I think I want to go ‘courting’.
I’ve been seeking a partner, not merely a connection. I’m longing for someone who I want to spend time with, who I can laugh and play with; someone whose values align with those of service and truth; a woman who wants to love me unconditionally. In fact, all the values I’m trying to hold.
I want to be with someone who doesn’t live 6000 miles away.
I’d like to be married. I want to explore us within this unique spiritual container, boundaried, committed, safe. Of course if it ever happens, I’ll be terrified. I’ll want to run.
I want to take it slow. I want to get to know who she really is. I’m ready to risk losing her love to find that out.
So where does my innate, longing for intimacy come from? Can it be that within an atom of chance I’m designed for intimate relationship? What mirroring took place at the dawn of humanity? Where does this yearning come from?
I believe I’m molded by skillful hand, by eternal love, by God. I’ve been uniquely created for this union; and I’ve been shaped in the image of One that longs to be in relationship with me too.
I’m watching the ducks. Down in the water, an extraordinarily violent ritual of the type only the wild man in nature can stage unfolds. A huge group of male ducks are beating the shit out of a female. We would call this rape. We judge it. A mallard duck won’t. He doesn’t have our special capacity for moral reasoning; no sense of right and wrong. Battered, she survives; a low, vocal, repetitive gurgle indicates she is through. Warming her eggs and nurturing her young is her new purpose; she’ll now drive away the males to protect her children.
Men chase women. Watch the ducks. Just watch nature’s cycle. Male bottle-nose dolphins will also coerce the female into mating, so do chimpanzees, orang-utans, and there are many other examples. I want to mate with you, or I don’t. That’s not objectification, that’s how I’m wired. On some level you’ll mate with me to make yourself safe from other men. Even then, I am subconsciously drawn to the most child-bearing hips in every moment with a woman; it’s the dance of procreation, a wild hymn to creation.
You can have a go at chasing us, but I haven’t met a woman who prefers it. You operate through a complex intuitive feel unknown to me, yes you’re attracted to me, but I hear many women say they haven’t really got a ‘type’. Men are more visually wired.
To begin with, it’s essential to note that the literature specifically studying men’s arousal patterns (gay as well as straight) has repeatedly emphasized their sensitivity to visual cues. As soon as the lust-inspiring image registers in their brain, they become turned-on—not only physically but psychologically, too. Exposure to such erotic stimuli immediately activates the parts of their brain related to getting an erection. (Leon F. Seltzer, Psychology Today)
So you want to attract me, and in you is a parallel genetic wiring, to attract the strongest man for your children, one who will protect and provide for your family. This is what your body yearns to do. You want to show me your body. You have to, to procreate.
This makes what you do with your body incredibly powerful.
So if I am saying “no” to you – I’m doing quite well right?
How do I choose to encounter you?
“Would you like to come back to mine for a few hours?”
Uh oh. Did I say that?
What is my intention? Once I start to nibble at the fruit, there’s a whole paradigm shift in me taking place that I will willingly buy into.
I am drawn inexplicably to the curve of her mouth, the little scar on her lips, the sweetness between her legs; I fuel her desire, and want to light the torch of this wounded, fiery princess. As we fold into each other, her eyes light up of with the truth of eternal possibility. I gaze into her soul; in her and through her is our divine gift, the sacred union at the mystery of our existence.
I’m longing for the one and to be one. I am longing for the one relationship that fulfills my need for intimate connection.
It’s difficult to say no. I’m no mallard, but I see men around me behaving with blinkers on. I’m gifted with reason, the ability to choose, to make a choice for what is right or what is wrong. I have the intelligence to see a moral law governing the Universe. A mallard duck is not blessed with this capacity.
Everything around me indicates that I can have what I want now. And we can most of the time; even sex. This is where I’ve found it starts to go badly wrong.
Getting naked is not really getting ‘naked’ is it? I want getting naked to be opening my soul and spirit and letting someone in, in to my hopes, fears, thoughts and dreams. Getting naked is about letting in the Holy Spirit. It’s a step of ultimate surrender. It’s a step I’ve tried to make with women before making it with my Creator. It really isn’t the same thing; this choice to be in relationship. Choice: a capacity putting us way above the level of the animal in us: choosing to love. It’s a risky step. It’s a big decision. It’s a step of faith: a step into the unknown.
CS Lewis captures this ‘law of nature’ in Mere Christianity
First, that human beings all over the earth, have this curious idea that they ought to behave in a certain way, and cannot really get rid of it. Secondly, that they do not in fact behave in that way…
I freely break this ‘law’ each day, this higher law that sets me apart from the raping mallards; the law that offers me choice. When I break this law I fall from the garden. So we struggle altogether on paradise burned; a fragmented metal of unsanctified sexual union.
If the goddess of my dreams walks up to me in the street or appears to me in a dance, I have a choice. The strong, unwavering, trustworthy man she really wants, will feel the “yes”, but say “no”. Very few women will offer themselves unless I appear to make myself emotionally available. It is the needy me who says yes; the man who wants to buy into her morality, her story; the man who is fulfilling an unhealed need in his own heart. The man who has yet to come to terms with his own pain.
Really, do I believe that having sex with someone with whom I have had no time to create a deep, spiritual, loving relationship with is going to serve her? These actions are lost. I’ve heard mature men in my men’s group advocate this because it’s their ‘truth’. Come on. It was Hitler’s truth to invade Poland.
It’s just very unwise.
I can avoid having to say “no” by not instigating a “yes”.
Don’t ask her home. If we like each other then I know she wants to feel desired, but she doesn’t need to have sex with me. She just needs to know I want her. She can feel desired walking in the park, being taken out, feeling wanted. I can choose to give her that signal. Ultimately she longs to surrender to the source of my energy, my inner wild man, yet I’m so programmed into the lustful ‘now’. Feeling that is fine, it’s how I choose to act that defines me as a man. If I choose to put myself in a vulnerable situation – why would I resist? I’m wired to mate with her; temporarily she embodies all my longing.
She becomes ‘the one’.
”Would you like to come back to mine for a few hours…”
I think I’m going to take up courting. It sounds wonderful. There are boundaries, a safe container to play out the dance and sex is out of the question.
Becoming genuinely naked, gradually, is the path I choose to walk.