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Personal orgasm

[en]

Many human activities began as social ones and were shared and with time got transformed into individual and personal ones. This happened especially with the media and technologies. Two examples: transportation, where cars (which are mostly used as a means of personal transportation) imposed themselves on other forms of travel; and the media, where TV, for instance, started being viewed collectively, went on to a TV set for every family, then to one for every single member of the family.

At the root of this there are obvious commercial reasons: the more a product becomes invidividual the more the sales. But this is not the only reason. Commercial needs are coemergent with psychic transformation – the one affects the other. The tendency toward individuality also develops in areas which were “traditionally planned” to be shared.

One of those is sexuality.  Masturbation is an evergreen activity, but it hasn’t always been accepted historically. It has been condemned for a long time, mostly through religious rulings, even scaring boys that it would make them blind. Even though masturbation is still not socially accepted in many parts of the world, especially for women, during the so-called sexual revolution of the 1960s and 1970s women established a more direct and aware relationship with their bodies, which included the right to masturbate withour guilt feelings.

But then, as anything which starts as counterculture and a spontaneous social movement, once it becomes somewhat accepted in the mainstream, it then becomes part of the economy, which makes products out of it.

Masturbation is expanding. Among the reasons is the AIDS emergency which produces suspicion compared to the “golden years” of free love; another one is the fast growth of singles and in general of short-term relationships.

Thus a big market is being opened, a market made of objects, porn, sex toys of the more variegate kinds, even remote-controlled and technologically complex sex machines, the Rolls Royce of sex toys. This phenomenon can be creative, fun, and liberating, but at the same time marks an anthropological transformation.

At first glance it seems that sex is becoming technological, but actually it is technology which in the process of digitalization of reality is assimilating human activities more and more. Social life is moving in a digital realm through social networks, the search of a partner and sexual meetings through the dating sites sites, and human biology is seen as a long list of DNA codes.

Becoming part of the big hotchpotch of technology, sex in turn is becoming “personal” and “at click range,” where pleasure, according to what technology offers, has to be immediate, personalized, with various options and, of course, efficient: a guaranteed and quick orgasm. A long wait for orgasm would be as annoying as waiting for a website with a slow Internet connection.

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Molte attività umane sono iniziate come sociali e condivise e nel tempo si sono trasformate in individuali e personali. Questo è avvenuto in particolare per i media e le tecnologie. Due esempi per tutti: il trasporto, dove l’automobile si è imposta sulle altre forme di trasporto ed è perlopiù utlizzata come forma di trasporto personale, e i media, dove ad esempio la televisione, iniziata in forma di visione collettiva, è passata ad una televisione per ogni famiglia e poi ad una per ogni componente del nucleo familiare.

Alla base di questo vi sono ovviamente ragioni commerciali per le quali più un prodotto diviene individuale maggiori sono le vendite, ma non è la sola ragione. Le necessità commerciali sono coemergenti con la trasformazione della psiche, l’una influenza l’altra. La tendenza verso l’individualità si sviluppa anche su aree che erano “tradizionalmente progettati” per la condivisione.

Una di queste è la sessualità. La masturbazione è un’attività sempreverde ma non è sempre stata accettata nella storia. Perlopiù tramite dettami religiosi, è stata condannata per lungo tempo, fino al punto di terrorizzare i ragazzi dicendo loro che sarebbero diventati ciechi. Anche se in molte parti del mondo la masturbazione non è tutt’ora accettata socialmente, in particolare per le donne, durante la cosiddetta rivoluzione sessuale degli anni ’60 e ’70 le donne hanno instaurato una relazione più diretta e consapevole con i loro corpi, includendo in questa il diritto a masturbarsi senza sensi di colpa.

Ma poi, come qualsiasi cosa che inizia come controcultura a partire da un movimento sociale spontaneo, nel momento in cui diventa un minimo accettata, entra come parte dell’economia e vengono creati dei prodotti al riguardo.

Ecco che si apre allora tutto un mercato fatto di oggetti, pornografia, sex toys delle specie più variegate, anche con il controllo remoto via Internet da parte del partner, e sex machines ingegneristicamente complesse, le Rolls Royce dei sex toys. Il fenomeno può risultare creativo, divertente e liberatorio, ma allo stesso tempo segna una trasformazione antropologica.

A prima vista sembra che il sesso stia diventando tecnologico, ma in realtà è la tecnologia che nel suo processo di digitalizzazione della realtà sta assorbendo sempre più  attività umane. La vita sociale si sposta in un ambito digitale con i social networks, la ricerca del partner e degli incontri sessuali sui siti appositi, e la biologia umana viene vista come una lunga lista di codici DNA.

Diventando parte del gran calderone della tecnologia, il sesso a sua volta si sta rendendo “personal” e “a portata di clic”, dove il piacere, secondo le offerte della tecnologia, dev’essere immediato, personalizzato, con opzioni variegate e naturalmente, efficiente: l’orgasmo deve essere garantito e veloce. Una lunga attesa per l’orgasmo diventerebbe fastidiosa quanto l’attesa di un sito web con una lenta connessione ad Internet.

