>>> Against Your Will September 3, 2007
By staff writer John Marcher
September 3, 2007
“But to tear down a factory or to revolt against a government or to avoid repair of a motorcycle because it is a system is to attack effects rather than causes; and as long as the attack is upon effects only, no change is possible. The true system, the real system, is our present construction of systematic thought itself, rationality itself, and if a factory is torn down but the rationality which produced it is left standing, then that rationality will simply produce another factory. If a revolution destroys a systematic government, but the systematic patterns of thought that produced that government are left intact, then those patterns will repeat themselves in the succeeding government. There's so much talk about the system. And so little understanding.”
-Robert M. Pirsig
At some point millions and millions of years ago, the first relationship between a man and a woman took place. Prior to this event, men and women fornicated based on the impetus of the evolutionary instincts they came into the world instilled with and nothing more. It was a mutual pact of agreed upon services, where the woman would harbor the child, and the man would provide protection, shelter, and food. However, at some point, a highly abstract concept took place—a concept that would in time come to be referred to as “love.”
“To confine the natural instinct of an animal…is to fail before you even try.”
Animals demonstrate the constructs that defined these early relationships with ruthless abandon. Their unions are strictly based upon procreation, and the ancillary necessities required to procreate in the first place (food, shelter, protection). The ability to comprehend the concept of love escapes even the most advanced of primates, mostly because, to become attached to a mate or potential mate based on anything but said mate's ability to procreate successfully is to folly in terms of Darwinism. Thus, love is an anti-evolutionary concept, something that in essence goes against the grain of the very mechanism by which we have come to exist.
To return to our previous example, of the man who first felt the need to be with a woman outside of the confines of the mutual agreement of exchanging services, is to put into context the ineptness by which this aspect of society came to bear itself. No doubt, this “feeling” of love was moved along by the efforts of the woman in question through only the most insidious of techniques. Maybe she was the first woman to get on top, or perhaps we have shed light on the ancient origins of the blowjob (although the French would probably argue otherwise). What we do know however, is that without ESPN, Xbox, or gambling, the list of hedonistic endeavors ran very short at this point in time, and through this loophole of sorts, the first mind-fucking of a man took place.
To demonstrate the circumstances by which a woman first came to sink her psychological claws into a man is not to leave the man himself bereft of blame. There is no doubt that these same circumstances pervaded multitudes of our ancestors, and the reason that one man amongst others was not able to stay strong is the central concern of my opine here today. This inability to live within the confines of life as evolution has honed it, to give in to the hedonistic side of existence instead of focusing on the symbiotic relationship that all living things have with their environment was the first step towards the flawed society in which we live in today.
I contend that furthermore, this subject was led into the circumstances of recognizing and giving in to “love” through his unfitness for survival (follow me here). This individual was weak, and because of this weakness, should have been bred out of existence accordingly. However, he ended up making up for this weakness, in the eyes of his mate at least, by providing the extra services inherent to “loving” someone, and through this was able to procreate in copious amounts. As the fickle mistress that is evolution is bound to the confines of its own constructs with no room for reflection or accommodation, this individual's genetic weakness was passed on to his young, who in turn used their own inherent weakness to procure their own mates to the same effect.
Through this heinous chain of events, human relationships have changed dramatically over the millennia that have transpired since. There is a certain set of very specific expectations that adorn any long-term relationship in today's society. The zenith of these expectations is marriage itself, which implies within its very definition that we should all have one partner, and one partner only for life. “Love” is an expectation of this union, and you would be hard pressed to find someone who believes otherwise.
These expectations however, as previously outlined, go against the very instinct that has allowed us the time and comfort to form them in the first place. To confine the natural instinct of an animal, even one as complex and logical as a human, to the rigorous expectations of a society that has long since outlived its usefulness is to fail before you even try.
Is it really any wonder, with this in mind, that half of marriages fail, or that 80% of high school students graduate without their virginity? When the standards and expectations by which we are supposed to live are precedents set in a time that has passed us by, how can one hope that they even come close to resembling the actual reality of the situation as it stands now?
Pirsig frames one of the all time most important conceptualizations brought about in literature above. The discrepancy between the system and its effects is a divide not often understood in full in any situation, and the one I just outlined is no exception. To think that marriage, or betrothal, or any of these safeguards against the animalistic drive that has adorned humans since their origins is the answer to halting instinct itself, is to misunderstand the system by which it came in to effect.
In short, they are temporary solutions to a very permanent problem, and it is with this in mind that one is able to understand the incredible folly that befell ancient man on that fateful day some millions of years ago. Let's all hope that at the very least the bitch could deep-throat.