A Wondrous Knowing of the World

Sexual pleasure is no different from the sensory experience of pure looking or the feel on the tongue of a luscious fruit; it is a wondrous knowing of the world, given to us so that we may learn its fullness and radiance. The problem is not our acceptance of it; the problem is that this experience is so often misused and squandered. It is taken to enliven the deadened places of our lives, to distract instead of heightening our awareness.

People have even made eating into something it is not meant to be. Experienced as automatic impulse on the one hand, or as excess on the other, the nature of this physical necessity is distorted, and similarly distorted are all the other simple requirements for the renewing of life.

— Rilke, Worpswede, July 16, 1903
Letters to a Young Poet

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