Friday, January 27, 2012

Sacred, or Scared?

Sacred Sex (part B of The Sleeping Dog essays)

Birds and bees do it. Dogs and mice and cats and rats do it. There is little that is sacred about body parts rubbing together, instinctually or intentionally, until meaning makes it so. But in giving the act meaning there are multiple layers to be evolved toward fruition that is in and of itself still but a temporary moment of the livelong day, however blissfully protracted. Such is the subject of Sacred Sex at the Sleeping Dog Retreat, with the rain thrumming on the skin of the skylight in the octagonal sanctuary. The participants in the lecture now commence asking questions, making comments, and their well articulated differentiations between male and female, the pain-body of centuries of enculturation, enslavement, expectation, and mankind's selfishness unravels, releases in the universe. The psychic rub-rubbing in the hubbub of cerebral contentions here stirs at my thoughts.

Since any and everybody is capable of some capacity or other of participation in sex, in whatever guise it takes, there is little that is special or privileged or sacrosanct about it, unless we make it so. Every virgin wonders about the naked relevance of the physical moment, and usually, in western culture, is given to understand the specialness of the emotional entanglement as well as the physical responsibility sex involves. Experience soon relegates degrees of participation, degrees of feeling, degrees of enjoyment, and degrees of the attendant hoards of psychosomatic problems that enliven our world; it is shame and guilt and desire and envy and jealousy and power and lust and insufficiency that spirals around within us as we seek more and more to be fulfilled. Surcease and celibacy notwithstanding, there continues a mental agitation, physical discombobulation, and the fundamental want to participate. It drives our species. It drives nature. It drives, or we take control. But can we take control out of our heads and while into our feelings?

Control is not necessarily a pejorative word. It connotes the awareness of responsibility and direction and practice and participation as it impacts another, let alone all others. At best, it might be argued, self-control might curtail an unchecked population explosion. At worst, it might be argued, self-control might be repressive and punitive. Yet self-control is the very thing that elevates sacred sex as an enlightened gift given to another and to the self from the fulness of one's being; a free feeling, or why think of it as sacred at all?

"Do you know how much I love you?" It is an accepted phrase; we understand the gift to mean 'an enormous amount'. Yet it connotes that there are degrees and levels to love, and sadly, that love itself is conditional; or else, that love is apportioned more to me than to another. After all, if love is given to every-body, when is it sacred? If sex can be given to any-body, when is it sacred? Is there not a confusion about them being the same thing, sex and love? Virgins, especially, wrestle with that question. Experience teaches some of us that they can be very different indeed. Sacredness, in the fulness of its participation and enlightenment, is about a total release of inhibition and curtailments, a complete giving of the self in absolute assurance to the oneness of the moment, and as such, is rare. It is the very checks and balances and insecurities and inhibitions and uncertainties, I surmise, that might well stop us from having the other kind of sex at all. Complete freedom makes sacred any act to be elevated above the ordinary, the usual, the mundane, the selfish, and the expected. "Lighten up," some say. Well, precisely! Ha!

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