March 12, 2017

THE TRIUMPHS OF SEX: A DEBATE

 The history of humanity is replete with men and women of power and fame, whose fortunes and careers got sacrificed on the altar of sex. From Pompey and Anthony (Roman Generals) to David and Sampson (Biblical heroes) to Bill Clinton (former US President), Lee Harvey Swaggart (World re-nowned American tele-evangelist) as well as Archbishop Milingo, Biodun Fatoyinbo and of most recent Apostle John Suleiman (Pastor, Omega Fire Ministries), are few incredible memories. Yet, it seems the major problem has not been about answering ‘How we should have sex,’ but rather WHY we have sex.

Virgins are scared at even the thought,

The rectum of homosexuals cry for help,

Parents simmer and hope it occurs well,

Recipients of this ancient practice ever

Searching to know, feel and understand,

Why in so few a moment comes hence,

The satisfaction of either joy or regret.

Below is a debate about the triumphs of sex by D. F. Effiong and Kenneth Odoh.

D. F. EFFIONG:

It is my strongest opinion that words (including fornication or any other, that limits man from enjoying his/her sexual omnivorous lives) do not find complete meaning in etymologies but also in history. It is unquestionably obvious that religion seems to be the one factor that, for now, check- mates and in a way propose punishments to the illicit or indiscriminate usage of the ‘co-operative organs.’ I have observed how timid creatures (male or female human specie) burst out of their timidity the moment, hour or day they enjoy penetration of any kind. It befuddles me greatly to see an overwhelming courage, yawning and daring laughter as well as a piercing desire for social interaction by those who have had a sexual breakthrough. Oh, dear, you need to see the glow dropping from the face of a newly wedded couple and the boldness emanating with the eternal smile from the physique of the dis-virgined folk. This is our natural milieu. After this comes the great question;

 AT WHAT POINT IN HISTORY DID HUMANS CREATE A DIVIDE BETWEEN THE SACRED AND PROFANE IN THAT WHICH IS NATURAL TO THEM? WHAT WERE THE UNDERLINING REASONS, AS WELL AS THE SUPPOSED BENEFITS?

We are more clearly linked to the Chimps and Bonobos than the African elephant is to the Indian elephant as Jared Diamond pointed out in one of his books. The standard narrative of human sexual evolution is that, as part of human nature from the beginning of our species’ time, men have leased women’s reproductive potential by providing them with certain goods and services like meat, protection, shelter, etc and in exchange, women have offered fidelity. This of course sets men and women up in an oppositional relationship. The war between d sexes is built right into our DNA. According to Calcilda and Christopher Ryan, the fierce egalitarianism of our ancestors (hunter-gatherer groups) was the best way to mitigating risk in a foraging context.
Humans are among the only species on the planet where the female is available for sex throughout the menstrual cycle, whether she is menstruating, post-menopausal or already pregnant. This is vanishingly rare among other mammals. The average humans have sex 1,000 times per birth (father or no father) a figure we share with chimps and bonobos. Humans and bonobos too  are the only mammals that have sex face to face (missionary style…other styles evolved) when both of them are alive. Humans also have the thickest penis in the primate family, no wonder humans make noise when they have sex and it is usually the female who makes the loudest noise – known as female copulatory vocalization. Infact Meg Ryan is the world’s most famous female copulatory Vocalizer. Hence, to argue that our ancestors were sexual omnivores is no more a criticism of monogamy than to argue that our ancestors were dietary omnivores is a criticism of vegetarianism. What about the issue of religion and morality? 

Now let us look at history. The women of Mosuo from southwestern China alongside their male counterpart keep as many partners as possible. The one who eventually gets pregnant is being taken care of by the brothers and sisters. They have no shame, no one gossips, its normal. In the Amazon, there are many tribes which practice what anthropologists call “partible paternity.” They believe that a fetus is made of accumulated semen. So a woman who wants a smart baby would have lots of sex with the smart guys in other to get their essence into the baby. Tell me about religion and morality again please!
Finally, i do strongly feel that the decisions we make about our sex lives are based on certain principles that the society has set aside for reasons that might not be natural to man. We know monogamy is one of them, as well as the concept of sin and fornication. Our evolved sexuality has come into contradictions even in this contemporary period. GO AND HAVE SEX- the first feeling is relieve and satisfaction (what we actually feel), the second is guilt and regret (what we should feel). CONTRADICTIONS! My opinion here I think, is to go beyond our Victorian sense of human sexuality that stiffens us and conflates desire with property rights, shame and confusion in place of understanding and empathy.  We know that the body does have its inherent trajectories. My argument here is to question, if not debunk the shame that comes with our desires, even sex. Your choice should not destroy others!

