"Begin at the beginning,and go on till you come to the end: then stop." (Lewis Carroll, 1832-1896)

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked."Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat."I don't know," Alice answered."Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."

"So long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation. "Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone. "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!"

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I am diagonally parked in a parallel universe. Like Arthur Dent from "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", if you do not have a Babel Fish in your ear this blog will be completely unintelligible to you and will read something like this: "boggle, google, snoggle, slurp, slurp, dingleberry to the power of 10". Fortunately, those who have had the Babel Fish inserted in their ear, will understood this blog perfectly. If you are familiar with this technology, you will know that the Babel Fish lives on brainwave radiation. It excretes energy in the form of exactly the correct brainwaves needed by its host to understand what was just said; or in this case, what was read. The Babel Fish, thanks to scientific research, reverses the problem defined by its namesake in the Tower of Babel, where a deity was supposedly inspired to confuse the human race by making them unable to understand each other.


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Thursday, November 02, 2006

The Gods Must Be Crazy And The Gods Must Be Male

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Female Fertility Goddess

If you are male and of a sensitive disposition, look away now. Guess what happened in 1843? A guy named Martin Berry discovered that human conception occurs when the sperm enters the ovum. What?? I hear you say. Yeah, amazing isn't it. Before this time people weren't too sure how babies developed in women. They used to believe that the male contributed ALL the necessary ingredients to create life. Until 1843 this was considered true until Berry showed that both the male and female each contribute half the material needed to create life.

The ovum (female egg) had been discovered a few years earlier in 1827 by Prussian-Estonian embryologist Dr. Karl Ernst von Baer. So, prior to this there was a lack of knowledge that the female contributed anything to the creation of life except a space to "grow a baby." Male sperm had been discovered in 1677 by a student of Antonij van Leeuwenhoek, but people have always been aware that the male could deposit fluid during ejaculation. They just hadn't seen the wriggly sperm yet. We have only known for a very short period of human history that human conception requires a female egg and male sperm, which goes a long way to explaining why many men in present history couldn't find a clitoris without a detailed map and directions. It goes a long way towards explaining many other aspects of our cultures as well.

I find the historical context of this biological information extremely interesting. I suggest that this lack of knowledge for thousands of years directly influenced many of our modern social/cultural and religious beliefs. In the dim, dark past of ancient civilizations, women were revered as goddesses. The goddesses were symbolically fertile, representing growth, spring and new life. Some of the ancient neolithic sculptures of "fertility goddesses" traditionally depict a robust, female form with a swollen belly of life. It is of little wonder that birth and renewal of life was seen to be miraculous, mysterious, incomprehensible AND female. The female form was worshipped as the creator of new life. People would pray to their female fertility goddesses to grant them a good harvest, a strong and plentiful herd of animals, and the conditions environmentally which would allow for these abundances. Thousands of different goddess cults were created over the centuries in her honour.

And then, within a relatively short period of time, the goddesses began to be replaced with the worship of male gods. In certain cultures male and female gods were worshipped at the same time in history, but goddesses eventually fell from favour and the onslaught of the male gods began. What caused this noticeable change from goddess worship to god worship? People have always created gods/goddesses to explain what was, to them, the inexplicable and to seek counselling and favour; but why such a noticeable shift from the female to the male? Sometime, in the dim, dark past, (yes, that sort of past again), I think that people began to put two and two together. They began to recognize that women, the revered creators of life, did NOT create life unless they had BEEN WITH A MAN.

It was obvious to most, I guess, that men during sexual climax, ejaculated a fluid. This fluid if deposited inside the female resulted in the creation of a new life. The penny dropped, though not completely accurately. Over a period of time, men began to see THEMSELVES as the creators of life. In fact, as they had evidence of their contribution, (ejaculation), it was not difficult for them to claim that THEY contributed ALL that was necessary for the creation of life.

What does this mean? What it means is that men were able to claim the superior position economically, politically and religiously based upon the evidence of ejaculation and the belief that this ejaculate was solely responsible for the creation of new life. Woman was viewed as "the vessel" or the "soil" in which men deposited "his seed". Her contribution was seen as the carrier of the life which the male created. Women were considered "barren" like lifeless soil if they did not "bear fruit" (conceive); because afterall, there was evidence of male ejaculation. He was doing his part, so it must be that HER body was incapable of producing life, just as barren ground was considered incapable of producing plants.

