Oct 1, 2006

True Freedom

Back in the 80's, during the depths of the AIDS crisis in America, Some men and I were standing in a circle praying. We were praying for our sick gay brothers, and for the lovers and families of those brothers who had recently died. It was a frequent prayer. I wasn't exactly a devout Christian, but I had friends who were, and that evening I found myself in that prayer circle. One of us, Simon, who's lover was very sick, said "I don't know how, but I think that God has a purpose in this, and that we have a role to play in the future."

At the time I just forgot it. But this year, I remembered it.

Something is happening, and it's happening in the most unexpected of places - the erotic fantasies of gay men. Artists and writers are uploading what's in their hearts, and the nature of the web allows them to say things... bare things, that they otherwise maybe wouldn't share. There is a yearning in these works of art, a passionate desire for a better world. They imagine places of sexual freedom, of masculine power and beauty, of amazing love and hot, hot, hot fucking. They dare to imagine what it would be like to be a man who has totally overcome shame. I think they're visualizing heaven on earth.

In the Book of Genesis, the first result of Adam and Eve eating of the Tree of Knowledge, was shame.

"and they knew that they were naked, and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons." -- Genesis 3:7

I have to ask, what the fuck is that all about? Adam just disobeyed God, and suddenly he's overcome by a need to cover his "privates"? A man who until that moment was very publicly and comfortably naked, and then suddenly, he's ashamed of his own body. Why are the sexual organs part of this? Why is a normal body part such a source of intense love/fascination and fear/loathing? Why is it that I can bare my arm or thigh, but not my cock in public, and why do I risk arrest if I do? What's so offensive about it? Why did Janet Jackson's Superbowl "costume failure" cause such idiotic outrage?

It's a question I ask, but deep down I know the answer. It's because of shame. Sometimes, deep, deep down, I can feel it, and I feel just like the first Adam, way back in the day. Genital shame isn't something we're conscious of most of the time, it's so prevalent we don't even notice. It's like a uniform shame field that is always buzzing, crackling and modulating imperceptibly in the background, unless something pricks it (like Janet Jackson) and then the power of the field becomes visible. It has many aspects, from being pee-shy to rabid homophobia.

Of all men, gay men have been particularly subjected to shame. We get it from all sides; from the disappointed family when they learn we aren't gonna be spreading the sacred family seed; from religions that tell us if only we believe, we'll be saved from our hell-bent perversion; from health care workers who tell us to control our lust; from politicians who tell us not to flaunt it so much at the gay pride parade, and even from ourselves, because most of us don't measure up to the studs we lust after.

But it's not all bad, because like most of God's gifts, the scourging we get from society is a blessing in disguise. If gay men feel the shame more strongly than other men, then we also struggle against it more. Coming out to family, friends, church and state is an individual act of courage that maybe only other gay men can really appreciate. The feeling of profound peace after surrendering to the truth about what I am is something I'll never forget.

The truth is, when I choose to define myself by my sexual "preference", It's like nothing in this world is more important than that. Nothing. Every other label; race, religion, class, they all pale before the gay thing. I wonder why that is? What's so shameful about wanting to have sex with another guy? I wonder if gay men, just by BEING openly gay, aren't pushing everyone else's buttons because we're not giving in to shame, but everyone else is and on some level they resent it. They say that closeted homosexuals make the most vicious homophobes.

I think God is intensely interested in all that. He's "looking for a few good men". A few like Him - sexy studs who deep down, really just wanna fuck and get fucked. All the rest is just gravy. The gay porn we make is a collective cry to heaven, a petition to officially release the bonds of shame that enslave us, that keep us from being the sex gods we really are.

Then the man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome." -- Genesis 32:28

To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. -- Revelation 2:7

Art: "Saint Sebastian" by Tom Jones

1 comment:

Devin said...

Haha -I have always hated that "preference" shit too!!
what choice did I have in the matter? I never -even tho I tried furiously (when very young-hoping for awhile that normal would kick in lol)-had the single least little itty bitty 'it' for a female -
I can't even 'top' a gay dude -would that make my 'preference' doubly faggy or something?!!?
great start you had with this blog Michael -i dont even think i am quite done with 2006 -really fascinating ideas and everything -kudos to you!!

Related Posts with Thumbnails