A blog for Christian men "going their own way."

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

"Game" - A Summary (But Perhaps Not a Conclusion)

I am hoping against hope that this is going to be the last post devoted to PUA theory that I feel the need to write for some time. I'm certain my critics feel the same way. But all joking aside, I offer this post as a summary of my previous three posts (see here, here, and yes, even here). I have no illusions that what I'm about the say will be the "last word" on this topic, either for myself personally, or for the whole discussion in general. But I'm a busy man, and I don't have a copious amount of time to burn on chasing rabbits. Here are my main points:

1. "Game" advocacy must come to terms with the historical baggage of the Seduction Community.

This includes: (1) The sexual immorality, (2) any behavior that would be deceitful and fraudulent in what it conveys [Are you making a concerted effort to give a false impression of what you really are?]**, (3) encouraging the Alpha Jerk culture and skank behavior in women, (4) engaging in any other unethical and sinful behaviors in the name of masculinity, and (5) making an idol out of sex. One reader ("Thursday") retorted, "None of the bad behaviors you described are even close to being necessary to attract women" but he seems to contradict himself and Ferdinand Bardamu, who has said the following:
Have you considered, Mr. Auster, that the two explanations are not mutually exclusive? Namely, that in the absence of social conditioning, women will blindly follow their genitals straight into the arms of violent dirtbags? Those men are socially dominant by dint of their nature, which is why women are drawn to them and why, when they get slapped both silly and senseless, they almost always go back to them.
Which is it? Do women flock to alcoholic philanderers and other baddies or not? If not, then why are the baddies not alone? If women do flock to baddies, then what makes anyone think that Game Lite will do the job? If being a thug is what it really takes to do the job, then just what is the Christian man's option "in the absence of social conditioning?" Either you admit that Christian men are going to have a hard time finding decent wives in today's social climate or you admit that women can choose to change.

2. "Game" advocacy must disassociate itself from the Seduction Community.

My critics insist on using the language of PUAs (even invoking the acronym itself, which means "pick-up artist", duh!) and yet take exception when they are lumped in with the PUAs. Folks can't have it both ways.

3. "Game" advocates must be more forthcoming with specifics about how "Game" can contribute to interpersonal relationships between men and women in ways that others sources of knowledge cannot.

I have come across two "success stories" thus far, but when one drills down the narratives, they merely talk about about the husband being more assertive with his wife (something a man could just as easily learn from a tome in a family bookstore). The reader "Thursday" remarks that attracting women requires "considerable nuance" above and beyond merely being a confident and responsible man. Never mind that another "Game" advocate assures us that, "Game is not a series of tricks. It teaches men to grow a spine and grow a set."

How strange that our ancestors never heard of the "Mystery Method." I can hear it now, "Oh, but Anakin, they practiced game." Funny that none of the people I know who lived in the 20th century B.F. (before feminism) have ever mentioned anything about the "considerable nuance" of seduction techniques being the key to success to their dating and their marriages. Funny how men of old managed to find good women without the benefit of the modern Relationship Expert Industry (PUA, Christian, feminist, or otherwise). I tell you what changed: the expectations of many women. Instead of calling women out on their unrealistic nonsense, some men apparently want to kiss up and try to please the Exulted High Maintenance Ones. If you have to walk on sexual eggshells to please the modern woman then what does that say about her expectations and the viability of the relationship itself?

4. The claim has been made that "Game" can benefit Christian men hasn't been substantiated.

I threw down the gauntlet. I raised my ethical, moral, spiritual, and theological concerns. The responses on this matter have been disappointing. Anyone who has following this blog knows how I take great pains to answer any critics who say my views are not scriptural. But what do I hear from "Game" advocates? Something along the lines of, "It doesn't matter what you say Anakin. Women won't change. Game works!" Pragmatism and utilitarianism may work for a secular audience, but as a theological argument for Christians, it falls flat. How does "Game" square with what the Bible says about manhood? Can anyone take a stab at that question?

5. "Game" advocacy must show that it something more than "Cosmo for men."

I fear that the Beta Revolution, for example, is reductionist to a fault in its embrace of "Game." The Beta Revolution, like social conservatives, are concerned about normal, hardworking men dropping out of society. The Beta Revolution, however, thinks sex will motivate these men back to the salt mines. The critics of men's rights advocacy often declare, "You guys are just mad because you can't get laid." The Beta Revolution, in effect, says, "Yep, you're right!!" But does the Beta Revolution (or neo-traditionalist conservativism, for that matter) really focus on fixing society or dealing with women's behavior? Not to any great extent that I can see. It's mostly about fixing men. Men are the problem. Either they are not nice enough, or as the PUA seems to think, they are not sexy enough.

