Copyright 2009 Scholar Island llC
"I lose my respect for the man who can make the mystery of sex the subject of coarse jest, yet, when you speak earnestly and seriously on the subject, is silent."
"And the moral of the story
(Which one hardly ever discusses)
Is that the upper half plans and thinks
While the lower half determines our fate."
"Is it not Life? Is it not the thing?
"Sexual passion is the cause of war and the end of peace, the basis of what is serious, and the aim of the jest, the inexhaustible source of wit, the key to all illusions, and the meaning of all mysterious hints."
-Arthur Schopenhauer 1819
"No doubt it sounds strange to ears schooled by a Foucaltian sensitivity to thins sexual for me to frame an epistemology of ignorance around women's sexuality in general and their orgasms in particular. indeed, it was Michel Foucault who warned that the disciplining practices of the nineteenth century had constructed sex as "a problem of truth": "The truth of sex became something fundamental, useful, or dangerous, precious or formidable; in short, that sex was constituted as a problem of truth. can my investigations of the power dimensions of ignorance concerning women's orgasms not fall prey to a constructed desire for the "truth of sex"?"
Agnotology: The making & Unmaking of Ignorance
When one is in love, one begins by deceiving oneself. And one ends by deceiving others. That is what the world calls a romance."
-Oscar Wilde 1893
"If two people love each other, there can be no happy end to it."
"Sexuality is something like nuclear energy, which may prove amenable to domestication through scruple, but then again, may not."
"We are here on account of sex, though we do not understand its force. there is glory when the sexual force is used creatively when it is open to the magic of the universe."
Beatrice Wood (at age 100)
"Between men and women, it is fun playing chess with the heart."
-Beatrice Wood (at age 100)
"There are several good, protections against temptation, but the surest is cowardice."
"Strung out between romance and pornography it is no longer clear what men and women want to use each other for. And though the disturbance between the sexes-more evident than ever in the media images of carefree happiness and undistracted bodies-is written and spoken about everywhere, there are still very few useful, memorable words about sexuality. The excess of words and images, whether specialist and academic, salacious, or moralistic, and the myriad ways in which they fail to haunt or inform or inspire us, suggest that sexuality is now openly spoken of but everywhere repressed."
Going sane: maps of Happiness
"If love for the man is not deep inside her there, no lovemaking flame will rise."
-Bahauddin (The Father of Rumi)
"The orgasm has replaced the Cross as the focus of longing and the image of fulfillment."
"Woman is unspeakably more wicked than man, also cleverer. Goodness in Women is really nothing but a form of degeneracy."
-Friedrich Nietzsche 1888
"In the end one loves one’s desire and not what is desired."
"The trouble with the internet is that it's replacing masturbation as a leisure activity."
-Patrick Murray (replacing?)
"Brave New World describes a sexual regime that increasingly resembles the one that rules today. A little boy, younger than ten, must visit a psychologist because he does not want to indulge in erotic play with a little girl, as his teachers demand: a situation we seem to be fast approaching. Not only does sex education start earlier and earlier in our schools, but publications, films, and television, programs for ever-younger age groups grow more and more eroticized. It used be that guilt would accompany the first sexual experience of young people, now shame accompanies the lack of such experiences."
Our Culture, what's Left of It
"Instead of fulfilling the promise of infinite orgiastic bliss, sex in the America of the feminine mystique is becoming a strangely joyless national compulsion, if not a contemptuous mockery."
-Betty Freidan, The Feminine Mystique 1963
"Yes, this was love, this ridiculous bouncing of the buttocks, and the wilting of the poor, insignificant, moist little penis. This was the divine love! After all, the moderns were right when they felt contempt for the performance; for it was a performance. It was quite true, as some poets said that the God who created man must have had a sinister sense of humor, creating him a reasonable being, yet forcing him to take this ridiculous posture, and driving him with blind craving for this ridiculous performance.
Lady Chatterley's Lover
"At times, the urge intrudes uninvited; at other times, it deserts the panting lover, and, although desire blazes in the mind, the body is frigid. In this strange way, desire refuses service, not only to the will to procreate, but also to the desire for wantonness; and though for the most part, it solidly opposes the mind's command, at other times it is divided against itself, and, having aroused the mind, it fails to arouse the body."
"Tamed as it may be, sexuality remains one of the demonic forces in human consciousness....Even on the level of simple physical sensation and mood, making love surely resembles having an epileptic fit at least as much as, if not more than, it does eating a meal or conversing with someone."
"The human need for love and sex is made to bear the burden of all our bodily starvation for contact and sensation, all our creative starvation, all our need for social contact, and even our need to find some meaning in our lives."
"Pornography is the attempt to insult sex, to do dirt on it."
"The fantasy pornography consumer is a walking projection of upper-class fears about lower-class men: brutish, animal-like, sexually voracious.:"
"You have to accept the fact that part of the sizzle of sex comes from the danger of sex. You can be overpowered."
(interview in SAN FRANCISCO EXAMINER 17 July 1991)
"What was it about marriage anyway? Even if you loved your husband, there came that inevitable year when fucking him turned as bland as Velveeta cheese: filling, fattening even, but no thrill to the taste buds, no bittersweet edge."
"The allurement that women hold out to men is precisely the allurement that Cape Hatteras holds out to sailors: they are enormously dangerous and hence enormously fascinating. To the average man, doomed to some banal drudgery all his life long, they offer the only grand hazard that he ever encounters. Take them away and his existence would be as flat and secure as that of a moo-cow. Even to the unusual man, the adventurous man, the imaginative and romantic man, they offer the adventure of adventures. Civilization tends to dilute and cheapen all other hazards. Even war has been largely reduced to caution and calculation; already, indeed, it employs almost as many press-agents, letter-openers and generals as soldiers. But the duel of sex continues to be fought in the Berserker manner. Whoso approaches women still faces the immemorial dangers. Civilization has not made them a bit more safe than they were in Solomon's time; they are still inordinately menacing, and hence inordinately provocative, and hence inordinately charming..."
H.L. Mencken (The Incomparable Buzz-Saw...from the Smart Set, May 1919)
The Vintage Mencken gathered by Alistair Cooke
Sex contains all, bodies, souls,
Meanings, proofs, purities, delicacies, results, promulgations,
Songs, commands, health, pride, the maternal mystery,
The seminal milk,
All hopes, benefactions, bestowals, all the passions,
Delights of the earth.’
A Woman waits for Me
"Sex is the last refuge of the miserable."
"Sexual relations can take up the whole of adult life. But if that life were a lot longer, might not staleness stifle the capacity for arousal well before one's physical powers declined.? For there is an enormous difference between the first and the tenth, the hundredth, the thousandth, or the ten-thousandth coitus. Where lies the boundary line beyond which repetition becomes stereotyped, if not comical or even impossible? And once that boundary is crossed, what would become of the erotic relationship between a man and a woman? Would it vanish? Or, on the contrary, would lovers consider the sexual phase of their lives to be the barbaric prehistory of real love? Answering these questions is as easy as imagining the psychology of the inhabitants of an unknown planet.
The notion of love (of great love, of one-and-only love) itself also derives, probably, from the narrow bounds of the time we are granted. If that time were boundless, would Josef be so attached to his deceased wife? We who must die so soon we just don't know."
"The sex drive is now declared to be the most vital mainspring of human behavior. In the name of science, its fullest satisfaction is urged as a necessary condition of man's health and happiness. Sex inhibitions are viewed as the main source of frustrations, mental and physical illness and criminality. Sexual chastity is ridiculed as a prudish superstition. Nuptial loyalty is stigmatized as an antiquated hypocrisy. Father is painted as a jealous tyrant desirous of castrating his sons to prevent incest with their mother. Motherhood is interpreted as a "mommism," wrecking the lives of children. Sons and daughters are depicted as filled with the "complexes" of seduction of their mother and father, respectively. Sexual profligacy and prowess are proudly glamorized....The traditional "child of God" created in God's image is turned into a sexual apparatus powered by sex instinct, preoccupied with sex matters, aspiring for, and dreaming and thinking mainly of, sex relations. Sexualization of human beings has about reached its saturation point....Our civilization has become so preoccupied with sex that it now oozes from all pores of American life."
Dr. Pitirim Sorokin
The American Sex Revolution (1955)
"Abstain from casual sex and particularly avoid sexual intercourse before you get married. This may sound prudish or old-fashioned, but it is a time-tested way by which we demonstrate respect for ourselves and others. Sex is not a game. It gives rise to very real enduring emotional and practical consequences. To ignore this is to debase yourself, and to disregard the significance of human relationships.
If, however, you know someone who has had casual sex, don't self-righteously try to win them over to your own views.
An active sex life within a framework of personal commitment augments the integrity of the people involved and is part of a flourishing life."
-Epictetus a.d. 75
"Women’s Liberation calls it enslavement but the real truth about the sexual revolution is that it has made of sex an almost chaotically limitless and therefore unmanageable realm in the life of women."
The new chastity and other arguments against women’s liberation
’What will happen to sex after Liberation? Frankly, I don’t know. It is a great mystery to all of us."
"We must reckon with the possibility that something in the nature of the sexual instinct itself is unfavorable to the realization of complete satisfaction."
On the Universal tendency to debasement in the Sphere of Love
"Instead of fulfilling the promise of infinite orgiastic bliss, sex in the America of the feminine mystique is becoming strangely joyless national compulsion, if not a contemptuous mockery."
The Feminine Mystique
"I am sure no other civilization, not even the Romans, has showed such a vast proportion of ignominious and degraded nudity, and ugly, squalid dirty sex. Because no other civilization has driven sex into the underworld, and nudity to the W.C."
Pornography and Obscenity 1930
"If your posterior is cute, let it be seen from behind."
"The penis confers with human intelligence and has intelligence itself…and takes its own course…without license of thought by man."
Leonardo da Vinci
"Erection is chiefly caused by scuraum, eringos, cresses, crymon, parsnips, artichokes, turnips, asparagus, candied ginger, acorns bruised to powder and drunk in muscatel, scallion, sea shellfish, etc."
"There can be no doubt about it, sex is basic to security. If you think you fail in that, nothing else can compensate for this inner sense of humiliation . Thank God, at 35 I banished my shame and puritan background learned how to please others and myself."
"I really think that there is a certain type of man who is attracted to politics and that person is suffering from deep and severe sexual identity problems. As Myra McPherson says in her book The Power Lovers, most of our political leaders are ex-high school presidents who couldn’t get it up. I came to believe that that is more true than not, some of the congressmen and senators who are seen as Don Juan’s of the Hill actually have severe sexual problems."
"It was not merely that the sex instinct created a world of its own that was outside the Party’s control and which therefore had to be destroyed if possible. What was more important was that sexual privation induced hysteria, which was desirable because it could be transformed into war-fever and leader-worship….For how could the fear, the hatred, and the lunatic credulity which the Party needed in its members be kept at the right pitch, except by bottling up some powerful instinct and using it as a driving force? The sex impulse was dangerous to the Party, and the Party had turned it to account."
"Sex is the mysticism of materialism and the only possible religion in a materialistic society."
" In particular I may mention Sophocles the poet who was once asked in my presence "How do you feel about love, Sophocles? Are you still capable of it?" to which he replied, "Hush! If you please: to my great delight I have escaped from it, and feel as if I had escaped from a frantic and savage master," I thought then, as I do now, that he spoke wisely. For unquestionably old age brings us profound response and freedom from this and other passions"
Plato (427-347 B.C.)
"Surely the sex business isn’t worth all this damned fuss? I’ve met only a handful of people who cared a biscuit about it."
(on reading Lady Chatterley’s lover)
"BE advised by me, do not come too soon to the climax of your pleasure, but by skilful holding back, reach it gently….Do not, by setting too much sail, leave your mistress behind you; nor let her get too much in front of you. Row together towards the port. Voluptuousness reaches its greatest height when, overcome by it, lover and mistress are overcome at the same time. This ought to be your rule when there is no hurry and you are not compelled by fear of discovery to hasten your furtive pleasures. But if there is any danger in your taking your time, then, bent over the oars, row with all your strength, and press your spurs into the thighs of your steed. Women, let pleasure penetrate even to the marrow of your bones, and let the enjoyment be equally divided between you and your lover. Whisper tender words, murmur softly, and let licentious suggestions sharpen your sweet sport. Do not let too strong a light come into your bedroom. There are in a Beauty a great many things which are enhanced by being seen only in half-light."
"Sex is important! Sex is profound! Sex is funny!"
Sex Tips for Girls
"At the end of the Christian millennium and the century of Freud, sex is still shrouded in mystery. A question mark hangs over every important sexual issue. Despite bitter public controversy and heated private debate, we have no answers. Indeed, we have barely begun to formulate the questions accurately."
Vamps and Tramps
"Vibrators took off at home, as well as in the doctor's surgery. In the US in the 1890s, women could purchase a $5 portable vibrator-'perfect for weekend trips,' ran the advertisement-rather than paying at least $2 a pop for a visit to the physician. Delightfully, the vibrator was the fifth household appliance to be electrified, after the sewing machine, fan, kettle and toaster. And as vibrators became available for home use, the ancient art of physician-prescribed vaginal massage to orgasm slowly became defunct. Male medical hands were increasingly freed to perform other healing tasks. Unfortunately, it's not know precisely how many late-nineteenth-century and early-twentieth-century home vibration kits were sold; however, they were certainly popular enough to feature in many mail-order magazines in the US, the UK and Canada up until the 1920s"
The Story of V
"Opposition is and always will be the best stimulus for great amorous vocations, for with these the part played by instinct is very important. Now, there is no better tonic for the instinct than an attempt to suppress it. This is the reason for the basic aphrodisiac meaning of prohibitions and limitations in love and for the soothing effect of liberty."
Don Juan et le donjuanisme
"Today the emphasis is on sex, and very little on the beauty of sexual relationships. Contemporary books and films portray it like a contest, which is absurd."
"Except for the few years between the invention of the Pill and the discovery of Herpes, sex has always been dangerous.
"The de-eroticization of the world, a companion of its disenchantment, is a complex phenomenon. It seems to result from a combination of causes-our democratic regime and its tendencies toward leveling and self-protection, a reductionist-materialist science that inevitably interprets eros as sex, and the atmosphere generated by the "death of God" and of the subordinate god, Eros. It is summed up in debased and ridiculous fashion when the young women entering Smith College are told that lookism is included among the currently recognized vices along with racism, sexism, and homophobia. Yet Eros begins, sad but true, in preferences founded on ideals of bodily beauty. Nobody serious ever suggested that this is where it ends, but if this essential beginning is suppressed, farewell eros."
Love & Friendship
"By the time you swear you’re his, shivering and sighing…and he vows his passion is infinite, undying…lady, make a note of this: one of you is lying."
"I’ve had moments in bed so beautiful the world could have stopped right there. But then you get up. You go on."
The biblical word ‘yadha’ for "know",. Occurs in the Old Testament 943 times, but it is used in the sexual sense only 15 times.
"I think it extremely likely that on the whole there was, in the nineteenth century West at least…..the usual difference in sexual behavior of a few percentage points."
"No one knows how many sexual anomalies there are, but it is improbable that the number varies greatly from one generation to another."
Dr. Richard Lewinsohn
A History of sexual customs
"On the other hand, the hydraulic theory of sex says that blocking usual outlets will cause sex to manifest itself in deformed, substitutive ways. It is a view so simplistic that it obscures rather than clarifies important questions about social forces and behavior. It is cherished by many people who seek a cynical and leveling rationale to fit their emotional view, They need to feel that appearances, especially of altruism and self-denial, are hoaxes. They live in a land of fantasy and folklore where all monks are lechers; nuns are sluts; censors are secret deviants; prostitutes have better hearts than any housewife; genteel Victorians all had minds like de Sade novels and chased sex in back alleys like crazed goats. This is the realm of paranoia, not fact."
Sexuality & Homosexuality
"On the side of variety, one could make a list to fill a chapter. There are societies where modesty calls for hiding body and face, others where it insists that the male hide only his glans penis; where widows commit suicide, and where women have several husbands; where girls commence coitus at eleven, and where they and their lovers are put to death for pre-marital intercourse; where relatively few women masturbate, and where they do with a reindeer’s leg tendon or with a live mink whose jaws are tied shut; where every male has experienced sodomy at some time in his life, and where one homosexual act may cause ostracism or even execution."
Sexuality & Homosexuality
"Sexual Intercourse began
In nineteen sixty-three’( which was rather late for me)
Between the end of the Chatterley ban
And the Beatle’s first LP.
ATHENS-Greeks are cooing over one of their most exciting archaeological finds: a 2,000 year-old brothel with all manner of sex toys.
Unearthed beneath the Roman agora in the otherwise uninteresting center of Salonika, the discovery has become the cause of much ecstasy among experts. Those who have seen it say the sex shop is "the find of the century."
"This is, without doubt, the oldest home of the oldest profession in the world," said Polyxeni Valeni, who headed the excavation.
"It’s really rather spectacular."
(Scripps Howard News Service)
"Men are weak and constantly need reassurance, so now that they fail to find adulation in the opposite sex, they’re turning to each other. Less and less do men need women, More and more do gentlemen prefer gentlemen."
