Relationships to the ethereal exists on borderlines. God binds and unbinds us like that Madonna song, “borderline, feels like I’m goin’ to lose my mind.” We can use purity in a broad sense to navigate this borderline. Purity has gone too long as images of young, virginal schoolgirls. The Virgin Mary is the perfect picture of purity of a kind that folds and peeks – a kind of purity that Ignatius Loyola, St. Teresa of Avila, Marquis de Sade, and Annie Sprinkle all might have a stake in. The Virgin Mary experienced the purity of life. To be in a pure state is to embrace the world; to be open and ready – as pornographic as it sounds, to be like Juliette in the Marquis de Sade’s book Juliette – a body and soul open for Godly exploration. I’m not suggesting that the Virgin Mary was raped by anyone, or that she engaged in sexual contact with the angel (NO!) – or that you have to engage in sexual contact to be pure (but as long as it’s consensual and in a loving relationship…). I’m saying that the Virgin Mary was open to God in a state of transcendence. I’m saying that through experience, the Virgin Mary was practicing the kind of purity embodied in The Big Night, where the main character is told to “go out and grab life by the asscheeks.” (of course, it’s the villain saying that, but I still think it’s a good line). That kind of purity and submission is a fire in the heart (and the heat).
Although submission has a negative connotations in some circles, I think one of the most powerful things you can do when riding the borderline is to ‘submit.’ It is like Mary’s ‘saying yes,’ and giving herself up to her weakness. I am not saying to become a complete peacy peacy passive/passive aggressive person (I think some violence is necessary) but in the submission, maybe we’d discover assertiveness. Mary’s submissiveness, in its times of love, can be modeled by shooting lightning bolts from our finger tips and singing melodramatic songs – and in times of hate, causing dust storms or uprooting trees. It is tapping in. Annie Sprinkle calls it Metamorphosex (yes, I have problems with Annie Sprinkle and her take on sex work, BUT I still love some of her theories). It might be called personal sadomasochism (and yes, I am still completely turned off and revolted at the Marquis de Sade’s work at the same time I am fascinated). Or ecstasy. Spiritual retreat. A state of mind where the soul has a considerable share, and the body has a big part in it also. A kind of pure, eager, open readiness to perpetual binding and unbinding because You “just keep on pushing my love over the borderline.”
edit: lines that have inspired that post include the chapter on celibacy in Thomas Moore’s The Soul of Sex, and Reshad Feild’s The Last Barrier.