
affective
dominance (AD)

 

 

Note the progression -- path 1,4,7. What is the difference between sensorimotor behavior as it rises from dominance to equity to unity? Similarly for the cognitive behavior of the partners -- path 2,5, 8. How does the thinking of the couple change as they progress from cognitive dominance to cognitive equity to cognitive unity? In the same way, how does affective dominance differ from affective equity then affective unity -- path 3,6,9?

 

You need to observe the threefold self of partners to know specifically what kind of interaction occurs in each of the nine zones. Observing yourself, or self-witnessing, is a powerful way of learning to understand the psychological dynamics that is operational in each zone. Understanding this allows you to accurately assess the depth of your relationship as a couple. This leads to greater satisfaction as well as influence over the course of your relationship. It also helps you understand the behavior of other couples like parents and friends. It can also guide you in raising children, helping prepare their threefold self with habits that insure receptivity to unity marriage.


 

15.  Dynamic Elements of the Ennead Chart -- Table 4

 

Section 15

 

It helps to know some dynamic elements of the nine zones. Here is the chart with some further paths illustrated.

 

This is Table 4 (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

UNITY

7b
zone 7
SU
7a ------>

<------8b
zone 8

CU
8a------>

<------ 9b
zone
9
AU
9a

EQUITY

4b
zone 4
SE
4a------>

<------ 5b
zone
5
CE
5a
------>

<------ 6b
zone 6
AE
6a

DOMINANCE

1b
zone
1
SD
1a
------>

<------ 2b
zone 2
CD
2a ------>

<------ 3b
zone 3
AD
3a

 

Consider the dominance phase -- zones 1, 2, 3. The two married partners begin their life of conjunction at the bottom of zone 1 marked 1a. Sensorimotor dominance (SD) is shown by the fact that they act physically with each other according to culture and tradition. This normally means that the husband sets the pace for their physical interactions and the wife submits or complies. While this is going, the partners also go through the phase of cognitive dominance (CD) marked as 2a. This shows by the way the husband's ideas and decisions take precedence over the wife's. While this is going on, the partners also undergo the phase of affective dominance (AD) marked as 3a. This shows by the way the husband's will is imposed on the wife's. She is expected to take care of his feelings and well being while she has to put her own feelings in the background.

 

The pattern 1a ------> 2a ------>  3a  is  followed by the reverse pattern  3b ------> 2b ------>  1a.  The first pattern is not as clear as the second pattern. For instance the cognitive dominance in zone 2a is not yet fully connected to the affective dominance in 3a. It is just building up. The pattern 3b ------> 2b ------>  1a is fully mature and established because the sensorimotor dominance is justified by the cognitive dominance, and this is fully supported by the affective dominance. The man at this point will not budge on any of the issues he defines as his prerogative as a man. At this point the relationship is vastated or consummated at the dominance phase. No further growth is possible unless the husband decides to move into the equity model. He now has to define his interactions with his wife in terms of zone 4a -- sensorimotor equity in the initial phase.

 

Husbands may make this move for several possible reasons. They are exposed to more modern and less traditional ideas. They agree to go along with some of the wife's demands or requests. They become more spiritual and realize that the wife has human rights he should respect and cater to. They feel moved by inner love for their wife and a desire to please her in many new ways. So he begins the journey to deeper intimacy and conjunction by following path  4a ------> 5a ------>  6a. They now get into the habit routines where they negotiate outcomes. The husband may still be trying to dominate the wife in these negotiations, but he now has the new habit of allowing her to argue with him until they can come to a consensus. For this, he must give up his affective and cognitive dominance. Stability at the equity level is not established until they routinely follow pattern  6b------> 5b ------>  4b. Now the husband is grounded in affective equity so that he no longer allows himself to impose his will over his wife, but must rely on cognitive equity in their discussions. He now must respect her views and opinions as much as his own. At least, he must act that way. Eventually he will be completely honest and the marriage reaches a new plateau of happiness and intimacy.

 

But for the wife, this is not the end. She desires and inwardly needs to have affective unity with her husband. She doesn't want to have to negotiate all the time (like a man wants to), and she longs for her husband to know how she feels and how she wants to be treated in their interactions. She wants him to take the initiative in going along with her perceptions and instincts. She longs for the day when she will not have to defend her rights to him, and she wants him to want to grant all her unspoken requests and desires in everyday things, like his appearance, his clothes, his manners, his thoughtfulness, his tastes, how he talks to her, how he touches her, how he thinks of her. Their marriage has reached another new state of vastation and consummation. They are no longer growing but merely marking time in this pattern of equity interactions.

 

If the husband becomes enlightened spiritually and rationally, he will want to make the move to zone 7, following the initial pattern  4a ------> 5a ------>  6a. Now for the first time in his life the husband begins to think of the relationship as going on into the afterlife to eternity. This idea motivates him to become more to his wife than a cooperative and thoughtful partner. He is now for the first time beginning to be receptive to his wife's inmost feelings and wants. He sees rationally that eternity together must mean total union, total unity, total conjunction. During these formative stages the husband experiences many lapses and he continually wants to negotiate with his wife about this or that. But if the wife continues to insist and demand affective unity, he can eventually establish himself on the pattern 9b ------> 8b ------>  7b, which when it becomes mature, is the celestial marriage, the highest consciousness and happiness that human beings are capable of. This is why it's called "heaven."

 


16.  Areas of Observations for Equity --- Table 5

Section 16

Here are some possible areas of observation for the threefold self of husband and wife.

This is Table 5

Areas of Observation for
Sensorimotor Dominance vs. Sensorimotor Equity vs. Sensorimotor Unity
Zones 1, 4 ,7

  1. Who gets to hold and control the TV remote

  2. Whose choice prevails for what home movies to watch

  3. Who chooses what restaurant to go to

  4. What interaction dynamics goes on in each other's appearance--clothes, body shape, hair, etc.

  5. How much influence is each partner willing to take from the other regarding how to behave with friends or family, or others

  6. How do they talk to each other and what does the talk reveal about their cognitive and affective self

  7. What are the conditions under which they are physically intimate and how do they act and react

  8. How do they coordinate their movements while walking, doing tasks at home, sitting beside each other

  9. What kind of facial expressions do they have when alone together

  10. What are their preferences in tastes, colors, odors, sounds, lighting

  11. Who changes topics in a conversation or introduces new topics

  12. Who is attentive to the other

  13. Who doesn't answer, looks away, avoids, ignores, walks out

  14. Who yells, expresses angry and hurtful words, hits, acts threatening, throws things

  15. Who marks dates, events, anniversaries, celebrations, birthday cards, flowers

  16. etc.

Areas of Observation for
Cognitive Dominance vs. Cognitive Equity vs. Cognitive Unity
Zones 2, 5, 8

  1. What do the two partners think of each other in terms of who controls whom, when, and how

  2. How do they use "equity philosophy" in their relationship (i.e., how they decide about sharing work, duties, money, responsibilities)

  3. What is their attitude about one partner trying to influence the other (e.g., when  trying to change the other's habits, beliefs, loyalties, personality traits)

  4. What does each partner think of the other's opinions and views (e.g., dislikes them, ignores them, isn't interested in them, argues against them, etc. -- or the opposite of these -- likes them, pays attention to them, is interested in them, goes along with them, etc.)

  5. What do the two partners seriously disagree about or argue about without resolution of the problem

  6. How much agreement or disagreement exists between the partners regarding God and their being together in the afterlife

  7. How much do the two partners let themselves be intellectually influenced by each other's ideas

  8. How clear are they to each other when discussing things (e.g., hiding things, keeping secrets, being touchy or oversensitive to some topics, talking guardedly or with reserve, -- or the opposite)

  9. How much does each believe in marriage myths like "Passion decreases with time" or "Absence makes the heart fonder" or "Wives tend to nag" or "Husands need thier own hobbies" etc.

  10. etc.

Areas of Observation for
Affective Dominance vs. Affective Equity vs. Affective Unity
Zones 3, 6, 9

  1. How motivated is each partner to remember relationship things (dates one of them considers important, celebrations, joint memories, intimate events, preferences of the other for various things like food or activities)

  2. How motivated is each to the idea of putting the partner ahead of everything else--children, friends, family, career, attachments.

  3. How committed is each partner to the idea of total unity (e.g., feeling free to raise and  talk about any topic, feeling motivated to eliminate all disagreements between them by wanting to change for the sake of the other, and so on)

  4. What motivates them to consider each other ahead of everything else, or not

  5. How much do the partners abuse or hurt each other (e.g., retaliation, punishment, sulking, staying away, breaking promises, being unfaithful or disloyal, being uncaring or unloving, manipulating, forcing)

  6. How passionate is each partner towards the other (e.g., in being romantic, in making the other feel special and exclusive, etc.)

  7. How much are the partners motivated to stay together as much as they can (e.g., shopping together, leisure activities, lunches, watching TV, hobbies, house tasks, seeing others, vs. doing separate things each on their own  (e.g., seeing friends, sports and games, hobbies, TV programs, shopping separately)

  8. How romantic are they with each other? Is she his Sweetheart? Is he her Ideal Man?

  9. etc.

