I generally think that the Song of Songs isn't really about god and man, or man and man, or even that it's necessarily mystical. When I read it, I generally take the position that it's written by a woman to a man, but I don't really believe it's that, either. The voice flip-flops a lot. I do tend to think of it simply as a beautiful way to describe just how you love someone.
To me, the key phrase is, "My beloved is like a Gazelle". It's got some deep meaning to me, personally, that probably shouldn't be described at this point. I'm not even sure it could be described. Some people might have an inkling, or think they do (one person, I imagine, actually has a very good idea), but I don't honestly know how to define it.
As far as erotic thoughts about deity: I fall borderline. I think of Eris as extremely hot 'n' sexy, but I've never considered anything sexual with her, really. So I don't think I could consider the thoughts I have about her as "erotic", though others might think that simply seeing her in the light I do, I'm having erotic thoughts.
It brings up how I see most women, though: just because they're hot doesn't mean I think erotically about them. Hotness, to me, has ceased to be what it once was: a purely physical quality. It's far, far deeper than that now. I think this is because I've been using it so much online, with women I've never met. Instead of seeing their physical characteristics first, I see their personality.
I've noticed that this has translated into real life. How a person treats me when they first meet me is much more important than how they look.
A couple of people have indicated that I use "hottie" too freely, or that the term gets devalued. It's an interesting perception, as I've actually been very careful with it. The first time I ever used it was on LiveJournal, on 9/12/03. Of course, this is longer than some of you have been on my LJ, so it's going to seem like I've *always* used it. I never used it to refer to an actual, real person until 10/20/03, unless you count a reference made later on 9/12/03 to Eris as referring to "an actual, real person".
You see, I'm not exactly sure where I picked up "hottie" as a term, honestly. Probably from some other LJ user that I never actually met or friended, but who commented in a friend's journal.
I've used the word "hot" for a long time, at least since 7/18/03, when I wrote an essay about how I talk about women, which is now terribly out of date and no longer overly accurate.
The most important thing, of course, is that I don't see myself as judging looks before personality any longer, even though I admit that looks do play a part in how I see someone. I'm simply more disposed to action and depth over perception and desire.
I think that this shift has come primarily because of the women that I've met in the past two years or so. They have, in almost every case, shown me that there are things that I find much hotter than looks, things that glow from the inside. I'm not at all surprised at this, actually. I always knew that there were these things, but I never concentrated on them. I suppose that it was simply easier to say, "Yeah, she's hot," and ignore the personality. I imagine that it was partially a defense mechanism: I was in a relationship, one that I cared very much about, and I didn't want to see other women as really attractive. There's a reason that I've used the word "gorgeous" on three females in my entire life, and one was a Goddess and another was a kitten.
I admire things like strength, childlike wonder, assertiveness, and the ability to hold an intelligent conversation. Any of these things, once I see them, will really bring out a strong desire to get to know them better, and will make the woman more attractive to me. And each one trumps looks any day, as does the lack of them. There are, of course, other things I find attractive in a personality, but listing them is, possibly, too much.
So, as I think about it, I imagine that I've always found the personality of women to be extremely attractive, but I ignored it so that I could operate as I wanted to. It wasn't really a conscious decision, I don't think. Then again, very, very few women could possibly compare to Tina. Only very special ones ever had the ability to enter my mind in a way that might approach her, really. Those who did were so rare that it almost never happened, and it never, ever happened for long.
This is part of why it amused me so much when Tina broke up with me and I found myself in a world full of women whose looks simply amazed me. Some friends earned an interesting new place in my mind. It was as if the playing field was leveled because the outliers were removed. No longer was there a single standard that everyone had to beat. Those who have been around me since she broke up with me will, probably, have noticed the difference. If they haven't, then they're fooling themselves. Every woman is more beautiful in my eyes now, even those I thought could not become more lovely.
The term "hottie" rarely applies to just looks. There are, really, two classes of "hotties" in my world, though.
- There are the unnamed, faceless masses of hotties out there, the ones I see on the street who I don't know. They are hotties purely by virtue of their looks. . . but there's something more to them. I don't use the word "hottie" in reference to them unless I would like to meet them, get to know them, and find out who they really are, where those strengths are. The primary difference between these hotties and the next category is that these hotties may not have what it takes to remain hotties for long.
- There are people I know, and who I call "hottie". If I know the woman's personality, the term hottie takes on a whole new meaning. It becomes descriptive of the entire woman, every aspect of her, starting with her personality, and extending to her strengths and finally to her physical appearance. It takes into account everything I know about the woman, works its way up against the standards I have for the word "hottie" (and there are standards), and finds her deserving of the term.
Personally, I see a vast difference between the terms, even though they're the same word used for different categories. Honestly, this doesn't bother me in the least, though I can see how some might think it a tad confusing. In general, though, I consider use of the "hottie" of the second definition to be highly complimentary (from my perspective) and the term "hottie" of the first definition to be highly optimistic. By optimistic, I mean that I assume that the woman has something more to offer than just her looks, and that's what I search for in them. I don't want to get to know her because she's beautiful, but because I expect something more. If I find there is nothing more, then there's no loss on my part.
But I've really rambled too long about this.
On the to-do list:
- Track down resources for my next DP-related project: requirement packets
- Finish my next Oak Leaves article about Felicitas Goodman and ecstatic body postures
- Fix my Slavic vampire presentation for Walking With Fire
- Call the people I didn't manage to call last night
- Start in on the next Chronarchy.Com update
- Re-work my daily rituals a bit
- Maybe get cleaned up before tomorrow night. Just a bit.
- By popular request, add a "Make-shit-up-about-MJD" section to the next 3CG business meeting
- Maybe make a poll for the same thing here on my LJ
- Make sure we have a location for Saturnalia
- Write up that bit about costumes I've been meaning to. perlgirlju gave me a great start over email, and so I'll probably edit some things I wrote in my half of the conversation to her and use that as my basis for the entry.