It is Little to Give (Love vs Sex 246)

“What is there I can give you? Love, it is true.”

“And is that so little?” I asked looking into his eyes.

“Yes, my dear, it is little to give you,” he went on. “You have beauty and youth. Often now I cannot sleep at night for happiness: I lie awake and think of our future life together. I have lived through a great deal, and I think I have found what is needed for happiness: a quiet, secluded life here in the depths of the country, with the possibility of doing good to people to whom it is easy to do good which they are not accustomed to receiving; then work – work which one hopes may be of some use; then leisure, nature, books, music, love for a kindred spirit – such is my idea of happiness, and I dreamed of none higher. And now, to crown it all, I get you, a family perhaps, and all that the heart of man could desire.”

“It should be enough,” I said.

“Enough for me whose youth is over, but not for you,” he pursued. “You have not seen anything of life yet. You may want to seek happiness elsewhere, and perhaps find it in something different. At present you believe that this is happiness because you love me.”

Happily Ever After

Leo Tolstoy          1859

Cribb Comment: I am extremely fond of this passage. Tolstoy reveals the hard to tell truth about love that most do not want to hear or even come close to contemplating; it must be grandiose and dramatic, fervent and uber passionate, and a thrill ride of unending emotional hype, stimulation, and volatile exchange, never just basic, simple, easy, and quietly profound in its energy and transcending bond. He also touches on the attainment and understanding of happiness in life which requires a security and willful stability in individual perspective and contentment of purpose. His promotion of the importance of untainted and unhypocritical good will towards his fellow man is also captured elegantly and succinctly by “doing good to people who are not used to such things and doing so without forcing this “good” upon them in an overstep of intent.” Lastly, his point of youth and its hunger, aware or unaware, for more than love, for more than genuine happiness, is presented with the unselfish tenderness and empathy of a saint. It is an undeniable truth that most youthful “old souls” can’t quite accept about themselves and their overriding desire. They seem unable to digest that real happiness and real love might just be too pure, obtainable, and stable, for the premises and constructs they have anchored into their psyche as defining a normal existence.

I would have preferred for Tolstoy to postulate a manner or theory in which these two characters could have worked together to address and resolve the youthful subconscious yearnings (their burden of misunderstood nervous and excitable egocentric energy) of the wife more effectively and profoundly. It would seem that Tolstoy might believe such a transition utterly impossible without the context of further life experience to curb and temper such youthful yearning.


Cojones Grandes (Love vs Sex 239)

Moderate body-size dimorphism isn’t the only anatomical suggestion of promiscuity in our species. The ratio of testicular volume to overall body mass can be used to read the degree of sperm competition in any species. Jared Diamond considers the theory of testis size to be “one of the triumphs of modern physical anthropology.” Like most great ideas, the theory of testis size is simple: species that copulate more often need larger testes, and species in which several males routinely copulate with one ovulating female need even bigger testes.

If a species has cojones grandes, you can bet that males have frequent ejaculations with females that sleep around. Where the females save it for Mr. Right, the males have smaller testes, relative to their overall body mass. The correlation of slutty females with big balled males appears to apply not only to humans and other primates, but to many other mammals, as well as to birds, butterflies, reptiles, and fish.

In gorillas’, winner-take-all approach to mating, males compete to see who gets all the booty, as it were. So, although an adult silverback gorilla weighs in at about four hundred pounds, his penis is just over an inch long, at full mast, and his testicles are the size of kidney beans, though you’d have trouble finding them, as they’re safely tucked up inside his body. A one-hundred-pound bonobo has a penis three times as long as the gorilla’s and testicles the size of chicken eggs. The extra-large, AAA type. In bonobos, since everybody gets some sugar, the competition takes place on the level of the sperm cell, not at the level of the individual male. Still, although almost all bonobos are having sex, given the realities of biological reproduction, each baby bonobo, still has only one biological father.

So the game’s still the same—getting one’s genes into the future—but the field of play is different. With harem-based polygynous systems like the gorilla’s, individual males fight it out before any sex takes place. In sperm competition, the cells fight in there so males don’t have to fight out here. Instead, males can relax around one another, allowing larger group sizes, enhancing cooperation, and avoiding disruption of the social dynamic. This helps explain why no primate living in multimale social groups is monogamous. It just would not work.

As always, natural selection targets the relevant organs and systems for adaptation. Through the generations, male gorillas evolved impressive muscles for their reproductive struggle, while their relatively unimportant genitals dwindled down to the bare minimum needed for uncontested fertilization. Conversely, male chimps, bonobos, and humans had less need for oversized muscles for fighting but evolved larger, more powerful testicles and, in the case of humans, a much more interesting penis.

