I'm having another guest post today. This one's from a dear blogger friend. I've been reading her blogs since late 2010. We haven't met yet, but I feel a connection with her since she's from Negros and I'm from Iloilo. Both "hiligaynons".
This week's post is about Chivalry. What is chivalry? Is it still alive? Whatever happened to it? If you're a guy, do you still pull out chairs in restaurants for your dates? Do you still pay the bill? Do you still hold doors open for women?
It is said that chivalry is dead and that women killed it. The majority of women practice their independence, but look down on men who do not pay for dates. Most women want equality but frown at men who treat them as equals. My guest blogger is Marikoy, and here is what she has to say.
Chivalry. When the word is mentioned, it reminds me of King Arthur's era, of knights in shining armor, excellent in arms, courageous, loyal and gallant. And why not? Chivalry used to refer to knighthood, in Medieval times, and their code of conduct, including bravery, courtesy, honor, and gallantry toward women.
In Medieval times, that was. But how about now in the 21st century? Is chivalry still alive? Is it still needed? Or are today's women believed to be independent enough to take care of themselves and not need the special treatment from the men?
One typical work day, I tried observing men and chivalry. I found out that on the busy streets and crowded trains, most men would rather be selfish than give ladies a special treatment. They'd rather remained seated and nurture their pot bellies while women, even pregnant ones, continue to grow varicose veins by standing for lengths of time in the train. On the other hand, inside office buildings, men generally observe some courtesy by holding doors open, allowing women to get in or out of elevators first, and such.
Perhaps, chivalry is not dead, but half-alive, half-dead?... moody?... conditional?
Why is it that men nowadays sometimes forget to be chivalrous? Is it because of the idea of female equality that's more prevalent nowadays than in the past centuries? Is it because it seems unfair that men should do all these nice things for the women, while women are not expected to do the same things for men? Do people think it's some kind of a female conspiracy passed on through the ages to control and enslave men?
In my teens, I came across an article How To Treat A Girl (by A. Lynn Scoresby) wherein the author thought while in his teens that it was unfair for men to be doing all these little sacrifices so that women could be given all these special treatments. But soon, he learned some important lessons, came to understand why chivalry was important, and what good can come out of it for the men who observe it.
As the author came to understand chivalry, he concluded "When young women are ennobled by the respect young men show them, both are elevated. It never occurred to me as a young man that if a boy treats a girl like a queen, he is raising himself to a higher level too."
In my early twenties, I was fortunate to date someone who was not exactly physically drop-dead gorgeous, but I can say that he was one of the most chivalrous men I've met. Without the slightest hesitation, he opened the doors, not just for me, but even for complete strangers who needed help. I felt like a princess at the dinner table when he did many things for me such that I needed not lift a finger to dine comfortably. Like second nature to him, he walked on the dangerous side of the sidewalk so I could be on the safe side and made sure I arrived home safely.
After the date, I remembered that article and I completely agreed with the author's conclusion, that 'if a [man] treats a [woman] like a queen, he is raising himself to a higher level too.' Indeed, my respect for that chivalrous young man increased, because of how he treated me.
The same thing happens nowadays. When I encounter men who act with the courtesy that women deserve, I could easily imagine that they are well educated, highly civilized, and raised by goodly mothers who taught them to be honorable as the knights of old. But when I meet men who are quite the opposite, well...(rolled eyes, grimace)... let's not talk about them.
In conclusion. It is believed that women killed chivalry. That's because the women of today show and practice independence. As a woman, I know that there is nothing wrong with independence and equality. But I also have to admit that I sometimes send mixed signals to men. Like on dates, I want equality but then I feel good inside everytime the man pays the bill. On walks, I just walk oblivious to the world around me but I blush everytime someone opens the door for me. I am a self-sufficient independent woman, but I really feel good and appreciate men who are being chivalrous.
So is chivalry still alive? I'd like to think so. I have met some random strangers who still treat me as a princess. I know men who still hold the doors open for me whenever I go in or out of the grocery store.. who still hold the car door open, letting me enter the vehicle first.. who still walk on the dangerous side of the sidewalk to keep me safe.. who stand up when I walk into the room.. who still pull out the chair on restaurants during dates.. who still bring me flowers for no reason. Chivalry is not dead. It is a weak and maybe dying tradition.. but it is still alive.
Chivalry is defined as "the qualities or behavior, idealized by knighthood, such as bravery, courtesy, honor and gallantry towards women.". It is about being a gentleman. Nothing can be more sexy than a man who possesses the intellect and traits of a true gentlemen. And since we seldom come across and have conversations with a true gentleman nowadays, it makes the moment more valuable when we do.
A man who treats his woman like a princess is proof that he has been born and raised in the arms of a Queen. - Author unknown
About the blogger:
Marikoy is a Filipina living at Melbourne, Australia. She's a blogger, an artist, a designer, a writer, a pianist, a dancer, a dreamer and a wife. You could follow her on Twitter. Username: @akosimarikoy. She has her own Facebook page, "The Adventures of Marikoy". She's interested in so many things, including the arts, music and literature. She blogs about her everyday adventures and is the author of "Ako, The Adventures of Marikoy". Do visit her blog and read her great posts.