Nov 08, 2012 5:54 PM GMT
Wow, talk about an over-reaching thread topic! haha.
First this OP is going to be longer than most so if you don't have time or are not interested in this, now is the time to click away.
Second, I'm starting this thread in conjunction with zeffery's thread, Why Gay Men Hate Their Bodies and youarewhatyouare's thread Poll: Do you like your body? I think both these threads are very interesting and have learned a lot from reading through them. Amazing discussions on this forum!
I have to preface all this with a little background about myself.
I knew I was "gay" long before I knew there was any word for it. Even before I was a teenager, I had strong sexual attractions for other boys. This was in the 1950s and 1960s in the rural American midwest. It might be interesting to note that the experience of growing up gay in that era and in that area of the country was very strange. On one hand, LOTS of boys were up for playing around with one another. Far more than one might think. On the other hand, all this was kept very secret -- especially from other adults, of course -- but even from other boys and there was considerable threat and shame associated with it. It was taboo to talk about but, oddly enough, less taboo to engage in providing one did NOT get emotionally attached. Of course in those days there was no internet so I felt very isolated. Although I might 'play around' with other guys, what I really wanted was something more and I had NO IDEA there was a gay world beyond the world I knew. I didn't even begin to learn about that until I was 16 or 17 and even then it was through reading magazines. It actually came as a shock to discover "homosexuality" existed. Weird, I know, but true for me.
The question in my young mind was two fold: 1) Why do I find other guys attractive (it felt like a curse at the time, however much I enjoyed it) and 2) Why is it such a 'big deal' from the POV of parents, peers, and society at large? I just couldn't figure it out. I mean, ok, some boys like to play around together. SO F'n WHAT? Some boys maybe fall in love. WHO CARES?! But apparently everyone cared as if it were their very own business. Why?
These questions accompanied me into my teen, young adult and full adult years. I'll not bore you with all the contortions 'being gay' put me through over the years. Suffice it to say that although there was never any question in my mind about my feelings, it took rather a long time to come to terms with them and to terms with 'gay culture' (which, initially, I found very off-putting and still do to some extent -- this forum being a breath of fresh air, btw).
All this now said, I had an insight one day standing in line at the check-out counter at the grocery store -- and this is what I want to run by you here. It might help to understand that, although this insight came sort of like a lightening bolt out of the blue, fact is it had been preceded by decades of study and inner work on myself of various sorts. I'm also a natural mystic and always have been.
As I was standing in line my eye happened to fall on a magazine cover that showed a very physically attractive man with his shirt unbuttoned, revealing his torso and six pack. Perhaps it was because I was very relaxed at that moment, I don't know, but when my eye fell on this image, I saw something in myself I had never seen so clearly before: The moment of arousal.
And what I saw was something very difficult to explain in words because it was a 'vision' not a thought. The thoughts, the words, only came afterward.
It was as if for a moment I was transported beyond this world and I 'saw' that what I was attracted to was not a man at all but an IDEAL FORM -- one might even call it a 'god' (for lack of a better word) -- I saw that this erotic 'spark' or 'charge' originated from a wish to unite, become one with, even embody this transcendent, IDEAL, masculine form. For a moment I saw the archetype of all male 'beauty' and my supplicatory relationship to it :
I 'lusted' to become one with it, embody it within myself on every conceivable level.
In that moment I felt myself to be fully alive and fully aroused and opened standing before my god. And I 'got it'... it wasn't about that guy on the magazine cover -- he was just a symbol for something ineffable. My true desire was sacred in its origins, much 'higher up' (so to speak) than the Earthly realm in which we live day to day. Desire is the wish for reunion with one's own inner god.
SO... I'm floating this past you guys. What I've come to believe is that being 'gay' is actually a form of mystical experience. We (and certainly our secularized society and culture) don't recognize it as such because we're constantly believing that our attraction to other men is just that, physical. But there is a MYSTERY here, guys -- The deep mystery of sexuality itself. At some point one has to acknowledge that SEX has a mystical component: That "lust" is a form of magical magnetism; that love at a certain level is the dissolution of boundaries and that orgasm is not only an altered state of consciousness but a momentary reunification with 'the divine' (or origin of all things).