So, if a man learns "Game" and becomes desirable enough for women, just how exactly is his lot improved? How does he win, if at the end of the day, society doesn't respect men? How do his male descendants win if nothing changes for them, either? What reward is it to be the stud horse if, at the end of the day, you are still locked up in the same stall of those who own you?

Over at Novaseeker's blog, I wrote:
Let me remind you that I am not one of those evil "socons" that want men to be doormats to their wives. As a Christian man, I have written more against the misandry of social conservatives than anything else. However, the "beta revolution" will die in the nursery if you and others don't deal with the moral, ethical, and religious concerns of your target audience (responsible betas).
I stand by my words. The discussion has been lively and heated, but I am not out to spoil anyone's party. On the other hand, I am trying to offer constructive criticism. "Better the wound of a friend than the kiss of an enemy."

**On the deception issue, someone might counter, "Hey, women wear make-up and push-up bras." Well, for starters, I have some questions about Christian women wearing immodest clothing in public. Secondly, sooner or the later, the make-up is going to come off and I am going to see the woman for who she really is physically. But I don't hear anything about men letting their Alpha facade down. This, by the way, gets me to my next point: Men and women set each other up for disappointment by putting on an act during dating. If the relationship progresses, sooner or later, you are going to see your mate as he or she really is (bad habits, vulnerabilities, etc.). The eventual slam of reality is most painful for those who rode their ship on the crest of romantic illusions (including those generated by male "Game" and female "Rules").

36 comments:

Puma said...

Good article. I agree that we all bury the hatchet on this one as a division within the budding "Men's Awareness" movement isn't in any of our interests.

One final point I want to make is that the PUA's have the benefit of high-traffic. The different PUA sites/blogs are like a giant conduits that draw in the crowds. There the uninitiated, in their quest to learn Game, get exposed to a subset of MGTOW ideas. The biggest one being de-mystifying of the feminine mystique. Many MGTOW's got their first exposure to Male Awareness via the PUA path. Let's face it: SEX SELLS!. Advertisers and business people have known this through the ages. If the Quest to Get Laid bring many more young men into our ranks, then let it be I say!

Novaseeker said...

A thoughtful post as usual Anakin.

I will respond in the net few days. I am coming off a vacation, but I will probably be able to respond more fully, probably at my blog, in the coming days.

N

Thursday said...

("Thursday") retorted, "None of the bad behaviors you described are even close to being necessary to attract women" but he seems to contradict himself and Ferdinand Bardamu,

1. Uh, there are ethical ways to display social dominance (or, if you prefer, social status) and unethical ways to display social dominance. That should be pretty obvious. And the unethical ways aren't noticeably more effective on average in attracting women than the ethical ways.

2. Most women are not attracted to bad behavior per se, but socially dominant people can get away with a lot more bad behavior than others.

3. Acting like a jerk or a thug is often a turn off for women. It shows that you can't handle yourself in a social situation without resorting to anything but the crudest tactics. Only crude women get turned on by crude displays of dominance. For example, Roissy, in his ongoing coverage of the Chris Brown/Rihanna story, has stated that violence is the province of "lesser alphas."

Let me spell out most women's preferences in order:

1. GentleMAN
2. Jerk
3. Timid guy

Being a jerk isn't necessary for attracting a woman, and can actually start to work against you.

Funny how men of old managed to find good women without the benefit of the modern Relationship Expert Industry (PUA, Christian, feminist, or otherwise).

Women used to need providers. Having food and a roof over her head used to be a major consideration. Now they can make their own money.

Instead of calling women out on their unrealistic nonsense, some men apparently want to kiss up and try to please the Exulted High Maintenance Ones.

Game is the opposite of kissing up to a woman. It is about very subtly establishing your dominance over her. (Again, if you attempt to establish dominance in too crude a manner, it will often backfire. Hence the need for nuance.)

No one is walking on eggshells. Once you've mastered it, it becomes the easiest thing in the world.

But I don't hear anything about men letting their Alpha facade down.

It's not a fascade. The alphaness becomes part of who you are.

Never mind that another "Game" advocate assures us that, "Game is not a series of tricks. It teaches men to grow a spine and grow a set."

He's wrong if he is suggesting that men don't need social awareness to attract women. You need to know when and how to do what.

--------------------------------

Again, I think you are concerned mostly with the variant of game known as asshole game. But that variant doesn't define game. It can be extremely effective on certain kinds of women, but it isn't necessary even on them. Plus, it is not all that effective on the better sort of women.

Niko said...

