Kudos to those growing groups who are taking back the innocence, intelligence and dignity of men and women in movements seeking to overturn sexual violence and domestic (read criminal) abuse in relationships. Check out these empowering PSA campaigns like "It's On Us" and "NO MORE". So now, when the popularity of the book and movie “Fifty Shades of Grey” comes along, it would seem to be a backward step.
What is it one buys into when buying tickets to see the movie or read the book? More than a controlled fantasy that one can turn on and off, one buys into the whole facade of a carnivorous male gender and a vulnerable female gender. It's a fantasy - a sensational lie some would say. It is not sustainable, and even damaging.
From the article, The truth about the Fifty Shades of Grey Movie :"The reality is that if you take away the glamour, “Fifty Shades” is just a sensationalized lie, telling women that they can, and should, fix violent and controlling men by being obedient and devoted, and that, somehow, this is romantic."
What is needed here? A friend wrote: "Personally, I would rather see young men and women (and teenagers) be influenced by more simple, yet compassionate ideas... "
What is needed here? How about an image of men and women that portrays relationships that are balanced, respectful, pure and passionate and empowered by our highest sense of what is good? This is not only sustainable, it is the very cement of civilization. The images perpetrated by porn, and glamorized porn, degrade men as well as women, weaken our institutions and add to mental stress and illness.
These ideas from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by reformer and author Mary Baker Eddy, reveal the basis for all strong, healthy and thriving relationships:
Union of the masculine and feminine qualities constitutes completeness. The masculine mind reaches a higher tone through certain elements of the feminine, while the feminine mind gains courage and strength through masculine qualities. These different elements conjoin naturally with each other, and their true harmony is in spiritual oneness. Both sexes should be loving, pure, tender, and strong. ( from p. 57)
Kindred tastes, motives, and aspirations are necessary to the formation of a happy and permanent companionship. The beautiful in character is also the good, welding indissolubly the links of affection. (from p. 60)
Unselfish ambition, noble life-motives, and purity, — these constituents of thought, mingling, constitute individually and collectively true happiness, strength, and permanence. There is moral freedom in Soul ( a synonym for God, Truth and Love).( from p. 58)
Here, moral is defined as a transitional quality – transitioning to spiritual understanding and wisdom.
Moral. Humanity, honesty, affection, compassion, hope, faith, meekness, temperance. (from p. 115)
The wealth of well-being and satisfaction we get from our relationships is born out of honesty and unselfishness. This is what emboldens us to stand up for what is good, and to perpetuate acts of tenderness, to stop the silence around violence and the violence itself, and let our lives return to peace and progress.
Other posts on purity, power and courage:
Kim C Korinek, CSB
banner photo (c) Micah Korinek; other photos by Gabe Korinek, Kim Korinek, Brad Crooks. Leslie Larsen (c) 2016