"Masturbation, to the Greeks, was not a vice but a safety valve, and there are numerous literary references to it….
Miletus, a wealthy commercial city on the coast of Asia Minor, was the manufacturing and exporting center of what the Greeks called the olisobs, and later generations, less euphoniously, the dildo….This imitation penis appears in Greek times to have been made either of wood or of padded leather and had to be liberally anointed with olive oil before use. Among the literary relics of the third century B.C., there is a short play consisting of a dialogue between two young women, Metro and Coritto, which begins with Metro trying to borrow Coritto’s dildo. Coritto, unfortunately, has lent it to someone else, who has in turn lent it to another friend."
"There is no place for it in the Party…promiscuity in sexual matters is bourgeois, it is a sign of degeneration….and it wastes the health and strength of the young."
Reminiscences of Lenin (1934)
"The liberation movement, shook society to its foundations and provoked the reexamination of all human ties. It could not therefore ignore existing forms of sexual relations: marriage, divorce, prostitution, childbirth, free love, and other questions, large and small, aroused the liveliest debate….The old beliefs, the time-honored foundations, the customary forms are cracking up. They have lost their meaning and force. Thanks to the triumph of political reaction, new foundations and renovated forms have not yet emerged and people have lost their way."
(Essay "Sexual Bacchanalia and Sexual Violence: Feast During times of Plague"
"The thirst for something unusual, for extra stimulation, has seized people of all social ranks. Not only the sated representatives of the propertied classes, who have always indulged in various sexual perversions, but peasants and workers now also participate in raping women and girls….The rapists have been nursed on the blood and violence of recent years. They are the products of a troubled society, whose former ideals and principles have crumbled but which are forbidden to fashion new conditions for correct public life….When civic and political life cease and healthy forward movement s tops, violence, perversions the dark side of human nature rise to the surface. Without healthy public life and civic freedom there is only stagnation , living for the moment, the arbitrary imposition of authority and violence."
N. Zhbankov (Russian essayist 1908)
"The life instinct, or sexual instinct, demands activity of a kind that, in contrast to our current mode of activity, can only be called play. The life instinct also demands a union with others and with the world around us based not on anxiety and aggression but on narcissism and erotic exuberance."
Norman O. Brown
"In sex it is the attitude of experiencing sexual desire and passion as one aspect of interpersonal relationships. Separating sex from the rest of self, indeed, is no more tenable than to isolate one’s larynx and speak of " my vocal cords wanting to talk with my friend."
"No mammal matches our incessant eroticism. None, except perhaps dolphins, are so sexually active and excitable all through the year. Certainly none other mates during masturbation, pregnancy, and lactation, before fertility begins and after it fades. None choose oral-genital or anal-genital intercourse; none regularly masturbate to orgasm; none, despite myths to the contrary, show exclusive homo-sexuality as adults. By comparison, rabbits and baboons are abstentious."
Napoleons Glands and other Ventures in Biohistory
"Sex is inconvenient, time-consuming, energy draining and irrelevant…..Erotic energy is just life energy and is quickly worked off if you are doing interesting, absorbing things….If genital tensions persist, you can still masturbate. Isn’t that a lot easier anyway? This is not a call of celibacy but for an acceptance of celibacy as an alternative preferable to the degradation of most male-female sexual relationships."
The idea is that a complex fabric of electronic sensors could be worn over the sex organs-a washable or disposable "dick sleeve" for Him, perhaps a ‘data bikini for Her-and used to digitize sensual touching."
"High Tech Sex,
Marie Claire ,April 1993
"Perhaps sex is just the ghost of freedom-but, until we have Utopia, it can speak eloquently of what the heart desires."
Sexing the Millenium
"Will there be sex after liberation?"
"I don’t see much of Alfred any more since he got so interested in sex."
Mrs. Alfred Kinsey
"The world’s books get written, its pictures painted, its statues modeled, its symphonies composed, by people who are free from the otherwise universal dominion of the tyranny of sex."
George Bernard Shaw
"Sex is. There is nothing more to be done about it. Sex builds no roads, writes no novels, and sex certainly gives no meaning to anything but life itself."
"We made civilization in order to impress our girlfriends."
Sex is the biggest nothing of all time
"There is never any real sex in romance; what is more, there is very little, and that of very crude kind, in ninety-nine hundredths of our married life."
George Bernard Shaw
"What do I know of sex? I’m a married man."
"When I consider the absurd titillations of love, the brainless motions it excites, the countenance inflamed with fury and cruelty doings its sweetest effects; the grave, solemn, entranced air in an action downright silly, the supreme moment…bathed, like pain, in sighing and fainting-I then believe, with Plato, that the gods made men for their sport."
"Sex lies at the root of life, and we can never learn to reverence life until we know how to understand sex."
Studies in the Psychology of Sex 1936
"We’re still a sexophobic society, afraid of the wrong things for the wrong reasons."
Dr. Mary S. Calderone
"Sex should be put in its proper place. It should be exalted and deified."
"When a man tells me he’s run out of steam in the sex department, I’ll tell him, ‘count your blessings; you’ve escaped from the clutches of a cruel tyrant. Enjoy!"
Richard J. Needham
"Traditionally, sex has been a very private, secretive activity. Herein perhaps lies its powerful force for uniting people in a strong bond. As we make sex less secretive, we may rob it of its power to hold men and women together."
"There is hardly anyone whose sexual life, if it were broadcast, would not fill the world at large with surprise and horror."
W. Somerset Maugham
"Sexual fascism is a condition under which our sexual energy is sublimated for us by the automatic machinery of piety and drudgery-a machine set in motion by the ruling elite to co-opt biological energy."
Monica Sjoo & Barbara Mor
The Cosmic Mother
"The popular morality is now a wasteland. It is littered with the debris of broken convictions. A new concept is emerging, of sexual relationships as a source of pleasure."
Professor George Carstairs
"Without shame the man I like knows and
avows the deliciousness of his sex,
Without shame the woman I like knows
And avows hers."
Few men in patriarchy are perceptive enough to realize that they have themselves lost a great deal, including the power of pleasures of sex. Men have mutilated their own sexuality, along with trying to mutilate women’s . Ejaculation is not necessarily the same as orgasm."
Monica Sjoo & Barbara Mor
The Great Cosmic Mother
"Significantly, Eve’s punishment for her "sin" consists of patriarchal marriage. Her desire must be only for her husband, she must leave her Garden and follow him over the barren male-ordered earth, condemned to unwanted pregnancies and painful childbirth. In other words, patrilocal marriage, in which she is isolated from the women’s collective and deprived of her ancient knowledge of herbal contraception and narcotics used for painless labor. She is no longer priestess and midwife to the Goddess. She will bear children bitterly and they will "belong" to the man. She must also passively make love to Adam on her back, he enacting the male Sky Father over meek female Earth. She must play the role of "corrupt matter" chained to a husband forever striving to "free" his immortal spirit from her."
Monica Sjoo & Barbara Mor
"In fact, Puritan controls were more praised than practiced. Geneva was full of forced marriages and bastards, and Calvin’ own daughter and sister-in-law were caught in adultery. The elaborate and severe sexual regulations were so repellent to many people in England that there were few prosecutions and fewer convictions. Rape, incest, fornication and homosexuality went on unabated. In the American colonies, there were "illegitimacy, premarital and extramarital sex, bestiality and homosexuality. Attempts to enforce the death penalty for adultery failed after a few decades, and it was removed from the books. The American Puritans tried to blame the sexual lapses in their utopia on newer arrivals: their realm was now a dumping ground not only for old world utopians and zealots but for criminals and zealots of all kinds. In 1642 Governor William Bradford of Plymouth complained that although sins were nowhere more severely punished than in his Colony "all of this could not suppress the breaking out of sundrie notorious sins….especially drunkenness and unclainees; not only incontinencie between person unmarried…but that which is even worse, even sodomie and bugerie (things fearful to name) have brook forth in this land, oftener than once." Cotton Mather reassures us of the Colonial sexual imagination by telling of a man considered saintly by his community until his son caught him "hideously conversing with a sow."
Sexuality & Homosexuality
"I regard sex as the central problem of life."
Studies in the Psychology of Sex
"The man experiences the highest unfolding of his creative powers not through asceticism, but through sexual happiness."
Mathilda von Kemnitz
"For many men the denial of dependency on their mother is repeated in their subsequent relationships, sometimes by an absence of any sexual interest in women, sometimes by a pattern of loving and leaving them."
"In fact, men are outliving their usefulness. All you need are sperm banks to keep the species going, and those are coming along now. Most men are rotten lovers, women say, so there’s not much loss in replacing sex with science."
Robert James Waller
The Bridges of Madison County
"Sex for many has become a sorry business, a mechanical release involving neither discovery nor triumph, stressing human isolation more disheartingly than ever before."
The Female Eunuch
"Taken together, the evidence so far suggests that no matter the hormones and genitals and arousal and erections and lubrications and all of the preparations for orgasm, unless we literally think ourselves to orgasm, it can't happen. The limbic brain, which integrates and regulates not only feelings of pleasure and emotions but also brain stem-derived primitive urges, is in charge."
Joann Ellison Rodger
Sex : A Natural History
"The thing that takes up the least amount of time and causes the most amount of trouble is Sex."
"….At the beginning of this century, when Freud published his theory that all of life consisted only of sex, everyone was horrified to hear this fact announced openly, even though everyone had already know it for ages."
" Sexual orthodoxy preserved not only it Athanasian Creed, but also its Grand Inquisitor. ‘ I believe in one heterosexual Love, monogamous and indissoluble. And I believe in Respectability. And above all in Silence.’ Against the heretics who will not accept this profession of sexual faith, the Grand Inquisitors are permanently at war. At the beginning of last century, English Catholics and Jews had no political rights; atheists were expelled from English universities; blasphemers were severely punished. To-day a man is free to have any or no religion; about the Established Church and its divinities he can say almost anything he likes. But woe to him if he deviates from the narrow path of sexual orthodoxy!
"We want to make it clear from the start, we aren't a 'family magazine'....We enjoy mixing up cocktails and an hors d'oeuvre for two, putting a little mood music on the phonograph and inviting in a female for a quiet discussion on Picasso, Nietzsche, jazz, sex."
Hugh Hefner (First Playboy Mag)
"The most successful Internet porn sites and films are those
that discover new ways to humiliate and inflict cruelty on women. In the Web
Slutbus, women are lured into a van, offered money for sex, filmed having sex, and then dumped on the side of the road. Money is held out toward the woman as the van pulls away. She is always left without payment. The message is clear. Women are compliant sex machines. They are good only for sex. And they are not worth paying for their services.
"The Mission?" the slutbus.com Web site asks. "Pick up the hottest girls we find. and get them to let us fuck them & cum in their pretty little faces all while videotaping the whole thing."
"The Fun?" the site goes on. "Treating these slutty bitches like they deserve to be treated.....with a slam bam tank ya ma'[am & a swift kick in the ass! What? You thought we would pay these sluts? Haha-hahaha. Think again!"
Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle
"Sex as we now think of it may soon be dead"
"Celibacy is exhausting."
-Beatrice Wood (at age 100)
"I've discovered that I don't need no damn Viagra."
-Carlos Santana (after his split with the former Mrs Santana)
"Mrs. Grundy, in a word, is the only deity officially recognized by the English State. Men are free not to worship the God of Anglicanism; but the law compels them to bow down before the divine Grundy."
"We are a revolutionary homosexual group of men and women formed with the realization that complete liberation of all people cannot come about unless existing social institutions are abolished. We reject society's attempt to impose sexual roles and definitions of our nature."
(1970s Gay Liberation Front manifesto)
"I calculated that since becoming sexually active in 1973, I had racked up more than three thousand different sex partners in bathhouses, back rooms, meat racks, and tearooms. As a consequence, I also had the following sexually transmitted diseases, many more than once: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, hepatitis non-A/non-B; herpes simplex types I and II: venereal warts amoebiasis and salmonella: syphilis: gonorrhea: nonspecific arthritis, chlamydeous; cytomegaloviurs and Epstein-Barr virus mononucleosis, and eventually cryptosporidosis"
Michael Callen ( died of AIDS)
"Gay liberation means sexual freedom. And sexual freedom means more sex , better sex, sex in the bushes, in the toilets, in the baths, sex without love, sex with-out harassment, sex at home and sex in the streets."
"We have made sex the cornerstone of gay liberation and gay culture, and it has killed us."
"Judaism was the first religion to insist that sex be confined to marital relations. The Torah excoriates homosexual acts, calling them an "abomination," a term reserved for the graves offenses: idolatry, human sacrifice, and ritual prostitution. The Torah warned Jews that if they followed the customs of the Canaanites, sodomy among, the holy land they were about to inherit would "vomit them out."*
A Jewish Conservative Looks at Pagan America
*Homosexual Jews are now in the open from Hollywood to Israel
"It is impossible for Judaism to make peace with homosexuality."
"There is no mention of homosexual sex in the four Gospels. Not a word."
Sacred Origins Of Profound Things
"So what does the Bible really say about homosexuality? Very little, really."
"They (the homosexuals) are the best among the boys and among men because they are the most valiant of them. This is strikingly demonstrated by the fact that, after growing up, they-and they alone-are fit for ruling the state."
(the following taken from The Other Face of Love by Raymond De Becker)
....The most interesting problem, however, remains that of the Hebrews, whose anti-homosexuality taboo has been inherited by the Christian West.
The situation does not seem to have been particularly clear before the Babylonian captivity, about the seventh century B.C. It is possible that the Hebrews regarded homosexuality as originating from Canaan and that their nationalist feeling, wishing to remain a state of segregation, rejected foreign customs and ways of life at a very early stage, However, neither the Code of Alliance nor the Book of Deuteronomy regarded it as a crime. In the same way, the male prostitutes, who were called Kelebites, or 'Dogs," had a house within the walls of the temple of Jerusalem, as well as in other local sanctuaries, until the time of King Josiah; their function was an integral part of the Jewish religion (II KIngs 23;7), We have to go back to Leviticus, which comes earlier, to discover an edict about a man should not " lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman." Both of them have committed an abomination," says the text, "they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon the." (Lev. 20;13) One can however only assess the significance of this ban by remembering that it is included without any particular emphasis, in a long list of other prohibitions. Thus in the same chapter of Leviticus the following are condemned to death: "everyone that curseth his father or his mother"; the man that committeth adultery with another man's wife" (the adulteress herself is also condemned); the man "that lieth with his father's wife," his daughter-in-law, or his mother; or "if a man lie with a best." etc.
All these sins are regarded on the same footing and from the very severity of the punishments inflicted upon those who committed them, one must infer that such acts occurred frequently among the Hebrews of the period. The most curious fact is that many of these prohibitions are justified by the fact that the guilty party "hath uncovered the nakedness" of his partner. An obsession with nakedness seems to have been fundamental in the development of taboos among the Hebrews. Again in Leviticus (18:6-19), there are no fewer than a dozen prohibitions referring exclusively to nakedness, It is forbidden to uncover the nakedness of one's father and mother, one's aunt, sister, granddaughter, uncle, sister-in-law, brother, and of any woman "having her sickness," Genesis (9:18-25) already has told how, Noah, having drunk wine, "uncovered" himself and cursed Canaan because Ham had not covered him and had only told his brothers who, in order to cover up their father with his garment, walked backward and averted their faces so that they would not see him in this state. Such anxiety is rare and no doubt pathological.
It is however impossible to understand the significance of Jewish legislation on sexual matters without taking into consideration this anxiety and obsession which form the background to it. The question is all the more interesting from our angle because it is precisely to the Canaanites that the Jews attribute the introduction of religious sodomy into the temple of Jerusalem, an innovation which dated from the time of the earliest kings and continued until the reform of Josiah (640-609 B.C.). In this instance also the ambiguous nature of legislation at this period is clearly revealed: Sodomy carried out with a boy of less than nine years and one day was no longer considered a sexual crime and, instead of being punished by death, in the same way as sodomy with an adult, it led only to flagellation. In the same way, although the taboo relating to nakedness only applied in the case of boys and not girls, there was no law in existence that condemned female homosexuality. It was a long time before it was considered unsuitable for a Lesbian to marry a priest and a tardy order laid down disciplinary punishments, which were moreover light and rarely applied, for female homosexuality. These inconsistencies show to what extent Judaic legislation in this matter obeyed criteria unconnected with true sexuality."....
Raymond De Becker
The Other Face of Love
"Homosexuality has been more or less accepted in about two-thirds of human societies at some time or other, and it has occasionally concerned large sections of the population. For long it was tolerated even by the Catholic Church: in `1102 Saint Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, demanded that the punishment for it should be moderate because 'this sin has been so public that hardly anyone has blushed for it and many, therefore, have plunged into it without realizing its gravity.' The crusading kind Richard the Lionheart was no less pious because of his sexual preferences. The Church was originally more concerned with stopping its priests having sexual relations with women; when it waged a campaign against that, homosexuality became even more common, especially in monasteries, where Saint Alred of Rivaulx exalted it as a way of discovering divine love.
