P is for Prurient

Prurient: having or encouraging an excessive interest in sexual matters — is a word passed down from Latin unchanged in spelling, and nearly so in definition.

Purient, late 16th cent. (in the sense ‘having a mental itching’): from Latin prurient– ‘itching, longing’ and ‘being wanton,’ from the verb prurire– ‘itch, tingle’ ‘I long for’.

This word shows that — despite the preference for visual cues — the largest and most dominant sex organ is the brain. The ‘mental itching’ we feel varies upon individual triggers, but it’s the longing that causes arousal, not the other way around. After all, if you are sightless, imagination is what engorges your clitoris.

But who decided that excessive interest in sexual matters was a bad thing? Is being wanton such a threat to society that the Romans [not known for restraint] needed to separate the sensation of attraction to a potential sex partner, from the action of intercourse? Reproduction [not the ‘fake’ authentic antiquities peddled by the roadside] has always been controlled by DNA, despite the best efforts of despots, religion and fanatics to sanctify the process through the dubious institution of male/female marriage. I say dubious, because marriage should be a private matter untrammeled by bureaucracy of any flavor. If hand-fasting worked for the Scots, you shouldn’t require a license to wed your lover.

Certainly the rise of the internet has given new life to prurient behavior with unlimited excesses at your fingertips 24/7/365; but on the balance, I would argue that more people have been helped than harmed by the flood of sexual information now available. Yes there are lots of bad things and evil people online, but they already existed in real-life. But for every stalker or troll, there are thousands if not millions of LBGTQT+ persons who have finally found affirmation that they are not damaged, not defective, not diseased for being who they are. They are normal people for longing for someone other than the accepted binary coupling. It’s not prurient: it’s natural.

D/s is a true partnership between equals who find things that both enjoy in a loving, respectful and most importantly, with honesty in a relationship with full knowledge, consent and trust.

Byron Cane

2 Comments

  1. What an interesting word for you to offer up, and, as always, a thought-provoking post. As frequently happens, sex and the “sex police” are inevitably at loggerheads. And, yes, you’re right – including the legalese that surrounds marriage. I don’t want an outsider in a political office telling me how much is too much when it comes to sex of any kind. My longings, desires and needs are my own, as is my want to be touched, kissed, played with and driven to oblivion by my lover. If that makes me prurient, then I’m happy to be so.

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Spank you very much

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