Consider these questions regarding Table 5 and the ennead matrix of growth steps in marriage:

  • How would these observations help you in assessing the quality of relationship of couples you know -- yourself and others?
  • How do you explain these observations--what do they show or why are things this way?
  • How do you now understand gender relationships in terms of dominance, equity, unity, biology, culture, spirituality?

 

17.  Behavioral Indicators of One's Relationship Model -- Table 7

 

Section 17

 

Here is a table that shows some contrastive elements that differentiates the three phases of growth in marriage.

 

This is Table 7

Behavioral Indicators of
One's Relationship Model

1
Dominance Model

2
Equity Model

3
Unity Model

Partners tolerate role differences, either culturally defined or by personal preference

Yes

Yes

Yes

Partners tolerate some disagreements as something normal and inevitable

Yes

Yes

No

Partners tolerate status differences between a man and a woman

Yes

No

 No

Partners insist on exclusivity so that neither may carry on close friendships with others

No

No

Yes

Partners allow each other privacy or separate activities that the other is not involved in

Yes

Yes

No

Partners believe themselves to be married in this life and in the afterlife in heaven to eternity

No

No

Yes

Each partner is tolerant of some of the other's faults and tries to live with them

Yes

Yes

No

The man always cooperates with the woman's attempts to change him

No

No

Yes

When partners disagree they negotiate to reach a consensus 

No

Yes

No

When partners disagree the man gives in to the woman's way of thinking 

No

No

Yes

Partners can't stand being separated even for a few hours, and get very anxious

No

No

Yes

Partners are mutually interdependent and complementary in all areas

No

No

Yes

Partners have total confidence in each other, feeling free of any criticism ever

No

No

Yes

Partners never try to punish each other or retaliate for anything

No

No

Yes

While making seating choices for guests at a wedding, splitting up the married couples

Yes

Yes

No

Partners assume responsibility for each other's feelings and emotions

No

No

Yes

Partners try to make each other happy

Yes

Yes

Yes

Partners allow each other to have incompatible opinions about various topics

Yes

Yes

No

Partners never diminish in enthusiasm and admiration for each other

No

No

Yes

The original passion of love decreases as the years go by

Yes

Yes

No

etc. (add your own here)

 

 

 

 

This type of contrastive analysis shows that the dominance model has an 84% overlap in answers with the equity model but only 16% overlap with the unity model. Similarly the equity model has only a 16% overlap with the unity model. This shows that the unity model is most different from the other two. It is also the most difficult to achieve unless the husband is spiritually enlightened and has the afterlife in mind regarding their eternal conjunction.

 

Here is a way of using the ennead chart of marriage to help us define and identify specific emotions, moods, thoughts, and acts.

 

This is Table 7a (based on Table 3 above) (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

UNITY
MODEL
focus on partner

zone 7
sensorimotor
unity (SU)
altruistic
 sensations

zone 8

cognitive
unity (CU)
altruistic
thoughts

zone 9
affective
unity (AU)
altruistic
feelings

EQUITY
MODEL
focus on intellect

zone 4
sensorimotor
equity (SE)
intellectualized
sensations

zone 5
cognitive
equity (CE)
intellectualized
thoughts

zone 6
affective
equity (AE)
intellectualized
feelings

DOMINANCE
 MODEL

focus on self

zone 1
sensorimotor
dominance (SD)
 self-centered
sensations

zone 2
cognitive

dominance (CD)
self-centered
thoughts

zone 3
affective
dominance (AD)
self-centered
 
feelings


 

 

17a. Gender Discourse Within the Three Models

 

Section 17a

 

17a Part 1:  Sexy vs. Unsexy Conversational Style of Husbands

 

Consider why a wife needs girl friends to talk to, to go out shopping, to go to lunch, call each other on the phone, send birthday cards and give gifts, keep each other in the loop about happenings, etc. Husbands and boyfriends are capable of acquiring similar conversational skills if they want to be their wife's friend, and even best friend.

 

Women affiliate with each other more when their husband or boyfriend isn't acting like a friend. She tries to talk to him, to be a friend, but he resists and acts like he doesn't want to learn how to talk to her and become friends, besides just lovers and roommates. Why does the man resist this process of mental intimacy with the woman with whom he is being physically intimate?

 

As a result of this resistance, men generally don't get to find out that women intuitively evaluate the man's conversation as either unsexy or sexy. They respond with warming inner feelings to their husband or boyfriend when he uses a sexy conversational style with her, but they feel an inner turn off or aversion to their man when he uses the unsexy style of interacting with her at the verbal level. The level he is interacting with her at the verbal level is a direct indication of the level he is interacting with at the mental level. Hence it is that she feels the warming feelings throughout her chest and hands, since his sexy talk streams out from his sexy thoughts.

 

Men think that having sexy thoughts refers to talking about sex or making sexual references in his conversation with her. This is not at all what's being described here as a sexual conversational style of the man. Rather, a sexy conversational style for the husband or boyfriend refers to whether his thoughts are focused on self, the topic, or the wife. Table 7aa shows that these three levels of functioning by the husband correspond to the three models of marriage we are discussing throughout.

 

What are the contrastive characteristics of sexy vs. unsexy conversational interactions by the husband or boyfriend? Focus on self is the least sexy style. When the husband is activated by the dominance model in his mind he doesn't care if the wife finds him sexy or not. It's more important to him that he control his wife so that he can have sex with her when he wants, in the way he wants, and the wife is a secondary consideration to him, or none at all. He is full of himself. His focus is on himself. She is expected to cooperate or be obedient. So he gives himself permission to constantly interrupt the wife when she is talking. He expects her to allow him to interrupt and not try to finish what she wants to say. He acts like he is not interested in having her say what she wants to say. He acts like he is annoyed when she says what she wants to say, rather than carefully editing herself, and saying only what he would approve. Through these kinds of daily interactions, the wife's sexual feelings for him are injured, and even eliminated.

 

One of the symptoms of this killing of the sexual feeling of the wife for the husband is that husbands in the dominance model mentality frequently make jokes or complain about the fact that their wife is not giving them enough sex, or that the wife is not as hot and passionate towards him as she was when they started going out together. The letters from men that Dr. Laura selected in her book (see Section xx) often do this kind of complaining, or bad-mouthing, of their wife, and Dr. Laura supports them in this attitude, giving advice to women that they should give their men all the sex the men want, as long as the men have a regular job and aren't having extra marital affairs. However, this kind of advice is unsexy to women. It feels to them like sexual blackmail to which they have to submit, or else they are considered bad wives by their husband and by mental health professionals like Dr. Laura who works within the male dominance model of marriage counseling.

 

Besides constantly interrupting, which shows the absence of the man's focus on the wife of girlfriend, the man will persist in changing the wife's conversational focus in various ways. To the wife, this change of topic focus is felt as unsexy, irritating, frustrating, lonely. She feels alone. There is no intimacy, and yet this is what she craves. The man who calls himself her devoted husband,  and to whom she is talking, is not acting like a friend but like a stranger. She needs for him to be familiar with the topic focus she wants to maintain in the conversational interaction with her man. This is something personal about her that he needs to learn and respect. For instance, suppose the woman, as she gets home, is expressing her conflicting and disturbing feelings and thoughts about her boss and events at work. Or else, he is coming home and she is expressing her thoughts and feelings about what happened with the kids. The man can handle this conversation in an intimate sexy style or in a hurtful unsexy style.

 

He must stop interrupting her or giving advice to solve her problems. Both of these speech acts are disjunctive, unsexy, unfriendly. He needs to understand how the woman he is interacting with actually responds. He needs to consider her actual feelings. He can notice this if he watches her face when he interrupts her or starts solving "her problems." Even if he operates from the equity model, rather than the dominance model, he still is going to interrupt her and change her topic focus from where she wants to go, to where he thinks the topic should go. He retains a focus on the topic from his own perspective, but he does not focus on her. When she talks to her girlfriend she experiences the intimacy, but it is not a sexy intimacy, like it could be with the husband. So conversational intimacy with a husband or boyfriend can be a more satisfying feeling to a woman than even talking to her girlfriend or her mother and sister.

 

The husband needs to learn how to give his wife the feeling that he is interested in maintaining her topic focus. He has to show her by his speech acts that he wants to hear what she wants to say to him. He has to want this more than he wants to say something himself "for the sake of the topic or the task" or "for her own sake."  He has to sacrifice and give up his focus on himself (what he thinks should be said). He has to give up his focus on the topic or task (how her problems can be solved). He needs to make himself want to give her the feeling that he wants to hear what she wants to say. He needs to give up the idea that he has the right to make comments on what she brings up (this is his focus on the topic or task -- equity model).

 

In the sexy conversational interaction style, the husband needs to learn how to give his wife the feeling, over and over again, that he wants to hear what she wants to say. Without hurrying her and acting like he wants the process to be over already, or to go at a faster pace than it is going. But he also needs to do this by being very reactive, rather than subdued and silent or passive.