I guess your right Anakin, you can't enter the slough without getting bogged in the mire.

Justin said...

Thursday's comments remind me of trying to argue about Islam or Hinduism. Anytime you lay down a critique, the reply is "You don't understand, that is only one part of it..."

While Thursday's point might be quite valid, that there are subsets of Game theory that are acceptible, Anakin's overall point remains valid: the Game worldview is negative and destructive.

A poison tree does indeed provide calories and delicious fruit, so a hungry man may proclaim it his meat. But over time, the build up of poison corrupts the man's organs and leads to his painful death. I think "Game" has that effect on a man's spirit.

The principles of positive masculinity that Thursday advocates are not owned by Game. Those principles are not in dispute by us religiously-oriented analysts.

VonRuss said...

The Game has been overexposed in the dating community but it has existed ever since. It was just put into writing, discussed by many, and been used to earn money as well.

Though being aware of it can really help most men improve their selves and take action in dating and not just wait for any opportunity in dating women. PUAs like Mystery, Julian Foxx, etc. has shown their techniques in picking up. They can pickup the girls that they like, not just some girls available for dating... and that's what men would like to do.

Anonymous said...

"The principles of positive masculinity that Thursday advocates are not owned by Game. Those principles are not in dispute by us religiously-oriented analysts."

They're not, but those principles are sorely neglected, if not denied outright by religious leaders who too often take the stance that all you have to do is "chase hard after God" and someone of the opposite sex will be so inspired by your walk that they'll want to marry you (as some of the female posters on another thread here were basically saying). If you ask those leaders how they married their spouse, many of them will smugly declare that it happened after the "gave it all to the Lord", etc., but observers around them will later recall things that reflect human effort. In this way, I think Christian leaders can be quite disingenuous.

A lot of the interest in "game" seems to reflect a desire for believers to deprogram themselves from less than helpful church teachings about singleness and marriage, to learn things that are genuinely helpful. I agree with Anakin that there needs to be a dissassociation away from the seduction community, and a need for "Game" advocates must be more forthcoming with specifics about how "Game" can contribute to interpersonal relationships. There sure seems to be a need for it, as there's lot of disillusionment with what has traditionally been taught in churches about how to mate and marry.

Elusive Wapiti said...

Re: #1. I just came to terms with it. Done. I concede that the seduction community are a bunch of evildoers.

But that doesn't mean that they don't speak a certain truth about women and men that the present churchianity culture needs to hear and internalize.

Re: #2. Agree. "Game", born of the PUA world, now needs to separate itself from it.

Re: #3. Agree here as well. I think this will come with time. I may blog on it myself, although I've avoided talking about game since the topic seems to be so ubiquitious.

Re: #4. "Can anyone take a stab at that question?" Since I am a Christian that believes that some game techniques are useful, I plan to. Not now. Too busy.

Re: #5. In the end, "Cosmo for guys" is what I think it will end up being. A tool to make for better sex, and possbily a buttresser of relationships and marriages. But there is a lot of other dirty spade work that needs to be done wrt relationships; hopefully this mad concentration on game settles soon and we all can get back to the hard work of getting marriages away from being about romance and happiness and back to being about duty and love and commitment.

slwerner said...

Anankin asks - "How does "Game" square with what the Bible says about manhood? Can anyone take a stab at that question?"

You might have missed, but your fellow blogger Justin posted this:

The Origins of Game: Jesus
http://religionnewsblog.blogspot.com/2009/08/origins-of-game-jesus.html

Anakin Niceguy said...

Uh, there are ethical ways to display social dominance (or, if you prefer, social status) and unethical ways to display social dominance. That should be pretty obvious. And the unethical ways aren't noticeably more effective on average in attracting women than the ethical ways.

Acting like a jerk or a thug is often a turn off for women. It shows that you can't handle yourself in a social situation without resorting to anything but the crudest tactics.

If you want to believe this, that's fine, but other PUAs don't seem to agree with you. Josh Xiong and Ferdinand Bardamu (who I have already quoted) being an example. Here's what Josh has to say:

I have finally figured out what separates friends of the pick-up community from some of my fellow conservatives: the former holds no delusions about love, while the latter latches onto pretty lies. They are, for the most part, necessary lies, because they help the social conservative maintain the belief that their family values - chastity, marriage before sex, child-rearing - are ennobling. To acknowledge that romance is a full-contact sport, with all the ugly bruises to the ego and psychological conquests of sex, or a free market of personal advertising, where a person’s attraction can be assigned some kind of commodity value, would be disconcerting to such a dignified fantasy.

