Collective Phenomenon in the Construction of Sexuality

January 17, 2012 at 04:00 | Posted in Everything | 10 Comments

For the moment, I skip my promised post to AKH in order to address a much larger issue that pertains to everyone who still reads the blog.

A journey of self-discovery has led me to propose theories on sexuality which I strongly believe to be fundamental in understanding human relations.

I’ve been studying sexuality for quite some time now, trying to find the answers to my own deviations, because I thought they were unique and thus, in the social sense, “evil.”

To be sure, the reader can skip the next paragraph; it just establishes credentials. But at least know that I have done my research before passing judgment on what I should necessarily say.

I picked up multiple volumes of Freud, I dove into an anatomy of sexual destructiveness by Erich Fromm, took a turn with Marcuse and learned about his sexual utopia:  Freudian optimism, found a social comparison to sexuality and radical deviations within the work of R. D. Laing, and even now I’m still progressing through the psychoanalytic literature. I’m even trying to put up with the infamous Jacques Lacan, who is purportedly worthless but nonetheless vital to my inquiry.

It was quite a shock to find out that everyone is deviant in some way or another, that I was not radically other. However, it was not a relief; I still retain the sense that I am insignificantly other.

But enough about my own problems. Let’s get down to business.

If one gets nothing out of this post, or worries at its length, at least understand these next four paragraphs, because they summarize what I am about to say:

I decided, instead of being led by the unconscious impulses, that I would first know these impulses before they led me to pleasurable gratification. For to “know thyself” is the highest good, for then all things subjective may be mastered, and then objective mastery comes easier.

For why should one eat if they are not really hungry? Does it not make one unhealthily obese? Yet many people, under the spell of boredom, or under the gloom of depression, eat for these reasons that lie outside of the real desire to eat. Real desire is subverted and a person is led to falsely desire something, when they actually do not.

It is thus with sexuality; why should we gratify our sexuality when we are not truly desirous of gratification? A group of people ends up relating with each other through a certain “sacred” image because they lack the ability to relate their deviant sexuality without such a medium (this is how it has been since the beginning of time). It is possible that the image becomes a sexual object because of its significance within the group. Many times people within the group are blinded by this significance, and end up thinking that they truly desire the image. However, the only reason they desire it is because they have paired their real sexual desire with the human desire for recognition. This creates a pseudo-sexual desire. Thus, under the influence of the group, we not only ignore our real sexual desire in favor of this pseudo-sexual desire, but we also take it to be our real sexual desire. This produces unhealthy effects, just like eating when we do not really desire to do so.

So let me give a quick example of what I mean by this so as to relate it to the audience. The “sacred” image that I know most of you have is the anthropomorphic animal. Which is a very revealing “sacred” image because a short-hand word for the image is “anthro” which means “man.” Anyways, what is to be said about the image in question? What is desired in the image? I say that this desire for para-humans (or pseudo-animals) is a pseudo-sexual desire because a group is formed on its basis. We are merely trying to relate some aspect of our real sexual desire to another person, and we end up doing it through a group that has the same “sacred” image as we do. So in order to be recognized by the others, we renunciate or repress a chunk of our real sexual desire:  in the case of this example, the pure human aspects of sex are repressed and hidden behind the “sacred” image of the pseudo-animal. So in this pseudo-sexual desire lies this fundamental aspect:  the group represses the real sexual desire of the individual and thus tells the individual to renunciate his particular deviations. And thus, as a member of the “furry” group one is told to renunciate his “self.” But the rest of this conclusion lies at the end of this inquiry.

I ask that you at least attempt to read what is below to come to the conclusions; if I am too technical, just skip to the conclusions which I will separate in bold.

What is the point of this post, and why should you even be reading it? If I know my audience, they know that I know the answer. They should want to know what drives them, what causes them to act, to imagine, in one word, live. I have the feeling that to know is not the highest good for my audience, but that they would enjoy someone else exposing knowledge to them. And thus I present a post on

The influence of the collective on sexual development.

How does a collective, or a group of people, influence the sexual development of the child and even the adult?

