Fair Sex Movement

This a project of the Jubilee Centre in Cambridge and has interesting material about the protection of women.



Sternberg's Love TriangleThis is a great find.  Robert Sternberg of Yale University has written on the factors involved in love.

When you get under the skin of a person and below the surface of any relationship, you find shame.

This is what Brene Brown – the story teller, researcher and thought leader –  has been studying for the past decade.

Why study shame, you might ask?  “Well she says, we all want connection and shame just get’s in the way.”  Shame is part of the imperfect human condition. It may express itself in thoughts like, “If they knew ‘that’ about me, they wouldn’t like me, value me, esteem me.” We may think , “I’m not good enough, promoted enough, beautiful or smart enough.” This is what happens in a world where perfection is held up as the standard and we feel we fall short in some way.

Brene explains that we need to have a strong sense of our own worthiness to combat shame and to get to worthiness we need to accept our own vulnerability.  We are imperfect, have made mistakes and mess up relationships but we are still worthy of love and belonging. ‘The Wholehearted’, that is, people who are comfortable with their vulnerability are able to give freely of themselves and enjoy meaningful relationships, they offer their best contribution and creativity to their families and work. This is where we all want to end up, but it takes courage and Brene will certainly inspire you along the journey.

The God of the Bible is the “companionship” God, rather than an “aloneness” god.

Some religions have a god who has been alone for eternity, without relationship with anyone or anything.  Never experiencing companionship or love.  They are the “aloneness” gods.  One struggles to find a reason why an aloneness god would want to create a world and people who experience love – a concept that they have never experienced.

The God of the Bible is love. He is not simply loving, but God is love, because He has been love from the beginning.  He is three persons who have been in perfect relationship, forever.  One doesn’t struggle to find a reason why the companionship God would create a world and a people who experience love.  Such a God, would delight in what He experiences and would be delighted by the idea of creating others who could enjoy what He has enjoyed from the beginning.  Being love would compel Him to invent ways to love – a concept that is the very essence of His being.

Anyway, an interesting exercise is to examine the ways that the persons of God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – relate to one another, because this can shed light on how we ought to relate to one another.

To do this, check out Appendix B of “Everlasting God” by D.B. Knox, entitled ‘The Implications of the Trinity’. It is a great place to start.

A little play on the wording of Genesis 2:20 – there is no cleaving without leaving – simply picks up on the fact that your “Families of Origin” will shape your understanding of marriage – and those differences can create conflict, if they are not sensitively negotiated – and somethings you grew up with need to be left behind.

Crosswalk has an interesting article.  The circumplex model is tool that practitioners use to diagnose potential issues within a couples relationship regarding their family of origin.  The circumplex model produces a circumplex map.

In our seminar, we raise this theological issue that we’d like to explore with you.

Click on this to get a .pdf summary of the issue.

What do you think?  Is it too long a bow to draw? Or do you think that being made in the image of God and being commanded to be Holy just as God is Holy makes these sorts of questions worth exploring?

And even if it is not explicit in Scripture, which style of marriage do you want: Arian, Sabellian or Trinitarian style?

The following is a great little summary by Poonam Sharma PhD:

Although many of us believe that anger is the root cause of unhappy relationships, Gottman notes that it is not conflict itself that is the problem, but how we handle it. Venting anger constructively can actually do wonders to clear the air and get a relationship back in balance. However, conflict does become a problem when it is characterized by the presence of what Gottman calls the “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse:” criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling.

1. Criticism. Criticism involves attacking your partner’s personality or character, rather than focusing on the specific behavior that bothers you. It is healthy to air disagreements, but not to attack your spouse’s personality or character in the process. This is the difference between saying, “I’m upset that you didn’t take out the trash” and saying, “I can’t believe you didn’t take out the trash. You’re just so irresponsible.” In general, women are more likely to pull this horseman into conflict.

2. Contempt. Contempt is one step up from criticism and involves tearing down or being insulting toward your partner. Contempt is an open sign of disrespect. Examples of contempt include: putting down your spouse, rolling your eyes or sneering, or tearing down the other person with so-called “humor.”

3. Defensiveness. Adopting a defensive stance in the middle of conflict may be a natural response, but does not help the relationship. When a person is defensive, he or she often experiences a great deal of tension and has difficulty tuning into what is being said. Denying responsibility, making excuses, or meeting one complaint with another are all examples of defensiveness.

4. Stonewalling. People who stonewall simply refuse to respond. Occasional stonewalling can be healthy, but as a typical way of interacting, stonewalling during conflict can be destructive to the marriage. When you stonewall on a regular basis, you are pulling yourself out of the marriage, rather than working out your problems. Men tend to engage in stonewalling much more often than women do.

All couples will engage in these types of behaviors at some point in their marriage, but when the four horsemen take permanent residence, the relationship has a high likelihood of failing. In fact, Gottman’s research reveals that the chronic presence of these four factors in a relationship can be used to predict, with over 80% accuracy, which couples will eventually divorce. When attempts to repair the damage done by these horsemen are met with repeated rejection, Gottman says there is over a 90% chance the relationship will end in divorce.


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