Last night’s post prompted this (forthcoming) thought.

Chesterton’s justly famous quoted seems apropo to the discussion of patriarchalism and egalitarianism, at least if it’s modified a bit.

“Christianity has not been tried and found wanting: it has been found difficult and not tried.”

Substitute our choice words, and we get….

“Patriarchalism has not been tried and found wanting: it has been found difficult and not tried.”

Conversly,

“Egalitarianism has not been tried and found wanting: it has been found difficult and not tried.”

Somehow it seems fitting.

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Posted by Matthew Lee Anderson

Matthew Lee Anderson is the Founder and Lead Writer of Mere Orthodoxy. He is the author of Earthen Vessels: Why Our Bodies Matter to our Faith and The End of Our Exploring: A Book about Questioning and the Confidence of Faith. Follow him on Twitter or on Facebook.

2 Comments

  1. The fact that you changed the quote to fit both patriarchy and egalitarianism sparked a thought in my mind – is there really anything missing in true patriarchy that an egalitarian justly wants? True patriarchy (not a caricature as often put forth by both egalitarians and misguided patriarchs) involves the husband leading like Christ – respecting his wife so much he gives his life for her. It involves the two being equal in every real sense of the word, except in role, and even then the value of the roles are equal though they are exercised differently.

    I know there are some egalitarians who simply cannot believe that any sort of leadership can be exercised without power and domination and that any form of roles is an attempt to destroy human flourishing. But I think the large number of good hearted egalitarians are simply longing for a system that truly treats both as equals, and perhaps they would find that in a real patriarchy (as I believe God intended).

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  2. […] First, this comment by friend of Mere-O Brant is well put:  “I know there are some egalitarians who simply cannot believe that any sort of leadership can be exercised without power and domination and that any form of roles is an attempt to destroy human flourishing. But I think the large number of good hearted egalitarians are simply longing for a system that truly treats both as equals, and perhaps they would find that in a real patriarchy (as I believe God intended).”  The italics are mine–I think that’s spot on.  The difficulty is how this “patriarchal egalitarianism” is actually patriarchal and egalitarian. […]

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