We can almost hear some of our readers thinking, “But my testicles aren’t the size of chicken eggs!” No, they’re not. But we’re guessing they’re not tiny kidney beans tucked up inside your abdomen, either. Humans fall in the middle ground between gorillas and bonobos on the testicular volume/body-mass scale. Those who argue that our species has been sexually monogamous for millions of years point out that human testicles are smaller than those of chimps and bonobos. Those who challenge this narrative (like us, for example) note that human testicular ratios are far beyond those of the polygynous gorilla or the monogamous gibbon.

So, is the scrotum half-empty or half-full?

Sex at Dawn

Ryan and Jethá          2010



The Contorted, Twisted, and Bastardized Form of “Love”, We have All been Taught to Believe is Ideal (Love vs Sex 237)

Written by Percy Sledge and first recorded in 1966, “When a Man Loves a Woman” hit a cultural nerve. The song shot to the top of both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts. Another version, recorded twenty-five years later by Michael Bolton, also went straight to the top of the charts, and the song now sits at number 54 on Rolling Stone’s list of the five hundred greatest songs of all time. Nothing is more prominent than love and sex in Western media, and “When a Man Loves a Woman” is an example of the message whispered in romantic ears throughout the world.

What does Mr. Sledge have to say about a man’s love for a woman? What are the signs of true masculine love? Copyright restrictions won’t allow us to quote the song’s lyric in full, but most readers know the words by heart anyway. To review, when a man loves a woman:

  • He becomes obsessed and can’t think of anything else.
  • He’ll exchange anything, even the world, for her company.
  • He’s blind to any fault she may have, and will abandon even his closest friend if that friend tries to warn him about her.
  • He’ll spend all his money trying to hold her attention.
  • And last but not least, he’ll sleep in the rain if she tells him to.

We’d like to suggest an alternative title for this song: “When a Man Becomes Pathologically Obsessed and Sacrifices All Self-Respect and Dignity by Making a Complete Ass of Himself (and Losing the Woman Anyway Because Really, Who Wants a Boyfriend Who Sleeps Out in the Rain Because Someone Told Him Too?).”

Sex at Dawn

Ryan and Jethá          2010

The Crux and the Cure of a Destabilized Lover (L vs S 228)

Her first thought was that he had come back because of her; because of her, he had changed his destiny. Now he would no longer be responsible for her; now she was responsible for him. 

The responsibility, she felt, seemed to require more strength than she could muster. 

But all at once she recalled that just before he had appeared at the door of their flat the day before, the church bells had chimed six o’clock. On the day they first met, her shift had ended at six. She saw him sitting there in front of her on the yellow bench and heard the bells in the belfry chime six.

No, it was not superstition, it was a sense of beauty that cured her of her depression and imbued her with a new will to live. The birds of fortuity had alighted once more on her shoulders. There were tears in her eyes, and she was unutterably happy to hear him breathing at her side.

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Milan Kundera  1984

Cribb Comment: The crux; the yielding of responsibility or the retainment of it. We have been lead to believe it must be one or the other, but it is neither. The focus of the individual must shift from one of the two aforementioned options to a more expansive understanding and awareness which naturally includes the union and balancing of both behaviors to establish and maintain a truly healthy and stable psyche. Such a psyche is an absolute necessity for any individual to participate and engage in a nurturing relationship of any sort. Lacking such comprehensive balance, will yield only codependence and though perhaps tolerable relations, also a perpetually destabilizing “union.” Without responsibility or the lack thereof for either individual, the controlling factor and excuse of spoken or even unspoken guilt, is removed permanently from the relationship. As control is progressively relinquished, especially in the nooks and crannies of the innermost chambers of the psyche, love and upper transcendence with flourish.

Fortuities are a grace, a pattern of grace, in which the the undeniable truth of universal beauty presents itself relentlessly to those of continued yearning, who despite whatever inflicted, incurred, accepted, and suffering madness, still retain a tenacious core of the overriding desire to love and be loved in their inherent supreme vulnerability with the most devout resolve imaginable.



Love vs Sex 208 (#30 on Tantric Sex)

For instance, you need to be aware of your tendency to project your own emotions and issues onto others, and to have developed ways of staying with whatever is going on—even when things get tough. Whether you’re crying, angry, fearful or blaming, all these emotions are your own. In order to get through them she suggests that you stay with them, rather than running away from them. It’s a challenge to take responsibility for your own emotions and not to feel either victimized or blaming about anything that comes up. Otherwise, you will end up constantly fighting with and blaming your partner as you attempt Tantric practices together. Tantric techniques can enable you to get to a point where you can treat emotions as pure energy, rather than anything real.

