Part of the series Perceiving complexity
Now, moving on to men. Regarding that abyssal power I wrote about in the previous parts, the social environment in the Altaic ethnic groups is not conducive for men to simply grow up with it, because the official mindset about masculinity is classical. They grow up with two contradictory sets of values. The one of the classical masculinity can be the default one (to some extent), but then they have to notice some aspects they need to alter in order to be in the flow of the raw reality power. Plus that, unlike the women, they really need to apply in real life such power, which makes things more complex. The women may be in the flow of this psychological power, but they do not apply it so much in real life, it is more about a potentiality, which makes things less complex (while other aspects continue to be complex from the feminine perspective).
As in the case of the women, the same question appears: what are you going to do with this power and these psychological insights when you live a normal life in which you do not face serious challenges? Here too, the contemplation of normal social life shows all the real complexity around it, which can develop a crazy side of you and/or cripple the self-confidence in dealing even with simple tasks. In such cases, these men need also to take in consideration the additional issue of the classical masculine ways of thinking and see what to do with them when they have their eyes opened to the raw reality perspective.
To start with a downright classical masculine approach, Qayta qayta of the Kazakh sigers Ahan Otınşiev and Rinat Satbaev shows what tends to happen when an inexperienced “meaningful world” side is trying to be helpful in the way the classical masculinity uses to be helpful. Rinat is like the “meaningful world” side of the self who wants to support the “raw reality” side Ahan have a successful life in the “meaningful world”. Things are not so simple, as the raw reality side can have different aspirations in life due to its allegiance to authenticity, and the “meaningful world” side lacks the depth in understanding such a point of view.
The unfoldment is not like in the Altaic type of humor as that of the Turkish Karagöz and Hacivat or the Japanese manzai, where the character who sticks to the “meaningful world” has from the start the impulse to suppress the other character who lets unfold in his mind the raw reality perspective. Here the former wants to be helpful, he notices that there is some value in immersing in the raw reality perspective, but he still does not get the essence of what means to be immersed in this perspective and he still ends up containing the latter.
This video is also an example of how the heterosexual Altaic men have a reorganized masculinity around the raw reality awareness. Some can be more like Rinat, struggling to keep a coherent and workable “meaningful world” side of the self and containing the craziness of the raw reality side (they are not classical men, since they have the awareness of the raw reality, they contain it and thus the raw reality side manifests through craziness at contact with the “meaningful world”, which makes them even more self-containing and they end up being too stiff). Some can be more like Ahan, living within the raw reality authenticity. Other can have a mixture of these two directions in different areas of their personality. (And women, even heterosexual, who think from the masculine “meaningful world” point of view can find themselves too in such situations.)
Those like Rinat are serious people who may lack spontaneity, wondering how the raw reality men can be so popular. To use again a musical example with Rinat Satbaev, you can see the video Sagınış made in collaboration with Nurlan Espanov, where he is trying to crack the secret of naturalness and popularity.
For those like Ahan, the hope to be understood resides at the masculinity with that fluid psychological power, which uses the ebru type of thinking for a more profound investigation of a long-term merkeling type and which also can make you self-confident enough to step out of preconceived notions and accept the results of such an investigation once you understand the rationale of his behavior, like in Şudıñ boyında.
The video probably expresses his feeling that he is judged by the society and the way he thinks this judgement would go towards a real understanding. The policeman tailing him is a good example of a person who is in the flow of the raw reality power, while also having periods of time with responsible retreat in observing what is really happening in a context before drawing conclusions.
In general, the issue of craziness is reduced when there is a workable relation between the two sides, when the “meaningful world” side is relying on the ebru type of thinking and is in tune with the raw reality side (this is in the Altaic case of using the ebru type of thinking, as there may be other types of workable relations). The raw reality side manifests itself through (crippling) craziness when the “meaningful world” side is following its classical rules and elaborates spider web types of mental structures too disconnected from the raw reality. If the elaboration of the mental structures is in tune with the raw reality side, the craziness is in manageable limits and it proves to be in fact very useful.
