Last weekend, I received a question: why is sex not part of my concept of the 7 Belief systems? A very interesting question of which I’m not sure that it crossed my mind in 2015. Actually, Love was the 7th and last belief that I defined (my April 2015 blog). It’s important to realize that the word sex quite often implies lust and the absence of (romantic) love.
There are several reasons why sex is not part of the 7 Belief systems (2015 version, 2019 update):
– the main reason: sex is not a reason to sacrifice your life for, while Love is;
– sex is an act of Power and not a driver of Power;
– you can buy sex while you cannot buy Love;
– sex is rooted in lust rather than (romantic) love.
All of the 7 Belief systems have one thing in common: they provide a reason to sacrifice your life for a meaning/purpose, or a greater good: Love, Money, Politics, Religion, Philosophy, Science, and the Truth (2015 version). Interestingly, these 7 beliefs also provide a reason for killing another human being.
Recently, I’ve been wondering if the killing of 5 people by an involuntary celibate a.k.a. incel, challenges my 2015 concept. Wiki: “An incel is a member of an online subculture of people who define themselves as unable to get a romantic or sexual partner despite desiring one.” Obviously, these people must be able to pay for sex. Hence, this incel belief is about Love and does not require an update of my concept.
The ancient Greek had several words for love, which also explains our Western difficulty to define Love:
– agápe or divine love;
– éros or romantic, sensual and passionate love. Hence, our notion that eros = sex;
– philautia or self-love rather than narcissism;
– philia or friendship;
– storge or “the love of a parent towards offspring and vice versa”;
– xenia or hospitality.
Note: these are the most important Greek words for love. There are more Greek words for love.
In 1994, Michael Crichton published his book Disclosure which was also released as a film that year, with Michael Douglas and Demi Moore. In this film, the female CFO tells the local plant manager (Michael Douglas) that “Sexual harassment is not about sex. It is about power. She has it; you don’t.” (IMDb).
In my view, sex without love is also about Power (ie, to give and/or to take). Also see my recent blog on Cultural misogyny. Demi Moore has the power to take sex from her subordinate and former lover. Michael Douglas, who is married, feels obliged to give sex to Demi Moore, in order to keep his job.
Similarly, people always wonder why male and/or female prostitutes do what they do. Is it about love or lust for sex? Is it about money? Is it about being abused as a child? Latter appears to be mostly a ‘no’.
“In a survey of prostitution, the majority of prostitutes say their own sexuality, sexual curiosity and money are the main reasons they chose their line of work. Some 85 percent of prostitutes in a Danish survey say they are sex workers because of the money. Their average earnings differ little from the national average. Half of the prostitutes in a new survey say they became prostitutes because of sexual curiosity, and 68 percent consider their line of work as part of their sexuality.”Source: ScienceNordic-2012. Note: bold markings in quote above by LO.
The murders on prostitutes (eg, Canadian Highway of Tears) may seem to contradict my arguments above. In my view, these murders on indigenous prostitutes are about White Supremacy, a philosophical belief system, and not about sex. Other cases, like the Whitechapel murders by Jack the Ripper, suggest misogyny, another philosophical belief system.
In summary, sex is an act of Love, or Power, and sometimes Knowledge (eg, Philosophy) but it’s not a belief that makes you sacrifice your life for a greater good.
Note: all markings (bold, italic, underlining) by LO unless stated otherwise.