 

The husband needs to act like he is hot rather than cold to what his wife is saying and implying, directly and indirectly. To act hot is to show emotional reactions or affectivity. Men may sit quietly while their wife is talking to them. She might be doing two or three minutes of talking while her husband looks on blandly, sometimes frozen like a statue, or fidgeting like a puppy. This style of conversation is unsexy. The man needs to allow himself to be activated by his wife's spirit. He must keep his eyes on her face while she is talking. There he will find clues as to how to synchronize his breathing and vocalization to match hers. If she smiles, he smiles. If she frowns, he frowns. If she tells something she finds surprising, the husband is act surprised -- but he must not interrupt the stream of her verbalization. If she was amazed at something, he now is to be amazed also, and this visibly to her eyes. If she makes a hint of a joke, he is to pick it up and either laugh or show that he got it. This gives her the feeling that he is paying attention to her, hence values her views. This in turn gives her the feeling of self-confidence that her marriage relationship is in a good and healthy place. This allows her to experience inner peace, which she craves for and needs in order to survive as a woman.

 

17a Part 2:  Spiritual Dynamics Between Husband and Wife

 

It is important for a husband to learn to recognize his wife's humor to make sure he can laugh at those moments. His wife will be noticing whether he laughs at her jokes and can pick up on her humor and wit. It's easy for a husband to make his wife laugh because she has had to learn his brand of humor, which is often related to his family and ethnicity. But a husband is less inclined to learn his wife's sense of humor. As a result, the wife feels that she is kept away at some distance by him, in certain areas of his thinking and intelligence. Therefore the husband must try to love his wife's humor like he loves her beauty and style. For wife and husband to laugh together, especially in a simultaneous explosion, is an intimate transaction that she finds sexy and agreeable. It is a spiritual togetherness.

 

A husband must want to show that he is having a good time being with his wife, whenever and wherever -- that's his job as husband-friend and soul mate. He is to be her sweetheart forever. If a man knows this and loves it, he is a real man, an enlightened man, a wise man, a conjugial husband. He is able to ascend into conjugial love in the third heaven of his mind, where he becomes one with his soul-mate, the wife he married and loved on earth. Swedenborg interviewed many such couples who have known each other for "ages and ages" living in their endless eternity at the top portion of the human potential called the third heaven of rationality in the afterlife.

 

I assume that just about every man, if not every man, on this planet, has resisted the idea that his job in life is to give his wife the feeling that nothing else matters more to him than to be with her, to enjoy her, to have her enjoy herself by feeling free, taken care of, protected, cherished by him above all else in the universe. Every husband that Swedenborg talked to in the third heaven was in this kind of love to his wife, called conjugial love (see Section xx).

 

The most unsexy thing a husband can do is to disagree with his wife and to let her become disturbed and angry with him.

 

It's easy for a husband to drive his wife to paroxysms of frustration by his relentless refusal to go along with her on something she wants him to do or to stop doing. He just digs his heels into the carpet and refuses to budge no matter how upset she gets. This is what kills the sex factor of mental intimacy between them. His refusal no matter how upset she gets, is proof to her mind that he does not love her more than he loves himself. She feels that if he truly loved her, he would come to her rescue and not let her sink deeper and deeper into her hell feelings. How can he be so cruel and cold as to stand by and not do anything to help her get out of it? He is keeping her in excruciating hell feelings by continuing to refuse to give up his position and refusing to agree to do what she wants him to do. He just refuses, and she feels that their sex life is dying right there on the floor where he has abandoned her. Seduced and abandoned. She feels denigrated by the man who swears he loves her. She feels cheapened as a woman.

 

A man must understand this spiritual dynamic between him and the woman who is conjoining herself to him. If he sees this, it is his enlightenment. He is lucky. The worse is now over. What remains is to practice the new sexy way of interacting with his wife. He instantly discovers that he likes it, loves it. His enlightenment grows as he for the first time begins to understand what is woman.

 

Swedenborg explains that God created the universe for the purpose of conjugial couples living in the heaven of eternity. Conjugial love is the attainment of unity between husband and wife in the eternity of their heaven. This endless and constantly increasing happiness and bliss between wife and husband, is the supreme love and the highest good from which all other loves in the human race are derived from. In other words, all human potential is derived from the unity relationship between wife and husband.

 

The unity couple make a single conjoint self. What the husband thinks is always agreeable to the wife. His agreeableness comes from his affective organ operating in order, that is, in the order of his heaven, or highest potential. He had made his heaven in the order of his wife's heaven. His heart is connected, not to his own lungs, but to hers. His heart can no longer function without her respiration. His blood, or what he loves more than anything, is purified by her lungs, or what she thinks he should be doing about this or about that all day long every day. He loves what she thinks, so he does what he loves. He is content and in peace. He loves what she thinks more than what he thinks -- that's it what it means that he wants to be in her heaven rather than his own. In reality, his heaven is an imaginary heaven, a virtual heaven that is distorted by his masculine ego. 

 

The only way a husband can be saved from spending his eternity in this imaginary heaven, is to conjoin himself to his wife's heaven. God has given the wife a conjugial heaven. This is something every woman has from birth. Now the husband can become an integral part of this real heaven by conjoining himself to his wife in a unity relationship. He can do this, if he wants to, by learning to love to do what his wife tells him to do, more than he loves to do what he chooses by himself or from himself.

 

Learning a sexy conjugial conversational style with the wife is therefore the husband's first big task. It is more important than all his hobbies and guy friends put together. More important even than advancement in his career and financial growth. How a husband talks to his wife is the single most important determiner of how satisfying and content he is in the couple's sex life. This is because an unsexy conversational style inhibits and freezes over a wife's feelings of warmth in the chest and hands. When her sexuality is frozen above the waist, the wife also senses a coldness below the waist. In contrast, the husband can sense a cold in his chest above the waist, like feeling annoyance or anger against her, and he still wants to use her by having sex with her, and enjoy it and be content with it.  But not the wife. She does not want to have sex with him after he turned her into an icicle inside by the unsexy and offensive way he talks to her on a daily or regular basis. She has to spend immense mental and emotional energy fighting to resist sexual blackmail imposed on her by the husband, the marriage counselors, and social expectations of a male dominated society (see Section xx).

 

The husband must at all cost avoid sexual blackmail in his conversations with the wife.

 

Since every husband expects his wife to have sex with him on a regular basis, he is living the life of a sexual blackmailer if he uses an unsexy conversational style that she finds abusive and denigrating.

 

We men all start our marriage relationship that way, and it is to the credit of our wife that she is able to forgive our abusive verbal treatments, laying their feelings aside, tucking them away in a fold somewhere in their mental world,

so that they can continue to love their man sexually in all other ways. But this hurts them deeply, and they cannot do it endlessly. Hence, the man is putting their future unity into jeopardy. Many men blow their chance at life in eternity with his wife. Swedenborg reports that after resuscitation, every woman meets her soul-mate, recognizes him from within herself, then conjoins herself to him from within, and the two as one, now enter together their joint heaven in eternity. This soul mate is her husband from earth, if he has learned to talk to her like a conjugial husband. But it is another man, if her husband has failed to learn to treat her with dignity.

 

The first and most basic dignity, from which all other dignities follow, is the dignity of being talked to in a friendly and loving style.

 

And yet, there are few men who know how not to abuse their woman by the way they talk, stand, or gesture. For instance, suppose the wife talks to her husband, trying to get his attention and focus. The husband's response frequently is to resist her efforts or defeat her efforts in various ways that he acts. He may be looking at the TV screen while she is talking. Or holding the director in his hand, to give her the message he wants her to stop talking already. Or continuing to work at his computer, or on his bike, or whatever. Or not turning the volume of the music down. Or continuing to eat as if he was alone, instead of being in a conversation with her. Or giving her mean looks. Or giving her cold looks. Or being non-reactive, silent, cold, when she needs for him to be reactive, passionate, agreeable, supportive, pulling with where she is pulling. He is being unsexy when he could be sexy.

 

If he commits himself to the unity model by weakening in his mind the equity and dominance models, he then puts himself in a position of being able to find out what woman is, and thereby be enlightened to attain his highest potential, love, and true humanity.

 

17a Part 3:  Conversational Rules for Husbands in Conjugial Interactions

 

The first rule of conjugial conversation he can follow is to be reactive and friendly whenever his wife is talking to him, as discussed above. This he is able to do, and probably has done it during the time he was dating her and trying to convince her that he is a good man for her. But then he stopped. So now he has to start again. Pretend you are on a permanent date with a woman you are after, and this woman is your wife. The man can do this. All he needs is to want to do it. And this means to make himself want to do it, because at first, he doesn't like it. He doesn't like the idea that he has to be nice to her, or else. But he can convince himself of it, if he reflects and understands the unity model of marriage.