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Cybervirgins

The tendency of spreading sex has been adopted by many magazines of large circulation and by other media such as TV and Internet news sites. Magazines with large circulation have a well-defined and advertised section of “tips, tricks and secrets” concerning sex. It reminds me of the time when I was publishing computer science books where the tricks of using the software were revealed.

Apart from the fact that communication about sex has become technicized, giving space for tricks and the advice of “experts,” perhaps for exorcising the intense and inner engaging nature of sexuality, it remains a fact that sexual messages are present in a pervasive way in every media. It seems that the world is like a global “Sex and the City” set, made of free and varied sexual meetings. If this can be true in some areas of the world, the planetary diffusion of sexual messages culturally does not find much similarity worldwide. The reality is that at least two-thirds of the world lives in a rather restrictive, traditional, and sometimes even very repressive culture regarding sex.

The massive process of worldwide urbanization caused the appearance of a growing number of singles not only in the West but even in every emerging country, especially in Asia and the Middle East. In Shanghai, Delhi, Seoul, Bangkok, Dubai, Manila or Jakarta, the growing class of office employees is formed mainly of women, connected to the Internet.

They often live alone or with female roommates, are members of Internet social networks and dating sites, like Western women. During breaks at work they chat and a growing percentage connects to the Net from home also. This seems to be the lifestyle of many women in the West, but there is a fundamental difference: they live in a traditional society as far as sexual roles are concerned. Even though some countries, like Thailand, are well-known for their hot night life, the majority of people follow very traditional behavior and lifestyles.

As a contrast to their upbringing, a culture without filters can sneak through their computer screen (which has almost nothing to do with tradition) of virtual meetings, erotic chats and porno sites, sometimes extreme ones. The ease of getting in contact with anyone through dating sites is a great difference between ordinary reality and what one lives online on the screen. The gap between traditional culture and the online becomes more and more wide because the culture of a whole country evolves more slowly compared to the speed of technological and online transformation. A great dichotomy is being created between the way one should be and appear in a certain manner according to the requirements of traditional culture and what the Net offers.

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Writer’s block

thinking-man[en]

This is an expanded version of an older post.

Many writers and probably many bloggers are faced with the typical writer’s block. While this block doesn’t affect many writers who operate in a productivity setting, it does afflict those who need the spark of creativity to express something bright and new.

True creative expression goes through cycles; the similarity between creativity and procreativity is not just linguistic. Both follow cycles and peaks like the female reproductive cycle.

Parecchi scrittori e probabilmente diversi blogger affrontano il tipico blocco dello scrittore. Mentre questo blocco colpisce pochi scrittori che operano in un ambiente produttivo, tipicamente coinvolge invece coloro che necessitano di un lampo creativo per esprimere qualcosa di fresco e innovativo.

L’autentica espressione creativa passa attraverso dei cicli; le somiglianze tra la creatività e la procreatività non sono solo linguistiche. Entrambe seguono cicli e vette come il ciclo riproduttivo femminile.

In the astrological tradition, both the creative and sexual expressions are at home in the fifth house, telling us that symbolically the creative forces in the universe derive from the same archetype. People who have high libidos often have some kind of artistic or creative quality as well.

The Latin word oestrus was used to mean “frenzy, driven by desire, mad impulse.” There’s a compulsive quality in this, a drive to act, just as compulsive as sex can be, being the most (pro)creative energy in the world.

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Questa è una versione espansa di un post che avevo pubblicato in precedenza.

Parecchi scrittori e probabilmente diversi blogger affrontano il tipico blocco dello scrittore. Mentre questo blocco colpisce pochi scrittori che operano in un ambiente produttivo, tipicamente coinvolge invece coloro che necessitano di un lampo creativo per esprimere qualcosa di fresco e innovativo.

L’autentica espressione creativa passa attraverso dei cicli; le somiglianze tra la creatività e la procreatività non sono solo linguistiche. Entrambe seguono cicli e vette come il ciclo riproduttivo femminile.

Nella tradizione astrologica, entrambe le espressioni creative e sessuali si trovano nella quinta casa. La simbologia ci suggerisce che le forze creative dell’universo derivano dallo stesso archetipo. Le persone con una forte libido spesso possiedono anche delle capacità creative o artistiche.

In the astrological tradition, both the creative and sexual expressions are at home in the fifth house, telling us that symbolically the creative forces in the universe derive from the same archetype. People who have high libidos often have some kind of artistic or creative quality as well.

The latin word oestrus was used to mean frenzy, driven by desire, mad impulse. There’s a compulsive quality in this, a drive to act, just as compulsive as sex can be, being the most (pro)creative energy in the world.