Josh takes a cold, calculated approach to human nature. Here's what he says about the jerk:

Your average, cheating, borderline alcoholic sexist is actually very attractive to women, however disconcerting that fact may be. Suderman doesn’t want to believe this, even if it comes out of the mouth of an actual woman, because it would imply that the social conservative beta providers are not what women really want. Women don’t like to admit to it, but how many stories have we heard about the “asshole boyfriend” and the hapless one-night stand victim? If the Draper-types in our society didn’t possess an innate magnetism, how else could they cheat and cheat and cheat in the first place? Draper is an alpha male. Female primal instincts love alpha males. And sexual attraction is nothing if not primal instinct.

There you have it. According to this PUA, jerks are what women want. With all due respect to Thursday, he is engaging in special pleading. He wants us to believe that an approach having "considerable nuance" is now needed to attract women, but at the same time, he wants us to believe that women are still genteel enough to not respond to bad boy behavior. I ask my fellow male readers if genteel women (aka "the better sort" or "marriage material" who don't respond to thugs) have increased in this culture or maintained their numbers. Or have we rather seen a coarsening in female behavior? Because when you have situation where women are no longer accountable for their actions, being a "GentleMAN" won't cut it in the long run. When a woman's morals are loosened, she is not going to pick out a man that constrains her in that regard (moral men are just no fun). Read Daniel Amneus. No amount of "Game" is going to stop the slide into grass huts and ghettos in this case.

Thusday has actually conceded a bit of the debate. In listing his hierarchy, he demonstrated that, for women, social dominance is not negotiable, but character is. That speaks volumes about whether or not women are "marriage material." Let's suppose we flip the roles. What if I told women that the rules have now changed and they must pay a considerable amount of attention to looks or else they will be kicked to the curb. What if I said that I rather date a hottie who is a cokehead or that acts like a shrew rather than a so-so looking woman with a knockout personality? What if I said all men who "marriage material" believe as I do. I daresay most people, men and women alike, would dismiss me and men like me as creeps and losers who are "dreaming." However, we act like similar behavior in women is just acceptable and du jour. Most interesting, indeed.

Anakin Niceguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anakin Niceguy said...

slwerner,

Justin specifically says in that post that it is not about "Game." Now, with all due respect to Justin, I believe he's misinterpreted some things. Direct commandments in the Bible regarding our behavior have a higher priority then what Jesus did. I challenge any Christian who thinks otherwise to go into a business that sells pornography and start turning over magazine bins on the basis of what Jesus did in the Temple complex. Quod nimis probat, nihil probat ("what proves too much proves nothing").

Anonymous said...

"He wants us to believe that an approach having "considerable nuance" is now needed to attract women, but at the same time, he wants us to believe that women are still genteel enough to not respond to bad boy behavior."

It's one thing to be "bad", as in have a wicked sense of humor, and quite something else to be a thug. I'm going to keep pointing to the middle as you and your likeminded malcontents obsess about extremes, Anakin. It's a minority of women who go for a "cheating, borderline alcoholic sexist", but *every* woman likes the boy-next-door who can banter with them.

Unfortunately, this is bad news to the the brooding introverts who think it should all be about consistency of opinion and other highly serious criteria.

Novaseeker said...

The bottom line, Anakin, is that you offer no viable solution to men. You use the Bible as a dating manual. That's fine if you wish to do so, but I don't think it's working well.

To wit: I think you present to men these options: (1) stand on the cliffs of moher, knowing you are right and there is no righteous woman for you, or if there was, she overlooked you or (2) work on themselves and try to meet nice Christian women, but then be attacked for using Game to do so.

You've sewn yourself a nice catch-22, I agree, but it isn't convincing to me, and I say that with respect.

Thursday said...

other PUAs don't seem to agree with you

Lying alcoholics can often get away with being lying alcoholics because they have other attractive qualities. That doesn't necessarily mean their lying and their alcoholism are what makes them attractive. If others are suggesting differently, they are wrong.

However, my caveat again is that "asshole game" can be very effective on certain types of women, though it isn't necessary even with them. Generally not the type of woman you would want for a wife.

Thu[r]sday has actually conceded a bit of the debate. In listing his hierarchy, he demonstrated that, for women, social dominance is not negotiable, but character is. That speaks volumes about whether or not women are "marriage material."

No. If a good woman has to choose between an good but unattractive man, a bad but attractive man and remaining single, she will almost always choose to remain single. In general, a perfectly legitimate choice. You'll find a lot of these women in 30s groups in various churches.

The whole situation is analagous to a good man having a choice between marrying a good but very ugly woman, marrying a bad but pretty woman or remaining celibate. It is perfectly legitimate for him to remain celibate.