It was only in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries that a mass repression of homosexuality began in Europe, as part of a campaign against heresies of all sorts, which developed into the terror of the Inquisition. This is the second phase. Penances were no longer judged to be enough: in 1260 France began the persecution by establishing the penalty of amputation of the testicles for the first offence, of the penis for the second and death by burning for the third. Hitler's attempts to exterminate all homosexuals along with the Jews was the culmination of that story. Persecution made homosexuality no longer conservative, but dangerous and clandestine. 'Away with hypocrisy. Discreet debauchery means little to me. I want to enjoy every thing in broad daylight.' So wrote the poet Abu Nawas (747-814), praising masturbation. But openness had ceased to be possible. Oscar Wilde maintained that if everyone expressed their desires openly and freely, the world would be rejuvenated , but it was unlikely to happen, because even the bravest were afraid of admitting what they were really like; so, given that persecution of nonconformity was the rule, he advocated, as the second-best course, that people should discover the satisfactions of pretending and concealing, acting a part and making a fool of oppressors and critics. Genet argued that was no point in trying to be oneself because it was impossible to know when one was truly authentic. Dominique Fernandez added that if there was no discrimination against homosexuals, he would be delighted as a lover of liberty, but he would lose much of the pleasure has in being a homosexual, which for him, means being a pariah, reinforcing his sense of being different from other by being interested in maters which cannot be discussed openly: 'Sex, ' he says, 'is not what interests me most in homosexuality,' and, as a novelist, he cannot envisage writing about happy homosexuals. Candor and secretiveness thus emerged as equally balanced competitors, and desire as the accomplice of the forbidden. The thrill of heterosexual adultery, as its latest Cambridge analysts have emphasized, also comes to a considerable extent from secrecy and risk. It is too simple to assume that personal relations would be trouble-free if everyone were candid, even if everyone could be candid; something more is required, namely a desire to understand what one is being candidly told."
An Intimate History of Humanity
"In spite of misleading English translations which may imply the contrary, the word "homosexual" does not occur in the Bible, no extant text or manuscript, Hebrew, Greek, Syrian or Aramaic, contains such a word. In fact none of these languages ever contained a word corresponding to the English "homosexual" nor did any language have such a term before the late nineteenth century."
Christianity, Social Tolerance and Homosexuality
"He is completely heterosexual. That is something he discovered. It was the
acting-out situations where things took place. It wasn't a constant thing.
-Rev. Tim Ralph of Larkspur, one of the ministers supervising Ted Haggard's "restoration" program, talking to the Denver Post about Haggard's progress."
"Rockdale Country, Georgia, is a quiet upper-middle class suburb about 20 miles outside of Atlanta. The schools there are some of the best in the state, and the annual fair draws large crowds to its church choir nights and beauty pageants. some natives of Rockland country have even become quite famous, like actresses Dakota Fanning and Holly hunter. according to the county's website, this is a "family-friendly' community that is appealing to parents who want a safe, wholesome and progressive environment in which to raise their children. in short, this is probably not the place you imagine when you think of a syphilis epidemic.
but in 1996, very young teenagers started arriving at Rockdale county health facilities infected with syphilis and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). When officials began hearing sordid tales from teenagers in middle and high school who participated in group sex, it became obvious that something strange was afoot. As Georgia's director of public health, Kathleen Toomey, told the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, "What lit this up for us (was that) syphilis had occurred in a community where you never see syphilis....it allowed us to be aware of the high-risk behaviors of these teens in Rockdale. Syphilis is an extremely rare disease in the children of the upper-middle class, yet there were 17 cases of this one sexual pathogen alone, and many more cases of other STDs.
Some of the students of Rockdale County had accumulated dozens of partners. The epidemic, when it was discovered, made a big impression on the adults: "by the time the investigation concluded, seasoned public health investigators trained not to be judgmental would be startled by what they found. There were 14-year-olds who had had up to 50 sex partners, sixth-graders competing for the sexual attention of high school students, girls in sexual scenes with three boys at once. In one case....a girl at a part with 30 to 40 teens volunteered to have sex with all the boys there-and did. 'My heart dropped,' (Peggy) Cooper a counselor at one of the middle schools involved said. 'I felt nauseated. I wanted to cry."
Nicholas A. Christakis, MD. PhD & James H. Fowler, PhD
Connected: The Surprising Power of our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives
"For example, some people use the internet primarily to increase the number of different people they can have sex with. In turn, this can increase the risk of sexually transmitted diseases, and there have been a number of outbreaks related to internet use. In a paper entitled "Tracing a Syphilis Outbreak Through Cyberspace," a set of public health physicians in San Francisco documented that if you found your partner online, you were over three times more likely to get an STD from them than if you found your partner the old-fashioned way."
Nicholas A. Christakis M.D. PhD & James H. Fowler, PhD
Connected: The Surprising Power of our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives
"While some people take their delusions online, others use the internet to leave their real experiences behind. In virtual worlds, it is possible for people to have a "second Life" and interact without real-world constraints. Physically disabled people might have able-bodied avatars, or men might pretend to be women and experiment with social roles in a way that was simply not possible before the internet existed. These are indeed novel social forms and not merely modifications of existing types of social network interactions and not merely modifications of existing types of social network interactions.
and these new forms can blur the lines between the real and the virtual world. In one online game, a 43-year-old Japanese woman was married to a 33-year-old office worker whom she did not know personally. The game was proceeding normally when suddenly he droved her without warning. Although the marriage was virtual and purely imaginary, she became so angry that she used information she had about him to kill his avatar. She had not plotted any revenge in the real world; still, she was arrested by real police officers and later faced a real penalty of up to five years in prison and a real $5,000 fine for her actions online.
even weirder was the following sequence of events. Amy Taylor, then 23, met her husband, David Pollard, then 35, in an internet chat room in 2003. They were married in real life in 2005, but had an extremely lavish, parallel wedding in Second Life. after their wedding, Taylor caught her husband's avatar having virtual sex with the avatar of another woman, playing the part of a prostitute. She had been suspicious for a while, and in a surreal twist, had hired a virtual detective agency to track his online activities. "he never did anything in real life," she admitted, "but I had my suspicions about what he was doing in Second Life." In her (real) divorce filings, Taylor described her husband's activities as "committing adultery." Pollard admitted to having had an online relationship but denied any (real) wrongdoing. For her part, Taylor was reported to be in a new relationship with a man she subsequently met playing World of Warcraft."
Nicholas A. Christakis M.D. PhD & James H. Fowler, PhD
Connected: The Surprising power of our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives
"Some people discover Jesus and want to spread the word. I discovered orgasms and want to spread the word."
Book: "Journey's & Arrivals: On Being Gay and Jewish" by Lev Raphael
Book: "Where Sex meets Addiction" by Susan Cheever
Book: "Foreign Babes in Beijing: Behind the Scenes of a New China" by Rachel DeWoskin
Book: "The Uncensored Bible: The Bawdy and Naughty Bits of the Good Book" by John Kaltner, Steven L. McKenzie and Joel Kilpatrick ED NOTE* The funniest Bible Scholars ever
Book: "The Other Face of Love" by Raymond De Becker
Book: "Queer Pulp" by Susan Stryker
Book: "Improper Bostonians: Lesbian and Gay History from the Puritans to Playland" compiled by the History Project
Book: "Men In Love: Male Homosexualities from Ganymede to Batman" by Vitorio Lingardi
Book: "On the Nature of Things Erotic " by F. Gonzalez-Crussi M.D.
Book: "The God of Ecstasy: Sex Roles and the Madness of Dionysus" by Arthur Evans
Book: "A Natural History of Sex: The Ecology and Evolution of Mating Behavior" by Adrian Forsyth
Book: "Sex, Time & Power: How Women's Sexuality Shaped Human Evolution" by Leonard Shalain
Book: "History of Courting" by E.S. Turner
Book: "A Mind of Its Own: A Cultural History of the Penis" by David M. Friedman
Book: "The Breast Book: Attitude, Perception, Envy and Etiquette" by M. Spiegel & L. Sebesta
Book: "The Wandering Womb: A Cultural History of Outrageous Beliefs About Women" by Lana Thompson
Book: "A History of Celibacy: From Athena to Elizabeth I, Leonardo da Vince, Florence Nightingale, Ghandi and Cher" by Elizabeth Abbott
Book: "Sexopedia: Everything You Wanted to Know..." by Anne Hooper
Book: "Watching Sex: How Men Really Respond to Pornography" by David Lofus
Book: "Sexual Intelligence: By Kim Cattrall
Book: "O: The Intimate History of the Orgasm" by Jonathan Margolis
Book: "Harmful To Minors" by Judith Levine
Book: "The Secret Lives of Girls: What Good Girls Really Do-Sex Play, Aggression, and Their Guilt" by Sharon Lamb
Book: "A Return To Modesty: Discovering the Lost Virtue" Wendy Shalit
Book: "Smut: A Sex Industry Insider (and concerned Father) Says Enough is Enough" by Gil Reavill
Book: "Everything You Know About Love And Sex Is Wrong: Twenty-Five Relationship Myths Redefined to Achieve Happiness and Fulfillment in Your Intimate Life" by Pepper Schwartz
Book: "Western Sexuality..Ed by P. Aries & A. Bejin
Book: "Hooking UP" by Tom Wolfe
Book: "Sex Talk" by James Wolfe (collection of ribald, raunchy and provocative Quotations)
Book: "Good Vibrations. The New Complete Guide to Vibrators…Joani Blank
Book: "The Technology of Orgasm" by Rachel P. Maines
Book: "Immaculate Contraception: The Extraordinary Story of Birth Control from the First Fumblings to the Present Day" by Emma Dickens
Book: "The Battle of the Sexes" by John Sparks
Book: "The Mating Game: In Search of the Meaning of Sex" by John Gribbin & Jeremy Cherfas
Book: "Sex: A Natural History" by Joann Ellison Rodger
Book: "The Naughty Bits: The Steamiest (and Most Scandalous) Sex Scenes from the World's Greatest Books" by Jack Murmighan
Book: "Sex in Nature" by De Ropp
Book: "Sexual Selections: What We Can and Can't Learn About Sex from Animals" by Mariene Zuk
Book: "The Sexual Life of Catherine M" by Catherine Milet
Book: "Solitary Sex: A Cultural History of Masturbation" by Thomas W. Laqueur
Book: "A History of Celibacy" by Elizabeth Abbott
Book: "Love in the Ancient World" by Christopher Miles
Book: "The Cradle of Erotica" by Allen Edwardes
Book: "Love and Desire: Photoworks" by William A. Ewing
Book: "Erotica Universalis" by Gilles Neret
Book: "The Mammoth Book Of Historical Erotica" Ed. by Maxim Jakubowski
Book: "The "Girl Problem" Female Sexual Delinquency in New York, 1900-1930" by Ruth M. Alexander
Book: "Courtesans: Money, Sex, and Fame in the Nineteenth Century" by Katie Hickman
Book: "Cad: Confessions of a Toxic Bachelor" by Rick Marin
Book: "Sex,Crimes and Misdemeanors" by James Morton
Book: "Love, Lust, Desire" Masterpieces of Erotic Photography for Couples" by Michelle Olley
Book: "ReReading Sex: Battles over Sexual Knowledge and Suppression in Nineteenth-Century America" by Helen Lefkowitz Horowitz
Book: "Kamasutra" by Vatsayana Mallanaga
Book: "Death Rides a Camel" by Allen Edwardes
Book: "Erotica Judaica" by Allen Edwardes
Book: "Geisha Secrets: A Pillow Book for Lovers"
Book: "Ultimate Sex" by Anne Hooper
Book: "The Science of Orgasm" by Carlos Beyer-Flores & Beverly Whipple
Book: "The Naughty Bits: The Steamiest (and most Scandalous) Sex Scenes from the World's Greatest Books: by Jack Murnighan
Book: "Great Sexual Scandals: 4,000 Years of Debauchery" by Susan Crosland
Book: "The Bedside Kama Sutra" by Linda Sonntag
Book: "The Pop-Up Kama Sutra" by R. Burton & F.F. Arbuthnot
Book: "The Art Of Lovemaking: An Illustrated Tribute" by James A. Haught
Book: "The Century of Sex: Playboy's History of the Sexual Revolution 1900-1999" by James R. Petersen
Book: "Satyricon USA: A Journey Across the New Sexual Frontier" by Eurydice
Book: "Love in the Ancient World" by Christopher Miles & J.J. Norwich
Book: "The Worm in the Bud: The World of Victorian Sexuality" by Ronald Pearsall
Book: "sexualia: From Prehistory to Cyberspace" by Sabine Hesemann
Book: "Sex Crimes: From Renaissance to Enlightenment" by William Naphy
Book: "A History of Orgies" by Burgo Partridge
Book: "Roman Sex" by John R. Clarke
Book: "The Invention Of Pornography: Obscenity and the Origins of Modernity, 1500-1800 Ed. by Lynn Hunt
Book: "Political Inversions: Homosexuality, Fascism, and the Modernist imaginary" by Andrew Hewitt
Book: "How the Homosexuals Saved Civilization: The True and Heroic Story of How Gay Men Shaped the Modern World" by Cathy Crimmins
Book: "Delta of Venus: Erotica" by Anais Nin
Book: The Invention of Pornography: Obscenity and the Origins of Modernity, 1500-1800. Ed. by Lynn Hunt
Book: "Homosexual Autobiography From John Addington Symonds to Paul Monette." by Paul Robinson
Book: "Born to be Gay: A History of Homosexuality" by William Naphy
Book: "Masturbation: The History of a Great Terror" by Jean Stengers et al
Book: "Seduction Through The Ages" by Linda Sonntag
Book: "Peninsula Of Lies: A True Story of Mysterious Birth and Taboo Love" by Edward Ball
Book: "Three In Love: Ménages a Trois from Ancient to Modern Times" by Barbara Foster et al.
Book: "Literature Suppressed On Sexual Grounds: Banned Books" by Dawn B. Sova
Book: "The Encyclopedia of Unusual Sex Practices" by Brenda Love
Book: "Virgin: The Untouched History" by Hanna Blank
Book: "The Secret History of Western Sexual Mysticism: Sacred Practices and Spiritual Marriage" by Arthur Versluis
Book: "Sin in the Second City: Madams, Ministers, Playboys, and The Battle for America's Soul" by Karen Abbott
Book: "The Humble Little Condom: A History" by aine Collier
"What is love? A breeze rustling amid the sweetbriar...a
golden glow in the blood."
"Love is the final end of the world's history, the Amen of the Universe."
-Novalis ,Hymns and Thoughts on Religion
"This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you."
"How does one attain this quality of love? Anything you do will only make it forced, cultivated and therefore phony, for love cannot be forced. There is nothing you can do. But there is something you can drop. Observe the marvelous change that comes over you the moment you stop seeing people as good and bad, as saints and sinners and begin to see them as unaware and ignorant. You must drop your false belief that people can sin in awareness. No one can sin in the light of awareness. Sin occurs, not, as we mistakenly think, in malice, but in ignorance. "Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing." To see this is to acquire the indiscriminate quality one so admires in the rose, the lamp and the tree."
Anthony De Mello S.J.
The Way To Love The last meditations
"The Book of Life begins with a man and a woman in a garden. It ends with Revelations."
"But to see her
was to love her,
love but her,
and love her
"Is there more? More than Love and Death? Then tell me its name!"
"Need I tell you the following: love is a scarce and inestimable treasure that is appalling to lose. that is rudimentary human wisdom, the stuff of every civilization's literature and poetry and psalms for thousands of years...."
"Love is not love until love's vulnerable."
"Love is what you've been through with somebody."
-James Thurber (1894-1961)
"To love someone
means to see him as
"If I know
what love is,
it is because
"We cease loving ourselves if no one loves us."
-Germaine De Stael
"When we boldly seek love, love reveals itself to us.
and we end up attracting more love.
If one person loves us, everyone loves us."
"In our life there is a single color, as on an artist's palette, which provides the meaning of life and art. It is the color of love."
"One also has to find out for oneself what love is. That word is one of the most loaded of words; everybody uses it and its usage ranges from the most cunning to the most simple. But what is it actually? What is the state of the heart and the mind that loves? Is love pleasure? Please do ask these questions of yourself. Is love desire? If it is pleasure, then with it must go pain. If pleasure and pain are associated with love, then it is obviously not love. "
"There is a land of the living and land of the dead. The bridge is love ; the only truth, the only survival. "
The Bridge of San Luis Rey
"Of love we may expect anything….Our inner-wealth or poverty is in proportion to our vision. Love wipes the mirror clean. There can be no broadening of one’s vision without a corresponding leap of love."
Love and How it gets that Way
"One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life: That word is love."
Sophocles (496?-406 BCE)
"One must learn to love oneself....with a wholesome and healthy love, so that one can bear to be with oneself and need not roam."
"In real love you want the other person's good. In romantic love you want the other person."
-Margaret Anderson The Fiery Fountains
"When one is in love, one begins by deceiving oneself. And one ends by deceiving others. That is what the world calls a romance."
"Our present economic, social and international arrangements are based, in large measure, upon organized lovelesness."
"(Love is) the joy of the good, the wonder of the wise, the amazement of the gods."
Plato (428-348 BCE)
"All of everything that I understand, I understand only because I love."
