Monday, July 12, 2010

Is monogamy imposed on homosapiens?

Cheating? Old news
Cheating on the partner is usually the part that people focus more on. Even I focus on that part more; I always ask people what they think about cheating, would they cheat? do they understand why people cheat? do they forgive? do they forget? do they condemn? do they feel guilt?

But Jesus doesn't leave loopholes
But, it recently dawned on me, one of the 10 commandments, and no I am not talking about "Do not commit adultery", I am talking about this one:
"Do not covet your neighbor's wife"

This side of adultery is sort of forgotten, or people are oblivious about or simply ignore. You see, it takes two to tango. I know many people who say that for the reason they're single, they're not doing anything wrong, and entitled to do whatever they like. This would imply that it's the other one's problem, he/she is the one who's cheating...

Okay so let's talk math
Single person = X
Person they're cheating with = Y
Person being cheated on = Z

The excuses we hear from X's side:
- Y doesn't really love Z
- Z doesn't love Y anymore, Y is feeling lonely
- Z will never find out, we (X and Y) are having fun
- Y is bored of Z, Y wants something new
- Things got routinesh for Y and Z
- Z cheating on my Y
... hmmm, anything else?

Different POV - Point of view
This time, I want to look at it differently. I personally am not that much of a christian believer, but many things that are said in the bible, are quotes and ideas I really ponder about and respect.

Therefore this time, I noticed that Jesus (okay this makes me sound too arrogant :P)... anyway *shaking off the unintended arrogance*, Jesus tried not to leave any loophole, the thing is he said: Not only you shouldn't cheat but also don't tempt or envy someone for what they have and try to take it away.

Who's fault is it anyway?
Consequently the responsibility for this "wrong doing" is shared. Some people don't believe that the whole adultery is a wrong doing in the first place. Either ways, let's focus on the 2nd point here.

She thought it's okay to cheat
I knew a girl, who shared her experience with us, and how exciting it is. She slept with a married man, this man was only married to his wife for a year or so. She believed that it was okay.

But he doesn't
Another friend of mine, a real dear friend, said something to me which I really believe in, he said: "You can do whatever you want, as long as you're not hurting anyone else".

Your opinion?
So... what should X do? Should X feel guilty? bad? not give a damn? not feel responsible? not be concerned?

*Painting by Salvador Dali


  1. "You can do whatever you want, as long as you're not hurting anyone else"

    That is true.

    If you wanna look at cheating as a very general equation holding X, Y and Z then it is ugly, hurtful and just destructive . but if u look at it from X and Y POV it happened, for whatever reason it happened :

    *liked each other
    *the sexual tension cannot be ignored
    *it happened, they loved it, liked it, wanna do it again...

    It was a bit weird reading Jesus in ur post hehe (it is just me, im sure) ... but however, Cheating is only a no-noo when u start lying, become a hypocrit, want everything and try to have it ...

    my scenario would be :

    X - cheats with Y
    X and Y likes it alot
    There is a potential
    X - Y wont do anything, shouldnt do anything, unless Y clears things with Z ... it can look complex , but it actually not.

    and btw, Y will never clear thing with Z unless he really wants X.

    cheat along :P

  2. I knew this one was coming. Humans are the only creatures on this planet that are socialized into believing that we must only mate with one person...yes yes, I understand that Penguins may do it as well, but I'm pretty sure that they aren't socialized into behaving the way they do.

    Who invented the idea that humans must only mate with one person? Who ever did, had socialization and development initiatives in maybe, in their opinion, in order to have a full functioning society, and not just billions of people running around humping each other, that it made sense to institute something called "marriage.."

    As I'm writing this I'm having conflicting thoughts about how I feel about the subject. On one hand, I believe in the concept of marriage, but at the same time, I don't know how realistic it is to believe that people can be expected to be intimate with one person.

    I was discussing this with friends the other night, and the concept of an "open relationship" came up...From what I've heard, people who label their relationship as "open" are less likely to cheat, as the taboo and the excitement have been taken out of the act..Does that make any sense? But what does that leave for marriage? I don't know..