The process of creative revelation and the eureka effect has been documented by neurophysiological researches. Joseph Chilton Pearce in The Biology of Transcendence (Inner Traditions International. Rochester. 2002), referring to Margharita Laski’s work on Ecstasy, illustrates the six stages of the discovery process: 1. Asking the question. 2. Looking for the answer. 3. Hitting the plateau period. 4. Giving up the search for a solution. 5. The answer comes as the eureka effect. 6. Translating the discovery in a way that can be understood and shared by others.

This six stage process involves different parts of the brain. Both brain hemispheres are involved, as well as the emotional-limbic brain, which is itself the connection to the heart. Without the passion of the heart, the creative discovery seems difficult to reach. It reminds me of a book by Almaas saying that “Love of truth for its own sake is actually the expression of essential heart.”

What is usually not accepted in our hyper-productive culture that fears silence and the void is that fourth stage of giving up the search for a solution. Even though everybody has the experience of finding a solution or an insight when the mind wasn’t actively searching for it, the general attitude is to push for a solution, not accepting that empty stage. Quoting Joseph Chilton Pearce, “The corpus callosum can complete the circuitry only when the left hemisphere is inactive, when the analytical and critical processes of mind are suspended.” Without knowing anything about neurophysiology, most of the spiritual teachers say that there is a stage of giving up the search and that the condition of not-knowing is necessary for any true insight on ourselves. So the eureka effect path seems to apply both to personal insights and to scientific or artistic works. Given this vision, the writer’s block is not just natural, is even needed for every important creative outcome.

La parola latina oestrus veniva usata per significare frenesia, essere guidati dal desiderio, impulso folle. C’è una qualità compulsiva in ciò, una spinta all’azione, quanto può essere compulsiva la sessualità, come l’energia più fortemente (pro)creativa.

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Disembodying at broadband speed

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Overcoming our identification with the body has traditionally been a mystical path, but that took place after having had a fully integrated body-mind-soul connection and having become aware of the full range of emotions and bodily sensations.

The split between body and mind in our society is still present and is further pushed away by long computer use where our bodies are involved in a minimal way, removing the connection in a premature manner.

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Tradizionalmente, il superare l’identificazione col corpo era parte di un percorso mistico, ma questo avveniva dopo aver integrato completamente la connessione tra il corpo, la mente e l’anima e dopo essersi resi consapevoli di tutta le sfera delle emozioni e delle sensazioni corporee.

La scissione tra mente e corpo è tutt’ora presente nella nostra società e viene ulteriormente ampliata da un uso prolungato del computer dove i corpi sono coinvolti in modo minimale, togliendo la connessione in modo prematuro.

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Cool, hot media and gender attraction

Dali - A Couple with Their Heads Full of Clouds[en]

During these very hot days in Italy a lightweight article about media and gender relationships. Marshall McLuhan as a media analyst coined the terms hot and cool media.

Hot media are those media that express an analytical, precise and well-defined message. Most of the visual media, especially the high-definitions one, are hot media. The message conveyed by hot media usually doesn't need much participation from the audience. For instance a movie is hotter than television since has a higher definition. Other examples of hot media are radio, the photograph, a lecture.

Cool media are those media that need the participation of the audience. Comic books and cartoons are cool media since the audience has to fill missing details. A seminar is considered a cool media since it requires an active role of the participants.

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In questi giorni di gran calura, un articolo leggero sui media e i rapporti uomo donna. Lo studioso dei media Marshall McLuhan ha coniato le espressioni media “caldi” e “freddi”.

I media caldi sono quelli che trasmettono un messaggio analitico, preciso e ben definito. La maggior parte dei media visivi – soprattutto quelli ad alta definizione – sono media caldi. Il messaggio trasmesso dai media caldi di solito non ha bisogno di molta partecipazione da parte del pubblico. Per esempio, un film è più caldo della televisione, perché possiede una definizione più elevata. Altri esempi di media caldi sono la radio, la fotografia, una conferenza.

I media freddi sono quei media per i quali è necessaria la partecipazione del pubblico. I fumetti e i cartoni animati sono media freddi, perché il pubblico deve riempire i dettagli mancanti. Un seminario è considerato un media freddo, perché richiede ai partecipanti un ruolo attivo.

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Welcome writer’s block

Writer[en]

Many writers and probably many bloggers are faced with the typical writer’s block. While this block doesn’t affect many writers that operate in a productivity setting, it does afflict writers who need the spark of creativity to express something bright and new.

True creative expression goes through cycles; the similarity between creativity and procreativity is not just linguistic. Both follow cycles and peaks like the female reproductive cycle.
[/en][it]

Parecchi scrittori e probabilmente diversi blogger affrontano il tipico blocco dello scrittore. Mentre questo blocco colpisce pochi scrittori che operano in un ambiente produttivo, tipicamente coinvolge invece coloro che necessitano di un lampo creativo per esprimere qualcosa di fresco e innovativo.

L’autentica espressione creativa passa attraverso dei cicli; le somiglianze tra la creatività e la procreatività non sono solo linguistiche. Entrambe seguono cicli e vette come il ciclo riproduttivo femminile.[/it] (more…)

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