So, the main danger isn’t that the truly good girls will choose a bad boy over the good guy, they generally won’t, it’s that they will prefer to remain spinsters and not mate up with anybody at all. Again, I see this all the time in churches: all sorts of decent looking celibate thirtysomething women who prefer no sex and no family to mating up with some lesser beta. For all the talk of the MGTOW movement, church girls have already been informally practicing a version of WGTOW for years.

Because when you have situation where women are no longer accountable for their actions, being a "GentleMAN" won't cut it in the long run.

No, the Gentleman will beat out the jerk with most women, even today.

Anonymous said...

What the last three posters said.

Anakin Niceguy said...

Anonymous says ...

It's one thing to be "bad", as in have a wicked sense of humor, and quite something else to be a thug. I'm going to keep pointing to the middle as you and your likeminded malcontents obsess about extremes, Anakin. It's a minority of women who go for a "cheating, borderline alcoholic sexist", but *every* woman likes the boy-next-door who can banter with them.

This debate isn't about the boy-next-door who can banter, but about following all sorts of complex rules of game to keep the missus' eyes from wandering.

Thursday writes:

No, the Gentleman will beat out the jerk with most women, even today.

Thurday's argument is predicated on the "good woman". It's a salient argument only as much as "good woman" increase or remain constant in number. I say, read Gresham's Law (what goes for currency goes for "Game"). In the absence of social controls, Daniel Amneus' theories ungirding the concept of the Garbage Generation holds true.

Novaseeker writes:

The bottom line, Anakin, is that you offer no viable solution to men. You use the Bible as a dating manual. That's fine if you wish to do so, but I don't think it's working well.

So the validity of my arguments depends on the perceived options they leave men? Isn't that Argumentum ad Consequentiam?

I believe Daniel Amneus' words are apropos:

"The key issue is not, as Gilder imagines, whether men can be induced to accept the Sexual Constitution which he imagines women try to impose, but whether women themselves can be induced to accept it."

Throw out the Sexual Constitution and no amount of "Game" will change the outcomes.

slwerner said...

Anakin - "Justin specifically says in that post that it is not about "Game.""

Then gives examples in which Jesus engages in what can easily be seen as fitting in with some aspects of "Game".

Frankly, I know that "Game", in the broader sense, isn't Scriptural. But, then again, men forgetting how to be manly with women (not necessarily jerks, mind you) even while if meek towards God.

Being a "doormat" for women and putting women on pedestals are also both unScriptural, BTW.

Plenty of Christians seem to be just as adamant about being and doing these as are PUA of "Game".

slwerner said...

"...men forgetting how to be manly with women (not necessarily jerks, mind you) even while if meek towards God" - would be a relatively recent development, of course.

Josh Krebs said...

While I certainly have my disagreements with Anakin, about this issue he has made very good points. Game is ungodly, unbiblical, and teaches both men and women the very opposite of what God intends relationships to be.
I certainly don't think that you "just follow God" and he will drop someone in your lap, but the whole idea of Game theory is to attract women (plural). This is something so wholly against Scripture that it is mind boggling. If you are pursuing one woman at a time, being honest and straightforward, you don't need someone to tell you techniques to attract her.
And in case you want to use the argument that I don't know how to get a woman, I've been married for two years and couldn't have a godlier wife.

Anonymous said...

"This debate isn't about the boy-next-door who can banter, but about following all sorts of complex rules of game to keep the missus' eyes from wandering."

It's not about rules. And that's the problem, Anakin, it's all about rules, laws, consistency with you. How human beings connect is as much, if not more, about art as science. Do the scriptures give you a step by step guide to how to paint a painting? Craft a piece of furniture? Lead a nation? No. They provide some laws and many guidelines and much inspiration.

Even if you descontruct the techniques of "game", you either get the art of it or you don't.

Anonymous said...

"I certainly don't think that you "just follow God" and he will drop someone in your lap, but the whole idea of Game theory is to attract women (plural)...If you are pursuing one woman at a time, being honest and straightforward, you don't need someone to tell you techniques to attract her."

Some ways of being honest and straightforward are more effective than others. The question is how do you teach men *quality* interaction skills so they can relate more effectively to women? Churches aren't dealing with this, they just give crappy advice along the lines of "just be transparent".

And goody for you, if you were able to meet and marry your wife by the age of 23. From your photo, it's plain to see that you're quite a good looking guy, so how would you know how it is for those not so blessed who may have to rely more on their personalities?

