Many attempt to de-erotize life, but their efforts are doom to a failure of sorts. Some people turn to religion to tap down the eroticism of modern life. This can work for a time, but balloon that is pressed down on one end always pops up on the other end. The downfall of high-profile preachers and righteous public figures are a tribute to this effect. Other people attempt to avoid the erotic all together. This is a tenable solution, but it is challenging given the breadth of erotic content in our culture. These two methods address the symptoms and not the root cause. The root cause is the objectification of the erotic. Objectification turns people into lumps of sexually charge things. The actual person is depersonalized. Inappropriate behaviors are excused because there is little recognition that another person. The surface treatments, religion and avoidance, are failures because the dehumanization other people is still going on even if no actual inappropriate behavior takes place.
What can a person do to de-erotize life in a safe way, one that recognizes the humanity in others? I’ve participated in my share of these activities. They share a method that addresses the root cause of sexual objectification.
Ways to de-erotize life:
• Learn professional massage therapy – the body becomes more than sexual parts and pieces
• Become a (semi) professional artist (including photography) – the beauty of the body is appreciated in a professional way, and this occurs often enough that the erotic charge is greatly reduced
• Participate in social dancing – Person –to-person contact becomes common event, and “manners” are learned while others are appreciated for more than just their sexual stuff
• Public speaking / Participation in group events – the emphasis for interaction shifts from the physical / erotic and moves into other areas as a deeper appreciation of others is learned
How do these de-erotize life? They all recognize that people are something other than erotic objects. But wait, there is more! There is an incredible paradox at play here. The removal of erotic objectification is achieved by a detached depersonalization of people. People are no longer seen as sexual / erotic entities. For example, the artist can stare at nudity all day and see only the shape of the body in relation to its surroundings. This sounds incredibly bad and downright unhealthy, but there is twist that saves the day. I believe the magic of the paradox is that the depersonalization last just long enough to break the erotic spell. Our knee-jerk reactions to the erotized triggers are broken. A massage therapist can see a nude person as a client and an artist can see a nude person as a model. In that another moment the disconnection for the erotic allows a deeper appreciation of the person.
The embracing of healthy de-erotizing activities is that appropriate reactions are learned for erotic situations. The bottom line is that methods of de-erotizing life allow freedom from erotic triggers leading to inappropriate actions. Just enough de-erotizing returns returning control to the individual, allowing them to make better decisions about when to be erotic or how respond to erotic situations.