50 shades of grey

“So really it happens that the more sexual a person is, the more inventive he can be. The more sexual a person is, the more intelligent. With less sex energy, less intelligence exists; with more sexual energy, more intelligence, because sex is a deep search to uncover, not only bodies, not only the opposite sex body, but everything that is hidden.”—Osho

Let me just put it right on out there. It wasn’t until Craig approached me to pen a miniseries on 50 Shades of Grey that I planned on saying anything about it at all. Even during its peaks of popularity, I only checked out excerpts of the book.

Even during my own wild moments of engaging porn back in the day, erotic fiction could only hold so much of my attention, and dominants and dominatrix were never my thing.

So for me, when February 13 rolls around, I plan on giving the film about as much attention as the day that follows it (that would be not much at all). Yet because I know that there are going to be a lot of people—those who don’t come to our site and those who do; those who go to church and those who don’t—who will go to check out the movie, so I decided to break the series up into three parts.

The book/movie as it relates to the mind.

The book/movie as it relates to the spirit.

The book/movie as it relates to the body.

It’s my hope that it can spark some honest dialogue, because if there’s one thing that the phenomenon known as 50 Shades has proven, it’s that sexual fantasy never has and never will be just a man’s world. (Tweet This!)

So for the “mind portion”, let’s start there.

I actually just skimmed a piece last night featuring actress and documentary director Rashida Jones, who has a film on the amateur porn industry coming out soon entitled Hot Girls Wanted. Basically it addresses how more and more 18-19 year-olds are getting into the field and how it affects them. According to Rashida “It’s performative, women aren’t feeling joy from it…This would be a whole different conversation if women were like ‘we were having sex, we love it so much. We want more of it. We feel so good about our bodies and ourselves…’ It’s fulfilling a male fantasy.”

Based on the millions of women who ate up 50 Shades like it was a hot fudge sundae, I’m not so sure I can 100% agree with Rashida. Even if I wanted to.

Does that mean that I think porn is a beautiful, special and holistically fulfilling experience for everyone involved?

Absolutely not.
It’s not even close.
But every day, even here on this site, we speak to women who watch porn.
And a large majority of them got their start by reading erotica.

And many of them don’t want to stop.

So there goes another theory. Apparently sex is not about “men being visual” and “women being emotional” when it comes to their needs and how to meet them. It would appear that the book (well, the trilogy) was not enough for the ladies. There had to be some kind of visual to feed into the fantasy. It would seem that the book could only “scratch the itch” but so far. (Which is why I see erotica more as a “gateway drug to porn” more than anything else.)

And yet, as I was reading one of the interviews from the actors about the film, I found something that Jamie Dornan, the guy who is portraying Christian Grey, said to be fascinating. When talking about shooting scenes in the sex dungeon with his co-star Dakota Johnson (who portrays Anastasia Steele), he said this:

Some of the Red Room stuff was uncomfortable,” Dornan admitted. “There were times when Dakota was not wearing much, and I had to do stuff to her that I’d never choose to do to a woman.

Things in the room made him uncomfortable.

Some of the things that he had to do, “the real him” would never do to a woman.

Hmph. Doctors, scientists, and therapists alike will agree on two facts:

1) Sex can be a complex topic

2) The most powerful sexual organ is not our genitalia, but our minds. (Tweet This!)

Therefore, I have to ask. What is going on with so many of us that our minds are stimulated by what the BDSM world brings? Whether we choose to actually participate or simply watch Christian and Anastasia do it, why do so many of us find that it drives our senses rather than disgusts us?

Married people trying something new is one thing. But whether married or single, when we are stimulated by the thought or sight of people totally overpowering another (sometimes to the point of complete humiliation) or physically harming each other, then what does that say about us?

About our views of sex?

Deeper yet, about our views of the purpose of sex?

The Osho quote at the beginning of this post says that more sex can make a person more intelligent. Some may agree and some may not. I’ll say this: even Scripture says that husbands and wives need to engage one another regularly (I Corinthians 7:5) and being that God came up with sex. I get that it, within his boundaries, should only make a person better.

And I guess that’s my bottom line point.

Since the mind is the greatest sex organ and sex, in its original design, was created to make us better people, even mentally…

How is 50 Shades of Grey doing that exactly?


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