As for the plural aspects of pursuit, we need to stop feeding young Christian woman the idea that if a guy asks you out, you're "dating". In our parent's day, young people would date freely and prolifically until there was a mutual commitment to "go steady". What was wrong with that? Why did the "biblical dating" mullahs have to issue all kinds of courtship fatwas and make everything into such a big deal?

Josh Krebs said...

First of all, "quality interaction skills" come from knowing basic manners and basic interpersonal skills. You can learn those almost anywhere by simply observing godly people who you think interact well in social situations. You may notice that they tend to be people who are more focused on interaction than others ends.

Second of all, it is very offensive to both my wife and myself that you would assume that it was my looks which helped me. It may interest you to know that prior to me sharing my testimony my wife (who I beraly knew at that point) thought I was wierd because I had no fashion sense and a big, bushy beard.

Further, I have several close friends who I would say are not exactly models, shall we say, who have found godly wives by being honest and open. Furthermore, a recent study in the Journal of Personality and Individual Differences shows that the primary factor in mate selection for women is, by a huge margin, personality. And this study was done among a general sample of women (meaning non-Christians).

And our parents generation has seen the rise in teen-pregnancy percentage, the lowering of the age when people become sexually active, and an increase in pre-marital sex among believers.

In fact, one study shows that an estimated 3/4 of married women who claim to be Christians are not virgins, and a slightly higher 80% for men. And as far as it being a "big deal", I take the one human relationship which we are told most clearly exhibits the Gospel very seriously(Eph. 5). Furthermore, this game clearly contradicts a basic command from God: "Flee sexual immorality!" (1 Cor. 6:18). Nothing I have read of even so called Christian Game theory comes close to fleeing immorality.

Anonymous said...

"First of all, "quality interaction skills" come from knowing basic manners and basic interpersonal skills."

Well, there's "basic", and then there's "advanced".

"You can learn those almost anywhere by simply observing godly people who you think interact well in social situations."

People have different gifts, difference weaknesses. Not everyone can learn just by observation: that's why you need elders and others who can share wisdom and advice. Unfortunately, a lot of what passes for wisdom and advice about relationships in Christian circles is disingenuous churchy blather.

"it is very offensive to both my wife and myself that you would assume that it was my looks which helped me."

You don't think your looks (presumably apparent under that beard) eventually, to some degree, helped?? This is what I mean by churchy blather, that it was only your testimony that made her feel attracted to you. HA! Typical. That it's only personality that women are interested in. I mean, sure that's a big component, but how do you think personality (which, btw, always overlaps with looks) is expressed? By how people COMMUNICATE.

Sorry to shout, but more than a few of us have had it with being told that communication is simply a matter of being really open and honest with people. It's so much more than that. It's about timing. It's about understanding emotions and body language, learning to provoke (in a good way) response from another. Use of humor. It's assertiveness and handling challenge and conflict. Dealing with sex differences.

People waste years of their lives practicing the wrong things and get wrong results. And that is what "game" tries to remedy.

Most of the guys here who advocate game (with the exception of a few trolls) are against it being used to procure premarital sex or to set women up for humiliation or heartache. They just want to see what can be learned from the Chaldeans. I think that when men develop an interest in improving their communication skills (past the basics) that it should be encouraged, however dubious their sources of information. At least there are ideas on the table to bandy about and evaluate. And in this case, any start is a good start.

Comment_Whatever said...

2. "Game" advocacy must disassociate itself from the Seduction Community.

My critics insist on using the language of PUAs (even invoking the acronym itself, which means "pick-up artist", duh!) and yet take exception when they are lumped in with the PUAs. Folks can't have it both ways.


That's..... quite the exceptional demand to make. Complete ostracism of people you don't like if I'm going to be your friend. Tell me, will you disassociate yourself from people I don't like?

That's what I thought.

Still, nothing is stopping you from making a "Moral Version" of game. Kino, Take-Away, two steps forward-one step back, "stop before she does", reading IOI's and IOD's..... proper order of courtship(Attraction->Comfort->Seduction)
are all things that could be taken whole cloth and are basically completely acceptable from a moral stand-point.

So why don't you?

Comment_Whatever said...

For example, Game says "Stop kissing before she does".

This is actually a display of Self-Control and establishes dominance over/maintains her desire at the same time.

It should be fairly obvious that this is acceptable from a Christian standpoint.

Also, placing the Attraction phase of Courtship before the Comfort phase stops men from being put into the Let's-Just-Be-Friends. This is a big problem, and BY ITSELF will stop many guys from being shot-down over and over again.

Again, there is nothing deceptive about placing Attraction before Comfort.

You could probably take almost HALF of Game techniques out, and without any qualms place it in a moral book.

