Dying for Affection
I just finished holding someone from the Middle East who is here in the US for graduate school. Like all the people I hold, he is a beautiful guy, open-hearted, with deep, soulful eyes, thoughtful, curious. It was really a beautiful session, longer than most, almost two hours (which in my experience is the absolute upper limit for sessions where we are really engaged and paying attention to what is happening.)
It was a diverse practice, a mixture of yin and yang postures. The opening connect took a very long time, relatively speaking; I could feel a great deal of fear, uncertainty, and hesitation mixed with curiosity and desire. The practice was largely non-erotic but with a sudden, powerful burst of erotic energy in the middle that carried us for about twenty minutes before subsiding. (Those bursts often happen at about the same place they do in symphonies: about two thirds of the way through.) As is the case in Touch Practice, the erotic was something we eventually passed through, like a doorway; without becoming sexual, it produced a deeper connection which eventually led away from the erotic, or past the erotic, to a deeper non-erotic connection.
Our practice was fully clothed, then partially clothed, then naked, pretty much exactly in thirds as we went through the time. He fell asleep in my arms, deeply asleep, which I allowed to continue longer than I might normally–somewhere around 15 minutes, I’d guess. (I use a variety of music in Touch Practice, but all of it is music that I have used hundreds of times, and I know exactly where I am in the timing of a session by where I am in the music.)
He sighed, a lot, almost a faint crying without tears. He purred when he slept, a very light, faint snore. He got up out of horizontal positions the way most people do, like a cat who has fallen asleep in a mound of catnip: dopey and clumsy. We had the most amazing closing, solidly in the “puppy body” state, soft, non-defended, connected. We separated with the most amazing sense of gratitude and awe at what we had just co-created together.
Now there’s a buzz kill.
As we continued to speak, eventually sitting side by side on the bed, he told me of the reality of his life. In the past five years, he has come to the realization that he is oriented towards men. When he finishes grad school, he will be expected to return to his home country. He will get married, to a woman. He said, “I don’t know how I’ll do with that. I guess I’ll have to do my best.” I suppose the other alternative for him is: well, let’s not beat around the bush. The other alternative for him is death.
I spoke with him a bit more before he left. I asked him how his time in America as a guy from the Middle East has been, and it sounds like he’s had a good stay here. I told him Americans can be very loving, and we can also be pigs, and I hope that he would find himself treated well here.
I realized that this may be the only chance in his life that he might be able to get loved for the person he is, without having to hide, and I suddenly had a desperate desire to somehow charge his batteries, as though if I just accepted him enough and gave him everything I had, it could somehow get him through the rest of his life back home.
I have done everything in my human capacity to carry my practice in such a way that I harm no one. That’s the minimum standard.
The maximum standard is that we bless each other, that we channel the arms of God and love the way God would love, hold the way God would hold, accept the way God would accept, empower the way God would empower.
In the perfect practice we lose any sense of the smallness of the partners and are overwhelmed with a sense of the largeness and goodness of what is around us, and beyond us, and underneath us, supporting us. Touch Practice has attracted and grabbed hold of me so forcefully because it is the way I experience God in my body. It is the way I experience being loved and accepted and held just as I am, for just who I am, without defense, without fear.
My heart is broken in both ways today. Broken open with joy and connection and the beauty and vulnerability of another human being, someone through whom I experienced the touch of the Infinite One, and broken/crushed with the understanding of the reality this beautiful being will return to when he leaves here.
And all I can do is pray–pray that the world will change before he graduates; pray that he will find his way out to a safer place, a place where he can manifest who he is, rather than who other people expect, a place where he can live life in his puppy body rather than being laminated under multiple layers of armor, just trying to keep his head.
Help us, Spirit.
Have thoughts you’d like to share?
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