And the man shall leave his mother and his father ans shall journey on to where the two shall be one flesh.
However, the daughter never “leaves”. She is given to her husband by her father. She passes from one bower to another, and is never uncovered. We see the remnant of this ancient truth in our traditional marriage custom: “who gives this woman?”
Feminists and oppressive men have successfully destroyed this truth so that young women can now go out into the world, in this sense, uncovered, unhomed. Many still sense the nuance Milton embedded in that last passage from Paradise Lost, sense how bitter it is to have all the world before you. What we have accomplished is brilliantly depicted in such portraits as “Sex in the City”, where the women, in their glorious liberation, are all bitter, neurotic, unhappy, unloved. They have sex but they don’t want it. What they want is loving husbands. And sex is a very poor substitute.
But this is no argument for the patriarchal cultures that we’ve seen too much of, in which the daughters are regarded as a species of property. This is no design for a better society, and designing a better society on “biblical principles” is always a recipe for oppression. My only point is writing this is to remember a vision from another world. It would be for women to judge how to live it out. Least of all, while lectured by men.