Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Being Submissive

Understanding well the historical rant of women towards submission, I, nevertheless, fell hard for a pastor's words in Detroit.

"Submission," he said, "is the ultimate expression of strength."

Hearing these words, I thought of other such words spoken by the Apostle Peter in 1 Peter 5:5. "Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed in humility."

Submission is not a dirty word. It is only when there is no submission "one to another" that imbalance occurs.

The lack of submission and humility also causes unnecessary tension and unproductivity.

As husbands should submit to wives and vice verse, employers should submit to employees and vice verse.

"Submission is the ultimate expression of strength" because it fortifies relations of every kind, moving things forever forward.

How submissive are you?


John O'Leary said...

Judith, as usual I'm trying to catch up with your prodigious web-logging output! Re submission, mutuality is the operant word of course. But "submission" carries SO much baggage I get exercised just hearing the term. Not just in the context of "submitting (unilaterally) to your man" - which is pathetically servile. Submitting to your boss (not that I haven't done so on occasion!) is just as toxic, especially to the larger organization. IMHO, submission to "authorities" in general - whether in government, business, education, or religion - kills the spirit, including autonomy, creativity, and self-expression. (End of diatribe.)

judith ellis said...

I have no problem with the word whatsoever, although I am fully aware of the baggage. I have, in fact, written a few papers after reading feminist theorists like Monique Wittig and Judith Butler when I was working on my PhD. Believe me, I understand the concern.

I don't know about re-submission; submission works for me. I have no problem with it. Men or women generally do not expect of me a submission that is not worthy of me or them. We all need to come from a place of honesty, a place that honors us first and then others.

Whether dealing with personal or professional relationships, I do not generally have a problem with submitting to others or others do not generally have a problem with submitting to me. It may be a matter of confidence and self assurance. I humble myself to others all the time, including children. Wisdom and understanding are both critical in submission.

There will be no problem with "autonomy, creativity and self-expression" where respect, love, deference, and humility are present in "governnment, business, education, or religion."

How was Washington?

judith ellis said...

You words, John, are never in the category of a diatribe. They matter to me.

John O'Leary said...

I meant to follow up earlier... You are right of course (as usual). I'm ranting and you are quietly speaking the truth.

Washington was great. I enjoyed the drive and plan to do more driving and less flying to client sites. (It will still save them money.)

judith ellis said...

Keep ranting, John!