Saturday, July 21, 2007

Another Recipe for World Peace: Sorting this Love and Chemistry Business.

Dearest Friends,

I"ve been sitting on top of this passage* from Elizabeth Gilbert's memoir, "Eat, Pray, Love" for over a month now. (Yes, my "draft box" shows June 18th as the date that I typed up this excerpt from the book that speaks to my heart, spirit, loins, and all senses of divine longing!) But: What to write about this? How to create a precursory passage that honors the many ways these words inspire me?

Today, stumbling upon the Muslim, Christian, Jewish Prayer for world peace, (that I also blogged about) I had this thought: "How is really sweet love-making another recipe for world peace?" Of course I laughed. I think it's funny. And a question getting at a truth.

* * *
What would the world look like if we could honestly identify where the magnetic forces in us were located, and then honor them?

The beloved and amazing Ms. Gilbert has done her work toward this end. She got out of a marriage that wasn't good, and dedicated her life toward a peaceful existence - loving herself, praying and meditating daily, and paying attention to her callings. She wrote a sweet-a-- book that depicts all this. It's truly a gorgeous documentation of one woman's transformation of her life.

The following is a passage then that, for me, hits so squarely upon a human need to honor and sort this love and chemistry business. I mean here, Gilbert is talking about physical, sexual chemistry: that desire that comes straight out of the animal kingdom. As she notes, it either exists or it doesn't. Our job is to identify it, and then move on: embracing and honoring this vital thing that liberates us, or find out where it is and how we want to honor it. I'm passing this excerpt on, to underscore the beauty and truth of her words, and always: to extend them to all facets of our presences and purposes on the planet.

Where does chemistry live in us? What magnetic forces pull us forward? What inspires commitment and love and giggling, and triggers that knowing joy that comes in claiming our own emancipation? Think about how peaceful and awesome our homes would be if we embraced the freedom that is already present in our bodies? To claim that, is to claim the divine knowing in us, I do believe. And in doing so: we might get further down this path as lovers, love-makers, peace-negotiators - no matter what our station in life is.

Enjoy! Go out and buy Gilbert's Book! She rocks! She knows things. We are friends, even though we've never met. Smiles.


*From "Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert
I tell him, "You, know, it's funny, but I'd been seriously thinking before I met you that I might be alone and celibate forever. I was thinking maybe I would live the life of a spiritual contemplative."
He says, "Contemplate this, darling....," and then proceeds to detail with careful specificity the first, second, third, fourth and fifth things he is planning to do with my body when he gets me alone in his bed again. I wobble away from the phone call a little woozy in the knees, amused and bamboozled by all this new passion.
* * *
When we return to Ubud, I go straight back to Felipe's house and don't leave his bedroom for approximately another month. This is only the faintest of exaggerations. I have never been loved and adored like this before by anyone, never with such pleasure and single-minded concentration. Never have I been so unpeeled, revealed, unfurled and hurled through the event of lovemaking.
One thing I do know about intimacy is that there are certain natural laws which govern the sexual experience of two people, and that these laws cannot be budged any more than gravity can be negotiated with. To feel physically comfortable with someone else's body is not a decision you can make. It has very little to do with how two people think or act or talk or even look. The mysterious magnet is either there, buried somewhere deep behind the sternum, or it is not. When it isn't there (as I have learned in the past, with heartbreaking clarity) you can no more force it to exist than a surgeon can force a patient's body to accept a kidney from the wrong donor. My friend Annie says it all comes down to one simple question, "Do you want your belly pressed against this person's belly forever -- or not?"
Chapters 98 and 99; pages 292 -294

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