Empathy vs Ego

Men are driven by the response of women. This is the white knight phenom. distilled. It is ego through which the approval of women enters the male heart and mind, and it is ego that is stimulated when it happens. We men enjoy our egos so much that if we cannot earn accolades from women though direct competition with other men, we will create a  scenario that is designed to appeal to women and earn their back patting by pandering shamelessly to them. It feels best when men do this directly in the presence of another male who is expressly not pandering to that same woman or women. He then can stand in contrast, as in “I’m not like other guys”.

Let me explain. White knights are driven be ego as much as the most raw alpha male. White knights think they have a sort of game, that self effacement of men by men is seen as courageous, and rewarded as such by women. This is particularly effective on the internet, or in large groups such as church congregations or seminars where there are mixed gender audiences. These men conflate female approval with having insight into how to comport with females. These men are worse than Pavlovian.

But the positive feedback they get is actually making them all the more pathetic. They do not garner anything real. The nature of the compliments they receive from women are like the comments a man makes as he walks past a display of cool new power tools at Lowe’s. He thinks, “Wow that looks neat and useful”. He may even want one. He may go get one! But then what? When the need arises, he pulls it out, uses it, marvels at its utility and the convenience it has added to his functional goal, then he cleans it off and puts it back in the cabinet. The next time he is strolling Home Depot and sees a display of tools, he will be equally moved by the next new shiny thing, maybe he will even tell a friend later that he saw the absolute coolest new gizmo for (fill in chore here). then they can go get one on his recommendation. Thus goes the reputation of the white knight among women. “Hey lets ask Joe, he is a man and he always sets other guys straight”. Joe is taken off the shelf, used, given his positive feedback, and shelved. Joe has less brand loyalty than a Craftsman. Heck, a man’s tools cross his mind more frequently than the male tool white knight crosses the mind of his female users.

That’s what the white knights get from the women they consciously or subconsciously seek to impress. They are a shiny tool, useful when the ebb and flow of rhetoric could be enhanced by a token man’s opinion, shelved and rarely thought of between times, and forgotten in the next crowd of shiny white knights straining to attract attention to their shelf. The white knight tool who gets purchased and taken home had better never ever ever loose battery life in the face of needing his help facing down a man who is trying to hold women accountable. The white knight tool…..owned….is in a very bad place, because he will get zero ego boost from the comments of his owner. Like a man who owns a tool, the white knight tool’s owner expects his to perform, and be content shelved, but he is expected to clean and maintain himself, the tool has it somewhat better.

White knights get little bumps to the ego, like young folks in clubs putting just a tad of the white powder on the tip of a key and BUMP, a tiny jolt and keep dancin’, another apple pomegranate martini please! They will look around their life, seeking those situations into which they can foist themselves and get some bumps, because they get no more at home. So they sit on the PC at work and make self effacing comments on internet forums and get a tiny bit of a bump from women’s positive reactions. Sometimes a woman will even manipulate them into some twisted emotional affair, where she needs a full time tool to give her the go girl confidence while she hoses down her husband in a divorce. Wears off (translation the women gets divorced and finds a proper alpha), and the white knight feels like shit, maybe even experiences some self recrimination. But the white knight  wakes and wades in for more, daily. For unlike seeking a dash of white powder the white knight sees his service to the weaker vessel as good and pure, and is glad to have the opportunity to explain how wonderful his wife treats him at home…failing to note that even the performing walrus gets juicy fish when it completes its routine.

White knights are the on a game spectrum, they just turn the rules upside down, they do everything exactly opposite of the price of PUA’s. When the white knight is shelved, he is not tossed in next to the alpha gamer, alpha gamers are not shelved. In a way, the white knight is more dependent on the little ego boosts of female feedback than any alpha gamer, who generally doesn’t give a rats rear about individual feedback. Another difference is the white knight doesn’t even realize what he is doing, because HE is the one being the most manipulated by his ego.

Useful idiots.

I cannot sell out to game theory with the religiosity of what appears to me most of its adherents. However, when I see the wallowing done by white knights in the church, I am embarrassed for them, like watching someone in public speaking who has no idea they are making an ass of themselves.

I’ve gone from wanting to show the church where its all gone wrong regarding gender, to setting a more modest goal of wanting to show MEN in church whats gone wrong, to beginning to care even less about showing anyone. White knights are ubiquitous. They react to challenge is a way that fits the old woman scorned cliche, substitute white knight for woman.

What a twisted mess, male ego and the unchecked female craving of empathy. One….ego….has set a gender ripe for being tools, the other, the quest for empathy, has created a perfect trick for the manipulation of the entire narrative.