This helps to explain why during the time that the hebrews were busy writing the "old testament" that the role of women was never going to be considered as important as that of men. Why women for thousands of years were NEVER going to be seen to be as important as men. Why women rarely would be in positions of power, unless that power was primarily at the behest of a close male who already had assumed power.

It also helps to explain the concept of the "miraculous virgin birth". Even though societies saw that the male deposited life into the woman, they remembered back to when they BELIEVED that women could create life without male contribution. This of course, was seen as something quite special but the "virgin mother" could not be given the credit as she was in past times. This would upset the already defined patriarchal hierarchy. Life, if it had NOT been implanted by mortal man, must have been implanted by a supernatural male. That is, one who was capable of creating life without the necessity of existing as a mortal male.

It helps to explain why the jewish covenant with god was a foreskin. Afterall, god must be male as males create life, so what is more appropriate than a bit of penis skin to symbolize this creative life-giving power. (All males who have been ritually circumcised as part of a cultural belief system, may cross their legs at this time.)

It helps to explain why cults developed around penis worship; just as cults had developed previously around the swollen stomach of the pregnant female. It explains why, throughout history, systems of government and religion have been predominately the domain of men.

It helps to explain why ancestry has primarily been traced through the male line. Those kids are all HIS seed. She was ONLY the vessel. It helps to explain why most religions up to the present day are male dominated political organizations. In reality, it may only have been about an incorrect premise. The incorrect premise was "penis power". "Penis power" was based on the mistaken belief that the male was SOLELY responsible for the creation of life. The claim that males contained all the ingredients of life in their penis, and therefore THEY were the creators of life, might just be the basis of male dominated culture.

Afterall, the gods MUST be male if males are considered the creators of life. It took until 1843 for a scientist to show that "penis power" and possibly all the human cultural dynamics based upon it, was just an unsupportable claim, lacking in evidence and veracity. But by then, men, who have notoriously short memories anyway, had forgotten how and why they had created their crazy, male gods in the first place. And unfortunately, so had most women.


"All personal, psychological, social, and institutionalized domination on this earth can be traced back to its source: the phallic identities of men." - Andrea Dworkin

Please enjoy this version of "Spiirit In The Sky" brought to you by the goddess Kali :)

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Anonymous ted said...

Not only was that an excellent article Beep, that clip was a scream...:)

2/11/06 9:11 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted:

Glad you enjoyed it. ;)

2/11/06 9:47 pm  
Blogger Bacon Eating Atheist Jew said...

That is interesting. But the Jews use the woman as the main way to trace back lineage. The explanation I heard for that was that you always knew who the mother was.....well except for Jack Nicholson until much later in life when he found out that the person he thought was his sister was really his mom.

3/11/06 12:41 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...


Yes, not all cultures trace their geneology through the male line. Christians and muslims who make up the majority of the world's population, certainly do.

3/11/06 1:14 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting. Although I have heard of a different theory explaining it. It was about the arrival of domesticated cows and its negative impact on the status of women.

3/11/06 1:14 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

have you ever read the book of adam and eve?
anyway love the alice in wonderland, its my favorite.

3/11/06 6:01 am  
Blogger pissed off patricia said...

And I feel it's my role to bring back at least one goddess, that would be me. However I do not in any way resemble the goddess figure you posted.

That's a very interesting and comprehensive post. You have given me things to think about and even a goddess needs to do that on occasion.

3/11/06 8:08 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: tu

Yes, I am familiar with "the talking snake theory."

3/11/06 10:08 am  
Anonymous remy said...

I guess that coming from an art background I thought that the fertility goddesses were common knowledge.

Nevertheless, an excellent post. (I'm still waitig for the video to load. Damn dial up.

3/11/06 10:10 am  
Blogger Larry Gambone said...

This is off topic but are you, Beepbeep familiar with Caleb and Elsie Hamer, my favorite Ghod-fearin' Babble-readin' born-agin' Crustaceans? If you aren't you are in for a real treat if you go to

3/11/06 10:35 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE remy:

The thing I find interesting is that the concepts of "good gods" deals with the idea of abundance, rebirth and renewal.

This concept seemed to be first evident in the worship of goddesses. I think it was originally alligned with the female because of the evidence of birth - renewal of life and the female being associated with the act of creating new life.

I suggest that the "female model" of creation was satifactory (for that time period), UNTIL it was observed that women could NOT create life unless a male deposited "seed."

I think this was the turning point. I think that it was then assumed, incorrectly, that the male was the creator of life and this then led to the god being thought of as primarily male.