This is an example of a Kazakh man who has a good relation between the two sides, Gazizkhan Şekerbekov in the video Erkekpin men (“I am a man”). His raw reality side goes out into the world, he is innovative and resourceful in finding his way, he feels good about himself with all the mental freshness of the raw reality (his raw reality perspective is not crippling crazy, it is just dynamic enough to show him out of the box perspectives). He is not ashamed of not being a physically powerful man, as the Altaic ebru kind of power makes the men realize the drudgery of the classical masculinity and the profound rationale and value of the raw reality power.
He is still caught in the problem of the two contradictory sets of values about masculinity in the Altaic societies. The official mindset still revolves around classical masculinity, while in practical life, many men sense how they can tweak their masculinity in more authentic ways (but they still do not have new paradigms about masculinity). In the bar, he finds the “meaningful world” side of himself. At first it is an interesting surprise, but then the perception turns sour when he sees his girlfriend with the other side of him. He becomes aggressive, only to be relieved when he sees his own girlfriend coming. Not only that the “meaningful world” side is in tune with femininity (which tends to be less the case for men stuck in classical masculinity), but also each side has its own valid way to relate to femininity.
Many Altaic men who are leaning more towards the “meaningful world” side of their sense of self are not necessarily following its classical rules by the book, they have some level of a workable relation with their raw reality side. But if that level is very sui generis and unelaborated, if it does not amount to a viable bridge, then it proves to be fragile when they become interested in a woman. These men are sensing acutely that they are trampling with their spider web of thoughts on the naturalness and authenticity of the woman and they don’t know what to do about, it is a too steep learning curve to do something about it and they become awkward. All they can do is actuate and consume step by step every kind of trampling thought that comes into their mind until they reach rock bottom and their mind is open to the other kind of thinking.
The video Nigina of the Uzbek singer Janob Rasul, would be a good example of this case. The singer hired a thin actor, made him look even thinner with those clothes (it is necessary to give up the classical masculine self-confidence that you can make a difference in the world with the “meaningful world” spider web in your mind, you have to plunge in accepting the real life weakness in order to make the mental passage to the other kind of thinking). The moment when he notices the woman and he is mesmerized by her, a very powerful and very self-confident man approaches him for a taxi ride. It is the specter of that tremendous power one has when approaching femininity from this angle of awareness of the raw reality. The actor flusters and takes the man. Then he is awkward until he exhausts all the ideas to approach the woman and loses hope. This is the moment the woman approaches him and gives him a bit of a shock to reboot him and help him make the bridge to the other way of thinking. At that point the man exhausted all the classical masculine impulses, his mind has no classical paths to follow anymore and it can be open to notice the bridge to the other point of view.
Another example, Soyam janım of the Tatar singer Firdus Tyamaev. The video starts with a tough Tatar man exhibiting that authentic fluid raw reality kind of power. The story is in the Communist times, Firdus is awarded a medal for some achievement. He is the kind of man living in the “meaningful world”, with not very viable bridges to the raw reality point of view while he is utterly aware of the latter. He is awkward when the woman offers him a flower since he is too aware of the raw reality point of view and of its value. As he has no viable bridges to that mental state, the presence of the woman only messes up his mind. Then the song follows, why am I like this? He imagines himself self-confident, with a macho mustache like the musician men accompanying the woman, only to wake up again to the bitter reality. This is the moment when he reaches rock bottom, he exhausts the classical masculine impulses to face such a context and the woman appears. The mustachioed men invite him in the troika (they are her animus, further on I will give other Tatar musical examples with this presence of the animus/anima).
An example of a conceptualization of the raw reality power successfully going mainstream is the Japanese manga and anime Dragon Ball. Bulma is a young woman who goes out in the world, to explore it and find a lover. She discovers Son Goku, a boy with that tremendous raw reality power, living isolated somewhere in the mountains. Bulma invites him to go with her in a journey. Soon, they are noticed by Yamcha, a man who is a good fighter, but very shy and awkward when he finds himself in the presence of women. He is just tailing them from distance, but gradually he becomes involved in their conflict with Pilaf, who symbolizes the classical masculinity, a small tyrant full of himself and pursuing his dream of being in control of the world.