And when two people understand each other in their inmost hearts,
their words are sweet and strong, like the fragrance of orchids . "
Ta Chuan/The Great Treatise
"The word "love" has by no means the same sense for both sexes and this is one of the serious misunderstandings that divide them."
-Simone De Beauvoir
"True love is like ghosts, which everybody talks about and few have seen."
-Francois De La Rochefoucauld
"Love just doesn't sit there, like a stone, it has to be made, like bread; re-made all the time, made new."
-Ursula K. Le Guin
"Love is a tyrant sparing none."
"If two people love each other, there can be no happy end to it."
"Love's a disease. But curable."
"A man can be short and dumpy and getting bald but if he has fire, women will like him."
"Love and passion are two different states of soul which poets, men of the world, philosophers and boobies continually confound. Love entails a mutuality of sentiment, the certainty of unfailing joys, a reciprocity of pleasure and a oneness of feeling that are too complete to allow room for jealousy. So that possession is a means and not an end; infidelity hurts but does not separate; the soul is neither more nor less ardent or stirred; it is incessantly happy. In short, desire, which a divine exhalation spreads over the immensity of time from one extremity to the other, stains us with an identical tint: love is like the purest of blue skies. Passion is but the presentiment of love and its infinitude, to which all yearning souls aspire. Passion is hope, but hope may be disappointed. Passion means both suffering and mutability; more than one passion without dishonor, since it is so natural to reach out impetuously towards happiness ! But in life there is only one love. "
History of the 13
"And only the last love of a woman can satisfy the first love of a man. "
'The gods love each other consciously. Conscious lovers become gods."
"Love is, sooner or later, the beginning of all suffering."
Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau, Archbishop of Salzburg (1611)
"When we want to read of the deeds that are done for love, whither do we turn?
To the murder column."
"I love her and she loves me, and we hate each other with a wild hatred born of love."
"The great tragedy of life is not that men perish, but that they cease to love."
-W. Somerset Maugham
"One would always want to think of oneself as being on the side of love, ready to recognize it and wish it well-but , when confronted with it in others , one so often resented it, questioned its true nature, secretly dismissed the particular instance as folly or promiscuity. Was it merely jealousy, or a reluctance to admit so noble and enviable a sentiment in anyone but oneself?"
"The heart that can no longer/ Love passionately, must with fury hate."
"O tell her, brief is life but love is long."
-Alfred Lord Tennyson
"I have learned not to worry about love; but to honor its coming with all my heart."
"Men should pray to be spared the experience of love without wisdom and strength. Or, finding themselves in love, they should pray for knowledge and power to guide their love, Love is 'not enough."
"True love is no game of the faint-hearted and the weak; it is born of strength and understanding."
"Believe in love, it takes all, it gives all."
"Of all the worn, smudged, dog ' s -eared words in our vocabulary, "love" is surely the grubbiest, smelliest, slimiest. Bawled from a million pulpits, lasciviously crooned through hundreds of millions of loud-speakers, it has become an outrage to good taste and decent feeling, an obscenity which one hesitates ,to pronounce. And yet it has to be pronounced, for, after all, Love is the last word. "
"So self-contradictory, indeed, has love become that some of those studying family life have concluded that "love" is simply the name for the way more powerful members of the family control other members. Love, Ronald Laing maintains, is a cover for violence."
Love and Will
Gently she moved in the calmness of beauty,
Moved as the bough to the light breeze of morning.
Dazzled my eyes as they gazed, till before me
All was a mist and confusion of figures.
Ne' er had I sought her, and ne'er she sought me;
Fated the hour, and the love and the meeting.
(from a poem by Umar ibn 'bibi Rabiah-translated by
"Emotional love, when not accompanied by instinctive love (as it seldom is), rarely results in offspring; and when it does, biology is not served, Strange creatures arise from the embraces of emotional love, mermen and mermaids, bluebeards and les belles dames sans merci, Emotional love is not only short-lived, but it evokes its slayer. Such love creates hate in its object, if hatred is not already there, The emotional lover soon becomes an object of indifference and quickly thereafter of hatred. These are the tragedies of love emotional,"
"The good news is that human beings are designed to fall in love. The bad news is that they aren't designed to stay there."
The Moral Animal
"All lovers are not indivisible
Though wondrous is their ardent union,
For love is only an eternal strife
and kisses but the Fiery truths that tell of cataclysm.
We are never one
But eager enemies in this passionate life."
Blanche Shoemaker Wagstaff
"If one wished to be perfectly sincere, one would have to admit there are two kinds of love well-fed and ill-fed. The rest is pure fiction."
"Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit."
"Two persons love in one another the future good which they aid
one another to unfold."
"We don't believe in rheumatism and true love until after the first
Marie Ebner Von Eschenback
"Don't you think I was made for you? I feel like you had me ordered-and I was delivered to you-to be worn-I want you to wear me, like a watch-charm or a button hole bouquet-to the world."
-Zelda Fitzgerald letter to F. Scott
"This being in love is great-you get a lot of compliments and begin to think you are a great guy."
-F. Scott Fitzgerald
"It's just that we don't understand what's the matter....Why did we lose peace and love and health, one after the other? If we knew, if there was anybody to tell us, I believe we could try. I'd try so hard."
-F. Scott Fitzgerald, One Trip Abroad
"When you love someone all your saved-up wishes start coming out."
"For one Human Being to love another :
That is perhaps the most difficult of all
our tasks. . . the work for which all other
works is but preparation. "
"What is love? After all, it is quite simple. Love is everything which enhances, widens and enriches our life. "
"Love is ever patient and kind, never jealous or envious ,never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way . It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do wrong. It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out. If you love someone you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost. You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him, and always stand your ground In defending him. All the special gifts and powers from God will someday come to an end , but love goes on forever . "
I Corinthians 13 '
"Everyone wants love to follow them
down their road;
Where is it that Love wants to go?"
The Queen of Swords
"A man, out of charity, ought to love himself more than
any other person, more than his neighbor . "
St , Thomas Aquinas
"Love must be learned, and learned again and again: there is no end to it. Hate needs no instruction, but only wants to be provoked."
-Katherine Anne Porter
(The remedy for self-love is Self-love)
"Thus it is that God' s Law of Love is manifested in every action-reaction of Nature. After long aeons of man's hard experiences in learning how to manifest the Love principle in his dealings with other men, he will some day know his own Oneness with God, and find happiness and peace which can only come to him by having made that supreme discovery of his own divinity. "
Walter and Lao Russell
University of Science and Foundation
SWANNANOA , Waynesboro VA
"Free love is sometimes love but never freedom."
Elizabeth Bibesco Heaven
- "Love is a psychosomatic activity which consumes energy and
wastes time . "
Mao Tse Tong
"Love is a tyrant sparing none."
"Every love's the love before
In a duller dress."
"When the winds blow and the rains fall and the sun shines through the clouds....he still resolves as he did then, that nothing so fine ever happened to him or anyone else as falling in love with Thee-my dearest heart."
-Richard M. Nixon
"Love is the mystery between two people , not the identity. "
"There is no real surrender in "passion." Lately this inferior form of love has achieved undeserving ,merit and favor. Some think That the measure of one's love is in proportion to one's proximity to the suicide or murder of Werther or Othello, and the insinuation is that every other form of love is imaginary and "cerebral,." I think that, on the contrary, the term "passion" should be restored to its ancient pejorative meaning. Turning a revolver on oneself or on another does not guarantee in the slightest the quality or even the quantity of a sentiment. "Passion" is a pathological state which implies defectiveness of soul. A person vulnerable to the mechanism of obsession, or one possessing a very simple, crude nature will turn every germ of feeling that befalls him into "passion", that is, mania. Let us tear down the romantic trappings that have adorned passion. Let us cease believing that the measure of a man' s love lies in how stupid he has become or is willing to be.
Ortega Y Gasset
"To love without criticism is to be betrayed."
-Djuna Barnes Nightwood
"Of all forms of caution, caution in love is perhaps the most fatal to true happiness."
"Love is an infrequent occurrence , a sentiment which only certain souls can hope to experience in fact, a specific talent which some individuals possess, ordinarily granted in conjunction with other talents but which may occur alone . "
Ortega Y Gasset
"A youth with his first cigar makes himself sick; a youth with his first girl makes everybody sick."
-Mary Wilson Little
"Love is an
to be irresistibly
"Poets have no right to picture love as blind: its bandage must be pulled off and henceforth it must be given the use of its eyes."
"What separates two people most profoundly is a different sense and degree of cleanliness. What avails all decency and mutual usefulness and good will towards each other-in the end the fact remains "They can't stand each other's smell:"
"To cheat oneself out of love is the most terrible deception it is an eternal loss for which there is no reparation, either in time or in eternity."
"If you would be loved, love and be lovable."
All our life is-the hope for love.
And all that was on earth is-love
You think the sun is bringing light to us.
But it is love that is bringing light to us."
"Love requires respect and friendship as well as passion. Because there comes a time when you have to get out of bed."
"But the particles from which love is built up are too fine to be subdivided and analyzed, just as the total of love is too extensive to be perceived at one time and from one emotional coin of vantage."
The Sister of Katya
"If love is the answer, could you rephrase the question?"
"God is love-I dare say. But what a mischievous devil love is. "
"I am Tarzan of the Apes. I want you. I am yours. You are mine. We will live here together always in my house. I will bring you the best fruits, the tenderest deer, the finest meats that roam the jungle. I will hunt for you. I am the greatest of the jungle hunters. I will fight for you. I am the mightiest of the jungle fighters. You are Jane Porter, I saw it in your letter. When you see this you will know that it is for you and that Tarazan of the Apes love you."
-Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarazan of the Apes 1914
"Love does not consist of gazing at each other, but looking outward together in the same direction. "
Antoine De Saint Exupey
"I was reading an old ballad telling about a girl waiting for her lover on a Saturday night but he did not come and she went to bed "and wept so bitterly she got up and wept so bitterly," and suddenly the scene expanded in my mind: I saw the jutland heath in its indescribable loneliness, with its solitary skylark-then one generation after the other rose up, and all their maidens sang for me and wept so bitterly, and sank back into their graves again, and I wept with them."
Soren Kierkegaard (diary)
"If young man loves a maiden,
who turns from him aside
To one who loves another yet
And takes her for his Bride.
- The girl, in sore resentment
At fortune so ill-starred,
Marries the next that comes along;
The first lad takes it hard.
It's all an old, old story,
And yet it' s always new:
And whosoever suffers it, "
It breaks his heart in two.
"Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,
" A medley of extremporanea;
And love is a thing that can never go wrong, '
And I am Marie of Roumania. "
"The emotion of love, in spite of the romantics, is not self-sustaining; it endures only when the lovers love many things together, and not merely each other. " "
' A Preface to Morals
"We love because it is the only true adventure."
"Whatsoever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same."
"Where we seem most effectively to shut out love, it lies covert and concealed; we live not a moment exempt from its influence."
Blaise Pascal (1623=1662)
"There is no happiness comparable to that of the first thunderclaps when one asks: "Do you love me?" and the other replies "Yes."
Guy de Maupassant (1850-1893)
"Love is the effort a man makes to be satisfied with only one woman."
"Sometimes love is stronger than a man’s convictions."
Isaac Bashevis Singer
"I learned the real meaning of love. Love is absolute loyalty. People fade, looks fade, but loyalty never fade's, You can depend so much on certain people, you can set your watch by them. And that's love, even if it doesn't seem very exciting."
"Love cures people-both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it."
"Love is a grave mental disease."
"In love there are two things-bodies and words."
Joyce Carol Oates
"Although there’s a case to be made for an occasional one-night explosion of passion, the only thing that makes sex extraordinary is love. Period. Forget the carnal mythologizing."
"Love is also like a coconut which is good while it is fresh, but you have to spit it out when the juice is gone, because what’s; left tastes bitter."
"Love is so much better when you’re not married."
"I think a man and a woman should choose each other for life, for the simple reason that a long life with all its accidents is barely enough for a man and a woman to understand each other; and in this case to understand is to love."
William Butler Yeats
"Or again, consider the difference between love and mere sex attraction. Love is an experience in which our whole being is renewed and refreshed as is that of plants by rain after a drought. In sex intercourse without love there is nothing of this. When the momentary pleasure is ended, there is fatigue, disgust, and a sense that life is hollow. Love is a part of the life of Earth; sex without love is not."
The conquest of Happiness
"love is the principle which makes magic possible Love acts magically."
"Love is a delightful day’s journey. At the farther end kiss your companion and say farewell."
"To live is like love, all reason against it and all healthy instinct for it."
"Love is what happens to men and women who don’t know each other."
W. Somerset Maugham
"Love is like measles, we can’t have it bad but once, and the later in life we have it the tougher it goes with us."
Josh Billings (1818-1885)
"The face of all the world is changed, I think, since I first heard the footsteps of thy soul."
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
"In our life is a single color as on an artist’s palette which provides the meaning of life and art, it is the color of love."
"To fall in love is to create a religion that has a fallible God."
Jorge Luis Borges
"In how many lives does Love really play a dominant part? The average taxpayer is no more capable of a ‘grand passion’ than of a grand opera."
"Love is tremendously passionate and therefore it acts immediately. It has no time interval between the seeing and the doing. And when you have that love you can put away all your sacred books, all your gods."
"There are more kinds of love than there are stars in the milky way."
"Love is like quicksilver in the hand. Leave the fingers open and it stays, clutch it, and it darts away."
"We are so trained in the thought system of fear and attack that we get to the point where natural thinking-love-feels unnatural and unnatural thinking-fear-feels natural. It takes real discipline and training to unlearn the thought system of fear."
"Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get-only with what you are expecting to give-which is everything."
"No man or woman really knows what perfect love is until they have been married a quarter of a century."
Love conquers all.
Virgil (70-19 B.C.)
"WE can only learn to love by loving."
"Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments. Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds. Or bends with the remover to remove."
"One is very crazy when in love."
"It’s the living together from day to day….The long, slow enduring thing…that’s’ what we live by…not the occasional spasm of any sort, little by little, living together, two people fall into a sort of unison, they vibrate so intricately to one another."
"One gains a profoundly personal, selfish joy from the mere existence of the person one loves."
"Love is an irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired."
"Love is merely a madness; and, I tell you, deserves a dark house and a whip as madmen do; and the reason why they are not so punished and cured is that the lunacy is so ordinary that the whippers are in love too."
"One is very crazy when in love."
"Some people fall in love with the swiftness and force of an electric shock; while with others the process is so gradual that the fact is not discovered until some accident or emergency reveals it to the interior perception."
Love: that self-love a deux.
MME. De Stael
"Perfect love means to love the one through whom one became unhappy."
"No disguise can long conceal love where it exists, or long feign it where it is lacking."
"It is a common enough case, that of a man being suddenly captivated by a woman nearly the opposite of his ideal."
"Like everybody who is not in love, he imagined that one chose the person whom one loved after endless deliberations and on the strength of various qualities and advantages."
"The loving are the daring."
Bayard Taylor (1825-1878)
"No one has ever loved anyone the way everyone wants to be loved."
"I still love you, but…….
Napoleon (letter to Josephine)
"Love does not express itself on command; it cannot be called out like dog to its master-merely because one thinks he needs to see it. Love is autonomous; it obeys only itself."
Robert C. Murphy
" A person who is unable to love cannot reveal himself."
Helen Merrel Lynd
"The best thing we can do for those we love is to help them escape from us."
Baron Freidrich Von Hugel
"Love, love, love-all the wretched cant of it, masking egotism, lust, masochism, fantasy under a mythology of sentimental postures."
"The one thing we can never get enough of is love. And the one thing we never give enough of is love."
"Love is a naked child: do you think he has pockets for money?"
"Not to believe in love is great sign of dullness. There are some people so indirect and lumbering that they think all real affection must rest on circumstantial evidence."
The Life of reason; Reason in Society (1905)
"Love is something far more than desire for sexual intercourse; it is the principal means of escape from the loneliness which afflicts most men and women throughout their lives."
The Place of love in Human life; Marriage and Morals (1929)
"One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life;/that word is love.
Oedipus at Colonus (401 B.C. )
"This was love at first sight, love everlasting….a feeling unknown, unhoped for, unexpected in so far as it was a matter of conscious awareness; it took entire possession of him, and he understood with joyous amazement, that this was for life."
Disorder and Early Sorrow (1925)
"We cannot love ourselves unless we love others, and we cannot love others unless we love ourselves. But a selfish love of ourselves makes us incapable of loving others."
No Man is an Island
"Romantic love is an illusion. Most of us discover this truth at the end of a love affair or else when the sweet emotions of love lead us into marriage and then turn down their flames."
"Love is a mousetrap-you go in when you wish, but you don't come out when you like."
"In tense mutual erotic love, love which involves with the flesh all the most refined sexual being of the spirit, which reveals and perhaps even ex nihilo creates spirit as sex, is comparatively rare in this inconvenient world."
The Sacred and Profane Love Machine
"There is no fury like a woman searching for a new lover."
"No woman ever hates a man for being in love with her; but many a man for being a friend to her."
" love begins with love; friendship, however warm cannot change to love, however mild."
My love will come.