  3. First of all, great post!
    So here's my 2 cents on this:
    Y & Z's relationship might be actually a great one (mentally and spiritually) but could be challenged on the physical level (especially with the Lebanese mentality and the all so powerful and untouchable hymen). This, added to the sexual tension between X & Y, might have pushed things overboard and the dirty deed done.
    IMHO, Y has serious soul searching to do. If he/she believe that this was just a one-time thing and mere sexual release, then he/she should just forget about it and continue the relationship with Z.
    If Y starts to want seconds, that means he/she should reconsider the relationship with Z.
    But please note, I'm not saying that X should going around doing everyone and hiding behind the "sexual release" alibi... That would be plain stupid. In that case, X is better of being single and not playing with Z's heart

  4. I think relationships are getting more complicated in the age of the internet and mobile phones and technology in general.
    I do not believe that the institution of marriage, a social and religious contract between two people, was ever successful and it is all the less so now. Except that in the "old days," women in general stuck with it for various financial and sociological reasons.
    Now people are exposed to so much and tend to intermingle, travel, work, communicate so much more than before, that you are bound to be interested in another person, be it a man or a woman.
    Social values have also changed a lot and you have the "hunter" instinct in both men and women, where a couple of generations ago, it was more often the man hunting.
    Having said that, monogamy does exist, if and when you find your soul mate. That is the formula for happiness and believe me, once you do, you never look anywhere else! :-)

  5. Great post, I like it.

    in the case of X,Y and Z; X is afraid of commitment:-)

    As for cheating in general, I think it is a complex issue indeed and we can debate that for hours. Simply put though my partner is free to cheat if she feels like it, ie I do not own her, but she cannot expect me to forgive neither can she continue a relationship with me, If i found out.

    Oh, and as for your friend saying, I think it stands true, but add to it .. as long as you're not hurting anyone else, NOR YOURSELF!

  6. Cheating isn't just the physical act of bumping ugly.. the mere act of imagining urself with someone else is cheating, and both are better off (pshycologically).. nevertheless in a society driven by economics, and social taboos, you don't always get what you want.

    If that is the case, then it really comes down to the personal preferences of each.

    In the scenario you presented.. It seems that there is something forcing Y to stick to Z while in fact she longs to be with X..

    If true, then there must be something Z has or is, that X isn't. So Y has to consider the tradeoff and whether it is feasible to ditch Z.

    This is no green flag for Y to cheat on Z. And i seriously doubt that X is a subject worth thinking of, as any self respectable person wouldn't cheat with a committed individual and would weight it on himself, IF he is seeking a steady relationship.

  7. A very nice subject that i personally think it is dependent on many matters, however one of the most important factors is: Selfishness!
    I believe it is the degree of selfishness that defines a healthy relationship status (what i mean by healthy is the one based on the normal criteria to exist, physical , spiritual and mental)
    The more selfish you are the more you tend to cheat on your partner, the less selfish you are the less you will think about it...
    As for the exceptions that are many and that i can not discuss, I believe that the concerned aware person explains it best and i am not going to assume things on anyone's behalf, i tried so many times, but i never found the right answer for it.
    And to answer your basic question, monogamy is one of the gifts that we homosapiens have, and that we have wasted because we are no more content with Life and its treasures by itself, we want more.... and i actually don't know when we will stop wanting more and if we ever will...

  8. A threesome is a mutual consentual cheating with a the same individual.

  9. A threesome is a mutual consentual cheating with the same individual.

  10. adopting your Mathematical approach , i will elaborate :

    the presence of an X, Y, and Z
    creates instantly the following possibilities
    X+Z *grin*

    if z > 0
    then X+Y =/= ∞ (cz if Z has a value for Y, X will be variable and might = 0 one day )

    so in case of Z > 0
    X+Y can only = +result if both accept that the result is a temporary "variable" , fun, and desire (not emotional )oriented and that =/= ∞

    However if Z ≥ 0
    and X+Y force an = ∞ result
    => X+Y = -result
    (since not accepting that it's a "temporary , fun, desire" equation while a 3rd party exists (≥ 0) , will lead only to a negative result for all parties )

    in case of Z ≤ 0
    X+Y has the probability to = ∞ , = + result , = - result (depending on the variable X and Y seperately)

    in some cases
    an X+Y equation could change the value of Z from Z ≤ 0 to Z ≥ 0

    in no circumstance x, Y, and Z should figure in the same equation
    x+y+z = error

