If we take a moment to reflect on the nature of conflict in this world we find some very similar patterns. Since time immemorial, conflict has started and gained momentum when two forces have found themselves in opposition to each other. Given the nature of this world, which is dualistic, everything is eventually in conflict with everything else. The difference is that everything that is in conflict is also mutually reliant on each other and eventually transforms each other. Conflict or opposition is not a destructive force in this world. Rather the view that the opposing view (regardless of what it is) needs to be purged, purified or subjugated to the “correct” view is destructive and life ending.
The Native American Indians say that, “I am only as strong as my enemy.” This is one way to say that conflict binds you to another and the outcome can be a positive step in growth or mutually destructive. The American culture elevates conflict to a quasi-religion when seen through the eyes of a football fan. The similarities between two teams are staggering at times and only the most avid aficionado can articulate the differences between teams. To the rest of us, we pick a side by some emotional energetic feeling like, “I’m from Denver.” We then experience delight in seeing the traps and restraints one side sets for the other team. We then have a great emotional eruption when the other side breaks free and scores, only for the teams to set up the same restraints to try and break free all over again.
How masculine and feminine beings respond to football and conflict is very different, even though they witness the same event. Football to the masculine is a metaphor for the struggle to break free from life. To the feminine, football is a contrived replica of life’s struggles and is just another dance of movement and energy with no more relevance that any other conflict. To the feminine all action is interesting because it generates life. However, for the feminine in all of us, the more the action is related to emotions and intimacy the more it is attracted to the action.
For anyone with well-developed masculine energy, a football game is exciting and even addicting. The idea that there is a measured set of restraints and rules that give resistance to your actions is a call to action for the masculine. To measure, evaluate, assign priority and judge success and failure gives the masculine a sense of orientation and direction in this vast sea of feminine existence. By nature, the masculine is in search of freedom from restraint and response to any challenge that constrains it. This is because the masculine is not at home in this world. The masculine is always seeking to be released into a singularity of being that is at one with what is beyond the world. As in football, the entire game is to move through the obstacles and for one moment break free of the world.
The difference between the masculine and feminine view of football or any conflict deals with their identification and resonance with this world. Neither is “more right”, “more superior” or “more moral” than the other view. However, it is fair to say that the feminine is inclusionary and the masculine is exclusionary in its view of conflict. Since the feminine is always seeking to be full of life, it’s motivated to add to interaction and evoke a plethora of sensations. The end of action and movement is not the nature of the feminine. Rather the changing tide of mood, color, emotion and rhythm is the adoration her presence responds to. Since the masculine is always seeking to be emptied of sensation, it tries to eliminate distractions and minimalism in the field of play. The singularity of silence and stillness is the home of the masculine mind.
The irony of the masculine mind is that it finds itself in the feminine world of expansion while it tries to reduce it to a singularity. The masculine mistake is to try an apply only linear lines of thought and action to a spherical world. The best the masculine can do is segment, dissect and decide how to mange some portion of this vast ocean of feminine power. The result is the utilization of the elements that comprise the feminine to create something that is utilitarian and functional. This is the genius and gift of the masculine to the world. However, when the masculine thinks that this gift makes it the master of the universe (ego), it move towards disconnecting from the feminine that envelopes its existence. This is true in both males and females. The best example for females is the feminist’s movement. The directive (masculine) aspect of this movement disconnects from the essence of the feminine and encapsulates itself in specific causes that are self-serving for its own power and control.
In males, the best example of the masculine gift losing its perspective is the creation of war and socialization of human nature. There will always be tension and opposition whenever there are two people in a similar space. Fortunately, there is also a great opportunity for cooperation and the cultivation of life. Whenever you add a third person to the mix, there is politics that creates alliances and the potential for escalating conflict. The more people that become involved, the more politics arises as a means of interaction. Politics becomes a masculine tool to regulate interaction and outcome which require judgments, evaluations and constraints. All of the things the masculine is trying to free itself from are imposed on itself. Linear thought leads to the conclusion that the masculine will eventual be in conflict with itself and will war against its own will. One side will claim the rightness and superiority to their party or cause and by force or coercion will exert its will upon the other side. The suffering increases when the more powerful side annihilates the other side, which is really just another aspect of self.
The feminine view of conflict and politics is not concerned with outcome of struggles, rather the connection and energy cultivated during the dance. Just like a mother who does not pick sides when her sons fight and play, she holds both sons to her bosom and tells them she loves them. They are all her children and she only wishes for them to be always in relationship and play with each other. The feminine does not pass judgment on who should die because all beings will die; nor does she decide who should live for all are alive while involved in this field of play. Rather the force of life infuses the consciousness that attends to her presence and wanes from inattention.
In war, conflict or play the call for strength, guidance and grace comes from an extension of a separate self to connect with something beyond our fragile frames. The act of prayer, meditation and silence before any action allows the feeling of separateness to blend into a greater consciousness than ourselves. The tension that build in polarity is not set up by something beyond ourselves, but rather is the collective result of our own dance with the feminine. To ask God specifically for favor and victory feeds our fear of a separate self and mollifies our intuition so our actions can be justified. To ask ourselves to inflict grave harm on another and believe we are still good is the ground that starts the schism of our body/mind. To continue to justify our actions again and again causes a great disconnect and we can then violate the flow of the feminine and act against our inherent nature. We dissect the moment into separate frames of action and disconnect from our heart. However, to ask God to protect us and keep our hearts and mind on his divine grace keeps the schism for forming and keep our being connected to him.
To live in this realm requires us to kill to maintain life; even if it is inhaling dust mite, eating plants or killing animals and human. The capacity to live with such violence moves our egos to mitigate the action to a higher source and sometimes deny our responsibility. On the other hand, we can participate in this dance of life and death and accept our own action consciously and with full awareness. The greatest warriors are beings that can connect with everything in the mist of the bloodiest battle and feel each moment and sensation as an extension of his own heart and being. In this state, the worship of the feminine presence guides his action as if in a dance with the mother herself. It is in this state that the masculine is at one with the feminine and gives the greatest gift of presence and love. To love in the mist of death and to be able to give graduated for living is the place that conflict serves growth. Not unto judgment or condemnation but unto life and peace.
Most all philosophies and religions agree that the source of all things is singular and undifferentiated. They also state the ultimate peace is still, silent, peaceful and without motion. The common biblical reference of peace is that the Lion will lay down with the Lamb. Because of the nature of this world, Lion will eventually eat the Lamb. For only a moment there is peace. Then the tension builds to a point that all things create a field of play to dance, move, breathe, live and yes, die. She is inclusionary in her desire for us to fully participate in life and death. This field of play is the heart of the feminine force. She does not suppress conflict but always invites us to play in the most seductive ways. It is our choice to enter her battlefield in love and move toward connection with all things or draw inward in fear and dissolve the dance that ends in suffering.