The infant grows while it has no genital apparatus and thus has an extremely imaginative sexuality. Sexual stimulation may be affected any of its pre-genital zones (such as the mouth or the anus). A baby will be attached to mother and father, who often stimulate these areas, and thus, will attribute a sexual relationship to them. These are all basic Freudian concepts. It is not surprising or inhumane, either, since the baby is essentially inhuman, lacking the mental apparatus of consciousness.

How does an incestuous baby become influenced by the collective in its sexual development? We see the development of the Oedipus complex, where the male child finally desires some type of love-object (i.e., the mother). He also hates his father as a result of this desire, because he is in a competition (in the mind) with his father for her love.

During this phase, the child will most likely experience the social world first hand. Interactions with the father inherently teach the jealous child certain behaviors that will be copied in order to win the love of the mother. And of course, if the male child is overtly sexual, the mother will reproach him, may threaten castration (in a subtle way, of course), and thus, will keep his sexuality in check. Of course, this is quite normal in development and merely teaches the child about reality, putting a check on his imaginative sexuality which could never be gratified. None of this, though, implies a pseudo-sexual desire. Eventually the Oedipus complex is broken up because incest becomes completely impractical to the child who now understands external reality. But before that happens…

There is something that happens during these social revelations. The male child finds out, eventually, that everyone does not have a penis, specifically, his mother. This is a shock to the child and makes him fear the previously mentioned “castration threat.”  Most children (I argue ALL children) will come up with a lie to hide this fact. He will then create what is called a “fetish” and thus give the woman an “imaginary penis.” He gives this to her by giving some aspect of her the same significance that he gave the penis (i.e., A “SACRED” IMAGE!). It also gains a sexual significance. This will be shown to be extremely important later.

Let’s skip to adolescence.

The adolescent is, in our culture, thrown into a world of hormonal development and the pressures of a transition into adulthood. The rules of the social world are learned and sexuality is, though not really repressed, kept from being discussed, in regards to deviations. Because of course, curious teenagers will discuss the biology of sexuality frequently, and allude to it in jokes (the joke is a mechanism of making what is feared into something palatable as unserious). But they aren’t allowed to discuss the sexuality bottled up in their heads, the deviations like the desires to hurt someone, to be hurt by someone, etc.

At least, in my adolescence, this was true. One would not go to the social world in order to gratify their sexual impulses, because the social world is made of repressed sexual energy! Freud calls this sublimated libido, which in my mind is a much more refined term. Brotherly love is derived from the repressed sex we would pay for with a hooker, the same sex we would have in the relations implied in the incestuous Oedipus complex.

But instead of relating to others with our sexual deviations, since we literally cannot, we go into our private chambers and masturbate our deviant phantasy away.

Or, at least, this was formerly the development of the adolescent.

Now, with the advent of the internet and the “social” medium, we are like disembodied spirits that speak what is in our minds. Well, at least, we try to. This is where things get complicated.

Formerly there was a uniting agent of the social world, a “sacred” image, that was called god. God was “the Centre” (to use a Buberian term), the relation between all Western men in some of the ages preceding this one. Could one discuss sexuality through the medium of god? Preposterous! The idea was unheard of. But now the “sacred” image has become more relative because god has died.

What was the most striking image of your childhood? What was the experience that you have become obsessed with? It is possible that this is unconscious, repressed behind the pseudo-sexual desire that has been adopted. Of course, it is also possible that it is the most prevalent image around you, something you are completely conscious of. Earlier I mentioned that the fetish is a replacement for the “castrated penis” of the female, so this is technically the first “sacred” image. It will be different things for different people. It may be some type of clothing, a woman’s nose, a pet she has, her pregnancy (which is what she desires when she finds out she lacks a penis; the baby IS her penis). This develops into something more complex later on when it fuses with the real sexual desire of the adolescent/adult.

Anyways, as has been described, the “sacred” image is this image of childhood. Let me give you a few examples from our modern world. Some people now have the pseudo-sexual desire to have sex with a cartoon woman (or man) in a commercial. Some wish to have sexual relations with video game characters, pseudo-animals, transexualized anime characters, action figures, comic book heroes,…the list could go on forever. These are products of the combination of a fetish with a dear childhood experience.

