2300 years later… The Egg or the Sun?
by Karen Henninger
December 29, 2013
Reprinted with Permission
My Painting, The Female Sun Hidden in the Clouds – What does it mean?
First off, It does not mean THIS:
Man consequently plays a major part in reproduction; the woman is merely the passive incubator of his seed.” Aristotle
And not this:
We should look upon the female state as it were a deformity, though one that occurs in the ordinary course of nature. Aristotle
All have in their semen that which causes it to be productive; I mean what
is called vital heat. Aristotle
The mother is not the parent of the child which is called hers. She is the nurse who tends the growth of the young seed planted by its true parent, the male. Apollo
According to Aristotle, the female human didn’t ‘have’ eggs that were fertilized by sperm. The human ‘eggs‘, yes, eggs, were produced entirely from the conception of the menstrual coagulum (earthy dirt) of the female and the divine spirit or soul, ‘seed’ of the ‘rational= divine male. Men were understood as producing the egg from seed. Women didn’t have any. Men created them. An egg from seed and dirt.
This was a progressive idea originally, now conservative myth. Aristotle and
his ideas were taught for centuries – and still are. Aristotle is taught as an honored ‘philosopher’.
Remember there were no microscopes before this belief developed until 2000 years later to see microscopic human ‘eggs‘ or wiggly sperm seed. Seed? Eggs? How do such things in our bodies get named? Or do the names influence what we see now? Even still, new understandings about female anatomy are less than 70 – 30 years old and not a widely enforced area of public education. In fact, we still have many who believe such information about sexual bodies should not be taught to children and are unimportant in most of the honored male professions for policy and decision making.
Yet the beliefs of and about Aristotle and their lingering mutations have been reproduced for generations of males for centuries. Knowledge of women’s bodies, nope. Knowledge of women’s history, nope.