  11. Dani asked who came up with idea of a monogamous relationship. and that is something ive wanted to talk about with someone or discuss (i don't really blog) for a while now.
    If we go back in time, mating was done for one purpose. before there was this concept of love and marriage and the INSTITUTION of marriage. (i think that's a dangerous word that people use but anyway...) That purpose was to breed. Make babies. Continue the blood line and the human race.
    Now comes the interesting part...Man Y impregnates woman A, woman A is out of commission for 9 months. Woman B is available during these 9 months, man impregnates woman B. Keep in mind that statistically there's always been more females than males in the world. So this means there usually is an available woman to impregnate (btw, excuse the language if it offends anyone, im trying to keep it simple). That is why it is the most efficient way to breed and expand the human race. The goal is to get every woman pregnant as long as she is able to carry a child. and since there are more woman than men, polygamy was born (pun intended). which takes us back to Man Y doing IT with woman A and woman B.
    now if this wasn't clear, you see why i don't blog... but try to keep up :P
    Enter the new world, the new age, the modern age of civil societies and liberties and equalities. this is where things get interesting. Woman was equality. Man can have multiple wives but Woman can not have multiple husbands. Woman wants to have multiple husbands. Man too selfish and a jerk, says Women not allowed to have same rights as Man. Man abolishes polygamy and institutes monogamy (knowing that the stigma of Man "cheating" will not be significant enough to stop him from doing it). Now that's just my theory of how it happened.
    "Thou shall not covet your neighbor's wife" does not say anything about a man having multiple wives or woman having multiple husbands.
    "Thou shall not commit adultery" doesn't either. because in the context of a marriage including more than just one person, there is not adultery being committed. Adultery in our current view of it assumes a 1 Man and 1 Woman marriage (which is not under review to include a man and another man or a woman and another woman union with the emergence of gay rights).
    But that definition of marriage was defined before Jesus came along within those civilizations.
    anyway, khabbasit ktir but i'll summarize. The definition of marriage is a man made concept that, in my opinion, goes against the human race's instinct or nature. and why is that significant to the original post? other than to attempt to answer Dani's question?
    since it's against our nature to be monogamous, we have to fight that temptation all the time. I personally see that as a good thing for people who believe in marriage and being faithful to one person. it shows a strong personality and will and love for the other person.
    now having said that, i just gave people who claim they are sex addicts and excuse, even though i think that's just a cop out for men like Tiger Woods!
    the concept of a person loving only one other person is BULL SHIT! we can and do love many people at the same time. and if we can't be with just one person, or don't even want to, we should be honest with ourselves and our partners. cheating is not the act of sleeping with someone else other than your partner. cheating is the act being sneaky and deceiving and lying. and those characteristics are wrong no matter what you're doing. whether be it love and sex or just a plain ol' game of cards. leave those out of the equation and you'll be better off for it.

  12. Let's approach this mathematically if you please:

    we have X/Y or Y/X depending on their mood for variety or it could also be X~Y or Y~X depending on their mood for reciprocity :-P

    on a straight time axis, X & Y are :) while Z is :( unless Z knows that Y/X & doesn't give a shit coz he's already Z/W or W/Z ... well refer to equation above.

    But out of nowhere pops Q who originally used to Q/X or X/Q and seeing this whole bonanza has only one thing to say: "Ayreh Fikoun Kilkoun" and realizes that he is just adding to the whole mess ... Geez I hate Math !!! :)

  13. Nice post, but this is one hell of a controversial subject.

    I believe monogamy was the only option available to build healthy human societies after the cavemen age. In case of polygamy a man won't be able to know who is his kid and thus in general won't feel responsibility to provide, support and bring up the kid, it generally requires the feeling that it is their own to feel responsible. So in a harsh environment kids not having a father are unlikely to survive, and those who survive are the ones with a caring father and mother who agreed on an exclusive relation and they will be brought up to respect such a concept and the idea will pass along from generation to generation.
    However, instinctively a man is configured to spread his seed and that too helped in the success of the human race in the early ages as BC has highlighted in his comment, bec there r more women than men and bec reproduction can be a fatal experience for women.

    Now Abt Mr or Miss X well I tend to believe that person is responsible too, but some ppl argued with me that if the married person is ready to betray(the arabic description is more valid in my opnion, cheating is for card games, here there's a betrayal) Anyway if Y is ready to have a relation with X, he/she will be ready to have it with someone else like X so why should X waste the opportunity of having a nice relation when it won't change anything in Y, which is a valid argument so I don't know.

    What I know is that people who are satisfied with their partners and see them as the right choice they made will never look outside bec they don't need it, but the tough question to ask is how can a person find someone like this, it's becoming so tough to find someone who is that special, and ppl marry for various causes except the most important one which leads to problems on various levels.

    Sorry for the long comment.