Also, I'd say your Conservative chant that women want providers could very easily be translated into "Women are Whores, You pay them for Sex."

See how easy it is to play the mud-slinging game? I did that pretty easily.

SavvyD said...

Why not just start by being friends with women? I dated a guy who was helping me with my homework. There are plenty of attractive women who would love for a nice guy to ask them out. I've tried establishing friendships with people and been blown off by both men and women. I've blown people off too. Maybe we are too dismissive because of urbanization--you can always make new friends when there are lots of people around to distract you.

Josh Krebs said...

If you want to communicate with women, try Man are Like Waffles Women are Like Speghetti by Bill and Pam Farrell. No church "blather", no moral ambiguity, plenty of advanced communication help, and no manipulation. The problem with game is it is about a person getting what they want/"need" out of a relationship. Christian relationships are about giving, not taking. If we are to take Christ's example for manhood seriously, we will find that He sacrifices for the good of others--I see this nowhere in any version of game. Period.

MarkyMark said...

Josh,

I agree with your last post. What's appalling is that PROFESSING CHRISTIANS are championing game! They should be ashamed of themselves! I'll shut up before I say something I regret...

MarkyMark

Triton said...

In fact, one study shows that an estimated 3/4 of married women who claim to be Christians are not virgins, and a slightly higher 80% for men.

I would expect that ALL married Christians are not virgins. I mean, being married kind of implies having sex, you know? Otherwise, there's not much point.

Perhaps you were referring to Christians who were or were not virgins prior to marriage?

And I have to agree with the anonymous poster who commented on Josh's looks. Having a good-looking person claim to have attracted a spouse because of his or her personality is like listening to rich people say money isn't everything. It may be true, but I need to hear it from a different source for it to have any credibility.

The problem with game is it is about a person getting what they want/"need" out of a relationship. Christian relationships are about giving, not taking. If we are to take Christ's example for manhood seriously, we will find that He sacrifices for the good of others--I see this nowhere in any version of game.

Incorrect, Josh. Jesus never married, so any examples He may have provided for us fall outside of the realm of that particular institution. The only way to follow Jesus' example with regards to romance would be to stay single. Which, by the way, as a married man, you've failed to do.

And marriage isn't just about giving, either. The Bible makes it very clear that husbands and wives have the right to expect certain things from their spouses. A man, for example, has the right to expect his wife to obey him, and a woman has the right to expect her husband to love her. This is kind of the whole point of having wedding vows in front of witnesses. A relationship where one party sacrifices without getting anything in return isn't marriage, it's slavery. Only an idiot would voluntarily take on a burden like marriage without any hope of benefit.

Now, regarding this Game nonsense, I have a question for Anakin:

It seems to me that your main objections are semantic and associative. After all, there's nothing sinful about trying to attract a woman you want to marry and be faithful to. Suppose the non-immoral aspects of Game were repackaged and labeled "Christian Flirting Techniques", or CFT. Would you object to CFT?

This isn't a trap question or anything; I don't pursue women at all, so I don't really have a dog in this hunt one way or another. I just want to be sure about where you draw the line.

Anakin Niceguy said...

Triton writes:


It seems to me that your main objections are semantic and associative. After all, there's nothing sinful about trying to attract a woman you want to marry and be faithful to. Suppose the non-immoral aspects of Game were repackaged and labeled "Christian Flirting Techniques", or CFT. Would you object to CFT?

This isn't a trap question or anything; I don't pursue women at all, so I don't really have a dog in this hunt one way or another. I just want to be sure about where you draw the line.


Yes, my main objections are largely, thought not entirely, semantic and associative. Semantics is important because of the power of connotation. Consider the phrases "winning the heart of a lady" and "bagging and tagging a chick" respectively. There may be some considerable degree of overlap in the intentions that undergird these two statements. The intentions may indeed be harmless. However, given the common usage of these terms, the meanings they convey are often antithetical.

"Game," in my estimation, has been historically used by a subculture to mean those relationship skills or interpersonal assets considered from the vantage point of seducing women and having casual sex with them. That's why I find the term problematic. Novaseeker and others acknowledge my concerns regarding this matter.

I will say this, I have no problem with relationship skills theory or advice regarding such, if the following concerns are taken into account ...

1) Use responsible language to talk about such things.

2) Stay away from condoning behaviors that are sinful.

3) Avoid presuppositions about human nature that contrary to the Scriptures.

4) Do not confuse mating preferences with masculinity or femininity itself.

Josh Krebs said...

