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Notes (1/3)

A rigid thinking dinner companion said it was impossible to paint a drawing of an apple all black. Black gouache exists, and so do felt tipped markers. Therefore, it is possible and I did it the very next day. I emailed her a photo of the finished work. Naturally, she was appalled at my bloody mindedness.

My sister’s first question when she saw “Rational” was, “What’s that in the middle?” I knew I was on to something. I had hit upon it in a post last year without realising how pervasive the problem was. If it’s not in the (colour) you expect, it can’t be (an apple).

The symbolism was deliberate: a drawing of an apple is not an apple. A drawing is not an eatable fruit. The painting represents our blind devotion to symbolic reality regardless of the shapes, colours or textures that in fact inform our day to day experiences.

The problem is, I’m surrounded by women who get their panties in a tangle over unimportant things such as these. Like, for real as Britney said, are you kidding me. No wonder there’s panic in this industry called womanhood. I mean, please.

Feminism is another rigid construct. It encourages men and women to use slogans instead of examining their behaviour. Years ago, a feminist writer protested being sexualised in an elevator but earlier had no problems tonguing out a guy she barely knew in their wedding ceremony in front of two hundred bewildered strangers. Their courtship played out on public access message boards and blogs. It’s the same thing. You’re a horny girl and you’re up for grabs. The man was rational. He made a calculated decision. You’re angry he’s seen through your sceptical bullshit.

Take another friend, who devolved into a slow roasted insanity after her husband asked for a separation. A separation is just what she needs to become financially secure and rebuild her life. No. She makes him breakfast every morning thinking this effort will work telepathically to convince him to return home. If I ever get married, I want a husband who is that devoted to me. I want to be his religion. I can do no wrong. Yes, that perfect world exists.

She later told me she realised her problem. It was that she was incapable of getting angry at the mistreatment. She’s put him first and has always gone without. You cannot say to a person like that: “Now it’s your turn. It’s time for you.” She further said she had no goals for herself, as she would need a self for which to create goals. With a husband, her self was largely predefined for her. Society told her, this is the only self that matters. Imagine hitting your mid forties without a working knowledge of “me”?

Think about it. Is it all worth the human sacrifice you are making of yourself right now?

In Western society we don’t even understand love at all. Love is not an expansive concept, if we have it our way. It’s limiting. We speak of love and leave others to conflate with it their various ideas of what we could mean. Or vice versa. We hear it and impose our own meanings.

Perhaps we should take a Hindu perspective. The material universe is too small a container for love. From a purely mathematical perspective, it is irrational. We cannot grasp the edges of it and that’s why it is so powerful and transformative when we receive it.

Are you receiving? Is your phone on the hook? Are your doors all wide open?