Will fling open her arms and fold me in them,
Will understand my fears, observe my changes,
In from the pouring dark, from the pitch night-
Without stopping to bang the taxi door
She’ll run upstairs through the decaying porch
Burning with love and love’s happiness,
She’ll run dripping upstairs, she won’t knock,
will take my head in her hands,
And when she drops her overcoat on a chair
It will slide to the floor in a blue heap’
"I find as I grow older that I love those most whom I loved first."
"The loss of love is a terrible thing; /they lie who say that death is worse."
On These I stand
"It is impossible to love a second time what we have really ceased to love."
"Love is an endless mystery,/for it has nothing else to explain it."
"Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit."
"Love, like a sense of humor, is now claimed by everyone, even though love, like a sense of humor, is rather more rare than not, and to most of us poor muddlers, unbearable at full strength."
Rocking the Boat
"We must try to love one another…The terrible and beautiful sentence, the last, the final wisdom that the earth can give, is remembered at the end, is spoken too late, wearily, it stands there, awful and untraduced, above the dusty racket of our lives, No forgetting, no forgiving, no denying, no explaining, no hating."
Look Homeward Angel (1929)
"Nothing so excites the imagination as God’s intention with respect to the relationship between the sexes. The nature and meaning of love in the sexual partnership between man and woman has consumed the interest of the race from the beginning of its history on the planet. And yet the misunderstanding, growing out of this insatiable longing for conjugal love, has been nothing short of monumental. Every other form of love, as the love of parent for child, the love of brother for sister, the love of state or church, the love of life, and the love of God, all have been ennobled and dignified in religious thought; but the very mention of romantic or erotic love the love of a man and a woman in ecstatic sexual union, immediately connotes an association that arouses spiritual indignation among that vast number of moralists who condemn as wicked what they cannot comprehend or enjoy."
Howard John Zitko
"Had we not loved ourselves at all, we could never have been obliged to love anything. So that self-love is the basis of all love."
Thomas Traherne (1636-74)
"Self-love for ever creeps out, like a snake, to sting anything which happens…to stumble upon it."
Lord Byron (1788-1824)
"I dote on myself, there is a lot of me all so luscious."
"Self-love seems so often unrequited."
"Narcissist: psychoanalytic term for the person who loves himself more than the analyst; considered to be the manifestation of a dire mental disease whose successful treatment depends on the patient learning to love the analyst more and himself less."
The Second Sin
"A narcissist is someone better looking than you are."
"There is no remedy for love but to love more."
-Henry David Thoreau
"It is amazing how little the empirical sciences have to offer on the subject of love. Particularly strange is the silence of psychologists, for one might think this to be their particular obligation….Sometimes this is merely sad or irritating, as in the case of the textbooks of psychology and sociology, practically none of which treats the subject….More often the situation becomes completely ludicrous. One might reasonably expect that writers of serious treatises on the family, on marriage, and on sex should consider the subject of love to be a proper, even basic, part of their self-imposed task. But I must report that no single one of the volumes on these subjects available in the library where I work has any serious mention of the subject."
"In the old days love was a cruel proprietary thing. But now Anna could let Nettie live in the world of my mind, as freely as a rose will suffer the presence of white lilies. If I could hear notes that were not in her compass, she was glad, because she loved me, that I should listen to other music than hers. And she, too, could see the beauty of Nettie. Life is so rich and generous now, giving friendship, and a thousand tender interests and helps and comforts, that no one stints another of the full realization of all possibilities of beauty. For me from the beginning Nettie was the figure of beauty, the shape and colour of the divine principle that lights the world. For everyone there are certain types, certain faces and forms, gestures, voices and intonations that have that inexplicable unanalysable quality. These come through the crowd of kindly friendly fellowmen and women-one's own. These touch one mysteriously, stir deeps that must otherwise slumber, pierce and interpret the world. To refuse this interpretation is to refuse the sun, to darken and deaden all life....I loved Nettie, I loved all who were like her, in the measure that they were like her, in voice, or eyes, or form, or smile. And between my wife and me there was no bitterness that the great goddess, the life-giver, Aphrodite, Queen of the living Seas, came to my imagination so. It qualified our mutual love not at all, since now in our changed world love love is unstinted; it is a golden net about our globe that nets all humanity together."
In the Days of the Comet
When Trastram met Isolde
By Joyce Carol Oates
Love in the Western world-to borrow Denis de Rougemont’s useful term-has come to mean, in the popular imagination, romantic love almost exclusively. Pure motion, passion, "love at first sight"-we so take for granted the import of romantic love, it may comes as a surprise to learn that the very concept of "love" based upon emotion as a high value, and not as an outlaw passion, is relatively new in the history of mankind.
Romantic love isn’t so much a love that defies conventions, for romantic love is of all love types the most conventional, as a love that arises with seeming spontaneity; unwilled, undirected by others’ suggestions or admonitions, raw and unpremeditated and of the heart; not cerebral and not genital. Romantic love is forever in opposition to formal, cultural and tribal prescriptions of behavior: arranged marriages, for instance, in which brides and their dowries are possessions to be handed over to a bridegroom and his family, or in which titled names are wed in business-like arrangements that have little to do with the feelings of individuals. Arguably the most celebrated of late-20th –century public figures, Diana, Princess of Wales, would seem to have been a martyr to such an arrangement; her political marriage to Prince Charles ending in dissolution and divorce, and her "quest for personal happiness" (i.e. romantic love) ending in a grotesquely public death on a Parisian boulevard.
In the ancient world, romantic love would seem to have been virtually unknown, and rarely celebrated. Our generic term "love" didn’t exist. The sentiment of romantic love as we know it was the homoerotic love of older Greek men for boys; marital love, which surely existed, seems oddly not to have been much honored, at least in surviving literature. Plato’s elaborately extended metaphor of the republic, or the perfectly balanced state, discusses marriage primarily as mating; by contrast, Plato’s "Symposium" celebrates homoerotic love in the most blushingly romantic terms. How different this is from the extramarital erotic attraction of heterosexuals, which results in devastation and violent death. In Euripides’ "Hippolytus," for instance, the young Queen Phaedra falls in love with her husband’s illegitimate son, who rejects her, and causes her to commit suicide; Phaedra is no romantic, but rather the victim of an ungovernable, unwished-for passion imposed upon her by Aphrodite. Such sexual desire is akin to a curse.
Where to the classical mind the intervention of eros in human affairs signals chaos, disaster and retribution, to the more modern, romantically inclined sensibility, eros is the very engine of life’s story, a seemingly inexhaustible fund of fantasies of (mostly heterosexual) desire. The adulterous tale of Sir Lancelot and Queen Guinevere, the wife of King Arthur, in Sir Thomas Malory’s "Morte d’ Arthur" strikes a startlingly contemporary note, though written in 1469; the illicit romances of Heloise and Abelard, Tristam and Isolde and other medieval lovers concentrate upon an intensity of genuine feeling not found in earlier literature. By the 14th and 15th centuries, in aristocratic European societies at least, eros had become a fine art, worthy of a courtier’s fullest attention. Not coarse sexuality, but a refined gentilesse is the ideal of these romances; the love of the courtier for his lady, usually another man’s wife, had been interpreted as a secularization of the medieval cult of the Virgin Mary, a "feminization" of the patriarchal Roman Catholic Church. These tales are inevitably from the male perspective: the lady is saintly, and of an unearthly beauty; or, in later refinements, the lady is cruel, even diabolical, and the courtier’s passion becomes his punishment.
In subsequent centuries in the West, romantic love has triumphed as a sort of private, personal mystique linked with a high cultural value.
The quintessential romantic-minded heroine is Flaubert’s Emma Bovary, a finely drawn portrait of a woman doomed to unhappiness in love. Emma is corrupted not by an actual man but by her reading; she yearns to locate, in the real world, the elusive image of romantic passion. The problem with such yearning, Flaubert suggests, is that it invariably leads to disappointment.
At least one major American novelist, F. Scott Fitzgerald, wrote of virtually nothing except romantic love (and it’s unforeseen consequences), and it might be argued that writers as diverse as Carson McCullers and Jack Kerouac are essentially celebrants of homoerotic romance. John Updike, our intrepid explorer of love’s willful illusions, would seem as American heir of Proust in both the poetic precision of his style and his fascination with erotic infatuation. Updike’s preoccupations bring to mind a question of de Rougemont: "Without adultery, what would happen to imaginative writing?"
Coming of age in America for most of us has to do with falling under the spell of the culture’s seductive promises about love: to grow up in the 50’s , as I did, was to be bombarded with images of every kind of romantic-love idea. Advertisements presented unfailingly pretty, feminine girl-women in various stages of bliss, always male-related; Hollywood movies dramatized the predominant-possibly for women the only-story of significance, the love story. Apart from these images of individuals fulfilled by romance, there were few others, and none as glamorous. (What images of the intellectual life, for instance? The artistic life?) Of course, these are clichés, and yet-what power clichés possess when we’re young and vulnerable. "Romance" for me somehow became disembodies from any particular figure or icon and attached itself to the quest for adventure, and wild exploration itself. Luckily for me, I can’t be disappointed in this "romance" precisely because it’s purely abstract and imaginative.
Romantic love, that most precarious and gossamer of emotions, will surely survive the millennia that gave birth to it as long as a reasonably affluent civilization endures, for the secret of romantic love is economic: it’s a luxury only some can afford, just as a refined taste in food is a consequence of plentiful food supply. Is romantic love illusion? Delusion? An ideal dream? Just as the majority of humankind will continue to believe in gods of various denominations when no actual gods have been sighted, so men and women will continue to fall under the spell of romantic love and to shape, or misshape, their lives to that end. Biologists may grimly describe for us the mammalian underpinnings of courtship, mating, bonding, fidelity (where there is in fact fidelity)-but, being human, knowing full well as the song warns us that "falling in love with love is falling for make-believe" we are the species that demands to be lied to, in the nicest ways."
Joyce Carol Oates
New York Times Mag/April 18,1999
"Every adult life could be said to be defined by two great love stories. The first-the story of our quest for sexual love-is well known and well charted, its vagaries form the staple of music and literature, it is socially accepted and celebrated. The second-the story of our quest for love from the world-is a more secret and shameful tale. If mentioned, it tends to be in caustic, mocking terms, as something of interest chiefly to envious or deficient souls, or else the drive for status is interpreted in an economic sense alone. And yet this second love story is no less intense than the first, it is no less complicated, important or universal, and its setbacks are no less painful. There is heartbreak here too."
Alain de Botton
The Rules of Love
From Andreas Capellanus
The Art of Courtly Love (From the High Middle Ages)
I. Marriage is no real excuse for not loving.
II. He who is not jealous cannot love.
III. No one can be bound by a double love.
IV. It is well known that love is always increasing or decreasing.
V. That which a lover takes against his will of his beloved has no relish.
VI. Boys do not love until they arrive at the age of maturity.
VII. When one lover dies, a widowhood of two years is required of the survivor.
VIII. No one should be deprived of love without the very best reasons.
IX. No one can love unless he is impelled by the persuasion of love.
X. Love is always a stranger in the home of avarice.
XI. It is not proper to love any woman whom one should be ashamed to seek to marry.
XII. A true lover does not desire to embrace in love anyone except his beloved.
XIII. When made public, love rarely endures.
XIV. The easy attainment of love makes it of little value; difficulty of attainment makes it prized.
XV. Every lover regularly turns pale in the presence of his beloved.
XVI. When a lover suddenly catches sight of his beloved, his heart palpitates.
XVII. A new love puts to flight an old one.
XVIII. Good character alone makes any man worthy of love.
XIX. If love diminishes, it quickly fails and rarely revives.
XX. A man in love is always apprehensive.
XXI. Real jealousy always increases the feeling of love.
XXII. Jealousy, and therefore love, are increased when one suspects his beloved.
XXIII. He whom the thought of love vexes, eats and sleeps very little.
XXIV. Every act of a lover ends in the thought of his beloved.
XXV. A true lover considers nothing good except what he thinks will please his beloved.
XXVI. Love can deny nothing to love.
XXVII. A lover can never have enough of the solaces of his beloved.
XXVIII. A slight presumption causes a lover to suspect his beloved.
XXIX. A man who is vexed by too much passion usually does not love.
XXX. A true lover is constantly and without intermission possessed by the thought of his beloved.
XXXI. Nothing forbids one woman being loved by two men or one man by two women.
"After the nuptial, the two families engaged in an agape or "love feast." This is a meal that early Christians are together as a symbol of affection and brotherhood. The word "agape" is Greek, meaning "love, " and is found in verse 12 of Saint Jude's Epistle.
The earliest Christian agapes, unrelated to a marriage, consisted of a banquet, prayers, and the reading of Psalms, at which the rich and poor ate at the same table, the "haves" providing what the "have-nots" lacked.
All Christian agapes were banned in the seventh century because their party like atmosphere had gotten wildly out of hand. In fact, the Christian agape had regressed to precisely the wild pagan Lovefest it was for the Greeks."
Sacred Origins of Profound Things
Boise Idaho –Scientists have finally discovered the answer to the age-old riddle of what really makes love bloom-a chemical cocktail in the brain.
Not romantic, but true, say experts. The heady high you feel when you look at that special someone comes from a mix of substances called dopamine, phenylethylamine and norepinephrine in your brain.
"It’s like speed," says Anthony Walsh, a professor at Boise State University and author of the Science of Love: Understanding Love and its Effects. "That’s why we do stupid things when we’re in love."
"You don’t know you are hallucinating, but you have that tunnel vision. The sun shines out of that person’s ears, by God
"We do a lot of weird and wonderful things."
And just like any drug junkie, lovers crave more of the fix in stronger doses until your gray matter just goes numb, says Walsh.
That’s when you cross over from the attraction to the attachment phase. " This is a much more calm, stress-free state," he says.
Too boring for some folks, though. Scientists are hard at work on a nasal spray made of pheromones-odorless molecules that act as love potions when they hit the human nose-that will give longtime partners a shot at passion again."
Society of Limerents
RR 2, Box 251
Millsboro, DE 19966….
"To love someone deeply
gives you strength.
Being loved by someone
deeply gives you courage."
"Love comforteth like sunshine after rain."
"There is always something left to love.
And if you ain't learned that, you ain't
-Lorraine Hansberry A Raisin In the Sun
"When you really want love you will find it waiting for you."
-Oscar Wilde De Profundis
"Love is the final end of the world's history, the Amen of the universe."
-Novalis (Friedrich Von Hardenberg (1722-1801)
Thoughts on Religion
Book: "Love in the Western World" by Denis de Rougemont
Book: "Love In The Ancient World" by Christopher Miles with J.J. Norwich
Book: "The Horrors of Love" by Jean Dutourd
Book: "The Technique of the Love Affair" by Doris Langley Moore
Book: "Can Love Last? The Fate of Romance Over Time" by Stephen A. Mitchell
Book: "On Love" by Alain de Botton
Book: "Why We Love: The Nature and Chemistry of Romantic Love" by Helen Fisher
"There is nothing nobler or more admirable than when two people who see eye to eye keep house as man and wife, confounding their enemies and delighting their friends."
Odyssey,9th c. B.C.
"Better to marry, than to burn"
"Let them bear children until they are dead of it; that is what they are for."
(A student recorded this saying by Martin Luther)
"Next to God's word there is no more precious treasure than holy matrimony. God's highest gift on earth is a pious, cheerful, God-fearing, home-keeping wife, with whom you may live peacefully, to whom you may entrust your goods, and body and life."
"From the day you marry you must have no will of your own. The subordination of your sex to ours is enforced by nature, by reason, and by revelation. Of course it must produce the most happiness to both parties. Mr. B. (the intended husband), if he is like others of his sex, will often require unreasonable sacrifices of your will to his. If this should be the case, still honor and obey him.....The happiest marriages I have known have been those when the subordination I have recommended has been most complete."
(Advice to a young woman by Dr. Benjamin Rush...18th century)
"Charles Darwin had some qualms about marriage, so he wrote a list of the pros and cons. Len Fisher quotes it in Rock, Paper, Scissors: Game Theory in Everyday Life.
Among the pluses of marriage: "Object to be beloved and played with. Better than a dog anyhow; home, and someone to take care of house; charms of music and female chit-chat; and a nice soft wife on a sofa with good fire and books and music perhaps."
As for unmarried life: "Conversation with clever men at clubs; not forced to visit relatives and bend in every trifle; (freedom from) anxiety and responsibility; and money for books.
Proposing-to his cousin Emma Wedgwood-won out. "My God, it is intolerable to think of spending one's whole life, like a neuter bee, working, working, and nothing after all-No, no, won't do."
"I am faithful-to myself! I am bored to death by monogamy"
Carla Bruni (engaged to marry President Nicolas Sarkozy of France) New York Times Jan 8,2008
"Marriage is the highest mystery."
"A rare spoil for a man/Is the winning of a good wife; very/Plentiful are the worthless women."
Euripides (405 B.C.)
"A faithful wife must serve….her lord as if he were a god, and never do ought to pain him, whatsoever be his state, and even though he is devoid of every virtue."
Manu Code (300 B.C.)
In the entire Bible, there is only one description of the wife-"
"I wonder what Adam and Eve think of it by this time?"
"When we have an experience...on successive occasions, we quickly begin to adapt to it, and the experience yields less pleasure each time...Psychologists calls this habituation, economists call it declining marginal utility, and the rest of us call it marriage."