To this day, the primary religions on this planet associate the concept of "the creator" with "maleness."

Most people think of god as a "he" and of course jesus is referred to as a "he."

In fact, most get quite upset if you refer to god as being a she or an it.

I think that instead of the more naturalistic concept of female creation, that this was replaced with a supernatural concept of male creation.

A supernatural concept of male creation mimicked what men believed about themselves in the natural world.

The "female god model" alligned itself with the natural world and the evidence of birth, renewal, and rebirth as demonstrated in the natural world.

The "male god model" claimed that a rebirth, renewal occurred in a supernatural world.

Therefore the male god model translocated the ideas of rebirth and renewal to a supernatural world where a male god was the creator of all life.

It was probably difficult to justify male rebirth and renewal in the natural realm as the female god model had the natural world covered in that respect.

It wasn't until the 19th century, that science was able to show that procreation (creation of new life), requires material from the male and the female.

But the concept of the "male creator" already had had thousands of years to entrench itself into our political, social, cultural and religious systems.

3/11/06 1:05 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: larry

Thanks, I will check that out. ;)

3/11/06 1:06 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

o andras genna, i gineka tiktei...

in modern greek meaning

the man creates life, the woman carries/delivers.

they still say that.

3/11/06 1:52 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE toomanytribbles

Thanks. Great point!

3/11/06 4:05 pm  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

That is interesting. But the Jews use the woman as the main way to trace back lineage.
Interesting, but as I understand it, Levitic law doesn't transfer kingship except via the man.
well except for Jack Nicholson until much later in life when he found out that the person he thought was his sister was really his mom.
I thought that was Ted Bundy.

3/11/06 4:35 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

talking snake
I don't think thats the point.
I said the book of adam...not genesis.

4/11/06 2:32 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE tu:

You mean this one?
The First Book of Adam and Eve

4/11/06 2:55 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

It looks like it has a talking snake in it too.

4/11/06 3:00 am  
Anonymous remy said...

Darn you- I awoke this morning with the tune "you've got a friend in jebus" fully planted in my head.

4/11/06 5:06 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4/11/06 12:33 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE remy: I usually wake with a Marilyn Manson song blaring away, but then I sometimes consider that a good thing. :)

4/11/06 4:14 pm  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

I read the article and I know this is a late post, but without reading about anthropological theories and data from this prehistoric period of the sudden change to patriarchy and correlatively from female to male deity dominance, I find beebeep's theory implausible since I believe it would have been quite obvious to even primative humans of the necessary role that both male and female in reproduction. An alternative hypothesis I suggest is that patriarchy and hence male deity dominance occured when populations of human communities increased sufficiently that different communities had to compete for resources.This caused certain activities done by males such as war, exploration etc to become more important, causing community power transfer eventually to them, and as we can obviously hypothesise, deities to represent the structure of society, causing male deity dominance. Now I might be completely wrong about this but this is only a hypothesis.I hope beepbeep doesn't disown me for contradicting her hypothesis!
The rest of phenomena that beepbeep explained with her hypothesis can all be explained with mine by realising the increased considered importance, and dominance males now had and hence the dominance and importance of all things male versus female. If Im right it just shows how much a prisoner of tradition human beings really are.

20/11/06 8:46 am  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

Whatever the causes, it shows the profound effect of gender roles on future socities this had, even up to the present.

20/11/06 9:00 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE pola: How dare you disagree with me on my own blog. lol (Joking, disagree all you want, goodness knows, lots of other people do too.)

RE: "I find beebeep's theory implausible since I believe it would have been quite obvious to even primative humans of the necessary role that both male and female in reproduction."

It would have been obvious that women played a part. But how much of a part? As at least an equal contributor, or as "a vessel" or as "the soil for the seed."?

Certainly this article is based on speculation, as I cannot definitively prove that patriarchy originated because of a lack of knowledge about conception, but I can evidence that a lack of knowledge about conception, may have created a false premise upon which the male claimed a superior role.

It was thought that the female did NOT contribute material to the creation of new life. Obviously the female contributed "a home" for the new life, but it was believed that she did not contribute ANY of the material required for the creation of new life.

It was believed that the male, via his semem, contributed all the material that was necessary for the beginning of a life. The female was just the soil into which the male deposited the new life. So, she grew the new life, but it was his semen or seed, which contained all necessary material for the beginning of a new life. It was his semen which had the "magic power" to create new life.