 

The second rule of conjugial conversation he can follow is to deny himself the right to express disagreement with her. He has to deny himself the right to say No to something she wants him to do. He already knows how to do that with his supervisor at work, but he refuses to do that with his wife. She is asking him to change something, but he insists on keeping it the way it is even though he can see that she wants it changed. This refusal is unfriendly, hostile, and abusive. Definitely unsexy. At first men might think that this a terrible way of living in your own home. And yet he expects his wife not to say No when he tells her that he wants something changed. This shows that he is following the dominance model in his own mind.

 

The third rule of conjugial conversation he can follow is create a conversational atmosphere in which his wife feels unoppressed, free, and safe because he shows that he cherishes everything about her. She is not afraid to talk intensely about what she wants him to do, and instantly jump to another topic that's on her mind, then go back to the first topic and continue telling him some more about what she wants him to do. Meanwhile he is getting hot under his tee shirt, perspiration forming on his forehead and in his armpit, as he is experiencing the heat of the passion to shut her up, to reassert himself as a man, to respond to her constant invasive instructions by snarling, snapping, and growling at her. This is the moment of freedom and liberation for him. This is when he can conquer in battle with his demon self, defeat himself, put himself under her will power, and become obedient, a supporter and friend of her wishes and wants. If he wills himself to conquer, he instantly becomes enlightened and wise. The anticipated torture of being a slave to her does not materialize in his mind. Instead he feels liberated, wise, content, in true control of himself.

 

The fourth rule of conjugial conversation he can follow is to use the conversation as a method of enhancing her mood, of making her feel young in heart and stimulated in mind. A wife conjoins herself to her husband's wisdom and truth and rationality, but not to his idiocy, irrationality, and falsities he may believe. To conjoin herself to his wisdom and rationality and intelligence means that she loves how he thinks when he thinks that way. Conversation is an expression of how we think. Hence the husband's wisdom and rationality must be behind what he says to her at any time. When he focuses on his wife, he appears to her wise and sexy. When he focuses on himself, the task, or the topic (dominance and equity models), he appears to her foolish and unsexy her. The first of wisdom for the husband is to value what his wife says to him. To value it means to give it priority over what he says to himself.

 

Of course she wants him to tell her what he thinks about something, or how to proceed in some situation. She values what he thinks when he is in an intelligent and rational mood. She depends on him. She wants to depend on him. She likes that. It's part of conjugial unity. But she doesn't want him to oppose her when telling her what he thinks. He must find a friendly and respectful way of doing this. He can learn how to do this. She is giving him plenty of chances and opportunities to become better at it, by how patient and forgiving she is of all his mistakes and abuses. But he must give her the feeling that he is trying hard, that it is more important to him than other things in his life. Then she can continue to be patient and forgive him over and over again, being full of the hope that he will change, that he is changing, that he really wants to change. She now stakes her entire life and happiness on this hope.

 

17a Part 4:  Characteristics of Husband's Threefold Self During Discourse -- Table 7aa

 

Now, having studied what was discussed above, consider this Table on the characteristics of the husband's discourse. Keep in mind that when we talk, the threefold self of the person is always involved. The words we speak, the tone of voice, the gestures -- are the external sensorimotor effects of what we are thinking and feeling on the inside. The cognitive self is doing all the thinking. But it is the affective self that motivates what we are thinking, and hence, what we are saying. So when you read the chart, think about how the husband's affective self controls the cognitive self, and the two together, control the sensorimotor talking and gesturing.

 

This is Table 7aa
Characteristics of Husband's Discourse
(READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

 

MODEL HE USES
TO GOVERN INTERACTIONS
WITH HIS WIFE

THREEFOLD SELF OF HUSBAND

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

3

UNITY
MODEL
focus on his wife

** tries to never talk in an unfriendly tone
** doesn't interrupt her
** always appears interested, involved, animated and supportive of her

** thinks that his views don't matter as much as his wife's views, since he is trying to adopt her views for the sake of unity in eternity

** loves to learn how to make his wife more important in his mind than himself
** loves mental intimacy with her as woman

2

EQUITY
MODEL

focus on topic
or task

** talks like he is always out to defend his views,  rights, or conveniences
** exaggerates and lies to control her
** calls her bad names and criticizes her when he is mad

** thinks that her views are not as relevant to the specific situation
** considers his views fair and rational
** hides his feelings to control her

** loves to retain for himself some areas of independence
** insists on it and fiercely resists no matter what, thereby making his wife suffer tortures

1

DOMINANCE
 MODEL

focus on himself

** interrupts her
** calls her denigrating names
** uses harsh tones
** uses gestures and his body to intimidate her or to punish her

** thinks that women are less intelligent than men
** dismisses her views when it suits him

** loves to dominate her more than to be intimate with her
** prefers the company of men to women

 

What the wife is hearing and experiencing from her husband are the things listed in the sensorimotor column. This is what reverberates in her threefold self, her sensations, thoughts, and feelings. From her sensations, the wife can recognize what the husband is thinking and feeling. If she regularly feels interrupted by him before she can fully express herself, and / or she feels physically intimidated or scared of him (dominance model), then she knows that he thinks of her as less intelligent, or that he thinks her views on the matter are to be dismissed. And then she also knows that he loves to dominate her more than he loves to actually be intimate with her in a mental and personal way.

 

If the wife observes that her husband talks like the main thing for him is to defend his views or rights, then she knows that he thinks his views should rule her mind because his views are fair and rational while hers are biased and feminine. And from this she then knows that he loves to put her views aside, or below his, which means to her that he is not committed to her fully and absolutely, and that he wants and intends to retain for himself areas or zones of independence in his mind and personality.

 

If the wife experiences her husband's talking as pleasant, agreeable, considerate of her feminine status and position, her consciousness enters a conjugial sphere of heavenly peace, which she can almost smell in the fragrance of the air around her, in which she sees her husband talking to her with such attention, care, and gladness of spirit and heart. She also feels this in her chest and hands, by which she senses the exciting warmth of sexual feelings, spreading from there throughout her body, if conditions allow. And from all this heavenly zone around her, she knows that her husband thinks that her views matter to him more than his own, and from this she knows that he wants to form a conjoint self with her. This is the ultimate happiness and peace she wants, and can feel, under earthly circumstances.

 

17a Part 5:  Field Exercise:  Monitoring Disjunctive vs. Conjunctive Discourse

 

After studying and understanding Table 7aa above, you can use it to make a list of your own observations of gender discourse. If you are a man, you need to observe your discourse during interactions with your wife or girlfriend. If you are a woman, you need to to observe your boyfriend's or husband's discourse with you. If you prefer instead, you can observe the discourse interactions of a couple you are familiar with. An additional variation is to observe the discourse interactions between couples in novels, movies, TV, song lyrics, and the other media.

 

You can write down short snippets of an exchange after it happened that you can clearly remember. Some of these snippets or replies may occur frequently so that you can almost predict what they will be. Each snippet can be analyzed to show that it is either a disjunctive exchange or a conjunctive exchange. Longer snippets or conversational interactions should be recorded and transcribed since you cannot rely on memory.

 

Each verbal snippet or longer conversational exchange, needs to be analyzed using the threefold self as defined throughout the Tables in these Lecture Notes. In other words, you can use the ennead matrix of the threefold self within the three models, as a template to analyze or locate the characteristics of the verbal exchange.

 

Here are examples of disjunctive replies of husbands and boyfriends

 

1) Negation, Denial, Refusal

 

  • she says "Let's do x" he says "Let's do y"

  • she says "That's not what it is. This is what it is." he says "No way, it's that"

  • she says "It's not the right way to it" he says "Yes, it is."

  • she says "You did x" he says "No, I did y"

  • etc.

These are disjunctive replies. They happen very frequently in the dominance and equity models, but only sometimes with the unity model, at the beginning before the husband is able to control himself fully.

 

If you are a woman and are analyzing the exchanges with your partner, you can add how his disjunctive replies make you feel, what your reactions and thoughts are. Wives and girlfriends have an immense capacity to take abuse from their partner. They are willing to put up with this negativity in their partner because they have hope that he will eventually change his model of interacting with her. She is looking forward to his awakening and enlightenment when he will want to treat her nice and with decency.

 

Here are the equivalent examples of conjunctive replies of husbands and boyfriends:

  • she says "Let's do x" he says "Ok, if you want to."

  • she says "That's not what it is. This is what it is." he says "All right, I'll adopt your view on the situation."

  • she says "It's not the right way to it" he says "I understand what you are pointing out. OK, I agree."

  • she says "You did x" he says "Strange how I remembered y, but OK, thanks, for setting the matter straight."

  • etc.

