John Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences has one called Kinesthetic Intelligence. Proproioception – knowing where your body is in space. Eye-hand coordination. Physical grace. The ability to move your limbs together in concert in a way that facilitates dancing – or even walking or running – well. Admittedly, among my many gifts, kinesthetic intelligence is not a strong suit. I’m kind of a kutz.
But I think we missed one. There’s an intelligence that often gets left out of discussions about ways of being brilliant or capable. It’s our Erotic Intelligence.
It’s no wonder Erotic Intelligence gets overlooked, in our still-pretty-puritanical culture, despite the oversexualization we sometimes see of young girls and children and the widespread use of sexuality and especially the female form to sell myriad products and services. Much as we use sex to sell, we’re using the perceived vice of sex, just as we use vices like gluttony or avarice or greed. Even when we’re seducing one another with a quality, we know we’re calling on the “devil on the shoulder” of our mark, not the “angel” sitting on her other shoulder.
But what about sexuality as a virtue? What about Erotic Intelligence rather than erotic urge or erotic instinct? We know that as mammals, sexuality is basic to our makeup: it’s how the species survives. But it’s also clear, on this hot, already-overcrowded planet, that our species is not, NOT threatened, at this point, by our inability to produce enough offspring. Nope. Sex has other purposes now.
And those purposes – as we’ve evolved past being merely a group of mammals groveling for one more generation of representin’ on this blue orb – are just as important. Erotic Intelligence is the expression of one of the virtues that allows us to express the more divine side of our humanity, the more refined, elevated, evolved-brain aspects of why homo sapiens are different from (if not, in my opinion, intrinsically superior to) other species on the planet. We’re capable of logic, vision, empathy, problem-solving, and apprehension of forces we can’t detect with our five bodily senses.
Erotic Intelligence is one of the bridges between those five senses and the other senses we have that transcend our bodies.
Erotic Intelligence includes:
- Being able to detect and make space for physical sensations
- Being aware of and open to our own arousal, even when it comes from places we might not have expected or in situations we might not deem “appropriate” (we remain free to not act on our arousal if such action is inappropriate!)
- Being able to feel turn-on and other forms of energy in other people and being willing to be aware of those energies, even when we don’t want them directed at us or don’t quite know what to do with them
- Having capacity for and growing our capacity for turn-on, desire, and sensation
- Learning to expand our repertoire of sensations we are able to “ride” – whether pleasant or unpleasant, subtle or intense, desired or unintentional – being able to receive whatever comes at us (even if we then take action to stop or change it)
- Knowing how to exchange energy with others in a consensual way. Note I’m not talking about being ‘sexually skilled’ – that’s another thing entirely, although related – but about being able to meet someone else’s energy with your own and to take a position, erotically, that heightens sensation and awareness for both of you.
I know there’s more… Please add to the conversation. What else does Erotic Intelligence contain? How have you developed yours? What is challenging about possessing this form of intelligence, or about growing it? Tell me below, or contact me privately via the contact page.