“All that we can surmise of humankind’s genetic history argues for a more liberal sexual morality, in which sexual practices is to be regarded first as bonding devices and second as a means of procreation.” E. O. Wilson.

KENNETH ODOH

It is no longer news that moral liberalism stemming from individualistic expressivism has contributed tremendously towards  the diminishing  good moral sense in our present society.However, let me presume that the above posted piece which tries to tenaciously publicize postmodern moral liberalism is meant to ignite, in this platform, the intellectual enthusiasm needed for a critical intellection  rather than to promote  obscurantism. I would like to sincerely assert that any so-called  standard narrative of human sexual evolution which refutes  finalistic trajectory of  that human sexual evolution, and  also denies the end to which  finalistic trajectory tees , is aberrant in outlook. 

ON THE QUESTION : AT WHAT POINT DID HUMANS CREATE  DIVIDE BETWEEN THE  SACRED AND THE PROFANE IN THAT WHICH IS NATURAL TO THEM? 

My point of departure in an attempt  to answer the above  question is this : should the perceived divide between the sacred and the profane in that which is natural to man be ascribeable to man? 

My honest answer is “NO”, since  it is self-evident that the  perceived divide between what is holy and what is profane in that which is natural to man is created by Him (God) who infused into man that which is natural to man.Permit me to buttress my stand by using Thomistic view and by defining some conceptual keywords of analysis: Law ,Eternal law and Natural law. According to Thomas Aquinas, law is a dictate of the reason from a ruler to the ruled. For Thomas, this dictate which  is an idea found in the Intellect of the ruler tends not only to regulate but also to ensure well-ordered functioning of the community under the ruler’s control . 

 Eternal law, for Thomas, is a dictate of the Eternal reason from God (a Ruler) to the universe (the community  which He rules). Thomas sees the Natural law as the participation of the eternal law in the rational creature. St Thomas also opines that Eternal law is  enshrined and engrained in  human nature, and that all human beings are expected to reflect this law through their nature, as they drive towards their proper ends.All lower and higher animals have sexual inclinations. However, in order for human inclination to perfectly attain its desired end, it must follow some laid down principles, and the  end  towards which this human inclination tees must be the  intention of God who instilled such inclination into mankind. Unlike the sexual inclination in lower animals, sexual inclination in higher animals (human beings)  is guided by rationality, and it also tends towards an end (procreation) through a means (Sex).

If human sexual practices were  not regulated by eternal law, they would not have been different from the  unregulated and irrational sexual activities of the lower animals.  Sadly, attempts by secular moral liberalists to redefine sex has led to the  promotion of not only  notorious concubinage and cohabitation, but also all kinds of aberrant sexual practices like homosexuality, transgenderism, bestiality,  etc in our society. For me, I think that it is only in marital circles that good sexual practices should be considered morally good. However, these good sexual practices should, within the context of marriage, express both the unitive and procreative significances of  natural sexual intercourse between man and woman, and also be primarily seen as  a means of procreation in marital circles.

Photo credit: internet.
THE DEBATE CONTINUES…WHAT DO YOU THINK?

My name is David Francis and the nature of my engagements include:

Philosophy (University of Jos, Nigeria); Research Consultant (St. Albert’s Institute, Fayit-Fadan, Kaduna, Nigeria); Editor (Sapientia African Leadership Formation Programme, e. V Address: Badenstedter Street, 99 30453, Hannover, Germany); Editor (African Home Reintegration, Spinnereistrasse 1A 30449, Hannover, Germany); Literature (S. E. M. S. Nassarawa State, Nigeria); Former Associate Editor, “Periscope Magazine,” Abuja and Columnist, “Seekers Delight Magazine,” Kaduna.

I simply try to question the ‘happy darkness’ by encouraging more hands to minimize ignorance. Just a dose of knowledge, is enough in training the mind, to conform to nothing except truth. Let’s ride this train together!

Send a message, or for inquiries to  francisaquaticus2@gmail.com

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