  14. wow awesome comments, seriously. So many different POVs :)

    Maria, I wouldn't say selfishness, as much as greed. Say goes for someone who never stops eating and wanting to try 50 million things, while they're not hungry, now that's bad.

    BC and Rany, I see, so it started out with breeding, and now the society needs to be controlled. Yet the instinct remains. (and we already have a huge population).

    Rany I have to say, concerning Y already going to betray Z, so why not with X, I think this is the same excuse that the "lord of war" - the movie? Which nicholas cage gave, he said, if I don't provide those weapons (which allow others to kill) someone else will, so why not me... But is this the real reason why X or Nicholas cage took over? It's not about the fact that someone else will so why not me.

    Now I definitely don't want to simplify the matter, I understand there might be serious reasons why Y and Z aren't in love or Z is in a coma (like some movie i've seen)... but where do you draw the line, where does it become okay.. if Z thinks Y loves her, or if Z loves Y, and Y is in love with X, repeatedly with X.. thinking about X... now that is just mean for Z.. I wouldn't want to be Z... unless am in a coma :P

    Ana min Beirut, mish lebe2lak el math lol bass 7abbet kif stakhdamet el ~ wil / :P

    Archangelus, even with my mathematical background, i did not get ur post lol

    One of the Anynomousses said "as long as you're not hurting anyone, including YOURSELF"... very very very true :) thanks for pointing that out.

    Thanks everyone for the comments, I learn from you. Especially that this subject has a big ? on it... I feel like people categorize everything with betrayal, or simply with this is our instinct.. maybe it's up for us to find the balance somewhere.
    Thanks everyone for your comments

  15. I just skimmed this post and NONE of the comments. Will get back to it later. But from the looks of it, Lots of guilty consciousness? Just saying ya3ni :)

  16. Ooops. meant Guilty Conscience. My bad :)

  17. lol AAL.. tab what do you mean exactly by if Z > 0.. and i will continue from there

  18. okaaaay i focused and got what you mean.. however, you didn't mention anything about the guilt or not guilt or the sharing responsibility.. you sort of allowed it to happen in certain cases, the temporary ones.. how can Z have a value for Y, but Y still goes and temp stuff up with X? what about X's feelings?

  19. when u study the case from a mathematical POV, guilt doesn't fit as a variable but a fixed factor .
    ex: X+Y = (X+Y)*1 , "1" being the guilt, existing but not affecting the equation .

    as for Z's value,(and i'm considering the hypothesis that there's an X+Y equation to start) it detirmines the outcome of X+Y = ? .
    Z's value decides if X+Y=0 or X+Y=+∞ or whatever in between .

    And as i mentioned in my 1st comment , to get a +result, both X and Y should both address the issue from an angle where the combination of logic, desire, fun , tension release and temporary factor constitute 51% of the equation "at least" .
    feelings of x and Y , even though might exist in different proportion should not be the dominating factor < 49%, so it can be dealt with if -result is in horizon

    if not all Hell will break loose w ma bi3oud ma3rouf X min bi Y min :)

  20. X + Y = Z => X - Z = - Y => -Z = -X -Y =>

    -Z = -(X + Y) => -1*Z = -1*(X + Y)

    => -1*Z / -1*(X + Y) = 1 => Z/X + Y = 1

    just my 2 cents...

  21. Liliane,

    I won't go far before Jesus' time. In Hebrew times, polygyny was popular and a simple example is Abraham.

    Until today, there are certain small societies in Africa and India where women practice polyandry. However, polyandry remains dominant. In many West African countries for example, Christian men continue to be able to wed more than one wife according to their tradition.

    My opinion on monogamy is very conflicted. I am not sure I have it figured out and I probably am one of the fewer women who would dare admit this out loud.

    I am not sure I buy the idea that two people can live forever for 20 or 30 years without wanting to experience other avenues and without having to stop themselves from doing so. Actually, let's stick to 5 years, which is in itself a long period of time to be with someone!

    Of course, I do not advocate cheating. If two people have an understanding to be loyal to one another, then I think if one partner needed to explore other choices, it should be made known to the other partner. Both partners need to honor their contracts or deals with one another. Something like an open relationship. A break when needed. Something to jazz up the relationship. Mind you, I have no idea what I am talking about because I have never been in an open relationship. However, I have wanted to have an open relationship many times.

    On the other hand, I do admire certain aspects of our current society, of which family is the main infrastructure. And I do see myself conforming to this main current...

    I'll let you know when I have a definitive answer - if I do. I may never for my whole life and I may continue to be conflicted about monogamy.