COLUMN – The myth of the male seed – EN


The male myth of conception versus the female myth of birth? Conceptual errors and tunnel vision corrupt the truth about human reproduction?

“Response to an excerpt from a New York Times article titled When does Life begin? by Elisabeth Dias.

Fertilization is the moment when a human being receives its genome, becoming a modern form of indigenization or ‘inspiration,’ says Scott Gilbert, professor emeritus of biology at Swarthmore College and co-author of a leading textbook on developmental biology. “It’s a creation myth, an origin story,” he said. “The female myth, the myth of birth, has been replaced by the male myth of fertilization.” (so much for the quote from the article).

Sure, but the latter myth, in my opinion, is a fallacy based on the persistence of a pre-scientific ancient concept and that is that it is the man who makes the woman pregnant. This myth still lives on in the social consciousness of almost every man even though it is a scientifically completely outdated idea . Men do not carry seed “in their loins,” women do not conceive. While in the 19th century it was clearly established that the germ of man is neither the male sperm nor the female egg, but that it is the zygote, created by fusion of an ‘egg’ and a ‘sperm’ during the process of fertilization, we still continue to speak of ‘men getting women pregnant’. This is a fatal mythology that should possibly be understood as the deep cause of misunderstandings and misconduct that lead to societal derailments such as rape cultures and the #metoo affair. Plus to such strange concepts as “penetrative sex”; sex is about coitus and that means a coming together. Human conception is NOT about a man fertilizing her nor about a “sperm” fertilizing an “egg,” it is about conception, which in turn is a coming together of a sperm and an egg, resulting in a zygote, which is NOT a cell but a single-celled human organism. (By the way, it is the child, the embryo that “makes” the woman pregnant).

Read this quote by Stephen Harrod Buhner (from “The Secret Teachings of Plants: The Intelligence of the Heart in the Direct Perception of Nature): ‘Sperm’ is Latin for a dormant, fertilized, ‘plant egg, a seed.’ The ejaculate of men is chemically more akin to pollen of plants. See, it’s actually more accurate to call it mammalian pollen. Calling it sperm drives a madness deep into our culture: that men plow women and plant their seeds, when in fact they pollinate flowers. Now. Doesn’t that change everything between us?

Most certainly it had changed everything between men and women! Not only about how we make love and intercourse with each other (fuck off with “penetrative sex,” get rid of the male myth about him deflowering her), last but not least, it would also have changed our responsibility towards pregnancy, perhaps even towards abortion.The myth of the male seed