What I mean to say is, the “sacred” image is now a varied and relative uniting agent between two or more people that originated in the fetish and in a childhood experience. And since it is not god, it is easy to attribute a sexual significance to these new “sacred” images.

Why does the “sacred” image get not only significance amongst a group but also this sexual significance? It is because these deviations cannot be expressed in terms of language. We have never truly related them to another person in history, because the “sacred” image of god was blocking them. Instead we “express” our real sexual desire through the “sacred” image. But of course, we must realize that this expression is NOT the real sexual desire, but a pseudo-sexual desire.

For instance, say that Male Patient 11 had an indescribable desire that involved being gratified by a female that happened to also be pregnant.  Say he also has a fascination with a certain cartoon that involves a pregnant woman. He comes across internet pornography of his fetish PLUS the “sacred” image. He may now masturbate with not only his phantasy but also with this image in hand.

But what reinforces the “sacred” image is being around others who share the same “sacred” image in their pseudo-sexuality. A group is formed on the basis of this image and the individuals within the group communicate through it. They particularly communicate their real sexual desire through it, so this is the diagram of communication that develops between the group (A = individual, B = interlocutor or second individual, O = “sacred” image, — = real sexual desire, >> = pseudo-sexual desire):

A — O >> B;

B >> O >> A;

A >> O >> B

Eventually the real sexual desire is lost through the “sacred” image.

But why is it lost? In order to relate through the “sacred” image the real sexual desire must be suppressed in some way. Everyone does not have the same sexual deviations, though this is the appearance created by the collective phenomenon. Thus, in order for the group to relate on an equal plane through the “sacred” image, the real sexual desire of the individual must be “repressed” in the Freudian sense. This means that certain sexual instincts are “stopped” and not allowed to be gratified, lost in the unconscious.

So being around others that are supposedly helping you to express your real sexual desire are actually suppressing your real sexual desire in favor of a group-palatable pseudo-sexual desire. They repress your being, your individual self, in favor of their pre-packaged group identity. And you become that identity once the repression works its magic.

To conclude:

The collective phenomenon of group sexuality is a mechanism of repression, JUST LIKE the old regular social world used to be, the social world of the church. Instead of the social world mediated by god which was a repressive group, we now have replaced the institution of the church with a seemingly less hostile group centered around an equally repressive “sacred” image (that is relative to each group) that forces each individual to repress in themselves whatever is not pertinent, sexually, to that “sacred” image. Thus belonging to a group is sublimation of your individuality and absorption into a whole where that individuality disappears. Your real sexual desire is NOT revealed by that group, nor is the “sacred” image really the aim of your desire. That is merely the aim of the constructed pseudo-sexual desire that is made for you by the group.

The unhealthy aspects of having your being repressed by other people is documented and easily demonstrated. A lot of mental illness (formerly called neurosis by Freud) results from such things, from phobias to depression. Plus, it suppresses you as an individual. I suggest searching your self, and by this I mean just being alone and thinking about who you are, what your desires really are, and just getting away from the group you have been repressed by. Being around nature is a good place to start, because you can basically lose all of that repression by experiencing the natural world minus human or group influence.

I hope that this has helped someone somehow.

If anything is not understood, or if any criticism is necessary, PLEASE post it. I would be glad to hear and respond to it. I apologize for this ahead of time, that I was not able to invest my full mental energy near the end of the post. I emptied out a lot of knowledge at the beginning of this post and just couldn’t finish it out. I tried my best. I wish the solution part of the post could have been much larger.

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10 Comments »

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  1. Next time I’ll split a post like this into multiple parts. I had to radically shorten this post because of how long it took to type and how long it would have been to read.

    But it was practical to do this because I was pouring out a lot of knowledge and couldn’t hold it in.

  2. And this

    This is why i’m glad my brain didn’t work normally until it was too late for something like this to fguk me up.

    Not exactly what I was expecting when you said you had a post in mind, but an interesting read in any case I guess.