Stumbling On Happiness
"What was it about marriage anyway? Even if you loved your husband there came that inevitable year when fucking him turned as bland as Velveeta cheese: filling, fattening even, but no thrill to the taste buds, no bittersweet edge."
"We made love all day
In our little hideaway
But I blew up our love nest
By making one little request
-Ms. Crow "Diamond Ring" lyrics
"He that takes a wife takes Care."
"Marriage is really tough because you have to deal with feelings....and lawyers."
"Marriage is much more necessary to a man than to a woman; for he is much less able to supply himself with domestic comforts."
"The dread of loneliness is greater than the fear of bondage, so we get married."
"So that ends my first experience of matrimony, which I always thought a highly over-rated performance."
"There are but two objects in marriage, love or money. If you marry for love, you will certainly have some very happy days, and probably many uneasy ones; if you marry for money, you will have no happy days and probably no uneasy ones."
"Marriages, at least in the beginning, take three people. The third provides the glue."
"Every marriage tends to consist of an aristocrat and a peasant. Of a teacher and a learner."
"Marriage is based on the theory that when a man discovers a brand of beer exactly to this taste he should at once throw up his job and go to work in the brewery."
-George Jean Nathan (1882-1958)
"Marriage is incumbent on all who possess the ability."
Muhammed (Sayings of Muhammed 297)
"Never marry but for love, but see that thou lovest what is lovely....It is the difference betwixt lust and love that this is fixed, that volatile. Love grows, lust wastes by enjoyment; and the reason is that one springs from a union of souls, and the other from a union of sense...."
"People insist on confusing marriage and love on the one hand and love and happiness on the other. But they have nothing in common. That is why, the absence of love being more frequent than love, there are happy marriages."
"Nearly all marriages, even happy ones, are mistakes: in the sense that almost certainly (in a more perfect world, or even with a little more care in this imperfect one) both partners might be found more suitable mates. But the real soul-mate is the one your are married to."
"Marriage is a step so grave and decisive that it attracts light-headed variable men by its very awfulness."
Robert L. Stevenson
"I, with a deeper instinct choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naive or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman."
"Matrimony is the union of meanness and martyrdom"
-Karl Kraus (1874-1936)
"Honesty has ruined more marriage than infidelity."
-Charles McGabe (191501983)
"The best part about married life is the fights. The rest is merely so-so."
"Yes, marriage is hateful, detestable. A kind of ineffable, sickening disgust seizes my mind when I think of this most despotic, most unrequited fetter which prejudice has forged to confine with its energies."
-Percy Bysshe Shelley
"What do you think of gay marriage?"
Gore Vidal: "Since heterosexual marriage is such a disaster, why on earth would anybody want to imitate it?"
Time Magazine Nov 20,2006
"What a rare find is a capable wife!
Her worth is far beyond that of rubies.
Her husband puts his confidence in her.
And lacks no good thing.
She is good to him, never bad.
All the days of her life.
She looks for wool and flax,
And sets her hand to them with a will
She is like a merchant fleet
Bringing her food from afar
She rises while it is still night.
And supplies provisions for her household.
The daily fare of her maids.
She sets her mind on an estate and
Acquires it; She plants a vineyard by her own labors.
She girds herself with strength
And performs her tasks with vigor
"There is indeed no more beautiful symbol than a wife."
"He is the most perfect Muslim whose disposition is best; and the best of you are they who behave best to their wives."
Muhammed (Sayings of Muhammed)
Sayings of Muhammed by Allama Sir Abdullah Al-Mamun Al-Suhrawardy
"What man could stand a perfect wife?"
"There are some men in the world who behave with the greatest complaisance, civility and good nature to all ladies whatsoever; except one."
"Marriage could be the greatest success in the sociological history of humanity if the man would or could play fair. But, I believe any woman with independent instincts, with the dream of making her individual personality count for something in the world, might just as well shun marriage."
"Marriage today is in no way viewed as an equal partnership, intended for the equal advantage and happiness of both parties. Nearly every man feels that his wife is his property, whose first duty, under all circumstances is to gratify his passions, without the least reference to her own health and happiness, or the welfare of their offspring: and so enfeebled is woman's judgment and moral sense from long abuse that she believes so too and quotes from the Bible to prove her own degradation."
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
"To put it another way, we were classically in love, holding the classic beliefs: Everything is possible between us, we can authentically care for each other through not just the coming days but, should we live long enough-and surely we will, so marvelously bolstered are our immune systems-through the numerous busy decades to come. We are one in true understanding. These brief days and nights of being given-at last, at last-everything we need, and some things we didn't know we needed, have left us fully stocked with reserves of loving-kindness, such that we-well, everybody can tell the story. It's in no way denigrating to admit what we all know: This time comes and then it goes."
The Dangerous Husband
"I can’t think of anything more boring than to be married to a nice complacent husband."
Dame Sybil Thorndike
"Women, deceived by men, want to marry them; it is a kind of revenge as good as any other."
Philippe De Remi (1246)
"The particular charm of marriage is the duologue, the permanent conversation between two people who talk over everything and everyone till death breaks the record. It is this back-chat which, in the long run, makes a reciprocal equality more intoxicating than any forms of servitude or domination."
The Unquiet Grave
Amer-Indian Marriage (Utes)
"A boy was considered a man and ready for marriage when he was able to provide meat. His first big game kill would be given away after he was rubbed with the blood of the animal. Deer blood would make him fleet of foot, the coyote's blood would make him shrewd and hard to deceive, while the mountain lion's blood would help him to be strong and able to follow tracks. This ceremonial bath of blood was followed by a great deal of advice concerning marriage and life. He was told to be good, to never quarrel, and that partners in marriage should do things for each other. He should never let the sun catch him in bed. The old men would say, "If you're going to be lazy, you won't be worthy." A poor hunter or horse raider might have difficulty in obtaining a suitable wife."
Utes: The Mountain People
"Any intelligent woman who reads the marriage contract, and then goes into it, deserves all the consequences."
"Marriage is a good deal like a circus: there is not as much in it as is represented in the advertising."
Edgar Watson Howe (Country Town Sayings, 1911)
"But conjugal love is tricky, and most people leave this world with an unsatisfied heart."
"Relationship is surely the mirror in which you discover yourself."
"….it runs in the blood of a man that he should care for womenfolk. It’s a need in him, deep as motherhood to a woman, and it’s a thing folks are likely to forget….If he’s to feel of any purpose to himself, he’s got to feel he’s needed, feel he stands between somebody and trouble."
"It is so far from being natural for a man and woman to live in a state of marriage, that we find all the motives which they have for remaining in that connection, and the restraints which civilized society imposes to prevent separation, are hardly sufficient to keep them together."
"A bad marriage is like an electrical thrilling machine: it makes you dance, but you can't let go."
Collected Works, 1911
"Even the deepest love doesn't stop a marriage from being a constant struggle for control."
Love & Marriage
"If two people love each other, there can be no happy end to it."
"Marriage cannot be a job as it has become."
The Female Eunuch
"Is this what marriage is? Discoveries and discoveries, changes and changes, until everything you had is gone?"
The Dangerous Husband
"The comfortable estate of widowhood is the only hope that keeps up a wife’s spirits."
Francis Galton (1822-1911)
"A husband is what is left of the lover after the nerve has been extracted."
"Marriage is the triumph of habit over hate."
"No slave is a slave to the same lengths, and in so full a sense of the word, as a wife is."
John Stuart Mill
The Subjugation of women
"Often the difference between a successful marriage and a mediocre one consists of leaving about three or four things a day unsaid."
"When people get married because they think it’s a long-time love affair, they’ll be divorced very soon, because all love affairs end in disappointment. But marriage is a recognition of a spiritual identity."
The Power of Myth
"All advanced Spiritualists-though few have the courage to confess it-repudiate marriage in its legal sense, and believe in the doctrine of affinities.-"
(The Founder of the Free Love Society, a Spiritualist, in a letter to the New York World 1856)
All bonds without friendship are shackles and their is no virtue in their maintenance . "
In the long run, the 'minor' virtues are the only ones that matter. Politeness is more reliable than the moist virtues of compassion, charity, and Sincerity; just as fair play is more important than the abstraction of justice. The major virtues tend to disintegrate under the pressures of convenient rationalization...,"
"Marriage may be compared to a cage the birds outside despair to get in and those within despair to get out."
"There is no more lovely, friendly and charming relationship, communion or company than a good marriage."
Table Talk (1569) (ex-monk & ex-nun)
"Marriage is to politics what the lever is to engineering. The state is not founded upon single individuals but upon couples and groups."
"War is no strife
To the dark house and the detested wife."
"Marriage: A legal or religious ceremony by which two persons of the opposite sex solemnly agree to harass and spy on each other for ninety-nine years, or until death do them join."
The Roycroft Dictionary and Book of Epigrams (1923)
"Lastly we recommend every young married man, who wishes to render his home happy, to consider his wife as the light of his domestic circle, and to permit no clouds, however small, To obscure the region in which she presides. Most women are naturally amiable, gentle and complying; and if a wife becomes perverse and indifferent to her home, it is generally her husband’s fault. He may have neglected her happiness; but nevertheless it is unwise in her to retort, and, instead of faithfully reflecting the brightness that still may shine upon her, to give back the dusky and cheerless hue which saddens her existence."
Decorum a practical treatise on Etiquette and dress 1877
"A young man asked me: ‘What in your opinion is the ideal husband?’ I cast about hastily in my mind and then replied; ‘Why-no husband at all."
Gertrude Atherton (1857-1948)
"The worst trial I had to endure, was having a husband continually on my hands."
"It is ridiculous to think you can spend your entire life with just one person. Three is about the right number."
Claire Boothe Luce
"The American girl makes a servant of her husband and then finds him contemptible for being a servant."
Steinbeck a life in letters
"Some cunning men choose fools for their wives, thinking to manage them, but they always fail."
"Marriage was all a woman's idea, and for man's acceptance of the pretty yoke it becomes us to be grateful."
The Province of the Heart, 1959
"NEVER consent to have the day of your wedding fixed until you
have good evidence that you are to have a furnished Home of your
own to go to. "
(advice taken from "Happy Homes & How to Make them "
a Victorian self-help book)
"The idea of a woman even consenting to be a wife, and yet being aware that she is entirely incompetent (as so many are) to cook a potato, or make a shirt! It may be fairly said that half the food consumed by the working classes is more or less spoiled in the cooking; and in addition, a large and extravagant proportion is wasted. "
"True education should prepare a young woman for her peculiar duties as the companion of man and the nursing mother of the rising generation; she would then be a real treasure, instead of being, as is too often the case, a burden and a snare. " "If you get tied to a woman whose propensity is to buy "great bargains" , whether she wants them or not, you will soon find that you have an outlet for your money which will require a large reserve to supply. Don't therefore, be led astray by any "pretty foot," duck of a bonnet" , or the "latest fashion' in dress, for these are often only advertisements of an empty mind. "
(advice from J.W. Kirtons "Happy Homes & How to make them"
Victorian advice to young women seeking husbands)
"Girls, beware of transient young men. Never suffer the addresses of a stranger." Recollect that one good farmer' s boy, or industrious mechanic, is worth all the floating fops in the world. The allurements of a dandy jack, with a gold chain round his neck, a walking stick in his paw, a three penny cigar in his mouth, or some honest tailor' s coat on his back, and a brainless, though fancy skull, never can make up the loss of a good father's home, and a good mother ' s counsel , and the society of brothers and sisters: their affections last, while that of such a young man is lost in the wane of the honeymoon. "
(for young men-the following advice)
"Should you select a 'vixen' , don't wonder if your friends sometimes say, "I wonder whatever induced him to pick her up! "
(for young women)
"Listen to no word of love from a man who swears, gambles, breaks the Sabbath, tipples, or associates with bad companions. "
"They that enter into a state of marriage cast a die of the greatest contingency, and yet of the greatest interest in the world, next to the last throw of eternity. Life or death, felicity or a lasting sorrow, are in the power of marriage. A woman, indeed , ventures most , for she hath no sanctuary to retire from an evil husband; she must dwell in her sorrow, and hatch the eggs which her own folly or infelicity hath produced; and she is more under it, because her tormentor hath a warrant of prerogative, and the woman may complain to God, as subjects do of tyrant princes, but otherwise she hath no appeal in the causes of unkindness. though the man can run from many hours of his sadness, yet he must return to it again; and when he sits among his neighbors, he remembers the objection that lies in his bosom, and he sighs deeply."
(celebrated Victorian Sermon "Marriage Ring)
"I have not changed my mind , I am not reconciled to society, and marriage, to my way of thinking, is one of the most barbarous institutions it has engendered. I have no doubt that it will be abolished if the human species makes some progress toward justice and reason; a more human and no less sacred link will replace it, assuring the existence of children who will be born of a man and a woman without forever shackling the freedom of one and the other. "
"The way they shut their doors, these married people, and shut themselves into their own exclusive alliance with each Other, even in love, disgusted him, It was a whole community of mistrustful couples insulated in private houses or private rooms, always in couples, and no further life, no further immediate, no disinterested relationship admitted a Kaleidoscope of couples, disjoined, separatist, meaningless entities of married couples."
Women In Love
"When two people are under the influence of the most violent, most insane, most delusive and most transient of passions, they are required to swear that they will remain in that excited, abnormal, exhausting state until death do them part."
"Marriage is the hell of false expectations, where both partners, expecting to be loved, defined and supported, abdicate responsibility for themselves and accuse the other of taking away freedom."
Marriage Is Hell
"Union is only possible to those who are units. to be fit For relations in time, souls, whether of man or woman, must be able to do without them in the spirits."
"How do I hate those words "an excellent marriage." In them is contained more of wicked worldliness than any other words one ever hears spoken."
"Marriage is for those who have given up the struggle."
"We study ourselves three weeks, we love each other three months, we squabble three years, we tolerate each other thirty years, and then the children start all over again."
"Trouble is, no woman in her right mind would marry a fool, and I’m certainly one."
"A lot you know about women!" she scoffed. "Did you ever see a fool who didn’t have a wife?"
Come to that, I hadn’t ."
"The trouble with many married people is that they are trying to get more out of marriage than there is in it."
"There is no character in the comedy of human life more difficult to play well than that of an old bachelor."
"Marriage: the conventional ending of a love affair. A lonesome state."
Oliver Herford and John C. Clay
Cupid's Encyclopedia (1910)
"There is nothing worse than solitude, growing old without a shoulder to lean on. Marry, marry-even if he's fat and boring!"
"The more you reveal your feelings and your trust in leaving your husband free , the more devoted he will be. All happiness in marriage consists of trust and constant kindness. Foolish love is soon past, but you must respect each other, and whenever possible be useful to each other. Each must prove the others true friend, in order to be able to bear the misfortunes of life and to establish the welfare of the House...All marriages would be happy if only one would conduct oneself like that . "
(Empress Maria Theresa's advice to her daughter)
"In the West, a man has legally one wife, but through his promiscuity his so-called "romantic adventures, he really has as many as an African Chieftain; and today, women are little better."
-Ponder on This
"After a few years of marriage a man and his wife are apt to be, if nothing else, at least the sort of enemies who respect each other."
"A man and a woman marry because both of them don't know what to do with themselves."
"Is there life after marriage? The answer is no. The constant proximity of another person will cramp your style in the end: unless that person is somebody you love, and then the burden will become unendurable at once."
"Marriage must incessantly contend with a monster that devours everything: familiarity."
Honore De Balzac
The Physiology of Marriage 1828
"One of the great reasons why so many husbands and wives make (a) shipwreck of their lives together is because a man is always seeking happiness, while a woman is on a perpetual still hunt for trouble."
"The sum which two married people owe to one another defies calculation. It is an infinite debt, which can only be discharged throughout eternity."
"And if a husband and wife love each other , it ' s no ones business what goes on between them. And whatever quarrels they may have , they mustn’t ' t allow even their own mothers to judge between them and must never talk about one another . They ' re their own judges . Love is a divine mystery , and must be hidden from the eyes of the world, as must whatever takes place between lovers. They have respect for each other, and marriage based on that respect. And since love existed once, since they married out of love , why should love die?"
Notes from the Underground
"Marriage is a very alienating institution, for men as well as women; it's a very dangerous situation-dangerous for men, who find themselves saddled with wife and children to support; dangerous for women, who aren't financially independent of men who can throw them out when they're forty; and very dangerous for children, because their parents vent all their frustrations and mutual hatred on them. The very words "conjugal rights" are dreadful. Any institution which solders one person to another, obliging people to sleep together who no longer want to, is a bad one."
Simone De Beavoir (New York Times Mag,June 2, 1974)
"He didn't say, Why had I gone. He didn't say, When would I return. He didn't ask anything about my plans, or tell me anything about his. Instead, when at last He spoke, Dennis said, "I'd be curious to know what you think marriage is. If the word 'marriage' has any meaning for you.?"
What an excellent question! It was elegant-succinct, dignified, painful, and utterly shaming-a beautiful response.
