Very very nice thread Chelli.
Let me give my personal theory first here.
According to me, personality of Supreme God is Ardhanaarishwar with half part of male and half part of female.
As per Swaroday shaastra (Naadi vigyaan), we all have subtle bodies (sookshma sharir) apart from our gross bodies (sthool sharir). The subtle bodies of all of us are Ardhanaarishwar bodies. Our left part is of female (Idaa naadi/Chandra naadi) and right part is of male (Pingalaa naadi/Surya naadi). In the center (spinal), Sushumnaa naadi is placed joining all 7 Chakras. These 3 are major naadis out of 72000 naadis with only 14 of them recognized which connect our various parts of the body and various systems. These naadis and chakras are part of our subtle body of course and not gross bodies so they can't be seen by surgery obviously like our physical organs. To see any subtle element or aura or divine bodies, one needs to have subtle eyes or divya drashti. In short, we all are partly female and partly male but only biologically we are of a particular gender depending upon predominance of nature or guna when we take birth.
Conceptually I look at this like this. Whenever we are emotional (and emotions can be positive or negative - Love or Hatred), our feelings are generated from our female part and whenever we are rational (and rational aims can be positive or negative - Justice or Material wealth), our male is active. Male is logical and female is faithful. That's why possibly Gopis were sages to gain the right knowledge (right object to devote to - proper direction given to mind with flexibility of thoughts with intellectually open mind) and became Gopis eventually to establish rigidity or solidity or determination in their faith on identified object or form of God to love.
Now coming to Dwait-Adwait concepts of SK.
Radha: Don't you love anybody?
Radha: Why? Nobody deserves your love?
Krishna: Look Radha. In order to love, you need someone else. When I can't see others as others different from me, how can I love them? How can I love myself when I see myself in you and everone?
So there is difference in their way of looking. Radha has the theory of duality (Like Hanumanji, Lakshman, Bharat) and she loves Krishna because she sees Krishna as different from her and despite ever eligible of mukti, she wants only this duality eternally in tact to feel the pain & pleasure of that love. Krishna has the vision of equality and understanding.
Relating the above theory with your topic of father & mother, both would love their child but there will be difference in approaches. Mother's care will be in the nature of worry more about child's physical safety and happiness. Father's care will be in the nature of worry more about child's abilities and virtues or virtuous aims. Mother will understand more child's pains & sorrows. Father will understand more child's philosophies, thoughts & aims. So saying that mother's love is greater than father's love will be unfair but saying that mother's expression of feelings for child's material happiness and protection will be more than father is fair because father will be constantly looking at child's fame and achievements and not at his/her struggle for it. Mother worries about outcomes in child's life. Father worries about the foundation of those outcomes laid down in child's life. Mother takes pain of child. Father prepares child to fight with the pain. Like we don't care to suffer pains in order to achieve our aims, father understands us and can tolerate our pains but feels more proud and happy to see us achieving our aims. Mother doesn't look at our sense of duty but takes on her (absorbs) the negative fruits of our past actions. She doesn't care how good we are for others but wants others to be good with us and if we are not good, she absorbs the outcomes of our wrong actions to protect us. Now when I say mother, I don't mean mother but mother element. Similarly father element, not father. There is father in every mother (like Devaki ordering Akrur to bring Krishna to Mathura to sacrifice son for husband and to ensure the duty fulfilled) and mother in every father (like tender Vasudev getting excited to get the news from Garg that his 8th child is still alive).
Well the mytho shows do seem to glorify mother in many scenes when it comes to comparison with Father or Guru or even God - Like Vashisth after Gurukul episodes telling RLBS the glory of mother, Garg glorifying Devaki while taking from her the two baby shirts, Krishna discussing with Radha in Golok when Devaki is singing lullaby and is able to see the baby but Vasudev is not able to see...and so on. When it comes to subjective comparison when it leads to degrade father, guru or God, I don't like such glorifying scenes at all (because emotionally I have more attachment with my father than my mother and also more attachment with God than any relative and because intellectually I believe that Father-Mother-Guru all are our closest menifestations of God - God can come in them and can empathize our philosophy, empathize our pain and guide us in life respectively - and also all these 3 elements are there in all three of them - parents can be our Guru and Guru can be our father-mother - and God can take any form for us and assume any role) but that is the general mentality of people that mother is the greatest (because that is the karunaavatsal form of God). I would therefore like to ignore the comparing part (superlative part) of above glorification and would like to look just at absolute and objective part of it. It is glorification of mother entity of the universe (call it Amba, call it Parvati, call it Radha, call it Sita or call it DAYAALU KARUNAANIDHI Ram, call it BHAKTVATSAL Krishna, call it BHOLE Shankar or whatever). All are mother qualities of God. Api chetsu duraachaaro bhajate maam ananyabhaak; Api chedasi paapebhyah sarvebhyah paap krittamah; Aham tvaa sarva paapebhyo mokshayishyaami maa shuchah. It is the mother entity speaking these verses of Geeta. Mother won't see virtues and vices of children but will only see their genuine love and true surrendership. It is the ENTITY which is glorified rather than a gender or a type of relation. A virtue or guna of Sagun form of Nirgun Brahm. We can say it is the DWAIT theory which is glorified again and again over ADWAIT theory (As in the dialog/quote "Sagunopaasak moksha na lehi"). In absolute sense, mythos even glorify father - or Adwait approach (though never relatively calling better than mother perhaps) like Ram ready to sacrifice anything for Dashrath, Ram preaching Lakshman when Lakshman was ready to lift the weapon on Dashrath, Bhishma's character, Indrajeet's character. So, summarizing my reply to your question - yes, mytho shows have relatively glorified motherhood relationship possibly to reflect the mentality of mass only but we need to look objectively at it as female GUNAS in any biological gender and not as RELATIONS or PERSONAL INDIVIDUAL ROLES. We do see fathers who are tender and mothers who are strict (again for children's good only) but it is the tenderness (rather than mother) which is glorified to be superior as compared to strictness (rather than father) over here IMO which again is not really necessary to be in the form of comparison to degrade the other strict approach.
P.S.(unrelated to the thread)
Alternatively, instead of Male-Female, DWAIT concept can also be looked at as two elements of Supreme - Lord & devotee. Ram & Hanuman. Lordship & Surrendership. When we are in action and realizing self and knowledge, and rescue someone seeking our shelter, that's Lord element in us; and when we surrender ourselves and trust HIS powers, that's surrendership element in us. When Hanuman worships Ram, he is his devotee. When Hanuman rescues Ram from the trouble when Ram surrenders to him, he performs the role of lord himself becoming active for rescuing function. Such is the beautiful relation of HariHar. Nothing related to our topic (this last para) but just completing the incomplete interpretation of mine about Dwait concept which I used to reply here above in the thread.
Edited by ShivangBuch - 17 January 2012 at 5:13am