Polygamy Polygamous

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(69:8.9) Modern mechanical invention rendered the slave obsolete. Slavery, like polygamy, is passing because it does not pay. But it has always proved disastrous suddenly to liberate great numbers of slaves; less trouble ensues when they are gradually emancipated.

(69:9.7) In earliest times women were the property of the community, and the mother dominated the family. The early chiefs owned all the land and were proprietors of all the women; marriage required the consent of the tribal ruler. With the passing of communism, women were held individually, and the father gradually assumed domestic control. Thus the home had its beginning, and the prevailing polygamous customs were gradually displaced by monogamy. (Polygamy is the survival of the female-slavery element in marriage. Monogamy is the slave-free ideal of the matchless association of one man and one woman in the exquisite enterprise of home building, offspring rearing, mutual culture, and self-improvement.)

(80:3.4) The blue men were perfectly honest in all their dealings and were wholly free from the sexual vices of the mixed Adamites. They respected maidenhood, only practicing polygamy when war produced a shortage of males.

(83:5.3) Group marriages gradually gave way before the emerging practices of polygamy—polygyny and polyandry—among the more advanced tribes. But polyandry was never general, being usually limited to queens and rich women; furthermore, it was customarily a family affair, one wife for several brothers. Caste and economic restrictions sometimes made it necessary for several men to content themselves with one wife. Even then, the woman would marry only one, the others being loosely tolerated as “uncles” of the joint progeny.

(83:6.7) Monogamy is the yardstick which measures the advance of social civilization as distinguished from purely biologic evolution. Monogamy is not necessarily biologic or natural, but it is indispensable to the immediate maintenance and further development of social civilization. It contributes to a delicacy of sentiment, a refinement of moral character, and a spiritual growth which are utterly impossible in polygamy. A woman never can become an ideal mother when she is all the while compelled to engage in rivalry for her husband’s affections.

(84:2.2) The primitive family, growing out of the instinctive biologic blood bond of mother and child, was inevitably a mother-family; and many tribes long held to this arrangement. The mother-family was the only possible transition from the stage of group marriage in the horde to the later and improved home life of the polygamous and monogamous father-families. The mother-family was natural and biologic; the father-family is social, economic, and political. The persistence of the mother-family among the North American red men is one of the chief reasons why the otherwise progressive Iroquois never became a real state.

(195:0.3) Upon such a stage of human society the teachings of Jesus, embraced in the Christian message, were suddenly thrust. A new order of living was thus presented to the hungry hearts of these Western peoples. This situation meant immediate conflict between the older religious practices and the new Christianized version of Jesus’ message to the world. Such a conflict must result in either decided victory for the new or for the old or in some degree of compromise. History shows that the struggle ended in compromise. Christianity presumed to embrace too much for any one people to assimilate in one or two generations. It was not a simple spiritual appeal, such as Jesus had presented to the souls of men; it early struck a decided attitude on religious rituals, education, magic, medicine, art, literature, law, government, morals, sex regulation, polygamy, and, in limited degree, even slavery. Christianity came not merely as a new religion—something all the Roman Empire and all the Orient were waiting for—but as a new order of human society. And as such a pretension it quickly precipitated the social-moral clash of the ages. The ideals of Jesus, as they were reinterpreted by Greek philosophy and socialized in Christianity, now boldly challenged the traditions of the human race embodied in the ethics, morality, and religions of Western civilization.

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