Popular Culture  •  October 21, 2016

Actually, Men Are the Mysterious One

I’m going to make a big generalization in order to shed some light on this mystery.

For women, every question is both yes and no. They live in a constant state of ambivalence. Freud asked “What do women want?” and couldn’t answer it.

But the real mystery is actually men. If we are perceiving the reality accurately, ambivalence should permeate everything. For instance, say, you ask yourself, “Do I want this donut?” Most men would probably be eating it before they finish asking the question in their heads. But given many parts and aspects of ourselves, each would have a different answer.

Unity is actually an illusion. Your stomach may already be full and doesn’t want any more to digest, but your head might want it. It might be your nose who really wants it because it smells really good. Your arm might be too tired to bother picking it up. Your prefrontal cortex might be saying, “No, you are too fat, put it down!” Your empathetic function might be telling you to leave it for your kid. And so on…

So, when you are confronted with these questions, your correct response should be ambivalence, a lot of different yeses and no’s. The more connected you are to every part and aspect of yourself, the more ambivalent you would be. This is why most artists possess a lot of ambivalence. You can’t be a good artist if you are simplistic because the reality isn’t.

Men appear to have only one CPU that processes everything in a single thread. Whichever thread they happen to process first, it seems, dictates their behavior at any given moment. By the time, they start processing the next thread, it’s too late, the donut is already in their stomach. This is why boys generally appear dumber than girls when you observe them.

The big mystery lies not with women. They are perceiving the reality accurately. What’s mysterious is how men are so simplistic.

One theory I can formulate is that, when we were hunters and gatherers, making any decision faster was overall more advantageous than making a more considered decision.