What will give?

12 thoughts on “Empathy vs Ego

  1. “the white knight sees his service to the weaker vessel as good and pure”

    This one grabbed me. I have a problem with the concept or “weaker vessel,” but not because it’s inherently chauvinistic. Christianity puts a moral spin on a natural truth. Women’s essential “weakness” is our biological need for greater security (hypergamy) combined with our emotional volatility (which inhibits our ability to rationally prioritize our needs.) The moral implication is that we should either be condemned for it, or protected from it, *because it is inherently BAD.* The Christian model assumes that we are like young children, incapable of using our nature responsibly without being micromanaged. The result is that Christianity doesn’t hold women accountable – we can’t help it. The white knight believes it’s his duty to protect every woman from herself. In reality, if he would lead her she would choose to follow, but he believes she’s incapable of following. Therefore he ties her to his apron strings to keep her “safe.”

    Ironically, white knights are actually the very worst sort of “male chauvinist pigs,” due to the depth of their blind condescension. No wonder we secretly despise them. We’re drawn to men who lead and give us the OPTION to follow or not, and who allow us to suffer the consequences if we make the wrong choices. Consequences are what motivate us to make the right choices.

  2. You have, I think, misunderstood some things, i say respectfully. Maybe I will try to make another post about weaker vessel and white knights etc in evangelicals.

    Anyway, thanks for the link, we have not 38 followers but 3.8 followers!

  3. Please do post more. I don’t see a contradiction. I know many men who take a great deal of modest pride in their ability to “parent” or coddle women, instead of taking them to task or letting them fail. And not just among active churchgoers. It seems to be a part of the greater, watered down Judeo-Christian tradition. The focus has gone from men being “essential” in women’s lives, to men being occasionally handy. Many men find this occasional handiness deeply gratifying.

  4. Maybe I’m reading you wrong.

    be it in Christian circles a la weaker vessel, or in secular (game or otherwise) circles, there are beliefs among men that women are like children and need that kind of boundary setting. Putting aside whether I agree or disagree because that’s a separate issue, it seemed you were specifically indicting the Christian set for this while giving a pass to game. Yet in many of the exchanges I see you in, the guy you are posting with is essentially calling the same shot, that the women must have the man setting her boundaries lest she harm herself or at least fail to know her best interests. That one man says it as if she is child like, and another says she is nutty and irrational (but an adult, i suppose) is a distinction lacking a difference, and it appears you hold the Christian and his alleged belief set in lower regard than the gamer, when at base there is no difference in motive, only in execution.

    I would actually say that the Christian, as misguided as the white knight evangelical man is, is blissfully ignorant what he is doing and his motive is more admirable than many the raw gamers.

    I guess I should ask for you to clarify.

  5. I think I see what you’re getting at. I give a pass to what I call the “principles of game,” because they acknowledge the realities of human nature, so I think “game” should be encouraged. In that, I do support gamers, even though I think it’s selfish and shallow to use it in a predatory way (like PUAs.) I also think that it’s counterproductive to use it as an artificial way to maintain a weak marriage. At it’s core, game is not artificial. It’s natural masculinity evoking natural femininity. What ‘s artificial is that men must learn it, since feminism has suppressed natural masculinity. I support game as an expression of masculinity, not as an expression of moral or intellectual superiority. I don’t think it should be used to set boundaries, but to lead, which is a part of masculinity.

    I agree that many game advocates are as mistaken about women as white knights. The mistake is the belief that women are inferior, not of-equal-value-but-very-different. Men who use game to “keep women in line” are the dark side of white knights. In blog discussions I don’t nit-pick over the difference between “irrational” and “more emotional therefore less inclined to be rational,” because irrational behavior is the result of both. I think from now on I may use a phrase like “less rational” or “non-rational” to denote a difference. I know many of the men reading my comments think women are incapable of logic, and they think I agree with them.

    The presumption of superiority is a natural result of acknowledging that men and women are different. “Different but equal” is an ideal we can’t live up to, especially when the difference is dominance vs submission, leading vs following. We like and respect dominance and leadership. We all tend to feel that dominance and leadership are “better than” submission and following, even though rationally we have to acknowledge that dominance and leadership are pointless without people who submit and follow.

    “I would actually say that the Christian, as misguided as the white knight evangelical man is, is blissfully ignorant what he is doing and his motive is more admirable than many the raw gamers.”