  3. “This is why i’m glad my brain didn’t work normally until it was too late for something like this to fguk me up.”

    hahahahahaha. IT’S NEVER TOO LATE :B

  4. “hahahahahaha. IT’S NEVER TOO LATE :B”

    IT IS NOW
    BECAUSE IT KNOW WHAT ITS UP TO
    sneaky bugger

  5. * I KNOW WHAT ITS UP TO

    way to contradict myself

  6. IT KNOW

    way to contradict yourself

  7. I don’t think you need to apologise :3 the post didn’t seem cut short to me, and though I don’t think it’s aimed at me (as I don’t identify as a furry) I liked the solutions part: surrounding yourself with nature, or just escaping other humans, is great for being honest to yourself. It also helps me see myself as the individual creature in nature (which extends to the vast universe as a whole) that I am, rather than something to be compared to others. I am only a human to those wish to categorise life and know of this category.

    Is there anything you wanted to add to the solutions part?

  8. Thanks, and it was not aimed at anyone in particular, but aimed at helping everyone (even me), except Axle, who doesn’t have to deal with this stuff. The example of the furry was just something that I thought applied to the majority so I used it, just as a means to understanding what I theorized.

    I’m glad you liked the solutions, but I felt like I did not share my full knowledge in regards to the possibilities. Basically, any situation that involves you as self and someone or something else as distinctly/radically other from you will help you recover from group repression. It is the “I-Thou” relationship Buber talked about in his pretty obscure book about Jewish mysticism.

    Some more examples of other methods:

    1) In certain ways, a relationship with a god, gods, God, etc. can be beneficial to mental health. Unless the god/gods/God is connected to a religious group repression, which is unhealthy. If one singles himself out before a god, as he does when he singles himself out before nature, he will experience the same relief and really see himself reflected in the godhead.
    2) Have a genuine relationship with one other human being (note: this ONLY WORKS when you are alone as two distinct people, not with more). In the other person you can confide your self, and they can confide theirs. You can get away from group repression by returning to the classical friendship that we tend to downplay now. The only problem with this is that other people may indirectly become involved; as in, someone else will be brought up.
    3) Attach yourself to a living being other than a human. Conure is probably best at this, I find myself using it a lot too. When you are with an animal that you have truly bonded with, there is no repression involved. You can behave however you want in front of the animal. And plus, that animal truly values your company and can really help you get out of your repressed mindset. It’s pretty much like nature without the HUGE effect of isolation and glory, which to those who want to loosen group repression, is the greatest feeling in the world (I know this for a fact).
    4) Isolate your talents and use them for yourself. Be as selfish as possible in regard to your talents, don’t just give them away to others on a whim. Don’t “throw pearls to the swine” for them to trample on.

    I put the example of nature in the post because I know for a fact that it really isolates you, mentally and physically, draws attention to yourself, makes you feel like a sort of god really. It isn’t like the ecologists claim: it doesn’t make you feel insignificant as a man in the face of the great “Nature.” It makes you feel like a conqueror, an adventurer, a romantic crusader who is above all of it. It really points to individual autonomy in the end. But it is also an autonomy of responsibility, it really makes you value nature, and it makes you feel for another individual, because you want to pass on this great tradition and lifestyle to the next generation. So you begin to love your UNBORN “neighbor” as you love yourself. So in this selfishness you become TRULY selfless. You become “human.”

  9. “It isn’t like the ecologists claim: it doesn’t make you feel insignificant as a man in the face of the great “Nature.” It makes you feel like a conqueror, an adventurer, a romantic crusader who is above all of it.”

    It probably depends on your personality.

    I do feel superior in nature :3 like (because I am) someone with much greater knowledge of the surroundings (extending to the universe as a whole) and physical size/strength (though not speed) than the other creatures nearby (in western nature at least, since it just has small animals). It gives me a feeling of mastery and relaxation. Especially because I don’t actually have to live there, and can run away to a much better place when I want to. ;P

  10. “Especially because I don’t actually have to live there, and can run away to a much better place when I want to. ;P”

    Exactly.


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