These are conjunctive replies. They happen once in a while with the dominance and unity models, but not enough to make the woman's life much easier on the whole. But when the husband is governing his interactions from his understanding of the unity model, he compels himself to inhibit disjunctive replies to his wife, and to give her conjunctive replies. Disjunctive replies are unsexy, while conjunctive replies maintain a romantic tension between husband and wife that is delightful to both of them. God is maintaining the wife's mind to fit conjunctively with the husband's mind, and the husband's mind to fit conjunctively with the wife's mind. In this conjunctive mind, the couple become one merged individual. Swedenborg presents much evidence from his observations of couples in eternity, that shows how the conjunctive self of a couple in conjugial unity, is incredibly superior and empowered. Wife feels competed and endlessly loved; husband feels expanded and endlessly enthusiastic. This is to attain the truly human stage in our immortality. It is expressed by popular knowledge as the state of being "soul-mates forever."

 

2) Disloyalty, Secrecy, Lies

  • he talks to the children about his wife, not telling her what he says

  • he talks to his guy friends or strangers about his wife, in ways she wouldn't like

  • he tells her lies about various things he knows or does, as a way of controlling her

  • he keeps her out of the loop without explaining to her that he does or why he does

  • he embarrasses her in public in front of others by contradicting her or criticizing her, or by bringing up things that she considers private between the two of them

  • etc.

These are disjunctive conversational acts performed by the husband to his wife. They happen very frequently in the dominance and equity models, but only sometimes with the unity model, at the beginning before the husband is able to control himself fully.

 

The equivalent conjunctive acts would be these:

  • he never talks to the children about his wife, without telling her what he said

  • when he talks to his guy friends or strangers about his wife, he acts like his wife is listening

  • he never tells her lies about what he knows or does, by avoiding to act in a way she wouldn't approve if she knew all the circumstances

  • he keeps her in the loop about all things without exception, explaining to her all that he does and why

  • etc.

These are conjunctive moves the husband makes towards his wife. It is his will and desire to become mentally intimate with her, to share minds with this woman. He can easily see from this elevated perspective that if he deceives her, or keeps what he thinks from her, he cannot be fully united to her in eternity because that kind of uniting must be total mental unity.

 

It works differently for the wife. She carries secrets in her heart that she may not want to share with her husband. These secrets are not lies and deceptions, like it is for husbands when they keep secrets. The wife's secrets are spiritual secrets, not physical and social secrets, like the secrets of the husband. His secrets are disjunctive because the purpose of keeping things from his wife is to be able to get away doing disjunctive things that oppose unity. But the secrets of the wife that are spiritual are for conjunctive reasons. She is afraid that if she told him what she knows about their unity or lack of it, he wouldn't be able to handle in a right way, and his reaction would be deeply disjunctive. So in her zeal to protect their potential conjugial unity, the wife keeps spiritual secrets from her husband.

 

Swedenborg was once interviewing a group of wives in one of the heavens of their eternity, They told him they did not want Swedenborg to write down and reveal to the public on earth, certain of these spiritual secrets that wives knew about their husbands, and which they had just discussed with him in the interviews. They told him that if husbands knew of these spiritual secrets of their wives, they would turn cold towards them, first mentally, then sexually, and this would be the end of their happiness in the marriage. But Swedenborg answered that he had no choice but to report accurately all that he was able to observe in the spiritual world of mental eternity.

 

What are these spiritual secrets?

 

Swedenborg describes them as a special womanly perception in the interior mind that God gives the wife about her husband's unconscious or subconscious affections, desires, proclivities, inner make up. In my own experience as a husband who is striving to govern my actions through the principles of the unity model, I found that my wife's extrasensory perception of my unconscious or subconscious affections, have always been correct in the long run. A wife can share more and more of these secrets as her husband progresses and practices with the unity model in his mind. It requires that I give more credence to what she says to me about me, than what I say to myself about me. This was a huge battle in my mind for many years.

 

At first I flatly rejected such an idea, while I lived the dominance and equity models in my mind. My philosophy of justification was that we are all individual human beings and we each have the right to be who we are, etc. She was to be responsible for her self and emotions and coping, and I was to be responsible for mine. We can help each other of course, since we love one another, but we cannot invade or occupy each other's respective mental zones or territory. But eventually I started adopting the unity model as I started studying the Writings of Swedenborg in 1981, at the age of 43, as I was starting my second marriage with my new wife. This required me to trust my wife's thinking and judgment as much as I trusted my own, and eventually, more than I trusted my own.

 

This is the right thing to do because the wife has intuitions and perceptions from God about the husband that he himself does not have. Through creating and managing this difference in the mind of the couple, God is trying to bring the husband and wife together into a unity that will continue into their endless conjugial eternity (see Section xx). The husband must give up relying on himself independently of his wife, for any single decision he makes or idea he has about himself and his wife. By accepting and loving this reliance and dependence on his wife, the husband makes it possible for the couple to become a conjoint mind or self. This is what the wife has been patiently and hopefully waiting for. Now she can be fulfilled as a woman, and he can be fulfilled as a true man.

 

3) Abusiveness, Swearing, Yelling

  • he continues to use derogatory names when he is in a bad mood, or when he is mad at her and is criticizing her for something she has done or not done. Examples include the "b" words used to put women down, the "f" words to show disrespect to women, or else comparing women to their feminine parts and organs, and using prejudiced expressions to refer to what women do like "nagging" , "complaining", "never being satisfied" etc.

  • he raises his voice in a harsh and menacing tone, trying to intimidate her, yelling, throwing, breaking things, walking out, and other forms of abuse

  • he uses silence as a form of passive aggressive control over his wife, or he refuses to address the specific point she wants him to address, talking around it instead of to it, even making jokes about it or else denying it, which puts her in a cruel double bind as he does one thing, while claiming he is not doing it

  • he fails to keep up with the topics she has already mentioned earlier in the conversation, or in an earlier conversation to which she wants this is a follow up. But he acts like she has to start all over again. This exhausts her emotionally and makes her feel desperate. Will her husband ever start loving her more than himself?

  • etc.

These are disjunctive conversational acts performed by the husband against his wife. They happen very frequently in the relationship of the married partners, until the husband is enlightened and becomes willing to start being governed by the principles of the unity model.

 

4) After Disturbing His Wife, Not Making Up Adequately Enough

 

  • he doesn't make up for his disjunctive acts but expects her to forget about it after awhile

  • he refuses to accept the idea that his wife needs for him to make up adequately enough

  • he continues to insist in his mind that saying Sorry, or Giving a special treat or gift, is enough

  • he continues to hang on to the false idea that if she loves him, she should forgive him

  • he uses all sorts of justifications to explain away what he did to her, which is to cause her to be disturbed, and instead talks about why he did what he did, refusing to address or acknowledge what he did to her feelings

  • etc.

These are disjunctive acts that hurt the future unity of the couple, now and in eternity. In my own experience, I have had to learn in middle age that the thread or mesh that holds my wife and me together, is an actual thread made of spiritual or mental substances (see Section xx). When this thread or mesh work is injured by the husband's disjunctive act, the wife feels it on the surface of her life, making her miserable and anxious. But the husband is able to push it away on the backburner of his feelings, thus hardly becoming aware of it, and not paying any attention to what he is aware of. In my case I had to compel myself to pay attention to her emotional distress caused by my disjunctive act. I had to repent and repair the damage. She can feel when I repent and when I go through the motions. I had to compel myself to perform the conjunctive acts that repaired the injured thread in my wife's heart.

This required that I humble myself, which took a long time for me to accept and be willing to do it.

  • he compels himself to make up for every disjunctive acts, knowing that she cannot forgive and forget without it

  • he accepts the new idea that his wife cannot repair by herself the mental injury he caused to her

  • he learns new and more adequate ways of apologizing, realizing that treats and gifts are also necessary, but not sufficient to prove to her that he is sorry for causing her emotional stress

  • he abandons the false idea that if she loves him, she should forgive him, seeing forgiveness in terms of injured threads, rather than verbal expressions

  • he stops using justifications to explain away what he did to her, and admits that he was wrong in causing her to become disturbed. Instead, he talks about what he did to her feelings.

  • etc.

These are conjunctive acts of repair. The husband or boyfriend lover has to teach himself that when a woman gives herself physically and sexually, she does it either in freedom or under pressure. If she has sexual activity with him under pressure, then there is no internal conjunction between her and the man. It is merely an outward act that may hurt her physically and socially, but not mentally and spiritually. But when she gives herself freely, without pressure and without being motivated by some ulterior motive or plan, then she forms thereby an inner relationship and tie, an inner conjunction that is localized in the mental threads that unites their minds and hearts. When she is in this type of relationship, he can hurt and injure these conjunctive ties that unite them mentally and spiritually. And a frequent way that a man hurts these conjugial threads, is by not making up for his disjunctive acts.

 

It is extremely difficult for a man to believe that he can be incredibly happier and masculine if he puts his wife ahead of every thing else in the universe. Even God is to be served through his wife, not apart from his wife, according to the unity model of thinking. This is obviously true when you recall that God made conjugial love between husband and wife the highest love in all creation, which means, that everything else you can name, is not for its own sake, but for the sake of contributing to conjugial love in the human race. For the husband to serve God through his wife is to honor God's highest purpose for creating him. But this is only true from the perspective of the unity model which is based on conjugial togetherness in eternity, as observed and confirmed by Swedenborg. For more on this subject, you can read Volume 1 of Theistic Psychology which discusses in detail the positive and negative bias in science:

www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic/ch1.htm

 


 

18.  Happiness and Unhappiness on the

Ennead Chart -- Table 7b

 

Section 18

 

Now let's use Table 7a to help us identify various concepts in marriage. Let's start with happiness, since this is a critical part of marriage. In Table 7b I have added one specification of being happy in each model. Whenever we operate within that model, what makes us happy is specified in ALL CAPS in each zone.

