I used to just want a woman’s sexy body.
Later I wanted her intelligent mind, too.
Now, as the mature masculine man in me awakens, there’s something far more precious than her body or even her mind that I covet: her devotional heart.
Here’s my evolution in intimacy with women:
As a teenager, sex dominated my mind and a warm smooth body could easily satisfy. Didn’t matter what thoughts she thought or how deep her connection to heart. The depth of my curiosity literally stopped at skin-deep. All I cared about was what does her skin feel like against mine? What does she smell like? Taste like? Will she press herself passionately up against me? Will she moan? Will she scratch me, bite me, tease me? Will she stick her wet tongue in my ear? And where in the world of her body is that magic little hidden spot I’ve heard so much about that’s supposed to make her heavens shake?
What will happen when our bodies meet?
These were the sensual if shallow depths of my interest in the feminine form as a young man.
This first stage was purely focused on the physical body.
This first stage of body-focus persisted throughout my 20s into my 30s. Many people in our culture live primarily in this first stage throughout their lives. Many masculine men remain stuck on female body infatuation long after their own bodies can even do anything about it. For some feminine women, however, their first-stage focus may be less about a man’s physical body and more about his “body” of material resources. Lest you think this sexist, you may consider that a man experiencing this first-stage of intimate relating won’t really care about a woman’s access to resources, and a first-stage woman can be easily influenced by a man’s.
For my part, I remember struggling in this first stage with my attraction to an early girlfriend when her body began to change from sexy lithe teenager to a more curvaceous young woman. She was an amazing young lady, but as her body changed I lost interest in her – a first-stage reaction.
As my 30s wore on, what a woman thought about started to become far more interesting to me. Who she was in conversation began to matter more. Shallow-minded sexy chics (at least as my arrogance perceived them to be shallow-minded) became less attractive. I started longing for thought-provoking sexy chics, the ones who could parry with me in conversation and perhaps teach me things about the world I didn’t already know. I was still primarily body-focused, but I began to more fully appreciate a woman who could meet me intellectually. I wanted to make love to a woman’s mind almost as much as her body.
This second stage was mind-body focused.
If you’re reading this blog, you probably live mostly in this stage. You may still experience body-focus temptations, but your attraction to mind complements if not overrides most physical attractions. It could be also that women (feminine) experience this differently than men (masculine). Masculine men tend to relate (connect) to the world more through the mind-intellect filter, whereas feminine women relate (connect) more through feeling experiences. I’d love to hear from you about this.
Many people can fake this second-stage experience, at least for a time. After all, “you’re shallow” is no compliment in our world. But when a first-stage person who is pretending (even if unconsciously so) to be a second-stage person has a partner who loses physical allure or access to material resources, the eyes and libido of that first-stage consciousness will start wandering.
Interestingly, I found over and over in this second-stage era that there was no woman who’s mind I could ever fully embrace. I would inevitably encounter something in her thought-world that I would object to: she’s not ambitious enough, worldly enough, kind enough, philosophical enough, smart enough … whatever. She was never enough. These objections would invariably diminish my capacity for true intimacy with her.
For how could I fully be with her when I was resisting how she was being?
Despite that enduring obstacle, my second-stage orientation held that loving a woman complete meant loving her “mind and body.” I was sure this orientation would yield the magic formula for fairy-tale love.
Alas, there was another stage yet to come – a third stage. I’m only now waking up to this third stage, and I’m profoundly hungry for it.
This third stage is body-mind-spirit focused.
It’s about Devotion.
While it certainly encompasses attraction to body and mind, it also transcends them.
I’m not going to pretend to know the experience just yet, for I can’t say I’ve ever been truly devoted to a woman.
I am noticing that as a more mature masculine essence begins to stir in me, an attractive body and mind alone no longer suffice. I want more than just to intertwine myself with her physical and mental worlds; I want to penetrate the depths of her soul. I want not just a warm body and intellectual play … I want her deep devotional heart.
I also want to give her mine.
I’m still learning what this means.
What I do know is that I have finally evolved to a moment in life where my deepest yearning is for the experience of such complete Devotion to the Feminine that my Love both embraces her body and mind but also transcends them.
However, I currently have no feminine partner to engage on this adventure. And there are certainly days when I taste the pungent angst of this yearning as yet unrequited. Sometimes it feels like reaching desperate for a breath underwater.
But let’s see where Life wants to take this.
I’m ready for stage three … so the mature masculine Man in me says.
“Love is freedom, but not total. If love becomes devotion, then it becomes total freedom. It means surrendering yourself completely.” ~ Osho
* props to David Deida for his writing and talks on the stages of intimacy, which I’ve adapted with my own interpretation.
** this blog also partly inspired by an unforgettable conversation about Devotion I had with Mikki Willis, founder of Elevate Films