On the highway trucks blew past. I stood in a hot wind, clutching the receiver, trying , against daunting odds, to compose the felicitous answer his query deserved. Nothing would do. Not the intimidated child's "I don't know." Not the political campaigner's "I'm glad you asked." Not the overextended adulterer's "Please don't question me now. " After a long, potentially fertile, but finally unproductive silence, I said, "I think when you and I got married we felt we really loved each other."
And canny Dennis said, "I ain't talking about love."
The Dangerous Husband
"The order of the Kingdom is centered on the marriage bed of the King and Queen, and that bed is rooted in the earth. "
The Unsettling of America
"Maybe the bride-bed brings despair,
For each an imagined image brings
and finds a real image there;
Yet the world ends where these two things ,
Though severed , are a single light. . . "
William Butler Yeats
"Tailtean marriage-Celtic trial marriages lasting a year and a day-could only be dissolved at the place where the wedding was celebrated. The man and woman stood back to back and walked apart. "
"Americans , unlike many other nationalities , have never accepted the idea that a man should have a wife to bear his children and a mistress to provide romance. Even in the relatively new concept of couples living together without marriage , the emphasis has been on mutual emotional support. Americans want love to work. They are more committed to the ideal than any other people in history. "
"A good marriage is that in which each appoints the other guardian of his solitude."
Rainer Maria Rilke
"When marrying, ask yourself this question: Do you believe that you will be able to converse well with this person into your old age? Everything else in marriage is transitory."
"All married couples should learn the art of battle as they should learn the art of making love. Good battle is objective and honest-never vicious and cruel. Good battle is healthy and constructive and brings to a marriage the principle of equal partnership."
"The fundamental trouble with marriage is that it shakes a man's confidence in himself, and so greatly diminishes his general competence and effectiveness. His habit of mind becomes that of a commander who has lost a decisive and calamitous battle. He never quite trusts himself thereafter."
Prejudices: Second Series, 1920
"It has been discovered experimentally that you can draw laughter from an audience anywhere in the world, of any class or race, simply by walking onto a stage and uttering the words "I am a married man."
"A man marries to have a home, but also because he doesn't want to be bothered with sex and all that sort of thing."
"More superstitions pertain to marriage than to any other occasion in life."
Ethel L. Urlin
A Short History of Marriage
" 80% of the couples I know who have built a house or a boat, they build it, then they split up. Happened to me too. "
Stuart Brand (Whole Earth Catalogue)
"No matter how happily a woman may be married, it always pleases her to discover that there is a nice man who wishes that she were not." .
H. L . Mencken
"The most shining moment of my life naturally has to do with love. It is the one in which your eyes Meet those of the woman you love and you guess she loves you too. . . "
"If you are afraid of loneliness, don't marry."
A. Chekhov .
"The bonds of marriage are light and reasonable compared to the wilder and darker contracts with lawless love. "
G. K. Chesterton
"If the entire universe persuaded me to reconcile with the defendant, I would not."
Nelson Mandela (In divorce court with Winnie)
"The main difference between men and women is that men are lunatics and women are idiots."
Dame Rebecca West
"Man and woman are two locked caskets, of which each contains the key to the other."
"It is so many years now since Adam and Eve were first together in the garden, that it seems a great pity that we have not learned better how to please one another…..I wish that once, in all the time of men and women, two ambassadors could meet in a friendly mind and come to understand each other."
"The 'great' commitment is so much easier than the ordinary everyday one--and can all too easily shut our hearts to the latter. A willingness to make the ultimate sacrifice can be associated with, and even produce, a great hardness of heart."
"I would rather be a beggar and single, than a Queen and married…..I should call the wedding ring the Yoke ring."
Queen Elizabeth I
"I don’t think a prostitute is more moral than a wife, but they are doing the same thing."
Prince Philip (husband of Elizabeth II)
Quoted in Daily Mail, London 7,Dec 1988
"When I think of a merry, happy, free young girl-and look at the ailing, aching state a young wife generally is doomed to-which you can’t deny is the penalty of marriage."
Queen Victoria (1819-1901)
"London is full of women who trust their husbands. One can always recognize them. They look so unhappy."
Lady Windermere’s Fan
"In that second it dawned on me that I had been living here for eight years with a strange man and had borne him three children."
Henrik Ibsen (1828-1901)
A doll’s House
"A new kind of woman with deep-rooted values is changing the way we live, market researchers call it "neo-traditionalism." To us it’s a woman who has found her identity in herself, her home, her family….She is part of an extraordinary social movement that is profoundly changing the way Americans look at living-and the way products are marketed. The home is again the center of American life, oatmeal is back on the breakfast table, families are vacationing together, watching movies at home, playing Monopoly again. Even the perfume ads are suddenly glorifying commitment."
(Advertisement for Good Housekeeping…NYT 17 Nov 1988)
"Marriage is part of a sort of 50s revival package that’s back in vogue along with neckties and naked ambition."
A study of 853 human societies turned up this: the practice where each man has only one wife is normal in only 16%….
"Now, sisters, list to what I say; with trials this world is rife. You can't expect to miss them all; help husband get a wife! Now this advice I freely give, if exalted you will be, Remember that your husband must, be blessed with more than thee. Chorus: Then, oh, let us say, God bless the wife that strives, and aids her husband all she can to obtain a dozen wives."
(a pioneer song for Utah pioneer women)
"A man who has but one wife, and is inclined to that doctrine, soon begins to wither and dry up, while a man who goes into plurality looks fresh, young and sprightly. Why is this? Because God loves that man."
Heber C. Kimball (early pioneer elder of 'Church of Latter Day Saints)
"I am now almost daily sealing young girls to men of age and experience. Love your duties, sisters. Are you sealed to a good man? Yes, to a man of God. It is for you to bear fruit and bring forth, to the praise of God, the spirits that are born in yonder heavens and are to take tabernacles (i.e. bodies) on the earth. You have the privilege of forming tabernacles for those spirits, instead of their being brought into this wicked world that God may have a royal Priesthood, a royal people, on the earth. That is what plurality of wives is for, and not to gratify lustful desires. Sisters, do you wish to make yourselves happy? Then what is your duty? It is for you to bear children.....are you tormenting yourselves by thinking that your husbands do not love you? I would not care whether they loved a particle or not; but I would cry out, like one of old, in the joy of my heart, 'I have got a man from the Lord!" Hallelujah! I am a mother-I have borne, an image of God!"
(FROM a speech given by Elizabeth Joseph at a meeting of the Utah chapter of the NOW…She is an attorney and a journalist. living in big Water, Utah)
"I’ve often said that if polygamy didn’t exist, the modern American career woman would have invented it. Because, despite its reputation, polygamy is the one lifestyle that offers an independent woman a real chance to "have it all."
One of my heroes is Dr. Martha Hughes Cannon, a physician and a plural wife who in 1896 became the first woman legislator in any U.S. state or territory. Dr. Cannon once said "You show me a woman who thinks about something besides cook stoves and washtubs and baby flannels, and I will show you nine times out of ten a successful mother." With all due respect, Gloria Steinem has nothing on Dr. Cannon.
As a journalist, I work many unpredictable hours in a fast-paced environment. The news determines my schedule. But am I calling home, asking my husband to please pick up the kids and pop something in the microwave and get them to bed on time just in case I’m really late? Because of my plural marriage arrangement, I don’t have to worry. I know that when I have to work late my daughter will be at home surrounded by loving adults with whom she is comfortable and who know her schedule without my telling them. My eight-year-old has never seen the inside of a day-care center, and my husband has never eaten a TV dinner. And I know that when I get home from work, if I’m dog-tired and stressed-out, I can be alone and guilt-free. It’s a rare day when all eight of my husband’s wives are tired and stressed at the same time.
It’s helpful to think of polygamy in terms of a free-market approach to marriage. Why shouldn’t you or your daughters have the opportunity to marry the best man available, regardless of his marital status?
I married the best man I ever met. The fact that he already had five wives did not prevent me from doing that. For twenty-three years I have observed how Alex’s marriage to Margaret, Bo, Joanna, Diana, Leslie , Dawn, and Delinda has enhanced his marriage to me. The guy has hundreds of years of marital experience; as a result, he is a very skilled husband.
It’s no mystery to me why Alex loves his other wives. I’d worry about him if he didn’t, I did worry in the case of Delinda, whom I hired as my secretary when I was practicing law in Salt Lake City, Alex was in and out of my office a lot over the course of several months, and he never said a word about her. Finally, late one night on our way home from work, I said, "Why haven’t you said anything about Delinda?"
He said, "Why should I?"
I said, "She’s smart, she’s beautiful. What, have you gone stupid on me?"
They were married a few months later.
Polygamy is an empowering lifestyle for women. It provides me the environment and opportunity to maximize my female potential without all the tradeoffs and compromises that attend monogamy. The women in my family are friends. You don’t share two decades of experience, and a man, without those friendships becoming very special….".
"I have already stated that man is polygamous by nature, and polygamy is therefore the prevailing type of sexual relationship throughout the world. It is the legally recognized relationship of the sexes among more than two-thirds of the inhabitants of the earth, and is practiced in some form or other by all nations on the globe. A strictly monogamic people does not exist, and strict monogamy in the individual man is as uncommon as strict celibacy, even among us."
O.A. Wall M.D.
Sex and Sex Worship
"Even in civilized mankind faint traces of monogamic instinct can sometimes be perceived."
"It is very interesting to remember that when the modern bride goes to the altar in her white dress, and crowned with orange-blossoms, when she has a ring placed on her finger and afterwards eats the wedding cake, she is actually repeating the customs of her ancestress tresses in times when Europe itself was unknown.
Ethel L. Ulin
A Short History of Marriage
"Marriage is neither heaven nor hell, it is simply purgatory."
"Men and women should marry one another to live together in the joys of the body as well as in the communion of souls; but the spiritual element in the relationship of the sexes should be paramount for it implies companionship and elevation of the woman while the predominance of the sensual element in love involves the subjection, degradation and prostitution of the woman, even in wedlock. This even more appreciated among some of the so-called savage nations than among ourselves, for among the Iroquois and Hurons young couples were obliged to live together without sexual intercourse for one year after Marriage, to prove that higher motives than the gratification of sensual pleasure had brought them together."
O.A. Wall M.D.
Sex and Sex Worship 1920
"I married that I might live and go to the Ball, the Opera, the Promenade, and the Play."
Mmde d’ Houdetot
"Quinsommas, what is it you have against marriage?
"What I have….is this: in an age when the family is tending towards self-destruction, when private interests impels each of its members into divergent paths, when the need to get rich at all costs destroys the hearts sentiments, marriage seems to be a heroic futility…."
Jules Verne 1863
Paris in the 20th Century
"In Marriage a man becomes slack and selfish and under goes a fatty degeneration of the spirit."
Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)
"….We can’t overlook the fact that our society’s past efforts to fuse those historically odd bedfellows-passionate love and marriage-have failed miserably."
"…Love in marriage cannot live nor subsist unless it be mutual; and where love cannot be , there can be left of wedlock nothing but the empty husk of an outside matrimony, as undelightful and unpleasing to God as any other kind of hypocrisy."
"Top keep the fire burning brightly there’s one easy rule; Keep the two logs together, near enough to keep each other war and far enough apart-about a finger’s breadth-for breathing room. Good fire, good marriage, same rule."
Marnie Reed Crowel
Marriage: A word that should be pronounced "mirage".
"Look at the typical American family scene: Man walking around farting! Woman walking around scratching. Kids going around hollering, hey man, fuck that."
"When a girl marries she exchanges the attention of many men for the inattention of one."
"Whenever you want to marry someone, go have lunch with his ex-wife."
"God, for two people to be able to live together for the rest of their lives is almost unnatural."
"Many a marriage hardly differs from prostitution , except being harder to escape from."
"Marriage cannot cause happiness. Instead it is always torture, which man has to pay for satisfying his sex urge."
I believe woman is enslaved….by sex conventions, by motherhood and its present necessary childbearing, by wage-slavery, by middle-class morality"
"A man’s wife has more power over him than the state has."
"….great for taxes, necessary for children, but abominable for romance."
"A man is incomplete until he is married. Then he is finished."
Zsa Zsa Gabor
"Men are irrelevant. Women are happy or unhappy, fulfilled or unfulfilled, and it has nothing to do with men."
"When you’re a married man you’ll understand a good many things you don’t understand now; but whether it’s worth goin’ through so much to learn so little I don’t know."
"Marriage is slavery….Human personality must develop quite freely. Marriage impedes this development; even more than that, it often drives one to "moral crimes", not only because forbidden fruit is sweet, but because the new love, which could be perfectly legitimate , becomes a crime."
Nelly Ptashkina (1903-1928)
"But the one thing that is bow-legged
and can't put its feet together
is the rainbow.
Because one foot is the heart of a man
and the other is the heart of a woman.
And these two, as you know,
Save they leap
oh hearts, leap high!
-they touch in mid-heaven like an acrobat
and make a rainbow.
-D.H. Lawrence (from a poem "The Rainbow")
"Charms of music & female chitchat, good for one’s health; but forced to visit and receive relations, terrible loss of time."
Charles Darwin (1839)
"So they were married-to be the more together-
And found they were never again so much together,
Divided by the morning tea
By the evening paper,
By children and tradesmen’s bills."
"Among Majorcan peasants who live beyond the tourist range, no man would ever think of buying or selling so much as a hen without his wife’s approval."
"I submit to my fellow dramatists that the unfaithfulness of a wife is no longer a subject for drama, but only for comedy."
W. Somerset Maugham
"By all means marry; if you get a good wife you’ll become happy; if you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher."
"I’ve been reading a lot lately about Indian captives. One woman who had been captured by the Indians and made a squaw was resentful when she was rescued because she’d found that there was a lot more work to do as the wife of a white man."
Stephen Vicnent Benet
"The chief reason why marriage is rarely a success is that it is contacted while the partners are insane."
Dr. Joseph Collins
"You don't think one needs the 'experience' of having been married?" she asked. "Do you think it need be an experience?" replied Ursula. "Bound to be, in some way or other, " said Gudrun, coolly. "Possibly undesirable, but bound to be an experience of some sort." "Not really," said Ursula. "More likely to be the end of experience."
Women in Love
"Two pure souls fused into one by an impassioned love-friends, counselors-a mutual support and inspiration to each other amid life's struggles, must know the highest human happiness;-this is marriage; and this is the only corner-stone of an enduring home."
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
"Search as I may for the remedies to sore injustice, endless misery, and the incurable passions which trouble the union of the sexes, I can see no remedy but the power of breaking and reforming the marriage bond."
"Marriage is the ultimate goal of love. When love ceases, or is absent from the beginning, all that remains is sacrifice.. .All very well for those who understand sacrifice...there is probably no middle way between the strength of the great-hearted, and the convenient negative attitude in which the poor-spirited find refuge-or, rather, there is a middle way, and its name is despair,"
"One must love, say I, with all of one's self-or live a life of utter chastity."
"Where love is absent there can be no woman."
"I have no wish for a second husband. I had enough of the first, I like to have my own way-to lie down mistress, and get up master."
"Women want mediocre men, and men are working hard to become as mediocre as possible."
"A certain sort of talent is indispensable for people who would spend years together and not bore themselves to death."
Robert Louis Stevenson
"More marriages have been ruined by irritating habits than by un-faithfulness."
"I don’t think it would be a bad idea if we dissolved the whole idea of marriage. I think possibly we’d end up doing the same things we’re doing now anyway."
"I think ten mistresses are better than one wife. Since I’m a good husband, I can only dream."
"Marriage is the waste-paper basket of the emotions."
"It takes patience to appreciate domestic bliss; volatile spirits prefer unhappiness."
"Man is lyrical, woman epic, marriage dramatic."
"The rare occurrence of genius with domestic comfort is perfectly awful. Take Dante, the exile, who left his wife never wishing to see her more; take Tasso, wifeless; Petrarch, wifeless; Ariosto, wifeless; Milton, thrice married, but only once with much comfort; Dryden, wedded like Addison, to a title and discord; Young lives alone till past fifty; Swift's marriage is no marriage; Sterne ' s , Churchill ' s , Byron' s , Coleridge ' s , marriages broken and unhappy. Johnson had a wife loved , and lost her. It is almost enough to make women tremble at the idea of allying themselves with genius, or giving birth to it. Take the philosophers-Bacon, like his famous legal adversary, Coke, seems to have enjoyed little domestic comfort, and speaks , for, as he says, 'certain grave reasons,' disapprovingly of his partner. Our metaphysicians-Hobbes , Locke , Bentham, Butler-are as solitary as Spinoza and Kant. The celibate philosopher Hume conducts us to the other great bachelor historian-Gibbon and Macaulay; as Bishop Butler does to some of the princes of, English divinity-Hooker cajoled into marrying a shrew, Chillingworth unmarried, Hammond unmarried, Leighton unmarried, Barrow also single, I only take foremost men; the list might be swelled with monarchs and generals in marriage. "
Lacon in Council
Sterne complains that the presence of his wife stops the flow of his ideas, and finds inspiration in the society of another man' s wife. "
"Everybody marries a stranger."
"Before marriage, a man will lie awake all night thinking about something your said; after marriage, he’ll fall asleep before you finish saying it."
Helen Rowland (1876)
"If we take matrimony at its lowest, we regard it as a sort of friendship recognized by the police."
Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)
"Even if so inclined, an artist has no business to marry."
