Posted by: admiralfrum | December 16, 2009

Women and Narcissism

Disclaimer – it has come to my attention that some of the material contained below might be wrong. I’m just a pisher who doesn’t really understand anything. So if you have any insights, please drop a line in the comments.

I’ve heard it said for sometime that there is a difference between male and female attraction. Men are attracted to women for simple reasons – they like a face or a smile. Women however are attracted to being wanted – seeing that another person loves them and needs them.
In The Garden of Peace R’ Shalom Arush writes that the foundation for a healthy marriage is making your wife feel she is number one in your life. It struck me as strange – what’s with the narcissism? I don’t feel I’d need to be #1 in my wife’s life.
I recently read a NYT article entitled ‘What Do Women Want?’ – I won’t link to it because it is very inappropriate. What it said there was that men are categorically attracted to things, in an almost binary way. Women have a so-called “rudderless” system of attraction – one that responds to a wide variety of phenomena, but in a way that is ‘receptive rather than aggressive’. The primary need is to be wanted, not to want. ‘“Really,” she said, “women’s desire is not relational, it’s narcissistic” — it is dominated by the yearnings of “self-love,” by the wish to be the object of erotic admiration and sexual need.”‘
Now, you may ask, what is the Admiral doing writing such filth and shmutz? Has he no shame? On the Internet, of all places!
Well you see, I thought I’d mention this because it teaches us about chassidus. Even though sfiras hamalchus accomplishes so much, she can’t stand to be alone because she feels poor – “Leis lei l’garmei klum”.
However at a much deeper level, malchus is aware that she is rooted far higher than zeir anpin in sfiras hakesser (eishes chaiyil ateres baaloh), and thus deserves to be placed higher than him. This is similar to how us human beings feel that the gashmius is ikker and ruchnius is tfeilah. Really the ruchnius should be ikker and the gashmius tfeilah, but at a deeper level gashmius comes from atzmus while ruchnius is giluyim. So our hergesh is completely justified.
Happy Chanukah everyone.


  1. happy chanukah

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