Week 2: 6/14 Discussion Board

Please feel free to use this space to build upon any of our dialogue from Week 2 of Just Pleasure: Revolutionary Approaches to the Erotic. And here’s a brief description of the properties of the hound’s tongue and hibiscus that we added to our elixirs.

One thought on “Week 2: 6/14 Discussion Board

  1. Cat says:

    Hi all,

    Thank you again to Fatima for recording and sharing the audio from this week’s session.

    It was incredible to hear everything you all had to say. I remain so grateful for being part of this collective and living into such miraculous co-creation at this intense time to be alive.

    I will share from my two plant sitting sessions in the last two weeks.

    I knew immediately when Berenice and Anjali offered the assignment to listen to the plants that I would first get to know jasmine. I don’t believe she has a gender, but because “it” doesn’t validate the immensity of her being, in this human American English language, I will use “she/her” pronouns.
    Her message was one of effortlessness. This particular being was situated below a massive, gorgeous Jacaranda tree. So, naturally, I communed with both, which of course led to communing with all the life interrelating in that moment, hummingbirds and honey bees in particular. “Jasmine is Jasmine. Jacaranda is Jacaranda,” was, in part, what was communicated. They are not autonomous beings, none of us are, particularly when it comes to the erotic and reproduction. And, still they have an identity. They know who they are. For Jasmine, it is effortless to be Jasmine, and Jasmine does not want or need to be Jacaranda.
    When I asked about pleasure, desire, eros, sex, and reproduction, the message of interconnectedness was clear. Jasmine climbs to find sunlight. Her fragrance allures many creatures, which spreads her nectar. This particular jasmine seemed to adore warm sun and cool shade. I kept getting images of Morocco (though I’ve never been) or even Babylon. Jasmine, for me, is resonant with deep sensuality. I think that has something to do with the message of effortlessness. Her sensuality is effortless. I also have a sense she may aid in communication. Perhaps because she knows herself, she is more adept at communicating with integrity.

    Redwood Tree
    Oh, Grandfather Redwood. I communed more directly with Jasmine last week. I just returned indoors from a profound interaction with a particular Redwood tree that I’ve known just about my whole life. Wisdom and patience abound in this creature. Tears began to stream down my face. “How can I protect you?” I implored. “And what message do you have for this group?” (meaning us). “Oh Catherine, you know death is a part of life. There is no need to cry, child.” This, in part a message about being less sensitive to the acts we must take to keep going. This and, for me, at least, coming out of the broom closet. Admitting that I have a deeply loving relationship with this tree, that yes, I did commune with it. I cannot ultimately protect my Grandfather (he’s lived way longer than I; I am humbled by him). But I can be honest about the consciousness of plants, unlike Michael Pollan in the Botany of Desire. Terrific film in many ways, but it pained me each time he reminded viewers that this whole concept of plants having a consciousness was metaphoric. What’s saving me (not with regard to the film, but in my life in general) is the realization that my life is intimately supported by so, so so many life forms. We need to be honest about this in the face of rampant exploitation, depletion, and unnecessary destruction.

    PS – I was particularly moved by your story, Nicole, about the dandelion guitar.

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