I was driving across Pennsylvania listening to the “Tapestry Song of Songs” CD and paying close attention to the words. Of course, the ones in Hebrew I couldn’t understand but could still appreciate the sounds. At first, I was just taken with the beauty of the tones. And then I started to contemplate the songs and the book upon which they’re based. Part of my journey’s listening “pleasure” had been tuning into AM talk radio which today is filled with so much hate. Even the religious programs seemed to be focused not so much on the special nature of a relationship with the Divine, but mostly on rejecting those not deemed worthy of having such a relationship. At any rate, the juxtaposition of the messages from the CD versus’ those from the AM radio moved me into a space of thinking about the true nature of my own spirituality and my sexuality. The hatemongers on AM radio would reject my sexuality as perverse. They are not able to see beyond the sexual acts that I engage in, and I’m not convinced that even if they could see beyond that point that they still wouldn’t be appalled by the pleasures of the flesh.
That thought then led to my contemplation of what it means to be a sexual being, and to enter into a sexual relationship with someone. I think it was “Dodi Li” playing at the time, a song associated with the portion of the Song of Solomon that says, “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine.” I noted when I was at the Museum of Jewish American History that this phrase is integral in the wedding ceremony. And I can understand why. There is something special and sacred about committing one’s self to another in a ritual. It forms a bond between two people that is sheltered from all outside influence, and thus should not be entered into lightly. Being a lesbian, I don’t have the opportunity to make such a public commitment in a way that is recognized as legitimate by the state. But nonetheless, I do have the capacity to love and be loved and share a part of me that, by the old school traditions of the heterosexual world, is reserved for marriage.
To enter into a sexual relationship, for me, is to share something really special with another woman. It’s not to be taken lightly or frivolously. Others can sleep with any willing warm body; I can not do that. I have. But I have not enjoyed it, and I often felt that I was betraying something in myself when I had a one night stand. I listened some more to the CD. I began to develop this notion that our sexual selves are a gift from God, and it doesn’t matter if the sex is straight or gay in nature. It’s about bonding in a sacred way with another person and it takes you to a place that is sacred or divine or whatever you want to call it. A place beyond words. A place that is free of judgement. And I believe such experiences are of God.
I wonder if these hatemongers on the radio have ever been there?