 

This is Table 7b (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

UNITY
MODEL
focus on partner

zone 7
sensorimotor
unity (SU)
altruistic
 sensations
-----
PLEASURING THE PARTNER

zone 8

cognitive
unity (CU)
altruistic
thoughts
-----
THINKING THAT THEY ARE EACH OTHER'S MORE AND MORE

zone 9
affective
unity (AU)
altruistic
feelings
-----
STRIVING TO ALIGN SELF WITH PARTNER'S PREFERENCES AND SUCCEEDING

EQUITY
MODEL
focus on intellect

zone 4
sensorimotor
equity (SE)
intellectualized
sensations
-----
GIVING PLEASURE AND RECEIVING PLEASURE IN EQUAL AMOUNT

zone 5
cognitive
equity (CE)
intellectualized
thoughts
-----
THINKING THAT THEY EACH MUST RESPECT THE OTHER'S POINT OF VIEW

zone 6
affective
equity (AE)
intellectualized feelings
-----
STRIVING TO JUSTIFY ONESELF TO THE PARTNER AND SUCCEEDING

DOMINANCE
 MODEL

focus on self

zone 1
sensorimotor
dominance (SD)
 self-centered
sensations
BEING PLEASURED BY THE PARTNER

zone 2
cognitive

dominance (CD)
self-centered
thoughts
THINKING THAT THE PARTNER IS COMPLIANT IN ALL WAYS

zone 3
affective
dominance (AD)
self-centered
 feelings
STRIVING TO MAINTAIN PRIMACY OVER PARTNER AND SUCCEEDING

 

After you processed the meaning of each zone and its example (in ALL CAPS), focus on each portion of the threefold self by looking at the table up and down within each column.

 

For instance, in the sensorimotor areas (zones 1, 4, 7) I give examples relating to physical intimacy. When husbands try to behave according to the dominance model, their sensorimotor happiness depends on the expression of self-centered sensations like "being pleasured by the partner." This is another expression of the underlying model: sensorimotor dominance (zone 1).

 

When husbands try to behave according to the equity model, their sensorimotor happiness is different. It now depends on more intellectualized sensations motivated by their equity model (zone 4). Their focus is intellectualized upon equity in everything in the relationship. It is an "economic" focus and involvement, and comes out as a concern for equal pleasure. They want it to be balanced so that neither gives more than they receive (sensorimotor equity, zone 4).

 

When husbands try to behave according to the unity model, their sensorimotor happiness is still different. It now depends on more altruistic sensations motivated by their unity model (zone 7). Their focus is upon unity in everything in the relationship. It is an "altruistic" focus and involvement, and comes out as a concern for the partner's pleasure. The focus on one's own pleasure (zone 1) and the focus on the equal amount of pleasure (zone 4) now changes to a focus on the partner's pleasure. One's own pleasure may be there but only as an indirect result of succeeding in giving pleasure to the partner (sensorimotor unity, zone 7).

 

After you processes the sensorimotor column, move to the cognitive column.

 

For husbands choosing to behave according to the dominance model, "thinking that the partner is compliant in all ways" (zone 2), is necessary for their happiness. If they notice any hesitation or refusal in the compliance of the wife,  they immediately begin to exert their pressure and power to make the wife comply. Husbands have different styles and methods for doing this, some using violence, some persuasive strategies, some relationship blackmail (e.g., holding back, pouting, and staying away), etc.

 

But when they move deeper in the relationship to the equity model, husbands "think that they each must respect the other's point of view" (zone 6). This intellectualized economy governs their relationship in all its details. To be happy, husbands operating with the equity model must think that they each respect the other's point of view. Often this interpretation is delusional. When the wife wants to influence the husband in a decision, he reacts by saying that she is not respecting his point of view. Clearly this is not adaptive to a close relationship. The wife has to be able to express her true feelings without her husband accusing her of not respecting his point of view.

 

When husbands are willing to finally move into a closer relationship, their cognitive unity is their happiness, that is, "thinking that they are each other's more and more" (zone 8). The husband is alert and looks for any sign that his wife thinks differently than he does on some issue. He then explores it with her, being motivated to eliminate ideas in his mind that are not compatible with cognitive unity between them (zone 8).

 

Finally look up and down the third column.

 

Husbands choosing to operate according to the dominance model will strive to "maintain primacy over the partner" and must see himself succeeding if he is going to be happy (zone 3). This is an expression of his self-centered feelings that are motivated by his affective dominance and the satisfaction it gives him to achieve it and maintain it, even increase it as he gets older.

 

Husbands choosing the operate according to the equity model will constantly be involved in justifying themselves to the partner" (zone 6). This is an expression of their intellectualized feelings that come from a focus on affective equity. This is non-adaptive to achieving a deeper relationship because the husband's economic focus on equity keeps the wife out of his heart. His focus on equity in feelings is a strategy to maintain his affective independence. The wife doesn't want him to see himself as independent in his feelings, hence independent of her. This threatens her influence on him, by which she strives to conjoin him to herself. By insisting on affective independence through equity considerations, the husband remains cold in his heart towards the wife. He has removed any power she may have over him. Without this affective influence by the wife on the husband's feelings and motivations, the husband cannot achieve a deeper relationship with her.

 

On the other hand, husbands who choose to move forward and behave according to the unity model, are happiest when they succeed in aligning every single feeling and affection they have with the wife's feelings and affections (zone 9). To "align" means to "make it agree with" by eliminating anything that does not agree. This is the maximum closeness that they can achieve together. Once this affective unity defines the marriage relationship, the partners can grow spiritually into a celestial couple that can live in conjugial love to eternity, as discussed in our Readings.

 

What would the previous Table above (7b) look like for "unhappiness"?

 

This is Table 7c (READ TABLE FROM BOTTOM UP)

MODEL THAT GOVERNS THEIR INTERACTIONS

THREEFO0LD SELF

SENSORIMOTOR
(external)

COGNITIVE
(internal)

AFFECTIVE
(inmost)

UNITY
MODEL
focus on partner

zone 7
sensorimotor
unity (SU)
altruistic
 sensations
-----
NOT BEING INVOLVED IN PLEASURING THE PARTNER

zone 8

cognitive
unity (CU)
altruistic
thoughts
-----
THINKING THAT THEY ARE NOT PERFECT FOR EACH OTHER 

zone 9
affective
unity (AU)
altruistic
feelings
-----
SEEING THE PARTNER AS  INDIFFERENT OR INDEPENDENT 

EQUITY
MODEL
focus on intellect

zone 4
sensorimotor
equity (SE)
intellectualized
sensations
-----
NOT RECEIVING BACK AS MUCH AS ONE GAVE TO THE OTHER

zone 5
cognitive
equity (CE)
intellectualized
thoughts
-----
THINKING THAT THE PARTNER IS GETTING AWAY WITH NOT DOING THEIR SHARE

zone 6
affective
equity (AE)
intellectualized feelings
-----
FEELING COMPETITIVE AND ARGUING WITHOUT RESOLUTION 

DOMINANCE
 MODEL

focus on self

zone 1
sensorimotor
dominance (SD)
 self-centered
sensations
HAVING TO PLEASURE THE PARTNER

zone 2
cognitive

dominance (CD)
self-centered
thoughts
THINKING THAT THE PARTNER IS REBELLING AND REFUSING TO BE SUBMISSIVE

zone 3
affective
dominance (AD)
self-centered
 feelings
BEING ABUSED OR PHYSICALLY INTIMIDATED BY THE PARTNER

 

Now practice applying tables 7a and 7b to other important traits in being married: unhappiness, feeling separated, feeling close, being satisfied, being respected, being disrespected, getting along, going through a difficult period, etc.

 

The unity model does not tolerate any differences or disagreements between husband and wife. That's the meaning of all the "No" entries in Table 8 below.


