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Self-Absorbed and Spiritually Seeking

May 19, 2015
Sometimes I get tired of myself. I start to feel that “I” am sealed in the Tupperware-like container of a “self” that is low-ceilinged and narrow. And here’s the worst of it: I fear I fit the damn Tupperware perfectly and don’t even feel especially guilty about being such a self-absorbed limited creature. However, I […] Read More

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News Mini-Post: Sex Change & Faith

May 11, 2015
A transgender woman’s struggle with and reliance on religion as she goes through the immense change. My new piece is up on Huffington Post. Please have a look (and feel free to Share). From Christine Connelly: “My entire family has shunned me. I’ve been dis-invited to Christmas, birthday celebrations and all family activities because I […] Read More

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Innocence, Purity, Sexual Experience

May 6, 2015
Loss of innocence is equated with first sexual experience by a multitude of cultures and generations. This is wrong. Innocence is lost when a person learns in a gut way that it’s possible for something important to go permanently irrevocably wrong. That can happen at any age. Certainly such a realization can come about through […] Read More

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Gender Identity: The Old-Fashioned Way(s)

April 30, 2015
People of different generations may view gender differently, it seems. My brother Franc Payne offered this charming gender identity account in a recent email: “QUICK UNCLE LUTHER STORY: Our whole family and Granna and Grandaddy were up visiting Taylor Pond on some holiday. We were sitting out on the screen porch …. As usual most […] Read More

Портрет красивой сексуальной молодой женщины на белом фоне.

What Is Spiritual Sex?

April 22, 2015
The stereotype of sex and spirituality or “spiritual sex” is: candlelight, slow-motion, light-touch, quiet. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I’d like to widen the definition. Spiritual can also include vigorous. What makes sex spiritual is not the setting or the trappings or the special effects or lack of them. It’s breaking out […] Read More

Depressed Overweight Woman

Sex, Spirituality, and Eating Disorders

April 15, 2015
Hunger is the driving force for all three: sex, spiritual-seeking, and eating. They form one mighty Gulf Stream: appetite, desire, need, hunger, craving and even ambition. (Just now, I mindlessly rose from the sofa to get two more Hershey’s Kisses — at 10:22 a.m.; hand deep in the candy bag before I realized the irony.) […] Read More

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April Love: Season of Sex and Spirituality

April 8, 2015
It was 1957 and I was eight years old when I used my ratty-edged 4th-grade student card to get into the movie theater around the corner from my parent’s business in downtown Wilmington. Oh, how well I remember it: that paragon of grown-up male cuteness Pat Boone singing “April Love.” (Let’s ignore his politics, okay?) […] Read More

Postage stamp Spain 1962 St. Teresa, by Bernini

The Higher Math of Being Passionate

April 1, 2015
Here are 8 bits of wisdom on the intersection of sex and spirituality that I drew from Asheville writer Gregg Levoy’s new book, Vital Signs: The Nature and Nurture of Passion. Though I never thought I’d have any use for algebra or the classical logic course I took (to dodge the college math requirement), somehow […] Read More

woman , textile Industry , rural Rajasthan, India

Writing Styles: Exiled, Outsider, Obsessive

March 24, 2015
An unusual post: obsessive and taking a peculiar course, winding together my wrestle with a mild-ish case of OCD with the political exiles of writer Ariel Dorfman and the effect of an outsider point-of-view on writing styles. Yes, definitely odd. Under the title “Letter to an Exile,” it won first this year in the Intercultural […] Read More

Betsy Blankenbaker’s Autobiography of an Orgasm

March 17, 2015
Dan Wakefield reviews a new memoir today on Huffington Post. Here’s his unusual lead-in to this remarkably honest, intimate, and at times spiritual, story: Full disclosure: the filmmaker Betsy Blankenbaker is a friend of mine. She is not, however, an intimate friend. I knew nothing at all about her orgasms until I read her new […] Read More


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