Harriet Hosmer (1830-1908)
"The capacity of women to make unsuitable marriages must be considered as the cornerstone of society."
"I have thought that men and women should never come together except in bed. There is the only place where their natural hatred for each other is not so apparent."
"Always trust your instincts; not what someone tells you, if you expect to have any happiness in love or marriage. Don't marry a man you don't know all about. If you are offended, disgusted with anything he does in the love relation, drop him at once. That's what you instincts are for! If you want a child, have it then, no matter what you circumstances may be. If you marry, and begin to hate your husband, quit before you're tempted to murder him! Marriage without love is prostitution, no matter how legal or respectable, or financially secure it may be."
"There is trouble with a wife, but it’s even worse with a woman who is not a wife."
"A husband is one who stands by you in troubles you wouldn’t have had if you hadn’t married him."
"He that hath a wife and children hath given hostages to fortune; for they are impediments to great enterprises, either of virtue or mischief."
" A woman means by unselfishness chiefly taking trouble for others; a man means not giving trouble to others. Thus each sex regards the other as basically selfish."
"there is so little difference between husbands you might as well keep the first."
Adela Rogers St. John
"Seldom, or perhaps, never, does a marriage develop into an individual relationship smoothly and without crisis; there is no coming to consciousness without pain."
"Marriage is a ghastly public confession of a strictly private intention."
"There are some good marriages, but practically no delightful ones."
Francois de La RocheFoucauld (1613-1680)
"The older I have grown, the more serious and irremediable have seemed to me the evils and disadvantages of married life as it exists among us at this time."
Evil comes to us men of imagination wearing as its mask all the virtues. I have certainly known more men destroyed by the desire to have wife and child and to keep them in comfort than I have seen destroyed by drink and harlots. "
"It is not lack of love but lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages . "
"Love is an ideal thing, marriage a real thing; a confusion of the real with the ideal never goes unpunished."
"Unmarried men very rarely speak the truth about the things that most nearly concern them; married men, never."
"I generally had to give in."
Napoleon (Speaking of his relationship with Empress Josephine)
"Marriage always demands the greatest understanding of the art of insincerity possible between two human beings."
"It destroys one’s nerves to be amiable every day to the same human being."
"Marriage….begins, not with setting up house, counting wedding presents, blowing kisses, looking at wedding groups, but with two bodies confronting one another like wrestlers."
"The chains of marriage are so heavy it takes two to carry them, and sometimes three."
"Nothing in life is as good as the marriage of true minds between man and woman. As good? It is life itself."
"Marriage is a shared political consciousness which can lead to greater joint efforts in building Socialism and increasing-- production. "
(appearing in a magazine Chinese Youth Fortnightly)
"What has become of the old-fashioned boy and girl that became one in wedlock when they went just across the spring branch from the old folks on the slope of the hill and built a house under the shadow of the old oak tree and raised a family and lived for God and humanity?"
San Angelo, Texas
The Trail Drivers of Texas
Marriage is a romance in which the hero dies in the first
"Marriage is a custom brought about by women who then proceed to live off men and destroy them, completely enveloping the man in a destructive cocoon or eating them away like a poisonous fungus on a tree."
Beverly Hills People, 1979
"Most marriages in our civilization begin with the illusion of romantic love. The best definition of romance is: the desire to be pampered. Pampering is the desire for personal recognition. In short, it is evidence of persistent infantilism and a lack of self-reliance. It is the desire to "expect from another." It is the opposite of the creative attitude, which "gives out" rather than "sucks in." In romantic love, each one expects to "get" happiness from the other. The partner is supposed to pamper him. Both sit and wait for the other one to get busy. A row begins when the show doesn't start on time.
The infantile attitude toward marriage is almost unbelievable. We can only guess at the extent of it when we realize the number of love stories that are ground out and consumed each month for books, periodicals, TV, radio, movies and the like. People would not buy such stuff if they did not believe in its probability. We find no such sale for fairy stories, which are no more fantastic. after stuffing ourselves with such material, is it any wonder that partners resent each other when they find out that marriage is mostly "When do we eat?" and related mundane questions?"
Willard & Marguerite Beecher
Beyond Success And Failure: Ways to Self-reliance and maturity
"But the majority of couples go on living together out of habit, cowardice, of fear of what-will-people-say. They are the most assiduous club members, their eyes shine and their wit sparkles only with strangers, and they distil around them an inexpressible boredom that is as perceptible as the scent of moth-balls diffused in October by a garment that has been packed away all summer long.
Finally, some couples-many more than you may think-are united by a virulent hatred which they cannot do without and which at least helps them to live intensely. This is the case of the couple in Virginia Woolf, and who wouldn't be afraid of her?"
-Genevieve Antoine Dariaux
The Men In Your Life
"It is idle to talk about abolishing the tragedy of marriage when you cannot abolish the tragedy of sex. Every flirtation is irrevocable."
The Iroquois nation consisted of sedentary women and nomadic men. While the women lived permanently in their ' longhouses' the men roamed about for months , sometimes years. Traveling was the males' full-time occupation.
" "For through many centuries have not knights and adventurers undergone incredible pains and trouble in order to come to harbor in the quiet peace of a happy marriage? Have not novelists and novel readers worked their way one volume after another in order to stop with a happy marriage? And has not one generation after another endured the troubles and complications of four acts if only there was some likelihood of a happy marriage in the final scene"
Soren Kiekegaard "
" "Hence, when one finds in our times a strong disposition 'to abolish marriage, this is not as in the Middle Ages because the unmarried life is regarded as more perfect, but the reason of it is cowardice and self-indulgence. It is also evident that such marriages as are contracted for a definite time are of no avail, since they involve the same difficulties as those which are contracted for a whole life, and at the same time are so far from bestowing the required strength for living that on the contrary they enervate the inner power of married life, relax the energy of the will, and diminish the blessing of confidence which marriage possesses. It is also clear at this .Point, and will subsequently become more so, that such association is not marriage. There is also something upon which you will agree with me entirely, for how often and how surely have your mockery and your irony hit the mark when you were denouncing what you call 'fortuitous love affairs' and the 'bad infinity' of love-when one is looking with his sweetheart out of the window, and that instant a young girl turns the corner into another street, and it occurs to him, 'It is with her I am really in love, ' but when he would trace her he is again unsettled, etc.."
"Every estate has its traitors, and so also has the estate of matrimony. I, of course, do not mean the seducers, for they have not entered into this holy estate-I hope that this investigation will encounter you in a mood which does not incline you to smile at this expression. I do not mean those who by divorce have left the ranks , for at least they have had courage to be open rebels . No , I mean those who are only rebels in thought, who do not even venture to let the thought express itself in action, those miserable married men who sit and sigh over the fact that love has long evaporated-out of their marriage; those married men who as you once said of them, sit like madmen each one in his matrimonial cell and shake the iron bars and rave about the sweetness of engagement and about the bitterness of marriage; those married men who, according to your own correct observation, are the ones who with a certain malicious joy congratulate everyone who becomes engaged. I cannot describe to you how despicable they seem to me.. .."
" Soren Kierkegaard
"We went to the council of our group-commune it was then called-and she was given me in marriage, and within a year she had borne me a son. We saw much of one another, and talked ourselves very close together. My faithful friend she became and has been always, and for a time we were passionate lovers. Always she has loved me and kept my soul full of tender gratitude and love for her; always when we met our hands and eyes clasped in friendly greeting, all through our lives from that hour we have been each other's secure help and refuge, each other's un-grudging fastness of help and sweetly frank and open speech....And after a little while my love and desire for Nettie returned as though it had never faded away.
No one will have difficulty now in understanding how that could be, but in the evil days of the world malaria, that would have been held to be the most impossible thing. I should have had to crush that second love out of my thoughts, to have kept it secret from Anna, to have lied about it to all the world. The old-world theory was there was only one love-we who float upon a sea of love find that hard to understand. The whole nature of a man was supposed to go out to the one girl or woman who possessed him, her whole nature to out to him. Nothing was left over-it was a discreditable thing to have any overplus at all. They formed a secret secluded system of two, two and such children as she bore him. All other women he was held bound to find no beauty in, no sweetness , no interest; and she likewise, in no other man. The old-time men and women went apart in couples, into defensive little houses, like beasts into little pits, and in these "homes" they sat down purposing to love, but really coming very soon to jealous watching of this extravagant mutual proprietorship. All freshness passed very speedily out of their love, out of their conversation, all pride out of their common life. To permit each other freedom was blank dishonor. That I an Anna should love, and after of love-journey together, go about our separate lives and dine at the public tables, until the advent of her motherhood, would have seemed a terrible strain upon our unmitigable loyalty. And that I should have it in me to go on loving Nettie-who loved in different manner both Varrall and me-would have outraged the very quintessence of the old convention."
In the Days of the Comet
"If you don't get married you'll never have a good man. On the other hand, if you ain't married you don't need one."
"Brought up on the infantile pablum of romance, a young couple is led to imagine that marriage is a box full of goodies that any couple can buy at the license bureau. They are reliably informed that they can sit down and eat out of this box all their lives and it will never be empty. Marriage is a box, and it can be bought for a few dollars. But it is empty. There will never be anything in it unless the partners put it there! And if they do not want it to be empty, they must put in a lot more than they are in the habit of taking out. But the young romantic who imagined it ought to be endlessly full of goodies institutes a law suit against God and the marriage partner as soon as he discovers the score of the game. he feels swindled. But he imagines the next box he buys will be full even though the first one was empty."
Willard & Marguerite Beecher
Beyond Success And Failure
NEW YORK-(AP)-A growing body of research has found that contrary to popular belief, people who live together before marriage are more likely to divorce.
According to a report released this week from the National marriage Project at Rutgers University, studies done over the past decade found the same connection between living together before marriage and splitting up after…….
"Let us then cast up the account once for all. You talk so much about the erotic embrace-what is that in comparison with the matrimonial embrace What richness of modulation in the matrimonial 'Mine! ' in comparison with the erotic! It re-echoes not only" in the seductive eternity of the instant, not only in the illusory eternity of fantasy and imagination, but in the eternity of clear consciousness, in the eternity of eternity. What power there is in the matrimonial 'Mine ! ' -for with , resolution and purpose have a deeper tone . What energy and possibility!-for what is so hard as will and what so soft? What power of movement! not merely in heaven, and duty permeates the whole body of the universe to its utmost limits and prepares the way and gives assurance that to all eternity no obstacle shall be able to unsettle love ! So let Don Juan keep the leafy bower , . and the knight the starry dome of heaven , if he can see nothing above it ; marriage has its heaven still higher up. Such is marriage; and if it is not thus, it is not the fault of God, nor of Christianity, nor of the wedding ceremony; it is not due to cursing nor to blessing, but it is man's own fault. And is it not a sin and shame that men write books in such a way as to make people perplexed about -life, make them tired of it before they begin, instead of teaching them how to live ! And this would be a painful truth , even if they were in the right , but in fact, it is a lie. They teach us to sin, and those who have not the courage for that they make equally unhappy in other ways. Unfortunately, I myself am too much influenced by the aesthetic not to know that the word ' husband' grates upon your ears. But I don't care. If the word husband has fallen into discredit and almost become laughable, it is high time for one to seek to restore it to honor. And if you say, ' Such a sight as this one never sees, although one often enough sees marriages' , this does not disquiet me; for the fact that one sees the greatness in marriage, especially in view of the fact that people do everything to belittle it. For have not you and your sort carried this thing so far that the maiden who gives her hand before the altar is regarded as a more imperfect being than these heroines in your romance with their' first love'?"
"Marriage is surely the only institution where sex without love and love without sex are accepted."
Tony Lake & Ann Hills
"We keep hetarae for our delight, concubines for the daily needs of our bodies, wives so that we may breed legitimate children and have faithful housekeepers."
"You can't leave the dishes for later, was the dishes badly, not use soap, drink straight from the container, make crumbs without wiping them up (now, not later) or load the dishwasher according to the method, that seems most sensible to you....You can't not make the bed. You can't not express appreciation when the other person makes the bed even if you don't care. You can't sleep apart, you can't go to bed at different times, you can't fall asleep on the couch without getting woken up to go to bed. You can't eat in bed. You can't get out of bed right away after sex. You can't have insomnia without being grilled about what's really bothering you."
Against Love: A polemic
"Domestic coupleDom is modern love's mandatory barracks. Domestic coupleDom is the boot camp for compliant citizenship."
"And then all the pettiness marriage brings with it. 0 yes , here you will be ready enough to agree with me , but at the same time I will pray God to deliver you from it . No , there is nothing that educates so much as the petty. There is a period in a man's life when he ought to keep it at a distance; but there is also a period when it is good, and it requires a great soul to save one ' soul out of the petty-but one can do
"Nothing anybody tells you about marriage helps."
"Marriage is for women the commonest mode of livelihood, and the total amount of undesired sex endured by women is probably greater in marriage than in prostitution."
"Man and women, unhappily mated, live together in a condition of contention, strife, jealousy, hate, and bring children into the world. These children are heirs, in degree, to the misery, unrest and quarrelsome moods of their unfortunate parents. Such children are terribly handicapped for the game of life."
Elbert Hubbard Oct, 1913
"Yet, when two souls meet, with their horoscopes so arranged in Earthly time and cosmic place that the Moon of the woman is on the same degree as the Sun of the Man, then there is no alternative but for them to draw together, and marry. To marry, as the cabbalistic lore insists, requires that man and woman look upon each other face to face, so that no other gaze can weave its eyebeams between the two. The whole cosmos conspires to bring two lovers together. Because of the grandeur of this conspiracy, if an end is to be made of love; if the two are to be dragged apart; if the archetypes are to be wrenched from their places in Heaven-then, such a deed must be done by the gods. This is why the marriage ceremony warns the congregation that the heaven-wrought union they have witnessed should not be pulled asunder by man."
"Women used to be told that they would learn to love their husbands after marriage, however disagreeable they might find them at first. But some women began demanding that the possibility be proved before the wedding, or at least that the man should first convince them that he loved them. Once this happened, men lost control of courtship, because there was no technology for falling in love, no institution which could arrange it. The results can best be traced in the history of courtship in the USA, the least secretive, the most varied and probably the most influential world-wide. Americans were already complaining of a crisis of masculinity in the 1860s. But every generation, conscious only of how it differs from its parents and its children, forgets how old are most of the subjects of argument between men and women, how humans persist in banging their heads against the same wall.
William Alcott, in a book entitled The Young Wife (1833), wrote that there was a 'very general opinion' that 'the love of husband and wife must after marriage necessarily begin to decline'. Courting couples of the time have left letters bemoaning 'the almost universal unhappiness of married persons'. Brides in particular were frightened by the 'great and unknown duties for which I feel incompetent', not only domestic duties, but the need to turn their husbands into 'virtuous and happy' men. 'It is awful thus to bind myself for life." 'Grateful joy' did indeed balance the 'fearful responsibilities' and the feeling that intimacy was often quickly lost. So two centuries ago women had already started working on modifying their links with men."
An Intimate History of Humanity
"There is no subject on which more dangerous nonsense is talked and thought than marriage."
-George Bernard Shaw
Book: "Matrimony" by Joshua Henkin
Book: "Monogamy" by Adam Phillips
Book: "I Don't: A Contrarian History of Marriage" by Susan Squire
Book: "The Physiology of Marriage" by Honore de Balzac
See: HOLDING UP THE SKY TOGETHER by Mary Catherine Bateson…Civilization, May/June 1995
Book: "Misogyny in the Western Philosophical Tradition" Ed by Beverly Clack
Book: "Misogyny: The World's Oldest Prejudice" by Jack Holland
Book: "Not To People Like Us: Hidden Abuse in Upscale Marriages" by Susan Weitzman
Book: "What is Marriage For?" by E.J. Graff
Book: "Marriage, A History: From Obedience to Intimacy, or How Love conquered Marriage" by Stephanie Coontz
Book: "Curious Customs of Sex & Marriage" by George Ryley Scott
Book: "The Myth of Monogamy: Fidelity and Infidelity in Animals and People" by D.P. Barash & J.E. Lipton
Book: "The Marriage Quotation Book" edited by Jennifer Taylor
Book: "A History of the Wife" by Marilyn Yolom & Harper Collins
Book: "The 501 Best and Worst Things Ever Said About Marriage" by Ronald B Schwartz
Book: "Either/Or" Soren Kierkegaard
Book: "The Bitch in the House" Cathi Hanauer,ed
Book: "VoiceMale: What Husbands Really Think About heir Marriages, Their Wives, Sex, Housework, and Commitment" by Neil Chetnik
Book: "Married Women Who Love Women" by Carren Strock
Book: "Against Love: A Polemic" by Laura Kipnis
Book: "Life Sentence: The Guy's Survival Guide to Getting Engaged & Married" by J.D. Smith
Book: What is Marriage For?" by E.J. Graff
Book: "Why Men Marry Some Women and Not Others: The Fascinating Research That Can Land You the Husband of Your Dreams." by John T. Molloy
Book: "The Red Rose Girls: An Uncommon Story of Art and Love." by Alice A. Carter
Book: "Marriage, a History: From Obedience to Intimacy or How Love Conquered Marriage" by Stephanie Coontz