I do apologize for my grammatical omission, I did mean Christians prior to marriage. I would certainly hope married Christians are not virgins (though I have know a young couple once that was a friend of a friend who waited almost 8 months...sickening!).

As for Christ not giving us a clear example about romantic relationships, Ephesians 5 pretty clearly outlines how we follow Christ's example in marriage. And when I say that it is about sacrifice, I mean that it is about mutual sacrifice. But sacrifice is something that always has to start with taking a risk, the risk that if you give then your significant other will give in return. It's really only a danger if you don't trust your significant other, in which case you have more fundamental problems anyway.

Josh Krebs said...

I also think that when you, Triton, said that husbands and wives have the right to expect certain things you are right. They do not have the right, however, to demand them. Demanding respect and demanding love are both useless because they both bring about the very opposite. God commands husbands and wives to love/respect one another, but just because a wife stops respecting her husband doesn't mean he gets to stop loving his wife, and vice versa. In fact, a husband who loves his wife even when she does not respect him, though that is a difficult journey, is acting out the gospel in his marriage.
Now for unmarried men this means realizing that a woman will not always respect you, just like you won't always love her, but your committment together is to say that when one of you falters you will be held up by your spouse until you regain your footing.
That is a biblical romantic relationship.

Anonymous said...

"And I have to agree with the anonymous poster who commented on Josh's looks. Having a good-looking person claim to have attracted a spouse because of his or her personality is like listening to rich people say money isn't everything. It may be true, but I need to hear it from a different source for it to have any credibility."

Just as it's folly to hear a more attractive person say "looks are nothing", it is also folly to hear a less attractive person say "looks are everything, whoa is me". The truth is somewhere in between. Indeed, "superficial" qualities like looks and earning potential carry considerable weight, more personality based variables (which are harded to pin down) also factor into the mix. However, religious leaders shouldn't be hypocritical and judgemental that looks and earnings **are** factors -- just look at how many of them are matched with the most attractive spouses they could get.

People should own up to their strengths and weaknesses. It is disingenuous for a good looking person to deny that their looks had anything to do with attracting their mate. Likewise, it is also disingenuous for a less attractive person to judge the opposite sex for "only caring about looks". Sure, looks and income shouldn't be the only thing that matters, but they do carry considerable weight for good reason.

Mrs. Pilgrim said...

An anonymous commenter writes:

"You don't think your looks (presumably apparent under that beard) eventually, to some degree, helped?? This is what I mean by churchy blather, that it was only your testimony that made her feel attracted to you. HA! Typical. That it's only personality that women are interested in. I mean, sure that's a big component, but how do you think personality (which, btw, always overlaps with looks) is expressed? By how people COMMUNICATE."

Well, speaking as a woman...I'm going to burst your bubble.

When I was looking to be married, my prayer was always, "Lord, I only ask that he have a heart for you. Other things would be nice, but if you only give me in my husband that he is a good man, that will be enough."

When a matchmaking service selected Mr. P. and me for each other, I got to see pictures. Mr. P. does NOT photograph well; I looked at the photos with something rather less than mad lust. But our expectations matched up, our beliefs were compatible, and our intentions were the same, so we decided to meet. (Note: I never agreed to meet someone if I thought it would be a waste of time.)

So when we met, my mind was already settled that, barring something outrageous turning up in courtship, we could probably live together quite amicably and in a way to glorify God. I'd picked him, thinking he wasn't very good-looking, but oh well.

...I learned after making that decision that he IS, in fact, amazingly handsome, clever, understanding, a gentle giant, etc. etc. etc.--but that's irrelevant. Those were bonuses. I was prepared to accept him based on what I knew a successful marriage would require.

I bring this up because you dismiss with a sneer the idea that a woman could POSSIBLY choose a man who doesn't have looks to recommend him. Some of us, sir, have our heads on straight--not as many as should, but then again, neither do as many men as should.

A girlfriend wants a nice-looking accessory for her outfit. A wife wants a good man. Learn the difference.

Anonymous said...

"I bring this up because you dismiss with a sneer the idea that a woman could POSSIBLY choose a man who doesn't have looks to recommend him."

Excuse me, but where does anyone SNEER at the ideal that a woman could choose a man who doesn't have looks?? Women fall in love with less attractive men all the time, especially when they have other qualities, such as intelligence, good character, sense of humor, etc.

What I reject is the boast of someone married to an attractive spouse that their looks had nothing to do with how attracted they feel to them. Of course, people feel attracted to the attractive. And there's nothing wrong with that. It's only a problem when someone is so enchanted by someone's looks that they become blind to serious flaws in their character that should be a red flag against the idea of marriage.

And madam, I am no "sir".