 

Contrasting the Three Models -- Table 8

 

Section 19

 

This is Table 8

Yes = tolerates at times a difference or disagreement about that issue
No = never tolerates a difference or disagreement about that issue

1
Dominance Model

2
Equity Model

3
Unity Model

What restaurant to go to

Yes

Yes

No

What to order on the menu

Yes

Yes

No

What movie to go to or rent

Yes

Yes

 No

What either should wear somewhere

Yes

Yes

No

What friends to socialize with

Yes

Yes

No

How to deal with money or investments

Yes

Yes

 No

How to deal with the children

No

Yes

No

Where to live

No

Yes

No

How to deal with family

Yes

Yes

No

What political party to support

Yes

Yes

 No

Physical abuse or violence

No

No

No

What they laugh at

Yes

Yes

Yes

What they feel sentimental about

Yes

Yes

Yes

 

     

etc. (write your own)

     

 

     

 

Note that Table 8 shows different categories of items as defined by the pattern of answers. There are four patterns illustrated by items:

  • Yes, Yes, No

  • No, Yes, No

  • No, No, No

  • Yes, Yes, Yes

 

You will note that the unity model shows "No" in most categories illustrated. Within this model of operation, husband and wife each feel disturbed for the other whenever any difference or disagreement is detected between them. They see a disagreement, no matter how small, no matter about what, as a threat to their unity. They are each strongly motivated to realign their own affections to fit with the other's affections, so that the disagreement is immediately removed and not left festering and creating a rift or division in their mental unity. Further, the unity model, as expressed in the Doctrine of the Wife (see Readings) assumes that it is the husband who always realigns his feelings to agree with the wife whenever a difference between them comes out into the open. The rationale for this apparent one-sidedness is explained in the Doctrine of the Wife.

 

But when the married partners  are still operating from the other two models, they tolerate many differences and disagreements as part of their normal marriage relationship and partnership. Their goal is not unity, but peace and comfort. In the equity model they want to live and let live within agreed upon boundaries. In the dominance model the separateness is defined by tradition and the constant striving for dominion, usually male over female. That is why the majority of items for these two models is "Yes" for tolerating differences and disagreements.

 

Remember that the four "patterns" reflect habitual behaviors motivated by the marriage model they subscribe to, which governs the way each interacts with the other. But people do not follow their own model in a perfectly consistent manner. The "model" behavior or pattern may disintegrate at times when one or both partners revert to an earlier model of interaction or pattern. For example, a husband who is operating from the unity model may become quarrelsome and non-cooperative all of a sudden with some touchy issue which he has not yet resolved in his personality. His wife can perceive this and has no choice for the moment but to put up with her husband's lapse to a lower form of mental conjunction with her. Soon the husband will recover and feel guilty because he can see from his doctrine of the unity model, that keeping himself separated is contrary to his highest goals. He will express his guilt appropriately to repair the injury to his sweetheart wife so that she can bring herself to accept him again into her inner self and thus make a unity with him.

Here is a useful exercise for identifying how couples are portrayed on TV and the media. Watch the shows or movies you want to analyze and take notes while watching. You can do this alone or with your partner or friend.

Write down the events, words, or attitudes you observed. Note the name of the show, the characters involved, and the date or week you made your observations. List each event or episode separately.


 

20.  Examples of Anti-Unity Values (AUVs) -- Table 9

 

Section 20

Examples of anti-unity values (AUVs) that are often promoted in the media include:

This is Table 9

  1. Living together unmarried

  2. Having children out of wedlock

  3. Making each other jealous on purpose

  4. Adultery for various reasons

  5. Promiscuity and bi-sexuality

  6. Sexy dressing for men other than one's partner

  7. Having a same sex best friend who is placed ahead of the partner or in competition for certain things

  8. Having a heterosexual best friend who is placed ahead of the partner or in competition for certain things

  9. Same sex friends going out as a group for fun and entertainment without their partners

  10. Flirting with other gender as retaliation against one's partner (or other reason)

  11. Separate interests and activities accepted for partners

  12. Manipulating partner through deception

  13. Accepting the idea that it's OK to "agree to disagree" about some things

  14. Promoting the idea that one should not try to change one's partner but should accept them with their faults, etc.

  15. Girls only or boys only entertainment

  16. Acceptance of the idea that men are more important

  17. Promoting the idea that men are more rational than women

  18. Promoting the idea that women are generally frivolous as part of their gender

  19. Making it look normal for a man to exploit women

  20. Making it look normal for a man to abuse women

  21. Making it look normal for a man to have prerogatives or perks that women should accept and honor (e.g., serving men, doing what they want no matter what, being dominant, etc.)

  22. Making it look like what women say and think as less important

  23. Accepting the idea that a man does not need to "grovel" when he apologizes for something bad he did to her (the minimum is enough and she should not ask for more even if her feelings are still hurt or else she is being "unreasonable" etc.)

For each of the AUVs you observe, try to explain why that scene is promoting an AUV -- in what way is that type of event or attitude contrary to the formation of unity between partners?

For example, item 13:  "Accepting the idea that it's OK to "agree to disagree" about some things" promotes the acceptance of permanent separate attitudes about some issues, whether politics, sports, or family. When partners are motivated to achieve external and internal unity they need to discuss their opinions and beliefs in a helpful way until they are able to resolve what they disagree on. Disagreements of opinion or attitude, if accepted as permanent, prevents complete unity since each disagreement has assumptions and attitudes behind it or within it, and these must somehow come out in their relationship, leading to avoidance and separation in that area.

Or take for another example, item 14: "Promoting the idea that one should not try to change one's partner but should accept them with their faults, etc." This is an anti-unity value (AUV) because one cannot achieve unity if the partners are not free to influence one another in personality traits. Besides that, partners who are moving towards unity are motivated to become for the other what the other wants and needs. The wife strives to please her husband and to get to know his tastes, sense of humor, preferences, etc., so that she can make him happy and feel attached to her. The husband strives to make the wife comfortable and content by cutting out his behaviors and traits that upset her and by learning new behaviors that she likes. In this way both the husband and the wife strive to change for the other so that they may become as one. But if the husband insists on being the way he is, or the way he was prior to the marriage, he puts a limit to how close and intimate the two can grow together.

Once you have your own list of observations, the next step is to test it out. You can do so in various ways, depending on how you decide to proceed. One possibility would be to make up a Form with scales and definitions, then use the Form while you are watching similar shows. Fill out the Form while you are watching.

Note:  It might be helpful to consult examples in the Generational Curriculum where students worked to develop DBB Ratings for TV shows ("Drivers Behaving Badly") -- see this directory:  www.drdriving.org/articles/dbb.htm

See also the Song Analysis done by prior generation students, available here:

www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/student3/amyl/public_html/499/songls.html

Quoting from the book Conjugial Love (1763)  by Emanuel Swedenborg:

321. (4) People who before had lived with their partners in a state of truly conjugial love do not wish to marry again, except for reasons dissociated from conjugial love. People who before had lived in a state of truly conjugial love do not wish to marry again after the death of their partner for the following reasons:

1. Because they have been united in respect to their souls and so in respect to their minds; and this union, being a spiritual one, is an actual coupling of the soul and mind of one to the soul and mind of the other, which cannot in any way be dissolved. (That this is the nature of spiritual union we have already shown here and there previously.)

[2] 2. Because they have been united also in respect to their bodies, by the wife's reception of the propagations of the husband's soul, and thus by an implantation of his life in hers, by which a maiden becomes a wife; and conversely by the husband's reception of the wife's conjugial love, which disposes the inner faculties of his mind and at the same time the inner and outer faculties of his body into a state capable of receiving love and perceiving wisdom, a state which turns him from a youth into a husband (on which subject, see nos. 198, 199 above).

[3] 3. Because an atmosphere of her love continues to emanate from the wife, and an atmosphere of his intellect from the husband; and this perfects the bonds between them, and with its pleasant ambience surrounds them and unites them (again, see above, no. 223).

[4] 4. Because married partners so united think of and yearn for eternity in their marriage, and eternal happiness for them is founded on that idea (see no. 216).

[5] 5. Because in consequence of the foregoing they are no longer two but one person, that is, one flesh.

[6] 6. Because such a oneness cannot be sundered by the death of the other partner - a fact manifestly evident to visual sight in the spirit.

[7] To these reasons we will add this new one:

7. Because the two are not actually separated by the death of one; for the spirit of the deceased continues to dwell with the spirit of the one not yet deceased, and this until the death of the other, at which time they come together again and are reunited, loving each other even more tenderly than before, because they are in the spiritual world.

From these circumstances comes the following inevitable result, that people who before had lived in a state of truly conjugial love do not wish to marry again.

If they nevertheless do afterwards enter into something like a marriage, it is for reasons dissociated from conjugial love; and these reasons are all external ones. As for example: If there are little children in the house and there is need to provide for their care. If the house is a large one, equipped with servants of both sexes. If responsibilities outside the house divert the mind from domestic concerns at home. If there is need for joint assistance and shared duties. And other like reasons. (Conjugial Love Number 321)

229. (20) For people who desire truly conjugial love, the Lord provides similar partners, and if they are not found on earth, He provides them in heaven. This results from the fact that all marriages of truly conjugial love are provided by the Lord. They come from Him, as may be seen above in nos. 130, 131. But how they are provided in heaven, I once heard described by angels as follows:

The Lord's Divine providence is most specific and most universal in connection with marriages and in its operation in marriages, because all delights of heaven flow from the delights of conjugial love, like sweet waters from a gushing spring. It is therefore provided that conjugial pairs be born, and they are raised and continually prepared for their marriages under the Lord's guidance, neither the boy nor the girl being aware of it. Then, after a period of time, the girl - now a marriageable young woman - and the boy - now a young man ready to marry - meet somewhere, as though by fate, and notice each other. And they immediately recognize, as if by a kind of instinct, that they are a match, thinking to themselves as from a kind of inner dictate, the young man, 'she is mine,' and the young woman, 'he is mine.' Later, after this thought has for some time become settled in the minds of each, they deliberately talk about it together and pledge themselves to each other in marriage.

