May 24, 2016

The Meaning of Mom

Note: this guest post is different from our usual fare (starting with the fact that it's written by, well, a man), but I thought our readers would enjoy it. ~Anna

By George Fields

It is difficult for me to believe that motherhood has become a controversial issue as of late, but the Internet assures me that it has. There are those who have determined childbearing to be the primary obstacle in the way of women achieving their self-actualization; across from them there seem to be mothers who, quite to the contrary, view it as the height of self-fulfillment.  

Both of these arguments seem to me a bit wide of the mark. The argument for motherhood is not that it is a plausible route to the fulfillment of the self; it is that without motherhood, there would soon be no more selves to fulfill.

It seems the world has forgotten a certain matter, which is the matter of mortality; and having forgotten mortality, they have missed the meaning of “mom.”

If one knew nothing of revealed religion, one would find it impossible to avoid the conclusion that man is an unwelcome stranger in the fact of this world. All his days he labors to retain life, and death is his final punishment for having dared exist; for having dared to run from the unthinking darkness and meaningless black which preceded his presence in the universe, and will succeed it as well. “Living a meaningful life” is nonsense, for death renders all our labors and strife and achievements absurd. No matter what great art, or music, or business, or monument we create, the Abyss will un-create it.

Saturn, the Roman god who ate his children, lest they overthrow him, is the pattern of this world; for as soon as the world gives birth to us, it is eager for nothing more than to consume us. Time devours all.

Motherhood is humanity’s single bulwark against the reality of death; it is the lone sword born against time’s unrelenting threat of non-existence. By childbearing, man sneers at death, and spits on the face of cruel Chronos. The peculiar genius of mankind is saved by the peculiar glory of womankind; the Promethean fire sustained by the Vestal flames.

In the same way that the presence of wolves is sufficient justification for the presence of wolf-hunts; and the presence of barbarians is sufficient justification for the presence of barricades; so too is the presence of mortality sufficient justification for the presence of mothers.

Some may claim that I exaggerate the value of motherhood, that I have somewhat deified its role, and taken from God his proper right of giving life and light; but for those who do not look westward to blest Elysium or upward to seraphic Glory, motherhood is the only hope they can have for eternal life, if not for the individual, at least for the race.

It would be best if this discussion over the value of parenting be ended, since it has no good reason to have begun. If one, in his ignorance, requires a reason for a woman’s desire to have a child, no other is required than that man is mortal, and that motherhood is the medicine of immortality.


George Fields is a rather unimportant person who delights in unimportant things. Little is known about him. He currently resides in the Land of Cotton, since old times there are not forgotten

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