Instead, you can learn to concentrate on feelings and sensations. Emotions are our ego response to the things that happen to us, while our feelings are our sensory experience of the things that are happening to us. Feelings are very much to do with the present, while emotions tend to have roots in the past. Instead of sapping your energy because you’re reliving and recreating old emotional traumas, feelings are fresh and energizing. If you feel you’re getting into an emotional tangle, you can do a ‘reality check’ — concentrate on what’s really going on right now with the person in front of you, rather than what you think is going on.

Relaxing back into the sense of contact and connection between you can help more love to come in, and keep you out of defensive or attacking angry mode with your partner.

Tantric Sex

Cassandra Lorius          1999

Love vs Sex 207 (#29 on Tantric Sex)

I was always frightened of Des. He seemed to exude aggression and apparently his pent-up frustration had occasionally erupted in violence in his relationships.

I avoided working with him on my training course, in spite of the Tantric ethos of trying to step beyond personality issues and connect with the essentially divine being in front of you.

One day I found myself sitting cross-legged in front of Des, to do a fire meditation. As we started deep breathing and visualizing flames in our base chakras, I felt put off by the intensity of his labored breathing. Even his breathing seemed aggressive to me.

‘And as Shiva he should  be following my pattern of breathing!’ I thought. I started to withdraw, feeling intimidated by his overbearing presence.

But then the Tantric adage clicked in my head. ‘It’s all just energy.’ While he might sometimes express it as anger or violence, Des was sitting on a powder-keg of energy. And I’m a powerful person too. The way to meet him on an energy level was not to follow my usual inclination to retreat and make myself smaller, but to manifest my own power.

I breathed deeply into my pelvis, allowing the energy in my base chakra to expand, and ignite, using the images of the flames to help me. Eyes closed, I went inside to get in touch with my own power.

Suddenly the flame caught and I could feel the heat building up around my sitting bones. I opened my eyes and looked directly into Des’s eyes as we both breathed together, our energies alive and suddenly dancing together, all fear and holding back gone.

Tantric Sex

Cassandra Lorius          1999

Cribb Comment:

This Tantric passage ties in very well with the conundrum that dominant females may experience when entering into a relationship or even just the orbit of a dominant male (high drive, stable, aware). This dominant male is not to be confused with the pseudo-dominant male aka “bully” (a destabilized Alpha or Beta male) that our culture has falsely come to associate with supposed dominance. The writer illustrates her own dominance glitch in the unspoken power challenge or biphasic recognition, described above, when she admits feeling intimidated and initiates withdrawal, because Des was refusing to “follow” her breathing pattern. The “powder-keg” that Des sits upon, and that the writer finally acknowledges as pure energy, can also be simply referred to as “high drive” within a given individual. Understanding that high drive energy actually prefers other high drive energy, despite the inherent concerns, skepticism, and fear, brought about by such coupling in both parties, is perhaps the most difficult concept and dynamic for dominants (and especially unstable dominants) to understand about one another. Stable energy seeks to be met or matched, not to obliterate, swallow, or deconstruct.

The last sentence of the passage is exceptionally poignant and pithy. It captures the hope,  intimacy, and union, that awaits us all, if only we will open our eyes and our energy to the dismissing of our own vulnerabilities, so that we may dance fearlessly together…..even with someone as dominant as ourselves.

Cribb          2016

Love vs Sex 202 (#25 on Tantric Sex)

In orgasm we have a glimpse of eternity; letting go into something far bigger and more spacious than our orgasmic gratification. It’s this experience of something vaster that keeps us fixated on sex, striving to repeat the experience. Tantra is the practice that allows you to attain that state without immediately losing it again. It allows you to maintain and extend it.

According to self-styled New Age guru, Barry Long, women and men are prevented from making love to our full potential, because we have not learnt how to make love to consciousness. Loving consciously involves Shiva (the man) receiving the divine energies of Shakti (the woman) in the act of love-making. Tantra teaches ways to make lovemaking more aware, and techniques for assimilating the energies of your partner in love-making.

Tantra changes one’s view of relationships. Couples become less dependent, jealous, or neurotic. They tend to be more harmonious, fun, and energy filled. In the way of Tantra, you also discover that the relationship you seek outside is already within you.

Tantric Sex

Cassandra Lorius          1999