    Due to the results, I don’t think motive is much of a mitigating factor. “Superior” Christians are trying to save women from their “inferior nature,” en masse, and they get compliance (grudging or otherwise) with the threat of damnation or the promise of salvation. “Superior” PUAs on the other hand, make selfish use of women’s “inferior nature,” one at a time, with freely given consent. I guess I do give them a bit of a pass, because the “consent” factor gives women some accountability. A moral women who resists seduction in spite of the temptation she feels, proves that she is not , after all, “inferior,” not a helpless slave to her feminine nature. (The PUA may assume she’s a lesbian, and still inferior, but I can’t cure that kind of cynicism.)

    Does that make more sense? I freely admit to a bias against blind adherence to religion, but I don’t want to maintain a double standard about it because I honestly believe my bias is based in rational thought.

  6. You asked for this response…..Im biased against blind adherence to religion as well, yet Im a Christian.
    Different topic , another time…..another blog even….

    There may be some churches in Appalachia where the men are looking after the women as if they are children. This is simply not a big occurrence anymore. The “weaker vessel” is used to pedestaliize women, not herd them like children past a drop off without a safety rail. The Christian white knights, I think you’ve taken your views from the critics of “blind religion” isntead of what is the reality in the church.

    There is a logical way to consider this. No one who knows anything about the church can say that it isnt influenced by society and culture at large. We also cannot suggest that society has not moved in the feminist direction, hence the church has as well, which means that most of the men have lapped the cream along side everyone else and put the women on pedestals. Even the white knight who somehow manages to simultaneously talk about submission (which has nothing to do with women being infantile….well, unless that particular one is, and that is a side effect of feminism as well) is actually a white knight who thinks he rules his castle simply because he obeys his wife so well she never gets irritated. She may also never desire him in a passionate way, but doggonit they speak in soft voices to each other

  7. I think we agree. I see pedistalization as the modern PC version of “looking after the women as if they are children.” (You have to be pretty isolated to get away with overtly controlling women.)

    Both stem from the subtle assumption that woman shouldn’t be held accountable because we CAN’T be responsible. The assumption is expressed in equally irrational but outwardly opposite ways – pedestalization or repression.

    I see strong parallels between “white knight” marriages, and parents who twist themselves into pretzels to accommodate the whims of their children. Both think they’re doing it right because they never have big fights. The watering down of church doctrine is done unconsciously to conform to the underlying cultural “prejudice” (like THAT’S never happened before…) The self proclaimed Christians who rarely go to church but are exposed to “Christian” books/talk shows/videos get the same message, even more watered down.

    Society and religion basically ignore all of the responsible women throughout history (and the Bible) and focus on the “sexy” extremes – Mary and Eve, Madonna/Whore. One is a helpless victim of circumstance who virtuously submitted and therefore “overcame,” and the other is a helpless victim of her own willfulness, who rebelled and paid the price. Both responses are presumed to be a matter of natural character, rather than reasoned thought. Mary succeeded because of her strong natural virtue. Eve failed because of her weak natural virtue.

    Women, being LESS LIKELY to be rational and and choosing making responsible choices, are presumed to be INCAPABLE of it. The traditional way of dealing with this was to actively limit the damage women could do. The modern way is to tell them they are awesome and encourage them to live up to it, but if they fail they have an excuse (which boils down to emotional immaturity.) This is very similar to the evolution of child-rearing methods.

    It’s telling that the only men who overcome this phenomenon are extremely logical an thoughtful, and/or strong natural leaders – men with highly masculine traits.

    And this is a perfect example of the feminization of the church:
    “submission (which has nothing to do with women being infantile”

    Technically this is true, and I’ve been in those Biblical Marriage classes where this is “taught” and discussed. I’ve also read the books. The focus is on appealing to our better natures, not on logic. It’s not discussed very deeply though, because modern women believe that submission IS being infantile. The church glosses over submission instead of confronting the conflict and forcing women to think it through. It’s too risky. Time and again we see churches lose membership when when women get called to account. Ironically, it’s Protestant Puritanism that lets this happen. They won’t get “down and dirty” and talk about the depth and breadth of sex roles, they just say “It’s in the Bible, therefore it’s true.” I, for one, never “got it” until I rationally looked at the parallels between Biblical marriage and anthropology.

    Dang! didn’t mean to write a book!

  8. (You have to be pretty isolated to get away with overtly controlling women.)

    You also have to be a VERY rare exception too. Despite what many would have you believe, the number of men who want to control their wife, to keep her barefoot and pregnant, or otherwise completely dependent on him is actually VERY small.

  9. When I originally commented I seem to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on every time a comment is added I get 4 emails with the exact same comment. Is there a means you can remove me from that service? Thanks a lot!

  10. After I originally commented I appear to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on every time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment. Perhaps there is an easy method you are able to remove me from that service? Kudos!

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