People compare and contrast themselves with other people as a barometer for their own place in the world. It is not a bad thing by default, especially if you think you are doing well o lay to find out robber barons are exploiting you, but the practice makes the one making comparisons vulnerable to various deceptions. Jealousy and pity distort our lenses and filters. If we are looking for reasons to wallow because we think everyone e is doing better, it is not hard to do. If we want to reassure ourselves our personal Hell isn’t as bad as other people’s Hell, we can do that, too.
The game brings the strangest of ideas: people should be grateful that bad wasn’t worse. Be grateful you have cancer because there someone who has cancer in a war zone and you don’t know how good you have it. Retreat is confused with optimism, and then progress stifles because we can no longer determine what is good and what isn’t.
In the Patriarchal style, it is always a contest and competition. The hero and the villain are contrasts with the villain always losing in the comparison. Whatever the hero does, it is always better than what the villain did right across the board. Everything is a competition with a winner and a loser.
Even the notion of hero and villain comes out of our ideas of competition. The idea that two equally ordinary, normal, and nice people whose circumstances clash is almost never entertained. In the Patriarchal, we compare in order to decide who to root for.
The Matriarchal takes a different approach: we may compare and contrast, but to find the source of the problem and obstacle to find a mutually beneficial solution. It is not about contests or competitions, but cooperation. It is not about deification or demonization to produce propaganda, but looking realistically at a situation to make a map of progress.
Here, the protagonist sets out to find a better way. Of course there will be setbacks and opposition, but the hero will not manipulate the optics to justify his situation nor will he stomp on others whose life requirements are not I. Sync with his own. It is not about grabbing a self-serving narrative to use it as a shield; it is about bringing progress and prosperity by building better ways of life.
The Matriarchal style encourages no blinders: we are not encouraged to be grateful for rot or put a sunny spin on it. We do not whine or wallow, we face reality and deal with it head on. We do not pity or shade of perceptions with envy or arrogance: it doesn’t matter if someone has it worse than you: you still have it *bad* and the goal is to deal with it until the problem is resolved.
Sometimes dealing with the problem requires taking other people’s problems into the equation. That means who at first seems like a villain and antagonist may be, in fact, an ally, but only after understanding the other’s personal equations by deciphering them. It is a puzzle to solve, not a battle to fight or a competition to win. A jigsaw puzzle requires us to admit when two pieces do not fit, it means they belong with other pieces. In the Matriarchal, the goal is to see the landscape as a puzzle than a chess board: there is a place for everyone In this mosaic, but the goal is to find them in order to see the big picture.
But to do that, we have to look realistically at the world around us: we don’t use pity or fear to taint our view. Bad is the sign that the elements are not working in our favour. We do not compare ourselves to others so we can pretend everything is good. If we are in denial, things will not progress because we want to establish a false narrative that everything is perfect and progress seems like an admission that things aren’t right.
The Matriarchal gives us the freedom to progress, see truth and reality, and encourages us not to see others as enemies or yardsticks to prop up our fragile egos. We find solutions, not reasons to pity, spin, or hate. Life is to be embraced as an adventure in love and wisdom, and the Matriarchal is the map to make the most of it.