We say as though by fate, by instinct and as from a kind of dictate, when we mean by Divine providence, because when one is unaware that it is Divine providence, that is how it appears. For the Lord unveils their inner similarities so that they notice each other. (Conjugial Love Number 229)

You can explore the Numbers cited in this passage, where much more detail is presented, by going to the online version of the Conjugial Love book at:  www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/CL/clintro.htm  

 


 

For further information about Swedenborg's Writings see the Textbook of Theistic Psychology at:  www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic  


 

 

Readings

  1. Gender Discourse by Deborah Tannen (Oxford University Pres, 1994)

  2. The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands by Laura Schlessinger (Harper/Collins Publishers, 2001)

  3. The Lazy Husband by Joshua Coleman (St. Martin's Press, 2005)

  4. The Unity Model of Marriage by Leon James and Diane Nahl (2006). Online Lecture Notes available here
      www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy24/409b-g24-lecture-notes.htm

  5.  Conjugial Love by Emanuel Swedenborg (1763). Available online at:
     
    www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/CL/clintro.htm 

  6. Lecture Notes on Theistic Psychology (2006) by Leon James. Available online at:
    www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy24/459-g24-lecture-notes.htm

  7. Textbook of Theistic Psychology (2006) by Leon James. Available online at::
    www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/theistic


Additional Readings Available on the Web

 

Articles on Marriage from the Theistic Psychology Perspective

  1. The Spiritual Origin of Sexuality and Gender: The Difference That Makes the Difference by John K. Billings.         
            www.baysidechurch.org/studia/studia.cfm?ArticleID=188&detail=1&VolumeID=37&AuthorID=4
  2. Conjugial Love by Rt. Rev. Willard D. Pendleton
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/sbm50wdp.htm 
  3. The "Guardian of Conjugial Love"  by Rev. Ormond Odhner
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/h55odo.htm  
  4. Why Two Sexes?  by Rev. Norman H. Reuter
           www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/so78nr.htm 
  5. The Eternity of Marriage by Rev. Frederick L. Schnarr
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/sbm67fs.htm 
  6. The Conjugial with Men and Women by Rev. Erik Sandström, Sr.
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/sbm67es.htm 
  7. The History of the Conjugial with Mankind by Rev. Geoffrey Childs
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/sbm79gh.htm 
  8. The Nature of the Celestial Marriage by Rev. Geoffrey Howard
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/sbm73gh.htm 
  9. The Purpose in Marriage by Rt. Rev. Willard D. Pendleton
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/sbm75wdp.htm 
  10. The Primitive of Man by Rt. Rev. George deCharms
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/sbm75gdc.htm 
  11. The Law Against Adultery Thou shalt not commit adultery (Exodus 20:14)  by Rev. Hugo Lj. Odhner
            www.swedenborgdigitallibrary.org/nci/homo/ha72hlo.htm 
  12. Paradigm Shift and the Issue of Women in the Clergy By Vera Goodenough Dyck
                newearth.org/vgd/psiwc.php 
  13. Doctrine of the Wife for Husbands:  A Spiritual Practice for Achieving Unity -- Several articles by Leon James
                (1) www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy/instructor/gloss/wife.html
                (2) www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy/instructor/gloss/wife2.html
                (3) www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy/instructor/gloss/wife3.html
                (4) www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/v3ch2-nonduality.html
                (5) www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/v3ch2-nonduality.html#_Toc22705816
                (6) www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/doctrine-of-the-wife2.htm

Prior Generation Student Reports
Student Reports on Marriage
My Understanding of the Unity Model of Marriage

Reports From Generation 24 (Spring 2006)

  1. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/kanemaru/kanemaru-409b-g24-report2.htm

  2. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/tabon/tabon-409b-g24-report2.htm

  3. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/adams/adams-409b-g24-report2.htm 

  4. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/montague/montague-409b-g24-report2.htm

  5. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/Antonio/antonio-409b-g24-report2.htm

  6. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/lagondino/lagondino-409b-g24-report2.htm

  7. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/stipek/stipek-409b-g24-report2.htm

  8. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/buchner/buchner-409b-g24-report2.htm

  9. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/lau/lau-409b-g24-report2.htm

  10. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/kanemaru/kanemaru-409b-g24-report1.htm

  11. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/saito/saito-409b-g24-report1.htm

  12. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/buchner/buchner-409b-g24-report1.htm

  13. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/stipek/stipek-409b-g24-report1.htm

  14. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2006/adams/adams-409b-g24-report1.htm

 

Reports From Generation 23 (Fall 2005)

  1. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/takahashi/Takahashi-409b-g23-report2.htm

  2. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/ventrucci/ventrucci-409b-g23-report2.htm

  3. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/funtanilla/funtanilla-409b-g23-report2.htm

  4. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/peters/peters-409b-g23-report2.htm

  5. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/bernstein/bernstein-409b-g23-report2.htm

  6. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/ethier/ethier-409b-g23-report2.htm

  7. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/mcwade/mcwade-409b-g23-report2.htm

  8. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/patinio/patinio-409b-g23-report2.htm

  9. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/ramirez/ramirez-409b-g23-report2.htm

  10. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bf2005/paulino/paulino--409b-g23-report2.htm

 

Readings From Generation 22 (Spring 2005)
Student Reports on Marriage

My Understanding of the Unity Model of Marriage

  1. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2005/horst/409b-g22-report2.htm

  2. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2005/kwan/409b-g22-report2.htm

  3. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2005/kikuchi/409b-g22-report2.htm

  4. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2005/luney/report2.htm

  5. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2005/nakamura/409b-g22-report2.htm

  6. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leon/409bs2005/regucera/409b-g22-report2.htm

 

Readings From Generation 21 (Fall 2004)
Student Reports on Marriage

My Understanding of the Unity Model of Marriage

  1. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bf2004/sabey/409b-g21-report2.htm
  2. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bf2004/valle/409b-g21-report2.htm
  3. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bf2004/lacy/409b-g21-report2.doc.htm
  4. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bf2004/leung/409b-g21-report2.htm
  5. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bf2004/garhartt/409b-g21-report2.doc.htm
  6. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bf2004/arakawa-longboy/report2.htm
  7. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bf2004/Villegas/REPORT%20TWO.htm

 

Readings From Generation 20 (Spring 2004)
Student Reports on Marriage

Gender Unity--Annotated Bibliography

  1. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/duclos/report1.htm
  2. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/shortcake/report1.htm
  3. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/kent/report1.htm
  4. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/howard/report1.htm
  5. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/combs/report%201.htm
  6. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/kent/report1.htm
  7. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/lau_r/paper1.htm
  8. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/liwai/stuff/firstreport.doc

Gender Unity--Applied Project

  1. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/ruby_skies/ruby_skies%20report%202.htm
  2. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/howard/report2.htm
  3. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/duclos/report.2.htm
  4. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/combs/report%202.htm
  5. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/kent/report2.htm

My Proposal for TV Ratings on Anti-Unity Values (AUV)

  1. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/liwai/report3.htm 
  2. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/shortcake/report3.htm 
  3. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/chrism/report3.htm 
  4. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/ruby_skies/report3.htm 
  5. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/duclos/report3.htm 
  6. www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/409bs2004/howard/report3.htm 

Readings From Earlier Generations:
Student Reports on Gender and Driving

  1. Gender Differences in Driving Norms. Are Men More Aggressive Drivers Than Women? by Sheri Lieberman
  2. Gender Differences in Driving: Society's Effect on Our Driving by Karla Hampp
  3. Gender Differences in Driving: You're Driving me Nuts! by Ike Matsunaga
  4. Gender differences in Driving:subjective or concrete? by Jason Thompson
  5. In Kyung Yang's Report with Review Articles
  6. Lucey's Report on Gender differences Among Drivers
  7. Finta's Review of Gender Differences in Aggressive Driving
  8. Naranjo's Report on Women Drivers
  9. Hatori's Report on Gender Differences
  10. Report on Men and Women Drivers
  11. C. Kawamura--Is There a Gender Difference in Driving?
  12. J. Nakasone--Gender differences: Make your own observations
  13. W. Tagomori--Does Sex Matter in Driving?
  14. I. Yang--Gender Differences in Driving: Not Easy to Prove

 

Opinions and Ideas from Sources Other than Swedenborgian

 

Selected supplementary literature on marriage will be found in this file:

www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy22/409b-g22-literature.htm


Back to G24 Class Home:   www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy24/classhome-g24.htm 
Back to Leon James Home:  www.soc.hawaii.edu/leonj/leonj/leonpsy/leon.html