All three end up caught in his castle, Son Goku inadvertently solves the problem by destroying the castle when the real potential of his power awakens. The masculinity with the raw reality kind of power destroys the mental structures that constitutes the “meaningful world” classical masculine power. In those moments Yamcha musters the courage to touch Bulma to take her out of the ruins. For Yamcha, all this unfoldment was a mental passage to find a way as a man to manifest himself beyond the classical masculinity. For a while Bulma and Yamcha are lovers, but the center of the story changes slowly from Bulma to Son Goku.
Other nuance around this topic at the Tatar siger Rifat Zaripov in the video Kıçıtkan çıpçıgı (the woman is his real wife, as many Volga Tatar music videos tend to be focused on the raw reality). Here the singer himself is thin, in this case he is more open to be more experimental, to plunge in the raw reality as a different way to see things, but it is still the moment when he reaches rock bottom (because of this openness) when the woman finds him interesting and has the initiative to approach him. He must have no continuity with the classical point of view.
Or Nae ireum mutji maseyo (“Don’t ask my name”) of the North Korean siger Ri Gyeong Suk. The man is taking photos of the woman, he accumulates such bi-dimensional images in his mind about her even more than the classical men, because he is too aware of the raw reality and ends up containing its craziness too much. The woman has the initiative to approach him only when he gives up this kind of pursuit, he puts the photos aside and really thinks about her. Her approach introduces the other point of view, he messes up the photos and grabs them back in a different order, like the way things are ordered differently from the fluid point of view of the raw reality. If they are ordered like this, the woman has no problem anymore, it is visible that she is saying ippu (“beautiful”) and offers him friendship. The unfoldment of the video is about the initial rejection that is customary for women in contemporary North Korean society, but it has also the path of the man towards a more valuable mental fluidity.
In this case the singer is female, but I wonder whether there were men who created the video, as I have no knowledge of women understanding or paying attention to the tribulations of these men, to this necessity to do something about the masculine classical impulses in some way or another. The previous videos of the male singers show women who know how to wait until the man hits rock bottom and maybe give him a bit of a shock to reboot him to the other point of view, but it is likely about women who just have some vague idea that this is how they should proceed without really understanding why.
Many Altaic women like this kind of men, since they show promise to be open to the raw reality point of view. But in their rendition of the story you don’t see much awareness of the practical problems these men have in making a mental bridge to this point of view. And some of these women can have contradictory expectations from men and send contradictory signals. They sense the value in such men, but they also have reactions to value them according to the classical masculinity.
They can be like in Qora parang of the Uzbek singer Hulkar Abdullaeva, appreciating a man with a distinguished public presence, but in the same time being so drawn to men who don’t care about the set ways of the social life and who think fluidly out of the box. They can be like in Praktikant ağay of the Kazakh singer Indira Elemes, feeling somewhat awkward for liking such men. (The facial features of the guy from Indira Elemes’ video also make me imagine an alternative life path for Kim Jong-un if his father didn’t like him and dumped him in Central Asia. Just an awkward man looking at the promise of fame that woman created on the billboard.) They can be like in Mehebbet tamçıları of the Tatar singer Lyaysan Makhmutova, straightforwardly liking such men. They can be like in O’zingda of the Uzbek singer Ziyoda, with some rationalization around the reasons, finding superficial the classical female expectations about masculinity. They can be like in Taatta of the Yakut singer Kyunney, with a deep perception of what is that about and turning the process into art. Whether conscious or not, the feeling that the man has to really experience the diachronic fluidity without the classical masculine control of the situation tends to be there.
And there are also women who just settle with the idea of liking men open to the raw reality point of view and, when they do this, the way they conceptualize such men is by seeing them immersed in this point of view in the feminine way they are themselves used to as women. Probably you are aware of the very effeminate-looking Korean and Japanese male singers (to give an example, So In Love by the Korean band VAV), the demand for them is fueled by the local Korean and Japanese women. Again, in this case too, the women do not realize or simply do not pay attention to the male situation. And in practice many of these women still send contradictory signals to the real men in their lives, they would want them to be mentally open to the raw reality point of view, but they would also want them to fulfill the expectations of the classical masculinity, without wondering how these contradictory sets of values can be reconciled.