I think that this is why there is so much analogous reference in the bible depicting semen as seed and the female as the soil.

Human and animal conception was depicted as analogous with that of plants.

Plants deposited seed in the soil. Male had seed which they deposited in the female, the soil. They knew that some soil did not produce plants, even though it was seeded, therefore some soil was "barren" or incapable of growing seed.

Therefore some women were barren, incapable of growing seed. This type of thinking based on a lack of knowledge persisted into the 19th century until it was evidenced that the female also contributed material and not just "a home" in order to create new life.

That material was of course, an egg or eggs. The egg could be viable and the semen might not. This caused a furore in modern thought as no longer could the female automatically be viewed as barren if she did not conceive. It could be the fault of the male's semen.

It was not evidenced until 1827, that females produced eggs. It was not evidenced until 1843, that the male and female each contribute half the material needed to create life. (It may have been suspected prior to this, but not evidenced.)

So, could one of the factors which gave rise to patriarchy be based on the belief that the male was the primary creator of new life?

The male role as the producer of "seed" which WAS considered to be the "new life" and only required a home to grow in. This was basically uncontested until the mid 1800's when humankind finally found out that females, produced eggs. And that females contributed not only "the soil" but also half of the material required to create a new life.

basically, women were probably viewed as not possessing "seed" and seed was considered the crucial element to create new life. Lots of soil, no seed.

False premise based on a lack of knowledge? That new life was created with exlusively with seed. Men possessed the seed, women only represented the soil.

20/11/06 1:02 pm  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

You agree that from the start of humanity it would have been obvious that both male and female played necessary roles in creating newborns.In your blogpost you werent hypothesising it wasn't - so I misunderstood since I assumed you were.However, from the start or near the start of humanity, since there was no known contribution from the female, wouldn't it have been obvious to humans that males contributed all the necessary material for life, and that women were necessary for gestationt? Not that necessarily any value judgements on the relative importance of males and females would be placed on this from the start of humanity. If this was obvious to humans from the start then if it caused relative value judgements and role changes about gender then this must have been later. The representation of females with fertility and barrenness seems to be comparing them with the soil. So perhaps this metaphor is at least as early as the origin of the agrarian society.Maybe it's even earlier since the metaphor might have been a rethinking of a conception that existed earlier since we can imagine how significant newborns would be to a hunter gatherer society where food supply was unpredictable, and population was lower, and consequently female fertility was important.However maybe with the beginning of the agrarian society food supply being larger, although labour was important, individual newborns were not as significant as population increased and hence manual labour, perhaps something males being on average physically stronger, excelled at, became more important and consequently so did male gods. Also during this period population growth might have been sufficient to cause resource competition between different human societies ,causing male aggressive conflict and war activities to become more important.This seems to me to explain why men began to see themselves as the creators of life as male roles became more important rather than the implusible hypothesis that at some point in time males realised that they alone were the contributors of life.The idea of contribution as a seed again as explained above might have been emphasised because of the switch to an agrearian society whereas in a hunter gatherer society male activites of hunting and females of gathering,organisation and so on, and hence the analogy with gestation, would surely have been equally important.

24/11/06 12:37 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE pola:

Yes, I have heard about the considerations of the rise of patriarchy according to changes from a hunter/gatherer society to that of an agrarian society.

And the concept that the gods were morelikely to be female in the hunter/gatherer communities.

I don't claim that patriarchy arose ONLY because of a false premise based on males being the creators of life, but it is one that I find compelling.

It makes the concept of the homage to the male god in the form of foreskins make sense too.

I think that somewhere along the line men thought this:

The supernatural creator must be male if males created new life, and in recognition of the invisible alpha male god's "creative powers" (seeding the earth with all life) - mortal man sacrificed part of their "creative power" to him.

Their creation power was obviously their penis, so as a symbolic act to show reverence and deference to the top male, they ritually offered up part of their own penis.

I know it sounds terribly freudian, but I haven't heard any other compelling argument as to why the covenant with god, as per judaism, was a foreskin. Why not a lock of hair? Why not chop off a little finger?

It is the origin of this that intrigues me, and I am convinced it has something to do with assuming that the "creative life force" was present in men and therefore the ultimate creator of everything must be male.

24/11/06 1:47 am  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

As I said I hypothesise the cause of thinking of the penis as the originator may have been at least one of the following: the agrarian society analogy with the seed, male activity of farming intensive labour and resource competition between different agrarian communities eventually.

24/11/06 2:49 pm  

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