Sunday, February 03, 2013

Going and flowing

Male partnerships of all kinds continue to intrigue me.

The Hero-Sidekick model shows up all over the place. And the variations of the Alpha-Beta and Blue-Red energies are not hard to find. Yellow-Green, with which I am intimately familiar, not so much.

It's too much trouble to find my earlier posts about this and link them, so: Hero-Sidekick is self-explanatory. Marshal Dillon and Chester, Batman and Robin, Holmes and Watson, House and Wilson, Duncan McCleod and Richie Ryan, Seth Bullock and Sol Star (in Deadwood). Alpha-Beta is a more workaday buddy version of the same, where one guy takes the lead and the other follows. It's the rare male partnership which does not run on this kind of energy and where both guys seem equally matched, with a repetitive dominance-submission pattern hard to find. Starsky and Hutch? Butch and Sundance?

Blue-Red and Yellow-Green are typologies of male romantic partnership developed by Jungian analyst Graham Jackson. The Blue is the conventional masculine guy, with the Red as the emotional and often artistic guy. (Dean and Sam in Supernatural are a non-sexual version of this.) Yellow-Green partnerships hook up an Apollonian sky-dwelling lives-in-his-head guy with a Chthonic earth-dwelling feet-on-the-ground guy. Spock and Kirk. (Me and B). .

This is not to say merely that opposites attract. Which they often do. But a partnership, be it friendship or romance or householding, needs a combination of difference and sameness. Lots of cultural commonality is often a big help and lack of it can be wearing. My ex and I, for instance, were hugely different in practically every way, --him Red and Green*, me Blue and Yellow, with little cultural common ground. Excitement gave way to alienation and then to exhaustion. If you speak a common cultural language and have some of the sets of oppositions listed above, things can work pretty well. Especially if you recognize what's going on.

Our cultural obsession with equality is fundamentally unreal and anti-natural. People think that they can have close relationships outside of roles, where power does not exist, liberated from "expectations". This kind of stuff wreaks havoc on modern marriage. And in male-male relationships, it can get played out as a matter of pride. On the one hand we are exhorted to celebrate and accept difference, but on the other we are taught to expect equality. Sorry, kiddies. Mother Nature don't work that way.

The truth is, Sherlock without Watson is just a brilliant and eccentric schizoid crank; Watson without Sherlock, just a restless and ordinary physician. Together: archetypal brilliance.

*He then found himself another Yellow man whose Blue is more pastel (less male vs male power clashes), and they get along great: many more common interests, age closeness, etc. 

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