As for the men who embody these artistic expectations, probably many of them have their own initial openness to express this raw reality point of view from a feminine perspective, but there is a sense that they go beyond their own pace to meet female expectations. There are heterosexual Altaic men who go themselves to some extent towards feminine expression of the raw reality point of view and you can sense when they do it at their own pace, like in Tiridine Bandım (“Dipped in Juice”, translation) of Grup Aslar. The verses are about the newly married Turkmen man, who feels himself like dipped in juice. He assumed that this fulfilling satisfaction is for free, only to realize the psychological power of his wife.
I don’t know what else to say about these men, my own experience is rather about seeing the emergence of an out-of-the-box side of me (something like in this interpretation of Tiridine Bandım by Kubat) and about losing the classical masculine sense of psychological strength, by realizing its weakness from the perspective of the raw reality and by immersing in the tremendous psychological strength I can have from that perspective. These are the topics I can go more in-depth about.
The previous examples from the masculine perspectives I gave about weakness and strength or rationality and craziness are a (time-consuming) process to clarify for yourself and to figure out the natural way to act, by taking in consideration the classical “meaningful world” approaches that come to your mind and see how they stand in front of the raw reality point of view. It is not entirely like the classical female merkeling, which does not have to deal with classical masculine expectations of being in control of the situation. These men try to be in control of the situation and have the initiative, but the awareness of the raw reality and the merkeling makes them awkward and blocked until they reach a moment when they exhaust all classical approaches and all that remains is the fluid wisdom accumulated and honed in the meantime.
This does not mean that the classical masculinity is discarded entirely, the (long) process of clarification shows what remains valid or reorganizes as valid in the accumulated masculine experience so that it can be in tune with the greatness of the fluid point of view of the raw reality. In this clarification, you have on the one hand the raw reality power like the Terminator woman from Naqshli of the Uzbek singer Ravshanbek Abdullayev. The man (the same actor from the previous example of Janob Rasul) is shown as stupidly tinkering with those machine parts, all the accumulation of classical masculine experience in organizing and structuring things looks really ridiculous and inept compared to the raw reality fluid power.
But, on the other hand, after establishing workable bridges between the raw reality and the “meaningful world”, the long-term masculine experience in its newly clarified and distilled perspective continues to be very useful. Like in Ay-hay karaşların of the Tatar singer Guzelem. Her real life husband Salavat Minnikhanov is tinkering with an airplane, he is feeling great, in control of the situation, he is dismissive of her when she stumbles, in the idea that he is a man who knows how to do stuff and she, as a woman, does not. In response, she pilots another airplane to show that she is no less competent. Driving the airplane above the clouds is like the control of the situation men exerted for who knows how many hundreds of thousands of years. Still, it comes a moment when her airplane is unresponsive and he is showing her which buttons to push and levers to pull (the long-term masculine experience in this environment to deal with unexpected situations).
Salavat has a video of his own, Janım belen ant item, in which Guzelem appears as a woman in the flow of the fluid ebru power, in charge of driving the car and saving him from the bad guys. Considering the other videos of Salavat (I will get into more detail about him later), this appears to be for him a liberation from the classical masculine sense of identity that imposes itself as the first choice in his mind. He does not want to be like that, but he does not have another clear alternative. The only thing he can do is to confront that kind of masculinity, like the battle of Kurukshetra in Mahabharata, in which Arjuna is supported by the raw reality Krishna against all that represents the mindset of accumulation of static classical mental structures in the “meaningful world”. Or like the destruction of Pilaf’s castle by Son Goku in the previous example of Dragon Ball.
Once he has a masculinity in tune with the raw reality, he has a reorganized approach to the long-term masculine experience. In his wife’s video, we see how he initially has classical masculine impulses to be dismissive of her, but when she is assuming that mental domain of masculine control of the situation, he is supportive and he is sharing with her the long-term masculine experience. That domain is not his seat of power anymore, he is much more powerful with bridges between the raw reality perspective and the “meaningful world”.
And that domain is still useful in organizing things in the “meaningful world”, at least in the current absence of mental tools more adequate for the raw reality point of view. The way he relied on her feminine long-term experience about the raw reality and he understood new perspectives, she can rely too on his long-term masculine experience of being in control of the situation and understand new perspectives. This to and fro practical exchange is one of the good avenues for further deepening of the experience in thinking fluidly from the raw reality point of view.